Subject: Moira Drakengard
Re: Final Assessment of ability for entrance into beginner's level VDQAE Program
Report as follows: Inquisitor in charge of final assessment with subject faced a growing inability to read subject's intentions and motives during mental scans. Suggested taking subject to a dark site for more intensive questioning upon the advice of superiors of Head Inquisitor,<CLASSIFIED, EYES ONLY>. Transport lost enroute.
It is believed at this time, intial responding Inquisitor may have urged strongly for termination of subject without input from Director Endivain at this time.
She had to get away from here, and fast. Soon others would be sent... and if they found her she would be kille243d. She knew this... as surely as she knew she still drew breath that she would fight.
Behind her the stirring of survivors in the shuttle could be heard..
"Where is she?"
"I don't know. Where the blasted hell has that blasted wench gone!"
"Can't see crap in this wind!"
"Somebody check with the pilots, see if we can find her with the sensors."
"Holy Frakk, ... killed the pilots and the Captain!"
"She's got to be outside the shuttle then. Spread Out!"
"... the hell are you girlie. Get back here and I swear I'll gut you right here and now!"
With the skis as tight as she could make them she knew it was past time to go. She had eased her way off the stone and onto the skis, as the young woman pushed herself away sharply so she did not sink immediately into the deep powder...
"Sarge, she's got Rimton's skis and pack! He's already dead!"
"Damn it we have to go after her!"
"How in hell did she escape in the first place? She was tied up and stunned after Grimard let slip about the disposal orders!"
She smiled viciously to herself. She had always been good with knots... After working herself free she had tricked the captain to come close enough to take action, the captain had been simple to figure out, he simply wanted what all men of officer levels desired to some extent. Power, over their circumstances and the complete obedience of a prisoner. Basically the man had simply told her to shut up, or that he would make her shut up. When that hadn't worked the man had ordered his troopers to beat and kick her. Which they all did, to much of their enjoyment, never realizing that she slowly worked her way free. The captain had dragged her into the hold... alone. She didn't even want to think what was next on his mind. But that was where she promptly made him realize the error of his mistake. It had been too easy. Just a twist and a popping sound as her legs encircled his neck. After that she had grabbed the vibroblade from his belt and had secured herself in the cockpit after a short but brief scuffle with the pilots. She merely had to look out at the strange expanse of planet , a place that had hung there like a pristine yet wild jewel mixed with dark hues of green blue and white that held the entire expanse across the viewport. It had been too late to change course. The shuttle was already dialed in for reentry. So the young woman had sealed herself in before sitting into another seat and buckled herself in... waiting for the inevitable. When it came she had begun to practice her meditation, keeping her eyes closed and her body completely limp. Even so the impact as the emergency thrusters kicked in under the navigation computers control in an attempt to break the ships speed was barely enough to allow the shuttle to slow enough not to atomize itself during the impact. For a time, blessed darkness had been her only companion.
Now the woman's legs wobbled as she threshed down the slope, the powder piling to her knees before her desperate shifting of her weight and downward momentum combined to bring the ski tips upward. She was moving, the wind tearing at her face, her eyes, her body, arcing through her light armor and heavy cloak like they weren't even there. She tottered briefly at a scraping on the right ski, but leaned left and back, slowly - as she forced her track at an angle to the slope. Heading straight down would be a death sentence, even for her. Scccccttttttttchhh. . . Once more she corrected, and leaned into the hill, her hope to maintain her balance long enough until she was out of easy range of the snow troopers. With luck, with just a few of them left, she had a chance- more of a chance now, in the kind of terrain she knew... -at least better then the intrigues of fleet side living.
A mass of rocks appeared in her vision, out of the lighter curtains of snow ahead, as she began a wide sweeping, turn. The only kid she dared. The woman could feel the fiberglass polymers of the skis vibrate under her boots; the thongs biting through the heavy boot leather, but miraculously she stayed on the skis through the turn and into the narrower snow filled bowl downhill.. Behind her stretched the twin tracks of her skis, arching over the rock and ice beneath as they created a trail that would hopefully be covered soon by the growing storm. She couldn't
afford to look back. Instead she concentrated on the powdered surface ahead: untouched, virgin like her, but with hidden depths she would rather not find at the moment..
