Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

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Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Silvern Gleam on Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:26 pm

Hey there!

This character comes along with a shop for magical artifacts in the Undermarket that's been there since shortly after the occupation of Manehatten. The numbers of characters knowing about it is supposed to be limited, so this knowledge can only be achieved through RP or asking me first. If you could use artifacts, feel free to contact me, I'm happy about every customer!
Details regarding the shop are in the app.

Basic Information:
Name: Silvern Gleam, "Sil"
Species: Unicorn
Gender: Female
Age: 42 (Year 12)
Virtue: Diligence
Alignment: Rebels

Occupation: Before the war she was a specialist for artifacts and enchantments, now she’s more of a treasure hunter. She seeks all kinds of magical artifacts and hides them for when she sees fit to use them. Unfortunately, powerful artifacts are rare, so her collection doesn't contain many special items, apart from the custom modifications she did.

Appearance:
Height: 4'8
Coat Color: Yellow
Mane/Tail Color: Purple
Eye color: Silver
Usual Accessories: She always wears an amulet in the shape of a stylized eye, with a sapphire in the center. It's not often seen, in public she wears a white scarf to hide it. Apart from that, Silvern without the red hair band would also be a rather unusual sight.
Cutie Mark: To use her mentor's words: "Looks a bit like the amulet you’re wearing, but like a crude sketch with silver ink. Somehow alienated." ((She “sees” only the magical structure of objects, that’s what the cutie mark represents.))

Picture:


Special Talent - Magic Sight:
Sil is blind and uses her talent to “see”. In a world like Equestria everything has some magic inside it, and this she can sense; the more magic something contains, the clearer it appears to her.  This ability grants her a truly unique perception of the world, with advantages and drawbacks as well. Within close range she senses everything around her, though it lacks detail. To really get information about an object, she has to concentrate on it, but this way is able to increase her usual three meter range threefold. By reaching out like this she can also search for signatures she doesn't automatically sense, but unfortunately she has some troubles determining their exact location.

Magic sight isn't blocked by objects or walls, making it hard to hide from her once she's alarmed. It needs time for her to check the whole environment and she might miss something, but getting closer than three meters without her noticing is practically impossible at any time she's awake.

Active use of magic is a clear beacon for her. If anything is cast nearby, she'll know about it. While low powered spells like levitation are only visible to her within about 25 meters, this goes up to 100 meters for the most powerful ones. However, only getting within normal sight range allows her to reliably determine its function.

The biggest disadvantage Sil suffers, lies in the sensing of normal, mostly non-magical objects, especially small ones. When she doesn't watch out where she's going, it easily happens that she runs straight into the next wall, and she definitely isn't be able to sense a crossbow bolt in time to avoid it.

There's a similarity with the talents of Forte Sun and Mercy Heart, those characters actually made me porting Sil to Griffon Kingdoms. The way I see it, it's basically the same talent, but while Forte and Mercy can determine emotions from the magical aura of a living being, Silvern Gleam can only do so much as identify who it is, she can't tell what the subject feels or thinks.
Her big advantage is that her sense is strong enough to get incredibly detailed information about her magical environment, enabling her to determine what a spell does without even triggering it. Depending on complexity she could be busy for hours or days doing so, but everyday standard spells she recognizes instantly. Technically she also gets enough information about living beings to tell everything about them, if she understood it. In this case the complexity of the magical structures is way too high to make much sense of it, by now she has given up the attempt to figure it out. That's where Forte and Mercy have the advantage by intuitively reading emotions or more from the signature.

Second (not really "minor") Talent - Spell Manipulation:
Her own magic is relatively weak, she isn't able to create powerful spells, but she knows perfectly well how to deploy the power she has. An already fully standing spell or enchantment doesn't need more power than it already has, Silvern Gleam then only changes its signature to fit her own needs, or to destroy it. Like with badly constructed buildings, sometimes it's enough to destroy one pillar and everything falls apart.

Ability examples and uses:
To give you a better idea on what she does and can do:

- Gems as books: She has no concept of color, making conventional books completely useless to her without somebody reading them to her, but she has found a way to make her own books. She imprints tiny, magical signatures in gems, each signature representing a normal letter, ready for her to read again when she needs the information. Nopony else (or only _very_ few) can read it, most unicorns don't have nearly as detailed magic perception to even notice the manipulations Sil does, much less decipher them, but unfortunately it's incredibly easy to destroy the information again: Simply by forcing a spell on the gem (levitation wouldn't work since it doesn't change the magical structure of the gem). She's trying to find a way to put a protection spell on it without destroying the information, but no success so far.

