“9 am, day 3 of the trial here and the Polshore court has begun to fill up. Now that the court has been opened to the public, lots of people unrelated to the trial have made the trip. No magic trial has ever had such a large following.
Our sources say this will be the last day of the trial. Each side has only called enough witnesses to last the day – though if needed the accuser or defender reserve themselves the right to ask for additional witnesses. The trial itself is about a father casting a spell on his son, but I think I speak for the public in suggesting that the interest comes from the father himself. Xavier is wildly known to be the most powerful witch alive. For him to be subject to a trial constructed by naturals sends a tremor.”
“On one side you have those sympathetic to the supernatural’s cause, accusing this trial of being an elaborate plot to lock up one of the few real supernaturals left in order to tilt the balance. On the other side, you have those who fear that Xavier Whitelight does not take his magical responsibilities seriously enough to be trusted to walk around freely without supervision. And then there are the extremists who ask for his death, before supernaturals wreak havoc again. That Xavier is simply the start to something bigger.”
“This is unnecessary. We all know what’s right, just like we all know how this will really finish[…]It’s unfair because this isn’t about Nikolas at all. It’s a battle of power. It’s just a lot of showing off. Whatever the result, a lot of people aren’t going to like this.”
“I have nothing but good things to say about Xavier. He has never caused any harm to me or anyone I know[…] I do believe he made a rash decision based on his son’s situation and can count many ways he could have went about it instead. All in all, he did what he thought was best although some may not get his view. I can also see Nikolas’ side of things where he went too far as to put him to sleep just to keep an eye on him. He could have heard Nikolas’s side of things before making that decision[…] Xavier, I believe, is not a threat. Everyone makes mistakes. That’s the honest truth.”
“My family came up with this trial. I can assure you the results will be more than fair[…]It’s intriguing to see how many people have come to watch this unfold. People have come from all corners of the world[…]Yes I do believe the end result here will tilt the established balance. If anything, this will show and comfort the public that we, as naturals, are not vulnerable. We have ways to defend ourselves and to restrict them, if worst comes to worst.”
“Shit Oscar, look at all these people.” Nikolas mumbled, glancing around the entrance. The trial was about to start, and the place was already packed.
“That’s a lot of people.” Oscar agreed.
“And they’re all here because they think my father is a danger to society.” Nikolas said, shaking his head.
“Well he is.” Oscar shrugged.
“Isn’t it funny?” Nikolas began, looking around the room again. “Like my dad spent the last twenty years basically hiding out, and he does ONE big thing and everyone suddenly gathers around.”
“It’s like they’re just using your dad as an excuse.”
“Precisely.” Nikolas said. These people didn’t care about their family drama. They were here to find the bigger meaning in all of this.
“Hello.” A female voice interrupted. “Sorry for interrupting.”
Both boys turned to the newcomer.
“Hello! And who are you?” Oscar cheerfully asked.
“Oh, I just have a small mini question,” She said with a nervous smile. “I just wanted to confirm something.”
“Quick before someone notices you.” Nikolas whispered, taking exaggerated glances around for the cops.
“Oh right, right, um, do you wear keyhole pyjamas?” She asked timidly.
Nikolas blinked at the question. “Pardon what?” He probably hadn’t heard right.
“I believe she asked you to confirm your pyjamas,” Oscar repeated for her. “Which yes, he wears keyhole pyjamas.”
“Ah thank you!” The girl grinned, turning around and leaving as quickly as she’d appeared.
“No but Oscar, how does she know that?” Nikolas asked.
“I haven’t told anyone I swear.” Oscar shrugged, small bolt popping out of his shoulder. “Oops…”
Nikolas jumped over the half wall to run after the girl. If he thought about it – even for just two seconds – there weren’t a lot of people who knew what kind of pyjamas he had and none of them would really feel compelled to ask him what kind he was wearing. No usually you did that if someone else had told you about something and you wanted to confirm it. And Nikolas had a wild hunch this girl knew the one he’d seen in astral. “Wait up!” He called after the girl who’d disappeared in the crowd.
