"Just a Wisp of Hope" by Lukewarm_Yeti

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This one is certain the mage had never actually believed this one's kind existed. This one is sure that the mage had not intended to summon this one. This one is confident that this one was not wanted. This one was scared for what the mage would do next, and before this one knew it, this one was...

This one was floating in the ether, waiting for a mage to summon it. This one was waiting with the others, each of those ones also awaited the day they could become corporeal at the side of a mage. The number of us that left was decreasing, and the number that came back was declining even further; yes, those ones always returned, but from longer and longer trips. This one, this one had only been outside of the ether once. For a mage named Arthur, but this one had never been needed, and so this one never had the chance to corporealize. This one returned to the ether as Arthur's last breath was drawn.

This one's time came once more. This one found itself watching the walls as the ether shifted, watching the other ones as they faded away, and this one was left above a symbol on the ground that this one recognized. A star within a circle... Definitely unique circumstances for one of this one's kind to be summoned through, but this one was excited simply to once again be a part of the corporeal realm.

This one scanned the room and saw this one's mage. A child - actually hardly younger than Arthur had been upon accidentally summoning this one - who was dressed in strange material of pitch black nature. This one couldn't see the mage's eyes behind its great, dropping crown of matted, black hair. This one sensed blood, knowing it was the mage's blood. The mage was in danger! This one prepared to spring into action, only to notice that the circle-and-star had been drawn with the mage's blood, and there were no others in the room.

This one questioned how such a thing could happen: how could a mage use its own blood to summon one of this one's kind from the ether? This situation had never been told to this one before, even though this one had heard every story from each of this one's kind.

"Damn," said this one's mage. "Damn, damn, damn." They turned away from the circle-and-star and sighed deeply. They rested their head into their hands and shouted angrily. "Why doesn't it ever work!?" they shouted. This one floated down until it was in contact with the ground to the mage's left. They raised their head from their hands and turned back to the circle-and-star, looking to where this one had just been, and they said, "Unless you're there and don't want to show yourself!" No response came from the air. This one was reminded of Arthur's master, Merlin, who had pretended not to see this one when Arthur once asked for help to summon a "familiar." Merlin showed Arthur, but Arthur had already summoned this one, so Arthur simply shouted and screamed at the empty air when he failed to summon another of this one's kind.

"Perhaps," this one considered, "this one ought to put more effort into assuming a form for the sake of this one's mage this time."

This one's mage stood and left the room, proceeding down and out into what this one could only describe as a manor, given its ornateness and vast array of colors accross the walls. The mage entered another room, closing the door to it with great force. This one passed through the door, and saw a much more dark-tinted color scheme in this room specifically. The room had been decorated with small stopped-time-moments. This one wondered how great indeed this one's mage was if they could capture others into moments of time and make them decoration. Perhaps foes this one's mage had vanquished?

The mage caught this one's attention once more, as they reached underneath of the bed - also colored purely in black - to find an effigy of a yellow-eyed, tailed animal. This one had seen many others of this one's kind who had turned into one of those beasts to act as familiars to their mages. This one wondered how, but also wondered if this one should assume that form as well. There didn't seem to this one to be much other choice, so the decision was made and this one entered the effigy. This one's sense was immediately replaced by those of eyes, ears, nose, skin, and tongue. It felt... natural to this one to be in this form. This one tried to speak to this one's mage, but only a soft mewling sound echoed from this one's new body. This one's mage pushed this one away and stared for a great long while at this one. This one attempted speech again. "Maowr..."

This one's mage screamed, kicking this one to the wall, where this one felt a small shock of what this one had to assume was pain. A voice from below called out, "Are you okay, sweetie?"

"I'm fine, mom!" shouted this one's mage. "What the hell are you?" This one could now feel what the mage felt, and could sense fear and anger. This one fumbled with the new legs until this one was standing for the first time.

This one started walking towards the mage. "Mrowr," this one said, "Mya~aowrrr." This one was so happy to finally be seen and acknowledged by a mage, this one could only just contain the feeling within the new body.

The mage reached down and picked this one up. "You're..." The mage stared into this one's new eyes. "You're not going to hurt me. Why do I feel so happy to see you?"


This one's mage hugged this one tightly. This must have been what the others meant when they spoke of "home." This one was home now. This one was home.
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