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August 4, 2016 by Lyn

Year Five of the Addergoole School, after Chapter 120.

She looked at the list of questions again. She’d made a good attempt at going through the other topics, but there was only one she really wanted to try for. She shouldn’t; it wasn’t her area of expertise, and her rare sessions with Regine had only begun to cover the topic, but how often did one get to delve into such a fun topic? Wasn’t learning about Ellehemaei part of why they were there, after all?

“Ellehemaei physiology, please,” she asked. For once she was glad she couldn’t read people’s reactions, because she was fairly certain those were some weird ones she was getting. But her Mentor was simply smiling.

“What is the primary sexual characteristic of Callavanaei?”

Callavan… callavan…. she’d heard that before. She hit the buzzer seconds before Carter.

“Kailani, yes?”

The Callavanaei were the Daeva. “Homogamy, ma’am.”

“Also known as simultaneous or synchronous hermaphrodism. Very good. Would you like the bonus question?”

“Yes please.”

“What is the common name for the area of the brain that is enlarged in Tesshebaei and their descendents?”

She was smirking very broadly now, almost, for the dour Director, a grin. Tesshebaei. She knew that word, too. Same place as she’d…”

“Three seconds.”

“The frontal lobe.”

“Yes. The Grigori, as they are commonly known, are renowned for their intellect and processing powers, as are their descendants.”

Of which, of course, Kai was one. Was Regine sitting there and gloating with her about their intelligence?

“Next category?”

“Ellehemaei physiology again, please.”

“Very good. What can be discerned about an Ellehemaei with insectoid wings?”

Well, they were probably flightless, leaned towards a penchant towards kaana… Kai pondered. Lisha had insectoid wings, didn’t she? What did that mean about her? What, more importantly… oh. Patterns. She smacked the buzzer down while trying to remember the proper Old Tongue Word.

“They are descended from the Garrubanaei, but are not Garrubanaei.”

“Very good. Wings of any type appear to suggest a Mara ancestry, although I also would have accepted Daeva ancestry for that question, as the insectoid wings appear to denote an intersection of those two bloodlines.”

Interesting. She would have pegged ‘Lisha as Daeva-Grigori, but perhaps she was simply intelligent and Daeva leaning. The cy’Lindens had certainly come off more intelligent in the challenge than she’d expected of them.

“Would you like a bonus question, Kailani?”

If she got this one, they’d win this round. “Yes, please.”

“Is it possible for an Ellehemaei with insectoid wings fly?”

Kai frowned again. She’d never seen ‘Lisha do more than hover barely off the ground. Physiologically, it shouldn’t be possible, unless…

“Only if one of their primary or secondary Domains is Kaana.”

“Very good.” And now the Director was beaming, and for the first time since coming here, Kai really was, too. She’d done it. They’d done it! She turned to grin at the rest of her raggle-taggle crew.

“Wow.” Caity was staring at her in awe. “How did you know all that?”

“Seriously.” Taro shook his head. “Kai, that’s nuts. I’ve never even heard some of those words before. “Cal…”

“Callavanaei. Tesshebaei. Garrubanaei.” Kai nodded. “I picked up a book when we were in the Library.”

“You picked up twenty books the last time we went.”

“Well, yes. But this one just sort of dropped on me. It was all about the primary traits of the Ellehemaei by race.”

“Wow.” Renata got wide eyed. “Do you think…”

“Ssshhh,” Taro scolded. “Look, we won, or at least we won the losers. We’re going on the trip. That’s the important thing, right?”

“Right,” Kai grinned. She’d really done it. She’d really carried the field. Won the day. Being brilliant wasn’t a bad thing after all. They were going on the field trip!

“Right,” Nydia murmured, very quietly, beside her.


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