The smile I had vanished. My head slumped over dejectedly. “Damn” was all I could say.
“Now hurry up and eat your breakfast. The Master has already selected your first mentor,” Solana demanded.
“First mentor? I’m going to have more than one?”
“It’s common practice,” Keith chimed in, “Usually the Master will enlist help from Guardians that fall under the same spectrum family. So take me for example, my first mentor was an Orange, and he taught me the basics along with Orange abilities. When my training was completely and that mentor was satisfied, I moved onto Yellow, and then Purple, until I passed the QC test.”
“The QC test?”
“The Quality Color test. In this exam, you will spar against your first mentor. However, the goal isn’t to defeat your first mentor. It is to showcase your ability to balance the spectrum family, and how well you understand the basics. Sure, you really impress the Master if you beat your mentor, but it won’t affect your results.”
“So, what will be the case for me? White doesn’t fall under any spectrum family.”
“I assume you’ll have six mentors, one per color, and the first will probably be chosen at random. The Master most likely took a head count of every Guardian at the castle.”
I gave Keith a simple nod, “What are you two doing today?”
“I have to guard the front doors again today,” Keith responded. “How about you, Solana?”
“Hopefully nothing. I need to get Elijah out of those duds. Sorry about the trainee clothes, by the way. No one wears them anymore, and it was the only clean set of clothes I could find.”
I moved my arms in a circular motion, then my legs, “They’re loose and comfortable though. And they fit, which is a plus.”
Solana laughed, “Still, you wanted to check out Timorba for any clues on your parents. A shopping spree makes a perfect excuse.”
“The Master won’t be angry?”
“Are you serious? As long as we aren’t digressing from a job, we can do as we please. Now hurry up and eat.”
It just dawned on me that I hadn’t even brought breakfast to my seat. I stood up and approached the line, knabbed some scrambled eggs and bacon, and returned to the table.
“Oh yeah, I had this question for a little bit, but never got to ask it.”
“Well?” Keith asked.
“Are there other Guardians like me that never join the Order?”
Keith and Solana balked for a moment, and looked at each other. Then, Solana spoke up, “Yes. Many of them have come here, and the Master welcomed them. However, their views were warped. They didn’t see the world the way the Order did, so they left. Some of them simply work independently, tracking down any clues about the Solar Convergence. Others, however, use their Essence for terrible things. Guess who has to play clean-up crew?”
I struck a nerve on a touchy subject. That of course wasn’t my intent, but those two did not want to spare any more details. I decided to drop the topic altogether.
“Sorry, I didn’t realize it was such a sensitive question.”
“Don’t be, you didn’t know,” Solana reassured me, miraculously brightening the mood. “Now, let’s go see who your mentor will be.”
“Ok,” I agreed.