Morgana suspected that this Chantry had heard more oaths and shouting in the past ten minutes than it had heard in all the centuries of its existence.

“I cannot believe that you can permit the presence of such demon-spawn in our sacred Chantry, Father Mitchell!” shouted the leader of the guard detail, an ascetic-looking man wearing silver robes marked with arcane symbols of the Tradition.

Ignoring the controversy, Morgana sat down on a nearby chair and concentrated on regenerating the wound she took from the Marauder’s attack. The wounds on her arm slowly closed, and she shuddered at the large blood price it cost her.

“This ‘demon-spawn’ endangered her own existence to succor a prospective member of this Tradition, Michael,” responded Father Mitchell, the thunder of his voice easily overcoming Michael’s. He stood before Michael like an Old Testament prophet, his silver-grey beard and hair lending him an air of absolute authority. “She has more than earned the right to be here.

“And if anyone so much as considers harming her either by action or inaction, I will personally perform the ceremony of Gilgul upon them and cast them out of the Tradition.”

He paused, staring at the others. “She is my guest, and will be treated as such,” he continued, softly but finally.

A dead silence followed, combined with Michael’s sullen but defeated glare. Father Mitchell smiled in grim triumph and nodded to Morgana. “If you will awaken our Initiate here, Michelle, we can begin the Initiation.”

Morgana approached Carolyn sitting in a comfortable chair, brushed the hair back from her face, and said softly, almost tenderly, “Open your eyes, Carolyn.”

Carolyn’s eyes fluttered open, staring blankly ahead, and Morgana stared deep into her entranced eyes and whispered “Awaken, and remember.”

Carolyn’s blank expression was suddenly replaced with one of extreme confusion and shock. She stared in wonder at Morgana as the flood of suppressed memories seemed to pass by her eyes, and Morgana smiled in affirmation. Morgana then nodded to Father Mitchell, who knelt beside Carolyn and began to explain.

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