A bit further in this tale of Temptations… The Queen of the Succubi gives what you want, but really, was it what you wanted?
I was sorely tempted to simply dispell the block, take the spell and burn my way out of the library, I probably could, but I really didn’t want to make enemies. So, instead, I looked at Tera and said,
“I’m really not interested in Eternity. I happen to like this world. What’s the joke?”
Tera considered him for a moment and then said, “Firstly… I thank you for not making a mess of things here… You have what you wanted…. You have the answers in front of you… If you wish, you may simply stand up…. Say goodbye and leave with your answers under your arm…”
Her tail came around from behind her and then she said, “Most do like the world they are in… Your problem is that you have more than one reality to deal with now…. There is no joke…”
She leaned forward and tapped the word immortality on the page. Then with a small smile she said, “Eternity is such a very long time… You cast the spell beneath those words and you will have an eternity to ponder the poem….” The warm glow in her eyes faded as she continued, “That is the cold hard fact my dear…”
She then said, “It’s not a fun thing to spend eternity alone without someone that can understand the losses that you feel as time goes on… It’s hard to watch something great be built and then just ashes in the winds…. Steel yourself for that time… It will come…. Sooner than you might wish…”
She drew her finger from the upper right corner of the open book to the lower left and then the poem disappeared revealing the words of the spell to him. She looked at him and said, “The spell awaits you… Cast well…”
Something was definately wrong here. I couldn’t figure out the trap, however. It was possible that the goal itself was the trap, since immortality is both a blessing and a curse, but what if…
“What about the price you mentioned earlier? Or are you tossing me a freebie?”
Tera considered him and said, “If you need to ask the price, then you might not have the means to pay it.” She stood up and then stretched, her tail flexing as she did. She took a few steps and then said, “Do I need to make it a freebie or not? Is the gift or curse itself the loss? It is all in fact a gain? Or could it be something else again? Why is it that something given freely is a curse? Something fought for is worse?”
She stopped in the middle of the space and then waved her right hand. A ring of magic surrounded them both and she said, “Cast the spell. Here and now. Take that step. Go on. Take it. And then…”
A hand wave in his direction, “Then it will or won’t be… Won’t it?”
She considered a moment and then added, “Or perhaps something else…. What will it be?”
Well, it was the reason I came, anyway. But still, I really didn’t expect all the theatrics.
So be it then. I wanted to survive, after all.
I began the casting, and all the light seemed to leave the room.
The light left the room as the spell was cast. All that remained for light was the book he read from and Tera’s glowing green eyes…
The darkness swirled and shrieked as it clawed around him angered and hungry….
Tera watched as his clothing was stripped from his body leaving him bare in the middle of the circle….
Then the blackness split into four arcs and pressed into him… Merging with him….
And then recoiled with a scream of displeasure…
There was a massive burst of grey light and then the sound of a body crumpling to the floor….
The light came fully back into the room as Tera moved over to him and fell to her knees. She placed his head in her lap and watched him shiver and flinch as the result of the spell was made clear…
Well… We hope it will be clear., but then clarity is never a sure thing…