First off, the matter of business is: how went the torture of the face? Answer: not well. Second time now I started crying, this time about fifteen minutes, maybe twenty minutes in. It wasn’t good, and after that I simply couldn’t relax, and I did a quick laser session, which burned off a few of the remaining dark hairs. I discussed the situation with the women who does my treatment, and we sort of figured out that (a) I’ve been beating up the same section of my face for three weeks now, and it’s probably causing a lot of the pain, and (b) I’m not getting the numbing cream on right, and that means nothing but pain. So we’re going to try something different next week, and see how that works.
The real burning question–see what I did there?–is, “Did you write?” Like a good aircraft, I did seven hundred and thirty-seven words, and inched to within fifty thousand before the events of the day caught up to me and I finally went to bed tired as all hell.
Considering how I felt like night, I considered the output to be something of a victory, because I felt ill by the time I returned from the face zapping place. I really needed to write, even if it wasn’t easy getting the words down. I really need to get through this chapter and onto the next, even though I know on of the scenes in the next chapter will probably raise some hairs on the backs of some people’s necks. And that’s good, because writing is suppose to be about pulling out the emotions. Maybe I could stop putting mine out there all the time.
In our last post Jessica wanted to say something to her students. Now, after the writer got zapped, she gets her chance.
(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)
Jessica stepped behind Kerry. “This is our newest student: Kerry Malibey, a B Level from Cernunnos.” She watched the exchanges between the other four students, noticing Annie catching her own share of glances. “I know you find that a bit surprising, as the soonest any of you were invited in was at the end of your B Levels or the start of your C Levels, but I have my reasons for inviting Kerry and his girlfriend Annie—” She watched a couple of sets of eyes light up at the mention of Annie an Kerry’s relationship, though one of them wasn’t Fekitoa’s. “—into this class. Allow me to explain . . .
Well, of course a kid from their coven isn’t going to be surprised to hear about these two: by now we’ve figured out that Annie and Kerry are kinda minor celebrities in their own tower. It’s also interesting to hear Jessica call Annie a girlfriend, because she’s seemed to avoid mentioning the relationship at all, save to give one or the other a bit of crap in class. The more we get into the year, the more it seems like the staff just accepts that there’s more here than hand holding and a lot of snogging.
What does Jessica have to say?
“Kerry is one of the best at transformation crafting I’ve seen, as is Annie—please, join us.” Jessica motioned the girl—who had done as much as possible not to look as if she was an official member of the class—to stand with them. “This is the reason I forwarded the invitation. Now, Annie won’t be in class most of the time: she gave good reasons for not accepting the invitation, and after giving the headmistress and me her reasons, we both agreed with them.” Jessica smiled at the girl. “She’s sort of auditing the class this evening, and while she’ll like not come to many, she’s welcome to join us any time.
“Kerry will stay with us for this year, and, I hope, for more to come. Because he needs to catch up to the rest of us, I’ll spend extra time with him now and then.” She put on her best smile. “Don’t take this as a sign that I’m trying to make him fit in: I assure you, he’ll be right along side you in no time.”
Jessica took a step back from the group, who turned to face her. “Dig out your notes on Invisibility: we’re going to start in on that again, since a few of you were just getting the hang of it at at the end of last year. While you’re reviewing those, I’m going to have a word with Annie and Kerry over in the corner.”
Oh, now it’s Invisibility: the real thing, not just light bending. Yeah, just what you need to teach to these two–well, to Kerry, and then he’ll run off and teach Annie. Speaking of which . . .
Once they were away from the rest of the group Jessica threw up a privacy spell so they wouldn’t be overheard. She sat against the edge of a table before addressing Annie. “I hope you didn’t think I was putting you on the spot—”
“Not at all, Jessica.” Annie had half-expected Jessica to try and convince her to join the class full-time, and was surprised when she didn’t. “Thank you for not pressuring me to reconsider.”
“Oh, I considered asking you to do just that, but after discussions with Erywin and Helena, I better understand your position.” She nodded in Kerry’s direction. “As you said, in order to be good sorceresses, you have to be able to teach what you know—”
“And this is something that Kerry can certainly learn to teach.” Annie grinned at him. “Isn’t that right, love?”
“As rain.” Kerry hadn’t minded being put on display in front of the other, older students, but something struck him as odd. “You didn’t mention anything about me being a Mimic.”
“I didn’t because I don’t want that to get out—” Jessica shrugged. “At least not yet. Once you’ve been in class a while, and you’ve learned to developed your Transformational Art, people will likely figure it out on their own.” She shifted position to make herself more comfortable. “When it comes to Gifts we’ve found that the knowledge of who has them usually finds its way to the rest of the students in due time—making announcements become unnecessary.”
Jessica moved to a nearby chair, and invited Annie and Kerry to join her. “I want to bring up one thing, Kerry—something that wasn’t actually covered last year because, well, there wasn’t a need. But now that you’re about to take the leap into some major transformation magic, it’s time to make you aware of lay ahead.” She slowly crossed her legs, letting the wonder of what she would say next grow. “It’s no secret that people are afraid of sorcery, and with good reason—” She eyed Annie for a few seconds. “But you both already have first hand knowledge of that reason, so there’s no need to tell you something you already know. But have you ever noticed how skittish people get around witches who are the mistresses and masters of transformation magic?”
Yes, Jessica, we have, but what do you mean? Oh, you’re not telling us until tomorrow? Well, that’s not very nice!
The one thing to get from this is the public shout outs Jessica gave to both kids. Now is the time when they are being touted, and not only is it going to show with people in their own level, it’s gonna show up with others. Jessica isn’t one to hand out complements, but this is an advanced class, and we’ve seen those are a whole different mixture around this place. One of the reasons Kerry likes it at school is that it’s the only place where he’s recognized for his skills, and not treated like a “strange kid.” And Jessica is giving him and Annie high praise–something she’s not known for doing.
Tomorrow we’ll find out for sure what Jessica’s going to say–and maybe even get into the next scene as well.