Dorian’s office was in the Academy office space not HQ. Alex wasn’t thrilled about being anywhere near the big wigs of the Venatori and he relaxed when I told him, only big wigs around have anything to do with teaching little Venatori how to be big Venatori. Which honestly isn’t much better, but they can’t send Alex to the brig or anything more than the Headmasters office. And since people knew me there that was unlikely, they’d just send me to Dorian and I’d get my ass chewed there. That’s how it has always worked.
Dorian was sitting at his desk tapping away at his retro old school big ass tube computer like it was the fucking 80s. My phone was more powerful than the thing on his desk, but that was the technology here in the AU building. Though most of it ran on magic. Magic Venatori didn’t possess but hired out for. It was all well and good till the supernatural bolted on you. We had no hackers, but we had some tech savvy teenagers come on up, and they had some techonopath abilities. It was finally a trait they were breeding into our existence. It had never mattered before. My nephew Nate was one of the first full fledged technopaths. Which was why he worked in IT at such a young age.
Alex stood there staring. “Holy fucking flashback batman.”
Dorian looked up and frowned, “Join the back of the line Mr. Kennedy. Nox and his friends have all had their laughs.” He smiled. “I’m glad to see you are both here, I was beginning to wonder what had pulled you away.” He raised an eyebrow when I opened my mouth to interrupt, “And I don’t need to details of your delay. I’d appreciate I never know those details.”
“But you love them so very much.” I whined, as I pulled Alex into the office and shut the door behind him. We sat down across from Dorian and he was rolling his blue eyes at me as if that were something new.
“Where do you want to start, Nox?” Dorian asked.
“In the middle.”
“Why do I bother. Mr. Kennedy do you have a preference?”
Alex looked up from his phone, “I’m only here to meet his kids.”
Dorian chuckled, “All in good time.”
“I have a number of things to discuss with the childish one.”
Alex shrugged, “I’m with him.”
I snickered and squeezed his hand and he rolled his eyes but never looked up from his phone. “Start with Matt.”
“Mr. Davenport.” Dorian nodded. “He is a null, as I’m sure you are aware. He’s nearing his final Magnus test of this year and he’s failed every one. Dae’lin’s working with him now but you know how she gets when you fail and Mr. Davenport does not respond well to the rigidity as you did. She’s at her wits end and so am I.”
“He’s a null, he’s never going to pass the test.”
“And that’s why I’m enlisting you. No one can teach him to use his power, much like no one could teach you. Maybe the two of you can fumble through it, hit on some unseen pattern for the boy not to become tacet.” Dorian sighed, “He’s a bright boy. Top of his class, reminds me of you except without the attitude.”
Alex snickered. And then he looked up, “What’s a tacet? I’ve heard it too many times today not to ask.”
Dorian started before I could. “Tacet a Magnus who has had their magical ability removed so they do not cause harm.”
“In other words it’s a lobotomy and the person is never the same.” I added. “I’ll work with him, but I’m going to need access to the tests before hand.”
“When you return to duty I will have the Adept set placed in a testing room for the two of you to figure something out.
“What’s this test like?” Alex asked.
“A puzzle box you have to solve with the elements.”
“Nox has the fastest recorded time for any of the five tests.” Dorian bragged. “Though I know of two very young ones who are nearing that time in practice.”
“So on to my kids. Michaela told you? How are they doing? do they know?”
Dorian shook his head. “They do not. We discussed this. I wanted you here before I told them.”
“We’ll tell them.” I said.
Dorian nodded. “The children are doing well. Ms. Donovan is reminds me of her mother and her attitude is the splicing of the she-devil Michaela could be and you. Mr. Donov… I mean, Mr. Sétanta, is not. He’s currently in the infirmary because of a bad night. His roommates say he woke up screaming and crying. No one’s really been able to figure it out. When he came to us Michaela said he’d been having nightmares.”
“You know my dad’s a procog and my power is a variation of that – seeing the patterns and puzzles. Did you test him for it?”
Dorian shook his head, “He’s far too young to be manifesting things he can interpret beyond it scared him. And I haven’t been to see him today to ask him about it.”
“He needs to see Margo.”
Dorian stared at me in shock. “I didn’t expect you to say that.”
“She understands the child psyche better than anyone I know. She reached me when no one else could.”
Dorian nodded. “And I assume they will be residing with you until they are of age.”
I gave Dorian a look and he nodded. “It will be arranged, they are yours. I will have the paperwork sent to the dormitories immediately.”
“And the last order of business,” I said. Dorian frowned. “I want to speak with Garrett.”
“I can’t logically stop you. I appreciate you asking and going through the steps.”
“I don’t like disobeying you Dorian,” I said softly.
“I know. You won’t. I will send you his room number and when dusk arrives, the son of the hound is welcome in this facility.”
“He’s been here before.”
Dorian nodded, “Officially this is his first time. I’d appreciate it if he came through the front doors.”
Alex laughed, “None of that shadow foolery you hear.”
Dorian rolled his eyes and pulled two pieces of paper from his desk. “Permission slips for the children to leave with you straight away.” He stood up and offered his hand to Alex. “As always, Mr. Kennedy, a pleasure to see you.”
“Ditto, Dorian. Drop the formalities.” He smiled, “We are almost family.”
The words made me smile. Dorian offered me the same and I took his hand with a simple shake. Dorian was never a hugger. “And Nox, if things go well with Mr. Davenport, I’d like you to teach a certain class of little ones.”
A fax scrolled out of the printer and Dorian picked it up. “Ironic. The young dragon is cleared. Golden clan deems the boy, Last Phoenix to be branded upon his eighteen birthday if he so chooses.”
“The Last Phoenix?”
Dorian smiled, “Your clan. The Dragons are calling you The Phoenix. Rising one, rising star. Reborn into this world. Or so Margo informs me it translates to.”
Dorian handed me the fax. “Enjoy your growing family.”