- Intensify magical signatures: Working with normal, non-magical objects can be quite bothersome for her, as their low energy levels are hard to get information from. In locations she is often in, she usually begins filling up every possibly important item around with magic, only so that she would have an easier time sensing it. Depending on how much there is to do, this may be something she takes several days for, since her own magic is quickly depleted, but it's a onetime work. She knows how to make sure that the energy doesn't sicker out.

- Magic Surge: The spell carried by her necklace. It sends out a wave of magic into every direction, temporarily intensifying all magical signatures around, allowing Sil to see better. It requires her to constantly send energy into the amulet, but not nearly as much as its output would suggest. It draws most of the power it needs from its environment, but it's still quickly exhausting.

- Assisted casting: Sil's biggest problem is, that she doesn't have the power to do most spells, while she knows perfectly well how to do them. As a result, the power for a spell has to come from somepony else, and Sil only takes and manipulates it. However, it's not as easy as it sounds and requires a lot of training together, for it is easy to destroy her efforts during spell construction by accidently doing some own manipulation instead of only sending out energy, or giving out too much or too little energy at once. Currently she has nopony to help her with it.

- Enchantment protection: Different measures to protect an enchantment from manipulations or foreign use. In the most complicated case of a trigger protection the spell only reacts to the signature of a certain pony (or zebra or whatever). Sil hasn't encountered this case yet, but it could be possible that there are personal signatures similar enough to let both trigger the enchantment. However, such advanced manipulations are straining and take much time to complete.

- Spell optimization: With her large knowledge about magical reactions, she can make out where in a spell energy is wasted and improve it's performance. She usually doesn't spend too much time on it, the largest kinks are usually found and fixed fast, but if she requires a top result, it's once again something that can take days in complicated cases.

- Spell canceling: Sil's primary defense against other unicorns. Conjuring force fields or constructing other defensive spells isn't within her capabilities (without support, at least), and so she concentrates on deconstructing the spells of her opponent. In battle there are only split seconds to do it, and it's not a given that she succeeds. There are those unicorns who manage to construct stable spells, and those who would wonder why their horn suddenly doesn't work anymore.

History:
When being blind, a pony has to rely on the other senses to discover their surroundings and so they naturally become more sensitive, but in Silvern Gleam's case it had been quite different. No, she didn't improve her other senses, she developed a new one entirely. One would expect a little blind filly to bump into other ponies regularly, but she somehow managed not to. Others gave the credit to better hearing, but truth is: She simply knew. She didn't even notice where this knowledge came from, and since it appeared completely normal to her she didn't question it for a long time. However, she didn't have the same luck with walls and objects; she never knew where those were...

With the help of her parents, Sil had a mostly normal and happy foalhood in the outskirts of Manehatten. Though, when the help got too much, she got easily angered. It wasn’t like she couldn’t do things on her own, and if she had problems she would ask. If somepony didn’t take her for full, he’d have quite a tirade coming.

