The Founder's Chronicles

Diving into Unconsciousness

The Enchantress and those loyal had imprisoned those who dared disobey and had those willing scout the forests for any sign of their savior. Rowena was unbelieving of Avalon’s action: intentionally freeing the Elder Dragon; yet while destruction seemed their fate it was not so. She also was fearful of what may have should Avalon be found, the alchemist had absorbed an incredible amount of natural magic and the golden of her eyes was not all that had changed. The witch and Fenrir both saw Avalon leap, watch her contract the sword’s spell and unleash an attack the witch had not expected. It was far more magic than she thought Avalon was willing or even capable of using without the feared...side-effects. It was a moment, only a moment, one Rowena hoped to be a trick of her eyes; part of Avalon’s face did not look human.

As they slopped thru the snow, Fenrir ran ahead sniffing around for any trace of his friend. How he had the strength and energy to continue after all the fighting was miraculous. The Anexus and their familiars were indeed something else or perhaps this was a normal occurrence to those beyond the Glen--everyone was fighting one side or another; children raised to know, fight, and accept death in wars not their own; families torn apart; alliances made and shattered; dreams and desires cut short by the seemingly eternal struggle of war. Avalon told the witch this, all of this, saying one way or another that same war would eventually reach the boarders and no matter of spell, charm, or shield would keep it out. She told Rowena: knowledge is knowing and wisdom is knowing how to use knowledge. Avalon had wisdom well beyond her years, she had to; there was no choice it was life or death and death was not only limited to one’s self, but those around. One life, one death can change the course of history.

Rowena believed she knew best; she knew the most, but now...after coming face to face with a living myth...she feels that she knows nothing of the world. They are limited in their library, in their seclusion; its decided: whether Avalon returns or not, they will change, they will join this union and learn. Fenrir’s bark in the distance sent the witch running. The trees above were crushed, knocked down from above by something that had crashed into it. Fenrir was where the ground was pushed up, in a small crater lay a young black dragon, bearing its mouth full of daggers at the dire wolf. Rowena stopped beside him realizing in the dragon’s hold was Avalon.

In Hogsmeade the rebels had their wands taken and were imprisoned in the dungeons below ground. Rowena had Avalon taken to the Ravenclaw house, kept in the largest bed of the house for comfort and access to the most herbs. Anne and a few other healers came to treat the unconscious alchemist, who succumb to a large number of injuries both ex and internal. By the end of her treatment, bindings and mendings she bared a close resemblance to a mummy. She did not stir during the entire duration of care, surprisingly, even during parts certainly the most painful to a waking patient. The greatest and most concerning of her wounds was to her left arm and chest. Bruised; heavy and thick with blue and purple, lines of brownish-gold caused by the strike of lightning traced her hand and traveled upward thru her arm, across her chest and stopping just past her heart. Taking a strike of lightning...none knew what to do, wielding Caliburn was perhaps the only reason she survived.

Once the healers left there was little else to do, but wait. There was no way to determine when Avalon would wake, if she would wake, but she was alive and that was a better sign than any. Rowena thought to send an owl to the alchemist;s allies, but felt conflict in the idea of inviting unknown people to the glen. Even if she could contact them effective way to arrive here was by either portkey or floo powder. Could she risk it?

“She has family does she not?” Finlay asked, rubbing Fenrir’s head, “It is only right of us to tell them, we owe her that much. Who knows, maybe they could have a way to wake her up!”

Rowena sat beside Avalon, looking to the woman who had done so much for their people. People she hardly knew, hardly understood and still she was willing to sacrifice her life to give them a ‘chance’ at escaping. She did not betray their trust; she earned every part of it and yet after all that has happened in these past few months Rowena continues to hold irrational fear. She is a member of the Ravenclaw House, where wit and learning are a man’s greatest treasure and as one born into the Agnew House where problems are solved by wisdom, not by force the answer should be simple. The witch stood.

“You are right.” She said, taking the prepared letter from her dress sleeve and holding it to Finlay, “This is a letter for Godric Gryffindor, detailing what has occurred and asking for any aid they may provide. Will you go and deliver this to his hands?”

Caught off guard the young wizard hesitated and realized this was a request, not a command. He had a choice. It was obvious what it would be, Avalon was someone he would call his friend and his friend needed help. Finlay nodded, taking the letter in his hands he put it in his robes:

“I will leave at once. Look for my return in three days by portkey at the Black Lake.” He said quickly, leaving, nearly running out the door.

