Black Watch Asylum Chapter 29
March 1st, 1690. Today’s my thirteenth birthday. Father has sailed to America even though he promised to visit me on my birthday. I’m a little sad he’s not here, but I’m also excited because today is the day I start the Academy. I’ve come into my power just like father predicted and finally get to learn magic. He says I’m an Arcane Mage, just like him.
August 29th, 1690. Father has finally come back from America. He said they’ve established a place for our kind in the New World. Mother and I have to pack our things. I look forward to traveling to Salem, Massachusetts. Magic isn’t as magical as I thought it would be. I’ve spent six months at the Academy and all we’ve learned so far is that every spell costs. The professors teach us complicated mathematics and physics to calculate for every possible outcome and error. The magical aspect of magic has been ruined completely, it’s all boring formulas. I’ve absorbed enough World Energy to cast 1st ranked spells. It’s not much better than zero ranked spells but it is an improvement. It’s so boring at the Academy. It’s a good thing I made a friend. Ann has been at the school two years longer than me but we seem to hit it off quite well. She helps me with the complicated mathematics and science.
Father says it’s important to learn the proper use of magic. He says there is a finite amount of magic in the air and to use it without calculation could mean an incomplete spell that blew up in your face. Speaking of father, today he’s received an apprenticeship with the Grandmaster. It’s a great honor for him but he doesn’t seem too happy about it. I wonder why.
January 13th, 1692. A mage was killed today. Father says the mage deviated from the path of magic and turned to dark magic. A discipline where one consorted with demons to cast magic far greater than any normal human can. Why would anyone resort to this? I asked father this question and he said that it was within human nature to become greedy for power. I know this will never happen to me. I love my family too much to abandon them.
It’s dark already? Nate looked at the horizon and saw the sun setting. He’d been so wrapped up in his mother’s journal that he’d lost track of time. The journal contained a lot of information useful for first time mages, but that wasn’t what fascinated Nate so much.
Going through his mother’s journal, seeing her experience with magic from a young age, it made him feel like he was connected. After his first family died he felt lost. To be alone in the world, without friends or family, that was a scary thought to him.
Even when Nate discovered he had a demon father and a human mother who was a mage, he didn’t feel connected to them. But now, reading his mother’s diary, he felt like he was getting to know her as a person.
Nate looked down at the diary. He wanted to continue reading but he’d been reading for hours already. “Return.” Nate said aloud.
His mother’s diary turned into a flash of light that returned into his magic core. Next he focused on the mind-bender, the magical artifact left to him by his mother. Like always Nate split his mental energy into a hundred and one threads, then moved those threads to the holes on the box.
The box sucked up the mental threads, draining his mental energy dry. Nate was used to this.
The top of the box opened and a condensed beam of light shot out of the box and crashed into Nate’s head. Nate felt his mind being squeezed as if a giant held his head in a grip. “What the hell?” Nate muttered as his hands supported his head.
The pain continued to increase for minutes, before it finally died down. When it was over Nate felt his mental energy was stronger. He split his mind into a hundred and one threads again. The threads were thicker than they were before.
Nate sent the threads down into the box again, repeating the process over and over. It was painful, but Nate was no stranger to pain.
April 18th, 1692. Father has been promoted to the rank of Inquisitor. I’m happy for him, this means our family will enjoy greater prestige amongst the Mage families. It’s too bad father must go away for three months; I will miss him greatly.
July 21st, 1692. What is wrong with father? He’s returned today, it should’ve been a joyous occasion, but instead he looks so sad. Mother tried to cheer him up but he yelled at her. I hope he goes back to his normal self, he’s usually so calm and caring. He made me promise him that I’ll never join the Inquisitors. I don’t understand, why is father behaving so strange?
July 30th, 1692. They killed Ann! Father and a group of inquisitors said she deviated from the path but I know that is a lie. Ann loved magic. Furthermore, she has a husband and a baby. Why would someone who’s already happy with their life deviate? It made no sense! I hate father!
He wants me to get married and to leave magic alone. I might’ve done it in the past, I had no love for magic. But now, for Ann, I will throw myself into Magic studies and become a great Mage. So great a Mage that I’ll join the Inquisitors. I don’t care what he thinks.
“Nate?… Nate, do you hear me?!”
“Huh?” Nate looked up from his mother’s diary. Aiden was sitting across from him with a burger in hand.
“You’ve been obsessed with that book for days now, what is it?” Aiden asked.
Nate put the book down on top of the table. A few minutes ago, Aiden went off to the bathroom while their food was being made. Nate began reading his mother’s diary again. He couldn’t help himself. For the past week, he’s been binge reading the diary. He felt like an image of his mother was appearing in his mind, and with each flip of the page that image became stronger and more defined.