Also like her, she reflected, nearly frozen in place by the wind, for she flew downhill to fast to cinch up her cloak enough to protect herself from the air that slashed as her waterproofed layers of clothing, the leathers of her suit and unprotected face.
The woman went flying, and tried to tuck her short skis as close to her body as possible, as she rolled into a ball with her arms flailing. When she came to a rest, her buttocks were smarting and her ankle twisted sharply. Snow had been wedged into improbable parts of her body and her torso was lower than her legs. Slowly, she twisted around, levering the skis over herself and back towards the downhill slope, even though she couldn't see. Cold snow packed itself against her bare back where her light armor had ridden up along with her undershirt. With her footing semi secure, the woman wiped the snow from her face, studying the area around him. She had rolled nearly a kilometer downhill, stopped at last by a raised snow hummock through which poked through thin branches of bushes.
She paused, wiping both the instantaneous ice sweat and snow from her face as she began to study the area around her. Less than half a kilometer in front of her down into the valley, thick evergreen forests began. She took a deep breath and checked her borrowed pack.. relieved that it still clung to her. She struggled upright, brushing off the powder and clinging snow, that was distinctly less powdery and dry than on the slopes, where she had begun her wild descent.
In front of her in the valley lay a forest, the branches of the trees coated in ice, creating a maze of frozen tangles, amongst the darkened skies. It was like the forest itself was trying to express tension, and enclosure, while still revealing exposure. She shouldn't be here! Not Now. She had done nothing! Absolutely nothing! How had she wound up in this mess? Damn it! She never should have trusted those Federation bastards! What had she done to do to deserve 'disposal' like this? Nothing! She didn't have time to muse about her circumstances. She had to go forward... there was nothing else she could do but move on through the woods, towards the rise of the next large mountain as she prayed that her pursuers might have lost her.
The day before...
She had stared into a simple cup of water that contained a leaf that floated upon the water.
She didn't want to be here and it showed in her demeanor... She wasn't some animal for them to experiment with, to do some inane and boring test! Or was it to make her the butt of one of their jokes? (Why had that man ordered her here to do this?) So it was for this reason , this stubbornness alone that she would give them nothing. Absolutely one hundred percent nothing...
For the last eight hours as she merely concentrated with her palms next to the glass she had stopped almost everything about herself... Making her heartbeat slow as in the glass, nothing happened. That is what she desired now, a means to spite anyone who foolishly thought this test meant anything or was worth a damn...
The arbiter looked upon the room with his subject, feeling that something wasn't right here. The woman had once been part of the group that tried to kill the Emperor. She had been and was still very much considered a threat. Perhaps she still was intending harm to those who headed the Omega Order. Such things were beyond him. His purpose here today was merely to judge to ascertain her potential, to see if something stronger lay within. The young woman in his view had shown many times reports of potential. The readings of her life signs were almost completely out of sorts for what was occurring. Her heartbeat had slowed. Her lungs had increased in their Oxygen counts. But nothing was happening now.
Absolutely Nothing. Completely, out of sorts for someone that others had already seen to have some potential.
All in all her pardon had be secured so long as she was truthful in her cooperation. Was she here now, hiding her true abilities? Still a threat to the Order? With a heavy minded balancing of equations he pondered the facts. If the woman was too far adept at hiding within herself then she did not deserve a chance to continue in her present guise. The stay of execution would be removed and the girl would be sent for disposal. And the best way to do that without complications would be to trick her into believing that some sort of job for her had come up...
"Miss. There's a situation and your sponsor for the NIF is requesting your presence there."
Moira laughed, so it had been a test, maybe of her patience? Well she was sure she was going to make that man regret messing with her like this today! "Well finally, I was wondering when he'd tell me why I was really here." The woman took the glass and bolted the water down in her thirst before she spit out the leaf and slammed it down angrily in the spot it originally had been... This entire thing had been pointless in her eyes. A complete waste of time. She then got up and brushed her hand back through her short hair, as she lithely stretched, winking to the trooper. "I can't tell you how bored I am with all this tomfoolery. Who ever heard of sitting in front of a damned glass of water for hours at a time? It's a complete waste of my youth!"