“Okay bye, have fun.” Oscar said with a wave.
Sebastien came jogging over with a panicked look. “Niko-! You let him cross over?” He asked aghast.
“Was I not supposed to?” Oscar asked with a frown.
“He’s not supposed to go on the other side.” Sebastien grimaced.
“Well sorry.” Oscar rolled his eyes.
Sebastien slumped over the wall. “We’re so close to the end…let’s hope nothing happens.”
Oscar shrugged, gesturing at James. “Isn’t that why grandpa is here?”
Sebastien glanced back before sighing. He was getting ‘end’ jitters. Everything had gone rather smoothly so far…
Meanwhile, Nikolas weaved through the crowd trying to find the girl again. She’d successfully blended in, and in his search he found a bed of hair he recognized.
“Zac?” He asked, tapping the red head on the shoulder.
He spun around. “Niko!”
“Zac what are you doing here?” Nikolas asked confused, but pleased, to see him.
“Wait I was just told we couldn’t talk to you.” Zac frowned.
“It’s okay I jumped over.” Nikolas said with a dismissive wave.
“Yes sure, that makes it okay.” Zac shook his head.
The woman behind him smiled. “He’s as energetic as you told me about.” She said.
“You talk about me?” Nikolas practically snorted.
Zac just rolled his eyes. “I talk to my mom about all the things that annoy me.”
“Hi Zac’s mom, I’m Nikolas.”
“You’re a polite boy Nikolas.” She said with a small chuckle. “Zac and I have been watching the trial closely on t.v. We’re here to let you know we support you.”
“I can’t believe the gall of some of the people that witnessed. Really ridiculous shit.” Zac said with a groan.
“It was really important for Zac that you knew this.” The woman added.
Zac gave her a look. “Mom, really, was that necessary?”
“I’ll leave you boys to chat, good luck Nikolas. You have some questionable people against you, but that’s all the more reason for you to pull through it. Here have a calming snack.” She said, taking out a small pot with blueberries in it. Once the treat had been secured in Niko’s hands, she left the two alone.
“Did your mom just give me free food?”
Zac shrugged. “Yeah she does that.”
“No, but seriously did you make the whole trip here just for that?”
“We’ll be watching the trial too, it’s kind of an important worldwide event.” Zac replied.
“Yeah apparently.” Niko raised his eyebrows at the crowd.
“Did you have a hand in choosing the witnesses?”
Nikolas found the question odd, but answered it anyways. “Yeah Sebastien said I could.”
“Then why didn’t you call me? – Or anyone else from our school really? We could vouch for you.” Zac asked.
Nikolas snorted. “Please, I’ve punched half the people in that school. If there’s anyone I shouldn’t call, it’s the people I’ve annoyed.”
“Geez, yeah you were a bit of a jerk from time to time, but that’s nothing compared to what your dad is accusing you of being.” Zac stated, crossing his arms.
Nikolas considered his answer a little more carefully this time. “I just didn’t want to call on anyone and forcefully put them on the spotlight. Being up there isn’t fun. I wouldn’t want to ask any of my friends to suffer through that.”
“If worst comes to worst then, don’t hesitate to call on your friend here to tell them all they’re being assholes trying to save their own skin.” Zac stated with a show of his fist.
The scene almost had Nikolas doubling over in laughter. Zac could not pull off that look. “Are you the friend in this scenario?” He managed to ask without laughing.
“I thought we were trying to insinuate this on a subtle level.”
Nikolas couldn’t stop his teasing grin. “I got dumb for a few seconds, I need you to say it out loud.”
“You’re really pushing it.” Zac said, narrowing his eyes at him.
“Come on, you made the one hour drive to get here, let’s hear it.” Niko insisted.
Zac let out a loud sigh. “Geez, yeah Niko I kind of consider you my friend over here.”
“Heh! I knew it!” Nikolas exclaimed.
