Like a Moth to a Flame

Bree accompanies Isabelle to the flame at the secret node of the tree network. She examines it and finds that it is not so much a flame as an ancient-type creature that she can only perceive as a flame. It finds her interesting, noting that she is broken and pieces of her are missing. "Yeah, they wandered off," she explains. "You're both bound and not bound," it ponders about both of the Amberites.

Isabelle proceeds with the "immolation" and Bree figures out a way to adjust her eyes such that she can actually watch this bizarre event. Bree sees Isabelle's form become flame. Its name is ^@$%^$%^. Isabelle comes to realize she has a deeper name as well. Everything looks so fragile, like glass sculptures. Bree looks like a cute, fragile, cracked.

The tree is an incredibly brilliant entity, intensely caring in its own gruff way. It wants to help, but it is bound by its oath to protect this tree, which turns out to be part of the entity Isabelle engaged with before. Its primary purpose is actually not to bestow everlasting life, but instead to almost "activate" them.

Every power initiation Isabelle has done are gone. Pattern, connection to the tree, clothes… Trump is a skill so that is retained. Gerhardt senses something and tries to trump Isabelle. He almost gets through to her but then he reaches Flame. He feels like the flame reached through the trump and experiences existential dread. He wakes up later to find that he burned down laboratory 4, according to his servants' account of the matter.

Jericho goes to the Nightmare realm and finds Silas and Dale there. She comes back a little while later and says she did find the source of where they're making the antidote. There are guardians at the door, but not forces. It's enough that they should not go in unprepared.

Fiona is not aware of the Pattern ever talking to anyone (although it did talk to Bree and Gerhardt). Brigid

Bree takes Isabelle to the Ranch to get some clothes, then they search out Gerhardt. They find him recovering from his flamboyant outburst. Bree helps Isabelle remember… fire spreading. Gerhardt sees nothing out of the ordinary, may be potentially restorative really. Bree sees through the Flame a whole panacea of existence. Pre-existence, existence, then time — in that order. There was memory and being before… @#$%^@#%&*.

Bree also found the conversation Gerhardt had with Flame: if Gerhardt goes on the journey to find himself, he should take someone with him that will be ready to kill him. "You should not be," Flame said to him. It also noted that the world is in fact broken, but destroying it won't fix it. Ancients are a bunch of entities that didn't follow what they were supposed to do. In varying degrees they are trying to get back to what they were supposed to do.

inflamity - being mentally consumed by flame and launched into madness.

Dale shows Jericho and Silas a group of creatures on the other side of the door. (Sorry I stepped away and missed stuff.) Dale asks Silas to go with her to see Valla. Jericho joins them. She says that Bastiano is a bit of a snake with long range plans that probably involve her no longer being in a position of power. The two inquire on her thoughts about them spying on her behalf. She's amenable.

Brigid ends up at Bastiano's personal abode.

Bree goes to talk to grumpy Brand again to get information out of him. He is indeed quite grumpy. Bree sneaks in….

Silas and Jericho go with Dale to meet Vala, the de facto leader of the Lords and Ladies of Gossamer and Shadow, where she reports about what was learned from Bastiano's world ("Cure World"), and his fast forces there. She expresses concern, but not shock. Dale also tells Vala of Silas' comments about Undershadow and Void, and she asks to him to elaborate on this. He tells her of how he can traverse it, open portals, and of an expecition they took to other side where he and Jericho saw the Dwimmerlaik city.

She mentions that if they can find out about expeditions that go into that world (apparently infrequent supply missions), she has a method where they can "join" it, though she says it will be difficult. Silas goes off to the Ascendency World near it on the stair, on the pretense of setting up trade and commerce with them, along with a squad of operatives undercover. It takes some time but he is able to learn of the expeditions that go there.

Jericho uses trump of… to go back to where he had been. The journey has him skirting the edges of the Sorcerer Kings' lands.

The demon's memory shows plague was not as "effective" as what hit Amber. Samples were taken from people at various stages. The village was razed to prevent discovery and spreading. It has some recognition of Bastiano and knows that they don't trust him even though they are working with him. They plan to betray him in the long term. Bastiano's people are basically working on an undetectable virus that has minimal effects and is extremely transmissible.

Bree and grumpy Brand plan to exchange memories in Gerhardt's secure facilities. Isabelle will play referee, but hopefully that won't be needed (fingers crossed).

Gerhardt has the murder knife dagger soul knife sacrificial thingy and is headed to see Dworkin.

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