Castle Roland

Ascension of the Thrones

by Thomas Nealy

On Hold

Chapter 2

Published: 8 Apr 14


Ascension of the Thrones

by ThomasNealy

Date: Ruti /16/6870

Caleb woke to a swift kick from his masters, same as every morning. He hated them with a passion. You would think they would be grateful that their lazy asses did not have to do the work themselves. At least be grateful enough to give him the day off, he was ten years old today. His attitude over the years had earned him a lot of beatings, his fellow slaves always told him to give in. Despite their urgings, Caleb refused to let them break him, holding out hope that one day his lot would change.

Last night he had the strangest dream. He dreamed of a young boy who was definitely not a slave. He got a feeling like he belonged with him some how. Then the dream took a strange twist. He was standing on a ship looking out over a planet that was on fire. He was holding the boy's hand, but it was years in the future, and they definitely were not boy's anymore. Then he was woken up by his bitch of a mistress.

"Get up you ungrateful bastard. I swear we never should have bought you. What a waist of money. Well get UP! I'm hungry." She bellowed out. Caleb always thought of her as looking like a zimbot[i]. He tried to ignore her as long as he could. It was his birthday, he wanted to sleep in. Then she started kicking again. Finally, giving in, he got up.

"What would you like to shove down your gullet today, mistress?" He asked with a grin. All it did was earn him a smack across the face. One of these days they were going to have enough of his comments, but today was not the day. After all, you can't be a fat lazy slob without eating your own body weight every day.

"I'm hungry, get in there and get me something."

"Of course it's hungry, it's always hungry." He murmured under his breath.

"Hurry up!"

"Well, if your in such a damn hurry make it yourself. No? I didn't think you would get up off your lazy ass and do it. So just wait, I have to make the shit first." That earned him a glass thrown at his head, but like always, it seemed to deflect past his head at the last moment.

A few moments later her food was done. "Here you go mistress, sorry you had to wait. I would not want you losing any of that blubber you worked so hard to get." She just glared at him. She was allowed to beat him, but her husband would never allow him to be killed. Although if she complained to her husband Caleb's beating always got worse.

When he was six his mistress decided to try and torment him by showing him his birth certificate. It had his birthday on it as well as his name. The names of his family were blacked out, but he did not care, he now knew how old he was because of that. What she tried to use as a means of torment turned into a joy for him. Not that he would tell them that. On the same day, she told him that his family sold him because he was worthless. He was sold at three years old. That was all he knew of his real life. He held out hope that he would be rescued, that someone out there wanted him.

He waited for his mistress to finish eating and leave for the day. She never went to work, but she did go to the market. He loved the times when he was alone. They had made the mistake of teaching him how to read. Now, whenever he was alone he read anything and everything he could.

About midday, he raided the food stores and made himself food. Neither of his owners would notice. The woman ate too much to keep track of. After he ate he went to take a nap. The place was clean anyway because he never allowed it to get dirty, but he did not scrub every second of the day either.

As Caleb passed into the world of sleep he had his dreams again. They were of the boy again. This time Caleb was watching the boy run around with some other kids. Two of them looked like they could be the boy's brothers, the others did not. They looked like they were having fun. They were kicking a ball around. It looked like the Terran game of soccer. He read about that game one of the days he was left alone. Of course he had no one to play it with, but he still liked learning about it.

Then the dream shifted. It looked like the future again. They were older again; he was standing next to the boy, cuddled into his side, he looked up and the boy started kissing him. It made him feel good, and it reinforced his idea that they belonged together.

The dream shifted again, but it was what looked like the past. The boy was younger and clearly in pain, not physical but emotional. He looked about six or seven years old, he was siting next to a chamber of some sort looking at another boy who was laying in the chamber. The first boy, the one he kept dreaming about, looked worried for his friend. He was also sad and very scared as well. Caleb knew that the boy would be alright, he had just seen him playing that soccer game. He wanted to reach out and comfort that boy and tell him not worry, but this had already happened so it was pointless.

