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The Two Academies

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cyso:
Yes, but I don't know that. Last I saw him, Zack stumbled out of the great hall looking and feeling very hot, so I think he might have had a heat stroke.

TheWanderingShadow:
   John listened to the dean with increasing excitement. He had heard rumors that there was going to be a boarding student coming from Traten. Most of the students, including John, had never met a Tratenite before, and everyone was excited. They fidgeted around while the dean made the mundane anouncements. Finally, the dean cleared his throat and said, “Now one more thing of business before we go off to bed. We have generously offered a Tratenite named Zack Arcon a place as a transfer student at our school. Now I want everyone to treat him nicely and help him if he needs anything, we need to make a good impression if we want to increase ties with Traten. He is waiting outside of the halls now.” The hall doors opened slowly, and there stood a medium-height, platinum blond haired, blue eyed figure smiling with an arrogant smile. The dean said, “Welcome Mr. Arcon, I hope you have a good time at Psy Academy. Do you have anything to say to everyone before we go off to bed?”
Zack laughed and stated, “It is hot in Cera Bella.”
“Well everyone, with everything said and done, you can go off to bed.”
John wasn’t sure if he liked Zack or not. Well, I guess I’ll just have to wait and see, he thought. He wouldn’t have to wait long. Everyone was talking about Zack and staring at him as he passed. John smiled inwardly. This is going to be an interesting year, he thought.


   John awoke in his room, dim light filtering through the tiny hole in the wall that was his window. He rubbed the sleep from his eyes, and went to wash his face. As he was filling the basin, he heard Rashnev calling: “The Shadow! Come here!”
John groaned inwardly. Ugh, what is it this time? he thought. More insults? More nagging? “Stand up straight, you look like a hunchback..” “You look filthy, go wash yourself.” “Get your greedy little eyes off the pantry, and focus on training.”Rashnev could go on and on. He always finds something wrong with me, John grumbled. If only I—
“John.” Said Rashnev, interrupting John’s mental rant. “I said, come here.” John froze. Rashnev only used his real name when there was a job to do . . .
John dropped the washbasin and marched straight to Rashnev’s room. He found him sitting in his chair, holding a scroll in his hand. As John entered the room, Rashnev tossed the scroll at him. “Congratulations, The Shadow, you’ve been accepted into the Psy Academy.”
John’s face went pale. “Wh—what?! No! You can’t—“
Rashnev silenced him with a wave of his hands. “Calm down. You will not be going there to learn, not that those second-rate teachers would be able to teach you anything I haven’t. And you’re certainly not going to become a Shadowling general. Quite the opposite, in fact. This is the biggest assasination job we’ve had since the past year, and you’ll be happy to know that the target is a Shadowling.”
Some color began to return to John’s face. He regained his composure and said, “Alright, who’s the target?”
“The dean of Psy Academy.” John cried out in outrage again, and Rashnev had to grab him and hold him down until he stopped. After calming down, John asked, “Why can’t you send one of the older members?”
“This is a long-term job. An adult that isn’t a teacher would be much too conspicuous at the academy. I need someone young to can masquerade as a student. Since you are the most experienced assasin in the organization who fits within the age requirements, you’re the one to take the mission.” declared Rashnev. “No objections.” he added, as John opened his mouth to voice one. “We are getting an obscene amount of gold for this job, so it is of the absolute highest priority.”
 “Obscene amount, huh?” John repeated. “What’s my cut?”
Rashnev raised an eyebrow. “You’ve regained your business-mindedness, I see.” He paused for a moment. “Your cut is ten thousand gold. And that’s only ten percent of it.”
John’s lips went dry. “One hundred thousand? Who would be so desperate?”
“They’ve declined to identify themselves, but I assume that they’re important Cera Bella residents who want their precious Academy back. Who could blame them? The Academy is the perfect stronghold against any future Shadowling attacks. And they probably don’t want the Shadowlings training more generals like the famous redhead that took the Academy down in the first place. But I digress. All we really need to know is that they want to kill someone, and they’re paying us to do it.”
John remembered the mission’s requirements. “But how? How can I get into the Academy? It’s literally a castle!”
Rashnev’s constant expression of annoyance deepened slightly. “As I already told you, you’re going under the guise of a student. When you’re there, you’ll have to attract attention to yourself—against your instincts, I know. Be a braggart, be a star student, be whatever gets the dean’s attention. Become his friend, get him alone, then kill him. Failure is not an option.”
“But I’m not ready! What happens if—“
“Failure is not an option.” repeated Rashnev, ignoring John’s outburst. “Our employers have generously agreed to pay your tuition for three years. So you’ll have to finish the mission by then. But take advantage of the free time. Train hard, study hard—who knows, you might even learn something. But never forget your objective. Now go. I have transportaion set up for you.” As John went off to the boat that would take him across the lake, he remembered that he had been apprehensive that something important would happen. I think that this qualifies... he thought to himself. He got in the boat, and sat wondering what the Psy Academy would be like, and worrying about his distressing mission . . . Just think of it as revenge, he thought to himself. your desire for revenge shall fuel you during this mission . . .

