After their visit to the Magic Crafters homeworld, and returned to the Artisans homeworld a few hours later, Spyro, Spike and Ember showed that they had learned their lesson from their first visit to one of the other homeworlds, as they didn't make any attempts to replicate what they had seen and continued with the lessons that Nestor had for them. Nestor was pleasantly surprised by that fact, as he was used to the trio making an attempt after they witnessed something, which he had seen after they returned from the Peace Keepers homeworld, as Ember and Spyro had tried to replicate the charge and dodge techniques and had nearly hurt Spyro in the process, but right now they weren't doing that. It was hard to tell if they were holding back because they had no idea how to wield magic, where any practice would have dangerous results that would require Cosmos or one of the other Magic Crafters to fix up, or if they knew that they would learn about magic in the future and were waiting for the day their lessons came. Either way Nestor was happy with them understanding the situation and learning from their mistakes, because it showed that they were getting smarter and that they were maturing a little over the years, but he said nothing as they returned to the main area of their home and let the trio head off to do whatever they wanted to do, as he wanted them to rest before bothering them with the lessons he was teaching them.
Spike, as he expected, returned to the Dark Hollow library the following day, where he sat down with Argus and the other scholars and continued his research, though this time he also looked into the few applications of magic that existed outside the Magic Crafters homeworld, such as the entrance and exit portals for each realm. Nestor knew that Spike wasn't going to actually look into magic, since that would give him an unfair advantage over his siblings when they started their lessons with Cosmos, but looking into how magic was used in the other homeworlds was something that interested him and Nestor didn't see any harm in it. Besides, it ultimately wasn't up to him as to what Spike researched and studied, as that was up to the young dragon and the scholars he was friends with, as Argus and the others generally put off anything too dangerous for later, when Spike was older to be exact and could understand the information better, so he was just fine with letting the group do whatever they wanted, leaving him to focus on Spyro and Ember. There was also the fact that Argus promised him they would be more careful in the future, as to no repeat the event where Spike tried to eat a gemstone on accident, because none of them wanted to break more of his teeth, something that Nestor was happy to hear, since he didn't what that to happen either.
While he was doing that Spyro returned to what he had been doing before the trip to Cosmos' homeworld, and that was looking at the book he had been given while determining whether or not he could pull off some of the pranks he found inside the pages, even if his first few attempts weren't that successful. Toasty, on the other hand, wasn't too keen on Spyro trying out his pranks, whether or not he was the target of one of them, and went to great lengths to be somewhere else whenever Spyro was in the mood to prank someone, though Nestor assumed that a few of them were designed to have someone near him to watch the event unfold, as if he was trying to make the unique sheep happy. Nestor felt that it was a kind gesture, that the young dragon was trying to get Toasty to get over his grumpy nature and smile, something that Argus and the other scholars had never seen before, but despite his attempts Toasty refused to be anywhere near him when he was in the mood to prank someone. Of course, as Nestor predicted, that caused Spyro to eventually give up in his attempts to make Toasty happy and he returned to including the sheep in some of his pranks, though at the very least he only messed with the sheep every now and then, like once or twice a month, showing the sheep that he everyone was equal in his eyes at the moment.
What was really interesting was that Ember remained true to what she had shown after the visit to Titan's homeworld, and that was the fact that she didn't even attempt to practice the moves that Titan and Trondo had shown her and her siblings during the visit. Rather she spent her days relaxing in the central area of their homeworld, sometimes followed Nestor when he was working on something, just to see what he was working on and if there was anything she could do to help him, and there were a few instances where she visited the library in Dark Hollow, just to see if Spike had found anything interesting that she might find interesting as well. She didn't share Spike's interest in all the scrolls and books that the library had to offer, Argus and the others knew that since the beginning and it was only confirmed every time they saw her, but at the very least she seemed happy that Spike had something to keep himself occupied, even if it meant looking into old scrolls and tomes for the knowledge he was looking for, something that made her brother smile, as he enjoyed his little adventures in the library and didn't let anything sour his mood. Other than that Ember watched Spyro try out his various pranks, following the methods described in the book that he carried with him, where some pranks failed, due to one of the other dragons messing it up and asking Spyro to clean up the mess, or succeeding in some manner, though even if Spyro ran away he was hauled back if there was a mess.
