[Vee? Are you okay? I could feel our connection weakening, what happened? Should I stop watching the director and come to you?]
‘No there’s no need, I think I went through another awakening…’
[Another awakening? How peculiar… alright I’ll stay here, do call for me if anything happens]
“I’m alright, I think it’s because I haven’t been eating and drinking well lately… I should be alright after a moment's rest” I said trying to get the crowd that had formed away from me.
“What are all you staring at? Get lost, she needs to rest.” Rein spoke out which surprised both Reuben and I.
“Vee do you think you need a doctor to take a look at you?” ‘What kind of adult asks a kid if they need a doctor.’ I thought while trying to form a warm smile to get Miss Dandy away from me as she gave off a very strange aura.
“No Miss Dandy, I’ll be fine thank you.” As if she was displeased with my answer her eyes felt hollow as she simply walked away from me.
“What’s her problem?”
“Oh, you felt that too Rein? That’s new”
“Just how clueless do you think I am? You do know I’m older than you right?”
“Oh please you’re only older by 20 minutes, if anything you probably pushed me out of the way just so you could come out and brag about how you're older.”
“You two are always arguing about something huh, anyway I think we should go to the library after breakfast since you said it’s our free time anyway,” I said while I pointed towards Reuben.
“Eh-hem Yh sure but what do we need to go to the library for? I’m probably the only one who knows their way around the library here.”
“We need to plan an escape route and where to take all the other children. It would be good if we could figure out who they are so we can have them returned to their homes if possible.”
“We also need to see if we can find the medallion, you know we kind of need that to get out of the forest as a whole.” Said Rein while we started getting up and making our way towards the library.
“My Chimera is looking in the director’s office and her bed chambers for the medallion but we shouldn’t touch it until we're ready to leave.” I mindlessly opened the door to what I expected to be a quiet small library and was slapped in the face with heavy layers of dust bursting through the freshly opened door.
‘Cough’ ‘Cough’ ‘Cough’ we choked up and I could see Rein and Reuben tearing up.
“Air purification” I chanted through my coughs while creating a swish-and-flick motion with my right index finger.
A strong breeze whisked past us and into the room brushing all the thick layers of dust away.
“I forgot to mention the library is kind of messy.”
“Kind of? Kind of? Reuben that room has to be considered hazardous. How the hell did you walk around in here?” I stuck my head in and examined the space, the room was still very dirty with cobwebs and dirt.
“It wasn’t this bad the last time I came here, it’s not maintained since no one here can really read other than Miss Dandy and the director.”
“Wait, the other teachers can’t read?” I turned around and asked while examining that the room had no windows but a leakage in the ceiling by the door made the room smell even more musty than it already would be without it.
“Yh they can’t read” Reuben said while looking around to try and re-familiarise himself.
“Well, we’re supposed to call them teachers right? What exactly do they teach?” I asked as we continued walking further into the library.
“That’s the thing, they don’t teach anything. It would be more accurate to call them maids or nannies but the other kids don’t know what that is.”
“How are you two able to read if they don’t teach anything?”
“We just knew how to read and we tried to teach each other more, the best we could.”
“By we he really just means himself, I know a few words but reading just gives me a massive headache so I’d rather not.” Rein retorted as he picked up a random book that was set on a small table in the middle of the room.
“Okay Rein close the doors, I’ll try to clean up with magic as much as I can so we can at least sit down in here.”
“Hey, why not teach us how to use magic too? It would become useful right?” Rein spoke out as he kicked the door hard enough to shut but light enough to not make a loud sound.
“That is true, alright then try copying me. You push the mana to the tip of your fingers, an index finger is best for casting magic, and do a double loop while chanting decontamination. I’ve cancelled mine so you two should give it a go.” I demonstrated.
“Gather mana to the tips of your index finger…” Both Rein and Reuben created a double loop with their index finger.
“Decontamination” they chanted together, red flames engulfed the whole library perhaps because the chanted spell wasn’t one of destruction, the flames were warm enough to burn the cobwebs and dirt but it didn’t burn when it grazed past my skin.
