After meeting Nora, showing her how Spike was able to use his teleportation breath, and getting a taste of why she was called the Master of Teleportation Magic, the trio spent the rest of the day learning bits and pieces about the type of magic that she used in her daily life and being surprised when they suddenly teleported to a brand new location. Spike made notes on everything that they learned while they were with Nora, so he could study them and maybe replicate them with his own magic, something he highly doubted since he was nowhere near the level of power that Nora commanded, but at the very least this was interesting to him. Spyro and Ember, on the other hand, continued to listen to the Master as she went in depth into her type of magic, explaining what she did with her magic and how she was able to do what she did, though what interested them were the realms that Nora teleported all of them to, to show them the range of her power. In fact she also teleported them to a brand new land that they knew nothing about, a land that Nestor identified as the Junk Yard, a land that none of the dragons really talked about, and the small island they were on seemed to have a few slumbering machines scattered around the place, but before any of them could investigate the area Nora returned them to her study so they could talk about something else.
Something interesting that they learned about, that was different from what they had already learned, was that there were a few dragon eggs in the Artisans, Peace Keepers, and Magic Crafters homeworlds, where Nora revealed to Nestor and the trio that there were at least six by her count. Nestor and Cosmos then told the trio that the various fairies that they saw, in all five lands that the dragons lived on, assisted them in delivering the various dragon eggs to the homeworlds, but the eggs wouldn't hatch until the Year of the Dragon, an important event for the entirety of the Dragon Realms, as it was a week long festival where the adult dragons helped the fairies and received the eggs that contained the next generation of dragons inside them. Nestor also informed the trio that dragon eggs could be delivered before the Year of the Dragon came around, as they could see for themselves, but it was during the festival, a week long event that was incredibly important to the Dragon Realms and the other lands the dragons didn't live on, that the eggs would hatch and increase the number of dragons in the world. Of course that lead Spike to asking why there weren't any other young dragons running around the other homeworlds, since he figured that there would have been more than the eggs that contained him, Spyro, and Ember, only to find that they were the only three during the previous festival, but, at the same time, they also learned that the next festival, that was nearly four years away, was supposed to be even grander than what he and the other Leaders experienced when the trio hatched.
Nestor knew that the trio was disappointed in the fact that they were the only young dragons in the entirety of the Dragon Realms, but, at the same time, it was better than just having a single young dragon that only had his dragonfly as a companion, so he wasn't going to argue with the results, especially since things were going to change in a few years, when the next festival happened.
Once the trio was done with their visit to Nora's workshop, as she still had work to do on the remaining inactive portals that were scattered around the chamber, Cosmos and Nestor lead them back to the main part of the Magic Crafters homeworld, leaving Nora to do her work. As they made their way back to the dock, however, some of the other dragons that called this land home talked to them for a few moments, though it was mostly them discussing something with Cosmos while saying hello to the trio, before they departed and went about their business. Spike discovered that the other dragons were simply curious about what Cosmos had planned for the Magic Crafters in the future, as in what lessons they would be learning and whatnot, and they seemed satisfied with the answers, since they left with smiles on their faces, allowing him and his siblings to focus on returning to the dock so they could head home. Marco, like always, was waiting for them to return and moved out of the way as the trio climbed into the basket once more, indicating that they were ready to depart, before climbing in after them and giving the hot air balloon the fire it needed to take to the skies and begin the journey back to the land of the Artisans dragons. Nestor made sure to thank Cosmos for allowing the trio to spend some time with Nora, something the trio had done to both Nora and Cosmos and he was just making sure his friend knew how grateful he was for the time to be set aside for this, before taking off and following the hot air balloon, leaving Cosmos to return to his duties a few minutes later.
When the hot air balloon reached it's destination the trio climbed out and headed back to Town Square, to get some food before they started whatever they were going to do for the rest of the day, since they either relaxed after a visit to one of the other homeworlds or took some time to practice their skills, though Nestor was fine with whatever the trio decided to focus their energy on.
