A large fireball hung in the air, bright in the murky gloom of the small stone room. A strand of it fell, like rope, and fell onto the boy’s outstretched hand. The boy whispered, and it expanded, and twisted round the child’s small hand.
Two Nissá looked on, faces showing no hint of reaction. For a moment, all three were motionless, as if captured together as a still image. Then one of the Nissá spoke:
Do you think you could do that using your Water abilities?”The child nodded, nervously. He waved his flame-free hand over its partner, and the fire died down. Slowly a trickle of water started to flow from the open palm, flowing from nowhere, going to nowhere. The flow seemed to cling to the hand, covering it like the flame did.
“Very good child. No, can we see you manipulate the Wind?”
Nodding nervously again, the boy flicked both of his hands. A rushing sound filled the small room. The boys long, flowing hair started to spin around his head – testament to the powere of the wind that he had created.
“And, finally, can we see you use the Earth?”
The child didn’t even nod this time. He knelt on both knees, and waved his hands over the cold, hard stone that covered the floor. Slowly, ripples began to form, until the stones were moving as though they were made from water. The boy looked up hopefully at his two examiners.
“Very good,” The Nissá smiled. He gestured towards the door, and the boy obediantly moved off into the outer courtyard.
The two examining Níssa had gone through to the main school hub. Lessons had restarted after the exams, and now the hall was silent. It was vast – the beams that supported the enourmous roof had had to be cut from the largest trees in the land. It was a masterpiece of engineering, design, and it was the home of the Níssa of Gúrran.
The Níssa were a race of mages who believed in the trinity of the world. They viewed life as the middle of the Triad of life – preceded by absolute evil, and succeeded by absolute goodness. As a peoples, they were generally tall, dark-skinned, and quiet. They rarely traveled out of their cities, and, were it not for the bravery of a small few, would have thought that they were totally alone in the world. As such, they had limited contact with the tribe of Erelings in the forest that bordered one of the larger Níssan cities. The two peoples would meet, once every four of five years, to discuss the state of their respective homelands. These discussions were mostly for show, as neither party had any particular interest in the other. It was just a tradition.