Finishing School?

Taryn shuddered remembering the day, the exams had been hard, harder than anything she’d ever faced before, and still she woke up with nightmares. The Craft always has a cost, that was the clear message of the exam, and she had paid for her past uses, paid in full with interest.

After receiving a “passable” grade on her exams, her esteemed mentor Connery had decided she needed to study the Craft abroad before returning to England to work. She had thought perhaps this would be a free visit back home, but Connery had other ideas in mind.

After a long flight she arrived in Satu Mare, Romainia, and took another extended cab ride to the “nearby” Carpathian Mountains, here she was met by a young women and a horse drawn carriage which took her up a mountain road and after a four hour bumpy ride, brought her to the 24th Nome. It was much smaller than the 3rd Nome at Stone Hedge. The main room opened to be about 25 square feet and extended into what appeared to be a large laboratory/library. There was also an ancient wooden stair well that led up to a second floor. Taryn put her bags down and looked to her companion to see what was next, the young women said nothing, she merely nodded that she should stay here and headed up the stairs. A few moment later she heard one of the doors open and was greeted by none other then Eric Strauss, the Archmagus of the 24th Nome.

He was gorgeous, short cropped hair, and well-muscled, his grey eyes could convey a thousand thoughts were present, and yet reveal none. He gracefully descended the stairwell.

“Ms. Parker? I am Eric Strauss, forgive me for not meeting you at the road, but I was kept away on urgent business, I trust Inza treated you well?” he paused for a moment, long enough for her to nod, and then continued “ you will have to forgive her, she has taken a vow of silence in order to power a particularly potent spell come next year’s equinox, until such a time, she will not utter a word” Taryn nodded again, and then silently cursed herself for standing their like a statue and nodding inanely. Eric continued down the stairs and bent down picking up her bags

“Uh…aa…. Ummm… you don’t need to do that…” she finally managed to sputter, she immediately felt silly as his seemed to light up and examine her anew as she spoke.

“It is my pleasure Ms. Parker. Now if you please, I have set aside a room for you upstairs” he began to climb the stairs and she took the first few steps building up the courage to speak once more

“Taryn…. You can call me Taryn… uh… Archmagus” she said turning a brilliant red, why she acting so foolish, she was engaged for crying out loud, to a wonderful man, yet here she was stuttering like a thirteen year old with a crush. He stopped and turned to her.

“We are pretty informal here Taryn; the Nome consists of myself and Inza, and now you, when it is just us you may refer to me as Eric, we really only use titles when we deal with Visitors from other Nomes.” The climbed the stars and passed two rooms, one appeared to be a small kitchen with wooden cabinetry and a small circular table in the back, the other door was closed. Hidden from view of the front door she quickly saw another stairwell rising to a third floor, at the top there was a small landing that was surrounded by four doors, Eric stopped before the first one. “Here is where your studies begin Taryn…” she blushed, the way he said her name… “…What did you learn from your exam?” she paused a moment and then answered quickly, she had always done well with school and rote answers.

“All magic has a cost” she said confidently, he smiled, and so did she.

“that’s correct, it takes some many years to learn that lesson, I’m glad you picked it up so quickly, now… keeping that first lesson in mind, here is your first task at our Nome. Picture your room… what kind of space, furniture and items you will require, once you have it in your mind, you must will that room to be on the other side of this door. You will only get one attempt at this so please think carefully, as you will live in whatever you create, once you have created your room please move in and make yourself as comfortable as possible. We will meet again in the kitchen and speak of your time here.”

She nodded, it was the easiest way to assure she didn’t stutter and she was worried about her task, what would the cost be, and what should she create. Eric nodded his head and departed back down the stairs leaving Taryn to concentrate and wonder what this place would ultimately offer her, and why was she here.

Meeting of the Minds

Duncan sat in the same old room he had years ago, the oak panel walls, the framed degrees, the series of artifacts displayed amongst the books, the low lamps that cask a dim light. The room had a musty scent that clung to the air. How many times had he sat in this very seat, waiting as he was now for the Professor to finish his class? Unconsciously he checked his hat and pulled his jacket up higher, he had taken a risk coming here, although it had been years since he’d been on this campus there was always a risk someone may recognize him, still it had been safer to blend in here then try and meet the Professor elsewhere. He perked up as his keen hearing alerted him to the professor’s approach. His EA was explaining about how rude he was and that he had insisted on waiting within the room. The professor sighed and entered the room moving towards his coat rack and closing the door behind him.

“listen here, I take meetings only by appointment and will not be bullied into changing grades, so if that’s why you are here you can just forget it” Duncan couldn’t help but smile to himself, the first time he had really gotten to know the Professor had been on a similar occasion where he had waited unannounced in his office to argue about a grade.

