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Auroris

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James sighed as he arrived home. He was physically and mentally exhausted. He looked around the flat but couldn't find any sign of Kyle. He was relieved if he was honest. The idea of trying to calm him down while he was in this condition was not appealing. 

Slowly he made his way toward the bedroom. Without thinking, or even bothering to remove his clothes he collapsed onto the bed and fell straight to sleep. 

A little while later Kyle wandered in to the flat. Humming to himself. It had been a good day. He wandered into the bedroom and saw James laying spread eagled. He smiled to himself and gently began to undress him before tucking him into bed. 

"You are such a lightweight" he chuckled. He wandered into the living room and went about his business being sure to keep quiet and not wake James. Once he'd done what he needed to he got ready and cuddled up close to James. He enjoyed these moments. 

Before long there where two people snoring contentedly. 

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James got up out of the bed and looked around. The bedroom was empty. His head was pounding. Something didn’t feel right. The bedroom was often empty, usually because Kyle was out of town because heaven knew that he never got up early but this was different somehow. He searched for his clothes and began to get frustrated when there was none in sight. Even the wardrobe was empty.

“Kyle” He yelled “Is this some kind of a joke? Because it’s not funny” He sighed. It’s just as well he was at home and not at a hotel. Coffee. He could figure out what was going on over a cup of coffee. He wandered into the open plan kitchen and looked for signs of life. It was worryingly quiet. Usually Kyle left some kind of mess when he left the house. But the place was bordering on clinically clean. He shuddered and wished he had more than his boxers on.

He tried to use the coffee maker. No matter what buttons he pressed it wouldn’t respond. He sighed. Of course. No wonder Kyle had tidied up. He’d broken something. He made his way to the fridge. Fine, orange juice. Kyle couldn’t mess up that could he? As he reached for the door a shooting pain ran through his arm. He jumped back, startled. What the hell was going on here?

A voice suddenly boomed around his skull. It had an odd quality to it, apart from the fact that it didn’t seem to belong to any living thing and had bypassed his ears. It was angry and seemed to be coming from everywhere at once.

You think you are worthy? You think you can force yourself upon us?

James walked calmly over to the sofa and sat down.

“Force is such a strong word” He replied calmly. This was clearly a dream. At some point he was going to wake up and he’d actually be able to get some coffee.

We choose, your motives are not worthy

“They aren’t? He will be no use to you when I die. But what is one life to you? As long as he does what you want. But that’s the thing. Without me he won't. You don’t see individuals, and that is why this choice makes no sense to you” James smiled to himself

Your decision is unwise. It will not end well.

“It is not your decision to make. You can either work with us or against us. But one way or another this will happen” James sighed. “And right now I’m aware that I am talking to my subconscious, I am also aware that I would like coffee. So unless you intend to let me use the coffee machine I’m calling this dream” He got up and began to wander back to the bedroom

There will be repercussions.

“There always are” James shut the door and lay back down on the bed, he noticed that Kyle was laying there now. Further proof that this was just his exhausted mind worrying about how he would be accepted by those chosen by Gaia. He curled up next to Kyle and sighed. He decided not to mention this to Auroris. He’d probably read too much into it. He chuckled to himself. At least this time he managed to keep his underwear.

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It had been a few weeks. The initial side effects of vomiting and nausea had passed pretty quickly. The doctor in him knew that he should be more concerned and he should be making notes. But it was his emotions were driving him. 

He had managed to calm Kyle down and reassure him that everything was OK. That these were just initial side effects. If there were worse symptoms it may be more difficult to placate him though. 

He may need to discuss the possibility of arranging alternative accommodation for the purposes of "medical observation" if it was needed. 

He picked up his phone and quickly typed out a message to Auroris. 

Time for phase two? The headaches seem to be few and far between at Sanctuary headquarters so I have time. A little warning before you summon me would be nice though.

He sat down and made himself comfortable. 

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James sat in the back of the car that had arrived to pick him up. The blacked out windows meant that he had no way of knowing where he was headed and somehow he had no reception so he couldn't trace his journey trough the maps app on his phone. He sighed and leaned back and began to work on his cases on his tablet. Just as well he had them downloaded so he could work on them offline.

He noticed that the car seemed to make multiple stops where the driver's door appeared to open briefly and then shut again. He sighed. This was dramatic even for Auroris.

After some time and what he assumed was multiple hand-overs the car finally pulled up and the door opened. A driver, indistinguishable from the one who had picked him up, ushered him out of the car and before he could take in his surroundings silently marched him into a large hallway, where he left James alone.

After a while, another random person escorted him towards a door and ushered him through it before locking it closed behind him. He sighed. Next time he would have to ask for the odd travel thing that Auroris did, this charade was tiresome. Although it may be that this was all necessary to rule out Auroris's Magics causing issues with the tests. He made his way down the stairs and found himself in the familiar surroundings of the lab.

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"Would I know if I had taken any?" James laughed. "I trust that charade was to rule out your magics interfering with the process? Once we do can we return to the quicker version. The car is much too dull." He looked at Auroris, barley a flicker had crossed his face at the mention of his magics. "I read an interesting document by a Miss Rose and then discovered the original it was based on" He smiled "Fascinating stuff" He wandered over to the lab equipment. 

"So what is our course of action today doctor Auroris?" He laughed

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Auroris    160

Well, given the level of discomfort you were experiencing last time, other magical influences have to be excluded. I've installed additional magical shielding. A magical faraday cage, if you will. It should be effective against all forms of magic, not just anima. Once we have determined if your discomfort was due to external interference or a bad reaction, we can continue.

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James sighed. "I had a negative reaction. A side effect, nothing worse than the symptoms some of my patients display when I give them a course of tablets." He folded his arms and glared at Auroris. "In most cases the side effects do not last more then a few days and the benefits outweigh the mild inconvenience." He carried on. "If I didn't treat every patient who presented side effects I would never cure anyone." 

"I have been monitoring my condition." He said calmly "As I'm almost certain you have too." He eyed Auroris suspiciously. "The side effects were temporary. No worse then those presented by someone who switches to a new medication. They lasted for precisely two days. I am fine now and have had no further adverse affects." He glared at Auroris.

"I anticipate two possible outcomes to further doses. Either similar side effects lasting for a similar time frame, or more likely no further side effects as my body has adapted." He began tapping his feet impatiently. "I am not concerned, Auroris. I am surprised that you are. I do want to carry on and get the started."

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Auroris    160

Concerned is not the word I would use. It's entirely possible it was a natural reaction. If external magical influences are a factor though, it needs to be eliminated. Doing that sooner rather than later is the most sensible course of action.

Now, shall we get started?

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