A medical helicopter approached the city of Canterbury. Its skyscrapers reached out into the sky. Azure, Ciel, and Hitomi sat across from Patricia and Jean-Pierre. Azure saw a lot of police and military activity below. People and cars crowding the streets. The helicopter approached a rooftop with a landing platform. Doctors, nurses and orderlies were ready with two gurneys.
Azure turned to the doctor. “Patricia, is that them?”
“Yes.” Patricia looked out the window. “They're expecting us. We have to separate you before become a permanent spell. Thankfully, all that time you were a Nocturne slowed the transition.”
Jean-Pierre turned to Patricia. “So why did you let Azure back into my sisters circle back at Salamander?”
“Because your sister was weakening. Her Mana is pushing her body's limits, but we can't afford to send Azure back in there now to conserve her energy.”
“I feel fine.” Ciel said with a smile, even though she felt the burning pain in the inside.
“You know how your Blood Circle works.” Patricia said. “I know you're in pain.”
Azure lowered her head, nearly burying it in the window, watching the helicopter land. She felt a hand on her back, and her eyes shifted. It was Hitomi reaching over Ciel. Azure faced the girls.
“It's not your fault.” Hitomi said.
“But it is.” Azure said, her mature voice jarred Hitomi.
“I don't think I'm going to get use to that voice.” Hitomi smiled.
“I know what you mean.”
The doors opened, and the orderlies helped everyone off the helicopter. Patricia led Azure and Ciel to the doctors and the gurneys. Suddenly, Ciel collapsed into an orderlies arm. Without hesitation she was scooped up and placed onto the gurney. The doctor opened her eyes shining a light over it.
Azure placed her hand over her head, but maintains her balanced. She saw herself fading a little and returned to normal. She looked up at Jean-Pierre and he hurried her over to the gurney. The girls were carted off with the staff and Patricia right behind them. Everyone rode the elevator down, Ciel now flushed in sweat, she made her magic circle appear, but a nurse slapped a wristband on her causing the circle to lock up.
“We can't have returning her into the circle.” The nurse said.
“The patient's Mana is weakening.” The doctor said. “The surgeon is prepped.”
Patricia looked up at the doctor. “I'll go and get set up.”
“Go it.” Patricia looked at the girls. “I'll be there in a few minutes, you'll be okay.”
Azure nodded as Patricia slowed down and held Jean-Pierre and Hitomi back.
“This is as far as you two can go.” She closed the main doors leaving the teens behind.
After the nurses magically changed the girls clothes into surgery robes, the medical staff ran tests. Doctors maintained the Blood Circle's stability while nurses placed charms on Azure to keep her from faded away. The doors opened and Patricia followed the male surgeon inside.
“Doctor Holmes in the room.” A nurse said.
“That was real reckless of you having the patient keep that spell on.” Doctor Holmes said to Patricia as the girls were put under anesthesia.
“I didn't even know the spell was on for a very long. It was completely stable when Ciel released Azure. She was under Mother's control and in her domain all this time.”
“And yet you let her go back into the circle?” Doctor Holmes looked over Ciel as the nurse strapped her in.
“They needed to rest. Azure had been through a lot and Ciel was tiring out.”
“All right.” Doctor Holmes walked to Azure and noticed the glowing shackles. “What is this?”
“Azure's circle?” Patricia noticed Doctor Holmes was bout to lift Azure's arm up — the shackles glowed purple — and she grabbed his wrist. “Don't. They're very sensitive about people touching the circle, and they'll put weight into those shackles. You could break her arm.”
“Patricia…” Doctor Holmes turned around and towered over her. “What the hell is going on here? What happened to the girls?”
“I already explained it to you on our way here.”
“No, I mean what is this?” Doctor Holmes pointed to the Blood Circle and the Circle of Four. “This is not a standard accident.”
Doctor Holmes walked over to the Blood Circle and using a medical wand, enlarged it. On the circle was Miri's circle she created to imprison Azure, turning her into a summon spell. “Just by eyeballing this, I can see the summon circle has a different signature from either girl, just like those shackles are different. What am I dealing with here?”
“Doctor?” The nurse entered inside with a folder. “Here are the scans.”
Doctor Holmes walked over to the nurse as she swiped her hand over the lighted wall and the scans of the circles appeared. Everyone stared at it, and Patricia's body deflated like a balloon.
The scanned image of the Blood Circle showed Miri's circle outlined in purple. Next to it was the Circle of Four, followed by 5 other magic circles, each with a different signature connected to Azure. Doctor Holmes leaned close and saw a purple outline on each circle.
“That's a spell.” Doctor Holmes traced the outline with his medical wand. He tapped once triggering a search engine of listed spells. A match was made and the word ‘Circular Theft' appeared. “There's our culprit. We can dispel Circular Theft from all the circles and separate the girls, and remove these other circles from Azure.”