In addition to what the trio did in their free time Nestor also made sure they stuck to the various lessons that he was trying to make sure they learned for the future, though he was happy to see that the trio was doing a good job learning how to glide and were making good time in running through the maze. Lindar continued to avoid telling the trio their times, to keep them on the track they were following, and while he assumed that the trio would have been annoyed of that fact they continued to surprise him, as all three of them got over their earlier annoyance and kept running the maze, trying to overcome each other in the process. All of the other Artisans dragons were also impressed by how well the trio took to the challenges that he offered them, showing that they were improving their skills and, at some point in the future, he'd have to stop and start an entirely new lesson to keep them occupied, though for the moment they still needed to complete the lessons he had started them on, before he taught any of them something else. He did intend to take the trio into the flight area at some point, so show them what it was like to fly for the first time and maybe show off a few tricks while he was at it, something that he was sure they would like when that day came, but for now he knew that they needed to finish their current lessons before they started doing anything else.
It was a month after their visit to the Magic Crafters homeworld that Spyro, Spike, and Ember found themselves back in Cosmos' land, following Nestor as he lead them to the area that Cosmos wanted them to come to, though they had a fairly good idea why they had come back so soon after their first visit. During their last visit they had been told that at some point in the future the three of them would be learning about magic, as in the various types of magic and not how to wield that power, since they were still too young for what Cosmos had in mind, despite the fact that this was different than what Titan wanted to do with them, but they respected the decisions of their elders and walked behind Nestor. Spike, of course, was the most excited of the trio, because this was something new for him to learn about, even if he didn't have any talent in using magic, and he was eager to add any information they learned today to his ever growing collection of knowledge, which would make Argus and the other scholars happy at his progress. Spyro and Ember were also interested in seeing if they had any talent when it came to magic, since it was entirely possible that one or more of them might be able to learn how to wield the power that Cosmos and the other Magic Crafters were capable of controlling, even if it would take them years to get to the level that someone like Altair was at.
While they followed Nestor, however, the trio spotted some creatures off in the distance, no doubt practicing their magic in a location where they wouldn't bother anyone else, though from what the trio could see all three of the beings they spotted were like the Balloonists, in terms of body style, but two of them were wearing green robes and the third was wearing a blue robe... and it appeared that they might be disagreeing about something, but from this distance it was hard to tell what was going on over there.
"There you are!" a voice said, where the group turned and found Cosmos standing nearby, as it appeared that he had been visiting Alpine Ridge for some reason and had just returned from whatever he was doing, though he tapped his staff against the ground and beckoned for them to follow him as he started to lead the way towards the area that they would be visiting this time around, "Sorry I couldn't meet you at the dock, one of the wizards of Alpine Ridge asked me to look at something they were working on, something they didn't want me to tell anyone about, and the visit took longer than what we were expecting it to take."
"It's no big deal, we were just wandering around while we waited for you." Spyro replied, as that was sort of what Nestor appeared to be doing, walking around the Magic Crafters homeworld so he and his siblings could see the sights as they waited for Cosmos to come find them, before he turned his attention to something else and beckoned with his head for a second, "What's with those guys over there?"
"Oh, you mean the Elder Wizard arguing with a Green Druid, with a lesser druid standing nearby?" Cosmos asked, as it was quite easy for him to see what Spyro was inquiring about, where he sighed for a moment and looked at his staff for a second or two, before turning back towards the group as they paused for the moment, "Don't worry, it's common for a wizard and a druid to disagree about something, even go through a magic duel to determine who is correct on the subject that they were discussing, often with a lesser druid and a lesser wizard standing nearby, so it's a little off the lesser druid isn't there yet, so they might not be dueling. If they do start doing that, however, we either let them finish, as stopping them might result in another duel a day or two later, or stop them if the spells get out of hand, but the latter has only happened twice since we settled on this land and started learning about the magic we possess."