Back in the present:
The young woman ran through the forests of the high valley, coming up to a series of gorges that had been rent by the mountain streams. In front of her , misted by snow and ice fog, lay a icy an icy snow-swept expanse of a deep ravine. It was here that the high valley's elevation plummeted into a deep gorge. The frozen stream in front of her to get here now tumbled down through the precipitous landscape in giant sized steps of towering waterfalls, their course frozen to pure ice, locked in time. There was no way down in this direction. Only a small path to the side lay ahead, a notch in the rock that angled away towards the next peak . The inches of her exposed skin felt wind-burned and abraded. Her breath puffed white into the frigid air. The snow here was a bout a foot's depth now and it would be hard going on without snowshoes. She knew she would never make it across the next traverse of land, not with her hands cold and almost frostbitten. She had to find shelter of some sort, get out of the cold and warm up. That was her first priority now.
She made her way to the edge of the steep precipice that loomed before the sharp dropoff leaning dangerously over the side as she grabbed the closest tree branch that clung from the sides of the ravine. She searched for a sign from the closest frozen waterfall, as her father had taught her. Its leeward side was somewhat sheltered. She might be able to use that. Sliding her but down an incline that she possessed a particularly steep patch of snow. As she had been instructed as a child she had searched where the black rock joined with the bluish tinged white ice. On many planets summer snowmelts of higher mountain chains turned waterfalls into powerful torrents, with almost as much power as turbolaser, as they carved out deep pockets in the rocks. When it finally came time for winter, the water tended to recede and freeze, often leaving an empty space behind it.
With a sense of relief, the woman saw this waterfall was no exception. With a prayer to her ancestors for their wisdom, she shattered a little of the grimy ice between the waterfall and the rock with her elbow. She could see a small cave open beyond. Turning on her side, she squeezed through, grabbing a small one time use glowlamp from her pack, grateful for its greenish light as the bacteria inside interacted with the chemicals to light her way. It looked safe She should be able to weather out the storm here. Out of the wind and snow, she could feel the warmth returning to her cheeks. She shielded the glowlamp and turned to the waterfall as her breath caught in her throat. Even now, scared as she was she couldn't help but be moved at the colors of light displayed in front of her. The ice wall seemed to collect rampant flashes of light outside the storm let through as it became amplified. The frozen waterfall scintillated and glowed.
The woman shook herself physically, now wasn't the time to admire the view. She paused a moment to consider her options. She hadn't seen any signs of pursuit in the storm's fury. Hopefully she'd be too far away for them to discover her location. No, they couldn't find her here., all she heard outside was the wind whispering through the enameled fir trees that stood fifteen feet high upon the ridge above. Preserved in the snow for the Force knew how many thousands of years . She remained quiet as she plotted her next steps...
She ripped open the rest of the pack, findng an insulating cold weather blanket that appeared like one side possessed a metallic sheen. Despite its thinness such things were well worth their weight in gold amongst the mountains. The fabric helped a hiker of someone lost retain almost ninety percent of radiated body heat. She spread it over the cold rock and searched the rest of the pack finding a small flameless survival heater with a butane cylinder for an emergency source of heat. She thumbed the electric switch to start it up as she slowly removed her freezing, sopping wet boots, making sure to warm her raw appendages, fingers, toes, ears and nose. Anything that could potentially be frozen and suffer frostbite. She then piled as much clothing between herself and the in an attempt to limit loss of heat from conduction.
The upturned packs contents showed some ration bars and she was more than sure she had enough snow to melt for water, if the canteen lacked any form of thirst quencher. Taking out one of the bars she ate, and drank something that seemed to send her stomach a wash of electrolytes from the canteen. She would need the calories for later...Snow fell outside the hidden rocky dugout like chrysalides' in autumn, so beautiful and achromatic, even as her arms were cold. In the frozen stream of the waterfall she could see her reflection take on an ashen and rosy look. Like she had seen on the faces of children who played out with their sibling amongst the snow, making her seem younger than she knew she truly was. In the midst of warmth, tired . She fell asleep , sure that her body would wake in an hour or so. Her dreams began to be filled with all sorts of colors. Things around her seemed more acute to all her senses now, the surrounding more detailed as the colors showed greater vibrancy. Her breath came soothing in her ears as the storm above rolled in above, heavier than before...
The Arbiter of the Commisarriat sat and read the message on the screen, The prisoner being sent for disposal had escaped. He sent back a message saying that soon he would come to the world the shuttle had crashed upon to aid in the search...
