"Still can't believe you put this karking thing in your chest," she muttered, half to herself, half to him. Small hands moved to rest lightly on his chest. "Well, I can, but...."
And then she trailed off, because she couldn't concentrate both places at once.
Freedom from Gideon had opened up a dark sea of power within Irajah. It had always been there, beneath the surface, but like a stone cap finally removed, she could dip her hands into it without repercussions. Almost two years of the constant escalation of hostilities between her and the virus had ultimately strengthened her in the Force, even if it had broken down her old body. But now, unrestrained, unfettered? She didn't know just how deep these waters went yet, how far she could dive. The exploration of that was an ever widening joy, seeking the sea bottom that could barely even be dreamed about from the surface. Each time she went deeper, discovered new coves and reefs within herself. Slow at first, but bolder each time as she found that the only monster lurking in these waters was herself.
As if holding open a book on the side, single finger pressing the spine open, she kept a touch on Carach's image of the Heart. This was just an extension of years of training that had nothing to do with the Force. The intricacies of a human body were well known to her hands, and therefore mind, and it was not difficult to extend the mentalism somewhere beyond thoughts and memories. She didn't have a word for what she was doing- instinctive, it made sense to her on an intrinsic level to dip into his body and see what was happening.
She timed it between the waves of pain. A baseline was necessary- seeing only what was causing the pain without the benefit of what it looked like without meant it would be easier to miss something. The crystalline lattice settled in his chest was quiet, blood still running from the force of the last beat- with his understanding at her finger tips, she could piece together the practical parts, it not the why then at least the how. Sith sorcery and alchemy at its finest, she mused to herself. The force of it, rather than a physical pumping mechanism, kept the blood moving between beats, too long between for the actual physical press of muscle but perfectly sufficient for the Force.
Not that long ago, she would have dismissed such a thing as impossible. I deal in science, not magic, the real and tangible, she'd said once, dismissive of the ancient child's painting of a sith poison when compared to the elegance of a manufactured virus. She still thought poorly of it, but now she knew better than to dismiss it. Drawing around it at all angles, the Heart at rest matched what Carach's image of it offered.
Then it pulsed.
And Irajah was almost swept away in a tide of panicked terror.
When someone drowns, they will grasp onto anything. Anyone. Without regard for anything beyond the need to reach the surface. A drowning creature is reliable in its unreliability, in it's hunger for air as lungs fight and brain starves. As black stars explode from all sides. Even a person, decent to their very core, is taken over by blind panic and will grab anything that may feed dying lungs. A friend, a lover, a child, it doesn't matter, they will grasp and hold and plunge them beneath the waves in an attempt to reach the air at the surface. When someone drowns, survival over comes every other design, no matter how good the person. It is not personal, it is animalistic and raw.
It was desperate.
Clawed hands that didn't exist pulled, raking and frantic in their attempt to use her presence there as a ladder of their own salvation. Screaming, whimpering, wide eyed and dangerous in their desperation, they all cried out the same thing.
Let us out. Get us away from her.
Irajah, however, had already had quite enough of hungry spirits.
It wasn't to say that she could simply shed them. Or that it wasn't difficult and painful. But there was nothing that could drown her here. They were strong in their terror, but she was firm in her resolve and grasped at the thread, that finger laid on page, between herself and Carach and rode the wave of the pain.
It was the pain that gave her the solution. The terror of the spirits that occupied his heart, that she could do nothing about. But the pain, the clawing, that she knew all too well.
Swimming back up as the wave ebbed, her eyes opened and she breathed in sharply, only realizing then that she had been physically holding her breath during that internal wave. She'd have to be conscious of that- work on the connection if she could. But for now, hazel gaze tracked up to Carach's face.
"And that is why putting a thousand sith spirits in a crystal and making them do the job of your heart is a bad idea. Eventually some bigger and badder motherkarker is going to come along and scare them chitless."
The expression on her face softened slightly, but the frown didn't dissipate.
"I have an idea for a stop-gap, until I can study this thing more..... maybe talk to Cerbera. I can show you how to do it.... It's not for things like this, but I think it could work."