Once strolling through a part of town she hadn’t been in before, Sil suddenly… “felt” something, a strange, yet pleasant sensation coming from ahead. She felt attracted to it, and in her curiosity managed to walk straight into a shop window, shattering it completely. She shop keeper noticed this of course, a kind, old unicorn who instantly took her inside and treated the luckily few cuts she had suffered. The filly didn’t mind them at all and just sat there in amazement. The sensation became stronger every second and was now coming from all around her.
Sir, is there anything… “special” in this room?
Special? I guess you can call it that. You’re surrounded by magical artifacts, kid. Why do you ask?
Silvern Gleam didn’t answer. She stood up and slowly walked into the direction the feeling was strongest from and reached out with her hoof. She felt a small, edgeless stone embedded in a curved metal frame on a necklace.
It… It’s beautiful, she finally said, obviously completely astonished. Raising an eyebrow in surprise the old pony walked besides her and smilingly hanged it around her neck.
And it suits you! But I didn’t expect you to have a real concept of beautiful.
In fact, she hadn’t. She only knew that it described something nice, something pleasurable, and this surely described how she felt about the small ornament, so she just used the term without giving much thought to it.
I never want to leave this place.
Oh, that’s not good, he said laughingly. You still have to show your parents your cutie mark, I’m sure they’re curious about it!
I don’t have a… WHAT IS IT???
Looks a bit like the amulet you’re wearing, but like a crude sketch with silver ink. Somehow alienated.
Then it’s a good one, she grinned happily. Having such a wonderful thing as cutie mark, she really had no reason to complain. By now, she was able to distinguish all the artifacts from each other, and every single one of them was different, though some were quite similar. Some appeared boring to Sil, they were too simple or weak to attract her attention, but most of them were just exciting to examine, to let herself sink into this sensation and explore its nature. Unfortunately, there were too many. After some minutes the shop keeper interrupted her.
I can’t imagine how you experience your environment, but I’m already jealous, you seem to enjoy it a lot. But maybe you should go home now so that I can clean up your little accident, I’m sure somepony is waiting for you.
She opened the mouth to complain, but then realized that she really was expected home soon. Obviously not wanting to go, she only reluctantly took off the necklace.
You know what? Keep it. You just got your cutie mark from it; I think it belongs to you.
Instantly returning to beaming with joy she jumped at him and threw her forelegs around his neck.
Thanks, thank you!
There she was hanging for a few seconds, then headed for the door. Before leaving, she turned around a last time and touched the amulet. It was a magical artifact, but one big question had been left open.
What does it do?
I haven’t found out yet.

Later she found out what the artifact did: It sent out a magic pulse that works like a sonar for Sil. It works only as long as she keeps it activated, which is exhausting after only a very short time, but it allows her to get a very accurate (by her standard) picture of her environment.

After this experience, Silvern Gleam found her ability to be strong enough to even sense normal objects, though only vague and unreliable for small ones.
As to be expected, she visited the shop often, and eventually began an apprenticeship there. She had a natural advantage when it came to analyzing enchantments, and after only two years she completely surpassed her mentor. After his death, she moved to Canterlot where she opened her own shop “The Magic Eye”, as near to the castle as possible. The reason for this location was simple: The Elements of Harmony. Ever since she had heard of those legendary artifacts, she longed for “getting a look at them”.

This desire was never fulfilled. Instead she had to run for her life as the griffons took over the city, through streets already filled with debris she could hardly sense fast enough without constantly powering her artifact. She doesn't know how she managed to escape, but at some point she had found herself breaking down from exhaustion somewhere below the fallen capital. She joined a small group of ponies fleeing towards the eastern coast, towards Manehatten where her parents lived.

She didn't flee again when Manehatten was attacked. If she had run, she would have had to do so again, until eventually there would have been no place left to run to. This time she decided to hide, and hope that somehow the occupation wouldn't last forever. Until then, the griffons didn't really have an enemy in her, she just wanted to survive and somehow live her life, but there's no joy in living when everything held dear is ripped apart. Her old friends she hadn't seen since Canterlot, and now her parents had been taken by fire, laid of course by the invaders. Somewhat scorched herself she hid in the subway system until the battle was over, and stayed there afterwards, not knowing that the rebellion would eventually also chose the tunnels to hide. When today's Undermarket came into existence, she already had something she could call home down there, a good distance away from the really populated areas, but a true insider's tip for those who had complicated magical needs: Sil had saved some of her most important artifacts and continued collecting new ones, which she also customized to fit special requirements.

Personality:
Despite knowing quite well about her environment, Silvern Gleam often acts as if she had to rely on sound and touch, simply to hide her ability from others. Before the war this was mainly to make sure she wasn't creeping out her customers who could clearly see that she was blind, but knew more than eyes could ever tell. During the war, this wasn't as important anymore, but now she really didn't want others to know, for she knew that the griffon's wouldn't like her magic sight.

She usually is easy to deal with, as long as she doesn't get annoyed. Before the war she had learned to keep her composure even with difficult customers, but to a large part has given up on it again after the occupation of Manehatten. One easy way to get her annoyed is to give her unwanted help. Yes, she hides her full knowledge of her environment, but she makes sure not to appear to be in need of help, and as long as she doesn't ask for it, she prefers to do things on her own.

Sil never lost her enthusiasm for artifacts and can talk about them for hours and hours, but that's something only her friends come to experience to full extend. While she's doing business, she sticks to what is important right now and at least tries to keep her answers short and simple, as far as this is possible considering the quite complicated topic.