"So you leave them alone and they might fight each other at some point?" Ember inquired, though while they were stopped she noticed that Spike was making a note of the beings that were off in the distance before they moved forward, with the blue robed figure being the Elder Wizard, the tall green robed figure being the Green Druid, and the light green robed figure, who was carrying a wooden staff, had to be the lesser druid.
"That is correct." Cosmos stated, though as he said that he started walking again and the group followed after him once more, as they were interested in where they were going this time around, but he made sure to wait long enough so Spike could finish his notes on the magical beings he had mentioned, no doubt with a page for the lesser wizard that wasn't with the others, before moving forward, "Don't worry, someone is watching them from afar at the moment and, if their duel gets out of hand and they start to threaten everyone around them, the dragon in question will step in and stop them before they go too far, but like I said, that has only happened twice in the past and we don't see it happening ever again, regardless of the arguments they get into."
Spike was a little interested in seeing what happened if the pair that was arguing reached the point where they started fighting each other, as it was something that he hadn't read about during his earlier studies and was curious to see it go down, but right now it appeared that neither of them were going to reach that point, so he shifted his attention to the path in front of him as he followed Cosmos and the others to another part of this homeworld. What he discovered was that they were heading back to the portal that would take them to Altair's area, where he could peacefully manipulate the weather around him without any major interruptions, but when they reached the area near the portal he discovered he was only partly correct about where they were going. The reason behind that sudden change was because Cosmos walked over to the rock wall that was near the portal to Altair's temple and waved his staff at the wall, where Spike and his siblings watched as a portion of the wall seemed to disappear before their eyes, revealing a tunnel that they had never been in before, before the Magic Crafters Leader smiled and stepped out of the way. Nestor nodded as the trio charged into the new tunnel that had appeared before them, as they were eager to see if there was anything new for them to see, and once all five of them were inside the tunnel Cosmos waved his staff again and sealed the wall behind them, before following Spyro and his siblings.
What they discovered was the fact that the tunnel had a few triangular shaped openings on their right, which seemed to be windows that were made in the style that the Magic Crafters preferred to use, before they reached a portal, one that transported them to a temple that was built around a lone mountain peak. The temple had a stone walkway that lead the way towards a wooden frame, one that rested around an iron door that had what Spike assumed were magical symbols on it's face, and when they reached the door Cosmos tapped on it and it opened before their eyes. That, in turn, revealed a diagonal walkway that allowed them to walk up to a level of the temple that was above them, a level that had a number of paths for them to take, but instead of running around and getting lost they followed Cosmos as he turned to the right and headed to what appeared to be a classroom of some sort. The reason Spyro, Spike, and Ember thought that was because of the wooden desks that rested in a row, going from the left side of the room to the right side, and while they came to that conclusion Cosmos beckoned to the decks and the trio sat behind them, putting a little separation between them in the process, leaving Nestor to stand by the entrance while Cosmos took his position in front of the desks.
If they hadn't been told what they were going to do today, as in learn about magic and maybe seeing if they had the talent to wield this power, coming to what appeared to be a classroom was the best indicator of what they would be doing, especially since the trio discovered some small crystal orbs on the desks they were sitting behind.
"Now then, like I told you a month ago, magic is a type of energy that flows throughout our world," Cosmos said, as he felt that starting at the beginning, with what he had told them during their first visit, was the best way to start things off, because it would allow them to recall what he had told them, before getting into the new information he knew they were interested in learning about, "and the Magic Crafters are one of the few groups of beings in the world that can wield the energy, though it is natural for us to be able to do this, even if we have to devote some of our time to learning what type of magic we are skilled in. Altair, as you learned, is skilled at manipulating the weather around him, while others, such as myself, are skilled at using our magic to manipulate our surroundings, as in revealing hidden passages, changing walkways in a matter of seconds, and whatever else we feel like manipulating. There are even dragons who don't necessarily take to using a specific type of magic, rather they learn everything they can about the various types of magic that are available to them before deciding what they want to focus on mastering, like Cedric, a dragon you haven't met yet, for example, as he's one of the best instructors we have and he hasn't picked a type of magic to master."