The days that followed were the same as they were after the trio visited one of the lands that the other Leaders watched over, as in Spike returned to his studies, split between what Argus had for him and what Cosmos had lent him for some time, so he could be ready for whatever the future brought them. Ember made sure that her combat skills were as good as they could be, since she was waiting for the day that all three of them matured so they could take on their adult forms and she could learn the combat skills that Titan and Trondo could show her, which would make her a better fighter and allow her to prepare for any threats that would surface, even if Nestor believed that there were no threats, thanks to what the Peace Keepers did for the Dragon Realms. Nestor also knew that Titan loved the dedication that Ember had to learning the various types of tricks and tactics she could use while she was in her current state, as being down on all fours like this limited her to a specific set of attacks and maneuvers, and he was waiting for the day where she and her siblings matured, as he was sure that Ember was actually a Peace Keepers dragon and not an Artisans dragon. Spyro continued to throw himself at the various professions that the other Artisans spent their lives working on, attempting to find something that he was talented in so he could be like his siblings, who had a better idea of what they would be doing in the future, and Nestor told him not to worry about it, as he would figure out his calling at some point in the future.
At the same time the trio made sure to practice their gliding, working with their dragonflies as they ran through the maze to boost their stamina, and occasionally worked on actually flying around the Flight Realm whenever Lucas came by for a visit, since he appeared to be the only one capable of opening the way for them.
Spyro, Spike, and Ember found that not much changed in their lives after their latest visit to the land of the Magic Crafters, as Nestor and the other Artisans didn't have much else to teach them, in the ways of how to be a dragon, and let them focus on whatever interested them. For Spike and Ember that was easy, as they would continue with what they had been doing after each of their visits to the various homeworlds, but there were days where they followed Spyro around and tried to help him figure out what his profession was going to be when he was older. The only thing that they didn't help him with were his pranks, indicating that they were getting old and that he needed to move on, so he decided to do one of the older pranks he had pulled and sheared some of Toasty's wool again, bringing back the 'kick me' message he had cut into the sheep's wool, before moving onto something else. Nestor and the other dragons were happy to see that both Spike and Ember were trying to pull Spyro away from the pranks that he was so used to doing, mostly because all of them had been messy in some manner and this would make it so the young dragon stopped his childish ways, but they would have to wait and see what happened in the future, since there was always the chance that he could go back to pranking when he was bored.
Something that interested some of the Artisans dragons was the fact that Spike and Ember continued to create odd sculptures whenever they gathered for a lesson in the various types of art, though they noticed that Ember had moved on from the odd scepter she had made a long time ago and was creating stone versions of the creatures that she and her siblings had seen so far. Spike, on the other hand, continued to make busts that were similar to the first one he had made, the scholar as some called it, though what he found to be interesting is that some of the busts he made had horns, some had tips on their backs that resembled wings that weren't like a dragon's, some had neither, and there was even one bust that had a longer horn and taller wing tips, along with some odd wavy hair. Spike really had no idea why he continued to make these things, even though they did get better the more he practiced working on the stones, but, while he was sure there was a reason for all of this, he couldn't think of one and pushed it to the back of his mind as he focused on the stones that were in front of him. Spyro continued to find that, while his skill seemed to improve with all of the arts that were available to him, none of them actually spoke to him like they did for the likes of Thor and Delbin, but that didn't stop him from trying to find what his passions were, something that annoyed him since both Spike and Ember had already figured out what they were going to do when they were older, effectively leaving him in the dust.
What surprised the trio once more was when their ninth birthday finally came around, as they were expecting Nestor to approach them and inform them of the next homeworld that they were going to be visiting for a brand new lesson, but this time around nothing like that happened. Rather it appeared that all of the Leaders were a little busy at the moment and were preparing for something, leaving the trio to decide that this meant that they could continue where they left off and improve on their own, so they could be prepared for whatever Nestor had in store for them, as they knew he had to be messing with them again. At first, as the days went by, they figured that it had to be a prank of sorts, like he and the other Artisans were getting back at Spyro or something, but then Spike determined that Nestor wasn't the type to do things like that, making his siblings wonder what was going on. When the days turned into weeks the trio determined that there was nothing left for them to learn at the moment, so they focused on mastering the various skills that they had been taught in the past, so they could be prepared for anything, and Spike made sure that he was finishing all of his studies, just in case they needed the information for something. Nestor, despite not having anything new to teach them, was happy to see that the trio was working hard to master the basic skills that all dragons knew, as well as taking some time off every now and then so they could relax and not be stressed out by what they were doing.
He also knew that they were waiting for the day when they finally matured and became adults, so they could truly tackle their chosen professions like all of the other dragons that came before them, and he was interested in seeing what happened when that day finally arrived.