“Not even for an old friend Professor?” he said removing his hat and looking up. The Professor stood a moment in shock before he took control of himself again and then rushed over for a hug

“Duncan… what are you doing here?” he held him out at arm’s length to look over him “you seem well enough, I thought we agreed to limit our visits to emergencies” Duncan sighed, it was good to see his old mentor again

“I have a problem, and I am not sure how to solve it, I need your advice… do you have time to talk?” the Professor smiled

“For you boy, I can make time, let’s just get the tea on and we can see what we can do”

The two spent the afternoon in the office as Duncan brought the Professor up to speed on Burgathul and all the criminals that would be released, they discussed ethics, law, precedent and more, for a while it felt like old times again, the two of them debating concepts and how different cultures would view them as good or bad. Eventually however things boiled down to the core point.

“you can’t go into that court room, not without risking your identity, friends and family, and your life. It’s a trap and the lawyer knows that, let them go, and make sure when you catch them again your better prepared and ready for it, that all you can do” the Professor finished sipping his tea.

“But 214 criminals get to go free because of me, it doesn’t seem right”

“at least they have been in incarceration and not committing crimes this long, Learn from this, and evolve, that is all we can do”

Duncan nodded hearing the sage advice, he agreed but hated feeling like Burgathul had won, he would be watching him more closely in the future.

Love by the Numbers (part 1)

Misha smiled, he had asked for aid in working out the gyroscopics for his jump algorithms. He hadn’t expected much, the government was good at resources, but there was a very limited pool of talent that he could draw from for aid, he had not expected to be graced with Torricellis Trumpet herself. It was rare that he could talk to someone about the systems the math involved and not have to simply over and over again; it was rarer still when he could talk to a beautiful women. When both opportunities collided, while he would need Seerie to calculate the statistical changes of that happening, but here he was. He had been told that he was to assume the identity of the lead designer on the L.E.G.I.O.N.Legion project. And that he was to maintain the AI cover story while working with her, but aside from that he could be as open as he needed due to the churches close times with the Czech government.

Over the course of the week she had helped him work out his landing issues on the MECH but also had managed to improve his teleport targeting. The two worked together brilliantly, and not only that but she was fluent in Czech. It was as if this were a perfect match. Misha told her about his annoyance with the mob and how the people needed protecting, she agreed and referred to it as hearing a higher calling. By the end of the second week they both knew there was a deeper connection, and were both sad to see their time together come to an end, she was needed back in Italy and his work would not allow him to travel… yet.

To be Continued

Entrance Exams

“Taryn Parker, welcome to the 8th Nome” Connery gave his new apprentice a studied glance. He was as yet unsure if she would work out, and wasn’t impressed by the service pulling another whirl wind on him. All too often recruits were identified from potential assets and then flipped into field agents without a full run of training, add to this one a tiny flicker of potential in the arcane arts and quickly he found himself saddled with an untrained unprepared apprentice with a brand new inflated ego all thanks to the Service.

“Let’s start with some history Parker, since that is your particular passion” he started, the girl quickly flipped open a ratty note book and pen, he had to work to stifle a laugh. “No notes Parker, too dangerous, keep it in your head or not at all” he smiled satisfied as she put away her book.

“Nomes are structures built on a confluence of magical ley lines” he looked up to see the all too familiar blank look from his ‘apprentice’, he’d have to go a bit slower “You have shown a talent for the arcane arts, almost always referred to as the craft or as the Americans simplify it, Magic, the service is going to train you how to control and use the craft to the befit of her majesties commonwealth, still with me Parker?” he watched her nod and then continued “the Craft travels the length and breadth of the multiverse and all worlds within, it travels on what is best thought of as magical highways or power lines that crisscross all around the world, these are called LEY LINES. LEY LINES are always slowly moving, not dissimilar to continental drift or orbital wobble, you may not notice it immediately but over some years you can measure a slight difference… still with me Parker?” again she nodded, “Good… when multiple Ley Lines cross in a confluence, it creates what is called a Place of Power, the more Ley Lines that cross, the more power that runs through it. If powerful wielders of the craft come together and create the right kind of structure they can lock that confluence into place keeping it from moving and maintaining it as a potent place of arcane energy… we refer to such places that we control as NOMES. So once again I welcome you to the 8th Nome Parker” it was hard to lie to himself, he could see the hundreds of question getting ready to erupt from the lips of his ‘apprentice’ and so was quick to cut them off, it was mildly sadistic, but then again his master had done the same to him, and so it seemed fitting.