"And what types of magic are there in the world?" Spike asked, though at the same time he made a note about Cedric, as he was sure that he and his siblings should try to meet him one day and see what sort of information they could learn from him, before focusing on the answer that he knew was coming.
"Well, to start us off we have what is called Hand and Wand Magic," Cosmos replied, where he held out his staff for a second, so the trio could get a better look at it and take in the material that went into it's construction, even if they didn't recognize the materials at the moment, before focusing on what he wanted to tell the trio, "this type of magic is the basics of what a magic user, regardless of whether they can naturally use magic or are just starting to learn how to wield this power, start with, and it is often considered the weakest magic in the world, but that all depends on how much time you put into trying to master this type of magic. Beings who use this type of magic either channel the magical energy around them into their hands, like Altair did when he was showing you his Cloud Puppet routine, or they have a special magical item, like my staff for example, that allows them to channel the energy around them without the energy passing through their body, like what I did to the wall earlier or the walkways during your first visit a month ago. I might use my staff in the vast majority of the spells that I work with, but there are instances where I will set it aside and use my hands to complete the spell I'm going to cast, though the truth is that there is no difference in power between using your hands or something like a staff or a smaller wand, it's just what each dragon and being prefers to use."
"So, does that mean the type of magic you are skilled in using is Hand and Wand Magic?" Ember inquired, because based on what they just learned it seemed like that was the type of magic that Cosmos had devoted his time and effort to mastering, while the other Magic Crafters dragons had mastered different types of magic.
"Not quite. The type of magic that I'm skilled in is Transmogrification," Cosmos explained, though even as he said that his staff returned to him and he waved it at the wall behind him, where the trio watched as the marble wall shifted before their eyes, becoming an opening that lead outside, complete with a small balcony for them to stand on if they so desired, before waving his staff again as the wall returned to it's original design, as if the change had never happened, "this type of magic allows the user to change and alter something, be it inanimate objects, like the crystal spheres on your desks, or even living creatures, like changing a sheep or rabbit into a flower or another creature."
"Wait, so does that mean someone could change a sheep into a monster and use it to terrorize someone else?" Spyro asked, as while he and his siblings were interested in this type of magic, especially since Cosmos' skills had allowed him to make the changes in a matter of seconds, he was curious if someone had attempted to use this type of magic against the dragons or their enemies.
"It's possible to do something like that, but we don't teach dragons, or the wizards and druids, how to do something like that, for safety reasons." Cosmos stated, where he raised his left hand to his chin for a moment, showing that he was thinking about what he had been asked and that he was thinking about what he had seen in the past, before he focused on the trio a few seconds later, "The reason we don't teach that sort of thing is that the monsters that ended up being created were always mindless and always smashed up the area around them, until someone cast the spell to revert the poor creature back to their original form, usually leaving them more aggressive than they had been moments ago. There's also the fact that some dragons were hurt the last time we tried something like that, because we weren't expecting a young wizard to do something like that, so we decided to stop teaching that sort of thing a few hundred years ago, even though we keep the spell that counters such a thing around, just in case we encounter a creature like that. There are other forms of Transmogrification, besides changing a wall into an opening and a balcony or changing a rabbit into a monster, as even Altair uses this type of magic, though he focuses on changing the weather, hence why we call him a weather manipulator, instead of a Transmogrification master... and there are other elements that one can shift and manipulate, as long as they have the knowledge and experience to do so."
