5776/What goodies may be found

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What goodies may be found
Date of Scene: 29 March 2021
Location: Amanda's personal magical library. One of them.
Synopsis: Loki spends some time in Amanda's library. He's visited by the lady of the tomes, and an annoying discovery is made. Who does that?!
Cast of Characters: Loki, Amanda Sefton

Loki has posed:
Libraries. So very much the same yet so very, very different. Each mage, every soul who considers themselves to be a practitioner of the arts has one, and within each collection is a reflection of what the mage deems to be important. It is as personal as a fingerprint.

And there Loki is, looking in the stacks, his hands behind his back as he checks the spines of the books. Those old 'published' tomes with titles are passed over; it's the personal, handwritten things within the unmarked books that tend to find his fancy.

Reaching out for a velum covered tome, he's gentle with it, almost reverent as he opens it, slowly moving the pages forward, his gaze skimming over the words found before him. Noises emerge, mostly, 'hmmmm' and the occasional bit of disappointment before it's placed back upon the shelf where he'd found it.

Amanda Sefton has posed:
Amanda has spent considerable time since she left her mother's caravan collecting these tomes. Some of them, she knows are of little consequence to most studies -- entry-level at best, or so esoteric in their thinking that they're really not good for much more than acting as examples in lateral thinking. Then again, in magic, that's a very good skill to cultivate. But, like most magic users, she's not yet prepared to give them up. One day, perhaps. Not this day.

She enters the library through a portal out of her apartment, stepping through on sileng feet. The moment she crosses the threshhold, she can sense the Mischief-Maker's presence. It changes the comfortable stillness of her little pocket reality. Electrifies it in a subtle way that changes the feel of it against her skin and within her consciousness. A faint grimace briefly touches her lips. She wipes it away with a focused breath and a purposeful release of tension along her spine.

Her shoulders drop down, her back straightens, and her posture morphs into the relaxed wont of a Lady within her own demesne. Which, really, she is.

She has no doubt he'll find the affectation amusing at best; she doesn't care. It makes her feel better. And, really, she's just here to find some clue as to how to get her current spiritual houseguest to Go Into The Light. That almost make her happier than Loki going back to Asgard.

*Almost*. Nothing's actually that good, though.

Loki has posed:
Loki doesn't even look up, doesn't look to the side, as green eyes search the shelves further down, squatting to catch those on the bottom. Dust is never a 'thing' in a magical library, and so doesn't even have to theatrically blow any off as he reaches for another, pulling it out and perusing it carefully if not quickly.

As she approaches, his attention is still upon the words, the pictographs held within the book, "Interesting collection you have, Ms Sefton." Hard to tell if he's mocking it or if it's actually an honest statement.

"Little gems here and there. Too spread out, I think, but worth the digging."

Closing the pages once again, he sets the book back in its spot on the shelf before rising to full height and turning to face her, finally. He's in his green leathers, neat and regal looking, his hair combed back away from his face. "I did promise I wouldn't remove anything."

Amanda Sefton has posed:
"Yes," Amanda agrees. "You did. And I appreciate that." She's far more mundanely dressed -- designer jeans, a short-sleeved cashmere top, and a cotton pashmina about her shoulders. Hair loose over her shoulders, faintly toussled from the day. "But I'm not actually here to check up on you."

Believe it or not. Not, mind, that she won't... well... check up on him since they're both here. No sense wasting the opportunity.

As for how spread out the library is to his liking... well, she usually just calls the information she's looking for to herself. Spells she learned off of a Librarian, actually -- a cataloguer who also happened to be witchblooded, and who worked in the stacks at her university library. She chooses not to share that particular trick, just now. Though it will certainly make finding the information she's looking for right now a wee bit harder.

Loki has posed:
Loki actually has all his libraries (plural) cataloged and memorized. Everything in its place. As a result, all he has to do is to walk to a certain spot, and the information he requires will be right at his fingertips. Specifics, well.. a call for information would be handy, but currently Loki is actually more than happy to do things in a calm, casual way. After all, it's not //his// emergency. It's his brother's.

And considering the way he's been treated by Thor lately? The oaf is lucky he's helping him.

Loki's back to looking on the next set of shelves when Amanda makes her pronouncement, and his reach for a book is forestalled as he looks to the side where the mistress of the library stands, his brows rising. "Oh? To what do I owe the pleasure of your company, then?" Is he being sarcastic?

Hard to tell with him.. with the easy lilt to accented words, it could be hiding a myriad of things.

"Do tell."

Amanda Sefton has posed:
"Random crazy happenstance," Amanda replies, a smile on her face as she gives a mild shrug. "It *is* my library, after all. I do actually use it, on occasion." She moves slowly along the shelves now, scanning the titles casually.

Her head cants and she glances back to him. "Perhaps I can help you find what you're searching for?" Truth be told, she does know the lay out of her library well enough to find most things on her own. This isn't a library of Asgard. It isn't *that* big. And every tome in it was placed by her own hand. She knows her own organization system, after all.

Loki has posed:

The word is spoken so plainly, so generally that even he feels the need to elaborate. Loki pauses, then adds, "More specifically, souls. Midgardian souls." After all, he //knows// about the other stuff, but there are so many different philosophies that it's hard to determine who goes where. "The existance, the banishment."

Loki studies Amanda's face as if he's looking for an answer there, but has to be content with waiting for an answer. In that moment of silence between question and answer, he twists to gesture at the books, the holdings, the small artefacts that dot the counters, the empty spots on the shelves, "While I find your collection eclectic, and am enjoying learning your prints, I only have so much time here alloted to me."