Rowena looked again to Avalon who moved none and sat back down, taking the alchemist’s hand into her own. There was nothing else to do, but hope.

The strangers numbered in four. Three were known in the village as being the strongest of their covens and in most parts, with the Enchantress Lady Rowena, acknowledged as the most power witches and wizards of the age. Finlay guided them to the House of Ravenclaw and after being allowed entrance by Anne, followed the nursemaid up the stairs to a large bedroom. Rowena stood quickly, surprise expressed at seeing a familiar face.

“Helga?” Surprise voiced as the youngest of them broke from the speechless men and embraced the Enchantress.

“Rowena! I thought it might be ya’!” The yellow and black dressed witch said happily.

Hafan is a place where people from all over the isles come together, naturally even the secluded people of Hogsmeade have come to know the interior of the dragon-cave market. For Rowena and Helga specifically, though the differences in their age was much, they spent time together in their youth as their fathers were good friends. The time of reunion and checking up would have to come later, as Salazar cleared his throat he was more uncomfortable with being in the same room with former enemies--he glanced to the Volva who went to Avalon’s side quietly--than risking suspicion of his absence from Castle Walpurgis. Despite his discontent with some of their allies he was here nonetheless to show solidarity to his brother more than anything else.

“Are you the Enchantress Lady Rowena?” Salazar said on Godric’s stumbled behalf.

“I am, you must be Salazar Slytherin and Godric Gryffindor--Avalon has told me much about you.” Rowena said, turning attention to the reason they had gathered.

Godric found his courage again as he saw the state of his dearest friend.

“Your messenger and letter told us of an Elder Dragon? I am ashamed to say I have never heard of such a dragon, but it must have been powerful to cause...this...” He trailed when walking closer, “Avalon is a great warrior and a powerful alchemist, it is hard to imagine something able to have caused such wounds. I have never seen her in such a state.”

“Elder Dragons are not only the first and strongest of dragons, but also of all magical beasts.” The Volva spoke, “They were creatures even the traditional and ancient Anexus Clan did have record of. I myself did not believe there were any left alive.”

Fenrir lifted his head from his paws on the bed and whined when licking Avalon’s hand. Helga passed Rowena and moved onto the bed opposite of the Volva, drawing her wand. The wise-woman straightened stiff, instinctively gripping her staff as an ancient habit almost took old again. The youngest witch hovered both her wand and her opened hand above Avalon’s head as a soft light glowed underneath. All was quiet in the room as the master of healing was left to her art as the others went downstairs. Anne brought the three tea and biscuits, but remained beside Finlay at the edge of the room. They sat down, but Rowena did not indulge in the tea until a splash of wine was at her side as a substitute.

“What happened?” Godric asked, looking around the knowledge-lined room.

“I do not understand it much myself, I had honestly hoped Avalon would have awakened before your arrival for her to explain properly, but...” Rowena trailed.

Salazar said straight, “Helga is the best healer in the land, if anyone can heal the Anexus she can. We can do nothing for her now, but there are still things that must be done. As I understand it, you are Rowena Ravenclaw, the Enchantress she was sent here to forge an alliance with.”

Godric sunk in his chair, “Salazar is this really the time?”

“For me it is the only time, brother. You know of my risk coming here and still I have because I know just how dangerous these sorcerers are and will become should their research be complete.” Salazar announced, turning his attention back to Rowena, “The Dark Ones must be stopped, every member of their Dragon Bane Counsel eliminated, and all trace of their existence and magic be either purged or sealed away from those who would use it for malicious purpose.”

Godric sat uncomfortably back knowing his skills in surveillance and spying was of little ability. He did not envy his elder brother’s skill of deception and cunning, but was nonetheless grateful of it seeing as it is an irreplaceable asset that is required in war. That was a darkness to bear the man thought he could not, to be able to hold onto one’s self and still keep deep within the ranks of the enemy...Godric admires his brother’s strength. What history would see as trickery and deceit was actually the greatest courage.

“...Our coven is not oblivious to what goes on in the world beyond our boarders, but we have done well to keep war from entering them. I intend to continue this.” Rowena’s powerful voice announced, “This can only be done by eradicating this enemy before they can set foot in the glen. For that and to honor our debt to Avalon the Ravenclaw coven will share our knowledge and fight beside you.”