She was awoken by a scuffing sound coming from the entrance of her shelter. They survivors had found her hiding place. Of course, the infrared. Damn it. How could she have missed that? Dumb, just plainly and simply dumb! Grabbing her knife she threw on her boots and prepared herself. She'd have to take the first one quickly.
Blood, it had littered and stained the snow all around her, she had been forced to fight, to kill, the motions of death coming easy to her in her attempts to flee. That had been hours ago.. Now the
air was painfully cold. It stung her fingertips; making them cracked, peeling, and sore. It hit her lungs with every deep breath and obscured her vision with every exhale. She felt her nose warm with each passing gasp of air. She was sure it was red by now though she couldn't see it.
Not through the snow that had begun to fall. Overhead dark black storm clouds drifted ominously over the cliff's edge, and lightning flashes illuminated the figure standing dangerously close to the precipice. Long silver hair flowed, dampened, down trembling shoulders. Vibrant silver eyes sent tears trailing down flushed cheekbones to join the droplets of rain. It was the worst kind of storm on this planet, maybe the worst place in the galaxy to be. Her hands were clasped in a silent prayer of self reflection. Her lips murmured reverently in the face of the storm. Her white battledress and black cloak whipped in the wind, creating a flag that swirled around her. A silver pendant from her mother hung from her neck. The blue stone in the center of the silver sphere that was gripped in an owl's talon twinkled faintly as lightning flashes of the storms fury washed over her as sheets of half frozen sleet and snow began to swell into an intermittent downpour of tiny scalpels that sought to carve and mold her into something new.
This place was a caldera of the natural elements. Dangerous. Yes -dangerous in the extreme, But for some reason it felt truly wonderful to her senses. As if the fury of the tempest around her mirrored her own life's actions. After a slight moment's pause to thank the galaxy for allowing her to witness this sight, she began to run along the cliff's edge seeking to climb up to the distant precipice, racing the storm to reach the pinnacle of granite and rock that challenged her. But she was smiling.
It was unbelievably dark already. She could barely see the ground in front of her; but she felt it as her feet pounded heavy against the jagged surfaces of the cliff. She felt the detail of the land as her muscles distributed the impact each time the shock of her boot touched down against the earth. The storm was all around her now, The bright flashes of light from the sky were her only illumination of the path ahead. I quickly and cautiously move to the side. Her steps felt different now; softer and slippery. One landed in a puddle of slush and ice causing her to trip and fall in an uncontrolled tumble to the ground. The stinging cuts of her scraped knees and slightly gashed were a poignant reminder to her of the need for caution. Her brain knew what this was telling her; that she shouldn't be here to take the risk of this journey. But she dismissed such things unequivocally. She had to, as she knew one could never experience something if they did not try. The pain hurt, but she was still smiling as she continued on, the essence of her being filling her with joy as her soul reflected the unfettered power of the storm.
Her laughter came out now. A laughter garnered by her own sense of amusement as it was directed at herself, her past, her present life, and her future. Her strides began to lengthen as she continued on her off road journey as she closed her eyes. She didn't know how or why but she knew the path beneath by the fall of her feet now. She knew every pebble by its feel beneath the soles of her shoes. The patter of her running strides seemed to combine with the sound of her beating heart as it echoed in her eardrums. All of it created a song that was truly hers. A song in the midst of so many changes, yet still familiar to her. Her pace quickened; her stride lengthened; She push herself harder than she had ever done before. She breathed in twice now for every breath out, running uphill literally and figuratively through her memories and the wilderness.
Soon she reached the end of her climb. Opening her eyes and stopping swiftly, she leaned over. She was panting for breath; her dark shadows stood in flashes of stark contrast to the yellowish arcs of lightning which now illuminated her. She couldn't help but notice her mouth, agape with smile. She raised her arms to the sky as she steadied herself against the forces which assailed her. Uncaring about the rain slickened blood scabbing on her soil marked legs and palms. She was alone in the semi darkness. She was a creature now, one who was obscured in shadow that was rent by random patterns of light. A creature that laughed in the face of a universe which had tried its damnedest to make her fall, make her break herself as her life had been dashed to pieces, a force of the universe which seemed uncaring in its regard to her . A universe that now had sent a storm to flay her skin and rattle her bones, but still she stood, knowing that whatever didn't kill her only served to make her stronger.
