"I can't say I blame her, Puddin...and it's very nice to meet you." Bringing her eyes back to where she suspected the woman's face was, she resisted the urge to curtsy, biting her non-corporeal lip as she tried to at least look like she wasn't a mass of nerves. Eddie wasn't the only one who would have preferred the comfort of contact just at the moment, and it was nearly certain the smith was going to be in for it the next time she saw him. After the reunion. Tahlia had some idea what this moment meant to all of them, after all.
"You're the one who has them making warding gestures. I'm not sure that you are quite what I expected. Of course I only had the pieces of conversation to go by." Lumira's eyes practically glowed as they fixed on Tahlia. Whether that was from the presence of friendly faces or the reuniting with her family was open for discussion. It was the healthiest of her attributes at the moment. The imposing figure who'd struck down Orsine, upon closer inspection, was a little too pale. Her hair, a stark contrast to that paleness lacked the kind of fullness and luster that regular care would have brought out. There was a thinness to her fingers and the rest of her as well. She was fed, but obviously not nearly enough to keep her healthy. "What did you do, E.J? It hasn't been so long that I don't know when I hear a crash that you've broken something." That crash had been impossible to miss, having shaken things up even here.
"It wasn't me...I was just trying to get out of the way." Eddie's tone was awash in complete innocence. It wasn't really his fault that the livyatan had broken the place, right? He looked at Tahlia for help to corroborate his story, because witnesses held weight! "We don't have much time though, the lower floors are taking on water... for some unknown reason." He was still affecting the angelic look that had only lost a little of its power because he'd grown up. Something else that wasn't his fault. "I can backtrack to where I came in, but... I don't think we're getting out that way." It was a little too high to reach that hole. Just a few meters or so.
Tahlia managed to hold the smirk at bay long enough to nod in support of Eddie's version of events. After all, she couldn't swear that he hadn't been innocently minding his business when the sea monster happened to attack. It wasn't likely, but it was possible. "Uh...yes. Apparently. I'm not sure why, but that does seem to be the usual response. I don't think I'm what any of them expects, either, if that helps."
For the first time, the true weight of where they were, and the predicament they were in hit her. "I...have no idea. We obviously came in different places." Tahlia closed her eyes, trying to retrace her steps. "I had to go up to get to where I met you...there was a...forge." Of course. "If the lower levels are flooded, it probably is too. But I didn't come in through the same portal you did..."
"They're all superstitious." Lumira released Eddie as she said the words to Tahlia as if that was enough to explain everything. "That's the way we're supposed to go, that's what I was told anyway." She stepped back and looked at her son. "Pay attention, and do what I do." She pushed aside the blankets on the bed they'd given her to reveal a pelt as red as her hair should be. Picking it up she didn't even drape it over her shoulders, it just seemed to come alive and mould itself to her cladding her in leather from ankle to neck. There were gaps, her arms were bare, and the length of her back though this was at least covered by her hair. "Do you understand?"
Eddie concentrated, attempting to mimic what his mother had done and was only half successful. His long coat had melted away, sliding down his torso to become a pair of pants that didn't look nearly so protective as what Lumira had managed. He gave a small shrug to her. "Best I can do... now who told you where we needed to go?"
"Your brother was here just a bit before you... sort of here...mostly not." She put a hand up towards Tahlia as if that should explain enough. "He said to follow her." It was clear by her expression that there had been other things said that she was holding back. "Something about not being able to maintain multiple doorways." It made more sense to her, having heard what Tahlia said about coming through a different portal. It may have explained that much, but there was a lot more going on than met the eye. Her eyes shot to the door, having caught the movement of the knob. Even if she hadn't seen it, she'd been in here long enough to recognize the sound of it.
Tahlia exchanged looks with Eddie at the mention of his brother. She might have also snuck a rather appreciative look over his now bare torso, because, in all honesty, who wouldn't? Especially since all she could do was look. Maybe that's why he'd done it? It only distracted her for a moment. Dragging her eyes away at the sound of someone, or something, on the other side of the door, the blonde cursed softly. Lumira was in no condition, and while she and Eddie were a force to be reckoned with - they were both unarmed. What she needed, was a weapon.
"We need to get out here first..." The hand tugging at her braid was reflex, and just happened to twist her head enough to catch a glint of metal coming through the wall - no more substantial than she was. It was...something, at least, and with only a second's hesitation she reached out and took hold of the hilt. The blade gleamed, slightly curved, somehow both present and not. "Hey, Puddin...your brother is a little creepy..." Who else could have done it? Glancing over at Lumira, she gave a little shrug. No offense meant, but she didn't think there would be much argument either.
Showoff was the word that Eddie was muttering, regardless of the fact that he was standing there half dressed. That was something entirely different! The door opened filled by an armored Mer leading his entry with the tip of a long spear. Eddie was quick to grasp the shaft and yank it to the side leaving the intruder wide open for Tahlia's new little friend to find a place to poke him. Far from the aggressive attack earlier, this one had Lumira backpedaling to wall the first real indicator that she was far from recovered. She had put everything into that single expulsion of fire and water.
