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How long has it been since she last got down to training? A while, that's for sure. It felt like it was just yesterday that she came back to Evermore, and she didn't even stay for long the first time. If she could recall clearly, when she came to Evermore 12 years ago, she only stayed for a week before hopping back to Oslo to continue her research and now, a dozen years later, here she is… in the eternal city once again. A place she was slowly starting to call home, though it definitely didn't come at a cheap price. When she came to Evermore, Sofi didn't think she would be greeted by hopeful faces in the tribe, especially the Grand Master himself. The other Masters had looked at her with looks that she still couldn't quite describe fully. And just like that, a few months after she returned, the Grand Master passed away and most of the Masters did too.
A part of her wondered if they were broken hearted or was equally linked to the Grand Master since there was one new perk that she received upon taking up the position. Spirit control, it enabled her to control and potentially strengthen people's bonds, especially her tribe members. But that was just a theory of her wild mind, she remembered she had to be the one that told Rowan, her long time friend, that the Electric Master, Samuel, had passed. She knew how fond he had been of him, that's a given since they've been through one part of their life together and she knew him, and even if she didn't know Rowan personally, she would still be able to read his feelings.
Rowan had been there when Sofi was at her worst, from consoling her every time she had an episode that stemmed from her uncontrollable mental breakdowns, or generally just depressed because she couldn't control her abilities every time she felt someone else's sad feelings, each and every one of them were a pain in the ass but he had been there for her. Now it's her time to pay it back. After convincing him that he was ready to take on the last step of his mastery evaluation, Rowan passed with flying colors, surprising every single one in the room, much to his surprise she had assumed from the reaction on his face that tells everything, but she knew he would succeed. Rowan was good at what he does, sometimes she didn't know why he always downplayed himself.
Sofi still hasn't gotten any permanent job as of yet since for the past few months, she had been busy with the tribe matters because in all honesty, she is new to this. She didn't know the others as well and she didn't know how they perceived her. Sighing to herself heavily, she stretched out her arms and twirled the twin blades on both her grip. The blonde had always preferred to train in the open, especially when it's windy, it always gives her a good space for her head to rest and physical training had been her way to meditate without staying still. While she was busy practicing her balance and stance, Sofi closed her eyes and allowed the metal in the blade guide her.
There was one reckless thing in her part, she had been so immersed in her training that she held one of the twin blades directly underneath someone's chin, close enough to almost graze the trachea and fluttered her eyes open to meet whoever it was that 'interrupted' her training.
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To say his life had completely turned upside down in the past few years was probably the biggest understatement of his entire life. Rowan had just about given up on the idea of finishing his studies, resigned himself to the fact that he would always be that idea of disappointment that his parents had pushed onto him from a young age. So when he finally found a master likeminded to him, one that wanted to teach him and believed in him, he swore that was a completely surreal place for him to be in. And he had enjoyed it again, learning again, becoming connected with his element in a way he had almost forgotten being able to, he felt like he knew himself again, like he was where he was supposed to be.
So losing Samuel, that had been one of the hardest things he had ever gone through, Rowan didn’t really let many people in, he didn’t have that many friends, all his relationships had been short-lived and never really flourished into anything. He’d been called non-committal more times than he could actually count. But his commitment to his master training, that hadn’t wavered even a little bit since he came to Evermore and began learning under Samuel. And now he missed him, he missed him more than he could probably describe to a person and that wasn’t a familiar feeling for him, nor one he particularly liked.
On top of that, he still struggled with the feeling that he wasn’t good enough for the role he had been asked to fill and while to his own shock, he had managed to pass his master trial and therefore was now officially the electric master of Evermore city. He had no idea how any of that equated to being the patient and wise teacher that Samuel had been. He was trying his best, because that was what Sam would have wanted him to do and the last thing he ever wanted to do was disrespect his memory but it definitely wasn’t easy for the Scot either. Thankfully, Sofi had been there every step of the way and gave him something to hold onto, someone who believed in him probably more than he did himself.
So that’s why he was wandering around the Initia territory trying to find her today, which seemed to be easier said than done when their grand master seemed to be quite the wanderer, he asked a few people where she was and none of them seemed to know but in the end he had managed to find her at the training area. As he came upon the open space he noticed the fact that Sofi seemed completely lost in thought as she moved with her weapons in a grace that could only be attributed to a metal master. He’d always known her as one of those, it was the psychic element that had completely shocked him at first but the longer he thought about it, the more it made sense to him.
He was perfectly aware it was dumb to approach her while she was wrapped up in her training like that but he also trusted his friend beyond what could probably be worded. So even as she pressed her blades up against his chin, he simply stayed there, calling her name as he looked her in the eye “Sofi” he rolled his eyes, damn this girl always losing her surroundings, sometimes he wondered how she passed a mastery exam “You are a damn menace to society, you know that” he teased as she finally registered what the hell she was doing and he stepped backward away from her blades.
Sofi always leaned more towards strengthening her physical stature rather than her mental, at least that's what most people saw to it. But that's not the actual case, there was no denying that the blonde loved getting down in action when it comes down to perfecting her movements and stance, but it didn't mean she neglected her main element. By training her body to be calm and relaxed, she also trained her mental by being level-headed. Her temper does not bode well with her element, both actually. Thankfully, she could always lean to something for further assistance. Or someone. During her session of inner peace with herself, Sofi often closed her entire surrounding. Nothing could disturb her when she closes her head, not even a cricket's sound. It gives her the time to think about a few things that needed her attention, such as the new Masters' election.
