Miranda sat in her thrown and looked at the letter in her hand. It was from the council, and it wasn't good news. Since Miranda took the magic away from the citizens of Coventry when Aron was first believed to be dead, and then returned it, they too would be tested. And if one student failed, Not only would Miranda and Aron lose their magic, they would lose their royalty status.
"You called?" a female voice asked. Miranda looked up from the letter and into the brown eyes of her friend and her daughters' protector. Ileana stood there, her hands at her side, a look of concern on her face.
"Yes. We have a serious problem." Miranda stood up and walked down the steps until she reached Ileana. She handed her the letter and then turned to look out the window, into the mystical sky.
When Ileana finished the letter, she was speechless. "How can they expect us to have every citizen in Coventry trained by the time they get here. There's just not enough time."
"I know." Miranda said. She still had her back to her. "I have an idea, but it would be extremely difficult."
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Demitri looked at the clock in the kitchen. Only ten minutes until his shift was over for the day. "Demitri, Mr. and Mrs. Barnes are here. Take them some tea and scones." The head cook demanded. "When you're done with that, you are dismissed."
"Got it." Demitri said. He raised his hand and pointed at the table. A tray appeared with two hot cups of tea and a plate of scones. Since he had his magic back, things went a lot smoother.
He reached down to pick up the tray when a voice stopped him. "Leave it." He knew that voice before he saw where it originated from.
He turned and bowed. "King Aron." The other workers in the kitchen followed his lead.
Aron laughed. "You know you don't have to bow to me, Demitri. You're like family."
Demitri pulled himself up and looked into his king's eyes. "Thank you, sir. That means a lot to me."
Aron nodded. "Unfortunately I didn't come here to have a casual conversation. We need you in the conservatory." He picked up the tea tray and handed it to another kitchen waiter. "Please make sure that Mr. and Mrs. Barnes get this and then you're all relieved for the day."
Aron turned and headed out of the kitchen with Demitri hot on his heels. "Something's wrong." He said matter of fact.
"Yes, there is." Aron said.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
When they got to the conservatory, it was completely packed. Witches and warlocks were everywhere. Demitri went off to find Camryn. Aron joined his wife, Karsh and Ileana.
"Excuse me, your highnesses." A young witch, probably about age sixteen, made her way to the front of the crowd. She bowed respectfully. "You asked us all here today. Said it was an emergency."
Karsh and Ileana exchanged worried glances. "Yes." Aron answered. "We did call you here today. Yes, there is a serious matter approaching." Now it was Alex and Camryn's turn to exchange glances. Instinctively their hands went to their amulets.
"The council is arriving within a fortnight." Miranda took over. Alex leaned into Camryn. "The council?" She whispered. Camryn shrugged her shoulders out of bewilderment.
"For those of you who do not know, the council is a group of elderly witches and warlocks who have been around for a long time. They test new witches and warlocks when they come of age. If the student passes every test that the council throws at them, they keep their powers. If they fail, they lose their powers forever. This year they've decided to make matters worse. If the student does not pass, not only will they lose their powers but their teacher will too."
"But you took our magic to begin with. This is all your fault." An angry warlock shouted.
"Yes, I made a huge and terrible mistake. And not only do I regret doing so, but it has come back to hurt us. Most of you who are old enough to remember; there are some members of the council who feel that Coventry is better ruled in their hands. If each and everyone of you do not pass your testing. We will lose our magic and our right to rule Coventry." Miranda let the bomb drop.
Alex and Camryn were speechless. This wasn't fair. Demitri gave Camryn's hand a reassuring squeeze. She turned to look at him. "It will be alright." He whispered into her ear.
Karsh and Ileana took over. "We asked you all here today so that you may help us. My wife and I will split this group up and teach you everything that you will have to know for the testing."
"I will take all the moon people and Camryn since I am her protector." Ileana paused. "And by moon people I mean everyone who was born at night and their power is greatest at night. Karsh will take all the suns and Alex. This won't be easy. You will be pulling long hours, you will get tired, and you will be stressed, and we will be pushing you. This is no longer an individual matter. This effects the whole kingdom."
"But what about our families?" a young man asked. "I have to run my family's farm. If I'm here all day, nothing will get done."
Aron stepped forward. "For all of you who this effects greatly, please accept our sincere apologies. We will be sending our staff to assist the families of everyone that will be here." With that being said, everyone calmed down.
"Classes will begin bright and early tomorrow for me." Karsh stated. We have had guest rooms prepared for those of you who have a long ways to travel to get here and those of you who wish to stay."
"My classes will begin in the evening and lasting through until about midnight." Ileana informed her students. "We both expect serious dedication on your parts. We will teach you everything we know and everything we can."
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"I think we're unfair." A light feminine voice said. "Miranda and Aron did nothing wrong. They looked after Coventry and tended to its needs."
"That may be true, Lady Rhianna, but after Aron was thought to be killed, Miranda took magic away from everyone but the royal family and her daughter's protectors."
"Lord Grivveniss, you know she only did that because she thought was best at the time. Her and Aron have since returned everyone's magic." Lady Rhianna replied.
"I know. I truly do understand. But the future of magic is at stake." Lord Grivveniss stated.
"How about this?" Another voice from the council spoke up. "Aron and Miranda have proven themselves before. Let's not judge them before they prove themselves. If the students pass, we will, of course, continue to let them rule. If one student fails, we will take over Coventry. I hope it does not come to that. Like Lady Rhianna said, Aron and Miranda did nothing wrong."
"Why, Lady Fan, I think that is an excellent idea." Lady Rhianna praised her fellow council member. "All in favor?" One by one, all the council members raised their hands. Lady Rhianna looked to Lord Grivveniss. He too raised his hand. "It is settled."