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Chapter 6

Wizard City–
I was all alone in a strange place. I wondered what I should do. Headmaster Ambrose had said something about finding the Schools

I glanced up, looking for the Schools, and screamed. I had known that the monstrous tree was at the top of Wizard City. I had known that it was in the very centre of Ravenwood. I had definitely not known that it was alive. The giant tree had a face. I would have run away screaming, if I had anywhere to run to. But… If I didn’t know where the schools were… Maybe this tree did! Wow, that has to be the weirdest sentence ever written.
I walked forward, onto a section of the stone path right in front of the tree. It shook itself, like a bird ruffling its feathers. I stumbled over my words,
“Umm… Mr Tree… Hi… Do, uh, you know where the Schools are?”
The humongous tree laughed. Leaves rained down. I realized that the huge tree was missing an eye. The roots were sculpted into a moustache over a wooden, door-shaped mouth. Leafy boughs formed eyebrows. Speaking in a deep, rumbling voice, it said haltingly,
“The… Magic… Schools… You… Say?” I nodded, and the overgrown plant continued, “I… Am… Bartleby… The… Grandfather… Tree. The… Schools… Are… Around… Me… I… Can’t… Remember…” Bartleby sighed and blinked. I made a mental note to ask either Gamma or the Headmaster about Bartleby. I thanked the Grandfather Tree and skipped back to the spiral mosaic. If the schools were around Bartleby…
I took a random chance and walked to my left. Soon a building came into view. It was mostly gray stone, but around the top it had a painted mural of a purple sky with lightning bolts flashing across it. Next to it, there was another, much smaller, tree. This one appeared to be a Weeping Willow. A black storm cloud hovered above it, and rain poured down in sheets. A small lake surrounded the tree. A miserable expression was plastered on its face. I approached the tree. It said in a very melancholy voice,
“Hello. Are you very happy?”
Not knowing how to reply, I simply said, “Yes, I suppose I am…”
The tree responded by saying, “Everyone is always so happy all the time. It makes me so sad…”
I decided to change the subject. “Is this the Storm School?”
“I am Torrence, the Storm Tree. The Storm School is next to me. No one ever really wants to talk to me, just to know where the Storm School is. No one ever thanks me either…” I politely thanked Torrence and pushed on the thick double doors of the Storm School. They opened with a creak. Inside were lots of wizards moving around. I saw that there was lightning bolt wallpaper and a purple and yellow rug. Purple and yellow must have been the Storm School colours. searched the room for someone who did not look like a student wizard. I found someone all right. He was not a student wizard. He was not even human. To be precise, he was a frog in a suit and top hat. This frog saw me and croaked in a cheerful, high-pitched voice,
“Oh, hello! I am Professor Halston Balestrom. Are you a new wizard?” When I nodded, he said, “Oh, I shouldn’t keep you then. You have many more schools to visit. Enjoy your stay here at Ravenwood! You do know where to go next, right?” I shook my head. Professor Balestrom said, “Oh, dear. We’ll get someone to show you. Storm School hospitality. Jenna!” A wizard dressed in elegant dark purple robes with yellow trim stepped out of the crowd of Storm Students. Long black hair fell past her shoulders. Jenna had eyes almost exactly like Jordan’s, which made me miss Jordan even more. She said,
“Hi, I’m Jenna. I’ll show you around. You must be pretty confused. I know I was when I first came here.”
“Yep. Thanks.” I said.
“No problem! Here, I’ll show you the Ice school next.”
I wasn’t feeling so lost any more.

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