She could count down the days with ease, she remembered the day she was reunited with Rowan, back to talking with the Grand Master that surprisingly looked quite frail in a sense that Sofi could not decipher. But he looked so warm she couldn't find the heart to say no to his offer, not that he gave her much time to think about it. She knew Rowan, of course. She believes in him, she trusts him. The newly elected Master of the Electric element wasn't the problem, it's the others that she still had yet to meet much less get to know them. Speaking of the Electric Master, the moment she fluttered her eyes open, her bright cerulean hues met his, where a wry grin made its way up to her lips as she tried to refrain herself from laughing because his reaction was priceless.
One of her twin blades was still tipping his chin and she couldn't be bothered to remove them until he removed himself from it. "Rowan" she used the same tone he did, though it was clear that the Grand Master was stifling her laughter. "I'm not sure what to make of it, either way, you know I can hear you" she huffed and blew the stray strands of her blonde locks that were blocking her peripheral vision earlier. "I passed my mastery exam exceptionally fine okay, Kris said so…" Rolling her eyes at the Scot, she twirled the twin blade around her hand and tilted her head to the side, quirking her eyebrows in questioning manner, wondering why he's here.
"Besides, let's be real, you know I knew you were there. You have to up your game, Rowan… " she retorted playfully and beckoned to come and join her as she took a seat on the ground, leaning against the big tree in the clearing. "How are you holding up? I heard plenty were opting for Electric as one of their elements, you're a busy guy, Row." Despite the teasing tone accentuating her words, the look in her said that she was proud. "Shoot" she quipped, her right hand playing with the tip of the blades absentmindedly while staring at the male, "I know you're not here just to pay daily tribute to annoy me, come on speak up, we both know I don't bite." Sofi's a bit concerned when it comes down to her friends, especially the Master before her right now, she left for quite some time and she had no idea what happened other than Rowan developed a soft spot for his previous predecessor.
If there was one thing that Rowan had learned resoundingly since coming back into an Initia community and being an active member of it, it was that everyone had their own ways of doing things, every master was different, every member of the tribe learned differently, everyone made different decisions based on what they thought was best for them. He liked that, he liked that their species and especially the tribe in Evermore, were very fluid about expectations and let people be what they wanted to be. There was no bias here about what elements you did and didn’t learn, no one was forced to go down the path to mastery if they didn’t want to and most importantly, they upheld a master of every element which ensured no one was treated any differently based on what element they had been born to know.
A lot of that was thanks to Sofi, she had brought the psychic element back from the dead almost, something completely unheard of and that had him a little in awe of her, which is why he never wanted to let her down. She believed in him in this post as electric master and he constantly found himself wanting to prove to her he was worthy of the trust she put in him. Admittedly, it was easier said than done, he wasn’t exactly a model citizen after all and turning his life around was certainly going to be an uphill battle but he was now in a place where he wanted to. For himself, he wanted to be a better person and one all those people could look up to the way he had always looked up to Samuel.
Maybe he was a little bold to be putting himself into the training space of the metal master but Rowan knew he well enough to know she was much more in control of herself than she might actually appear, even when completely lose in her element. “I’m not sure how exactly you passed when your head’s always somewhere else” he commented with an amused shake of his head as he stepped back to distance himself a little “Then again, who could blame you when you get everyone’s two cents on everything huh” he shrugged, she didn’t need to read his mind to get the truth from him, he always said it how it was anyway, though she had definitely called him up on a few choice thoughts he’d let slip in the past.
“I wasn’t trying to sneak up on you Sof, don’t think anyone is stupid enough to do that” he laughed as he dropped down to sit beside her under the tree, glancing up at it for a moment and smiling, he wasn’t an earth Initia but he felt like if he diversified he would have chosen earth as his second element “Not anyone who knows you anyway” he teased as he leaned his head against the trunk and stared out over the training area “It’s….a lot” he admitted with a half sigh, he was doing his best not to complain because there had been a time when this was all he wanted “I guess I just always worry about screwing up, they’re relying on me now” he’d never really had anyone rely on him before and so he was putting a lot of pressure on his own shoulders.
He rolled his eyes at her when she told him to come out with his point “Can’t a guy just want to see his friend?” he asked with raised brows, really that was his only motivation for being here, he supposed he was hoping he could make her feel better about this whole situation because she always seemed to be a massive source of confidence for him.
Evermore was Evermore, when she first came here, she knew the previous Grand Master since she approached him first, a humble Grand Master who is also a Water Master. He was kind and very altruistic from the way she sees him carry himself. It fascinated her a bit to know that such a city existed in the first place, though she wouldn’t go as far as to say she never believed a place that can exist, not when her affinity element is Psychic. Till this day, she never did quite get her grasp around it, she can control it and expand the element in its own position, yes, but understanding the entire concept of how it was made and molded, now that is entirely another thing. It wasn’t rare for Initia tribes to have more than 4 Masters, especially outside the element of Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. However, it also didn’t mean it’s a norm to have Initia who have an affinity to the elements such as Electric and Gravity.
They are those people they call one in every thousand or a few thousand. When she came back to Evermore, she didn’t expect to be given such a big responsibility, she came back to settle in after spending years abroad learning and perfecting her elements. Perhaps, become the Psychic Master there too, therefore completing the inner circle; placing her a seat at the council too. Becoming the Grand Master? It never crossed her mind, especially when she thought there were others who were more qualified than her, a new girl returning after a few years. But Sofi wasn’t about to just pack up and leave neither could she just push the title aside and act like it was never given to her, not when the entire tribe knew of it. They did have a few witnesses too. So she did what she could, which was convince and motivate the other newly elected Masters for the Evermore tribe, starting with Rowan.