“You’re making such a big deal out of it.”
“It’s like I just got a promotion from annoying to friend.” Niko beamed.
“I never said you stopped being annoying.” Zac rolled his eyes with a smile. “Okay you better head back before somebody sniffs you out.”
“Yes sir!” Nikolas saluted, turning around to head back to his designated area.
Niko encountered an obstacle right before hand however.
She seemed to pop out of the plants, a lock of her hair falling out of her loose bun.
“Hi Niko!” She exclaimed with a quick wave of her hand, showcasing her tattoo. When Nikolas’ eyes caught on to the fact that she still had her tattoo – though it did seem slightly faded – she reflexively closed her hand.
“Woah Sal! You’re here too?”
“Too?” She asked with a frown.
“Yeah I just bumped into Zac.”
“Oh I haven’t seen him yet…” Salandra mumbled, her eyes finally spotting the bright red head in the crowd.
“Yeah there’s a whole bunch of people today.” Nikolas said.
“How are you holding up?” She asked, a smile filling her face.
“Actually pretty good. The trial’s kinda heavy but we’re pushing through it. I haven’t seen you in a while, how are things with you? I’m sorry I would’ve called, but-” Nikolas belted out before she interrupted him.
“No I get it, you’ve been busy.”
“It all just kind of fell on me.” Nikolas admitted with a shrug.
“Um well, I’m also pushing through it. We can leave it at that.” Salandra said.
“Zac said he was staying to watch the rest of the trial. Are you staying too?”
“Well gosh, I’m a little jealous that Zac found you first, he gets to say all the fun things first.” Salandra let out a small sigh.
“Heh, yeah I guess?” Nikolas shrugged.
“Since when have you two gotten so buddy buddy?” She asked.
“Well we’ve only quite recently attained the level of friendship. Zac’s actually pretty cool in the end.” Niko added with a smirk.
“It’s just a bit of a shock to me. Since I thought we’d agreed he was a bit of an asshole.” Salandra said.
Nikolas awkwardly rubbed his neck. “Oh well, yeah him always coming on to you is still a jerk move, but, um, I dunno – I’m also –”
Oscar cupped his hands to help his voice carry the 10 feet between him and Niko. “TIC TOC NIKO. IT’S ALMOST TIME.”
“Oh shit, I gotta go Sal, see you later!”
“I ask Evan Sepulveda to witness.” The room quieted as the first witness of the day was called. “You are one of the last people alive to have witnessed a moment of loss of control by Xavier Whitelight. Can you attest to this?”
“Yes, it happened at a harbor in Ridgevalley.” Evan began. “I had been hired to disable his father. Xavier sensed me and considered me a threat. Next thing I knew this enormous wall of fire split the building I was on in half. Thank god he didn’t have any control over it, or I would dead right now.”
Evan continued on, elaborating on what his wife, Erin, had told him about Xavier’s eventual break down and his relapses. How, this being from Xavier himself, his loss of control could’ve easily led to the death of Erin and her son, whom he was living with at the time.
Xavier waited his turn anxiously. “Evan,” He finally began, glaring in his direction. “You say you went to the harbor to disable my father, but that’s not true. You went there to kill him didn’t you? You were a hired gun.”
Evan grimaced. “Yes, that’s true.”
“How can you judge me then? I was just trying to protect my father.” Xavier countered.
“By wielding magic you had no control over. Even I hear it was unconventionally acquired? You had more magic that day that you’d ever had in your life.” Evan snapped.
The jury stopped the questioning – the method in which Xavier had obtained his magic wasn’t in question here.
Xavier called Annaliese next, to complete what he’d begun with Traz. She said much the same things, insisting that Xavier was not dangerous and that he’d attained a point in his life where his control was not to be questioned.
During his turn, Sebastien felt the need to remind everyone that the goal was not to evaluate Xavier’s control over his power, but rather the intentions behind his actions. His words missed several ears.