She wondered about the tempest around her. How it had formed from the simplest eddies of air currents... How a single gust of wind may have churned something deeper. Something that had stood in a state of potential. Just waiting for a chance... to become something else. She pondered on the metamorphosis around her as she 'felt' droplets of water in her mind as she visualized what must have frozen each molecule. How each strand of chains formed clusters of icy snowflakes. Each one different and unique. A shining example of beauty amidst an ugly world, even if such beauty was fleeting.
Her people had always tried to develop their ability to visualize images and control their thinking. What their scientists had found was that over millennia was that the trained mind, or sentient's brain, is physically different from the untrained one. It acted differently than normal, having a much higher degree of gamma waves and that the longtime practitioners showed brain activation on a scale they had never seen before. In previous studies, mental activities such as focus, memory, learning and consciousness were associated with the kind of enhanced neural coordination found in those studied. The intense gamma waves found in the subjects had been associated with knitting together disparate brain circuits, and so were connected to higher mental activity and heightened awareness. The ones who practiced such meditation were recorded to possess higher brain activity during times when not deeply in meditation. The woman on the ridge had been practicing such measures now for almost her entire life. And now amidst the storm that woman felt an utter clarity and focus of simply being where she was. Like she was beginning to feel everything around her as her mind was involved in its own version of sensory overload.
She felt like she was now deeply in meditation but still she was alive and awake. It perplexed her. What had begun to change since this morning? She began to take stock of her surroundings more closely amidst the darkness. In front of her lay a wide body of water far below her current elevation. She could see the swells, troughs, and eddies of its waves crashing to the rocky shores as lightning pierced the watery depths from the up high. Behind her, lay her only witness to her personal struggle to stand in the face of this tempest. A lone sentinel that shared this rocky outcropping and would be left behind when she departed. It was a single tree that struggled each day to survive in the face of such adverse conditions. An ancient conifer of some kind. It root system split the rock below it they burrowed deep into the rocky fissures creating shallow hollows that seemed to shelter the smaller scrub grass that took root beneath it. She knew the purpose of its roots, they were there to seek the waters that gave it life as its twisted and gnarled branches reached up towards the sky to gain sustenance from the light of the too brief days. A dichotomy of needs twisted by their environment, much like herself and that man who had made her awaken her to her senses enough to realize the universe wasn't the way it seemed. She turned her attention back to the waves, still consumed by the storms rampant fury , she shouted her name to the skies until her voice became scratchy and discordant as she declared that she would go beyond them to reach even greater heights, to grasp the stars themselves. All under her own power if need be...
With her resolve shouted to the natural world she went back to rest beneath the tree. Her mind was scattered as she had been caught up in the storm's fury and she wished to test herself to see if she could return her senses to what they had been and then to their current state. She knew it was foolhardy to chase such a storm, and more so to stay and bear the brunt of its but here, sitting in the darkness. Thinking about everything she had been through, she never thought she would get hurt so many times. She never thought she would feel anything but pain that seemed so real. But , even now she couldn't resist the temptation; the temptation to pit herself against anything that would drive her forward in her own growth. The clothes she wore were soaked and it seemed she was getting colder now. She was too far from proper shelter, and if she wasn't careful she could soon slip uncontrollably into shivers and hypothermia.
She went back to the ancient withered bark , a remnant of snow covered forests that stood upon the mountain here long ago. Frozen by embrace of the winters wind. Buried by times wake. The tree to her at that moment seemed alive. Speaking in the howling wind that ripped its way through its roots. The voices echoing the shadows of the dead, ghosts, forgotten spirits. The voices seemed hidden in slumber but now to be brought awake from the winter’s cold embrace. As she did so she could feel the tenseness and unease gradually seeping from her as she relaxed and serenity took the place of her emotions. Right now such things would make her falter, make her die. At least in this small half hollow the winds were not as stringent to her senses. Not as cold. She began to feel a false sense of warmth. A bad sign. In haste, with bleeding fingernails she pulled as much snow away from the breadth of the tree trunk, seeking to uncover the fallen evergreen needles below. Even with its ancient pockmarked visage and twisted branches it seemed important and precious to her in its own right, beautiful even in its ugliness. Ever green and growing. And more importantly, it was a source of hope. Hope, that she would survive.