Godric showed his excitement with a wide smile, while Salazar nodded plainly in understanding. Avalon’s efforts had not been in vain and even if she was not to wake soon, her wishes would be fulfilled. To create a place where children could grow up in a safe environment, free from the horrors of war--to learn and understand magic’s true nature, not its use. This was Avalon’s will, this was all of their wills--the fighting must end, but it had to end soon, else there would be no one left to fight or fight for. Darkness would overtake the world as evil had its way with the good and innocent throwing the balance of the world over and purging the future in never-ending black. This they would not allow.

As the witches and wizard kept downstairs, Helga and the Volva did not emerge from the room for quite a long time. Godric paced the length of the house an innumerable amount of times, Salazar spoke with Rowena, converging on techniques and spells as she explained most details of their encounter of the Elder Dragon. The Enchantress minded her words carefully, as to not slip about Avalon’s possession of the Old Blood, nor what her communication with the dragons had appeared as. To many...speaking to beasts is often seen as a path of Dark Magic. The Anexus may see no ill-intent in their magic, but the same could not be said about sorcerers who are already at wit’s end fighting the Dark Ones.

Hours went by, the Helga and the Volva came from Rowena’s room together, both wearing weary and tired expressions. Much of their magic had been used and still Avalon remained unconscious. It was no longer a matter of her body, but her spirit, as the Volva explained: lightly, she explained the certain Anexus are able to use more natural magic than others, but it is not without consequence. In cases like these the alchemist is left drained, but this is not an ordinary case considering who her opponent was...the state of her arm is also concerning.

The Volva asked for a brew of warm tea from Anne and sat in a vacant seat by the fire place to warm her chilled bones. Rowena desired to speak with the Volva to find more truth to Avalon’s condition, but the witch thought to leave her to rest. Instead she went to her room, finding her small hope unfulfilled as she saw Avalon tucked into the bed with Fenrir at her feet. The witch forgot how big her bed was, since the Lord Ravenclaw’s death she has not left her side for his. With a full grown woman in its center and a rather large Dire Wolf and still there was room; quite a size for a single person.

The sword Avalon transmutated, that Rowena Enchanted; together they created was a weapon unlike any other. To call what the alchemist said a spell was not very Anexus, Avalon had named the sword. What was the name she had bonded to it? Excalibur. Rowena smiled slightly, the woman did not seem to think the name thru; Caliburn and Excalibur, those two names could easily be mistaken, but it mattered little. What was ironic was the enchantment Rowena had imbued it with to contrast the ability of Avalon’s first born. One to reject magic, the other to absorb and distribute it--Rowena hoped, she begged, whatever forces had allowed Avalon to survive this long that this enchantment would help to push out the magic within the alchemist...the same magic that was destined to kill her.

Rowena looked to the sword that rested beneath a sheet of fabric to obscure view. There was beauty in the sword, a beauty the witch did not expect to come from a war-clan, but that was her ignorance. There were many things the alchemist found beautiful and those same things were what she fought to protect. Avalon’s vision of the world’s was beautiful...she was a beautiful soul and the Enchantress was finding herself being enchanted by it. There were words on the sword, runes the witch did not understand and yet for Avalon to include them must mean they held a personal significance. Rowena moved her gaze from the sword back to Avalon who looked as though she was peacefully sleeping.

She should not have to die for the mistakes of the past; how was that balance? How was that fair? Rowena knew Avalon did not wish to die, that she wanted to keep fighting and to live with everyone together; to build the foundation of peace and die happy, knowing she had done good for the unborn children to come. The witch does not want to see Avalon parish because of this unfairness of destiny, she would not accept it and she would fight it. There had to be a way to save her, to keep her living without involuntarily paying a price not her own. The Volva entered the room as Rowena was deep in thought and caused the enchantress to jolt slightly at her touch.

“You wore an expression of a desire to question me for answers. For a woman said to be the wisest and fairest of all the land, I commend you of your ability to control the thirst for knowledge.” The old wise woman said, taking a seat in a chair beside the witch.

Rowena looked to the ancient alchemist, “It did not seem fair to burden you with them when you have spent hours tending to her.”

The Volva frowned, “I have found many things to be unfair in this world these past few years, the worst was of Avalon waking the Old Blood--yes I know she told you.”

