Author Topic: Teriksa's Stories (or something like that) -- Teriksa and The College --  (Read 60 times)

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Offline Teriksa

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  • Observe this wild folf.
    • DeviantArt - mageofcatswri
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  • Fursona Species: Folf
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Word count: 3303
Time to read: eh, give it a good eight minutes.

Summary: Teriksa wakes in The College, his college, and begins a new day. Nothing terribly exciting happens in this chapter, it's just to set the scene. Enjoy nonetheless.

Themes: Morning routine, The College, magic, implied history that isn't 'expositionated,' silliness, stuff.

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— Teriksa and The College —

An incessant droning noise woke me from my sweet reverie. This morning’s alarm was set to ‘extra annoying.’

That is to say that my friend, Sobra, was whining at my door. I yelled at him four times before his hard claws skittered down the frozen hallway. He and I would meet in the cafeteria after I finished pulling on my jeans and red and black striped shirt.

My dorm room was rather large, larger than the others, and the walls were made of large, pale river-rocks, each gathered from the bottom of the Cyndiago by my own paws. The bed had been a piece of work; it had been constructed out of driftwood by one of the art students and thereafter donated to the dormitory wing. Its frame had needed painting and a good sanding (and, eventually, some entirely new wood), though the bed was now made of a deep and dark mahogany and coated with a thick lacquer. The mattress wasn’t terribly comfortable, but it was serviceable. I tried to not stay too long on the spring-loaded cushion.

Regardless, it was upon this that I slept each night.

The window to my room was framed in twisted and gnarled branches, crafted lovingly by one of the room’s past proprietors, far before my incumbency. Outside, I could see the absolute darkness of the Earth; we were underground.

I mean, the only reason that The College was still around was because of its unique structure; it had been hewn straight into the mountain a few hundred years before the outbreak of the War of the Eighth.

I finished pulling my thin grey sweatshirt over my svelte frame, then looked at myself in the hourglass-shaped floor mirror. I was considering getting my dark black fur bleached and dyed in some areas — I’ve always been fond of green and red; my hair spiky hair was red but it had been green, in the past.

“Teriksa!” I heard from the door. Again.

I took one last glance at the back of my pants, making sure that there weren’t any mysterious stains on it — I’d not done my laundry for a week — before yanking the door open and growling “What, what is it?” at Sobra.

“How late were you up last night?” He asked me, giving me a pointed stare as I exited into the hallway. The floor was entirely encased in ice, though it was much thinner than that covering the convex walls. It showed the incredible darkness of the true floor as well as a few sparkling minerals — it was taught in our history classes that the hallways had been frozen before the lower floors could be, pun unintended, floored.

“Um...” I mumbled, walking on his left. We went barefoot, as was our wont, and maintained traction through the use of a rather simple cantrip which had long ago settled into the basic foundation of The College. “Perhaps two or three?”

I’d stayed awake for longer than that, using my custom laptop to chat with my friends and to watch videos.

“Two... or three?” Sobra drawled. “It’s twelve, now.”

I squinted at the walls, trying to see the reflection of the clock from around the bend. Doors lined the outside wall, carved into the ice like initials on trees. Occasionally, the ice would refreeze over a door during the night and the student would have to be broken out of their own room.

“Twelve?” I asked, sand dripping from my tongue. “That’s a wee bit late.” I muttered.

“Yeah.” He said, stuffing his paws into his black pants. There were fresh tears in the fabric and the frayed stitching, white from the stress, hung out like a soft kitten’s fur. He was wearing a blue and puffy vest over a long-sleeved green shirt.

“What happened to your pants?” I asked. He shrugged.

“You know how rogues are.” He chuckled, reaching down to touch one of the tears and wincing a bit. “Had to go, um, take care of one today. She got the drop on me.”

“Oh...” I trailed off, concerned. “You okay?” He shrugged again and flicked his ears in wariness.

“I’m just a bit pissed; she escaped through a crack in the roof and left me there with several reanimated denizens in the grotto.”

“Oh, ew.” Zombies were one of my least favourite things about worlds that had a strong connection with magic.

We approached the college’s central chute, a massive tube with a width equivalent to my height. Powered by air, it accelerated anything within it to a comfortable cruising speed and deposited them at a floor of their choosing. The physics behind it were a bit iffy, though I believed that there was an enchantment in the ice that created new enchantments which were custom-tailored to the needs of each student as they walked into the chute.

I tapped the grey, circular, stone portal with a black claw and it hissed open. It was impossible to chat with the air whistling past our ears the entire time. We weren’t in the elevator for very long, anyway, and landed lightly on the spongy material of the exit platform when it came our time to depart. Entering the third floor’s wide and expansive hallways of the third floor, I closed the door behind us. Here was where the graduate students lived. Each was allowed a massive room that, I had heard, was gilded in gold and had its own miniature kitchen.

Honestly, though, that was overrated; I had the power to make my room however large I wanted it, considering my prowess with dimensional magic.

At the far end of the hallway, the massive, iron door to the cafeteria loomed. It was embellished and engraved with scenes of the War of the Eighth. To the far right of the door, one was able to observe Mage striking down the army of Alindore. The entire thing had deep impressions that imitated the holes of a portcullis and a small wicket gate was softly outlined in the middle of the great structure.

We entered, blue runes glowing briefly on the gate as Sobra touched it before it slowly melted into the more massive door. The cafeteria was also massive; the door wasn’t large for no reason. Its vaulted roof spanned the next two floors of the college above us, letting the warm light of summer into the area. Far above us was a stony outcropping that covered half of the window and blocked much sunlight. As with the rest of the college, the entirety of the cafeteria was covered in a thick sheet of blue ice.

Not many students were in the cafeteria when Sobra and I entered; most students didn’t each lunch until one or two in the afternoon. Assyria’s store, La Chatte Noire, was open, as always, and I could almost see the scent of her freshly-baked loaves of bread wafting through the air and collecting in the roof. She was one of nine stores that lined the leftmost wall of the cafeteria, though she was one of four stores that actually had its own area to eat; she had, with my help, actually, set up some easily moved iron stanchions and dragged some of the glass tables from the court of the cafeteria. Of course, being an seamstress, she’d sewn her own pillows — red and purple pillows — and then enchanted them with the ability to hover.

I knocked on the convex storefront’s glass door and saw Assyria, a spotted brown hyena who was wearing a red apron — “Get off of my lawn and eat more bread.” — suddenly rise from behind the wooden counter. She motioned at the door, miming opening it, while frowning at me in annoyance.

“Dude, stop messing with her.” Sobra said.

“...Nah.” I said, suppressing a smile and shrugging out of ‘confusion’ to Assyria. Her face grew more grave and she lifted part of the counter up, storming over to me.

“It’s open.” She growled over the ring of the bell as the door swung open from the inside and almost hit me on my snout. “What do you want, transfer student.” She grumbled, arms crossed as she walked back to her post.

“Grumpy much?” I said.
“Look, folf, I don’t have time for your games.” She said, tapping her fingers against the counter with the force of a grand pianist.

“Heh. Sorry.” I rolled my eyes.

“He’s not sorry.” Sobra whispered.

“I know.” Assyria said. I elbowed Sobra nonetheless. “Did you come here just to annoy me?” She asked.

“Nah, I actually did want breakfast.”

“It’s twelve.” She said. “Twelve, Teriksa.”

“You’re right, I should’ve waited until two at least.”

“Just order already.” Sobra said while yawning. I shrugged.

“My usual, ‘Ria.” I said. She glared at me.

“Why would I bother to remember what your ‘usual’ is?”

“I’ve been here for two years, like, come one.” I rolled my eyes at her.

“Whatever.” She waved her hand in the air, tapered claws tracing spiraling, golden designs through the medium. “Sobra? What would you like.”

“The usual.”

“Okay.” She repeated the motion. “It’ll be ready in a few minutes.” She pointed at one of the few barstools inside. “You. Sit. Don’t talk.” I sat and smirked at her. “Don’t look at me.” I stopped looking at her for the moment.

“Ah, Assyria, what’s up with you today?” Sobra asked. “You’re not usually this upset, even with Teriksa.”

“Ugh.” Assyria said, putting her hands in the air as though beholding some benevolent god. “First thing this morning, I come in, and Viki and Vac decided to come in and order my supreme dinner deal. But they’re Viki and Vac. Viki. And Vac. I couldn’t exactly refuse them.”

“Yeah, those two—” I started, then got hushed by Assyria.

“As I was saying, after that, I had to play catch-up with about thirty orders because it took me so long to actually make their damn ‘breakfast.’ Dinner orders are for the evening only. Grah!” She was clearly at the edge of her temper; I stayed silent.

“I’m sorry that they had to come through here, Assyria, but I’d be a bit proud of the fact that they enjoy your cooking enough to chose you over the other, what, twenty-six cuisinists?” The other twenty-six stores lined up perfectly on the walls, nine of them per wall.

“I guess. They paid me extra, too. Still.” She sighed, though it was lost in the dinging over her kitchen. “Teriksa.” She muttered. I grinned and waved my hand; my chocolate pastry and Sobra’s tofu sandwich appeared in front of us. Sobra grabbed his before it could even come to a rest on the table and mine landed on my outstretched paws, all warm and a bit gooey and delicious.

“Go away.” Assyria said.

“Moi?” I asked, paw held over my chest.

“Yes, you.” She said. “I’ve work to do.” She scanned the sea of people who weren’t there. “We’re very busy today.”

Sobra deposited the amount owed and then we left.

“So, Teriksa, how do you feel about coming with me to the market today?” He asked as we had a sit on the floating cushions outside.

“I suppose that it’d be nice.” I said, contemplating and chewing my pastry. In all honesty, I had nothing important to do that day and, therefore, I needn’t have contemplated.

“Yeah! We can go to Psi’s Oddities shop.” He nodded.

“I don’t really—”

“Aw, come on, Psi might have some cool stuff this time. Remember that water wheel that he had the other day?”

“Mere trickery; it wasn’t even woven from magic.” I said. The wheel had run upside down, countercurrent, raising water from where the current hit it and dropping it downstream. It had worked on a recently discovered concept in physics — anti-mass particles of some kind that actually moved toward the application of force. While interesting, it wasn’t really ‘magical,’ and Psi’s Oddities’s motto was ‘There’s no store more magical!’

False advertising really got on my nerves.

“But it looked cool!” He said, looking to the sky and beaming.

“Cool? That looked cool?” I said, smirking. “Right. You tell me that when I take you to Grandiosa next.”

“T-th-what?” He stuttered.

“Grandiosa. The crystal city.”

“Is it pretty?”

“Oh yes.” I said, taking a bite of my pastry. “Crystals of every colour and shape on the pathways and it looks like it has been ripped straight out of a science-fiction book.” I waggled my eyebrows.

“Oooh, tingly.” Sobra said. “So... Psi’s?”

“Ugh, fine. I can’t say no to you.” I growled. He smiled and took the last bite of his tofu sandwich. I wasn’t even halfway through my meal. I stood up with him, holding the pastry in my right hand.

After an awkward moment of him just staring at me, head tilted to the side, he finally asked me: “Are you better...? ...You did teleport our sandwiches out.”

I shrugged. “Perhaps.” I waved my hand in the air and a small gap into darkness appeared in front of me. I reached through it and touched my laptop.

Suddenly, the gap disappeared and I wobbled a bit.

“Teriksa—” Sobra put my arm around his shoulders.

“Sorry.” The energy expenditure had hit me suddenly and I leaned on Sobra for a few moments, my pastry dropping to my side. My head felt like helium had been pumped into it. After a minute, I regained my composure and apologized to Sobra again, biting into my pastry after standing up.

“It’s okay, Teriksa. Gosh, don’t overstrain yourself.” He said.

“I know, I’m sorry.” I said as he sighed.

“Fine, fine.” He said.

“What’s the weather like outside?” I asked; I wasn’t intolerant of cold (the College itself was a pleasant seventy or-so degrees all year) but I disliked it after a certain level.

“I’m assuming that it’s in the eighties already, summer and all.”

“Yeah, but I remember this one time when I go out and it’s pelting snow and hail and it’s ten degrees above zero and also, by the way, just so you know, that was last week.”

“I’m sure that it’s perfectly nice outside today. Speaking of which, we should get going.” He said. I shrugged while chewing on the last bits of my cold pastry.

“I guess.” We walked out of the cafeteria and made our way to the grand staircase at the end of the main hallway — the elevator would only take us up another three floors, not another four.

The structure was, as with everything else in the main parts of The College, made of stone encased in thick, thick ice. The guardrails were, however, made of exquisitely smooth gold and sprung out of the side of the ice like saplings from snow. As I’ve said before, the ice itself wasn’t slippery to students of the college, so the guardrails were there mostly to stop clumsy students and visitors from falling off. It was a long drop to the bottom of the well; the stairs actually went all the way to the bottom and — leaning over — it was unclear of where the bottom actually was. It was too far away to make anything out.

I grumbled from the forced exercise as we neared the top floor. I could feel the relative warmth of the outside air pushing in — The College relied upon some basic enchantments to keep the weather out. The enchantments weren’t that great because they were a project for entry-level students; they were inefficient and would slowly improve over the course of the year as the students who wrote them got more proficient in their magic.

Indeed, we rounded the last bit of the wide staircase and were greeted by the giant and crumbling awning that led directly into the outside world.

Sobra and I exited and I took the time to stretch in the warm summer breeze. The buzzing of the enchantments on the awning at the entrance to the stairs sent a pleasant buzz down my back. After my eyes adjusted, I was given the opportunity to scrutinize the ruins above ground better. Imagine a grand cathedral made of grey and smooth stone and with beautiful and intricate stained-glass windows that depicted marvelous events from the past of the world. The ceiling, so high above us, supported by glistening, translucent, blue pillars — magic pillars, of course — and the ceiling itself painted with the greatest magicians of all time. Mage would have been the last, of course, as it was during his time on this planet that the entire above-ground structure of The College — a massive thing of which the cathedral had been a minuscule part — had been destroyed.

Certainly, one could still find the ruins of the College. Much of it had deteriorated. I was shocked when I had arrived in the dimension to find that such a prestigious institute had never rebuilt the scattered and broken stone walls and rubble that lay strewn about, just beyond their entrance.

Where once gold had been inlaid into the floors, dust and rocks now slept.

“Damn, why is it always so dusty up here?” Sobra sniffed.

“Hm. Who knows.” I said, monotonous voice echoing out over the expanse of grey dust that choked everything, barely shifting in the wind. “Maybe because it’s because this is stone rubble and it’s always getting weathered.”

He looked at me.

“As if!” He said. “Like, I get that this is stone dust, but it’s definitely not natural fo—”

“Look, I teleport, you slow time, The College is constantly frozen, what, exactly, is natural about this place?”

He pursed his lips, chagrined.

“Your teleportation abilities would come in handy right about now, actually.” He said. “I hate paying for AirTax.” He traced a run in the air in front of him, all twists and ugly caricatures of the beautiful mathematical constants that supported the true runic incantations that we studied at The College.

It had, I heard, been dumbed down for the regular populace to understand.

A few minutes passed, Sobra and I talking quietly amongst ourselves because the destroyed rubble had a strange way of amplifying our voices until they resounding like a rockslide tumbling down a mountain, before a blue wolf zipped through the chamber and stopped in front of us, sitting with both of his legs thrown over the side of the long broom below him, crossed elegantly. He wore a giant black, pointed hat, a green scarf which ended in two frog’s eyes, a thin, red windbreaker, and some slightly ripped blue-jeans.

Another reason why I disliked AirTax was because their porters often used brooms.

“Hey, boys.” He lilted, smiling at us.

“Hi,” Sobra smiled. “How are you, Zandre?”

“Ah, you know, been fighting things, this and that.” He lounged across his broom, keeping his balance impeccably. I looked over at Sobra, confused.

“Ah, Teriksa, meet Zandre.” Sobra said. “He’s an old friend of mine.”

I nodded. Zandre leaped to his feet and held a hand out to me, standing on the hovering broom like it was a skateboard or something.

“Nice to meet’ya, Teri!” He said. I glared at him.

“Please never call me Teri.” I said. “Sorry, just, that name...” I trailed off.

“Eh, yeah, don’t worry, I totally get it.” He winked at me. “Anyway, climb on! I’ll give you this ride for free... so long as you take the time to chat with me, Sobra! It has been, like, two months since we had a good chat.”

We clambered onto the broom, sitting on it in a more conventional manner since we didn’t have the blue wolf’s strange balancing abilities, and settled in for the ride.

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Yeah, as always, critique is welcome.

I'll actually go back and change the original copy of this one if I feel the need; this is a WIP piece.

You'll notice that this is actually connected to the last one that I posted, though that's supplementary and, therefore, unneeded material.

Anyway, see y'all later. <3
  • Pronouns: He/Him/His
> Observations intensify.