Date: Alritel /8/6872

Twelve year old Callin was sitting in one of his rooms, he had set it up for working on his projects. It had been a year since he had convinced his mother to let him use the neural imager. What he did not tell her at the time was he was going to download the entire database into his head, two hundred sixty-four modulus. It took two weeks to finish, he had to be in a Bio Chamber the entire time during it so his body would not shut down. Lucky for him, once the procedure started it could not be stopped, that did not stop his mom from giving him hell when he came out of the chamber though. He refused to feel guilty about it, he thought it was the only way that his plan would work and he never forgot what his mom told him. Sometimes it only takes one person to stand up and say no more. He was determined to be that one person. If he was destined to be Emperor then he would make sure he had an Empire to rule.

He was deep in thought working on some programing when Chace burst in to the room. "Come on Callin, you're missing a big party. Why are you in here, when you should be out having fun? Come on you're twelve, not some old guy with a job." He grabbed his arm and tried to pull him from the chair.

"Get off Chace! I need to finish this personality loader. Then I can compile it, after that she will be done and I can test her."

"Great, so instead of having a real girlfriend your gonna make one. You could have any girl, or guy for that matter, that you wanted. But nooo, you have to make yourself a friend."

"It's not a girlfriend. She will be an assistant, a true AI that can help me with my projects." He then frowned. "Besides, I don't want just any guy or girl, you know that. The only reason they are even interested in me is because I'm the crown prince."

"Well, your hot, too. Don't forget that Callin."

"Exactly! They don't care about me as a person. I'm just a piece of meat to them. You may like having as many sexual partners as a sixty year old man at the age of twelve, but I don't. I'm not going to go out there, get drunk, screw a random guy or girl, then drop into bed and pretend I remember their name in the morning."

"OK ,so no strangers in your bed, but that does not mean you can't go out and have fun. You never go out any more."

Pausing his work he turned to Chace. "I am sorry I have become so boring, but this is important. I have to get her done so I can work on the other stuff. I know programing and robotics are not your thing, but some of this you would like."

"Yeah, right. What could you be doing that would interest me?" Callin did not respond, just handed him a PADD. Chace took a few moments to look it over. What started as an incredulous look turned into one of interest, then excitement.

"Callin, is this what I think it is?"

"If you think its a new type of stardrive, then yes, it is what your thinking. And no, you can't tell anyone about it. This is why I went through that living hell of having the image done. I needed to know what I was doing. That will be going on a few new ships and a few redesigned ones. See, now if you were not out partying every night you could be here, with me, reinventing every ship that we ever designed." He knew he had his best friend at that point.

"Screw the party. I'm going to help."

"Fine, then let me get back to work. You can start with the Star Cruiser, I need it to be redesigned."

"OK, what modifications?"

"Enlarge the living quarters, stream line the floor plan. I need two docking bays capable of handling up to two heavy cruisers. I won't need anywhere near as many quarters though, so you can reuse that space. Also, the weapons need to be doubled, with a triple shield, this armor on it." He sent the specs on his new Armour alloy and watched as Chace's eyes widened. "Leave the electric system off for now. I need to get a few other techs up and running first, as well as my AI protocol. But I want the highest end stuff for electric and data. As for drives, I want a small warp drive. It wont need to go any faster than warp two. I will also want a slipstream drive, an Intergalactic Hyperspace Drive, and my new drive as well. So that means I will need a Matter / Antimatter Reactor, Cold Fusion Reactor, and this new type of energy cell once its tested and working." He paused again and sent the specs on his new energy source. One again Chace's eyes bulged. "The bridge will need to be round, other than that there won't be many changes. Oh, one more thing, the power room needs to be lined in this alloy." Callin sent him the specs. "And the computer control room, where all computer and ship data bases and communications equipment will be, needs to be in the same room, and it needs to be air tight and filled with sulfur hexafluoride. It also needs to be filtered down to the nano particle and kept just above freezing. The last two modifications, along with the power and data grids and armor will be standard on all ships I modify. Think you can handle that?" He nearly fell out of his seat as he watched Chace do a vary good impression of a fish.

"This is what you have been locked up in here for almost a year doing? Jeez Callin, any of these new technologies could make you famous before you become Emperor. Why are you keeping it secret? And what is this building plan here?" He stopped and looked at the blue prints for the base. "It looks like a ship yard and military base in one."

"That's because that is what it is."

