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Chatoyant College

Chapter 10: Ambient Magic

“What is it?” Dawn asked immediately, reaching for the origami dragon as Professor Lal handed them back the things they’d brought her to inspect. It was, happily, quite intact, not even a wing bent, but her fingers tingled slightly when she touched it. She looked it over again, but it didn’t look magical. Not that she would be able to tell.

“It’s not something we did, is it?” asked Corrie, adjusting the posters in the crook of her arm.

Chapter 9: Sweet and Salty

Dawn rested her elbows on her desk and pressed her hands together, palms flat and facing up. Out of the corner of her eye, she could see that Corrie had her hands cupped. But Dawn didn’t have that much confidence in her own magic ability; the best she expected to do was dampen her palms.

Chapter 8: Uncontrolled

As soon as Professor Lal said they could start, Corrie brought her hands together, palms up, and stared into them. It seemed like an odd way to create water, but at least they didn’t have to stand up the whole time, as they had during the fire classes. She reached for her magic, and her eyes widened in surprise; it was indeed different. She could find it easily—all the practice she’d done, lighting candles, on Wednesday and Thursday must have helped—but the feel of it had changed. It took her a moment to pinpoint the difference, and then she realized it was the temperature.

Chapter 7: Water Magic

Friday, November 7

Professor Lal had, once again, told them not to bring anything to class that day. No one knew what the plan was for that class, so there was a lot of whispering as they waited for her to arrive. Corrie was whispering with Dawn and Roe, as well. “Do you think we’ll still be working on fire?” she wondered.

“I don’t think there’s much more about fire to learn, is there?” Roe asked. “We can light candles and set fires… I guess it would help to learn a magical way to put fires out.”

Chapter 6: Hibernation

It had been a long time since Edie had been to a Rainbow Alliance meeting. Most Wednesday evenings, she spent with Leila. Today, they’d made no plans, and she hadn’t been able to get in touch with Leila. On Monday, they had gone to the orchard by the co-op and checked that the trees were bedding down properly for the night, but that was the only time they’d spent together all week. So despite her social anxiety, Corrie and Dawn had persuaded her to come with them to the meeting.

Chapter 5: Lighting the Candle

Edie was scowling at the suggested revisions to her essay for French and seriously contemplating printing it out, if only so she could use a lot of red ink (and possibly tear it up), when Corrie came in. She turned quickly, grateful for the interruption. “Hey! How was your day?”

Chapter 4: Everything is a Metaphor

It took Corrie the whole rest of the class, but she finally figured it out. Her magic didn’t move or change; she didn’t have to grab hold of it the way she had been. Of course, it took her three tries after she decided to touch it more gently to actually do so—her mental “hands” weren’t as easy to control as her real ones. But she finally managed to light the wick and get the candle burning like a normal one, just before class ended.

Chapter 3: New to It

Dawn stared down at the piece of wood in her bucket. It had evidently been a branch from a birch tree, judging by the white, papery bark with black spots throughout. She wondered if Professor Lal had just wandered around the woods and picked up fallen branches. She looked for a spot that would be good for starting the fire. She knew she was procrastinating.

Chapter 2: Flame

Corrie opened the bag, took one tea light out, and placed it in the middle of her desk. Then she put the bag on her chair—she had no plans to sit down—so it wouldn’t be in her line of sight to distract her, and because she thought there was a small possibility that if she could see all the candles, she would end up lighting them all at once, and that would be bad for several reasons.

Chapter 1: Practice

Wednesday, November 5

Corrie got up that morning feeling both excited and nervous. She was excited because she knew she could do the magic they’d be practicing in class. She’d already done it on Monday. On the other hand, she was nervous because she had no idea if she’d be able to control it. She didn’t really know what she’d done on Monday that had made the candle flame up like that, so she didn’t know how she’d do it differently.

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