“Britain is home to three different NOMES, all under the control of our own people her Majesties Secret Service, but here is where you must vigilant Parker, every NOME across the world is headed up by what is referred to as an Arch Magus, he or she sits on a council with the heads of each NOME and works to keep young practitioners of the Craft in line, this group as a whole is referred to as the Arcane Order, and although we work with them, and are in fact members, they have no such loyalty to Her Majesty or Her Common Wealth, which means other NOMEs although friendly to us, are not considered safe houses and their occupants cannot be trusted with our secrets… do you understand?” she nodded and looked about at Stone Hedge, Connery smiled to himself and started walking towards between a set of stones, with a wave of his hand and a mumbled word the air before them shimmered, he paused ushering the lady to pass through first she did and he promptly followed.

He waited for her to take it all in, larger by far on the inside it appeared as if they had shrank to the size of ants, the centre appeared to be open to the air but it was warmer here, and more business-like as many people rushed around, tables and offices were laid out as far as she could see with the sides nearest the stones having multiple floors and elevators, the complex appeared to be the size of a small city, but all contained within Stone Hedge.

“Wow” was all she managed to say, As Connery recalled it was more then he managed to stammer out on his first visit.

“You have a marvellous way of summing things up Parker, now let’s go meet the Arch Magus”

“The Arch Magus?” she replied suddenly worried “I thought you were the Arch Mugus” he barked out a laugh at that

“Yes, and I moon light as the Pope as well you bloody twit, do you really think that the Arch Magus would be training a raw recruit such as yourself?” she looked at her hard for a minute. She began to stammer but her cut her off “No, I am just a humble practitioner of the craft and your CO for MI6, I am no Arch Magus. Now come along, she will want to meet you, and see if you can be inducted into the Arcane Order” he led her across the floor past many cubicles, tables and offices towards a large elevator, the two entered together.

“But what will happen, what if I fail?” he turned placing his hands on her shoulders and looked her deeply in the eyes

“Listen carefully Parker, this is important, NO ONE alive today has failed the entrance test to the Arcane Order, you pass or you die, so don’t fail” the elevator dinged as it arrived at the top floor and opened into a large office room. “Taryn Parker, meet Arch Magus Väinämöinen of the 8th Nome, good luck to you and god bless”

Sept 19 2009
in the news

Sept 19 2009Sept 19 2009

Toronto Star Dec 24 08
Miracle Foils Murder

Toronto Star,

December 24th 2008

In what many thought could have been a Yule Tide Tragedy, a Christmas Miracle has emerged. Ryan Adams was heading home after some last minute Christmas shopping when his car suddenly failed to start, figuring he could double time it to the nearest bus stop and get help from there, the aurora resident quickly found himself lost “I don’t go downtown often, if I hadn’t been trying to find a toy for my son Jimmy I wouldn’t have been in that section of town”

In no time at all, the holiday shopper found himself on the wrong side of Jane and Finch and quickly discovered he was being followed. “the streets were suddenly very empty, I couldn’t find a bus stop, and my cell was dead, I was hoping for a pay phone or a shop where I could call for a ride, but then I noticed a group of guys, they started following and yelling at me” Mr. Adams reports that his pursuers began ‘jeering’ at him and demanded to know if he was aware what neighborhood he was in. “I tried to ignore them at first, but they kept following me, then I thought if I ducked through an ally, maybe I could lose them… I guess that was a bad idea” Adams cut through an ally but quickly found it to be a dead end, his pursuers moved in. “I remember there being at least six of them, two had guns in their pants and another was holding some kind of bat. They started yelling at me, saying I had to pay a tax, and that I had ‘a world of hurt coming’ I was scared I couldn’t move or think, my hands wouldn’t move to give them my wallet, and they seemed to be getting angrier” at this point Adams reports that two individuals drew their weapons and demanded once more that he pay them. Adams unable to move reports begging for his life when things quickly changed.

“It was like an angel descended from above, he was dressed in White and a dark red, with a long white cape. I remember he had a bit of an English accent and he spoke to the men attacking me. ‘That’s enough of this, it’s Christmas, be on your way and they’ll be no other problems’ I couldn’t believe it, he landed right in front of me blocking me from the gang. At this point one of the gangsters yelled at him

‘whose this old coot! Get the F outta here or we’ll make you as holy as you sound preacher!’