During break, Nikolas found himself stuck in a pacing trance, munching on the blueberries Zac’s mom had given him. Sebastien had only one witness left to call. The trial was nearing its end and he was beginning to fear it.
Sebastien rubbed his head. “I only have Tyzel left to call. I’ll have no choice but to talk about Xavier’s control more. I’ve made most of my arguments, and Tyzel doesn’t know Xavier very well.”
“Sorry I didn’t suggest more witnesses.” Nikolas said.
“That’s fine, we’ve made a pretty good case so far.” Sebastien said.
“How long will it take for the juries to decide?”
“It shouldn’t take long. They spend their breaks discussing only this. And especially towards the end of a trial, their decision should be almost made.”
Nikolas balanced on the balls of his feet. “It’s weird having the place packed. Suddenly feels a lot heavier in their room.”
“I’m anxious to have this finished as well.”
“How much time left to the break?” Nikolas asked as he found himself pacing again.
He nodded and headed straight for his room.
Turns out his sister may not have done the trip to-and-back for nothing. Hopefully playing a bit of violin could help him calm down.
He couldn’t remember the last time he’d played…must’ve been a while because he sounded rusty.
He’d only managed a few notes before a knock on his door made him jump.
“I’ll be truthful, I’m surprised.” Nikolas admitted.
“I can see that.”
“No but really, how did you get past security? Don’t say you jumped the wall, I wouldn’t believe you.”
“I teleported.” Zac said. “And a robot told me what room you were in.”
“I thought you didn’t like teleporting.” Nikolas noticed as he walked over to his bed, clear indication to Zac that he was welcome inside.
“Didn’t you hear the part about the talking robot?” Zac snorted.
“Heh, yeah that’s Oscar. I told you about him didn’t I?”
“I hadn’t actually realized it meant a talking robot.” Zac muttered.
“So why are you here?” Nikolas asked.
“Were you playing the violin just now?” Zac asked, his eyes drifting to the case on the floor.
“You play the violin?” Zac asked again, just to make sure.
“How is playing the violin weird?”
“I don’t know, it just adds like another depth to you. It’s weird.”
“Now you’re weirding me out.” Nikolas scoffed.
“I just came to say hi really. We don’t have access to the cool break room you guys do.”
“Oh shit then, come on, they have computers with a few games on them.”
“Games? Yeah I’m up for some video games.”
Last witness. Niko wrung his hands as he watched Tyzel walk up to the pedestal. No, he was watching the jury through the stained windows. Wondering what their consensus would be. They were making a decision that would affect Nikolas’ life, dramatically. He briefly wondered if he was okay with them having this much power on him.
Sebastien went through the usuals, asking Tyzel to recount the event to refresh everyone’s minds. Then he tackled Tyzel’s relation to the Talent Troupe, who were known to be composed of some of the strongest and most original supernaturals. Nobody ever considered the Talent Troupe as being a threat, and Tyzel explained that in case it was because they helped each other. They trained their powers every day to master them to perfection. It was their entire career. Xavier on the other hand had spent the majority of his young life repressing his powers, and had only received training by Annaliese, who in turn was a self-taught witch.
Xavier’s knowledge and training was limited. What was most impressive about him was simply his raw power. But without proper training, it was difficult to master and to control – especially in such high quantities. Hence, Xavier claiming he had misdone his spell. Whether his intentions were pure or not, his lack of proper training had caused some devastating effects on his son – which he had without hesitation cast a spell on knowing this.
Xavier had opted to attempt to discredit Tyzel’s words, by bringing up that the Talent Troupe had abandoned him in Ridgevalley at a young age. He hadn’t been among them for decades.
Xavier called his next witness, Erin Sepulveda.
“Erin, how long have we known each other?” Xavier asked, right off the bat.
“Since we were 7 years old.”
“They claim I’m dangerous. That I make bad decisions, that my intentions are wrong. You know me better than anyone else. Am I this person?”
“The simple answer is no. Now get ready for the long answer.” Erin declared.
