Jaina's magic

Jaina Jade's portal magic has limitations. These are them.

Portals

Jaina Jade has the ability to open transrealm portals. The last time she was seen using this (Exploring The Outskirts), she used it to grab a bag without bumping into Weft. Mature, JJ.

Jaina's portals are not innate to her; they are a gift from an unknown benefactor of some power. She doesn't know this. She assumes it just somehow happened. This gift came with built-in training wheels, which is all that has kept her from portal-cutting off a foot or landing somewhere she would instantly die. This doesn't mean she can't go to unsafe areas, but it does mean that if there's no way she could survive at the other end, the portal either won't open or will insistently take her somewhere safe instead.

Jaina can control or influence the destination of her portals. She can use them to return to somewhere she's already been, or to find a place meeting loose requirements (e.g, "somewhere hot and humid" works, but "Whispin" doesn't, for this and other reasons; "somewhere with people" would generally deposit her at a standard RP bar, but "with Suitov" wouldn't work, because Suitov is not a destination fixed relative to local gravity. Also it would just be creepy if she could literally find people via magic. Icky.).

Portals opened by Jaina shimmer similarly to her skin. The light can be dimmed or changed in color (at least on the side she's on), but it cannot be extinguished without closing the portal. They maintain position relative to the local gravity, regardless of that gravity's strength; she can only portal in deep space if there's artificial gravity aboard a ship. (This came up in Ghost in the Machine). Gravity is not necessarily in the same direction on both sides of the portal, however, which is why Jaina's entrances infrequently result in her landing on her face. Each portal has a sort of "rim", ranging from about an inch thick to several inches (depending on distance between the portal's start and finish), which is smooth but slightly "grippy" - somewhat similar to a phone case. This means that Jaina can physically grab the "frame" of her portal while clambering through it, or lean on it like a windowsill.

When she portals, there are a few caveats:

  • She must strongly desire to be on the other side of the portal or the magic will unspectacularly fail.
  • Portals don't open instantly. She has to call up her life force and shape each portal for its specific destination, or for a random location.
  • Portalling to a new place weakens her, often giving her symptoms similar to a particularly nasty flu. She treats these with vodka. (Author's note: Never said she was smart, did I? For good reason!) Return journeys doesn't hurt nearly as badly.
  • The farther away her destination, the more she feels the effects. A long jaunt can affect her even if it's someplace she visits often, though to a lesser degree than a new place.
  • Her portals will not take her anywhere humans can't survive (e.g, she can't portal to deep space, but she can land aboard a spaceship), so she won't die in the vacuum of space but could still arrive on a battlefield. This protects her somewhat on excursion via random portal, though it may not apply if she fails to finish the portal—see next point.
  • If she is distracted at any point while opening a portal, the thing can explode, pushing her (and anyone in her immediate area) to all corners of the cosmos.

Perhaps the most significant example of Jaina's portals was when one went badly awry in Somebody Else's Shoes and somehow switched people's bodies around:

[Jaina's] skin shimmered as she concentrated on shaping a portal. A brilliant shape began to form in the air before her. It glowed in rhythm with her flesh, pulsing rapidly.

As she worked further on her spell, Jaina's knees began shaking beneath her. She slipped to one side, landing hard on one elbow. The portal flicked on her impact with the floor. She didn't breathe, hoping the spell was near enough to completion to be safe.

The glimmer in the air shook once, twice—

—and as Jaina shifted her arms to push herself upright, one wrist brushed against Lance's blood on the floor.

What the—oh, CRAP!

In her shock Jaina lost control of her magic. It exploded into light and profanity, although the latter might merely have been her reaction. A thousand splinters of light scattered right through the walls of Schemer's Corner, taking Jaina, Lance, and Weft with them.— Schemer's Corner, 8 Oct. 2003

It's still not clear how this happened, or how it got resolved.

Other

Jaina's understanding of magical resistance/assistance is largely tactile. Difficulty in opening a particular portal tends to register as blunt pressure focused at a non-physical part of herself. If she's having trouble reaching her desired result, she tends to curl and tense her fingers, as though making careful adjustments to invisible threads. She says it helps.

She has considerably less skill with non-portal magic.

She is capable of casting mild illusions on herself (e.g, changing her hair color). These fade entirely within hours, with no further action on her part.

She has a particular fascination with warding and defensive magics and will generally pursue those lines if they come up in conversation. She has had no success with them herself.

Categories: Jaina Jade, Magic, Bardic Web, Profusion

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