Tomorrow Is Another Day
The following years passed quickly. Eva contacted her brother in Sopia and they returned with some of his esper friends. The two residents of Skure that Noah had spoken to, Ian and Kayla, had also managed to contact their acquaintances, and the population of Skure grew.
Noah felt bad about using Dr. Luveno's spacecraft and robot, so her uncle sent one of the fleet of bright orange ships that belonged to the spaceport of Paseo. Ian had been a pilot before he moved to Skure, so he transported the messengers to wherever they needed to go.
When Ian first returned with the spaceship, he brought Noah a note from her uncle. Noah read the letter first. The contents were expected: he applauded her efforts, hoped she was doing well, and wanted her to visit his palace as often as possible.
He also wrote about the news of the marriage of Queen Alis. Noah smiled as she read about how Alis had wed a young man named Nekise, with whom she had grown up with in Camineet. He had been a good friend of her late brother, and the two had become close.
Under the rule of the new king and queen, Algol prospered. Cities flourished and trade increased once again. Noah wondered what the port town of Scion was like now, but she refused to let her mind dwell too long on the subject. She had never seen the city in its prime and she was curious...but not too curious.
Meanwhile, the esper population of Skure kept growing. Soon, they outgrew the small, underground caverns. "We need to find a new place as quickly as possible!" Eva told Noah.
Noah knew that she was right. She remembered one of the plains that she had traveled while searching for the Laconian items and told Eva about it. "We can start our own village!" she said. "It will take a while, but I'm sure we can do it!"
They arranged to visit the site in a few days' time. Noah took Eva, her brother, and her brother's friend (who just happened to be an architect) to the plain, which they reached in a week.
"It's perfect!" Eva said when she saw it. "We can begin moving here immediately. It won't take long to erect a few simple huts and building of more permanent structures can begin soon. Just look at all the trees!"
"There's just one problem," Raymond, the architect, told them. "The weather. This field is too exposed; we'll all freeze. I doubt we could build underground, like Skure, but there is an alternative."
"What is it?"
He pointed through the trees. "There's a kind of inlet there in the mountains. It will offer some protection from the environmental factors, although there's another small problem."
Noah sighed. Things were not going well. "Now what?"
"It will limit the size of the village. As you can see, the space between the mountains is not very large. We can only hope for a few average-sized houses."
Eva was going to answer him, but she saw that Noah had that distant look in her eyes that meant that she had a whole new plan.
"What if," Noah started, "we have one large building instead of many smaller ones? We could design bedrooms, kitchens, and all live together and practice magic! It could all fit between the mountains and be protected!"
Raymond nodded. "That could work. I'll start the plans when we get back to Skure."
The architect got assistants and builders to aid him in his designs and the foundation for Esper Mansion was soon put into place. Although Noah didn't know much about building, she was eager to help as much as possible and was at the site almost every day.
During this period of time, Noah only left Dezoris twice. The first time was soon after the plans were completed for Esper Mansion. She traveled to Motavia to attend the burial ceremonies of Master Tajima, who had finally succumbed to his old age. Her uncle arranged a small, private funeral outside of Tajima's cave. The only attendants were Noah, the governor, and his current student, a young boy who was an orphan, much like Noah.
His body was placed in a simple wooden coffin, which was then buried in the soft Motavian sand. Noah wept for her former teacher, but she knew that he wouldn't want her to mourn for that long. She knew that he would always be watching her and he would be proud of her efforts to unite the espers.
Her second trip out of Dezoris came when her uncle joined Tajima. This time, the ceremony was open to the citizens of Motavia and it was a bit fancier. Again, Noah paid her respects, but didn't take too long at the grave of the governor. She almost regretted not visiting as much, but she knew that he would understand.
A few months after the death of her uncle, Esper Mansion was completed. Noah, the temporary leader of the group, opened the doors in a small, simple ceremony and welcomed everyone inside. Although the majority of the espers shared rooms, Noah was given her own study in the center of the structure.
She often sat in this study, just listening to the sounds of life around her. Master Tajima had told her that there was nothing to be done about helping the espers, but she had proved him wrong. She felt happy. She felt fulfilled.