The Warmth of the Hearth

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Vengeance & Other Petty Things

“Would that be all?” A gaunt middle-aged woman asks Elizabeth, pointing to the bag of ingredients she carried in her hand.

Elizabeth nods, handing over the three gold coins to the shopkeeper, a hefty price for school supplies. Her eyes scan the shop, its wooden walls layered with tons of old banners saying “THE BEST ALCHEMY INGREDIENTS IN TOWN!” The woman hands her the change and she promptly makes her way back to the manor.

A kid bumps into her, a small boy running away from his mother. They seem to be someone new to the community, Elizabeth not recognizing their faces. “Oh, sowee! Mwama and I are pweying hide and seek!” The boy slurs in his apology, which Elizabeth found cute. She pats his head and replies, smiling. “Just be careful from now on, you wouldn’t want your mother worrying.”

The boy nods, running back to his mother. Elizabeth notices the mother’s uncomfortable stare, as if she was making her uneasy. This was understandable however, since nobles always treated Feebles as nothing more than slaves, an unpleasant thought. Elizabeth watches them scurry away and her eyes turn to look around her surroundings. So much has changed, and a part of her finds it hard to believe that all of this could be made possible in such a short amount of time. Something’s off.

Loft stands on the balcony of her room overlooking the capital, the scenery magnificent to her eyes. The lines of houses that were once found in Murkville flash in her mind and she can’t help but compare it to this. Now, everything was fine. Ezicion was now one, albeit there being problems here and there.

“Thora, someone wants to see you.” Kein speaks, his voice now whole. He was wearing a blue coat which suited him perfectly. Thora smiles at the sight of Kein, his pale skin glowing in the light. “Who is it?”

As if on cue, Aden Fir appears from behind Kein, bowing in the presence of Loft. “Madame Loft, forgive my intrusion.”

Thora does not react, simply ordering him to be at ease. “I am no Royal, Aden. Speak.”

Aden fidgets with his fingers, a sweat trickling down his eyebrow. “It has something to do with the heads of the houses madame.” He pauses, thinking hard about what words to use next. “They grow restless, asking whether or not the crown still holds meaning. They say ‘Peace has been achieved, what about the deal that has been agreed upon?’”.

Aden is in fact, talking about the main reason why most of the houses agreed to take part in the uprising. Thora knew how these nobles work; they would not have risked it when there was nothing in it for them. There was the exemption of Eleanor and Aden, both who really were eager to bring the matter of injustice to light. “I have said it before, I have given all of you free reign over your respective territories. All of you requested power, and it is power and influence that I have given to each of you.”

“I appreciate what you have done for my House and all of Ezicion Madame Loft, and I agree that you have done more than you have promised us.” Aden pauses, his worry not starting to show. “However, it seems that they are fighting for who they think is worthy enough to take over the crown Madame Loft, seeing as you are not interested.”

Thora looks at Aden and it was evident that he was worried about Thora. He was a good man who wished for nothing but what was best for The Summer Domain. It was true that Thora had no interest in politics and when it comes to taking the crown, she really had no plans of doing so. However, someone taking full control of Ezicion will become hard to control, for the crown of Ezicion holds a power that no one else will be able to wield. A legend that she knows to be true. “Very well, we shall discuss it when ample time comes. For now, I ask that all of you wait.” Aden nods, excusing himself from the room.

Kein escorts Aden out, smiling the way Thora taught him to smile. Aden smiles back, which makes Kein happy. He closes the door, his grin not leaving his face as he faces Thora. “Thora, Aden does not fear me! Did you see that? I did not sense fear!”

Kein does his own version of celebrating, which consisted of muttering and excessive smiling. Adorable. Thora approaches Kein, giving him a kiss on the cheek. “They have nothing to fear about you love, you are absolutely wonderful.” She clicks the lock to the room and pushes Kein on the bed.

Kein looks at her confused. He does not have time to ponder on the sudden act however, when Thora kisses him. Kein answers her lips, a warmth he has fallen in love with. “I love you.” Thora whispers, before continuing to pursue her endeavor. A day of just them being in love, a comfort they couldn’t find anywhere else.

Eron Fir learns about the different forms of Binding Magic, searching for a way to combat The Ripper. A demon, he has no place in this world. His eyes scan each page of a memento written by a long forgotten female mage, a faded crest of House Blaise engraved on the cover. “I will make sure your death isn’t forgotten, Kayden Blaise.” He mutters under his breath.

Banishment, Rooting, Transfiguration, Petrifying, and other forms of Binding magic are etched on each page, with pointers on how they work and what you can do to use them effectively. Binding Magic is a branch of Agni that was developed by an unknown member of House Blaise. It was said that he/she was a genius, gifted in the manipulation of manna. Unlike most of the magic done by Agni users, Binding Magic uses the light of the flame of Agni, rendering the power of darkness useless.

There! The Chains of Agni, a powerful form of Binding Magic that will render anyone unable to go against your will. If that demon were to be in Eron’s command, he could obliterate those who were the cause of his hero’s death. He marks the page and takes not of what he needs. “An Agni mage…” Eron mutters, arriving at a dead end. He was a Terra user, unable to wield the flames House Blaise are capable of. Who would be willing to help me?

Carson sits on the cliff, his feet dangling in the air. A chill runs down his back, as if someone was talking about him. He shrugs it off, continuing to scan the horizon. What should I do now father?

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