She set herself down keeping the needles between her and the cold ground, in order to prevent induction. Her thoughts traveled back as she remembered learning this technique at her mother's side, "First you must make yourself comfortable. Sit on a chair or on the floor if you can. Arrange your legs in the most comfortable position and make your backbone as straight as an arrow. Place your hands in the meditative equipoise just below your navel. Place the left hand on the bottom and the right on top with your thumbs touching to form a triangle. Your hands are now in the gesture of meditation. The nerve channel associated with the mind of and its functions seems passes through the thumbs. Thus, joining of the two thumbs in this gesture is of auspicious significance for the future development of the mind of enlightenment. Furthermore this placement of the hands has connection with the place inside the body where inner heat is generated."
That was the point of this mantra, to learn control over the physical self. When asking her mother how she did it. She had to been told to Relax, to focus on the Tung Mo Meditation. To picture air coming into out of one's body as energy. To visualize as a flame a fire coursing through the chest and to simply be fully conscious of her body. There were legends amongst her people that told of one person who had been so old they had actually heated themselves up so much during this exercise that they had mummified themselves.
"Now bend the neck down slightly. Let the top of the tongue touch the roof of the mouth near the top of the teeth. In some meditative practices the eyes are focused on the tip of the nose but for this exercise let the eyes gaze gently downwards. Gaze without straining toward the floor in front of you. Do not open the eyes wide rather let the lids relax. Occasionally they may close of their own accord. Do not worry about this, once your mental equilibrium is steady the eyes will fix naturally into the gaze. Become aware of how your mind is becoming quiet and how your breathing is slowing down."
She could feel her body respond to herself as she came to grips with herself. Remembering how this was taught to her. Her mother had set her father's ship's life support to chill the cargo bay to approximately four degrees Celsius, before she had wrapped a shivering and naked girl in an all encompassing blanket of wet sheets. It was a necessary way of teaching this method, usually reserved for children who were approaching their time of Adulthood. But her parents thought she could attempt this at an earlier age. This meditation could increase their temperature enough to get the sheets steaming, and dry the sheets. Or control ones breathing enough to begin decreasing the amounts of oxygen they needed, in older followers of Tung Mo Meditation might actually decrease their metabolism by sixty four percent... but she had only been able to reach the lower forties required in this meditation for the requirements of a grand master back before a rather bad group of people had gotten their claws into her. Hopefully, she could bring back what she had been taught from practice to reality.
"Now you will shift the attention away from the mind and meditate on an object of observation. In meditative techniques these can be external or internal. Something with spiritual significance or symbolism can be used in this technique. You can choose any item you which such as a flower, a cross or perhaps the face of someone you hold dear to your heart. For this exercise think of what you pictured is about four feet in front of you at the same height as the eyebrows. It is about two inches high and is radiating light. As well as using your visual imagination also conceives of it as being heavy this will help you to fix the attention further. The heaviness is said to prevent over excitement and the brilliance of the light will prevent laxity. You have two objectives: the first make the object of observation clear and the last to make it steady."
She chose to focus on her father's pendant, a twin to her mother's that she wore around her neck save for the image of the wolf it held as her mother's held an owl. The two pieces had made up a family heirloom and had been part of the same necklace originally that had been split upon the day they were married. It was lost now, gone forever. The last night she remembered seeing it up close was the night as a child of only six years. It was one she couldn't forget. She sat with her parents at around the campfire. It had been the rudest wake-up call she had ever received. They'd given her the answers to the questions that lied in the deepest graves inside her mind, which struggled to reach fresh air... and still those answers only spawned more questions. NO! She had to focus now! Not ruminate upon the past. If she fell into herself here she would lose this battle. And her life was what depended on it.
The image of the other half of the pendant came back to her mind, as she saw the lines of the animal's pelt in great detail. She had always liked the way the flame hued hairs of the piece seemed curve along with the body like fur that was on fire. The place where the silver eye would be would reflectively partake the blue hue of the jewel. It's ears detailed in finest silver. But the outer edgework of her native people's language were blurred in her mind. The rim of engraved calligraphy almost completely behind her ability to see. Lost in a red image of vagueness as bits of cold spiked into her consciousness as she struggled to maintain her focus.