“Xavier has a big heart, and he’ll do everything he can to help others. The event you all seem fond of remembering, of Edmund’s heart attack caused by Xavier’s magic seems to omit some key elements. Xavier left his family almost immediately when he figured it out. And then he spent weeks doing research to find a way to help his husband, but before that, he attempted to rid himself of his witch side – permanently – to avoid harming his natural husband any further.”
“After years of never knowing his biological father, James appeared one day out of nowhere. Not in search of creating a bond between father and son, but because he needed his son’s help to save his daughter. And Xavier? He didn’t refuse. He accepted. He doesn’t regret his choice, even though it brought an incredible amount of pain to him. He was witness to deaths – some by the hands of his own father – as well as countless other things. He was put in danger on numerous occasions – one of them involving a golden-eyed vampire controlling him. Xavier knows what it’s like, he doesn’t make his decisions lightly.”
“My parents were physically abusive for most of my childhood. I was the one who ended it in methods that could have gotten me thrown in prison at the time. Xavier put his neck on the line to help me. He’s a dear friend, the Xavier I know, wouldn’t carelessly cast such a damaging spell. If he felt it was necessary – if his sixth sense told him there was no other way to secure his son’s safety – then it was justified.”
“Are you saying Nikolas should’ve laid down and taken this abuse without complaints?” Sebastien asked, the tension clear in his tone.
“I’m saying you should trust in your father more Nikolas.” She said, this time looking at Niko. “If he did this, then your life was in desperate danger and this was the only way to help you.”
Lunch break hit and Nikolas received a surprise visit. His pa had finally decided to wander over to the break room.
“Nikolas could I speak with you for a moment?” Edmund asked. Nikolas didn’t hesitate, he practically shot to his feet.
“Hi pa, how’s it going?” Nikolas asked, sharply.
“Nobody likes this situation Niko.” Edmund said with a shake of his head.
“I never assumed anybody did.” Niko scoffed.
“You don’t need to take this tone with me.” Edmund warned.
“Really? You’re trying to lecture me on my tone right now!?”
Edmund sighed. “Nikolas, please, try to convince the cop to drop the charges.”
“Pardon me what?” This conversation was crossing all kinds of barriers.
“I know we both don’t want your father to end up in jail. Let’s finish this early and avoid complications.” Edmund continued.
“Nope, I’m going to imagine you didn’t come here just to ask me that.” Nikolas said shaking his head in amazement.
“Nikolas I’m being serious.”
“Yes I know, and that makes it worse.”
“Think about the imp-”
“LALALALALALALALA,” Nikolas cut off abruptly, turning his back to his father.
But the teen had his fingers in his ears, chanting LALALA as he walked away.
“What did he want?” Oscar asked as Nikolas came back.
“Pretty sure he tried to scold me and then order me to drop the trial.” Nikolas admitted.
“He doesn’t have the right to do that.” Sebastien stated with a frown.
“I was pretty rude to him,” Nikolas said, his gaze dropping to the ground. “To think I’m supposed to go back home after this…” Maybe he should’ve been more polite. He was just asking for more trouble for when this got resolved.
James slight smirk, became worried. ‘You’re not going back there.’ He signed at the same time Sebastien said it.
“Yes I agree.” Oscar chipped in. “We’ll go live in a computer factory instead.”
‘You can live with me.’ James signed.
“That’s a much better idea.” Sebastien nodded. “No matter what the result is here, it’s extremely not recommended for you to keep living there.”
‘You can stay with me till you find a better place.’ James insisted again.
“Woah thanks…that’s really nice.” Nikolas’ throat began to burn a bit, and he rubbed at it, but it made his eyes tear up. He hid his face with a sniffle. “Sorry, I don’t know what’s gotten into me.”
“It’s normal.” Sebastien said with a kind smile as James rubbed Nikolas’ back.
When the tears starting to flow a little more freely, James wrapped his arms around Niko, who clung to his jacket and finally let the heaviness of it all flow out.