Of course, she would start with the Scottish male, he was the easiest for her to access since they’re friends and knew one another. Sofi knew Rowan wouldn’t take the news of being the Electric Master well, her years of friendship with him enabled her to read him like an open book, literally. The blonde made sure not to pressure any of the Masters, she sent her words for recruitment, some of who just came to Evermore and some of who she invited after encountering them on her travels. She wishes to create a welcoming community where no one will be counted as an outcast, every element would be here for their convenience and Evermore would be their idea of a humble abode. The Psychic Master didn’t want anyone to feel like how she may have felt. It wasn’t a pleasant feeling.
“My head may be somewhere else but I’m not stupid enough to allow my entire defense system to go down without a backup” she rolled her eyes dramatically at the male, sometimes they can act like a bunch of high school seniors, “Besides, I’m awesome like that.” Rowan wasn’t wrong, it sucks to honestly get everybody’s two cents on everything, most of the time it overwhelms her and thankfully before going through this element, she was already studying psychology in a deeper depth, a wry grin formed on the corner of her lips as he said that no one else would be sane or stupid enough to sneak up from behind, “No, they wouldn’t.” There was a reason why Sofi always found solace in training outside, she wasn’t an Earth Initia, but before she was a Psychic Initia, she was a Metal one, metal and earth are slightly connected, distant relatives perhaps.
She placed a reassuring hold on his shoulder, shaking her head softly, “I swear you always think the lowest of yourself, Rowan… Insecurity is a thing and so is anxiety, I know that. Believe me, I do. But you don’t need someone to elevate you up, you already have it, you just haven’t embraced it. It’ll take time so don’t fret yourself over it, we’re all learning” Truthfully, there was a lot of potential in the Electric Master that she saw from a distance and didn’t even need to tap in his head to know about it. “Don’t pressure yourself too much, you’re gonna pop a vein one day and even I can’t help a brain dead someone” Of course, she’d say that. “No offense, but you’re a bit busy and occupied now, you are in demand, dude. I didn’t think you’d have the time to just pop up and say hi to a friend. Seems a bit unlikely, but now that you are here, hi. But seriously you couldn't call like an actual 21st centurian and go grab some lunch or something?”
Rowan never really thought that his life would turn out the way it had and yet he wasn’t complaining either, from a young age he wanted to make something of himself and while he always excelled better outside of the Initia world, that was simply because his tribe didn’t have the means to teach him. Once he got out in the world and figured out there was more than just a few people who got to boss him around all his life, he had branched. Made lifelong friends, much like Sofi and Wes. He got to pick his element back up and relearn it in a way that made sense to him and while he doubted his readiness to teach others how to control it, being a master had always been one of those dreams he had in the back of his head, one he wasn’t sure would ever come true but there was always hoping.
“Your head is always somewhere else, feel like I need to tie you to the damn earth just to keep you here sometimes” he teased her with a chuckle, Sofi was definitely the type to get lost in thought easily when there was a lot on her mind and he imagined being the grand master came with a lot to think about constantly. There was the threat of phoenixes which while it shouldn’t be an issue, never seemed to actually go away and then there was the Niveis, who were a sister species to the phoenixes which he was sure set everyone on edge too. He raised his brows when she agreed with him and he rolled his shoulders back with a coy grin “Metal master is pretty much a massive sign on your forehead saying walking weapon after all” he chuckled softly “What made you choose metal anyway?” it wasn’t her affinity obviously though she never really knew her affinity to begin with.
He turned his gaze over to her when she touched his shoulder and he let out a long breath “Yeah well I didn’t always make the best decisions and it feels like I’m constantly trying to make up for em” not that he could complain about that because he royally fucked up sometimes but sometimes he wished the world might give him a breather so he could get on with his life and whatever it was he was supposed to be doing it rather than constantly dwelling on the road that got him here. She was right though, they were all learning and growing and figuring out who they were, he was young for a master, he had years to learn and perfect his craft and loads of students he would see come and go. “Stressing is basically one of my personality traits Sof, you know that” he chuckled a little, he wasn’t the type of person who could just let things go, he was an overthinker for sure.
“In-demand is one word for it, damn I didn’t know my element was so popular” he laughed softly “But today is actually one of those rare things they call a day off?” he spoke it like he was dubious that it actually existed and laughed “Who knew they were a thing” he spoke as he nudged against her shoulder. “And I’m here to demand you take one too, we haven’t had a proper chance to catch up since you came to Evermore and I know you’ve been itching to kick my ass in the training arena” he laughed “So how bout a couple of rounds and then we shall grab lunch, like actual 21 centurians” he winked and stepped back to study her reaction to his suggestion.
It wasn't a surprise to see the Ukrainian born female feeling the comfort and friendliness he exuded, admittedly they debated against one another a lot more than they actually sit down and talk like any casual friends would do but that's the beauty of their friendship; it's complex. As soon as she returned back to Evermore, the first person she sought out was him, all the information she received from the previous Grand Master of Evermore tribe were too much for the lady to comprehend and calculate. Her brain was fried for a few minutes of that day. Before she could even say a word regarding the agreement, however, he had passed away. Sofi always keeps her eye out in the alert, which she was immensely grateful for her ability in the Psychic element that allows her to be sure who she should trust and who she should not. Most of everyone here are new, the Masters especially.
From what she knew, they love their element and are in complete control over it after decades of training and disciplining oneself but they have yet to put it into the spur of training others which she can understand it to be quite… intimidating. The reaction from Rowan was completely understandable. "Rude" she scowled playfully, shaking her head at the Electric Master in feigned dismay, at least some things haven't changed even when most are. At least she still had him by her side, to aid her into this journey the same way she would come to his. It brings her reassurance to know Rowan wasn't going to ditch her. "You realize you're talking to a freaking Psychic right? A Psychic Master at that. My head is supposed to be around all the time. It's how I get myself away from all those messy thoughts of you people. I don't need to know what people think about the latest bacon and egg sandwich they ate yesterday morning, excuse you" she rolled her eyes in annoyance, those things actually happen and when she wasn't focused, it gets to her, especially when the grumpy Initia haven't had her morning coffee fix yet.
