Circle magic? No.
Platemancy? Hell no.
Ugilsaar groaned and pulled at his ears in irritation. This new magic of his needed a name! He paused as he heard something, and his mouth dropped slightly open as he closed his eyes to listen. His face slowly followed the sound until it was right outside his study door. His brows furrowed.
Someone or something uninvited was outside his door! Rapidly, he shoved his notes into a chest and sat on it, just in time for the door’s handle to turn. He paused as he saw several missed notes fall to the floor about him, and one sheet of paper fell onto his head.
The door opened, and as Ugilsaar recognized his sponsor, he grinned. “Ehanleal!” He jumped up and darted over. “I’ve made progress! You’ll be so exci-” he cut off. Ehanleal’s expression was grim and stern. “Is something wrong?”
“Yes. You’re fired.” His harsh tone felt like a whip; Ugilsaar recoiled.
“What?” His voice broke, and his eyes darted around. “Why?”
“Because the year is up, and you have completed nothing. Pack your things quickly. You need to be out by noon tomorrow, or I will burn anything left in here.” His tone was nothing like the warm, kind man Ugilsaar met when he first arrived.
“I have something! I just need to finish it!”
“You knew the deadline.”
“That is enough. Pack your things and get out. You had your chance, and you wasted it. Pack, and I will send an oaf to haul your things. Take too long, and you can enjoy the sticky sensation of oaf snot on your luggage.” Ehanleal scowled and walked out. He slammed the door and his footsteps walked away.
The young elf, just recently emerged into adulthood, backed up into a nearby table and sank to the floor. He gripped his ears and began to wring them as he stared at the door. Desperately, he hoped Ehanleal would return and tell him it was all a terrible joke. More and more, he wrung and twisted his ears until they ached and reddened. The approaching footsteps of an oaf pulled him from his reverie, and he quickly began to pack all of his study materials, notes and everything into the chest.
In a fit of pettiness, he shoved several lab-owned supplies in as well, and finally, his bedroll and his two spare outfits, along with the lab’s safety gear. He had to sit on the wooden thing to close it, but he was satisfied. Everything in one container!
For a few moments, he pondered names again.
Pancake magic? Definitely not.
Flatspellery? That was better, but not it.
The oaf grunted at the door, and for a moment, Ugilsaar had to try hard to recall why there was an oaf at his door before he remembered and dragged his heavy trunk over. It was lot heavier than he recalled it being when he arrived. He shoved open the door and grunted. “Carry this downstairs. I’ll lead,” he instructed with a firm nod. “Come.”
The oaf followed, and as Ugilsaar led the way, he thought more about names.
Coin magic? That sounded like crummy sleight-of-hand.
Cookie magic? He wasn’t writing a cookbook!
His new magic was based on flinging flat circles around, and channeling energies into such shapes.
Shieldmancy? That didn’t sound good, and there were many offensive capabilities.
Lid sorcery? That was silly!
Hoop? Loop? One of those with some magical word at the end? No, no, no!
He sighed as he exited, and then pointed to the waiting carriage of his family.
Wait, when did they arrive? Once his load was shoved in, he climbed in. “How did you hear before I did?” His mouth was a circle of shock.
“We paid attention to your letters. You never mentioned anything big, so we knew you would need a ride.” His mother was always so painfully blunt.
He stared off into his lap as he remembered the first time she was so coldly truthful. He was a youth, playing in a pond near his family’s home. Everyone was there, from tiny baby Ilahuen to his eldest brother, Bahaot. His father was even present.
Bahaot and beautiful Sasageen were playing disc throw together. Ilahuen and rowdy little Erahuas were playing in the sand together under their mother’s watchful eye. Usilgaar and the three siblings nearest his age– twins Olereec and Oleraen, and Taltanh were playing in the shallow water together.
Usilgaar recalled catching a frog and carrying it in a tight grip to his mother to show her. She looked at it. “You are about to kill it, Usilgaar. Let it go immediately.”
“But it’ll get away.”
“You’re going to make it pop.”
“It’s already dead. Look, see? It isn’t breathing.” She pointed to its chest, and the boy loosened his grip to turn it over. It was still and silent, and its chest didn’t move.
He dropped it in horror.
Usilgaar forced his mind back to the present as the carriage came to a stop in front of the lavish home his family shared. He looked up the hill with dread.
His family didn’t have an oaf.
“Father, would you please help me carry my trunk? I will take the heavy end. I merely need help keeping it above the ground.”
Usilgaar’s father glanced back at him. “I suppose I could help. You must be stressed after a day like this.”
The young man nodded. “Yes, Father. It’s been very eventful.”
His father offered a half-smile of consolation, and let his son pull the chest from the back, and then the pair lifted it from the ground in tandem and carried it together. Usilgaar took the rear, and his father took the front and guided his son.
Along the way, Usilgaar’s mind wandered back to the memory of the pond. Something was there, something he needed. He couldn’t place it, and instead continued upward, his mind on the task at hand. His legs were weak from so long cooped up, and his arms felt like undercooked noodles when the pair placed the trunk at the end of his bed.
“Thank you, Father. Your help was vital.”
The older man nodded and extended a hand. “Day after tomorrow, we shall go running. You have spent too long away from the sun. Perhaps you can practice discus-throwing with Sasageen later.”
There it was! Discumancy! He grabbed his father’s cheeks and kissed the man. “That’s it, Father! You’ve just named what I was working on!” He began to laugh. “I will run with you and play with Sasageen, and I will continue my research in a more healthy way. Thank you, Father!” He darted away with a whoop.
His father was left blinking and stunned, back in the young man’s bedroom.