Post Fri Nov 03, 2006 2:04 am

Answering a Call

The letter from an unexpected owl in the middle of the night lies open on the desk of Professor Kraven Bloodthorne, Divination Master at Avistrum, Academy of Sorcery.
The message was from Mordecai Argiletum, the former librarian of Avistrum whom had just recently returned to Timmernak, a boy's school for magical learning. His school needed his help, and now it was quite apparent he needed assistance.
When Kraven read the letter, he had quite the odd sensation. He was surprised. It was quite an odd feeling for one so talented in fortelling the future.
Mordecai had written to him asking for help. The situation at Timmernak was becoming increasingly worse, and they were in desperate need of Kraven's talents.
The answer did not come to the Divination Professor immediately. He needed to consult his cards. They were Tarot cards which he, himself had created and rarely used. He usually had no need for them. But here, the answer eluded him and he needed their guidance.
Should he leave Avistrum?
The cards answered their master quite plainly. Now, a resignation letter not entirely finished sits next to the post from Mr. Argiletum. The rest of Kraven Bloodthorne's office is becoming more and more bare as his trunks and suitcases become packed. His work ceases as he hears a couple of footsteps enter his quarters. Kraven's back is to the door, but he knows who is standing in the threshold.
"What do you want, Dowling?"
"I see you've decided to go to Timmernak," replied the Headmaster.
"Mordercai write to you as well?"
"No, he didn't."
"Developing a talent in divination, Dowling?" snarled Kraven.
"Not at all. You know that I was never any good at it. Lysander told me."
"I see." said Kraven as he returned to packing. At that moment, Lysander's head swiveled into the room.
No one spoke for several long moments. The only sounds in the room came from Kraven as he finished his task. Clark was the one who broke the silence when he asked, "Do you need any help?"
"No," snapped Kraven, "and especially not from you, Dowling."
"Kraven, I am sorry for whatever has perpetuated this ridiculous feud between us, this hatred. If things had happened slightly differently, you and I might have been..."
"Friends?", interrupted Kraven with a derisive laugh. "How can someone who is supposed to be such a hero be so naive? I will never understand that about you, Dowling. Your insipid belief that there is good in everyone," his eyes glanced over to Lysander's head, "or your faith in redemption. Sometimes, there is no hope. Such as for you and I to be anything more than rivals. So Dowling, spare me your farewell speech where you try to make things right between us. Don't even think about offering me to shake your hand. I'm going to a place where my talents will be appreciated."
With that, Kraven waved his wand and all of his trunks, suitcases and bags rose from the ground and floated out of the room. He followed his belongings as Clark Dowling watched him leave the room with a stony expression on his face.
"Do you think you'll return to Avistrum?" Clark asked.
Kraven halted midstep and said, "Sometimes Clark, the future is uncertain to even the greatest divination master." His black robes billowing, Kraven Bloodthorne swept out of Clark Dowling's sight. After a few moments, a gentle smile broke the hard expression on the Headmaster's face.
"What is that look for?" asked Lysander.
"Hope."
"Hope?" replied Lysander incredulously. "How can you possibly see hope in what he said?"
Professor Dowling turned slowly to look at Lysander before saying,"He called me Clark."
Clark Dowling walked slowly out of the room and into the corridor. He turned back towards the room and held his hand up. The doors slowly closed with an echoing thud. He took a few steps to leave, but stopped abruptly and walked back to the orb. He held his hand out to it as he asked his question.
The orb swirled and said, "Outlook hazy, ask again later."
With a soft laugh and a nod, Clark said, "Hope. There's always hope."