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 Lux's Task

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PostSubject: Lux's Task   Sun Jul 19, 2009 8:22 pm

((From the dining hall. 2nd day))

<<Lux>>

For the first time in his memory, Lux felt a distinct sense of trepidation when he stepped into the library. He used the tunnels to avoid the crowds, and the library when he stepped inside seemed to watch him, waiting for him to take a false step. Once that happened, he knew, Michael York would be on him with all the terror of a banshee, or a hell-hound.

Speaking of the man, he ought to find him and ask about the books. Surely there must be some kind of list?

He wanted to drag his feet; presenting himself to York made him feel all of ten years old, waiting for his father to come home and punish him for something. The "Just you wait until your father comes home" was the most terrorizing sentence in the world for a young Lux.

But he made himself do it. His pride would settle for nothing less.


((should be able to do this before the tours start arriving, so it shouldn't interfere with the other thread))
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PostSubject: Re: Lux's Task   Sun Jul 19, 2009 8:57 pm

<< Michael York >>

He knew instantly when Lux entered the library. Of course he did. He knew when anyone was in his library, but especially Lux, because he was expecting him.

The student was standing looking around, worry etched in the tenseness around his eyes. As it should be. Lux had reason to be worried, especially after his behaviour the other day. "Looking for me?" he said, standing behind Lux, no sound nor presence having preceded his voice.

Before the other could turn, he would feel that inexorable grip on his shoulder, keeping him turned away from him. The long slender fingers might as well have been iron bars for all that they moved. Michael leaned down, his lips close to both the vein of the other's neck, and the soft curve of the ear. "You seem nervous Lux." he said, his voice barely a murmur of cold air at his ear. "Were you wanting to ask me a question?" His fingers teased over the exposed skin of the other's neck, one long dagger-hard nail tilting the chin upwards ever so slightly, so very dangerous. "I suggest you stop stalling and go and find a book to start on. I recommend 'Aspects of the soul' by Marc Dumas. You can find it in the Hathford Room in the second last aisle on the second floor." He let his nail trail over the other's neck just a little more before he released the student and stood straight, not stepping back, but not stepping forward either, Lux, after all, would likely have to step back if he wanted to turn and face him, if he dared.
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PostSubject: Re: Lux's Task   Mon Jul 20, 2009 6:14 am

<<Lux>>

Before he actually took a step in the right direction, but after he'd already committed himself to the action, heavy weight landed on Lux's shoulder. Mouth falling open with a gasp, he startled, but the iron grip held him motionless.

Power. Heavy, oppressive, pressing down against him. He'd gotten complacent; he had none of his magical defenses up, and Lux knew he could be crushed instantly. Fear washed through him.

While Lux had heard stories about the 'Librarian from Hell' from students who had the misfortune of landing on York's bad side, he'd always dismissed such stories out of hand. He enjoyed a comfortable, almost cordial relationship with the man, and it was in that instant, clawed, icy fingers against his neck, daggers whispering against his ear, that Lux realized all that he had lost the previous afternoon.

The knowledge swept over him with melancholy, but instead of sinking lower into his thoughts, his spine straightened stubbornly, anger aroused. He held still, breathing through his nose as he gritted his teeth and listened to his instructions while he gathered the shreds of his dignity around him.

So, their friendship had descended to this, had it? Well, Lux had lived with the insufferable Kelly for decades, slaving over various alchemical ingredients. If he could handle that man's perfectionism and fits, he could weather this as well. At least it was only reading and not grinding his fingers to the bone on mortar and pestle.

By the time York let him go, Lux had his shame and rage well bottled and shoved deep down inside, or so he thought. He vowed to himself never to let up his guard again. He would not be caught this way twice.

He turned, taking a step back to stare the librarian assitant in the eye. He was a sorcerer, too, in some ways more powerful than York, less so in others, for no two wizards could ever really be considered equal in everything, but he resented being made to feel like a fool or a child.

"Don't play games with me," he said finally. Bad enough that the man had to loom so; Lux felt small and insignificant enough as it were.

He would pause if spoken to; otherwise leaving in his usual steady pace to the room indicated.
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PostSubject: Re: Lux's Task   Mon Jul 20, 2009 8:37 am

He found himself pleased with the result of his interaction with Lux. The point had been made, and made well. He did not find it too harsh, though of course he found very little too harsh when it came to others, but with this one, well, he was more than most students.

Oh, but the wash of fear was delicious, it teased his nostrils and on his tongue, made him crave the blood that was just beneath the surface. Any other student he might have just taken it, and indeed, with some he had, but Lux.. well.. he was a vintage best left to mature. And boy, Lux needed that maturity, but today was a good step on the way to that.

As the other turned and spoke to him, he smiled. It was a dangerous smile, much like a tiger might give just before it ripped you to threads. The smile that said 'I have you, little meal, and I will enjoy you any way I please'. But then, Lux was not a meal, at least not yet.

"Games?" he said, pausing a moment as his gaze swept the other "games, Lux? No. I play no games with you. I am teaching you. You will not forget this lesson quickly." He reached out and grabbed the other's chin with preternatural speed, holding it there. "You think this a punishment no doubt, as others would. But you are not others. You are the one that has sat at my side and talked without fear. Consider that you do not find yourself catatonic with fear now, consider you are not huddled in some corner with your mind gone and your body rendered pointless, as I could so easily do right now." His voice was a low purr, more akin to the seduction of a snake than of a teacher to pupil. "Knowledge is power, and knowledge controls that power as well. You lack knowledge, and I am giving it to you. Now get to it." The last three words were bitten off, harsh, as he let the other's chin go.

Although it was true that in some respects Lux was more powerful in some aspects of magic, Michael was well read enough to have defences that the student didn't know about, or comprehend. Michael had no fear from his pupil, and he was far more dedicated to learning to ever leave that position.
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PostSubject: Re: Lux's Task   Tue Jul 21, 2009 7:48 am

<<Lux>>

Stubborn determination blazed in Lux's eyes at the scathing, half-mocking words. He wanted to say 'Try it!' or something else challenging, but he'd been caught flat-footed and he choked back the furious response on the tip of his tongue. Mouth set in a grim line, hands clenched into fists at his side, he spun on his heel instead and marched away.

Few others on this campus could come close to Lux's level of power, and he'd been confident that he could pull his shields about himself quick enough to block any attack, but the Library Assistant was another matter. Lux quivered like a taut bowstring, desiring to strike out, but for once he reined in his temper. York was not just another sorcerer, and he hated -- hated -- that he'd lost the respect and friendship of the one person he admired more than anyone else he'd met in the last century or so. That it was due to his own stupidity was even worse.

As he walked down the hall, I'll show you! pinballed around in his head.

He wasn't quite sure why York was so contemptuous of Lux's shadow. He'd puzzled and puzzled and puzzled over that one, but he didn't know. He was, however, determined to figure it out. Perhaps the answer was somewhere in all the books York had assigned.

He didn't doubt for an instant that he wouldn't find the Dumas book right where York had said it would be. The librarian knew where every book in the library was with an uncanny ability that Lux had jokingly tested over the years. He'd never once tripped the man up. It was a little infuriating, really, but handy, too, in its way.

Pulling down the big book, Lux continued on to the Senior study rooms and settled down in a large, comfortable chair. He was still angry, but he treated the book carefully, tenderly. Books were precious, and Lux respected the knowledge they contained. He settled in to read, his mind pushing the gear that would commit everything he read to memory. It was a handy trick; one that had taken many painstaking years to learn.

It would be worth it, though, because Lux was determined to prove himself again.
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