Opening

  The Call Balshown and Makish are quiet as we prepare for our journey to the city. Like me, they are full of their own thoughts. We are outsiders, powerful energy masters full of a hunger to shape the future. Our hunger and strength set us apart from other Jiku, even the guilds, and bind us together. Sometimes they treat me as a friend, and sometimes they treat me as a child. Each of them is possessive and protective of me, and wary of the other. My thoughts are broken by the urgency of the moment. Now is a good time to fly. Energy weavers harness the forces that stream through the web. They conquer gravity and glide through the sky. The web grows brighter at midday, when the strength of the great web is amplified by the sunlight. At dawn, the sun shouts its arrival to the web, like…

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The Necklace and the Wizard

  Hiding from the Energy Web Keela and I land on a high hill, its sides covered in blue and yellow wildflowers. A few small houses cover the top of the hill, surrounded by a high wall. The houses and the wall are decorated with the royal symbol, in dark blue and gold. “This is the royal camp,” she says. “Camp?” She sighs. “That’s what it’s always been called.” “Our ancestors came to this area as an army, after a war, and the surviving leaders camped here.” “In many ways we are still an army.” There are guards everywhere. Heavily armed. I scan their weapons with energy eyes. I can’t tell exactly, but the weapons seem to generate a powerful energy stream. There’s nothing like them among the guild masters or the city. “Princess,” says one of the guards,”you can’t bring outsiders here, especially wizards.” “It violates the security protocols.”…

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