"Or if they think the clothes they wore made them look baggy." She had plenty of things to cast her worry on, for sure, which is why it's imperative for Sofi to keep herself level-headed seeing as her head is gonna be her best asset ever. There's the issue with the Phoenixes… and of course, the latest species that came to build their new home in the same eternal city; Niveis. Sofi had no problem with that neither does she have anything against them as a whole but naturally, with their history with the Phoenixes, the probability of their history with Niveis were going to be quite similar. "Have you heard about the Niveis settling in Evermore?" Returning back to his question, she shrugged absentmindedly, it wasn't hard for her to answer that question really, "I didn't know I was an Initia until a Metal Master told me I inherited it and I was like 9 at that time. My adopted father… who took me out of the orphanage, he's a Metal Master of the local tribe in Kiev. He believed in me when nobody else did, I didn't fit in since I didn't have an element, of course I didn't know there's a thing called psychic element nor did anybody else really…" Aka the man she admired.
"He offered to teach me that element. In a way, he gifted me it, and voila, hard work and diligence paid its due when I reach 18." It was a blessing to Sofi, she always reminded herself of that. Had it not been because of Kris, she may have not had the motivation to even scour the world to learn more about her affinity element. It was one of the biggest reasons that drove her to keep encouraging Rowan because she had been in that spot once. "Well we're not immortals so I can't say we have forever to make up to ourselves but… we can try to live our life peacefully while we can. Our species aren't exactly holding up to a good example due to our ancestors' bloody history with the Phoenixes. The least we can do is show a better version of ourselves. We owe it to them and to ourselves" Nudging the male by pushing his shoulder slightly, she chuckled, "Character development is a thing, you know." Rowan was comparably younger than most Masters, and it didn't help that plenty wanted to learn the Electric element, all the blonde could do is encourage him to do his best and cheer for him.
It wasn't as if she could restrict a number on anyone. They were free to choose, after all. "You have a lot building on your personality traits and unfortunately, paranoia and stressing yourself out seemed to make the cut perfectly fine much to annoyance because I know I can't promote the 'carpe diem, carpe noctem, carpe omnia' shit if I'm not practicing it either." Electric never used to be this popular due to the lack of Masters to teach, it was quite possibly the most rarest element after Psychic and tied up with Gravity. "Day off is actually a thing, and thank god it is. I don't exactly have a student in the tribe to teach, at the moment… but, I do have to teach two 1000 year old something, dude. Talk about not pressuring at all…" she grumbled under her breath, Sofi was just 78 compared to them and it scared her that her abilities weren't up to par. As usual, Rowan knew exactly how to calm her down and she couldn't do it herself, her cerulean hues lit up in excitement when the idea was tossed, "Now we're talking, come on, up you go mister"
He gave a mock roll of his eyes when she called him rude and shrugged his shoulders slightly at the excuses she gave for never being quite there, he knew she had always had strange stuff happening even back when they were in college but he imagined it couldn’t be easy to see into other people’s thoughts, half the time they probably weren’t interesting or relevant at all “Maybe we need to get you some eyepatches” he teased, knowing it was connected to eyesight at least there was some level of control about what she heard and saw which would make things slightly easier. He did sometimes wonder what it would have been like to learn other elements and be connected with many different ones but at the end of the day, his alliance always came back to electricity, it was special to him and he wouldn’t ever want to give it up.
“Alright alright, I get it, being able to read people’s mind sucks” he purposely looked her in the eye at that moment so he could add to the end of it ‘Not like it’s one of the most desired superpowers or anything’ he chuckled softly shaking his head slightly in amusement. Rowan was pretty good at keeping his thoughts to himself when it came to her, he certainly knew he couldn’t look her in the eye while they sparred or she’d know his next move before he made it, total unfair advantage if you asked him. When she mentioned the Niveis he nodded his head “Never actually knew the Phoenixes had cold cousins” he commented and shrugged his shoulders “You and me aren’t your traditional masters, I’m sure we can find a way to co-exist with our new neighbors” he certainly didn’t have any intention of resparking any wars, they had enough going on in the city without adding inner conflicts to it.
He knew a little of her story and how she became a metal master but he hadn’t really talked to her properly since she found out her second element, or he supposed it actually her first element all things considered “I’ve never actually heard of a diversified Initia being able to master an element” he commented with a thoughtful look “But then I guess you didn’t technically choose to give up your affinity element did you? You just….didn’t seem to have one” so maybe that was why. He wasn’t going to try and understand the way initiation ceremonies worked, they just kinda did. He had chosen to keep his affinity element and learn it all the way through. He was glad she agreed about keeping the peace between them and the other factions “I think we can definitely do better than those before us” he admitted as he nudged her back “Though convincing everyone to see it the same way might be difficult” he commented knowing some Initia in this city had been heavily involved in the way with the phoenixes.
“Yeah I know” he commented with a laugh “But mistakes still seem to follow you” he added with a heavy sigh and rolled his shoulders back, he was doing his best to put his past in the past and move on with the present but it never seemed to be quite that easy and someone was always there to remind him that he would never truly be free of it. “I’m not sure I know who I am without the stress and paranoia” he commented with an amused shake of his head “Just gotta leave to put it aside” he swallowed and smiled “The good news is that my students seem pretty interested in the way I teach” and he enjoyed the freedom to show them the element the way he saw it best. Which was with as much practical experience as possible. “1000 odd? Yikes” he spoke and pulled a face “How’s it feel teaching people older than you?” he asked with a curious raise of his brow, all of his students were younger or of similar age to him so far but it had to be intimidating to teach immortals.
