Illuma was born of two different species and it created a rift between her parents. Growing up as an elegant young woman crossed with a being of mist made knowing what she was supposed to look like difficult.
Recruited as a young adult, she joined the Citadel and pursued xenobiology. Her fascination with alien appearances extended into work with espionage and species assessment. She could make any member of a species look like any other species or race that she wanted.
Olwick had served his time in the Citadel, but when Illuma came to his sister’s rescue, he felt a connection to her, and he certainly owed her. Seeking out the Breethin-Nishan cross in the Citadel was difficult but making a connection beyond a shared origin would tax his skills and her patience.
Illuma kicked her feet and worked on her homework. Her tutor suddenly shot to his feet when her father walked in. He looked as he always did. Handsome and scary.
“Lord Ambrehar, we were not expecting you.” The tutor scrambled to take stock of what his charge was doing.
“I am aware of that. Illuma, close your books and come with me.”
Illuma nodded and hopped down to the floor. Her father took her hand, and they walked through the halls of the manor house that served as his base of operations when he was on Breethin.
“Illuma, you are nearly twenty years old. It is time for you to grow up.” He sighed and squeezed her hand.
“I don’t know how.”
“I know. I am taking you to see your mother. She will tell you what I don’t know.”
Their driver was waiting, and Lord Ambrehar lifted her, settling her into her seat and making sure she fastened in before he took his own spot. “The hollows, please.”
Her father kept her hand as they travelled. She didn’t ask questions. She didn’t have to. If he wanted her to look her age in the physical sense, only another Nishan could show her. Her mother had lost the ability to keep a physical form when Illuma was born, but she could still help out with instructions.
When they had reached the hollows, their vehicle stopped, and her father helped her unbuckle and get out.
The valley filled with mist was her favourite place to visit. She tried to do it at least once a month, but it was hard to convince her tutor and her legs were too short for her riot runner.
She waited for her father and took his hand as they approached her mother. Tendrils of mist curled out and touched her cheek, played with her hair and stroked her father with the same care.
“Good evening, Lumina. Illuma needs your help. She is still wearing a child’s body, but she is two decades old. She needs to look the same age as her mind. There is a future for her, and she cannot take advantage of it if she remains a child.” Her father’s tone had the hitch in it that it always had when he spoke to the woman that he loved.
The tendrils of vapour tugged at Illuma until she walked down into the misty hollow.
Child, your father is worried.
I know, Mother. I would have become a young lady years ago, but he told me that he loved me just the way I was. I guess that has run its course.
A deep chuckle ran through her mind. It isn’t that he loves you any less; he just wants more for you. He wants you to travel, have adventures and fall in love. You cannot do those things here, and you certainly cannot do it in that body.
How do I change?
I will help you with the basics, but you are going to have to select your final form and appearance.
Thank you, Mother.
Their minds meshed, and Illuma gathered energy from the world around her to propel her increase in mass.