The Library

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  • Published: 27 Feb 2018
  • Updated: 27 Feb 2018
  • Status: Complete
The Great Library is over a thousand years old and has grown to the size of a city.

Jack is the youngest son of Master Carter, a member of the Council of Scholars.
Emily is an orphan without a penny to her name.
Both are Acolytes in the Great Library.

When a revered Master burns a book – a crime punishable by death – Jack and Emily are thrust into a world below the Library that they never knew existed. But even as they learn life changing secrets and work together to uncover the truth, their friendship is tested in ways they never imagined.

In the Library, knowledge is power and the powerful control it.


9. Magic

Scholar Young was waiting for in the Tunnels for the two Acolytes that had barged into his life. His eyes were wearier than ever, on the verge of sleep and his white hair was wild. After the argument a few days ago, Jack had been working harder than ever to uncover the mystery that surrounded them. He seemed to be there at all times of the day and night – Young didn’t know how he was getting away with it. The two children burst through the door, bringing with them the noise and chaos that stuck to them like glue.

“Emily with me, we need to talk. Jack, do what you need to do,” said Scholar Young. Emily always needed ‘to talk’ with Scholar Young. Jack felt left out when this happened. He went and slumped down in a wet crumbly corner of the section of the Tunnels they were in. He pulled out Magic: How to Harness It; and started reading.

As he read, he heard snippets of what Emily and Scholar were saying.

“… Carter… Powder of Skettle… tea… murder… medicine…take control… Library… Rengyr…”

“But… Jack… doubts… book of magic… dangerous…”

Jack continued to read.


Chapter 3 – Simple Uses of Magic

Magic is raw power. It can only be used by the gifted few. It is believed that only the Gods can use magic. This was proved wrong when long – forgotten Scholar Chapman was the first Scholar to use magic.

He found that you have to have peace of mind and total concentration. There is a simple type of leaf, which is able to find an easy way to achieve this. Starlight’s Peace, however, is not essential; it only gets the job done for you quicker.

Chew on one and wait until your mind is clear.


Jack flicked the page and an envelope fell out with the words ‘Starlight’s Peace’ scrawled on the front. It had not been opened. He slit it open with his finger, dust falling off in few, quick waves.  

Jack groped his hand inside, and pulled out a leaf, in the shape of a five-point star, with no stem, and completely white. He popped it into his mouth. He found the page he was on, chewing absentmindedly.


This simple sentence will help you focus your mind and set a candle alight:

Fire, fire, burning bright, Iezan give me candlelight.


 “Er, guys? Do either of you know what this word means? It looks familiar?

“What is it?” asked Scholar Young.

All of sudden, Jack’s mind cleared, just like that. The sounds of the library drowned out.

“Like in a spell of sorts. Like this: Fire, fire, burning bright, Iezan give me candlelight.”  

And Jack felt a stirring in his stomach. It rose up inside him, forcing him to act. He pushed his left hand forward and… the candle near where Young and Emily were talking, exploded, setting fire to the scroll next to Emily.

For a second, everyone just stood still. Shocked. Then, without hesitation, Scholar Young ran to another desk nearby, with a jug full of water on top. He grabbed the jug and practically threw the water over the rapidly growing flames, quickly dowsing it from spreading. However, the scroll was damaged beyond repair.

“That was close,” said Jack, still chewing the leaf.

Scholar Young and Emily stared at him.

“Jack, read those words again for me.” Scholar Young asked.

“Fire, fire, burning bright, Iezan give me candlelight.” Jack pushed again. The candle on the opposite side of the room, exploded. “I didn’t do that,” he said, raising his hands, “The candle tipped over and set the scroll alight.”

“No, Jack,” Scholar Young laughed incredulously. “You did it. You used that book and used magic. Jack, you can do magic. Try this spell, Jack,” He demanded.  Jack, feeling a bit silly, looked at the text. He stood up and muttered the new words. Suddenly the entire room lit up with a golden light. In shock, he stopped muttering the words. He could now see that Emily had fallen in surprise and was sprawled on the rough floor; Scholar Young was smiling proudly at him. “Emily, your turn, just repeat what Jack said.”

Let me see in the darkness, may Iezan shine from thee.” But when Emily spoke, nothing happened.  Emily tried again and again but all she achieved was a sore throat. Emily was upset, why could Jack do magic and not her? She ran out of the Tunnels not caring if she was seen.

Jack found Emily in the Stargazing Room, hidden behind a large pile of broken telescopes, sobbing. He walked over and sat down next to her.

“Hey, are you okay?” he asked.

“W-what do you think? Of c-course, I’m n-not. I can’t d-do any m-magic and you c-can.”

“Yeah, well, it’s not that fun really, I mean I broke the first sacred law. Wait, no, I didn’t. The candle did it.” Emily stifled a laugh. Jack always helped her when she was upset, which if she said so herself, did not happen very often.

“But why can’t I do anything? What is wrong with me?”

“Nothing, I sort of cheated. While I was reading the book, there was an envelope with ‘Starlight’s Peace’ leaves, which cleared my mind while I chewed on one. It was really the only reason I could make the candle explode.”

“W-well that’s hardly fair.”

“I could help you to do a spell. If you wanted to, I’ve got the book here,” he took the book out from behind his back. “Just pick which one you want to do.”


Emily flicked through the pages. Quite a few spells she wanted to try out, but most of them ended up with Jack turning into something.

There were lots of other spells as well:

How to Turn a Frog into a Goat Turn liquid into pure water Construct a ball of light


“Can I do this one?” she pointed to the energy spell. It would be cool if she could throw a ball of light at someone. Jack gave her a star-shaped leaf with no stem.

“Chew it and focus. Concentrate and say the spell.” Emily cupped her hands in front of her, and imagined a sphere of light in them. She took a deep breath, calming herself down. Then she whispered, “Light above and fire below, Iezan show me your power, glow.”

Wisps of white light streamed from her hands, curling round and round, forming a sphere.  The entire room lit up, blinding Emily. She quickly shut her hands, extinguishing the light. Tears were still streaming down her cheeks, but they were no longer sad.

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