Morning found Tobias canceling a simple weather shield spell, that kept off the moderate rain, as he entered Wulfstan. The red brick building was darkened by the water running down its sides from gutters that had started overflowing an hour before. He ignored the familiar corridors as he strode toward the empty classroom that the Headmaster had set aside.
There were already two occupants when he opened the door. Both stood up near the front of the room, a few feet from the instructor’s lectern. A momentary glance identified the room as one of the small lecture rooms, better for this purpose than one of the craft rooms. There wouldn’t be any heavy equipment in the way. Tobias’s eyes went back to the pair at the front. Both were about his age, as most of the junior faculty were. The woman had dark hair in a braid that ended around her waist. She was trim in build, but buried in layers of brightly colored skirts and blouses. Even at the closing distance, Tobias noted the green and black stains about her finger tips that indicated an herbalist and alchemist. Oifa Salovich, he recalled, trained at the Henge, a self-described neo-druid. She looked more like a neo-hippie than his mental picture of druids. The man next to her was her complete opposite. Clad in blacks and dull grays contrasting with her rainbow, his light hair was cut short, almost in a buzz cut. He had the slim, strong build of a professional athlete. Even within the confines of the Tower, and Wulfstan, Tobias spotted at least two dagger hilts and the ray-skin wrapped long hilt of a short, he thought Asian, sword. Gavin Marker, the relatively new combat arts instructor, he thought, their protector. He had no idea where the man had trained in sorcery, or swordsmanship.
Both turned toward him by the time he was halfway across the room.
Tobias held up a hand to forestall the expected questions.
“Let’s wait until Master Riallo gets here,” he said, “I’d rather only explain things once, if that’s alright?”
Salovich nodded and found a chair that she folded into without a word. Marker seemed about to speak, then thought better of it. He took a position between the lectern and the wall, seemingly both relaxed and alert.
They only had to wait a couple minutes before another woman joined them.
Tobias nodded to himself, Shannon Riallo was the member of the group that he knew best. She’d started as a wizard, like him, and they’d both attended the Tower, although she was two years ahead of him. Even though she had been out of the Order of Hermes for a decade or more, she maintained the control and appearance they instilled. Her light brown hair was, as usual, done in a tight bun. Unlike many faculty, she also favored suits, this time a slate grey with thin pinstripes under a set of white robes than managed to give the impression of being a lab coat instead. Tobias guessed that she had a collection of gemstones that would outclass a modest jeweler on her person, probably at least three hidden away for every one she displayed.
He flashed the newcomer a small, familiar smile, before clapping his hands once.
“Ok,” Tobias said, turning to take in the entire trio, “Now that we’re all here, I’ll try to shed some light on what the Headmaster wants, as little as I can right now.” He proceeded to related the messenger’s arrival and their meeting with the Headmaster. “For his own reasons, the Headmaster has decided to accept the Coven’s and Rover’s request. He wanted a small team, and you’re it, to cover as much as possible, since we have no idea what sort of anomaly this is.” He shrugged, adding his own mental assessment of the messenger who didn’t get necessary details. Maybe the Coven wasn’t ready to say much, they were secretive where other factions were concerned.