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Mlamani straightened his brand-new scientist's robes as he, Rilaru, and (most importantly) Oranaan climbed the slope outside the City of Lights. They'd been friends since second form, but this was important. He and Rilaru had examined the tree and found nothing to disprove their theory. Now they brought Oranaan to see it as well. If they could convince Oranaan, they'd have a chance to explain their theory to Emeroma.Author's Notes
Mlamani tried not to look at the ruined towers as they climbed; there were scientists and students clustered around, but no soldiers. The mystery had brought experts from various regions of the Empire to consult with Emeroma and her team; any Purist could get in just by donning a stolen robe. Mlamani and Rilaru were certain it was mad--or at least terribly shortsighted--for the Empire not to have a big army presence, and monitors to check everyone's licenses on every streetcorner. But no one listened to them--no one thought they were brilliant. That's where Oranaan came in.
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