I was so scared but the man didn’t move, he just kind of cocked his head to the side like he was disappointed or something

‘lads… that’s enough’ he said again in his English type accent. Then I heard a loud


My knees gave out, I was so scared and I thought for sure the man had been shot and that I was next, but then I heard a lot of cursing again and looked up. The man hadn’t moved and the gang was staring at him with fear in their eyes. So then, the fellow in white steps forward calmly and that snaps the gang out of it, all six of them rush him, some pulling knives… but he just walks through them calmly taking their weapons like you would take s toy from a misbehaving child. And then he calmly tosses the weapons to one side and the gangsters to the other… when he’s done he searches one of the gangsters and takes his phone and passes it to me

‘Call 911’ he says oh so calmly, so I do and the police say they are on their way, the man waits until the sirens sound close before he turns to leave… that’s when I get up the nerve to say something, dumbly all I can think to say is

‘Thanks’ he smiles and nods at me, then my brain catches up and I ask ‘who are you?’

He turns to me and says ‘I am Castellan, Happy Holidays’ I didn’t know what to say, so I kind of nodded and wished him a merry Christmas, and with that he kind of just flew up and away and then the police arrived and took my statement, but I know I’d be dead right now if it weren’t for Castellan, thanks where ever you are”

Police have been asked about the masked vigilante but currently they refuse to comment while their investigation is underway. Anyone who sees a masked man in White and Red is asked to contact the Police immediately. Mr. Adams and his family insist that whoever this man was, he saved their family and caused a Christmas Miracle.

Global Trader Au 15 2008
Mechnical Advance Sweep Europe

Aug 15 2008

V médiích dnes CZEC republika oznámila svůj nejnovější špičkové pokrok v podobě AI známé jako L.E.G.I.O.N. (licencí extra vládní inteligentní Operativní nacionalista). Legie byla naposledy viděn téměř před rokem poté, co robot zakázána trestu smrti na dlouhý čas šéfem mafie, od té doby robot dělal množství vnějších okolností, pokud pravdivost podobných ještě různé formy. Když byl dotázán, veřejné mluvčí Sergej Kritecheck nám řekl, "republika testoval řadu provozních modelů, ale jádro zůstává kódování trvale stejný. LEGIE tu bude zůstat! ". Mnohé z nich jsou zvědaví, co to bude znamenat pro republiku, ale legie prvního řádu jsou činnosti je “Chcete-li odstranit korupci zevnitř a chrání nás od těch, kteří nemají v úmyslu, kdo by nám ublížit”, říká prezident Václav Klaus. Již tento robot byl zaneprázdněn, v průběhu posledních tří měsíců mu vyklidil několik mafiánských provozovaných drogových doupat, a byl schopen sledovat peníze z těchto operací do několika pochybných úředníků ve vládě. Prezident Klaus byl rychle odstranit tyto osoby od síly. Kladení druhé o jejich stanoviska této strojní divu cizinců věcí tajemník Hillary Clinton měl toto říkat "Nechápu, jak je to produktivní, jak to pomůže zemi, která vyžaduje podporu v krmení své lidi, to není čas začít další závod ve zbrojení ", když se zeptal, jestli Amerika bude rozvíjet vlastní robot Clinton odmítl komentář.

Protože teď jste to přátelé Mechanická hrozba nebo hrdina z chladných zapomenutých lidí? Pouze čas ukáže, ale teď všechny oči a kamery jsou na vás LEGIE!

The Global Trader
World News Now

October 2008

In the news South Malia has once again pleased to the world for aid as once more war and famine break out across the land. due to the volatile politics in the area the UN has once more declined immoderate action, being vetoed by the US. This morning we received word from Vatican city

non può più uomini di fede, un passo indietro e lasciare gli uomini malvagi per distruggere le vite degli innocenti. Essa non è semplicemente abbastanza per essere buoni, bisogna alzarsi in piedi contro le grinfie del diavolo, e disabilitare da lui ferire gli altri. Si per questo che ho deciso di inviare Gods Will a sud Malia, la loro missione di portare la violenza alla fine, e proteggere le persone innocenti lì, ma sono anche per rendere più sicuro per i nostri missionari e operatori umanitari di iniziare il loro lavoro troppo importante. La Chiesa cattolica non si siederà più idolo!

or as translated into English

no longer can men of faith stand back and allow evil men to destroy the lives of the innocent. It is not merely enough to be good, one must stand up against the clutches of the devil, and disallow him from hurting others. It is because of this that I have decided to send Gods Will to South Malia, their mission will to bring the violence to an end, and protect the innocent people there, they are also to make it safe for our missionaries and aid workers to begin their too important work. The Catholic Church will not sit idol any longer!

Obviously these are powerful words from the Pope and shows a new foreign affairs agenda never before seen from the church. we will be following this story as it continues to unfold.

Story by Belinda Carlisle


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