Seeing the way her face lit up at the idea of training he chuckled and shrugged off his jacket to the side before hopping up into the training ring and rolling up his sleeves, he wasn’t cocky because he knew how powerful Sofi was when she was the metal master, let alone now that she was the psychic master too but he was always up for a challenge and he was a master now too “Just don’t forget metal conducts electricity” he teased with a chuckle as he prepared himself for the match.
Teasing Rowan was Sofi's favorite pastime thing to do. Honestly if anyone asked her that, she would actually answer it with that. To be fair, Rowan had been by her side for a while, he's a very good friend, not that she would really remind him that every day directly. Though, it didn't mean the blonde couldn't find any other alternatives to make sure her message is being sent through. She had plenty of ways to use, after all. She could remember how he continued to stay with her and supported her when she was going through a hard time trying to control the psychic element that just came out of nowhere like wild mushrooms. First, she could levitate things. The next? She could read their next door neighbour's emotions when she was busy PMSing which was just pure torture for Sofi to be a sad and gloomy gal for the entire day. That was when she couldn't get a grip on it and till this day, she was eternally grateful to have his company.
The suggestion of getting eye patches caused her to scrunch her nose up in distaste, "Hell no. You want this face to go from being pretty to being a dysfunctional looking pirate? I'm not even having any eye infection or partially blind…" she grumbled, of course Rowan would suggest that. "But you're not wrong in that department though… eyesight proves to be a problem sometimes I wish I can make myself feel blind… unfortunately it's nearly impossible to penetrate my own mind to make me visualize things like that" So robbing her own senses by putting them under an illusion to her own sight wasn't possible. She could only do that to others but never herself. Maybe not yet. It wasn't as if she wanted her mind to be that vulnerable for people to crack open anyway. Sofi knew she could choose to shut her whole mind down to prevent that but it has been a part of her for so long that the thought of doing that feels like she was trying to shut her own self down and that didn't sit well with the blonde.
When he stared right back at her, Sofi narrowed her bright cerulean hues at him, "You're trying to make a point there, aren't you. Teasing me would not make you cooler, Rowan Mckenzie. It's factually impossible in this universe" she retorted, shaking her head teasingly at him. Sometimes it's a wonder how childish they could be with one another. "And no, telepathy may be the shit in superhero movies but those are exaggeration… biased opinions of people who are not even psychic…" Admittedly it is a cool ability to have, it gives you leverage over people and your opponent especially, but the constant need to keep it controlled and levelled takes a lot of mind power and will. Very tiring. The topic about the Niveis was something she knew she needed to talk about one way or another, she heard rumors about the chief signing the peace treaty, and hopefully wished they would not pose them a threat the same way their hot counterparts did. "I know right… surprising but not really shocking. We have deviant species called phoenixes and they have their own mutated ones, Niveis. Cooler name that's for sure. Pun intended" she grinned sheepishly, she sincerely hoped that they can strike a mutual understanding, perhaps even a friendship.
"I hope for that too, let's hope for the best. With our sensible skills, they should fall for our charms right?" she purposely wiggled her eyebrows playfully and giggled. Sofi knew her story sounded very intriguing to other Initia, a master couldn't be a diversified and vice versa. But here she is, standing in the history as quite possibly the first in history to master two elements. "Me neither. I won't lie I felt like a freak when I was a kid. I was just grateful I was gifted the element of metal to learn… who knows when I'd find a connection with my psychic element then" Her journey to being a Metal Master was a delightful one. "I stopped trying to understand it a long time ago, dude, it breaks your head." The blonde was glad that he was on the same boat she was in, but then again Rowan had always been a rather sensible out of the two of them. Definitely the most sensible one. "It's not gonna be a straight journey… the boat will wobble and we'll find it to be unstable most of the time but we can work to fix it." It was a strange way of phrasing it, but it works.
"It's only natural for mistakes to follow us. I mean, look at us. Who wouldn't follow us?" she decided to turn this into a much happier setting by turning it into a joke instead, it's the least she could do. "Without stress and paranoia, you're still Rowan Mckenzie. I don't know about you but I heard he's quite the lad." Naturally as a psychologist, her occupation was literally to uplift people and help them, but this is genuinely coming from the bottom of her heart, she didn't like seeing him sad. If she could help with it, she would. He's the only person she has left in this world other than Kris. A proud smile graced her lips upon hearing that others liked the way he taught, "I should stop by soon, and evaluate you know.. For fun." It's more likely for her to munch on chips and make fun of him, but that's just the usual stuff. "Intimidating. That's one word to say it. I had to wonder if there were any other Psychics but no… only me. What if I mess up… embarrassment of the year… hello" she shuddered and shook her head trying to get rid of the thought, "And just when I thought 100 is old…"
Rowan knew exactly how to lift her mood up, training is always her favorite thing to do and suffice to say, the Electric Master can be quite competent which keeps her adrenaline going on honestly. A challenge is what she always needed. She unzipped her jacket and tossed it aside the ring, leaving her in her tank top as she walked around with a grin, "That has to be like the 100th time you remind me of that every time we spar. Just say you're afraid of me bending you like an actual malleable metal" she mocked and stretched out her limbs, cornering him casually without having any predator pretense before she tossed her jacket at him to distract him playfully. "Oops"
He laughed because she reacted the exact what he expected to when he teased her about the idea of an eye patch “You make yourself way too easy to wind up Sof” he spoke with a laugh, one slightly crazy suggestion and she was already off on the grumpy train, it really was quite endearing. “Feel blind as in being able to unfocus your mind enough that it doesn’t matter what you see” he whistled slightly, that would not be an easy feat given how reliant on sight the human body was, it was their most powerful sense for a reason after all. “Then again, if anyone knows anything about that kind of focus in the brain it’d be you, miss psychology degree” he didn’t forget what she went to college for, back when they were at university together, they seemed like so long ago now but he wasn’t exaggerating when he said those were probably the best years of his life.