"Why would you need a ship yard? And looking at this, a really big one at that. It's not like your building an armada or anything." He looked up at his friend expecting to see some sort of smile at his off the wall comment. All he saw was determination.

"Now, you know why it is so important. Once I finish Celestia, I'll be able to do all this faster. Once she is compiled I need to put all that together so she can run." He points to a collection of hardware that would make even the Imperial computer grid administrators look on in envy. "I only have about fifty-four lines left, I already know what needs to be put in, then I can take a break while she compiles, but I do need to get that built before she will run right." The last few lines of code he was putting in would make it so Celestia, and any AI that she made after her, would forever be completely loyal to the House of Devaus or its successors.

"You know if your father found any of this we would be in big trouble, not to mention he would take it all and use it for his own twisted uses."

"He's not my father!"

"Oh Callin. OK, so you hate the guy, but he's still your father. Even if he is a bastard and a completely evil man."

"I really don't think he's my father. I can't explain it, it's just a feeling I get. Not to mention I really, really don't want to be related to the guy that probably caused your parents deaths. Besides, it takes more than genetics to make you a parent, it takes love as well, and I don't think Stephon ever learned the meaning of the word."

"Yeah, don't remind me. One of these days I'll get my revenge on him for it. Even if it lands me on a prison planet doing it."

"Don't worry, I would pardon you. The first thing I plan on doing when I take the throne is to send him to the deepest darkest hole I can find. Then I'm going to grant my mom a divorce, hell, even an annulment. After that I'm going have to spend two years going through every law he passed and probably having to strike down half of them. OK, so probably all of them." He corrected himself after he saw Chace about to argue the point.

"OK, so why do you need an armada?"

"You don't want to know. You think you hate him now, well you don't have my gift of foresight like I do."

"Please Callin, show me." Chace begged. He knew Callin had been having dreams for the last two years, and that it was right around that time that he stopped going out, and started working on all this stuff. He wanted to know why.

"If I show you what I see will you swear never to tell another living soul and to help me, even if it means getting imaged yourself?"

"Yes, I do." He looked nervous. Callin's visions were strong and detailed.

"OK, but remember you asked to see this." With that Chace got a flood of images racing in to his mind. For fourteen minutes he watched as vision after vision raced by, image after image, feeling after feeling. By the end of it he was sick and threw up in the trash.

"For the love of the King, is that what you have been holding inside for the last two years? How can you stand it? I would have killed him by now just to stop it from happening."

"I can't kill him without turning him into a martyr. He has to show his hand first. Besides, the visions are not all bad."

"Your talking about your mystery boy, or man. It's hard to get a grip in your visions. No wonder you don't want any one, he's hot, but still, it could be years before you meet him. You shouldn't hold yourself back because of some guy you see in your dreams."

"It would feel like I was cheating on him. I'm going to marry him some day. I know that, so I will just wait. I just wish I knew who he was and were he was. Part of him looks familiar, like I should know him, but the answer eludes me. It's his face, it just looks so familiar to me.

Several hours later Callin finished his programing and debugging and started the compiling. He got up, stretched and then walked over to the pile of hardware and looked at it. He separated it into piles and looked at the chassi, then looked over at Chace. Chace, for all his comments about going out looked like he was going nowhere. All it took was the chance to modify, and even make, new ships and Chace was hooked.

"Come on Chace, let's get some food and drink then we can come back and do some more before bed." Chace looked up from his work and smiled. He truly did love working on ship designing. It is what he wanted to do, besides being the Earl of Brector. Sure, he had obligations and duties as the ruler of Brector, but most of the day to day things could be handled by aids and ministers. He would have a lot of time to work on what he really loved. It all just took balance, a lot of balance.

Together they got up and made their way to the kitchens. There they talked the cooks into making them some food. Like all preteen and teen boys they were forever hungry. After they had their food they sat down and ate it. Enjoying the simple time of just being together. Not having to work, or act a certain way, or show off for the public. They could just be kids, and that is what they were.

When they were done they went back to Callin's work room. Callin started building his system and Chace went back to his ships.

"Chace how far have you gotten?" Callin asked after a few more hours of work. He was ready to call it night. He was half way through building his system. He really wanted to to keep going. He was used to sleeping in his workshop after a long night. He even had a bed put in there so he would not have to leave.