There was no anger or mistrust, but the stating of a neutral fact. Avalon sent ravens regularly to the Volva, but the latest about an Elder Dragon: the Volva’s answer was to Avalon was the abandonment of the coven and return home. The wise woman openly admits this as age-old memories have taught her to advise with wisdom, but to know reality. Avalon would never have abandoned this village or its people, that is not in her nature. It is why she will never be a ‘good chief’ in the eyes of the Anexus Ancestors, yet she is already a better person than any other who came before.

“I had hoped...that I could find the solution to alleviate the burden of the Old Blood.” The Volva rested her personal staff in the meat of her shoulder, “But as she is the first to reject the Old Blood there is little for me to go off of to try to reverse the process.”

Rowena leaned forward and gently took the bandaged hand in her own, “It is like a parasite to her. A parasite that takes the life of its host little by little until either it or the host is killed.”

The Volva’s eyes widened. She had not thought of the Old Blood in such a manner, it is rather...disrespectful to regard something of Yggdrasil as anything other than a gift. The witch is not wrong nonetheless. This meeting under unfortunate circumstance maybe a blessing in disguise, the Volva thought. Though the heathen ways of a sorcerer goes against every teaching the Anexus were raised and raised to understand and resent, the times have changed. The world is not as black and white as it had been in the beginning as the solidarity lines of what is good and evil, truth and lies have blurred as the bloodlines have mixed and mingled into a most obscured version of what once was.

The Volva observed Rowena for a moment more before speaking again, “For one who relies on the mind over heart, your actions in regards to Avalon are most...peculiar.” She expressed, as the witch stiffened at the mention of her shift of personality.

“It is almost as if you--”

Shouting cut off the end of her sentence, as the stomping of boots on the wood and the throwing of the door had the room opened to Salazar. Before any could react, his wand traced the path and took the two women and the dire wolf from Avalon’s side and out the door. The door slammed and locked behind as he entered and they left not of their accord. Rowena and the Volva broke forward, kicking and working to force the door open, demanding the man open the door at once. Godric ran up the door out of breath, moving between the two as he pounded the door with the side of his fist.

“Salazar you mustn’t be rash!” The younger brother said thru the door, “We do not know what could happen!”

“I do.” Salazar answered in a flat tone, “Either she wakes with this or not at all. She does not have the luxury of lying idle by.”

“What is he doing!” The Volva grabbed Godric, twisting him to his back and pushing him to the door with her staff at his throat.

“Legilimency.” Godric answered.

Rowena stiffened, “Has he gone mad? He could shatter her mind!”

The Volva alternated her eyes between the two, demanding an explanation.

“Salazar is a very skilled Legilimens. He knows what he is doing--”

“He plans to enter Avalon’s mind and force her consciousness back to the surface...” Rowena whispered quietly, knowing that such a drastic and dangerous ploy could actually work.

Less than trusting, more suspicious now than ever before, the Volva reluctantly lowers her staff giving not a threat, but a promise: if he harms Avalon, not a single person will save him from the wrath of the Anexus Clan. She backs off the wizard and goes to the wall opposite of the room, waiting as a sentinel to prevent any others from entering. Rowena and Godric followed suit, keeping to both sides of the door hoping to listen in on any signs of stress or harm. Fenrir paces the outside of the door, hating his inability to combat the wizard’s magic and leaving his companion alone and unprotected

Satisfied he was now left alone, Salazar placed a spell to further enchant the door’s strength and another to close off any sound from entering or leaving the room. Less distractions, less danger. The wizard knew and trusted his skill as a Legilimens, but the chance of outside influence to interfere was a significant threat. He did not need a crazed old sage of the Anexus, the Enchantress, nor his brother to hinder a delicate art.

“You have caused me many problems Avalon Anexus.” The wizard said to the woman who did not look peacefully asleep.

“Do not mistake this as anything more than necessary--the Dark One’s cannot be defeated by any, but us...all of us. You can rest when the battle is won, or you are dead.” Salazar’s wand glowed as his wind blew into the unconscious, diving fast and wildly thru Avalon’s mind.

