Chapter 2

Blaise was up early the next morning, even though he'd stayed up late last night, studying. He was not a morning person, but if he wished to become a full-fledged mage, then he'd have to study a lot, and prove himself three times in trials of magic.

The first was initiation, the second was the task that he was about to embark on, with Aronus's assistance. Blaise went over his task in his mind. He had to reach three of the centers of arcane magic and learn from the masters. He was allowed to have help with this task, but the final one, he had to do by himself. It had been Hadire's idea to send along help from the start that would have to stay with Blaise until the end. Aronus just seemed like a good choice.

Blaise stood, and after putting the book that he had been studying back on the shelf where he found it, and went to wake Aronus.

Aronus looked groggily at the shadow that was trying to shake him awake. He rolled over and grabbed a pillow and put it over his head. Blaise ripped the pillow away from Aronus and poured a glass of cold water over him. Aronus groaned and swatted at the air where he thought Blaise was. Blaise left and grabbed a whole pitcher of water and dumped it over Aronus.

Aronus jumped up out of his bed, soaking wet. "Hey! Whyjoo do that?" he mumbled. "Do you realize how deeply you sleep? You must be the worst thief ever!" Blaise exclaimed. "No!" Aronus replied defiantly, "It's just that I haven't slept soundly in days!" "Okay then. anyways, it's time for breakfast, then we're off on our journey!" Blaise shouted exuberantly, "Now, come on!"

With that, he rushed out of the door, leaving Aronus to tag behind.

When Aronus did reach the "nook", which was actually a small room off the kitchen with a table with accompanying chairs and a bar counter with stools, Blaise was already attacking his expansive breakfast with gusto. Aronus sat down, and wondered how to get his food, when suddenly a plate piled high with bacon and eggs appeared in front of him.

Blaise took a pause from eating, to explain to Aronus, who was looking bemused, "It's magically created, it's good, but it lacks spirit or feeling that is usually in homemade food it almost tastes as if it were fake*. We have to use it, because neither my master nor myself can cook," "Well nor can I, so you don't have to feel bad," Aronus replied, then took a tentative bite then started in with enthusiasm.

After breakfast, Blaise took Aronus to the stables, to show him the horses that they'd be taking on the journey.

Aronus saw many fancy looking horses in the stable, but Blaise continued past them. They started to see scruffier horses, and finally they stopped at a couple of stalls with two plain brown horses. According to what Hadire had told Blaise earlier; these were 'endurance horses'.

Blaise approached the horse on their left, and reached out his hand to stroke the horse's muzzle. There was a plaque on the stall door that proclaimed that the horse's name was Kale. Aronus glanced down at the plaque on the other stall it read Chæra.

A stable boy came down the corridor towards tem and then spoke, "Your bags are prepared so if you'd like to bring those horses to the courtyard, then you can be off!"

Aronus and Blaise looked at each other, not entirely sure what to do. The stable boy sighed and grabbed two ropes from a hook nearby and attached them to the horse's halters. He started to lead the horses in the direction of the courtyard. "By the way, my name is Zit, incase you cared." the stable boy, Zit said sarcastically at the exit of the stables.

* The same would be with mass produced food, if it were invented