"I finished the Star Cruiser and started working on your two freighter classes. The one is really modified and it's really big. I used a Gallian mining transport as the base design. It was the only freight class ship that was big enough. Even then I had to double it's size. What are you planning on hulling? Most of the bays look like they're dedicated to some kinda buffer system?"

"That, my friend, you don't need to know about. But it will be transporting sixteen satellite sized and shaped ships as well, that's why it's so big. Well part of the reason, let's keep going, by time I'm done here you should have finished what your working on too."

When Callin finally looked up and stretched after having finished the system he saw Chace asleep in his bed with the PADD on his chest. He just smiled to himself. He was grateful for his friends help. After he looked at Chace's changes he was really impressed, Chace seemed to have a natural flare for this stuff. He went over and put the PADD on the table, then stripped Chace and himself, then crawled in next to him. He did not think anything of it. They had slept in each others beds since they were four. Just because they were in puberty did not mean they had to stop. Nothing ever happened between them out side of a same time masturbation session every once in awhile. They just never thought of taking it further. They were like brothers, so to Callin it would be like having sex with Dani or Lucius. It just never crossed his mind. Besides he was spoken for, well at least in his dreams he was.

Mean while, on the other side of the planet just as Callin was getting ready to go to bed Caleb is waking back up, he dreamed of the boy again. He wished he had a name for him. It just seemed so wrong to keep calling him the boy all the time. This time he was watching him have a conversation with someone. He could not tell what was said. He usually could not. This time it made him feel different though, almost content.

His dreams shifted around during the night but mostly they stayed focused on the boy. He was dreaming about him most of the time these days. He still had other dreams, just not as often. This boy was becoming a major part of his life. It was strange they had never met, yet he was sure he was falling in love with this mystery boy. He gave him hope that the future was different, better.

He rolled over and stretched, immediately wincing in pain. His master had whipped him last night. He was still bleeding from it. The cuts would heal and scar over just like all the others. It was the burns that hurt the most, and the punches. At least the whip cuts stopped throbbing soon after they were dealt. The burns hurt for days, so did the punches.

His masters had an older son who liked to beat on him, right now he was away at boarding school, Thank the Spirits, Caleb hated him with a passion. Unfortunately for Caleb, Nevor was coming home for the end of term break, and Caleb hated these visits. He always got beat more, and Nevor always creeped him out. Something was not right about Nevor. Caleb always felt dirty after having been anywhere near him. All Caleb could do was try to stay out of the way for the four months Nevor would be there.

When his master came home he was busy thinking and failed to hear the door opening. His master caught him reading and he was going to get beat, again. He just went with it now, so after he felt his arm get tugged he knew what was coming. His master dragged him to the pole in the back of the house and tied his arms to the cross beam at the top. Caleb went to his happy place as he got whipped. He barely felt the 30 lashes as they cut deep into his back. He was used to it. He was not chained to the pole in his mind. In his mind he was with the boy, who ever he was and where ever he was. Some how he knew the boy could see him, it gave him strength. After his whipping was done he was thrown into a small room that was his. He could feel the blood dripping down his sides and back now. He rolled on to his stomach to prevent the pain he would have if he was on his back. He would have to be ready to make the midday meal when his mistress came home, so he did not sleep like his body wanted. He could not figure out why his master was home so early though. He knew now that they knew about his reading that he was not going to be able to do that any more. He sighed as he realized his life just got harder.

"Get up you good for nothing shit. I want food." His mistress called out. With his master home he did not mouth off like he normally would.

"Coming!" He yelled back. He ran off to the kitchen and started cooking. He wondered if she even bothered to taste the food or just swallowed it whole. He decided to make a Terran dish called hamburger. It was odd because it had no ham in it. He made six of them for her and one for his master. He got the toppings ready and put them in a dish, after placing them on the cart he pushed it all out to to the dining room. He gave them their food then made a hasty retreat to the kitchen. He took the time to get something for himself while they were occupied. He had thought of running before, he knew he would never make it out of the area before the slave hunters came for him. He was stuck 'till he got rescued.