“Woah… that’s so awesome, look Reuben we’re using magic.” We both turned around to look at Reuben from the lack of response and he was hunched over slightly clutching his chest.
“Reuben? What’s wrong?” both me and Rein asked worried while walking over towards him.
“My heart felt like it was, umm, leaking? I don’t know how to describe it but it felt like something was leaking out from my heart.”
This was a symptom that a lot of young mages faced upon their awakening, young mages all needed guidance from a mage with a fully formed mana core, not to mention that low-level mages are not able to locate a mana core since it is constantly moving. This is why most poor children who didn’t have the financial means to hire a mid-level mage, almost always died if they awakened their magic abilities. Apart from the lucky few who held out with brute force, mana is both a curse and blessing to the poor.
“Here, your mana needs guidance. I can help.” I let my mana flow out of my palms instead of the tips of my finger as this is what the man who guided me had done, I redirected the mana flowing towards Reuben's heart to flow around his body and into his mana core.
“Reuben, do you feel the flow? Try replicating this with your own mana; it'll make you feel more relieved.” I said while I pointed to where his core was currently located in his lower abdomen.
“Ughh, it feels weird like my heart is soggy but I feel better now.” I turned my head around to Rein.
“How about you Rein? Does your heart hurt?”
“No, I think I already have a fully formed mana core, I don’t understand this isn’t the first time Reuben has used his mana.”
“If Reuben only did what he showed me last time then he technically didn’t use his mana fully until today. Mana is only considered used once it leaves your body so if all Reuben did was have it run around in his own body he wouldn’t have awakened.”
“Didn’t he use it to check your heartbeat last night? Is that not considered leaving his body?” Rein asked while seemingly thinking back to all the times his twin had used his mana.
“He flowed it into my body already has a fully formed mana core which is more powerful than his, so it probably consumed his mana thus stabilising it and preventing an awakening. He’ll be fine now. I can stabilise his core if it ever goes out of control again but I doubt it will.”
“I didn’t realise my magic could be dangerous to myself…” said Reuben while looking down at his own hands.
“You shouldn’t use your mana for now, at least not until your core is stabilised and your mana is able to instinctively flow to your core and not your heart. Just to be safe Rein I’ll have a look at your core.” I said while letting mana flow out of my palms and into Rein.
His mana core had a dull red colour, the more clear a mana core was the stronger their abilities are, a clear core was harder to find and harder to detect. There has only ever been one human being who achieved a clear core that being the first emperor, the founder of the Faulner Empire who had the ability to wield both mana in the purest form and divine power.
“Your core is fine, oh it’s a dark red colour if you keep practising your magic the core will get lighter and lighter,” I said while making my mana dissipate.
“What colour are mine?” asked Reuben, still looking down at his hands.
“Yours is lighter than Reins but it’s still red, I believe the core has the same colour as whatever element is your main attribute. Your family has a tendency to be ummm how should I put this? Pyromaniacs I guess.”
“Pyr…Pro what?” asked Rein looking confused.
“A Pyromaniac is someone who has an obsessive desire to set fire to things right?” asked Reuben. Finally taking his eyes off his hands and the glint returned in his eyes.
“Yes, almost all your ancestors have wielded fire and of course set fire to many a thing when they were younger,” I answered thinking back to how Rein set fire to everything in the past before I caught up to him and…
“Hey! Snap out of it, you're making that weird face again,” Rein said sharply which brought me back to my new reality.
“Rein! Be a bit more gentle, are you okay?”
“Yh… yh I was just… it’s nothing, before we come up with an escape plan, I want to show you where you guys are from. Reuben, can you tell me where the atlas is and do you know if this library has a book on noble history?”
“Yes, the atlas is the book Rein was playing with when we first came in and the book of noble history is on the second row in the geology section.”
“Thanks, that would take ages to find if you hadn’t already explored this place.” to that Reuben simply nodded and I went over to the geology section to find the book.