“Teasing you is the only way I get through these mindless formalities we’re supposed to have as masters” he commented with a chuckle and raised his brows, both of them had been raised in tribes that let them down and gave them very little support when it came to their affinity element so he was sure she could understand his own reservations of being any kind of traditional Initia tribe. He actually enjoyed the fact that Evermore was so different and there was flexibility to move into a new era of what a real Initia tribe should look like. Starting with not causing pointless wars with species who couldn’t help what they were, as frustrating as their lack of training might be. “Yeah well you’re the only one who really knows what it’s like but I think we all complain about the limitations of our abilities too much” he blinked a few times as he looked back at her “You have superhero powers dude, stop whining” she’d definitely told him something similar before when he complained about his master training so it only seemed fair he returned the sentiment. When she joked about the Niveis being cooler than the Phoenixes he snorted in an amused manner “As long as they don’t have the same god complex as the d’Fierro clan did, we should be okay” he affirmed with a nod of his head.
“I think we do things differently” he answered bluntly with a shrug of his shoulders, he saw the differences even between Sofi being the grand master and the previous one but even then, the tribe in Evermore had always seemed more adaptive and willing to move with the times, which was good for him, as someone who saw electricity as an element becoming more and more connected to tech, he believed in rapid mindset changes and the same could be applied to politics too. “We both know what it’s like to feel like you don’t belong” he spoke softly and nodded “Now it’s our job to prevent the same mistakes being made in our tribe” as someone who was hesitant to be a master, he still felt part of the collective and while Sofi was the leader, he saw it as his duty to keep her on the right path. “Quite literally it seems” he joked when she spoke about it breaking her head “Don’t go too loopy on me, I still need you” he chuckled softly, she was stronger than most people gave her credit for actually.
He laughed softly at the joke she made and then from the half-compliment she gave him “Yeah, well when I manage to shake them forever, I’ll let you know, till then” he smirked slightly, his voice was dripping with sarcasm because it was pretty much impossible to ever completely rid yourself of those kinds of thoughts and feelings, though he supposed it didn’t hurt to try and think more positively. “And by evaluate you mean completely rip my technique to shreds and heckle me” he commented with a scrutinizing gaze in her direction and grumbled, he still had no idea what he was doing but his students didn’t complain about him and that had to count for something he supposed. “You’ll figure it out, you always do” he commented with an arch of his brow “I mean who goes away and learns a completely extinct element by themselves to the point they master it, who does that?” his tone was teasing but he meant it, he was seriously in awe of what she managed to do.
The two of them always knew how to bring out the best in one another and when to change the topic, that’s what made them such good friends, they were respectful but honest and always kept one another’s best interests in mind. He laughed and shook his head at her taunting “Yeah well every time you get zapped one way or another” he added with a laugh, it was hard to avoid doing so when she always used metal and his attacks used electricity always. He kept his gaze slightly off her, never quite meeting her gaze as he drew his element to him, seeing a couple of sparks fly in the corner of his eye as the power started to form. He hadn’t realized she had come in quite so close so he quickly dropped the power from his hands to his feet and raised a warning foot towards her. He was confused by the jacket throw when it came out of nowhere, he quickly lifted a hand to pull it off and ducked low to the ground knowing that was definitely a distraction ploy, annoyingly, he didn’t know this area as well as she did, he turned into a kick and sent a bolt of electricity in her general direction just to get her to back off.
She once again scrunched up her nose and narrowed her cerulean optics at him with her finger wagging dismissively in front of him as if he was threatening him mentally but it remains just a gesture, "I'm not easy to wind up… no matter how much mental I am, you just know how to push my buttons when I least expect it," she pointed out, truthfully Rowan does have a way to tick her off but also knew how to make her smile, with ease. It was no wonder she felt so comfortable around the Electric Master when he didn't even have to do a single thing but to be himself because that's what Sofi likes the most; real people. She had to admit though, Rowan's suggestion on being blind for a while is almost tempting if she didn't cherish her sight. "Wish it was that simple but I don't think I can survive an hour closing everything out without feeling like I'm incomplete, much less a day without it." Sofi learned that she had the ability to shut down her mind at will; an ability a Psychic Master was granted. It was savvy and helpful but it wasn't something she preferred to use considering she relies heavily on her senses as a whole.
"You know… I actually like those years back in the university, I don't like the noise those frat parties make and annoying people being annoying but… we did have some pretty good memories hovering there" As far as she was concerned, the Scot is quite the valedictorian, he was good at what he does and often impressed many with his talent and knowledge regarding technology. "You know those formalities aren't really needed, I say… new grand master, new rules" she shrugged casually, perhaps she was being a bit too liberal about it but the whole idea of her taking up the mantle of her predecessor here was to ensure their legacy stays strong and well-preserved, and that is exactly what she will be doing. Starting with exercising leniency among the Masters first. "Most of us here are nowhere near 100 anyway, we're like 80 something at most? I don't know, anyway point still stands that we're still young anyway."
A scowl marred her face when he used the same words she used to use on him whenever she witnessed him displaying his ability, "God, I wish I can manipulate people into doing my bidding then. That'll be helpful… and extremely inhuman but" she pulled up her arms as to make a gesture that life is life, admittedly the blonde could not manipulate them without their consent. However, she could plant some suggestive ideas that will eventually prompt them into working their way in that. "I don't think they're that ignorant" she mused, so far what she's gotten word around on the Niveis is that they're here to find a permanent settlement in hopes to find a home that will accept them, which Evermore would not reject and turn them away. All she had to make sure that they are also tolerant to their rules here, make no mistake, she may not show it much but the Initia tribe here is her main priority and if anyone, anyone, threatens their peace and arrangements, she would not tolerate that and it takes a handful amount to make her pissed off. Annoyed, quite easily. Pissed? Not quite.