Date: Sumtager /2/6874

Callin waited outside the office of a manager of the Imperial Bank. He realized he would not have enough in his account to fund everything, and he did not want to take that much from the house account either. Taking the money from the Imperial Account would draw his fathers attention, something he really wanted to avoid. So here he was waiting for the manager to get to him, it did not take long. He was the Crown Prince after all. He brought Chace with him since he decided to make him a partner. He really had helped a lot over the last two years.

"Your Imperial Majesty, Your Lordship, what is it I can do for you both today?" He asked with a slight bow. He had no idea what Callin and Chace wanted, but he did know that in seven years Callin was going to Emperor. Getting on his good side would only help him later.

"I need a loan for a large sum. I also need it to be kept quite from everyone, and I do mean everyone. This loan is not to be stored on the grid in any way, shape, or form. " The manager looked nervous at that. He was sure the Regent would want to know about this. Callin picked up on his issues. "If my father finds out I will be most displeased. Confidential loans is a service you offer, in this I am no different. But mark my words well, if you cross me you will live to regret it." For extra effect he sent a bolt with his mind. The manager cringed but nodded.

"That won't be a problem. How much do you need? And for how long?"

"I need 168 billion credits, a new account made under a corporation name, and I need it for three years. Also, it will be a lump sum pay off at the end of the loan. Yes, I know that means that the interest is compounded the whole time I have it out." Callin took some pleasure out of seeing the managers mouth drop open.

"Well, umm, you see," The manager stammered.

"Just spit it out!"

"You will need a large collateral for that. Even the Imperial family does not bring in that much in three years."

"I plan on using the title to a planet I own for collateral." Once again Callin was treated with the managers best impression of a fish. "I assume that would be sufficient?"

"Umm, well yes. Do you have the title and location of the planet?"

"I have the title, the location, however, will remain off the record." Callin gave him a copy of the title to Ember. A planet yet uncolonized that was in the middle of the epsilon sector. He had never been there himself, but using long range imaging he was able to get a good idea of what the planet was like. It suited his needs perfectly. He filed a claim on the planet under a corporation that Celestia set up for him.

"Yes, that will work, and may I assume that you want the account open under this company's name as well."

"Yes, with my self and Chace listed as operators."

"We will take care of everything, Your Majesty. Just swipe your Ident Chip here and that is all that is needed." They swiped their chips and then left. The next stop was the robotics factory and building supply, as well as the ship dock.

At the robotics factory he handed over the plans for his construction droids and told them to build three thousand of them. He paid using the new account he just opened. They said they would be ready in one month. He sighed, he wished it could be done faster. In fact, it could but then he would need to assemble his R.S.F system. It was a complete remake of the traditional replication system. His version could not only fabricate new things from a design but also synthesize complex molecules from base atoms.If he had his new system and a system pad big enough, along with sufficient raw materials, he could just have Celestia make them for him. But that was not an option, yet. Once he was on the planet and had everything up and running, then he could do that. Until then he would have to do it the hard way.

Their next stop was the building supply yard. He handed over the blue prints to his building. Well, at least the basic form of it. Once the main building was built. Celestia would expand it to its final form. The supply yard foreman gave him a questioning look but thought better than to question the Crown Prince. He figured out what all they would need and placed the order. He assured them it would be ready in one month. Callin made sure to get the blue prints back. The less trail he had the better.

After that they decided to get food for the midday meal. They pulled up their the cloaks and hoods then set out to find a place to eat at. Everything was going well until they decided to first make a stop at a jewelers stand on their way. Callin wanted a new watch, his old one was starting to wear out. At the stand they made idol conversation with the owner and they assumed jeweler. Both Callin and Chace picked out a nice watch, and Callin also saw a necklace that caught his eye. It was the symbol for the spirits and the King of the heavens over laid. It looked to be made of platinum. They paid and left, Chace helped him put his necklace on. When he was done they went on their way. Something felt off to Callin though, he could not pin point it but in the back of his mind alarms were going off. Sure enough, as soon as they rounded the next corner a guy stepped out. He had a laser pistol pointed at them both.

