Find your Tribe! War Games, the third episode of Paragons, continues in this third chapter.

Magic comes in many flavors. Join Savannah and the other Apprentices as they discover the six kinds of magic and meet the Knights who will lead them in their Quest to find their Tribe.

Paragons 1.3.3

Book 1  ♣  Episode 3  ♣  Chapter 3

The Apprentice Knights meet the six magic Tribes—and the mentors who will determine their fate. Chapter 3 of the Paragons Episode War Games.

Chapter 3

Governor Meyer had our undivided attention. Thirty-one of us were standing here, at the crossroads of the six castles, and not a single person made a peep. People didn’t blink. They didn’t fidget. They just waited for Governor Meyer to pass us the keys to our future.

“I know you’re all still a little shaken after yesterday’s attack at the Garden,” she said, her smile small but sympathetic. “But it is a potent reminder of the threat we are all facing. And the reason that the Castle exists.” She spread her arms, indicating the buildings all around us. “Yes, the Castle is majestic—just like its Knights—but it is also strong. And so are all of you. You were chosen for a reason. Because you are the best and bravest of your year. So stand tall, young Apprentices.” Her voice rose higher and so did we. “For soon you too shall join the honorable ranks of the Knights of Gaia!”

Governor Meyer was a master at motivating people. The General could have learned a thing or two from her. Inspiring speeches were way better than threats of expulsion.

“But first things first,” she said with a smile. “Before you can claim your destiny as Knights, you must explore the gift the spirits have given you. You must understand it, embrace it, and, ultimately, master it. It will be a long, difficult, amazing, empowering journey. Are you ready?”

“Yes!” all the Apprentices exclaimed.

Her gaze swept across us. “I know you are. Today, your journey continues, here, in this place we call the Hex.” She waved her hand to indicate the hexagonal field at the center of the connected castles. “And to guide you on your journey, I’ve brought along a few experienced heroes.”

Six Knights, each one dressed in a different color, marched through six archways, entering the Hex. They formed a line beside Governor Meyer.

“These Knights are your mentors. They will guide you in your very first Quest, a Discovery Quest. This Quest will help you start to figure out who you truly are and where you belong,” she said. “Which Tribe do you belong to? Are you a Metamorph, strong and fast, a Knight of many forms?”

The first Knight in the row stepped forward. Tall and shaped like a bodybuilder, he was dressed in a suit of gold armor. At first glance, the armor seemed to be made of metal, but when I took a closer look, I noticed that it stretched, adjusting its shape to the Knight’s movements. Whatever that material was, it was far more flexible than metal. And the boy had the telltale confident stance of a Knight, even as he took a step back to rejoin the line.

“Or are you an Elf, charming and diplomatic?” Governor Meyer asked.

The second Knight stepped forward. Like the first, she wore armor, but hers was purple. And instead of a helmet, she wore a crown. The headband-like circlet was set across her forehead, made from many silver pieces braided around one another. Her eyes sparkled like amethysts, and her long hair was the color of sunshine. It was styled into a high, swooshing ponytail. Her makeup looked like it had been painted by a master artist.

“Could you be a Nymph, lord of the elements and friend to Mother Nature?” the Governor said, and the Elf moved back as the Knight in green armor stepped forward. “Can you soothe storms and quell quakes? Do you speak to animals and plants?”

The Nymph had a kind smile, bright green eyes, and strawberry-blonde hair twisted into two tight braids. The light, subtle freckles on her cheeks almost blended with her skin. She gave the crowd a friendly wave before returning to the line.

“You might be an Alchemist, a master craftsman with the power to forge magical objects and brew powerful potions.”

The Alchemist Knight had added an accessory to his orange armor: a very large leather utility belt, filled with all kinds of tools. I didn’t recognize most of those tools. Which meant they were probably magical.

“Are you a Sorcerer, a writer of runes and master of mysterious magic?” the Governor asked us.

The third female Knight—a tall girl with skin as dark as midnight, hair as silver as starlight, and armor as red as blood—stepped forward. Her gold gaze panned across the crowd, then she stepped back into line again.

“Or are you a Dreamweaver, someone who bridges the gap between dreams and consciousness, between body and spirit, and between our realm and all others?”

The final Knight peeled away from the line. He wore a sparkling necklace around his neck, over his blue armor. The chain was gold and long, and a small glass orb dangled from the end of it. He swept into a graceful bow, then returned to the other Knights.

“You will find your Tribe soon enough,” the Governor told us. “And your mentors will show you the way. Good luck in your Discovery Quests.”

Melanie Meyer gave us a parting wave, then walked out of the Hex. Ms. Featherdale, one of our two Program Managers from yesterday, took the Governor’s spot beside the Knights. She was dressed just like yesterday, entirely in white. She held a tiny remote controller in her hand.

I didn’t see Ms. Pirana anywhere. Good. I hoped she’d called in sick today. That woman was just plain mean.

“Good morning, Apprentices.” Ms. Featherdale’s hands were shaking so hard, she nearly dropped the remote. “In a moment, I will update the Scoreboard to reflect the results of your Assessment at the Garden yesterday.”

She gestured toward the big ugly Scoreboard at the center of the Hex, the monstrosity I’d been trying really hard to ignore. It towered above us like a demon, casting a long and ominous shadow over our futures.

“Until then, I have some sad news.” She sniffled. “As some of you may have heard, our dear Ms. Pirana…at first, they thought she was only wounded in the attack on the Garden yesterday, but…” She hiccuped. “…but one of the Cursed Ones bit her. She is one of the Cursed now.”

Low mutters rippled across the crowd. I could only stare in shock. Ms. Pirana was cursed.

And now I felt really bad for wishing she’d called in sick today. Sure, she was mean, but she didn’t deserve the Curse. No one deserved that.

“Nothing can be done for poor Ms. Pirana anymore,” Ms. Fellows said with a thick voice. “But she would want you to march on and become Knights, so you can fight to save others from sharing in her fate.”

Ms. Featherdale clicked her remote, and thirty-one names appeared on the Scoreboard’s screen. I gasped.

Copyright © Ella Summers

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