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Nyduly Academy in Hamar provided the best primary education in the universe. Four of the five elohim each chose three children to attend. This year Talishi-Chokhmah selected the two nephilim children of the late Aldred Firegem, Nelchael and hyz sister Bikol. Talishi also allowed Abdiel Bellon (heir to what remained of that defeated House) to attend the Academy.

El Shaddai, speaking through the Ark of the Covenant at Taurus City, selected three commoner jan who were orphaned by Blackseed's violent invasion of mainland Menkal. Their names were Inanna, Muran, and Dafla.

Binah just before his jen avatar Lilith was killed at Mercury, chose a common yin named Murmi who was the daughter of a Beater. Binah also selected a jen named Kishar, the eldest offspring of Countez Berek Moriz, who was the de-facto ruler of the Menkal rump-state from Elendal Island. And Binah enrolled Hope in the academy. Yeshua introduced Hope as one of the bene elohim, another daughter of the now-deceased Lilith Gervasi and Robyn Lokken, but so far no one knew what her special talent would turn out to be.

Yeshua Bat-El chose three humans. Two of these had made their way to the Land We Know by accident, having chosen to swim in the Earth end of the Sacred Pool. One of these visitors was named Malekwa, a member of what he knew only as "The People". This boy found the secret pond in the Green River Gorge in 1848 and dove in, trying to find the bottom. What he found instead was Yeshua, who used sign language and much food to entice Malekwa into staying for a while. Yeshua set about trying to teach him English, and the kid was already eight before he was ready to start school.

The second visitor was a white American girl named Inge Lange, who was part of a wagon train passing by in 1867. Like Malekwa, Inge came to the Land via the Sacred Pool, but unlike the boy, Inge's family saw her enter the pond, and immediately grew concerned when she did not rise again. Yeshua had to close the wormhole tunnel for a time, lest the rest of her family followed her through one-by-one. They would be grieved for a time, but it would be very short. He planned to return Inge after only a few hours of her family's elapsed time later, but years of Inge's time later. And Ma- lekwa would experience the same thing. Yeshua knew that if he returned the children immediately, in Earth time, it would dilute the miracle.

The third child chosen by Yeshua to attend the academy came recommended by El Shaddai. It was a doll named Dory, the daughter of Mike and Jill born after Mike journeyed to Barnard's Star to be with Jill again late in the first decade of the 21st Century, a future that was obscured to even El Shaddai until the insurrection of Exiler and the creation of Hope. Just as Malekwa and Inge mingled with children from their distant future, Dory mingled with children from har past. Sha was a large child, much like har brother Hunky whom sha would never meet, since access to Hunky's timeline was now closed to prevent more possessions. Yeshua, speaking rather obliquely, said, Dory's existence is proof that everything we're fighting for will pan out in the end. I suppose that makes me pan-trib.

Early in the first semester Talishi and a number of Fallen Angels delivered a wide variety of musical instruments for the children to play, looking for talent in pretty much the same manner as throwing spaghetti at a wall and seeing what stuck. Dory liked the physicality of the drum kit. Malekwa eventually settled on the electric guitar, which was very strange to him. Kishar found che could play a keyboard rather well with almost no instruc- tion. Bikol Firegem discovered that sha liked the electric bass. Everyone else tried the other instruments and learned they had no talent for playing them at all, including Hope, but Hope discovered quite by accident that her real talent lay in her own voice. She could mimic any singer that she heard, and indeed any sound at all, which was no surprise, since she was really a machine with a sound card built in. So Hope became the lead singer for a band that formed more-or-less spontaneously. Yeshua asked them to think of a name. They eventually settled on Bite the Wax Tadpole.

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