Gaah! Too long! (Don’t make a joke about that.) Sorry, guys, I’ll catch up to the rest of the story as soon as I can . . .

cyso:
Bob woke up early in the morning, earlier than normal. He opened his eyes and quickly took in his surroundings. A human had just been showed to the empty bunk across from his by some shadowlings, and was starting to arrange his belongings. Even though he was new to the academy, and had just received a red cape, Bob could tell he was far more experienced than a red cape, and probably more experienced than he was. He was a trained assassin. Bob could tell by the way he moved, by the way he was watching everything. He probably already knew he was awake, so there was no use trying to hide it. "Need any help?" he asked. "No, I've got everything now. But thanks anyways."
A friendly assassin? Not likely. Bob did his best to keep his mind concealed until the newcomer fell asleep, and even then, kept his mental defenses up, just in case. "I'm going to have to watch this one..."

Zackirus:
The bug chuckled. "Obviously. Anyone else would know me. In my former body anyway. Your lucky the human part of me is still in control. If it had been the Bug Queen, you'd be chopped in half and fed to the little ones by now", he said with a grim smile in his voice. Zack breathed a sigh of relief but began to hear scuttling in the corner of the room. He quickly turned his head and was shocked when a small blue bug came out of the corner and came up to him. "Perk of having the body of a half-grown Bug Queen. Bugs listen to me. Heh heh. But I only keep the Nymphs around. Just don't ask how I ended up like this. It's not a nice memory. And my name's Zaron. I used to have a last name but down here, one doesn't need it." Zaron chuckled as Zack reached his hand out to pet the bug. The bug’s pincher’s closed quickly but Zack’s hand retreated before the crunch. “The thing just tried to bite me!” Zack complained to Zaron. “Well why do you think, to them, your meat, and plenty of it.” Zaron licked. “Well Zaron, my name is Zack Acron, I'm from Traten, and I should get back to the Grand Hall before people start to notice I'm missing, see you around.”. Zaron returned his ending as Zack slowly found his way back to the stairs and climbed them. He got into the corridor and he began to feel hot again. He walked towards his room but was confronted by a large white creature. He thought  it was called a spriggat. “Ummm, hello, what would you like from me?” Zack stuttered as he had never been so close to  a creature like this. “One of your students said that you were feeling hot so I came to direct you to Mr. Srat, our Pryo teachers for him to give you a Flame Shield”. He followed the creature around until he reached a classroom door where inside a teacher who had patches of his hair singed off.. He entered the room and was greeted almost instantly. “Hello Mr.Arcon, are you here for help on Yesterday’s Paper?” “No Simeon” replied the creature, “He needs a flame shield, the heat must be too hot for him to handle”. “Ahh yes, thank you Grotius” Mr. Srat chirped as he used a Flame Shield on Zack. Zack began to feel Intense heat for a second and then everything felt pleasantly cool. Zack thanked him and walked back to his room. He lay down on his bed and fell asleep, finally cool enough to think about nothing.

bugfartboy:
"Well that was a somewhat pleasant surprise", Zaron thought to himself. "It's been so long since I've had intelligent company. I wonder what else has changed up in the Academy since my time there. Hmm..." Zaron pondered for a few seconds then made up his mind. "I'm just going to need to find out." Zaron focused on the Nymph for a few seconds as it's normal pale blue began to drain to black and the cellar seemed to get just a fraction lighter. The Nymph became totally black and chittered silently, nothing more than a shadow. Zaron smiled inwardly. It had worked. The process was simple. All one did was feed the body shadow until all but the will, human or non, remained and the body was consumed to provide energy for the shadow. "Now go on my little friend, and check in on our new friend. But remember to stay out of the light", Zaron directed. As the bug began to silently scitter away, he made contact with it and began to see the upper world for the first time in over a year.

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