From time to time it happens that she doesn't show herself for days, then it probably means she has some major work to do. It's rare that she gets her hooves on an artifact that really challenges her in understanding it, but she also loves tinkering around with what she already has in her collection, modifying them until she doesn't have any more ideas what she could do.

She doesn't like to be rushed, she takes the time she needs to do a good job, and others should be thankful for that. But though she might need time, this time certainly will be well spent. If she knows that speed is of importance, the first thing that is cut is most likely her sleep, only when even that isn't enough she allows herself to reduce the quality of the work.

One of the biggest changes the war led to was that she lost her love for dark humor. While she once easily could joke about herself happily trotting off a cliff she didn't notice in time, now she can't do as much as muster a weary smile about it. It simply isn't funny anymore when fate is so cruel. But it would yet have work to do before Sil loses all joy of life entirely.

Shop "The Magic Eye:
Originally founded in Canterlot, it's now located in Manehatten's Undermarket. Silvern Gleam has converted an old maintenance tunnel to be her home and source of income. It's not easy to find and more of an insider's tip, but a good one, especially for unicorns. There are always some artifacts to be sold, from such that are only useful in daily life, to highly efficient weapons. But if you want the interesting stuff, she first has to trust you that you won't misuse it. Who never has been in her shop before, will never see the full assortment.

Those who have the luck to get an artifact into their hooves from somewhere else are also well advised to give Sil a visit. She can determine what it does and if there are any traps on it, as well as improve its function. And if the price is right, she'll buy it.

As long as she is out, and be it only for short time, she sets up traps to protect her belongings. The only warning customers receive is a magically locked door, which they shouldn't attempt to open for it could be last thing they do. Close friends are usually given small artifacts which allow them to pass through safely, making it a safe haven for those Sil deems trustworthy. For the case pursuers ever get past the protection, there's a ventilation shaft big enough for ponies to escape through, for most griffons, the shop would be a dead end.

Timeline:

Year 4, Oct 28, Afternoon: A Stellar Guide
Year 4, Oct 29, 3 pm: You have a deal!
Year 4, Oct 30, 3 pm: Confrontation
Year 4, Nov 8, 2:00 pm: Random Encounters: Quiet Deciet
Year 4, Nov 9, 3-4 pm: An Unusual Sight
Year 4, Nov 12, 6 pm: Rebellion is Brewing
Year 4, Nov 12, branches from Rebellion is Brewing: Guide through the Undermarket
Year 4, Nov 12, 10 pm: Sewing the seeds
Year 4, Nov 12, After Sewing the Seeds: About Forced Sales
Year 4, Nov 13, After About Forced Sales: A Light Bulb for the Blind
Year 4, Nov 14, Morning till evening: Seeking students (and a teacher
Year 4, Nov 15, Starting 8 am: First day at the job
Year 4, Nov 16, whole day: Lost and Found
Year 4, Nov 18, 2 pm: Magic Training: Placement Test
Year 4, Nov 20, 3 pm: A new offer
Year 4, Nov 20, evening: Back for More?
Year 4, Nov 22, 2 pm: Magic Training: Come, let me teach you!
Year 4, Nov 23, morning: For Freedom of Mind


Last edited by Silvern Gleam on Sat Jul 27, 2013 11:42 am; edited 22 times in total
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Silvern Gleam
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Alignment: Rebels
Profession: Artifact Merchant
Age: 42

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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Freyia on Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:56 pm

After reviewing it I find I like the concept a lot. There are a few things that I would like clarification for and might need to be changed to avoid being over powered:

1) "She has a complete surround view, it is practically impossible to sneak up on her and magic sight isn’t blocked by objects, so that she can see through walls."

This might prove to be a little too powerful. In a grimdark cityscape RP, hiding, stalking, and ambushes are very important, and if your character can see 360 degrees through obstacles, you would negate a lot of characters that rely on it to perform.

Maybe instead have a small range on it, so that it is a circle around you with a radius of like 10'. Or you can try what Forte has done, her ability does allow her to see all around without having to face any direction, but she has to focus on certain parts, similar to a searchlight, and increasing the radius of the focus requires more energy.

2)"Also it is impossible to cast any spell within close range of her without her noticing, stronger ones she can detect over a distance of several hundred meters."

Several hundred meters is a few football fields. How strong exactly would it have to be to sense that far. And how far can you sense normally, i.e creatures, artifacts, spell casting. This might prove to be a little strong depending on the range.