"Give me everything you have that is worth anything." He held out one hand, Callin just stood there and starred at him. Instead of giving the man what he wanted he pushed his hood back revealing who he was. The man started to shake and accidentally fired the pistol, it missed both of them. Callin jumped into action and sent a mental blast at the man that knocked him senseless, then he used his Telekinesis to hold him.

"And just what did you hope to gain from robbing two people. The second you left I would have called the city guard and they would have found you."

"Dead men don't talk." The would be robber spit back.

"Yes, your right, they don't." Just to drive his point home he squeezed the man and began raising the temperature of his body. The man began to scream, in pain. Callin let up then drove into the man's mind. Callin knew that there had to be a reason why this guy was trying to rob people. What he found did not surprise him. His father and his new social programs, while looking good on paper, were bad for everyone. Just one more example of how the Regent was destroying the Empire.

"Just because you are having a hard time does not give you the right to kill and steal from who ever you want. I could kill you where you stand for pulling a weapon on me. But I'm going to turn you over to the guards and let the Justials deal with you instead." The man just sneered at him. Callin sent out a mental probe locating the closest guard and gave him a image of where they were. Within seconds they were surrounded by guards.

"Your Majesty, Your Lordship, are you both unharmed?" A frantic guard asked. Having the Crown Prince almost robbed and killed in your sector was not something any guard wanted.

"Yes, I am fine. I think Chace is as well."

"We will take him off your hands, Your Majesty, if you will release him from your hold."

"Yes, take him. And if it is possible I would like this to remain as quiet as possible. I would rather not have guards around me all the time. And if my family found out they would no doubt be worried and over react. As you can see, I am able to defend myself." He made it sound like he was including his father in his statement, but he was not. Although he did not want his father to find out for...other reasons.

After the guards had left they continued on their way, but not without protests from all the guards. Callin assured them they would be fine. That they were only going to find a place to eat. Hearing that the guards made a few suggestions, and left. The place they suggested was of course with in eyesight of a guard house. But they had good food, and that is all that Callin and Chace really cared about. To the rest of the people around them they seemed quiet but they were talking in a way that no one could over hear.

[So what was that guys problem.] Chace asked once they had their food.

[Yet another example of how the Regent has made things worse. That man was a victim of my father's Social support and new tax plan.] Callin bitterly sent back.

[At this rate there won't be an Empire for you to rule. Do you think we will be followed now that the guards know we are out here?]

[Probably, but all we really have left is to buy the ship and stop by the computer builders. Neither of which should raise any concerns. I buy a new shuttle to cover why we are at the shipyard and alter his memories to think that is all we got. As for the computer, well, every one knows that I play with computers all the time so that would not be odd for me to be there.]

[And just how do you plan on paying back that big of a loan?]

[That you will just have to wait until we have everything set up and running on Ember. Then I will have a Neural Image module ready that will have all the information about all the new tech I have. ]

[Fine, what about all the other stuff we need. Parts for the computers, matter buffers, your R.S.F system. We can't just walk into a store and pick that stuff up.]

[No, Celestia is getting it using the data grid, it will be delivered to the palace. We will take it with us when we go, and assemble everything on planet.] By this point they were done eating and were ready to leave. They switched back to spoken language.

"Let's get the rest of this done. Let's go." Callin said as he swiped his hand over the chip reader and selected his personal account. Then they left. They stopped by the place that would build Celestia's new system. It was too big for Callin to build himself or he would have. The main system was the size of a shuttle, and that did not include the built in matter buffer and the equipment that was added on to it like communications.

Callin handed the tech the schematics for his system and watched as his eye's bulged. This system alone would cost billions. Something that Callin was well aware of. It of course would have been cheaper to build himself, that was not an option yet. He knew that Celestia already had plans of upgrading herself once her R.S.F system was up and running. After that this system would form the main hub for the House of Devaus network.

The trip to the ship dealer was more difficult. Trying to explain why a fourteen year old and a fifteen year old would want a cargo freighter, a cargo transport shuttle, and a personnel transport shuttle...was difficult. In the end Callin had to use a mental prompt to get the deal done. Some people just asked too many questions for Callin to feel OK about it.

Back at the Palace Callin and Chace just walked into the forum when Stephon stormed out of the Brown Palace.

"Just what did you two think you were doing all day. Do you have any idea how bad that made me look? You getting a gun pointed at you by a robber? You made me look like a fool."