Spyro, Spike, and Ember found that nothing exciting happened as the months went by after their ninth birthday, which was a little disappointing when they considered what they did after all of their previous birthdays, but all three of them kept themselves preoccupied by working on their various skills, relaxing every now and then, and sometimes just running around their homeworld, playing like children. In addition to all of that they also assisted the other Artisans dragons with whatever they needed help with, be it their own professions or just arranging things for the various meals that everyone ate together, and they found that their elders were very happy with them helping out every now and then, instead of just waiting for Nestor or someone else to tell them when a meal was ready. They also noticed that there were two dragon eggs located in the Stone Hill area, away from where they usually slept during the night, which made them curious about the dragons that would eventually hatch from them, while also making them wonder how many more eggs their homeworld would get before the Year of the Dragon Festival happened. Nestor knew they were curious about the eggs, since this was their first time seeing them from the other side, and watched them for a few seconds as they stared at the spherical eggs, with the bottom side being slightly larger than the side that was pointed at the sky, though he knew that the trio would be excited when the eggs finally hatched.
Another thing the trio discovered was that there were a few beings like the Balloonists visiting Nestor every now and then, though they weren't dressed up in the gear that Marco and his friends wore, as they seemed to be wearing a suit and some odd uniforms, though after the third visit their curiosity got the better of them and they approached Nestor when the strangers left, as they were curious as to what was going on.
"Um, Nestor, who was that?" Spyro asked, though at the same time he and his siblings came to a stop near him, which showed their Leader that they were interested in what Nestor had been doing, especially since they were usually told what was going on every now and then, regardless of whether or not they were involved with the event.
"A reporter for the Dragon News Network," Nestor replied, as he knew that the trio was curious about what they had seen and he was eager to tell them what would be happening in the future, especially since the other Artisans dragons would be interested in hearing about this later on, when he finally told them the news, "basically they send out reporters and make documentaries on whatever might interest the residents of the other lands, the lands that we don't live on, and right now they're interested in talking to us about the peace that we have been enjoying for a long time, and maybe ask a question or two about Gnasty Gnorc."
"Gnasty Gnorc?" Ember asked, because the way Nestor talked made her think that the person in question was a threat that the Peace Keepers should take care of at some point, though that, in turn, made her wonder why Titan and the others hadn't already taken care of him.
"He's an exile living in the Junk Yard," Spike answered, showing Nestor that he had done some research into the events that had come before them, before they hatched to be exact, because he was interested in what caused the dragons to call this land home and had found an interesting tome about a thousand years ago, before he returned to the topic that they were talking about at the moment, "I'm not sure how long ago it was when Nestor and the other Leaders banished him to the Junk Yard, but they did so because Gnasty Gnorc was causing mischief for the Dragon Realms, didn't want to abide by the rules that had been set by the Leaders, and he had a lack of respect for the various dragons that lived across the homeworlds, as he coveted the treasure we possess, until eventually he was banished to the Junk Yard, which is where he's been living for a long time. The reporter likely heard something about Gnasty Gnorc and is going to try to either verify or disprove what he's doing in the land that he rules over, or at least that is what I would do if I wasn't a dragon and was heading to one of the homeworlds for a special interview."
"Either way, the reporter was making sure that the date we established with his network is still valid, that nothing has changed and that he'll have his interview on the day we agreed on." Nestor stated, though at this point he was no longer surprised by what Spike knew and didn't know, as the young dragon had the potential to be one of the greatest scholars they had ever seen, up there with the scholar that created the library in Dark Hollow, and he was sure that Spike knew about some of the older events that they really didn't talk about, before focusing on the topic they had asked about, "I told him that nothing has changed and that the interview is still scheduled for the date that we set some time ago, so now all he has to do is get everything he needs and come back in a few months, since it appears that he has some other locations to visit first, before focusing his attention on us and the peace that we've brought to the Dragon Realms."
"Can we do anything to help you guys prepare for the interview?" Spyro asked, because while the event sounded a little boring, something that he was alone in thinking since Spike and Ember seemed interested in it, he knew that Nestor and the others would appreciate a little help in getting ready.
"You can play around and enjoy yourselves, since we don't have to worry about setting anything up." Nestor said, as he knew that the trio wanted this to go perfectly, now that they knew the interview was happening, but the reality was that none of them actually needed the trio to help them out, as everything that would be used that day would be from the interviewer and his crew.