It was strange watching the blade move forward its form as translucent as the wielder and yet the Mer's physical body felt the impact and subsequent tearing through armor and flesh underneath. It was a display that Eddie would have marvelled at even applauded if the feat hadn't been engineered by... showoff supreme.
The Mer didn't really have a chance, they couldn't touch the blonde wielding the the strange blade - although the sword itself seemed to stop them from touching her regardless. Tahlia tried, at first, simply to keep them back, to give them space to plan. Soon enough she realized that they weren't going to give up, and just...let them out. The holographic girl and her strangely solid weapon wasn't enough to break their ranks, even if there were murmurs of 'Misery Woe' from those who were face to face with her.
Puffing her hair from her eyes, she changed tactics, peridot eyes taking on a silvery gleam as her movements shifted - now she was on the attack. A tight spin of her wrist took a blade, and the hand it was attached to, and a step had a Mer falling in half to the ground. She had no idea how long she could keep it up, the energy sustaining her had to come from somewhere. Nothing landed on her, nothing touched her, she moved like a deadly ghost, pausing only to glance back to the two Selkies - Eddie might recognize the look on her face from a different time and place.
Eddie's grin was for the little blonde murderess, he did like to watch her move. There wasn't space for the two of them, which was mirrored by the way the door forced the Mer to come in one at a time. It didn't take long for him to be able to join her though, the hand on the spear fell away allowing the big Selkie to take it for himself. Its reach let him attack from further back, the tip alternating between low and high thrusts. He kept the point moving in and out, circling lazily or swift and tight. He'd have preferred something a little louder that had an even better range, but there were no shotguns or pistols in this place. Even if he'd managed to bring one with him it would have needed a thorough cleaning if it were to function after the swim. He took what he could get, and used it with deadly intent.
Together, he and Tahlia pushed forward through the door and into the room beyond. It was slow, but a glance at his mother said that slow was all she was going to manage. A hint of anger burned through him, the evidence coming from a particularly vicious thrust that tore into the throat of one unlucky Mer whose breath bubbled wetly out of the hole left behind. Once they'd managed to clear the path, he put an arm around Lumira taking her weight so that they could move a little faster. "If I get us back to where I came in... can you find where you did?"
Her braid wrapped around a shoulder, the sword coming down at her side another Mer gurgling to the floor behind her. Second battle of the night, assuming it was the same night - time had lost all meaning. There was more blood than even the wounds they were inflicting would justify, every nick and cut flowing freely, responding to the soft hiss of a single word. She couldn't Call at her full strength, assuming she could tap into it, if she was honest, she was afraid to do harm to Eddie, or his mother. "The forge? I think so...through the infirmary, and then down. You two can get through the water, but I...ohh. Duh." She'd blame the golden strands twisted and tied down her back, if anyone asked.
"I'm not here. I don't have to breathe. Right." She looked nervous even so, remembering a night that seemed very far away, now. Her own skills she knew, even if she didn't understand them - the magics she'd been exposed to here were still so very strange, and the fear of drowning had stuck with her. "Is she...?" Tahlia didn't know how to ask if Lumira was going to be able to change, or for that matter, make it to the surface if the portal wasn't there.
Lumira nodded as Tahlia came to the realization that she had no need for air, not as she was. "Keep that in your mind, if you panic so too will your physical form." The words were tinged with exhaustion but it didn't keep her from offering the girl a smile... did she dare think of her as a girl? It seemed she already had, though something about that felt odd. "I'll be fine... probably better in the water than here. Swimming takes far less effort, there's less need to fight gravity." The explanation came in soft spoken words that held no malice for someone who was so obviously from the land.
Their path to the place where the ceiling had collapsed in was blessedly empty, but sounds traveled to them. There were more of the Mer ahead, the sounds increasing with every twist or turn. Eddie started to slow his pace, checking corners now instead of blundering haphazardly around them into the mother knew what. The place where he'd met up with Tahlia was quite occupied, though there didn't seem to be any soldiers among them. Craftsmen worked frantically to close up the breach that someone had created. "Maybe we can slip by them?" His voice was barely audible for fear of being heard by unintended ears.
"As long as there aren't any squid..." The response was barely audible, and not something she could take the time to explain. Not now. Maybe once they were back, with wine, or something harder. After everyone had had a chance to recover. A swift glance to Eddie for reassurance, and she took a needless breath. The short nap earlier was wearing off, but she had to keep going. Once she had her own body back...flushing slighting, she gave Lumira a grateful smile - her explanation was a great deal less judgemental than Nim's.
"They seem focused - no one saw me before except the sister, and the witch. Maybe they don't care?" True, there little group looked different, but the workmen seemed intently focused, and the only eyes she saw stray from the work were aimed upwards, scanning for the return of the monster. "Let me try...I can scout ahead, see if I can find a path through..." She hadn't let go of the blade, and the twist of her grip said that she would clear the way if necessary.