Monday, April 20, 2015

Page 1017

Chergoa floated in front of Emiliana’s face. ‘Open your eyes wide for me,’ the reaper said.

Emiliana tried and encountered resistance. Her eyes had been more sensitive to light ever since her power manifested, and now she had to struggle through the discomfort of forcing them open so wide. She could feel them twitching even more than earlier.

Yeah,’ said Chergoa. ‘Whether you want them to or not, your eyes are about to mutate. Try to guide the mutation.’

Emiliana grimaced. Impulsively, she wanted to ask how the hell she was supposed to do that, but she already knew. They’d gone over this already.

There was really only one trick to it. She needed to imagine the desired change clearly in her mind. Simple.

The catch, of course, was that if she imagined something too ambitious, her power would go crazy in an attempt to compensate and do something random, instead. Random--and probably horrific, she figured.

So she had to concentrate. On her eyes, apparently. She hadn’t realized that such specific mutations could occur on their own, but now wasn’t the time to be worrying about it. Her thoughts went to her studies. The book she’d been reading earlier.

The temptation was to imagine something like an avian eye, perhaps to enhance her ciliary muscles for more versatile lens movement, but she had to keep her limitations in mind. At the moment, her mutation power only allowed her to manipulate the protein known as keratin; and unfortunately, keratin didn’t have much to do with vision, unless she intended to grow hair on her eyeballs.

And for a few terrible seconds, that’s what she thought she might have to do. There was no stopping this change. She had to do something.

And then she recalled a structure in the eye which humans didn’t have but that certain animals like cats and dogs did: the tapetum lucidum. It sat right behind the retina and reflected light back through it, which ultimately increased night vision and made it look like the animals had glowing eyes in low light conditions.

That, at least, seemed like a better plan than eyeball-fuzz. The only problem was whether or not she could construct a tapetum lucidum out of keratin alone. She had no idea how feasible that was.

She supposed she was about to find out.

25 comments:

  1. Ooh She's starting to learn control over her power. Very exciting for the readers... and terrifying for her.

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  2. Mutation is definitely a creepy power and hard to accept. It will be interesting to see how far she can go with keratin alone.

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  3. Emiliana tried an encountered resistance.

    I think an should have been and.

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  4. Could a mutation user mitigate mutations by focusing on something really, really unambitious - say, a 0.1mm circle of keratin on her sclera.

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  5. When it says she can control keratin, does that mean that she can only mutate keratin? Or is that the only mutation she knows at the moment? And third question wasn't mutation considered the strongest power?

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  6. Nicolas Sagrillo de AraujoApril 20, 2015 at 11:04 AM

    Keratin is the only substance she can use as of now. Collision ability get the Pan-Wrzost hyper-state that gives them access to new substances. Presumably, other mutation users can use something else as their primary resource.
    Now addressing the last question: not really. One ability is not inherently more powerful than another because it is of one type or another, specially because Frost likes to play with the Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors and Logical Weakness trope. However, Bohwanox once asked if Alteration types were the most powerful abilities but Garovel quickly dismissed the idea, because there are many more factors involved in a fight than simply the ability of one's servant.

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  7. I think her power would want to be used more than that.

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  8. Vincent Atd[perspherspley]April 20, 2015 at 4:46 PM

    ‘Yeah,’ said [Cherga].

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  9. Yeah, if it won't take 0 for an answer, it probably won't take .00001 either.

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  10. Mutation used to be a real screw-over, and it still takes a lot of time a some potentially quite painful trial-and-error to master, but its pretty decent now. At least at the levels we've seen so far for the most part (0-50 years), I'd say that alteration and materialization seem to be the 800-pound gorillas, but that might just be because of chance, since Roman won the Superpower Lottery according to Voreese, and Hector has been getting boatloads of emergence to seem way stronger way sooner.

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  11. Nicolas Sagrillo de AraujoApril 20, 2015 at 6:26 PM

    Not to mention Gohvis...

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  12. (cilliary muscle) Extra l.

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  13. I can see the reading list for mutation users is basically "go to the nearest local medical school and find all the books for every first year module and start -- when finished, hit the second year's material and continue". :P

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  14. Veterinary and animal biology books too. She wouldn't have found the tapetum lucidum in a med-school textbook.

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  15. Pretty terrifying for some readers too actually. The entire messing with one's sight because some external power is forcing me to idea is ... very augh.
    Well done on eliciting a reaction, Mr Frost.

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  16. You can get some sweet stuff, but its the only one where you not only have to research scientific stuff to grow, you have to keep up with your power's "appetite" with new information or you might screw yourself over, perhaps quite dramatically.

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  17. What about Ghovis? He's a good example, but he certainly doesn't bring anything inherently new to the table. In fact, from what we've heard of him he seems pretty dull for the mightiest user of a power that is literally all about packing new tricks for the party. By that level, I'm pretty sure I would have bio-luminescence that could be soul-strengthened into lasers and some kind of natural gun that reloads with regeneration. On the other hand he might have survived for so long even though he started with less available science that he seems like he would need by being carefully unoriginal.
    Say, having survived for far longer than he should have, despite being crippled by a lack of scientific knowledge... Oh my god he's a Plan Nine From Outer Space reference!

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  18. The brain has been mentioned before, now I know why they would change it. Given that information now I better apreciate what I expect to come.

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  19. If you thought you had enough information, you might be willing to risk it willingly, since being superintelligent would confer some massive advantages.

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  20. Well, there's circumstantial evidence he has actual psychic powers.

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  21. I suppose there is that. Or maybe there isn't, we really can't tell yet. I'm sure Frost will explain it satisfactorily in his own good time.

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  22. Incase anyone wanted to know if this could work with eyes...
    http://comicfury.com/forum/viewthread.php?id=21605

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