Salazar stepped thru numerous fragments of memories, distortions of the mind placed layer after layer of complexity and powers of protection. The alchemist’s mind did not take kindly to the invader, blackened shadows of golden eyes came forth, spiraling around the wizard speaking in a tongue foreign to the man. He expected this not to be easy, but in his endeavors, the minds of others did not procure such defenses in the shape of fiends such as these. Then again, alchemists are different than those of muggle or magical blood. Salazar cast away these apparitions, passing thru glimpses of memories, each of the voices sounding at once, unable to be separated and distinguished. This is because of the lack of the conscious mind, without awareness, there is no control, without control there is no ability to be controlled.

Thru the many layers Salazar dove, falling deeper and deeper until reaching the very bottom; layer after layer of thickened black. The first ‘complete’ memory he searched was one of a distant time: Avalon, not much younger than her present self, was on her knees before the clan, shirtless, her chest bound. The Volva stood above her, clapping her hands together, the sage pressed one hand to Avalon’s back; a light bright and blue glowed. This was the coordination ceremony of the next chief of the Anexus: to bare the tree of Yggdrasil was to bear the weight and fate of the clan upon one’s back. A moment of pain and the tattoo was finished, Avalon stood, the clan now kneeling before their chief. Salazar knew this was not where she was.

He pulled away from the memory, slipping into another. Falling, the wizard landed on the ground, as he regained his footing, he tasted the salted air as though he were experiencing this moment himself. The understanding of Legilimency is to know the difference between one’s own mind and the target’s and to use that understanding to control and read the target’s mind. To confuse one’s memories is to lose that control and sometimes lose one’s mind. There are cases where those unskilled in the art fail to do this and take on the memories and personalities of their targets, driving themselves into madness.

Salazar looked around and saw a single child, curled up against a stone. He came closer, recognizing Avalon in her youth, younger even than when he and she first crossed paths many years ago. Her eyes were full of tears, crying out to the skies, calling out to her mother to come back. For the first time in his life, Salazar pitied the Anexus woman. He understood the pain of losing a mother a pain that does not fade easily and never disappears.

“Avalon.” Called a hardened voice, “It is time.”

Tali was beside his horse, his hand extended as Avalon gripped the stone tighter. Salazar watched Tali walk to the child and carefully pry her from the stone and hold her in his arms for the last time.

“You must be strong Avalon, your baby brother will never know what your mother was like. It will be up to you to raise him in her place.” The father said, setting her on his horse, with reigns in hand as he walked.

This was not it either. Salazar departed again, he thought it best to avoid other memories, but such would not be so. Another shade appeared, its wale ear-shattering as it summoned others to its call. Salazar covered his ears, but the force of the wale had him thrown into another memory; he hit a wall, slumping to the ground he gathered his bearings. For a moment he thought he was back in the waking world, standing in the living room of the Ravenclaw House. Avalon stood by the fireplace, Rowena came, assuring the alchemist they were alone in the house and for safe measures a spell was placed to ensure none would hear.

“We call it the Old Blood, a power passed unto the Anexus by Yggdrasil just before it fell.” Avalon spoke without a hint of emotion.

Rowena stood quietly, listening to the explanation she was beginning to regret forcing Avalon to reveal.

“The Anexus are unable to create magic within ourselves as sorcerers can. Thru the Old Blood, those who awaken it are granted the ability to take natural magic and change it to our own. Those, such as myself, who awaken this have enhanced alchemy and physical ability.” The younger woman looked into the flames as she continued, “However, it is an ability that is not without cost: as is the law of nature, there is no gain without loss--equivalent exchange is the absolute law of alchemy itself. In exchange for this power, my life force, originally human, is traded for natural magic. My body will progressively lose its human form if I continuously use the Old Blood.”

Avalon stopped, her body cringing at the thought of what is necessary to suspend this process. Rowena came closer, placing her hand on Avalon’s shoulder.

The alchemist felt calmer with the witch’s touch, after a few breaths she was able to continue, “The only way to stop my body from changing is to do something unforgivable, something I refuse to do.”

Rowena forced herself to ask, “And since you will not...what will happen?”

Avalon’s gaze dropped, “In less than four years I will die.”

A shade grabbed Salazar, ripping him from the memory. The one wrapped its hands around the wizard’s throat, others came, clawing at his limbs threatening to overwhelm him. In a act of desperation Salazar enlightened his wand, banishing the shades with his brilliant light. Left to float in the space between memories Salazar found he could learn an incredible amount about the Anexus; weaknesses, origins, strengths, plots--it was something that would be explored as an option later. Now he had to wake the chief, else the other members of the clan will fall out of order and to chaos as they use a corrupted notion of blame to reason attacking sorcerers again.