"Okay, we won't pester you about that sort of thing," Spike commented, though he did make a note to find the spell to counter the transformations, because in the off chance that one of them had the talent to become a wizard it would be a good weapon to have, just in case they ran into a monster that used to be something else, "What about the other types of magic you haven't mentioned yet?"
"Well, there's Prestidigitation, or, to put it simpler terms, magic tricks," Cosmos answered, where he noticed the trio had raised their eyebrows the moment he revealed what the title of the next type of magic meant, though he chuckled for a second as he considered what he was going to tell them, "to be more precise, there are two types of users of this sort of magic, those that do so for entertainment and those that use their magic to hide important items or clues to where an item of worth is hidden. Zantor is one of the masters of the Prestidigitation type of magic, though you'll never actually see him perform his spells unless he is actually looking for an audience, as most of the time he is practicing a simple card trick with that deck of his, which is just his way of thinking of the next spell he wants to use and what he needs to get it done, and he makes sure that only two or three dragons know what he's doing at any given moment."
"Basically we need to see him to learn more about this type of magic." Ember stated, as that was what she was getting from what Cosmos was saying, that he didn't know very much about this specific type of magic and that he knew someone who might be able to explain things better.
"When he's not busy." Cosmos replied, as he knew that Zantor hated being interrupted when he was in the middle of his preparations for his spells, though that was a shared feeling that all Magic Crafters dragons felt, especially the ones that were working with the higher level spells, before he got back to the topic at hand, "The next type of magic is simple, as it is the art of Levitation, where the wizard in question can lift anything from a small desk to a large rock into the air and make it float there for an undetermined amount of time, which is based on their skill and experience in working with magic. Many wizards, be they dragon or otherwise, tend to learn about this type of magic and then move onto another type, the type that becomes the one they specialize in, but there are a few masters in the art of wielding Levitation magic, where they can lift incredibly heavy object and even dragons into the air, much to the surprise of the dragon that they decided to cast their spell on. After that we have the various spells that don't fit into a specific type of magic, not yet at the very least, though some of the Magic Crafters refer to this type of magic as the 'Combat' type, such as throwing fireballs at someone, summoning a storm of ice shards, shooting lightning from one's fingers, and a number of other spells, though you'll find that most wizards focus on the other types and leave this one to the end of their studies."
"What about the portals? What type of magic do they rely on?" Spike asked, because that was something that had been on his mind since he first started reading about the portals, even if his knowledge was incomplete on the subject, and this was the best time to get the information he was after.
"Teleportation magic," Cosmos answered, though his tone revealed that this was the last type of magic that he and the other wizards knew about, for the time being anyway, causing Spike and his siblings to listen carefully, even if Spike was the only one really interested in what they were learning, "This type of magic is basically the art of moving from one position to another, without walking or flying, so instead of a trip taking an hour or two you could just wait until a few minutes before a meeting and then teleport over to your destination, though this, like the other types, depends on how skilled you are with this type of magic. Those that are unskilled with this type of magic will only be able to move short distances, like a few steps from where they were standing, or might need a special teleportation pad for them to lock onto when they cast the spell, though those that are truly skilled with this type of magic don't need all of that, as they can move freely and with little effort. There are a few masters of the art of Teleportation magic, just like there are masters of the other types of magic, but unlike the other types there is always someone who can weave their magic into the magical portals you see in the homeworlds, connecting them to the various realms of the lands we call home, but she's been rather busy lately and insists that we leave her to her work."
"Wait, 'she'? You mean I'm not the only female dragon in the five homeworlds?" Ember inquired, because this was the first time she and her siblings were hearing anything about there being another female dragon in the Dragon Realms, and she could tell that her brothers were also surprised by this information, even if Spike was less surprised than she and Spyro were at the moment.
"Oh, there are between twenty to thirty female dragons in the Dragon Realms, you just haven't had the opportunity to meet them, or Nora, yet." Nestor stated, revealing that the name of the dragon that Cosmos was talking about was 'Nora', even if that caused Spike to make a note about meeting her in the future, after meeting everyone else that they were learning about in their various lessons, before Nestor glanced at Cosmos, "Well, now that the lecture part is out of the way, don't you think it's time we moved onto the test?"
