The evening had gone well. Everyone seemed to love the Index and was having fun interacting with it. Juniper had relaxed with a glass of champagne by the door. UA was mingling but now started towards her. Behind her followed the Professors, Adamus and Kuthumi.
“The Professors have some questions for you, Juniper,” UA said as she reached her side, turning to stand next to her facing the Professors.
“First of all, very well done,” Prof Adamus started, “I think you did a fine job of curating 44 SHOUD essences. Now, let’s see what you learnt from the experience. Tell us, what a SHOUD is. And not the definition please, feel into it.”
Juniper swallowed hard, straightening up and trying not to get stressed at the question. I know the answer to this, she thought.
“Every SHOUD is a magic spell,” she started slowly, then paused.
“It is set to react to the individual interacting with it.” Juniper took another breath collecting her next though.
“It meets the Shaumbra, where they are. I am here, and so the SHOUD is here also. It comes to you. So in effect, each Shaumbra hears a different SHOUD with each listening.”
Juniper stopped in amazement at the scope of it, “The energies of each SHOUD is encoded to react to each individual Shaumbra in the now moment that they are interacting with it. Delivering an individual message directly to that Shaumbra. Which means, if that particular Shaumbra were to interact with that exact same SHOUD in another now moment, in the future, they would hear a completely different message. Like an onion it has many layers, each SHOUD delivers deeper wisdom with each listening, as Shaumbra walk their journey to enlightenment.”
Prof Adamus beamed turning to Kuthumi; Kuthumi in turn gracefully lifted his right hand and placed it in the air just in front of Prof Adamus’ face, as if to communicate, talk to the hand, this one’s mine! Juniper looked on in shock whilst to her right she heard UA snort, as she tried and failed to stop the laughter from escaping her lips.
Juniper rolled her eyes at the lot knowing full well she missed an inside joke. No matter. She was paying attention as Prof K turned to her with a big smile and said, “It’s truly wonderful, and now I want to see an essay on the magic you have applied to the Index. I need to ensure you understand the web you wove so you can recreate it.”
“Yes. A prequel and sequel will be required.
Juniper swallowed hard, “Uhm…” turning to UA.
Not skipping a beat, UA stepped forward and replied, “Yes Professor, we were considering a few articles outlining the magic of the index, published appropriately through faculty channels. And as for the pre and sequels,” UA continued, “I believe Jennifer has already scribbled them into a notebook. Working titles, currently, Awakening Index, which will be mostly Tobias, “she turned slightly to face the other professor, “and the Masters Index which will be mostly Adamus.”
“The current Index being pitched in the middle. Although it still favours Professor Adamus ever so slightly,” she concluded with a bow.
Professor Adamus beamed again, this time twice as bright. Kuthumi slapped his friend on the back, and said, “Yes my friend, that one is indeed yours!”.
The two friends departed arm in arm, no doubt straight to the Ascended Masters Club for a drink. Or maybe for a brag, Juniper thought with a smile.
Juniper and UA stood watching as the auditorium emptied out. The last guest to leave was the Librarian, who floated over to them with open arms and said, “You two have certainly created something fun! I want to include a write-up about it in next month’s University Magazine.”
The Librarian was also The Editor, and she shifted between the two seamlessly. “I’d like 200-400 words on my desk by Friday please,” she smiled and floated away before either Juniper or UA could respond.
Juniper turned to UA, they did a synchronized shrug and smile before Juniper said, “So it’s back to magic then.”
UA beamed at Juniper, threw her arm over her shoulder, dragging her away from the auditorium and towards the House, whispering in her ear, “Yes, yes it is! And just in time for Halloween.”