The wizard hated to admit it, but Avalon is the sole reason the Anexus have altered who their foes are.

He avoided memories for the time being, sensing his time here was being cut shorter and shorter with each confrontation with the shades. Wasting no more of that time, Salazar dove deeper, passing thru thicker layers that grew denser with each level. The last was as though he were treading thru tar and the wizard would not have made it had he not possessed his wand. The thickened black left his body without stains, freeing him of his grasp for the meantime.

This place was as black as the tar he passed thru, but to his surprise there was water at his feet. Salazar was not alone, shouts and heavy breath made him aware of another’s presence and he turned to see its origin. Avalon was suspended in air, struggling against the pieces of her that were being torn from her as her left arm was melding into seemingly a branch. She sounded out in pain as the tree pulled, weaving its roots progressively thru her arm and beyond, determined to take the rest of her. She would not allow this, she stood fast, her will alone keeping the power that invaded her from consuming her; her own blood, one that cursed her to become other than human now helping this invader--they were, after all, of the same blood, the same power, the same origins. It is a difficult battle to keep a child from its mother.

“I doubt I have fallen into such madness that I would imagine the elder brother of my best friend.” Avalon chuckled, raising her head to meet the eyes of the wizard, “Well then, what brings Salazar Slytherin to the depths of my mind?”

“You are aware of your circumstance, good.” Sneered the impatient man, “That will make this go quicker--your fooling around has gone on long enough.”

Salazar aimed his wand at the suspended woman.

Avalon cautioned, “I would not if I were you.”

Lightning cracked and shot out from Avalon’s arm and sent the wizard off his feet. Had the Old Blood not caused a great deal of pain to her, she would have enjoyed seeing that more. Though the attack shook the wizard, it also caused backlash to Avalon for the moment, but at this point it was nothing she had not felt before. There was little comfort in growing accustomed to that pain.

“She does not take kindly to sorcerers, had you allowed me the chance I would have told you.” The alchemist cringed as the roots worked their way further in.

“Very well Anexus, as this is of your own doing I suppose you know the means to free yourself?” Salazar stood, brushing himself as he awaited an answer.

Avalon kept quiet.

“I suspected not.” He huffed, “Though you and I will will never see eye to eye, your importance to our cause cannot be overlooked and it is for this reason alone I am here now.”

Avalon frowned defeated, knowing she could not hope to escape the strength of the Old Blood alone. It is true, she and Salazar will never truly see eye to eye and it is in their mistrust of each other from the past that holds them in such a state. Neither will agree with the outlook of the one another, one will think themselves the superior magic and way of life to the other. None of that matters in this fight however, Godric is their sole connection and the sole reason they have not bared their fangs at another. It is because of Godric and his dream, their shared dream that Salazar is willing to be here.

“What must I do?” Salazar questioned, lowering his wand

Rowena entered the room first, followed by the Volva as soon as the door was unlocked. Salazar slumped against the wall, Godric found a chair for him to rest as this Legilimency had drained much of his magic. Fenrir followed, growling low at the wizard who forced him out and readied to tear out the man’s throat. Salazar was weak, but not enough to be without uneasiness of the dire wolf’s attitude toward him. Godric came between them, rubbing the wolf’s head as he tried to calm Fenrir’s anger, or at least act as a buffer of it.


The Volva nearly leaped onto the awaken woman as she rose from the bed. Rowena gave a loud sigh of relief as she leaned her head against the bed frame, rolling her face into the sapphire fabric that lined the bed and acted as the cover for a good night's rest. She was overjoyed of Avalon's waking, but for some reason, after hearing the Volva's sentence trail to something she did not expect, she found it difficult to look at the other woman.

"Forgive me, I caused you all quite a bit of trouble." Avalon said tiredly.

Rowena cleared her mind and blanked her face for a moment, but a small smile broke thru when she finally looked to the alchemist, "The only trouble was of my own people. Had they been in order they would not have forced our hand and ruined the plan."

Godric was the next to receive an embrace, "Does it hurt?" He asked gesturing to the bounded arm he took care not to brush against.

Avalon shook her head, simultaneously unwrapping the binding and discovering her arm to be without injury, but not in its originality. In the place of bare skin, her forearm had been taken over by blue and white tattoos forming a transmutation circle.

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