Finding James

The night finished up with everyone attempting their overcharge homework. Well, almost everyone. A couple of the boys go down to Lost and Found to learn the Locate spell Dalish had picked up, but I just go to bed so I can get up early the next morning to look for Daffodils around campus.

Classes, so exciting on the first day, have somehow become routine in just a few days. Everyone but me gets to practice taking control of Mana in Fundaments class while I take notes to see how to distract a Wizard trying to do so. Math is something I can at least learn and understand.

At lunch, we discuss James some more and decide to go looking for Daffodils in the forest. Dalish finds a dead one before we have to hurry back for afternoon classes. History continues to be strange, and I just keep my head down. In P.E. we take a break from the Game, and do the obstacle course and then run laps. I actually come in 2nd of our class at 13 minutes 30 seconds – only Klyce beats me, and not by much.

We’ve got some time before dinner, so the guys start overcharging to cast Locate Object on the notebook Dalish gave to James. They fall unconscious a lot, but keep at it, heading out to the Fountain whenever they wake up. Seems Remy and Dalish can’t cast this type of spell. But Gerhardt and Nat lead us out into the courtyard and say it’s down below us. So, Nat runs back to his room for a shovel and we start digging until the Serviers show up and scold us for digging up the courtyard.

Nat manages to get them talking. They say it smells of Daffodils, but it goes deep, too deep for boys and girls. (Why are they SO Creepy???) They mention the Undercroft and Catacombs are off-limits to underclassmen. And then get stuck on that and won’t tell us more.

So we head off to the library to look for maps and histories of this place. The only maps we find don’t have the underground areas, and the only history we find was that this used to be tenements. Nat tries an overcharge on other missing items, and it still points to the same spot. So we start searching around and MaryBeth and I find a secret door in the Library that goes downstairs.

We all head down together. Nat and Dalish hear Serviers whispering ahead. They’re talking about James, they’ve actually been sent to find him. (Oh, Good, can we go now? No? Alright.) They’re coming our way so we have to hide. Somehow they don’t see us and we keep going.

There is tapping on the pipes, so MaryBeth taps back (hoping it’s James?). I start hearing voices talking about fun. Then mist creatures jump out and attack us. I shout at them that this is Not Fun, but they don’t listen. We disperse two and one runs, but the last to disperse calls for help. So we run, and Nat tries another Locate Object to guide us. More mist monsters come running after us, so we hide again. (MaryBeth is really good at illusions.) Two stay to investigate the area we’re hiding in, so we have to smash them and dive down a small tunnel Nat found.

Eventually we get to the end of the tunnel, and I hear something ahead. He’s talking about blood and shiny things and being trapped. When we finally make it out of the tunnel, we find a room full of huge piles of stuff. This guy must have been stealing stuff for a Very Long Time. We sneak forward together, and find James in the center of a Ritual Circle with a small purple-grey, slimy creature.

We attack. I push James out of the circle while Nat tries to mess up the symbols. The weird creature disappears. MaryBeth and I try to take care of James while everyone else pairs off to search the piles for the creature or another way out so we don’t have to go back through the mist monsters. There’s a lot of sticky goo and slippery spots around the room and the slimy creature keeps popping out of the piles and attacking us. Until Klyce manages to grab him and they all bombard him with spells. He melts away and the Ritual Circle fades.

What Was That? What are we doing? We’re just kids, why are we fighting strange monsters in the sewers? This is not at All what I thought magic school would be like! Did we just Kill something??? Lots of somethings?? We’re killing things now??? What IS this Place? And why am I now an even bigger freak because I could understand them all? How do I understand them??

Breathe, Tristia, we still have to get out of here.