A brief flicker of guilt washed through him as he remembered his real mother, the one who raised him since childhood. He was getting better at dealing with the guilt. It wasn’t that he was abandoning his real family, he loved his real family dearly, but he had to accept the fact they were gone. He’d never see them again.
I shouldn’t feel guilty, right? It’s not betrayal, is it?
“Nate… there you go dozing again, did you hear him?”
Nate shook himself from his thoughts. “Sorry… the book, right?”
“Forget the book, did you just hear what he said?” Aiden pointed to a rugged looking man. Nate hadn’t noticed the man at all. When he shook his head, Aiden continued. “Anza is re-opening the wild hunt.”
Nate paused at that. Suddenly he felt a strong sense of satisfaction well up from deep within. “Good.” He smiled.
Aiden flinched backwards. The rugged-looking man beside him stepped back.
Nate looked at them both. “What?” He said.
“Your eyes just changed color…”
“You’re seeing things.” Nate chuckled, shaking it off. How could one’s eyes change?
“Alright… well when do we go inside?”
Nate shook his head. “’We’ don’t. I go alone.”
A defiant look appeared on Aiden’s face. Before he could argue, Nate spoke up again. “I love you like a brother Aiden. I promise after I smash this prison to pieces and expose this cruel prison for what it is, I’ll take you away from here. Me and you, we’re going to travel the world, go places kids should be. You haven’t lived until you’ve been to Disneyland. As far as Anza is concerned, put her out of your thoughts.”
February 12th, 1701. The Grandmaster has chosen me as his disciple. He says I have as much talent as father, that I could maybe even surpass him if I focused. I plan on becoming an Inquisitor no matter what! I still light a candle for Ann on the eve of her death, I will never forget Ann.
April 9th, 1701. Why do we need sleep? Grandmaster has asked me this question a week ago. At first I responded with the obvious, our bodies need sleep. But that wasn’t the right answer, at least not the answer he was looking for. Why do we need to sleep? Grandmaster say’s all we can do is explain why we sleep.
April 10th, 1701. I gave up on the question, I couldn’t answer it. Apparently, that’s the answer Grandmaster wanted. He said human mages have such a hard time with magic because they’re always trying to explain the ‘Why?’. But isn’t this what they taught us in the Academy? Grandmaster say’s the formulas the Academy teaches is for those with low talent, for those with true talent they’re ‘Shown the way’. He also say’s I’ll be on a journey now, one that branches off from the norm. I’m a little scared, it sounds like he wants me to deviate from the path.
Nate was in an alley with a golden spear right in front of him. “It’s finally complete…” Nate said in awe.
The God’s Javelin took forever to master, it would’ve been impossible without the gift from his mother, but now that he’d learned it he couldn’t help but feel amazed. The Javelin took all hundred and one threads to create, once created it occupied twenty-five percent of his mental energy. That was all.
Before when he used the incomplete spear, he used all his mental energy just to keep it manifested and in his hands. Now it was manifested, and he didn’t need to even think about it.
“Time to test it out.” Nate climbed aboard the golden spear. It stayed in mid-air as if it was being supported. Once Nate was balanced atop it, he gave it a command: “Fly!”
The spear shot up into the sky, unencumbered by human body. As soon as he sent the command, the spear jerked up into the air and Nate’s whole body did multiple backflips before crashing on the ground.
“Son of a bitch. I should’ve expected that.” Nate muttered as he rubbed his head. The spear was already two-hundred feet in the air, soaring higher. “Stop!”
Although Nate could control the spear, if the spear got too far away than it would eventually unravel. The spear stopped in mid-air. Return! The spear began flying back towards him. Giving mental commands were not necessary, but it helped with intention.
The spear appeared before him again. This time Nate climbed aboard and fastened himself on it with several threads of mental energy. Fly!
The spear soared into the night sky with Nate on top of it.
This is amazing. Nate felt as if the shackles of gravity were cast aside as he soared into the night sky, free as a bird. He climbed upward towards the full moon. Wind whistling as it ruffled his hair and clothes. Nate spread his arms out to the side, palms up-turned, eyes closed. He felt exhilarated as the chill settled on his skin. A part of him knew he could shield himself using mental energy, but he didn’t do it. He felt as if the sky was a living being that opened its arms to him, welcoming him. Tears dripped down his face as his heart sang in freedom.
Up, up, up he climbed until the buildings became little squares. He looked down at Black Watch Asylum and thought about all the problems waiting for him down below. Than he looked up, for the first time since his incarceration he saw the outside world. A part of him felt like flying out of the Asylum, to disappear never to return. He squashed that idea.
“I’m no coward.” He said with a shake of the head. “Two more weeks until the next wild hunt. Two more weeks until I burn this place to the ground.”