Amanda Sefton has posed:
Nothing Loki says reassures Amanda in the least. A brow arches, however, at his topic -- especially given her own search. "Human souls aren't usually banished," she says, since she's done some modicum of research on the matter. "They can be displaced, they can be trapped, and they can be transferred, but they're not demons to be banished." A beat. "Not from this plane, anyway. This is their home plane, after all."

She purses her lips slightly, moving towards the section she would have to have gone to eventually, anyway. "It's complicated by the human concept of afterlife. Heaven, Hell, Limbo, Elysium, Tartarus, Nirvana, Valhalla -- which, okay, yes, they got from Asgard... Still. I'm sure you get the point. All these other realms, once a human soul is severed from its body, can become that soul's home. And that doesn't even get into the question of poltergiests, revenants, or other spectral transformations."

Eventually, she finds the the section she was looking for and peruses the tomes. She pulls out a blue book with gold embossing, its pages thin and worn, but the writing on it clear and fresh. "There are a bunch of theories about it. This book has some information." Not necessarily the information she's looking for, however.

Loki has posed:
Death is not Loki's course of study; he has always left this sort of thing to the Valkyries, but seeing as they may or may not be involved, it makes it a touch more problematic. And while Thor's antics in front of Midgardians is annoying, it's not potentially dangerous. Doing such things in front of Valkyries, however, would make things a whole lot more difficult for him.

He listens politely, emerald eyes locked to Amanda's face as she talks. He's attentive, intently so, and as she begins to respond, he's leaning froward as if to gain more information a little faster. A book.. that's all he wishes. He truly is the studious brother of the pair. Libraries are his world.

Loki takes the book, offered or not, though it's a gentle removal. A step back is taken, and he opens the tome, his hand holding the pages in place before he moves to turn them. Turning around, his back to Amanda, a couple of steps are taken away, more intent upon the writing upon the page than conversation at the moment. It does seem as if he's finding something as it holds his attention longer than a few seconds.

"Interesting, your race.." is murmured absently.

Amanda Sefton has posed:
Which is fine by Amanda. She's not really sure why she provided the lecture, anyway. She shakes her head, once he's turned away, suppressing a snirk. No sense drawing his attention back to her. She turns away, as he starts focussing on the tome's pages, starting to scan the shelves for what she needs. And once she's found a book she thinks will help, she pulls it out and moves farther away from him to read it.

It doesn't particularly help that she's got Sister Phillis freaking out in the back of her head. Hey, the Chitauri attack wasn't what killed her. She remembers the trouble Loki caused.

"<<First the Devil and now his brother?! Amanda! You will surely damn yourself!>>" It's entirely an internal conversation.

Even though it makes Amanda want to sigh. "<<The Light, Phillis. Please... *please* go into the Light. Leave me to manage my own soul.>>"

Loki has posed:
Loki takes a couple more steps to find a spot to sit down, the book cradled. It's a hint, then, in how long he's planning on spending with this particular book. Slowly, the pages turn, and his brow creases as eyes narrow in the reading of the information on the page. Page turned, one more, then back.. and forth before he looks up from his spot.

"I think someone took a page from your book." The words rise from his spot, and in double checking, goes two pages back and three pages forward, before looking up again and shrugging. Loki puts his hand out as if to show that there is nothing there; he didn't take it.. and chuffs in an annoyed breath.

"Don't tell me you're hiding things from me.."

Amanda Sefton has posed:
Amanda turns sharply from her own perusal of a book. "What?" She places the book she was looking at back in its slot and strides towards him. "Let me see." She doesn't actually wait for him to give her the book. She takes it from his hands and runs her finger along the inside of the binding. She whispers a soft spell in the Romani language. The shadows of the pages flutter through her hand, never coalescing enough to be read. Not by her power, anyway... which is still ebbing low, though not so badly as it was.

"I'm not hiding anything from you," she tells the Asgardian darkly, thrusting the book back at him. "I don't know who took the pages. But, I will concede they're missing." She's not actually sure he didn't take them when she had her back turned; she wouldn't put it past him. But it doesn't do to break deals like they've made. And he's always dealt fairly with her in the past.

"Which isn't to say I won't look for them." She just won't promise easy success. Or success at all.

Loki has posed:
If she'd seen the brief expression of confusion and then annoyance that had flickered across his face, she may be at least somewhat mollified that he hadn't taken them. Loki glances at the pages before and after once more, once the book is given back and it is indeed verified that something is missing. He, too, is annoyed; stealing pages from books is something that simply isn't done. If one wants a book, one steals it in its entirety, or makes a copy. Stealing a page is, well, it has no purpose.

"And well you should," Loki agrees. As for success in finding the culprit? Who knows how long it's been gone?

With a chuffed breath of annoyance, Loki goes back to discerning the book, putting the sigils together, the stories, the brief folklore in the 'no s* there I was' lines throughout it recounted by others before.

Finally, after making the grand attempt to try and gleam what it was that is missing, Loki closes the book and sets it upon a side table before rising. "Your company has been a pleasure, but I fear I must go. I'll be back to continue to read through that, but if anything else strikes you, feel free to add to the pile." His personal librarian?

Not hardly.

Amanda Sefton has posed:
Not hardly.

Amanda gives the Asgardian a tight smile. "If anything else strikes me," she agrees, if vaguely, since she doesn't actually finish echoing the statement. So chances are there won't be much added to the pile. Something would have to strike her pretty hard.

Still, since it's clear he's leaving she can be cordial a little while longer. "Farewell, Loki." A beat. "Good luck in helping Thor." That, anyway, is sincere.

She likes Thor. He's a decent guy.

Then, however, she stalks back toward the book she'd been looking at, slips it from the shelf, and heads back towards the spot where her portal briefly existed earlier.