Sebastien had run out of witnesses and Xavier had announced he had a few more he could call on. The detective hadn’t even suggested it to Nikolas – not after what had happened during lunch break – it was the teen himself who had insisted. He wanted to witness.
“I call Nikolas Whitelight to testify.” Sebastien declared. When prompted to recount the events that had transpired Nikolas refused.
“Ask me what a parent’s role is.”
“Alright then, what defines the job of a parent?” Sebastien rephrased.
“If we were to put this into basic terms, a parent has a nurture and a structure role. Feel free to correct me at any point if you believe I’m wrong.” Nikolas began in almost a tutorial tone. “A parent has to support their children through shows of affection and care. Support means encouraging them, congratulating them on what they do right, listening to their worries and taking their feelings into consideration when making decisions. Failure to provide a good support leads to children with self-esteem problems, who feel ignored, who have difficulty trusting others, feeling they can’t rely on others, and have trouble learning how to give support to others.
As for the structure role, this is where discipline comes in. This is where a parent has to teach their child right from wrong, to instil the right values, and to encourage independence. Discipline doesn’t mean a tight cage, it means guiding a child. Simply guiding so that they can learn from their own mistakes. Common assumptions are that to discipline means to impose a dominance in the relationship. And the tool often used is fear.
The roles aren’t supposed to make a parent at once bad cop and good cop. Nurture builds the relationship, structure is meant to help the child learn. If you teach them through fear, you attach a feeling of dread to simple things like doing your chores, your homework, admitting faults, and so on.”
“Now let’s apply this to my father.
Let me deal out the obvious here, that no one in my family can deny. My dads favor my sister. She was their first born, so ok sure, they’ve been with her longer. She’s a girl, I guess the whole fragile stereotype applies here. She also suffered a lot. Had a pedophile dance teacher, got her knees fractured…Yet they always let her get away with things? That’s just weird to me. I got myself beat up in an alleyway and they used that as an excuse to tighten the leash, but with my sister they use her traumas to…justify the loose? They let her sneak out of the house to go to clubs in the middle of the night where alcohol and older men were present. So yeah, I think there’s pretty obvious favoritism here. Shout if you disagree.”
“Nikolas we love you just as much as we do Nikita.” Xavier decided to cut in.
“It doesn’t really matter if you don’t show it. How am I supposed to know with such flagrant favoritism? So, let’s count that as strike one: Favoritism.” Nikolas replied.
“Next up, negligence. This falls directly in a failure to fulfill the nurture role. My parents have one hell of a schedule. My dad works during the week. He’s there to make us supper and sometimes like to force everyone to enjoy a quick board game. During the weekend, if he’s at home it’s because he’s inviting old friends over. If he’s not it’s because he’s out with pa, or niki, or out doing groceries. All pretty routine. Pa on the other hand works from home, but it’s the equivalent of not being there at all. He spends his days locked up in his study writing or talking on the phone. He’ll come out for quick breaks, sometimes asking about our lives before heading back. Now you may say, woah there Niko! These men are working to put food on your plate! Yes I know, it’s not that I’m complaining, it’s that the times I do spend with my fathers are reserved to dinners, practicing my magic and scolding me for whatever new thing I’d done wrong. They don’t seem to care about me, or what’s happening in my life. They never ask about my homework. I get good grades so they assume I’m doing well at school – which I am, but they don’t take the time to tell me they noticed. I don’t remember the last time they praised me for a good grade, or even inquired about my report card. It’s all taken for granted until the principal calls them to let them know I hit someone. Maybe I’m exaggerating, they do ask about my day from time to time…if only to check that I’m not screwing everything up again.”
“Nothing at all?” Pa asked again as Niko tried to set a new record on his video game.
“No warnings? No almosts?” Pa asked.
“Everything’s been fine at work pa.” Nikolas repeated.
“And you’d tell us if anything did happen right?” He asked.
“Why the sudden concern?”