The stock hard voice of her mother comforted her back then as it did now, " Don't give up! Observe your thoughts and impressions. Are the things you see with your eyes bothering you? If they are then close the eyes and observe what you see. If you see a reddish appearance when the eyes are closed then you are too involved in eye consciousness. Try to withdraw the attention from the eye to the mental consciousness. Your attention should be entirely concentrated on the image that you are visualizing. The steadiness of your observation of your item will fluctuate depending upon the excitability of your thoughts. To stop this scattering withdraw the mind even more within so that the intensity of your thinking begins to lower. To help this process it is advised that should briefly think about something somber. These weighty thoughts will slow down the heightened mode of appreciation of the token image you are visualizing. This will increase the stability of your mental inner observation."
It was now that she barely recognized the worldly thoughts of her predicament as the concentration of her mind became a shell, a shell protecting her from every source of stimuli coming from without. Her mind was sheltering her like the roots of this tree she huddled under in the real world. Knowing that with it keeping out the chill air and howling winds that she might be able to survive this as her mind continued its processes. The young woman concentrated like never before, her crossed legs forgotten. The bite of the cold winds that seeped through the roots to the side her. Without conscious thought her hands placed slightly in front of her legs now, with just barely touching thumbs and fingertips settled upon the edge of a puddle of ice, encapsulated by the snow and freezing temperatures that kept the landscape draped in white.
The image began to get clearer now within her , as her focus item became more outlined in detail with flames of fire set in the background. It's appearance made her visualize the wolf pendent as a shadowy form bathed and outlined by the fire's growing light. The tendrils of the flames seemed to warp and reach out in her direction.. Letting her bask its warm embrace... like a fur coat that draped around her consciousness.. Her mother's voice returned seeming warmer now, Soothing and inviting. But now it was accompanied by her father's as well..
" Good, my child, Good. You'll make it, I have faith in you. But keep going! To get the balance right you must also develop clarity. The biggest enemy of this is laxity which can lead to lethargy and the complete loss of the mental image. This is caused by an over-withdrawal of the mind. To stop this you must raise the mode of appreciation. It is the opposite of what you did in order to get stability of the observation. This time you should think of something that makes you feel joyous or exhilarated such as looking at a beautiful scene from the mountain tops. This will lift the mind and heighten its mode of appreciation. You must judge the appropriate times when you need to increase your clarity or stability of your mental picture. Notice how by controlling your somber and joyous thoughts you affect the mental picture that you are creating. Now inspect the mental image that you have created in your mind's eye. Observe it from all angles; from above, from the corners. Is it both clear and stable? Observing the mental image in this way is called 'introspection' . By learning to do this you can control the steadiness and clarity of the mental picture you are at the same time controlling the mind which will then control the body. When you develop mindfulness, you can catch laxity and excitement of thoughts before they arise and even control the arising of these thoughts."
In a similar way the meditating person can look at the mind itself and she had to do so now. If she did not remain in the trance she would falter and die. The consciousness of the woman become empty like clear water. Water that was warm below and a covering layer of ice that seemed to germinate itself in her mind just beyond the flames of the wolf which helped to give her warmth. Over the next few hours that seemed like minutes she sat as the tree behind her did. Unmoving as the Storm washed over her, through her and past her as she envisioned that ice shell taking the form of something else, an avian with sheltering wings that were spread around its young.
Amidst the weather and the wind her mind began to see other things, things that gripped her just as her earlier terrible memories, except these things were of her that she knew that never happened. Things which seemed so real, combining with the smells of what she knew and what she might have dreamed of and never remembered, yet distorted by images that couldn't be. That were impossible to behold... sights filled with colors that seemed to shape themselves around other beings that seemed to whisper to her their moods, dreams, and aspirations. Red for love or lust, Orange for mirth, Yellow for happiness, Green for disease, Purple for sadness black for depression, white for the thoughts of animals and plants with shades of brown... But the worst color of them all was Blue. Light Blue for wariness. Dark Blue for killing intent.. All these colors swarmed together as her mind maintained her concentration to keep her alive as her parents cries faded in her ears like they were getting farther away. She was losing herself now by bits and pieces as her mind forced her to survive what would kill many others, and for a moment it lost its grip as it plunged deeply into what something in the future might be if it occurred.