"I agree, we're more… I don't mean to say lenient and carefree seeing as we still instill those disciplines and loyalty inside every person especially while training but I am confident that we're more accepting and more… open-minded to new things. Hence why I'll be working on scheduling a meeting with the Niveis tribe chief, I think her name is Anivia. There are rumors that they are signing the peace treaty too, so things should be easier to comprehend" They used to go by 'you stay in your lane and we'll stay in ours' idealistic but Sofi is adamant to change it into a more 'we forget about the past and work together to create a better future for future generations'. She was ambitious, she'd give herself that. "I know the feeling all too well" she smiled softly, it was a sentiment she shared with plenty of the Masters here in Evermore too, some, if not most, originated outside of Evermore and band together here because people needed them and would accept them despite their differences and flaws, "I guess that's why we bond better. Because we know what it feels like to search for a place to belong… it's not as easy as buying a house, isn't it?"
Sofi saw a great vision for their future and hoped that they'll be able to fulfill that. "We will never turn anyone away. I feel like it's almost impossible for us to do that anyway considering we have all the element Masters here to teach others. There's no reason why we couldn't accept and nurture a lone Initia who needed a tribe" She knew Initia had a pull for tribes, it strengthens their bond together and sometimes it was enhanced by the spirit manipulation their grand master does but most of the time, it was purely genuine. Pushing the male playfully by the shoulders, she shook her head and laughed, "Oh you're gonna need a little more effort than that if you want to get rid of me, dude, believe me." Sometimes she wished Rowan would see the talent people saw in him but nevertheless, she didn't mind being his kicker and cheerleader, humility is a beautiful trait. "To be fair, I wouldn't rip you to shreds, I'll just be by the sidelines… cheering for you." That was one way to say it. Sofi pressed her hands to her cheeks as to close up any chances of him seeing her blush because she could be weak around certain compliments, "Wasn't an easy journey, that much I could say."
Learning an element to master it is one thing to do, after all, much less to grapple on your own because no one is there to teach you. "I always get zapped because I only use metal around you" she rolled her eyes, "Just wait till I go mental on you, literally, we'll see who's laughing then" she even stuck out her tongue childishly at him, which says a lot. The distraction ploy wasn't new to the both of them, Rowan knew Sofi always liked to play sneaky instead of going full offense attack, but there were other times when she completely loses the head and attacks straight on; it was the difference between being a metal master and a psychic master, it makes her unpredictable. When he sent a bolt to her direction, she evaded just in time and narrowed her hues at him scrutinizingly, "Careful" she hissed, "A little too much electric and you just might get a taste of your own medicine." With that, she played with her bracelet, clearly thinking on what to turn it into for her weapon of the day, but while doing so, she decided to play around with him for a bit, causing Sofi to laugh in his head just for the fun of it but it was brief because he knew well to avoid eye contact.
“I feel like everything felt simpler back then” he spoke in reference to their time in university, sharing a flat meant they saw each other often, he remembered making fun of drunk people who were stumbling across campus from the bedroom window and card games, which he usually lost because he had a terrible poker face and sometimes they talked about the Initia tribe system and how messed up they thought it was, other times they’d argue about what would be the best superpower to have “We did” he agreed with her “Except that one time someone let a stink bomb off in the building, that was not a good memory” he looked back at Sofi as she talked about the tribe and how she wanted to run it, he could respect her for wanting to try something different and to be better. God knows they needed that. “I guess we can say we’re in a state of figuring it out” he teased and smiled gently.
He laughed when she mused about wanting to control people’s minds “I am pretty sure from the news reports that being able to control minds is probably something you absolutely do not want to be able to do right now” he spoke it firmly, after all, all the things he’d read about the strange happenings had mention of people not acting like themselves and doing things out of character. Hearing her talk about the Niveis was interesting, he found her to be a very open-minded person when compared with most masters he’d met but then she had surrounded herself with other like-minded people. Lydia was an advocate for peace between Initia and Phoenixes, Enzo was a dramatic guy but very tolerant nonetheless. She was smart, he’d give her that one.
“Well I think it helps that you’ve chosen people who think like you to run the tribe with you” he supposed he fell in that category too, after all the misery his search for a master had caused him, he definitely stood for a tribe that welcomed everyone, it didn’t matter what element someone wielded, there was no lesser or greater element, it was about giving people a safe space to learn and grow. “Once they sign the peace treaty that puts everyone on level ground, no one is worming themselves out of any harm they caused” and he had heard rumors there would be more weight behind crimes sooner or later with a supernatural justice system too. Which admittedly had him a little nervous given his colorful past. He chuckled at the way she talked about their search for where they belonged “I mean I suppose it could be as easy as that but I’m not sure it would feel complete” he admitted with a shrug, after all, there were many Initia who chose to drop their elemental routes and just become human.
“Bold statements and you said you weren’t ready to be a leader” he chuckled softly, she had a naturally charismatic vibe and he was sure everyone around her and within the tribe could see that, even when she was still new to the tribe, quite literally no one had opposed her stepping up into the grand master position. He had been one of the first to support it. He smiled because he enjoyed the way the two of them were together, it wasn’t awkward or difficult with Sofi, they just were and that’s what worked so well. They could say anything, be in whatever mood they wanted to, it wasn’t fake or difficult, it was just real. “Oh come on, you would totally take the chance to heckle, you know I would to you” he laughed softly, admittedly it would all be playful and lighthearted and probably just him making jokes to distract her honestly. “The worthwhile journeys never are” he responded factually and shrugged as he chuckled because he thought he saw a hint of a blush on her face.