For a moment Spyro, Spike, and Ember seemed a little disappointed that there wasn't anything they could do to help Nestor and the others when the interview happened, though that was before they determined that there was something they could do, as simply playing around and enjoying themselves would show the interviewer, and those that were watching what was going on, that they were enjoying the peace that their homeworlds were experiencing. Nestor was a little surprised at first, since he wasn't expecting them to continue to offer their assistance when the interview happened, before he chuckled and told them that, since they had some ideas in mind already, he would accept their help and that he was sure the other dragons would be grateful as well. None of them had to talk during the interview, unless the reporter wanted to ask them some specific questions before he and his crew moved on, but from what he could tell all three of them were eager for the interview to happen, just so they could see what sort of questions were asked and how the dragons responded to the questions. Nestor also informed them that the reporter and his crew were going to be hitting all five of the homeworlds, just to see how all the clans were taking to the peace they were enjoying, though he only told them so they wouldn't be surprised when they discovered that Marco was gone after the reporter left, though the trio nodded their heads, to show that they understood what they were being told, before returning to what they had been doing earlier, all while keeping the information about the interview at the back of their minds.
After that day the trio found that nothing exciting really happened, so they returned to what they did in the past and, on occasion, helped the other Artisans dragons as they moved things around, either getting ready for the interview or just moving things in general. Ember continued to work on her combat skills, impressing those around her with what she was able to do, despite the fact that many of them didn't know much about the various skills and techniques she showed off, another example of the fact that the Artisans dragons were pacifists and didn't fight, which also connected to the reason that they trusted the Peace Keepers so much. Spyro worked on finding out what sort of profession he was interested in, when he wasn't busy helping the other dragons that he had pranked in the past, but for the most part he still wasn't having any luck figuring out what he wanted to do when he was older, which only made him wonder how Spike and Ember were able to determine their professions so quickly. Nestor, hearing how annoyed Spyro was over the situation, reminded him that sometimes it took a while for a dragon to manifest their particular profession, as there were times where one of them would find their profession before they turned five years old, while other times a dragon could be ten before that happened to them, he just had to be patient and his profession would make itself known. Spike, of course, added a new topic to the list of topics that he was working on, that being getting more information on Gnasty Gnorc and what he did that caused the dragons to banish him to the Junk Yard, though Argus and the others saw no harm in letting him read those tomes, something that Nestor was in agreement with, and helped him when he needed assistance.
Eventually the days turned into weeks again and the trio went about their lives as if nothing had changed, practicing their various skills and working on the professions that they knew they were interested in, or taking a few days off to assist Spyro in his endeavors, all while waiting for the day of the interview to arrive.
It wasn't until the day after the day of their tenth birthday that they found out that the interview would be in a few days, causing the three of them to hurry as they assisted the other Artisans dragons in preparing their homeworld for the arrival of the reporter and his crew, as they now understood how important this day was and were going to do everything in their power to make it as great as they possibly could. They learned that Argus and the others were happy to have their assistance, especially since they discovered that the interview would be taking place in Dark Hollow, an odd choice when they knew that Stone Hill or even the central area would have been a better place for it, but they weren't going to argue and continued helping everyone get things set up. Spike made sure that all of the tomes and scrolls were returned to their proper places, so he and the other scholars could continue their studies once the interview was over and the reporter headed out for the next homeworld, but for now they were ensuring that they gave a good impression to the other lands, about the peace that they were enjoying. Something that Spyro noticed while they were working was that Toasty glared at all of them from the area around the portal that lead to Nevin's castle, whenever a dragon happened to be in the area that was near the portal, but that's all he did, eventually making him forget about the sheep and return to what he was doing, as he could sort out Toasty later.
A few days later Spyro, Spike, and Ember, who were just minding their own business in one of the upper levels of Dark Hollow, stopped and watched as the reporter and his crew entered the realm that they were in, though from what Nestor had told them the reporter's name was Bob, though as everything was set up, and both Lindar and Astor moved into position, the trio spotted a sheep and decided to play around for a few minutes while Bob asked his questions.
