| Walking new Paths
| Dramatis Personae
29 October, 2016
A Dark Apostle is taught new ways and philosophies by a Hedge Witch.
Sarah's dorm room, St. John's University
Sarah doesn't hide her witchiness but she doesn't advertise it either. Even in college people aren't as tolerant as they like to think they are. And those that /are/ tolerant, just think that it is all a joke and she probably just reads fortunes while wearing a shawl. So the true extent of her powers and how serious she is, she only tells a few. But in the world of Alternate Beliefs it is known. If Lucian is looking for some knowledge then her name would have come up and she has agreed to meet him at her dorm room. He won't be the first strange guy in there.
Sarah greets him in a simple t-shirt and jeans - no shawls, no bangles, no bandanas. "Hey. You're Lucian? Come on in."
Lucian is dressed in a similar manner, with the addition of a leather jacket that is rather too battered to look in any way Satanist. But he's got the long gothic hair going for him, anyway. Straightening up as the door opens, he briefly glances her over before giving a faint smile and inclining his head "Thanks for making time" he murmurs, moving past her into the dorm.
"My pleasure" Sarah smiles, closing the door to her room behind them. It is a shared room by the look of it - two beds for a start but only one of them seems used. "I understand you're interested in learning about witchcraft. /Proper/ witchcraft. Not just the movie shit. Is that right? And mind if I ask why you're interested?"
Lucian glances over the room with a vague hint of nostalgia before focusing on her again. "Because..." he hesitates, leaning against a wall as he frowns thoughtfully. "Because I'm missing something. I've walked my own path in these matters. Got closer to closer to the source of whatever it is that makes us all more than beasts. But in the center of it all.. it all gets a bit too refined, too abstract. I need a more visceral approach. Something that directly connects the material and the spiritual..."
Sarah nods solemnly to his words. "Witchcraft is certainly visceral" she accedes before sitting herself down on the seat in front of the study desk. "Have a seat. Would you like a drink or something? Thing is, Lucian, witchcraft isn't about power. Some might even say it is more about the beast in us than rising above the beast. What I mean by that is that it is very much a natural thing. That earthy physicality makes it so, you know? Which path have you walked?"
Lucian smiles faintly as he sits down, waving away the offered drink. "Mmm. I would argue everything is about power in some way. It's just that we've given the word such a sinister connotation. To understand, to discover our own truest impulses in order to follow them... that too is power of a kind." He brushes a strand of hair from his face "I have been seeking knowledge from... well, depends on your interpretation. From Beyond? From Below? From Within, probably. The Depth is what I call it, but I am sure it lurks behind a dozen names. And it speaks to just the things you say. The most... inherent, human drives which lurk in all of us, which combine us in ways we can barely fathom. I have been trying to understand that connection, but I first have to understand the passion, the emotion and the raw magic of which they are made."
"We all seek knowledge...I am in college after all. It is how we apply that knowledge that matters. Your path has not given you the knowledge you seek or do you not like the way it is applied? I'm sure you've heard all about how witchcraft is visited upon you thrice what you give out. So if you do good, you get heaps good back. Do bad...not so pleasant. And that applies to 'power' too...especially the stuff with bad connotations. I don't do what I do to hold sway over others. I do what I do because...well...to help others and because there is a primal 'need' in my soul to be part of this. We don't use books much. What we teach is an oral tradition bestowed on those who need to be on this path. Almost like a family. Is that the kind of thing that would interest you? If it is just knowledge you are after then read a book. If you wish to take this path then it is more than just that. It is /doing/."
Lucian gives an almost involuntary smile as he murmurs "Doing is all I have ever sought. Creating. That, ultimately, is the one power worth striving for. It is knowing and acting and living and being, all at once. And of course what you create is yourself, over and over. Like you said. Yourself forms your actions, and your actions form the fate that rolls back onto you. I have read books trying to intellectualize everything, and I have interpreted barely intelligible signs from deeper states of being. What I need is the hard-worn practical wisdom of those following the powers as they are actually are in the world of flesh and blood and sweat."
Sarah considers his words; her lips in a pout of concentration. "I've never really tried to teach anyone before" she admits. "I'm sort of worried I'll fuck it up." Or teach the wrong person. A deep breath before she glances at the door. "My roomie will be back soon and we have a radio show to do tonight so...let me show you some basics. Just things that underpin it all...at least how I understand it." She moves to retrieve a box from under one of the beds and opens it up to reveal numerous bits and pieces - candles, ointments, animal bones and lord knows what. "Oh, you have to be naked for this" she asides before looking at him. "Kidding!"
Lucian cranes his neck, watching the paraphernalia with vivid interest. He blinks, glancing up at her and grinning faintly "Wouldn't be the weirdest thing I've heard. All about the symbolism, and all that." He sits up a little, looking back down to the box "Y'know, you haven't said anything about what you'd like in return..."
"What makes you think I want anything in return?" Sarah asks with a faint smile. "If you use this for good then isn't that enough? After all, we just talked about good and bad being returned. If I did this for greed, what I would get back wouldn't be very nice." She arrays some of the objects on the bed and lights a candle. "To be honest, I usually do this naked" she admits with a laugh before getting down to business.
Lucian smirks faintly, a playful glint in his eyes but he bites back any further comment he might make. Nodding faintly he murmurs "So this is your way of spinning the thread of your own fate, as it were?" He shifts forward on his seat, leaning in to watch closely.
"I don't spin any threads. I merely tap into what is available" Sarah shrugs. "Sure, I can guide fate a little. You know, get lucky as it were, but it is not up to me to tamper with others. That's important, Lucian. This isn't about control, it is about unity." Closing her eyes she starts to chant, one hand over a candle, the other over a non-descript bone.
Lucian nods faintly, his brows knit in a thoughtful frown. He keeps watching the flame as he listens to her intently, perhaps hearing another voice whispering along as he tries to follow the weave of the magic.
Sarah shows him what she has learned. How the rituals of witchcraft work with all their blood, sweat and tears. It may be better for laundry bills if they /were/ naked. "This is just simple. A basis for spellcrafting" she explains, perspiration glistening on her dark skin. "What you make it is up to you and your conscience."
Lucian follows along attentively, never complaining or flinching when the rituals grow messy. The sacrificial aspects he seems to grasp almost intuitively, starting to recognize the pattern that his otherworldly patron first pushed him toward. "I think I see" he says softly, breathing deeply. "The potency of life itself, drawn toward the spots most susceptible to change. Like roots splitting rocks..."
"I guess" Sarah nods after some consideration. "But what you also have to remember to ask is if that change needs to be done. Is it a change for everyone and everything or is it just for you? If the latter...that is not good and it should not be done." She wipes the sweat from her brow. "Shyla is going to kill me about making this mess" she giggles before looking at her student. "Intention is everything, Lucian. It is important."
Lucian nods faintly "Everything that affects one, affects all, sooner or later" he muses, his gaze distant. "And vice versa, I suppose." Straightening up, he blinks a little, drawing himself back to the real world as he gives her a soft smile "Thank you for your insight. Let me help with the cleanup? Seems like the least I can do..."
Sarah waves a dismissive hand. "Nah, it's cool" she smiles about the clean-up. "The least you can do is remember what I said today. These arts are not about you." She blows out the candle. "I'll be watching you, Lucian. Well...sort of. If you need anymore help then you come and see me. Anytime. If you cause trouble then I guess you'll see me."
Lucian tilts his head faintly, his expression growing unreadable at that warning. Eventually he gives a slow nod "Thank you" he says again. "And good luck to you" he gives another faint smile, getting to his and thoughtfully heading for the door.