Tag Archive: Mikhael

The light was dim in the corridor the man carried him down. Mikhael frowned; suddenly his curiosity was peeked. “Where are we going?” he asked.

“You have an uncle?” the man asked.

Mikhael didn’t answer. He wasn’t sure he could. He looked at the man who carried him through the dim light and nodded. Something made him want to trust this man. “I haven’t seen him in years.”

“Since you joined the Underground,” the man said. “He thought they were nothing but trouble and now you see how right he was. Left you high and dry, have they?”

“What do you know?” Mikhael murmured. There was no way he could escape. He couldn’t walk, let alone run – or climb the thousands os stairs the man had carried him down.

He looked up at the last of the fading daylight. It was down to a scant sliver, arc-shaped like a quarter moon. “My uncle sent you,” he murmured. “To get me?”

“We have need of someone of your skills,” the man said. Mikhael nodded once. Any hope was better than none – even if that hope was as scant as the light of a quarter moon.

Mikhael had always thought of the members of the Underground as a sort of family. They took care of one another, or so he thought. If something happened to one of the agents while on a mission, the others would make sure he had everything he needed. That was what he thought, anyway.

Now he knew differently. So caught up in the ceremonies surrounding magic, they hadn’t even acknowledged him until he actually gone through the labyrinth inscribed on the tiles leading to the Sanctuary. By then it was too late. The poison had already eaten away at his leg. He passed out as soon as he crossed the thresh-hold the second time. The pain from his leg had been unbearable.

He woke with no pain at all. He’d said as much and received a grim look from Dasha. His leg was gone, they’d told him eventually. It had been the only way to save his life. With only one leg, there was no way he could be an agent. Still there was his bookshop and the library in the Sanctuary. He was still as knowledgeable a spell-seeker as he had been, even lacking a leg.

He’d asked Evgeny, his partner, to please have someone open the shop, at least so the special orders he often received would be taken care of. They would bring in enough revenue to pay the daily taxes. He’d hoped the man would be willing to help him in this.

Now he stood on the front stoop of his shop. “Repossessed for back taxes,” the sign read. Mikhael wanted to scream out his utter despair and frustration at the world. He’d lost his leg, his shop, all his worldly possessions and for what? Nothing changed. Nothing ever would. The government would continue to round up the “useful” mages. The books of magic would continue to be collected by the same government and tucked away so none could learn magic except through the government programs. Those deemed superfluous would continue to be eliminated.

He sank to the ground and sighed as the last shreds of his hope faded into the wind. Without a shop in town, the Underground would see him as a burden. They’d already said they could afford to support every disenfranchised mage in Claris.

“You look like you could used some help,” a soft voice said from across the alley. Mikhael looked up and chuckle wryly. Was this stranger offering? That was too much to hope for. Before he could even protest the man had plucked him up off the steps and was carrying him down the street.

Was the man a mage hunter? Mikhael didn’t care. His life couldn’t get any worse.

Never Angela

Galen landed almost gracefully on the roof of a building. He knew he was in another realm. A mage had summoned him – to use his powers once and then release him without sending him home. The man had given him a physical form – one that was basically like unto his own. Unlike his natural form, his wings would not disappear if he willed them away. The hair and eyes were also fairer and he seemed to emit a sort of glow.

A rather young man in a flowing robe looked up in wonder as he landed and their eyes met. “An angel?” the man whispered.

The young gryphon spirit had no idea what an angel was but he didn’t want to stick around to find out. People were approaching the young man from three different alleys. “Look out,” Galen called back before he flew away.

He didn’t stop to see if the young man was alright. He had sensed – for just a moment – the opening of a portal to his home world. He would be able to get home through it. He would shed the borrowed form and return to his natural one.

The warning was enough that the young man was able to flee just a step ahead of his pursuers. He ran down the only alley they were not approaching from. Of course it was a dead end. He leapt up to catch the bottom rung of a metal trellis. One of the witch catchers stabbed his foot just before he swung it up to reach the base of the trellis. He climbed over and swung back down. Was the being an angel? It had saved his life; there was no doubt. He glanced back at the roof he’d seen the being on but it was empty. He sighed and limped off toward the Underground.

Monica Ferris

an author with many hats

A Land of Curiosity

From the files of Shynian Intelligence

Heather's Fancies

tales from the enchanted gardens and shadow hollow


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