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   Chapter 104 No.104

The Book of Deacon By Joseph R. Lallo Characters: 5618

Updated: 2018-01-20 12:02

"I understand you and Lain have started your training. I am sorry I missed it. Have you shown the same skill in battle as you have in magic?" he asked.

"Not nearly, " Myranda answered. "You called him Lain, as did Solomon. I thought that was just a title."

"It is. In the absence of a real name, it seems only fitting to refer to him by the title he earned, " he said.

"I suppose I may as well do so, " Myranda said.

"How is your head? Is the magic still taking its toll as severely?" he asked.

"I've still got most of my wits about me, " she said.

"Splendid. Your endurance is improving. You will need that for the final test, " he said.

"What is the final test?" she asked.

"Well, you see--" he began.

"Wait, I haven't eaten yet. Tell me on the way, " she said.

As the trio continued on, they spoke.

"When any of our Masters are satisfied that you have learned enough, they will administer a test to be sure of your understanding. Each comes in two parts. The first is an endurance trial that will assure that you have the strength to perform the spells that are expected of a Master. The second is the dexterity trial that will assure you have the skill of mind to perform the most complex of spells. Both take place in the same day, " he explained.

"Wait. You mean to tell me that the complex test will be immediately following the taxing one?" Myranda said.

"Indeed. I think you will agree that is a fine method for determining whether one ought to be considered a Master, " he said.

They spoke while each finished their meal. When they were through, Deacon remarked that Myranda seemed a bit more physically weary today than she had in t

ould now cast spells while still remaining aware of her surroundings. She did so now, gathering her mind while looking nervously about at the onlookers. Solomon lowered a large, twisted stone into a clay stand with a hole in it. Below it was another block of clay with a hole in the top, aligned with one in the stand.

"You will focus as hot a flame as you can manage onto this piece of ore for as long as it takes to melt it entirely into the mold below, " he said.

No more instructions followed. Myranda took a deep breath and began to conjure heat. She was already beginning to tire before the metal had even begun to glow. She found that she needed to double her efforts and double them again before the stone began to soften. The draw on her power, even after all of the improvement she'd had, was unbearable. She could feel the heat she was generating on her face despite the fact that she was a fair distance from the ore. Crackles and snaps emanated from the stone as it began to lose its form. By the time the first fat orange drop of molten metal flowed into the mold, she could no longer focus her eyes.

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