"Okay, we're rolling." Bob announced, informing the dragons that were near him that they were finally getting things underway, especially since they had a number of lands to visit and not a lot of time to get the interview done, though that was when he focused on the dragons that had agreed to do the interview, and found that Astor, the oldest dragon he had met, had fallen asleep on him, but decided to roll with it, "What can you tell us about the Dragon Realms?"
"Huh... Oh! It's been peaceful here in the five homeworlds, or is it six?" Astor answered, showing Spike and his siblings that some dragons considered the Junk Yard as one of the lands that they could live on, even though no dragons lived over there at the moment, though as Astor shrugged, to indicate that it didn't matter in the long run, Spyro headbutted the sheep that they had see earlier with a smile on his face, before heading to where Spike and Ember were playing, "For a dragon's age, we now have twelve thousand treasure... or was it fourteen thousand?"
"What about this G-Nasty G-Norc character?" Bob asked, where the trio noted that he said the name like 'Guh-Nasty Guh-Norc', something that would have likely annoyed the person in question if he was watching the broadcast, but what he said next really interested them for a few seconds, "Now, I have information that says he's uncovered a magic spell that can turn gems into warriors for his cause."
Spike glanced at Spyro and Ember for a second, as none of them had heard of a spell that could transform the various colored gemstones that they had seen, the ones that Nestor had used during their various lessons in the past, into soldiers that could be used against the Dragon Realms, which only made them wonder how Bob had discovered that piece of information and why he didn't tell the Leaders about it sooner.
"I'll take that question." Lindar said, as he knew that there were times where Astor got tired and couldn't concentrate on what was happening around him, and today happened to be one of those days, so he was more than willing to step in for the elderly dragon and take this question, "Gnasty Gnorc is many things, depending on who you ask and what they know about him, but the truth is of the matter is that he is a simple creature. He has been contained in a remote world and is no threat to the dragon kingdom... besides, he is ugly, and this way we don't have to look at him."
"Huh, never knew that Lindar was the type to care about someone's appearance." Spyro commented, as they had never heard the dragon make a comment like that in the past, not while they were growing up anyway, but he also kept his voice low so only his siblings could hear what he had to say, who were also surprised by what Lindar had said and were thankful that Gnasty Gnorc wasn't watching this broadcast.
Ember glanced up at the sky for a moment, just as Spyro was finishing his comment, before she noticed a green light of some kind coming down at the area they were in, causing her to knock both Spyro and Spike to the ground, though at the same time the light broke apart into a large number of smaller lights, which struck Lindar, Astor, and the other dragons that were in the area, encasing them in a green crystalline statue that resembled a dragon.
"What in the world was that?" Spike asked, though even as he said that he stared at the statue that was in front of them for a few seconds, as he had never seen anything like it before, and he was sure neither of his siblings had seen this spell either, which made him confused as to what was going on.
"Well, I had some information that I was planning on telling Nestor before I left, to warn him about the potential threat that Gnasty Gnorc posed, but it seems like that won't be necessary anymore," Bob stated, where Spyro and Spike glanced at him for a few seconds, as the reporter was in the process of making sure the broadcast was cut off, but it seemed to be taking longer than he thought it would, "It appears that he has found another powerful spell, one that can turn adult dragons into solid crystalline statues, or at least imprison them in such a state."
That was another spell that Spike hadn't heard about, one that was incredibly dangerous given the fact that Gnasty Gnorc fired it from a long distance away and it sought out everyone in the Artisans homeworld within mere seconds, which meant he could fire it again and again until every dragon, in all five homeworlds, were trapped in this state, meaning that it was up to him and his siblings to rescue them, before he turned towards his siblings and noticed something odd.
"Ember, are you okay?" Spyro asked, because he had noticed the same thing as well, that Ember was in the middle of what appeared to be an angry growl and she was clawing at the ground for a couple of seconds, something he was sure Argus and the other scholars would fuss over in the future.
"He turned everyone we knew, everyone we cared about, into these green crystalline statues," Ember replied, her tone revealing that she was not okay with this turn of events, nor was she okay with Bob withholding this information from Nestor and the other Leaders, before she turned around and headed in the direction of the exit portal, "Come on, we've got work to do, before Gnasty Gnorc realizes that someone is trying to undo what he just did."
Spyro and Spike nodded their heads as they followed after their sister, knowing that this wasn't what they were expecting when they were told about the interview, but at the same time it appeared that a grand adventure was starting and there was nothing they could do to stop it.