Writing 2014-06-25

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[Note: Backfill somewhere.]

Larrikan is looking up complex combinations of reagents for Coldwillo when Professor Djarlee finds him. Djarlee tells Larrikan, “There is a branch of magic we have not touched on, and you should see. I do not know if you will like it, but you should see it.”

Larrikan says, “Yes, sir. I have enjoyed most everything so far. What is this new branch?”

“Combat magic,” explains Djarlee, telling Larrikan, “You probably know all the magical components, but there is a certain mind set which it helps to foster. And, as little as we see it around here, magic can make or break a battle.”

“I understand,” Larrikan says, “When do we start?”

“You start when the Combat Master arrives,” Djarlee tells him, “He should be here in the next few days. If he will teach you.”

“Why wouldn’t he teach me?” Larrikan asks.

“He is a narrow-minded bigot,” the usually mild Professor says, vehemently, “He rarely acknowledges non-humans, much less teaches them. He is even worse towards women. You will do well not to mention Coldwillow to him. Or he to her, now that I think of it. They hate each other.”

“Lovely,” comments Larrikan.

Professor Djarlee advises Larrikan, “Don’t let him goad you; keep your temper. But also stand your ground and make sure he has to deal with you as a mage. You are a qualified mage and he daren’t discount that too much.”

“Oh!” adds the professor, “Don’t call him ‘dwarf’ or gnome. He is full human and touchy about it.”

A day passes uneventfully, but late in the afternoon of the next, while Larrikan is copying out a set of patterns for Professor Djarlee, the door to the office bursts open, and a somewhat short, broad human comes in. The man has long black hair pulled into a loose bunch at the back of his head, bushy black eyebrows which are almost as mobile as Larrikan’s ears, sharp brown eyes, and a neatly trimmed moustache and goatee. He is wearing a long sword slung over his back, black leathern armor (with plates of steel in it, as it turns out), heavy black hob-nailed boots, and an astonishing collection of knives. He has a large traveling pack, which he is wearing by only one strap.

This ma looks piercingly at Larrikan and says loudly and, “What are you doing in here, messing with the wizard’s books, boy? Get out before you break something!”

Larrikan finishes the line he is drawing. This seems to enrage the armored man, who adds, “Go on, get! Or do I have to come over there and knock some sense into your furry head?”

Larrikan carefully marks the page in the book he is using and closes it. He turns to face the human and replies evenly, “You must be Raven Cragclaw. Professor Djarlee told me you were coming. I am Larrikan of the Swift Folk, and am no kind of “boy”! I am neither a human nor a child. In addition, I am a full Mage, and the Professors assistant while I am working towards Master Mage. I assure you, I will cause no damage here.” He adds, “The professor is currently lecturing to the undergraduate class. Is there anything I can help you with until he returns?”

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