They don’t listen. She had known that perhaps they wouldn’t—that perhaps her warning would fall on deaf ears. She had known that they had warmonger hearts and a thirst for chaos and the plea of a magician would do little to stem the tide of what is to come. She had known that they would not release the captives that remained within Tephra or begin to walk down a different path of what is good and right.
But, even she has to admit she was surprised by how quickly they retaliated.
She had no sooner magicked Cress back into Tephra—into safety—then they snatched her back again. And it was her husband’s hand who did the thieving, no less. The fury that fills Leliana when she rises and realizes what has transpired is holy and fierce and it sluices through her as she narrows her golden eyes.
Without hesitating, she wraps a current of warm Tephran air around her and pulls it inward. She blinks out of existence in her home and onto the border of Loess. Her face is stony, her features carved from rock, and she does not waste time in letting her power slam into the ground beneath her feet.
Maybe they feel the reverberations of it echo throughout their home.
Maybe they don’t.
Regardless, Loess begins to curl around her clenched fist as she takes the same power that she had buried in its soil and yanks it upward. With it come thorns and trees as wide as a horse. Rocks tumble into place and bramble weaves itself together. The ground shudders as vines and thorn shoot forth, as branches tighten into knots, as the walls of it become interlaced with hemlock and nightshade and oleander.
The ground becomes littered with poisonous white snakeroot.
It feels fitting.
Sweat beads on her neck and grass weaves up her legs and when she is done, a significant portion of their home is no longer wide, open expanses but a maze of thorn and trees. Some areas are covered with a canopy so thick that the sun can’t make its way through. Others are merely a never ending pattern of switchbacks and colliding trails and paths that lead to no where. It is not deadly—save for the poisonous plants that she weaves throughout it (although she makes each one hard as stone and impossible to eat).
It is not deadly, but it is a warning shot.
“Release Cress. Release any soul here who doesn’t wish to remain.”
She lets her words ripple through the wind that she sends billowing through Loess.
“This is the final time I ask.”
When her voice fades, she begins to sway slightly on her feet, the fatigue marrow deep. With spots blinking in front of her eyes, she grabs the wind again, pulling it inward to her navel and disappearing.
loess now is covered (not completely) by a large, twisty maze.
we have upgraded from the world's most aggressive british baker to the world's most aggressive gardener.
(corn maze of doom cleared with aeris and officers.)