Swappin' Around

Part of the Tower of Tanee series.

Jenna, Lady Tanee's apprentice, tries out a body swap spell she found in a grimoire her mistress lent her.

Being Lady Tanee’s apprentice was starting to grow on Jenna. At first, the young girl had mostly come here out of simple curiosity, and a little because she didn’t have anything else to do with her life – no parents to steed her toward a particular profession, no enthusiastic teachers to tell her what to study, and no will to join the workforce at fourteen.

Now, a few months later, she felt being accepted under Lady Tanee’s direct guidance had been the best thing to happen to her in her whole life. Sure, she had to do some handiwork here and there to pay for it, but everyone in the Tower was gentle toward her, and Lady Tanee always made sure she got the nicer jobs.

And, she was learning magic. According to her master, she had a lot of potential, but Jenna mostly cared about magic because it allowed her to feel special – strength was irrelevant.

Right now, she was sitting cross-legged on her bed in her room, reading a heavy grimoire Lady Tanee had specifically retrieved in her personal library for her. “I think you’ll enjoy its contents,” she’d told her while handing it over. And enjoying its contents, Jenna did.

Upon awakening, Jenna moved around for a while, trying to catch her blanket’s edge to roll herself back in, for she was cold. Somehow, though, she couldn’t quite reach it. How unusual.

Slowly moaning at the minor disturbance, she opened her eyes and tried to locate the evasive fabric. And gasped softly, upon realizing this wasn’t the bed she’d gone to sleep in. She’d expected something like that, but that was early. Lady Tanee sure was quick!

She gently massaged her temples, trying to get used to the idea, and eventually stood up to prepare herself.

Lady Tanee hadn’t waited for her, and was actually nearly done with her breakfast by the time Jenna arrived in the dining room.

“Hello there, Lady,” the older woman said.

Jenna blushed slightly, acknowledging the salutation with a nod. Having been the one casting the spell, Lady Tanee was still able to break her character by, for instance, using their proper names. Jenna, on the other hand, wouldn’t be able to present herself as anyone else than Jenna.

“Hello,” she answered in a low voice.

Noticing the grin that was painted across her master’s face, she calmly sat down at her place and started spreading chocolate on a few toasts. Normally, she had to be careful around cacao-derived products, because of a few allergies she refused to simply wish away. Today, though, things were different.

“Your body really is something, Lady,” she suddenly blurted out. “Do you use aesthetics magic to enhance it or something?”

Jenna gently shook her head, sinking in the warm water. “That’d be too easy. Everything about it is an hundred percent genuine.”

She actually was pretty proud of that achievement of hers. Admittedly, she did use temporal magic to keep years away, but Lady Tanee didn’t need to know that… and, technically, that didn’t count as cheating.

“By the way, ever thought of getting a tattoo? I heard there’s a pretty good saloon near the university.”

Jenna didn’t answer. She didn’t know what to answer – that was a completely unexpected question.

“When are we switching back, by the way?”

Lady Tanee made an amused face, and gently messed with Jenna’s hair. “Assuming I didn’t make any mistake, we’re switching back in about sixty hours. Why?”

“I just wanted to know,” the young girl answered while trying to get her hair style back in order.

“So, back to being the student?”

Jenna nodded, a wide grin that didn’t manage to completely conceal her secret mischief on her face. “I’m here to learn, after all.”

Lady Tanee looked slightly puzzled, but didn’t question her, probably deciding she’d just play along for now. “We’ll be studying enchantment this afternoon,” she declared in a matter-of-fact voice. “You might want to take a nap,” she added out of the blue. “You might have stayed up a little late yesterday evening.”

Jenna took the hint. She’d learned to know Lady Tanee’s remarks usually were meaningful.

The half-annoyed, half-amused look on Lady Tanee’s face told Jenna her master had finally noticed it. Strategically placed a few inches below her shoulders blades, in the middle of her back, written in simple, mirrored letters. A single word, because Jenna had felt taking more liberties would be too risky.


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Posted on: 2012-05-01

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