Bird Families

Ash-tailed Needletail / Chaetura andrei

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The ex-leader was cleared of charges in four corruption cases. In the case of an apartment in the resort town of Guaruja, Lula da Silva was sentenced to 12 years and one month. The former president received 12 years and 11 months for a plot with a house in Atibaia, a suburb of São Paulo. The decision of the Supreme Court put an end to two more cases surrounding the Lula Institute. All these cases were handled by Judge Sergio Moro, who later became Minister of Justice in the government of Jair Bolsonaro.

Fakin ruled that Moro had no right to conduct business against Lula da Silva, since they did not fall within his competence. By the same decision, the judge terminated 14 trials against Moro himself, accused of partiality.

A year and a half ago, the Intercept Brasil portal published Moro's correspondence with prosecutor Deltan Dalanyol, which provoked a serious scandal in Brazil, one of the waves of which, apparently, was Fakin's decision. According to this correspondence, the famous judge, who in Brazil was called nothing less than a "symbol of the fight against corruption", not only tried cases against Lula, but actually coordinated the work of the police and prosecutors in investigations against the former president.

Those decisions by Moro completely changed the political landscape in Brazil ahead of the 2018 elections and opened the way for the election of Bolsonaro, whom no one took seriously even six months before the elections, to the highest state office.

Now Lula may have an opportunity to take revenge, unless Fakin's ruling can be challenged by the Prosecutor General's Office.

Lula has a chance to return to the presidential palace following the 2022 elections, according to opinion polls from the Brazilian Ipec Institute. Of the poll participants, 50 percent would definitely vote, or could vote, for Lula da Silva if he ran for office, while Bolsonaro only agreed to support 38 percent. But the index of denial of the current head of state is noticeably higher: 56 percent of the respondents would not vote for him under any circumstances, while 44 percent of the respondents refused to vote for Lulu.

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"Yes," Rammiran smiled. - Once upon a time, Angus Grand was an ordinary sixteen-year-old teenager living with his parents at the foot of the Seaside Range. Until one day, while walking in the mountains, I was hit by a needletail.

I gasped. The needletail was a huge insect, like a cross between an ant and a scorpion, and it also knew how to shoot a poisonous needle that was at the end of its tail. These aggressive creatures loved to hide in the cracks between stones, and their excellent disguise did not give a potential victim the opportunity to notice the threat in time. The strong poison made them extremely dangerous, and at one time they caused many problems for those who lived or traveled in the mountains. Therefore, needle-tails were mercilessly exterminated, and now they are extremely rare.

“Angus was very unlucky that day. The insect thorn hit the guy right in the spine. The healers saved his life, but could not get him back on his feet. Even the most eminent metropolitan experts declared it hopeless. And so he decided to try the last option.

- You? - it was not difficult to guess. They went to the Damned only when all other methods were tried and all that remained was to wait for a miracle.

- Yes. Having run away from his parents, he came to my castle. Just imagine, an exhausted, emaciated boy who could hardly even sit, managed to get to me on a horse through a good half of the kingdom and ask for help.

“Perhaps this is a real feat,” I muttered.

“Perhaps,” the man agreed. - Such willpower and determination impressed me, and I agreed. Grand spent almost four months here while I treated his back. He turned out to be very intelligent and intelligent. Like you, quickly mastered my library. Over time, he realized what power I really possess. And then envy arose in his soul. He wanted to surpass all known magicians, surpass me. Letting go of the guy on healthy legs, I began to suspect what unkind thoughts were overtaking him. I didn't want to kill Grand, it was a pity for the efforts put into him, and I hoped that over time he would be able to get rid of his passions and channel his talents in the right direction.

“I couldn't,” I said barely audibly.

“As you can see, I'm not always good at understanding people either,” my interlocutor joked sadly.

“Everyone can be wrong.” I squeezed his shoulders in a gesture of support.

“When he was leaving,” the man continued in the meantime, “for my help, I took an oath from him never to come nearer to my castle than on a day's journey. But this was not enough. The thirst for strength and power nevertheless grew in him and completely took over his mind. And Angus Grand became who everyone knows him now - a mad magician, scientist and assassin. And he still wants to defeat me. There was no need to let him go then.

- Do you consider yourself to be guilty? What happened to him?

- Not really. After all, if this wormhole was originally in it, sooner or later it would still crawl to the surface, regardless of someone else's influence. But I consider its destruction a matter of honor. Grand has already killed so many lives and could kill more. Yes, and for your own peace of mind, it is necessary.

“Yeah, well, business,” she could only say. Perhaps I agree with Rammiran. Even if the needletail story hadn't happened, Angus Grand would still have found his obsession.

- Why is he hunting you so hard? Is it just because of strength?

“Not only,” the man shrugged. “He knows that I will do my best not to let his plans come true. Therefore, for Grand I am not only a source of such desirable strength, but also an obstacle that separates him from the pinnacle of power.

- Have you found out anything about that hair from my ... from the Comte de Ant? - I asked, and to my surprise I suddenly realized that the memories of my ex-fiance and his act did not cause me absolutely any emotions.

- Nothing definite yet. Grand is hiding very well, and I cannot interrogate the count without any serious evidence, after all, your king will be very unhappy if I just start grabbing his subjects.

- I'm worried about my parents, - quietly admitted to him, - because they do not know about the real essence of Rikhard and trust him. And he can easily take advantage of this and do something terrible.

“Don't be afraid,” the mage squeezed my wrist soothingly, “I'll make sure nothing happens to them. And with your funny red-haired friend too.

“Thank you,” I whispered sincerely. - It is very important for me.

- I know. Everything will be fine with them. I don't think they are now, but you are in much greater danger. After all, you are the one who can give Grand access to me directly.

I just sighed.

“And he has nothing to stop at nothing,” the magician continued. - And I really do not want you to suffer in our showdown. So I beg you, Elyra, be careful.

“I promise,” she nodded seriously. And suddenly I realized that I had been standing for a long time, just hugging him by the shoulders, and the man was holding my hand and gently stroking the sensitive skin of his wrist with his fingertips. And from this gentle, barely perceptible caress, heat surged to my cheeks, and it became difficult for me to breathe.

“It’s even strange that you let me into your library after him, and even more so into the laboratory,” I blurted out in excitement the first thing that came to my mind.

"You have no rot, girl, you have a pure, bright soul," Rammiran replied calmly and touched my fingers with his lips. Hot streams seemed to flow down my hand.

- How do you know? I whispered with dry lips.

“I know,” he replied simply and, kissing my palm lightly, let it go with subtle regret. - Enough bedtime stories, it's late, it's time for you to sleep.

“Good night, Rammiran,” I whispered and walked out, hiding a slightly stupid but very pleased smile.

- Good night, Elyra, - came after me.

I stared at the viscous potion bubbling lazily in the large flask. It was important not to miss the moment when it changes color, and to add the last ingredient, already waiting for its turn in the ceramic bowl.

- A universal wound healer? - asked Fil, who entered the laboratory.

- Uh-huh, - I nodded, without taking my eyes off the flask, - according to an improved recipe.

Since the Damned revealed his name to me, he allowed me to come to the laboratory, even when he was not there. And now I shamelessly took this opportunity, experimenting with new elixirs.

- Do you still hope to go down in history as the creator of some great Mixture de Werner? - the keeper chuckled.

- Why not? But for now, I just hope to get rid of the side effects.

The potion suddenly gave a strange grunt, foamed and blackened sharply.

- Well, - I could not hold back a disappointed sigh, - again, not that. