Show struggle as CC encounters intermediate external obstacle.
|Quenaill "Quen" Shieldsman is a war-mage and Ishabal Ladyhammer's second-in-command, providing Empress Berenene with magical protective shields. A former lover of the Empress, he was replaced in her attentions by Shan. When Shan intends to marry Sandry, Quen aids him with the hopes that once Shan falls out of imperial favor, he will take his place again.
Don looked across the expanse of dirt road at Quen, his fellow noble, his adversary, his target. It had been made clear that Quen had no interest in civil discourse. There would be no talking amongst themselves and landing at a mutually beneficial decision that allowed Donieal to continue living his life uninterrupted in Winding Circle.
A flash of green light came shooting at him. Dodging to the right, Don barely missed being singed by the sulphurous magic streak. He only had a moment to celebrate before he was rolling to the left avoiding a faster bolt of red fire. The hair on his right thigh singed, he was barely fast enough. He formed a barrier of magic in front of him and pushed it in Quen's direction. Half a second later his barrier rebounded back at him. Don was able to reabsorb his own magic but he was unprepared for what came after it. He recognized the feeling of immobilization instantly. Quen had been playing with him, distracting Don so he could build the energy needed to enact such a forceful spell.
Dons muscles automatically tensed against the jelly like magic that held him in place. It took all of his will power not to panic. There would be no muscling out of this one. Magic was the only way to beat magic.
"You don't know about this particular spell Donieal. Your new mage peers would have told you about it though had they known I'd be making an appearance. I used it to snare them once before too and they were much more experienced than you are. Admit defeat now and we can be done with all the un-pleasantries. You owe your skills to Her and She will have them, one way or the other." Donieal barely heard Quen, closing his eyes helped to focus his will. Finding his magic spark he began to draw it outward. Using his elemental magic he beat against Quens shield spells relentlessly. Hammering with all his magical might, there wasn't a single scratch of damage inflicted on the spell that continued to constrict him. Sweat was pouring down Don's back and face, salty rivulets fell into his eyes. He remained helpless to even wipe the moisture from his brow, the binding spell rendering him completely motionless, hands at his sides.
A low yet clearly arrogant chuckle refocused his attention on the Empress' pet mage. Valiant try young Donieal, but your magic is way too...primitive to be of any use. Don't fret, Ishabal and I will teach you how to tame and focus your energies so that they are of more use. I won't teach you how to break this spell of course, a true magician never gives away all his secrets..." Ignoring Quen as he continued to ramble, Quen always did like to hear the sound of his own voice, Don once again went into his magical self. He heard Tris from deep within. You have elemental magic, that means it's everywhere. The soil beneath your feet, the air in your lungs, it's all magic, you just have to listen to it and bend it to your will.
Don sent a tendril of green magic through the bottom of Quens barrier and into the dirt road. He rode his earth magic underground to the spot directly beneath Quen. Now what? He could blast the older mage right off his feet. Surely the world would be a better place without such an egotistical bastard around. An egotistical bastard in the hands of a self centered Empress no less. It would be so easy to kill him, maybe scare Her off his trail once and for all. But he couldn't do that, he couldn't take this mans life, not when he posed no threat to his own well being. No, it would be better to alter his mind, erase his memories.
Without thinking Don shot his arrow of magic up through the dirt and into the sole of Quens feet. Quen stiffened as the foreign magic invaded his senses but he was helpless to stop it. In the time it took him to blink Don's magic had infiltrated his mind and snuffed out his consciousness in a blaze of white heat. Quen crumpled to the ground. The wards surrounding Don dissolved. Walking up to the incapacitated mage he verified he was still breathing, alive, just knocked out. Don breathed a heavy sigh of relief before allowing himself to float into the oncoming darkness encroaching on his vision.