At age eleven, Meino buried his dad next to where they had buried his mom less than six months earlier. All alone in the world, he seeks out the Gargoyles and uses his dad’s spell book to bring one to life. But he doesn’t understand the magic he’s using, and he can’t finish the spell. For the next twelve years, his dreams are haunted by the lonely cries of the Gargoyle. As an adult, Meino tries the spell again to get rid of the nightmares. This time it works—but once the magic is alive, it attracts the attention of the New Knight Templars, who want to destroy the Gargoyle.
Nathan and Lucien have settled into a routine at the school where Nathan is studying to be able to help the Order. Just as life is calming down, it all takes a turn. News that a protégé is in danger and that Nathan’s beloved Professor Nigel Gershman has died is just the beginning. Once again, Nathan and Lucien are moved about to assist the Order, and new magic brings out a hidden enemy.
Coming up on November, Nathan enjoyed the fact that he could share breakfast with Lucien. Lucien would bring them food from somewhere in the world while Nathan got ready for class. It was almost eight in the morning before Lucien would be swallowed up by shadow, and Nathan hated not having the last minutes with him, as class would start before that. But they made the best of their mornings. Daylight time would end soon, and he’d be walking himself to school. But not the first morning after the week-long break. They had another week together eating breakfast.
“What are you smiling at, mon coeur?”
Nathan looked up from his efforts at buttering a bread roll. “I was smiling at the fact that you can walk me to class for the whole week before daylight time ends.”
Lucien smiled and bit into his own bread.
“And I was wondering whether we should go prowl a bookstore this weekend.”
Lucien brushed crumbs from his fingers and looked at the books stacked next to the bed. “You don’t think you have your hands full so far?”
“I meant for you.”
“Yeah, but we usually read together, and even I, who can’t sleep, am close to nodding off to some of those.” Lucien pointed at the stacks by the bed.
Nathan grimaced. “Let’s just hope Ms. Powell doesn’t come up with anything more boring than the Greek vase pictures.”
Lucien scoffed, biting into his food.
“And we’re almost done with that series you found,” Nathan continued, motioning to the book on the nightstand.
“No, we’re not. There’s one more on the shelf.”
Nathan looked, finding the red one. “Fantastic.” That would be the third of Lucien’s chosen series they’d finish, and Nathan had to admit he had revised his opinion on fictional genres.
“But I still want to go out this weekend.”
“Even better.” Nathan smiled. “You could prowl for a good place while I’m bored enough to drool in the books the first two periods.”
“My Latin is quite a bit better than the rest of the classes, thanks to you.”
“Perfect, then read the Greek vase thing in class instead of here.”
“I’ll be drooling in that book for sure, but you’re right, it’s better than having to spend my time with you nodding off.”
“Either that or I should stop practicing Latin with you—”
Nathan pointed at Lucien. “Don’t you dare.”
Lucien grinned. “As you wish. I’ll prowl for a restaurant or something.”
“Oh, by the way, would you drop off a letter for Mr. Severin?”
“Sure. Coffee in the school dining hall first?”
“Absolutely.” Nathan found the letter on the dresser and gave it to Lucien, who put it in the bag to be attached to his chain. They then helped each other clear the table before Nathan shouldered his backpack.
Entering the dining hall right after a break gave the huge room a completely different ambiance. The noise level was about the same, but people were in a different mood than on any other Monday. Nathan and Lucien got coffee and sat at their usual table, already occupied by the usual students. They, too, had stories from their break—some more lively than others. One guy was always so far behind his reading that Nathan figured he wouldn’t finish the first year of school. Not even the break had allowed him to catch up sufficiently, and he too had broken his neck on the Greek vases.
“Oh, my God, look at that guy,” Simon, the guy sitting next to Nathan, said and got up. “Hey, Rhoden, nice face!”
“Jesus H. Christ, that guy ran into more than one fist,” Nathan said, gaping at the walking bruise, who merely smiled tentatively and continued through the dining hall.
Lucien turned to look and shook his head. “Those bruises are at least a week old.”
“I got into a brawl at the pub this past week, but mine’s healed long ago,” Simon said, motioning to his face as if to make a point.
“How hard did the guy hit?” Lucien asked.
“Not as hard as whoever laid into Alex Rhoden, but hard enough to ruin my night and my taste for the next beer, that’s for sure.”
Nathan scoffed, shaking his head.
“I gotta go.” Lucien stood and leaned across the table for a kiss. “See you tonight.”
“And don’t drool in the Latin books.”
Nathan slapped a hand across his eyes, grinning.
“That’s right, I need your help with Latin,” Simon said. “If you can fall asleep and ace a test, then you’ve gotta be good at it!”
“Ace?” Nathan asked, only half paying attention while waving Lucien off.
“Yeah, the scores are up. You got ninety-three.”
“Great. What did you score?”
“Forty-two! The lowest in the class!”
“I got thirty-eight,” said the one always falling behind. He was a newcomer to their table, and Nathan felt like an ass for not even bothering to learn the guy’s name. “You got top mark, didn’t you?”
“I... don’t know.”
“No, he didn’t. That girl Rebecca over there.” Simon pointed to a girl talking to the walking bruise. “She and her brother Tavi got ninety-nine and a hundred.”
“Impressive,” Nathan mumbled and rose from the table along with the others. On their way to class, they stopped by the scoreboard. Other than a Latin test, Nathan had also taken a test in recognizing ancient alphabets. “Yes!”
“What?” Simon shrieked in surprise at Nathan’s outburst. He then looked at the board. “You happy to be fourth?”
“No, I’m happy about getting a hundred in that test.” Nathan pointed.
“Oh, so that’s why you’re good at Latin?”
Nathan shrugged and followed the others into the classroom. Opening his backpack, he saw that Lucien had stuffed the Greek vase book into it. Smiling, he picked it up and placed it on the table.