No dreams. No portents. No wild messages from a direction I did not expect. Just me. And the gear. And the crippling doubt that this is all refined bullshit and I’m fooling myself by this grown-up version of the game “Let’s Pretend” because reality is a little hard to deal with right now.
I know this for what it is, but knowing doesn’t help me in the least.
I know I can’t magic my way out of this. But I can magic my way through. If I believed in magic. When it hits, my world becomes grayscale. I can see colors just fine, but they don’t register. Everything is flat. Music is intolerable noise. And standing in the middle of an almost dark room to speak prayers to a god I don’t understand to compel a spirit I probably made up to console myself with isn’t really making me feel any better about myself.
“[Patient Caller]… I’m spiritually blind and deaf at the moment, so if you’re gonna show yourself, you’re gonna have to make it unmistakable. Otherwise, I’m going to stop lying to myself, drag all this shit out front, and set it on fire.”
A fiery six-pointed star flares in front of my face. As it fades, I see a shadowy hand retreating from it. Light plays along the multiple large rings on the fingers.
Before I can recognize the symbol or the rings, the hand attempts to strike me. Another fiery star flares from what should have been the point of impact. Then another attempted strike on the other side of my face that ignites another star. Then in front of my face. Again, and again, and so many times again that I lost count and so fast that I could not count each attempt.
His hands are clasped on the book behind the polished amber. He says nothing. I say nothing.
The tears follow the cord to cool the amulet against my skin.
«You do not need to believe to be protected. I do not need your belief to exist. You do not need anyone’s belief to exist. You only need to be.»
I’m tired. As much as I wanted to just walk away and crawl back into bed, I still had enough sense to know that’s not the “right way” to end today’s “game”. I still have responsibilities to face. And a need to earn today’s paycheck via the game of “Adulting”.
I spoke the Apophenia Invitation slowly and deliberately, followed by the License to Depart. Closing once again with Psalm 54, my voice sounded hollow as I gave the final command of “Go all now in peace.”
Total ritual time: 37 minutes.