"And just how is that different from every other day, father. You always look like a fool. You should be used to it by now. What I do with my personal time is my business not yours. You gave up the right to tell me what to do a long time ago. Right around the same time you tried to have my best friend and his whole family killed, and as usual you only did a half assed job, because as you can see Chace is alive and well." With that Callin turned and walked away leaving Stephon staring after him. Chace followed after Callin holding his sides because he was laughing so hard.

"Callin that was amazing. Did you see the look on his face when you went off on him? I'm surprised he did not pull the 'I'm the Emperor' bit he always does. But then I think he was too shocked to think. Not that he does any way." By now they were safely back in the Palace of Light.

When they walked into his workshop they had two surprise visitors waiting for them. As soon as Callin saw his mom and Medil he ran over and gave them both hugs. He would never admit it out loud, but when he was younger he used to wish Medil was his dad. Sometimes he still did. "Mom, Medil, what are you doing in here?" It was not lost on anyone that he was still snuggled in Medil's chest. If someone that did not know them were to see them they would think they were father and son. Which they were, but not many knew that.

"Well, we heard about your exploits out on town and we wanted to see what you were doing."

"I was just out doing some stuff." He answered as he backed away from them. He felt bad not telling them everything but he did not want to risk it.

"Well that guy that tried to rob you came before a tribunal not long ago. Care to explain what it was you did to him?" Medil asked.

"The body bind, or the burning skin, or the mind scan?" Callin responded innocently.

"How about all three." His mother narrowed her eyes at him.

"Well, we had just left a jewelry store and that guy came out from around a corner and pointed a pistol at us. So I showed him who I was and he fired at me. I think it may have been from the shock of finding out he was going to kill the Crown Prince. Anyway, I sent a mind blast at him that knocked him senseless, then used my telekinesis to put him in a body bind. After that he started talking about how dead men don't talk. So I squeezed him and turned up the heat. When he started screaming I stopped then called the Guards."

"What would you have done if he did not miss the first time?" His mother asked.

"Well, I would probably be hurt now wouldn't I." Callin hated when they did this. So his attitude started up.

"You went into the city with no guards, no body armor, no personal shield." Callin and Chace squirmed under their gaze. At least Ann and Medil were worried about their well being and not their public image.

"We did not think we would need them. We probably should have taken the armor and shield, but we really did not want the guards to see what we were doing."

"And just what were you two doing that the guards should not see. For that matter just what are you doing in here." Ann asked as she gestured around the room. There were computer terminals everywhere and schematics hung on the walls. And Celestia's system flashing away.

"I would rather not say." Callin murmured. They looked down, both a little ashamed at keeping this from them. They knew they could be trusted, but if anything went wrong they did not want it to come back on them. Callin felt the slight mental touch from his mother, and he throw up walls to keep her out. That shocked Ann, she realized that Callin was getting very good with his ability.

"Please don't try and read it. Please mom, it's nothing bad it's just if it does not work out, and we get in trouble, I want you both to be able to to say you knew nothing about it."

"Yea, Ann really, if you knew you would approve. It's just with Stephon around we can't risk it."

That was all they needed to hear. If it was something that needed to be hidden from Stephon, then they would let it drop.

"I can show you some of what I have been doing. Let me introduce you to Celestia. Celestia say hello to my mom and Medil."

<Hello Your Majesty, Hello Your Excellency. I am Celestia.>

"What is it?" Medil asked as he and Ann looked stunned.

"I think he built an AI for him self." Ann mumbled.

<That is correct, I am an Artificial Intelligences. Although I have taken the liberty of comparing myself to other such beings, and it appears I am the most advanced A.I ever programed.>

"And what is your purpose?" Medil asked. He looked very proud of Callin.

<I was built to assist Callin and Chace.> She answered cryptically. She knew what to say and not to say.

"Eventually we plan on having similar systems control the security and other systems in the Devaus owned and controlled buildings." Callin said. He noticed the look of pride that Medil was giving him, and it made him happy.

Ann and Medil seemed satisfied for now and left, reminding them to wear armor and shields if they were going into the city.

[i]A whale like creature native to Devia. Similar to a Blue whale.

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