“That’s a good question though, why is metal always your first choice?” he asked with raised brows, he was gonna assume it was because it was the one which came first and the one she had relied on solely for so long “Psychic is your affinity right? Doesn’t that make it the one that comes first?” frankly he had no idea how that all worked because she was the only master he’d ever heard of that managed to master an element that wasn’t their affinity. He watched the way she very narrowly avoided the bolt and chuckled softly “Electric is all I have to remember and we’re in an outside arena so I’m hardly in my element” though technically neither was she as metal would be easier taken from an indoor arena. When she laughed inside his head he shuddered slightly “That is mildly creepy” he spoke and sent punch in her direction while electrically charging his fist, he wasn’t a hands-off fighter and he didn’t particularly like being toyed with.
Things were simpler back then, those words kept echoing in her ears to the point where Sofi pressed her lips together and smiled sadly, "They were, weren't they? I feel like so many things happened and it felt so fast. You know I never expected this" she said and made a gesture, "All of this." She didn't expect to be an Initia who had an affinity for an element most thought to be extinct, and she certainly didn't expect to assume a leadership role somewhere so far away from her own tribe in Kiev. "I only thought I knew what was in store for my future but even now, I think I still get surprised by the turn of events." She chuckled at the mention of the stink bomb, admittedly those pranks back then did not amuse any of them because it often leads back to immaturity. The kind which she doesn't like to tolerate. Sofi is generally a disciplined person, Kris taught her that discipline is the key to achieve greatness and 9-year-old Sofi believed that will every fiber of her being.
"I hope we'll find an answer to that soon though… I don't wish to leave the tribe at a vulnerable state for long and you know it's easy to do all that chaotic mess when their leader is…" she sighed and tried to find the proper word to phrase it, "Displaced?" Oh, she's heard about the recent reports regarding the mind controlled victims who ended up not remembering any single fragment from the event, which did pique her interest because of how complex the case seemed to be, for a Psychic Initia like her? Of course, it would come up to her. "Yeah, probably not. I heard about what happened. How serious is it?" She hasn't done proper digging as of yet but it didn't take long for news to spread around in the wind, especially when they have newspapers to cover it for supernatural majority that covers the eternal city predominantly. A smile came across her lips when he praised the idea of bringing people together to bring this vision to life, "I need people who can think like I do. People who are open to accept changes for the better future they would lead others to. People like you too" she grinned wryly, Rowan had been her first pick for Electric Master, for sure.
Was she being biased? Perhaps but she needed to have people she can learn to trust and respect in the inner council. A dream a few decades ago seemed so impossible because people find it hard to tolerate one another, now she wants to make it come to life. She has the platform now. What's the harm in trying? "Good. We should try everyone equally." The city held some much potentials in hand that Sofi was very enthusiastic to look forward to. "Maybe to others it would not feel as complete, but you know me… I've been searching for a place where I feel like I belonged to, all this while. I didn't feel any of that even when I trained to be a Metal Master back in my tribe. Here I feel more… acceptable. I don't know, somewhere along the lines of it, I guess." There was really nothing that could be said about that, really. Not for Sofi. "You know how ambitious I can be sometimes, Rowan" she rolled her eyes at the male, if anyone knew her like the back of their hand, it would be him, others may not be able to read her because she puts quite a shield that shrouds her facade and exterior but Rowan, that guy she's let in more than a few times, he was there to see her at her best and her worst.
"I don't think I'm qualified to lead an entire tribe. Lead my own element students? Maybe. But the whole tribe? A tribe that has completed the circle of elemental controls? That's a lot of pressure right there." It doesn't mean she didn't want to, if she didn't, she would have rejected the placement but here she was, standing before him. "I want this. But I'm not sure if I'm the right fit to be doing this." Insecurity doesn't come easy to her, what kind of a psychologist would she be if she couldn't even control her own emotions? She knew if anyone would understand her dilemma, it was him. Pursing her lips lightly as she shrugged casually, the present grin on her lips stated that she would live up to Rowan's expectations, "Okay fine maybe I would slip in a few here and there. But shouldn't you be focused too? Too much seriousness can ruin the mood, no?" she teased, "I promise not to embarrass you too much." Keyword being too much.
The question regarding her choice of element used in combat did come in mind a few times more than usual, "I never knew. I knew Psychic is my affinity element yeah… but I didn't know about this until I was like what- 48? That was after I was already a Metal Master. When Kris brought me to the tribe, I was this kid who was dormant. Imagine having seeing your adopted father practice and element in front of you all this while, you would be fascinated and you would want to follow in his footsteps. He gave me that element. He gifted me that element so I can learn it. So I wouldn't be… isolated, anymore." It was generous of him, it was something she will never forget. "Metal meant so much to me. I think Psychic is just that part of me that was locked inside, something that makes me feel complete but Metal is what I began my journey with."
It also helps that Metal aids her more in direct on-hand battle better than Psychic. "Why did you think I did that? Because you'd be freaked out obviously, nothing better than to see that look on your face" she jested and wasn't fast enough to dodge the fist coming her way so she did what came to her head first; block. Bad move on her part, of course, seeing as it was electrically charged which made her wince at the current, sparing him a glare as she narrowed her hues scrutinizingly. "Oh, it's on." Sofi mostly tried to evade his attacks at first but she was never good at defense, anyone can see she is an offense with her twin daggers but she didn't have them utilized in this so she maneuvered her body to the side and tried to come up from behind and send one hit against his back.