Nikita decided to butt in our conversation. “Oh Niko, it’s only that you’ve had this job for 3 months and haven’t actually lost it yet due to you turning the place upside down that’s all.”
“They’re constantly assuming I’ll do things wrong. As if I’m just incapable of being a responsible person. After hearing that for years, eventually it starts to settle in. Maybe I am just a bother. Maybe I really should sit still and shut up and stop trying to do things well. And with that comes fear…fear of being myself and disappointing my parents. And that’s…not how it should go.
But enough about the complaints of an unhappy child, let’s get to the real juice. Dad says everything he does is to protect us? Every decision is calculated and justified? All for a cause greater than himself? Even I would be led to believe this – I was – I mean the man has incredible powers and a sixth sense to feel dangers to boot. “
“But, ha, here’s my counter argument.
I was…what 10? 12? I found a basement in our house. We aren’t supposed to have a basement, but I found a secret passage that led to it in our bathroom and stumbled on a locked door. I tried unlocking it for years, all sorts of methods you can think of. Spoiler, the last owner had put a magic lock on it, so I didn’t have much luck. Important thing to note is that I never told my fathers. I didn’t want to, because, even at a young age, I knew for sure they’d take this new find from me. They’d kick me out of the subject and keep it to themselves until they deemed it safe. So I spent years keeping it hidden. And guess what, my all powerful dad never suspected a thing. I think it’s because he wasn’t watching. Now you may think, oh it’s just a basement, he knew about it, but it wasn’t dangerous. Ha, wait till you hear what was behind it, because I did eventually get it open with some outside help.
The basement was an old torture-mad scientist place. There were all sorts of dangerous tools : guns, knives, scalpels, shovels you name it. There were questionable substances and decaying plants. Along with a dangerous creature. It’s all still there, you can go see for yourself! Even after discovering it, I managed to keep it hidden from my parents for several months. In the first few weeks, I was in clear shock because I’d been scared half to death down there. My parents did notice something wrong with me. And they scolded me for it.”
“Woah wait a second! I thought you said you weren’t going to ground me!” Nikolas exclaimed.
“We never said anything about you lying to us on prom night.” Edmund said.
“We’re not sending you there to ground you.” Xavier said. “It’ll be good for you to get out of Ridgevalley for a few weeks. A lot of things happened in the last week, and it’ll be fun.”
Well sure Nikolas discovered a monster in their basement, almost got shot at a bank robbery and his sister got run over by a car. Which is exactly why he should stay! Like he’d just up and leave when his sister needed him!
“How can somebody so high and mighty about keeping his family safe so blatantly miss something like this? I’ll tell you why. Dad says he does everything to protect his family, but…that’s false. He does everything to protect his husband. How do I know this? Because dad only started getting on my case – hard – after dad started having his heart attacks. It was always your father doesn’t need this right now, or you’re stressing your father out, like he was threatening me with pa’s death to force me to behave. And since he seems to have considered that ineffective, he’s gone to casting spells on me. Which is insulting really, since dad told us once that the worst insult his father could do would be to control him with his power.
Essentially…that’s what happened here. It’s hypocritical and the criteria for bad parent of the year is fulfilled. Congrats dad! You’ve managed to do to me, what you were afraid others would do to you. Guess that fulfills a need for control?” Nikolas let out a humorless chuckle. “That’s all I have to say.”
“That’s not all I have to say. Nikolas you are one of the most irresponsible children anyone has ever had to deal with.” Xavier declared, standing up abruptly from his seat. His handcuffs disconnected from the poles with a snap. He wasn’t supposed to be able to, but the magic trailing from his fingers was proof his power was stronger than the intense restrictions the artifacts were imposing. The crowd rustled. “You dive into trouble with any thought for the consequences. You broke into a police station because you have delusions of grandeur, thinking you – a 16 year old boy – could somehow be better equipped to deal with adult situations. I try to be lenient. I let you keep that dog of yours even after telling you several times that you couldn’t keep it. I gave you ample chances to prove yourself so I could lift your punishments. You recklessly get into fights at school over the simplest and stupidest things. I try to help you learn from my own mistakes in the past. I try to teach you to practice your magic, but you avoid me like the plague because you don’t like it.”