Doctor Holmes turned to Patricia. “I'm going to have Circular Theft extracted from both patient's minds.”
“What? You need written permission from their parents.”
“This spell is hurting the patients; the outline is clear as day. There is corruption. They will overdose and die.” Doctor Holmes turned to the nurse. “Call the neuromage Doctor Danielle Wild, let her know this is a Level 5 emergency. Then call the Magi Authority and inform them that we are containing the Circular Theft spell and need to turn it over to them.”
At Technomancer Headquarters, uniformed agents sat before monitors, on the screen was Central Heights covered in grey Mana. Analytical data flash across the screen showing inconclusive. As the staff continued communicating with each field agents, Sora's mother was talking through headphones heading towards the communications unit.
“Yes father.” Narutaki said. “I have comms monitoring all calls in and out of the hospital. The doctors should be scanning their circles any minute.”
“Sora is on standby, Ichiko.” Grandfather said. “I've already cleared with Memorial Academy to let me take her home, as far as they are concerned. Sora is talking with Salamander to help Azure and Ciel, but the military is interrogating them now.”
“Okay, I've sent field operatives to University Hospital to extract the girls.”
“Ma'am?” A male agent got Narutaki's attention.
“Hold on father.” Narutaki approached the monitor and saw Magi Authority flashing on the screen.
“Confirmed. It's from the University Hospital in Canterbury.” The agent handed the headphones to Narutaki and she listened.
“The girl's names are…” The nurse said over the phone. “Ciel LeBleu and Azure Martinez.”
“Thank you.” A man said in response. “We will send our agents arrive shortly.”
“Good job.” Narutaki said and switched over to her father on the other line. “Father, Extraction Code: Green.”
“Roger that. Sora and I will be there soon.” The communications ended and Narutaki flipped a switch on the console.
An alert siren blared and everyone dropped what they were doing. Technomancer agents scrambled as Narutaki relayed the situation.
“All agents prepare for Extraction: Code Green. Prepare for Extraction: Code Green. Target is Azure Martinez and Ciel LeBleu. You will receive your instructions on your way to your destination.”
Back at the triage, Polo spoke with a couple of adults about Sora's situation. One of the adults pats Polo on his shoulder and nodded. As Polo waved goodbye, Swift tried to follow him but an adult pulled her back. He met up with Sora and her grandfather and noticed they were anxious.
“Salamander understands and agreed to help you and Azure. What happened Sora?”
“The hospital called in the Magi Authority.”
“They're a government agency that deals with high level spell casters. My mother said the doctors might discover Circular Theft once Azure and Ciel went into emergency. It was sooner than we expected.”
“They sound bad, but aren't they the good guys, being law enforcement?”
“They're the only law enforcement agency in the country allowed to try and convict people that use high level spells outside of regular courts. Sort of like a military tribunal.”
Polo shrugged his shoulders and Sora rubbed her eyes.
“Sora.” Grandfather said. “Remember, he is a Nocturne, have patience.”
“Sorry Polo.” Sora crossed her arms. “My mother is scrambling agents but they might not make it in time to save my friends.”
“I understand. I can teleport you over to the hospital.”
“Thank you.” Sora smiled and her grandfather headed towards Madam Mayweather looking at Swift approaching her.
“I will talk to your teacher and let her know what is happening. I'm sure she may help us.”
“Thank you grandfather.” Sora gave him a hug and they both noticed the military are placing Salamander in trucks.
“Go before the military sees you.” Grandfather turns to Polo. “And I'll find out what they are planning to with your group.”
Polo and Sora ran quickly to the gas station. A soldier noticed them running around the corner and he followed after them. When made his way around the corner, there was only a shadow of the building.
Jean-Pierre and Hitomi sat at the bench waiting patiently. A tall man approached them; he had short hair and was in a business suit. He was accompanied by two body guards and face was stern and cold, looking down at Jean-Pierre.
“Where is your sister?”
“In ER right now having the circles separated.”
Jean-Pierre's father marched to the nurse's desk and stared down at the head nurse.
“I am Jacques LeBleu. Ciel LeBleu is my daughter. I want to see a doctor now.”
The nurse went through the computer and looked up. “I'm afraid the doctor is still in surgery with your daughter and her friend. Please fill this form out. We need her information.”
The head nurse handed him the forms, but his glares refused that answer. She showed no care for his feelings and placed the form on the desk with a pen.
“Perhaps we can help.” A female voice said from behind the bodyguards.
Everyone turned around and standing before them was a male and female agent, dressed in casual business suits. They revealed their badges with the words Magi Authority.
“I am Agent Sara Danes and he is Agent Kerry Jones. We can help your daughter.”
“What are talking about?”
“She is right now facing charges of possessing Circular Theft in her spell list, but we can make a plea bargain if she gives what we want.”
“What is it?” Jacques said as Jean-Pierre and Hitomi stood beside him.
TO BE CONTINUED...