3) Your spells are interesting. I like that alone you are relatively weak, but in the presence of other magical auras you can manipulate them. Keep an eye to make sure you don't go too far with any of it. Same goes for your Enchanting skills.

Just either post here or PM me with your responses. Aside from these things I really like your character idea and can't wait to hear back from you.
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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Silvern Gleam on Sat Dec 22, 2012 8:30 am

Overpowered? How ist that overpowered? [/irony]
You pretty much mentioned the points I expected, she's coming from a site where stealth wasn't that important, and I had the advantage that everybody there knew how I can handle overpowered characters (my chars tend to be like that^^). I suppose I can tone her down a bit.

1) I don't like the thought of her skill constantly requiring energy, she quickly runs out of power anyway, and I definitely want the 360 degree view. But, here's a compromise: Without doing anything, she sees everything in a short radius around her, not enough to detect each and every ambush, but enough to notice somebody sneaking up on her before there's no time to duck away anymore. We're talking about a distance of... 3 meters? That's already damn low as I see it, considering a living being's aura is already quite a bit of magic.

Anyway, I've decided to adapt the searchlight idea, though without requiring Sil to spend energy on it. Only when she concentrates on a direction/signature, she gets the really detailed information and can see farther, which can still be used to detect an ambush, but could also mean she's walking right into the next wall while doing so, because she simply didn't look out where she's going.

The only case where she spends energy to improve her sight, is when she's using her amulet. While powering it, the radius in which she sees without concentrating is significantly increased, then I will let her detect ambushes easily. The problem: 30 seconds, and she wouldn't be able to cast anything anymore.

2) When I wrote several hundret meters, I had really powerfull spells in mind. Over such large distancce Sil would never be able to analyse the spell, but she notices the power surge. It will be really rare that she notices something over more than 100 meters, normally it will be more around 25 to 50, such simple stuff like levitation is even below that. But active use of magic always is like a beacon to her.

3) Thanks! I'll promise, I'll take care not to let her go all crazy, I'm used to playing powerful chars^^


So, would these changes be alright?
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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Freyia on Sat Dec 22, 2012 1:26 pm

ALright sweet, I like your responses:

1) Alright lets do that, 3 meters is about 10 feet which is enough for a room and a little past the walls. This can be her normal range always. The searchlight can be like looking around: i.e. she has a 360 degree peripheral vision combined with the "looking around" searchlight, which can see farther. I think this can work, again my only concern is that when I read characters abilities I think about how these abilities not only affect the player using them, but also those that they are being used on. Please realize that many characters are stealth based hunters or assassins or thieves, so just keep that in mind when RPing. Try and accommodate them, otherwise they may not like RPing with you.

2) Alright, so you can't know the spell or analyze it, but you can tell when one is being used. I think your ranges should go like such: 25 meters normal spells, 50 meters unusual or battle spells, like if a magic fight is going on, and 100 meters really powerful magic. That should be good.

I also think that maybe pinpointing the exact location should be hard. When you sense magic, I feel it should be like hearing a loud cry. You can tell the direction, but not quite the distance or exact location. That is my idea on that.

3) Alright, I will trust you, but know that the other mods and admins are wary of you. Until we get to know you, realize you may be under a bit of scrutiny with any of your posts, so play it cool. Once we get comfortable with you, you will have much more freedom.

Try joining the Chat, there are usually at least a few players on, including myself and Steel Strike, another mod. We are an open community that is run like a group of friends or even family, and a lot of planning and thread making happens there.

I hope these ideas work for you, if they do just add them into your application, let me know and I will get you approved.

P.S. I really like your application format. I may try to get it adopted for all character sheets here. Very nice.
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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Silvern Gleam on Sat Dec 22, 2012 4:55 pm

Applied the requested changes! They're all in Special Talent, but I also added something new to Ability Examples and Uses, Spell canceling. It was mentioned before, but now it has more explanation and doesn't go under like that.

I understand perfectly well why I'll be under surveillance for some time, would have done exactly the same.

Freyia wrote:P.S. I really like your application format. I may try to get it adopted for all character sheets here. Very nice.

It would be an honor :-)
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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Steel Strike on Sat Dec 22, 2012 8:15 pm

My Little Pony, you have been accepted.
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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

Post by Silvern Gleam on Sun Dec 23, 2012 5:55 am

Yay!
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Age: 42

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Re: Silvern Gleam [Unicorn]

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