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Year 8 of Braska's Calm

Day 1:  Choices
Day 20: Lady Ginnem?
Day 25: Chappu's Reaction
Day 26: Ginnem's Arrival
Day 27: Besaid Cloister
Day 29: Chappu's Goodbye
Day 30: To Kilika
Day 32: Kilika Island
Day 33: Concering Sin
Day 34: Luca
Day 35: Mi'hen Highroad
Day 39: Mushroom Rocks
Day 41: Djose Shore
Day 42: Djose Cloister
Day 43: Concerning Magic
Day 44: Bevelle Festival
Day 50: Still in Bevelle
Day 52: Macalania Forest
Day 54: Of Summoners Past
Day 56: Lake Macalania
Day 57: Macalania Temple

Final Fantasy X characters, setting, locations, and original images/screencaps of Spira © Square-Enix. Photomanips and this journal created by Helluin.

Day 43, 8th Year of Braska's Calm

It's a good thing Lady Ginnem knows her way around the Djose archive room. One would think that priests with their strict discipline, not to mention acolytes and orphans in need of chores and punishments, would have their scrolls more neatly organized! I have always made certain that Besaid's modest collection is efficiently maintained.

I could have spent days copying out certain passages, but out of deference to Lady Ginnem I restricted myself to the black magic section. There weren't many scrolls on that topic; priests and nuns generally incline towards gentler forms of magic, healing and restoratives.

I did run across one fascinating monograph on the Lightning Rocks, and was sorely tempted to take it with me. A scholar by the name of Maechen spent several years in Djose observing the rate of the rocks' spin and the visible effects of electricity, trying to correlate them with the experience of the Summoner, the number of Aeons he or she had already attained, Sin's activity and level of destructiveness, and various other factors. The text was painfully pedantic, and in the end he was forced to concede that there was no surefire way to predict a Summoner's success from the lightning's manifestations, but there was one section concerning the nature of Ixion's power which gave me food for thought.

Maechen spoke of the currents running through the earth, something he called "potential energy", and the relationship between time and space. He stated that Elemental magic may be channelled in three ways: through the innate power of the caster (which in an Aeon is considerable), by tapping into the earth's currents and energies, or -- here is a puzzling thought! -- by bending time back on itself, so that something that once happened may still be happening. Collapse time, and a lightning bolt from a winter storm that struck four hundred years ago may be now again. Spira is a world of spirals and cycles, from the wheel of the seasons to the migrations of birds, so this is not quite as far-fetched as one would think.

Therefore, like a Summoner drawing Fayth from a statue, a skilled black mage may awaken the landscape's memories of past events, of a lightning's strike or an ancient deluge, of a wildfire, volcanic eruption, or glaciers marching across the land. The latter two are probably the most difficult, for one must reach much farther back in time. I had already sensed that the land itself is moving -- slowly, slowly, ever so slowly -- but it had never occurred to me that all lands must have passed through hot and cold zones, and even Besaid may have been where Gagazet is now, many eons ago.

I do not know if I will ever be able to tap those deep memories of soil and atom to unleash thundaga and firaga, but I have begun to discover the second form of energy Maechen talked about, the currents of magic flowing through earth and sky. There is so much more energy in Spira than in my own body! A mage who draws only upon her own inner power is quickly exhausted; Spira loans much more. I must continue to work on my focus so that I can draw on and wield those energies. That is the secret to blizzara and watera, and if only I can master those, I am sure even an Ochu will present little difficulty. Unfortunately, while I have begun to be able to sense Spira's pulse, the currents and magics of the natural world, I still don't understand how to tap into them.

I found one other scroll that helped clarify what happened to me the day we were ambushed. Apparently, as one uses black magic, a little bit of residual energy from each spell remains behind. Eventually it's discharged. Other forms of physical or mental stress -- the pain of wounds, the burst of confidence that comes with victory, even the distress of watching loved ones suffer -- may add to this residue. With practice, one may learn to channel that energy consciously, both its accumulation and its release.

So much for research. The motion of the ship is beginning to make me queasy; I had better see if Ginnem wants to go up on deck for a breath of fresh air. Tomorrow we reach Bevelle.

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