Xavier continued on without pause. “We can’t leave you alone in a place for fear you’ll cause chaos. Summer camp: you managed to almost lose a horse by standing on it at full gallop, and then you nearly killed yourself running on a roof. School: You’ve nearly gotten yourself expelled twice for misconduct. Last year you got caught in a bank robbery and tried to play the hero – nearly getting yourself shot! It’s like you purposefully put yourself in these positions! I warned you, I clearly warned you not to get involved with that game. I made you promise, but you went anyways! You once again put yourself in danger! Not only that, you came back and that robot was controlling you! And then, you asked us to spare it? You ask for danger. You’re borderline suicidal! It was either a spell or a straitjacket at that point.” Magic was starting to flow around Xavier as he stepped out of the third device.
One of the cops asked him to calm down and sit.
“And you! All of you!” Xavier declared, spinning to the crowd, magic flowing freely. “Claiming I’m dangerous. Trying to lock me up because I have power that scares you. I’m better than all of you. With your little fights, with your let’s blow a school of supernaturals. You haven’t seen dangerous, and DON’T YOU TRY JAMES.” Xavier shouted, turning to his father, who’d gotten up.
James had reached for his son’s mind, to try and calm him down. He could feel the resistance Xavier had suddenly gained through a warding spell he’d cast on his mind.
“This!” Xavier exclaimed, sweeping his arm across the room. The raw magic emanating from him shook the air roughly and people let out screams as cracks went up the walls. “Is ridiculous! It’s a WASTE of time.” He bellowed as the lights flickered and dust fell from the ceiling. “As if, I would let myself get jailed for protecting my family.”
Xavier narrowed his eyes. His father wasn’t attacking him. At most he could feel his movements lessened slightly, but nothing more. And though Xav’s powers were strong, he knew his father could break his mental shield if he wanted to. But he wasn’t…why?
Xavier turned to his father. “Is this a game to you?” He asked. “I thought you considered me a threat father.” Xavier hissed as he gathered a fireball of condensed magic in his hands.
James looked towards the doorway to the trial room instants before the doors swung open. A strong gust of bright wind followed their movement, wind that traveled across the room, keeping the walls strong and sturdy and extinguishing Xavier’s flames. The wind knocked Xavier off his feet.
“What a waste.” A figure clad in black and white entered, flicking a staff left and right. Everyone had jumped from their seats and hidden underneath, watching in awe at the display of magic.
Xavier forced himself to his feet and brought his hands up in a strong movement. An intense wall of magic was generated, headed straight in the staff wielder’s direction.
The newcomer muttered a few words and swung his staff at the attack, dissipating it with a slight fizzle.
“You give shame to the Whitelight heritage.” The newcomer said, waving his staff again as bindings appeared out of thin air and tightened around Xavier. He didn’t stop there, magic after restraining magic was applied to Niko’s father before he was completely wrapped, no part of him visible. “Xavier Whitelight, you will be sentenced and judged according to proper witch laws.” The man caressed the dragon perched on his shoulder, and the latter flapped his wings at the magic cocoon. After a few flaps, Xavier had disappeared from the room.
The man walked to the middle of the room and stood on the steps, before facing everyone.
“My name is Aleccas Keeper, don’t forget it.” He announced. His dragon spread its wings out again, its flaps causing both to start disappearing. “Oh and,” He managed to add with a smirk. “You’re welcome.”
End of Volume 1 Arc 6
A big thank you to Iomai for writing out Lilith’s part here!
A huge thank you to Livvielove as well! For wonderful Annie again, beefing up my audience, and for letting me morph/include Aleccas in this story 😉
WHILE I’M AT IT. Thanks to Mpart for that thing you be working on in secret (WINK WINK)
Oh and of course, thanks to all of you for reading 😀