“You are not like my other children, Bryn Skuldsdóttir. You have the heart of a Midgardian, but the spirit and drive of Asgard. I would more of our people felt as you do, that Midgard is a place to know and to love, not just to act.” He pushed back my hair and smiled, an action that reached even behind the eye patch.
Harry opened his eyes again. “Someone mention me?”
“No, dude,” said Merlin. “We were talking about that kid Larry down the street.”
“Hey, Merl,” Harry said as we came in sight. “Don’t go freeing any more dragons while I’m gone, okay?”
“I think we’re fresh out of dragons,” Merlin said, his smile stronger for Harry’s good humor.
“Do you think one day we’ll die while color coding?” asked Dénsmore. The other two stopped and stared at her for a moment, Darity’s white tresses going straighter than usual, if it was possible. “I’m just saying,” Dénsmore continued. “Of all the things to be doing when you die. Color coding?” Her sisters returned to their sorting. “Dude, the least you can do is laugh when I try to lighten the mood. You two haven’t been this solemn since that whole Macbeth incident.”
“Hey, I was all for leaving the guy alone and just letting Banquo hear his fortune,” said D’Artangan. “Darity was the one who insisted on telling them both.”
I sighed and tried not to encourage Spork’s growing desire to make the desk and all its contents float above Roth’s head.
Practical jokes and potential maiming of a teacher won’t accomplish anything, I said.
It’ll get us out of this lecture, she replied. Besides, I wouldn’t maim him. Just give him a coronary when it dropped to the ground behind him.
That’s hardly a better option.
“Are you familiar with the concept of coupled reactions?” he asked the golem. “It’s a fascinating idea the mortal scientists have looked into. If I have a reaction that is unfavorable, unlikely to happen on its own, I simply cause a smaller reaction to occur. That smaller, more favorable reaction then causes my initial reaction to take place. For example, I wish to destroy the Order, but their strength is unknown to me. However, if I cut off the school from the outside world, keeping one of their precious charges inside, they will have no choice but to reveal themselves in all their strength. And when they do, I can destroy them in one motion. So you see, it’s quite simple. We cut ourselves off to draw them out. There are enough golems left on the outside to root out any who do not enter when the time comes. The rest will remain here, to deal with the dangers that are about to come. Do you understand now?”
“No, master,” said the golem, “but I follow you, so I do not need to understand.”