"Indeed. We've spent a good portion of time talking about magic," Cosmos said, where he focused on the trio once more and gestured to the crystal spheres that were resting in front of them, causing them to glance at the spheres as they wondered what was so special about them, something that he was going to reveal right now, "What the three of you are going to do is touch the sphere in front of you with both of your hands, or front legs, and focus on emptying your mind as best as you can. The reason for this is because these spheres are enchanted to determine if a dragon or someone else has any magical talent inside them, and if you have some the clear sphere will resonate with your latent talent, otherwise they will remain in their current state, regardless of what you try to do... and depending on what happens next, in regards to what the spheres do, we'll know whether or not you need to worry about coming back for lessons on how to wield magic and mastering the spells we've unlocked so far."
Spyro, Spike, and Ember glanced at each other for a few seconds, as they were curious as to what the spheres might show them, did they have talent or would learning the spells be a waste of their time, before they turned their attention to the spheres in front of them and followed the instructions they had been given. Once the three of them had grasped their sphere, just like Cosmos had said, they closed their eyes and focused on trying to empty their minds, which was much harder than they thought it would be, but they tried their best regardless, as they were interested in seeing the results of the test. For a moment the trio didn't feel anything strange happening to them, as they were expecting the magic of the sphere to interact with their bodies, but since Cosmos hadn't told them about the process it was hard to tell what they were supposed to be waiting for, causing them to remain silent as they waited for something to happen. A few seconds later Spike felt a sneeze starting to form, one that would break his concentration if he let it happen, but before he could do anything to stop it he sneezed and felt some heat in front of his face, which was surprising since he had no idea how to use his fire breath at the moment. Cosmos and Nestor, on the other hand, witnessed the event unfold within a matter of seconds, as the moment that Spike sneezed he breathed fire on the sphere, completely on accident, but what was odd was the coloration of the flames, and the fact that the sphere was missing seconds later.
What was even more surprising was the fact that there was a thud in the tunnel leading to this room and Nestor walked down it, only to return a few seconds later with a crystal sphere, one that had a green flame inside it for some odd reason, making Cosmos wonder what was going on, before noticing that Ember's sphere was bright as well and that Spyro's was less bright than Ember and Spike's spheres.
"Okay, that's enough for today." Cosmos said, causing the trio to stop what they were doing and open their eyes, which was when Spyro tilted his head as he looked at the dim light inside his sphere, Ember seemed surprised that her's was even brighter than her brother's, and Spike was shocked when he saw what happened to his, "I think it's safe to say that, despite the differing levels of talent you three have, we can teach all three of you the basics at the very least, though I know the other Magic Crafters are going to be shocked when they hear that a dragon teleported a sphere down the hallway leading to this room, without knowing how to do any of that."
"I did what?!" Spike exclaimed, as he had been confused as to why his sphere wasn't in front of him when he opened his eyes, since it had appeared in Nestor's hand all of a sudden, but now he had an idea of what happened, even if he didn't fully understand what Cosmos was talking about.
"We'll talk about that in the future, when it's time to teach you the basics." Cosmos replied, though at the same time he smiled for a moment, because despite the fact that he had been caught off guard by what Spike had done, breathing fire on the sphere and somehow teleporting it down the hallway, this just meant that one of them might have the talent to learn more than the basics, and that wasn't counting the coloration of Ember's sphere, "For now the three of you should enjoy the rest of your visit to this homeworld, before you have to head back home and continue Nestor's lessons... I'll be ready to teach you how to wield magic in the future."
Spike tilted his head in confusion for a moment, as he was certain that Cosmos would have given him an explanation on what he had done, but at the same time the thought that one day he and his siblings would come here to actually learn magic put a smile on his face, as he'd figure out what had happened on his own in the future, and he was looking forward to seeing what happened when their lessons finally started.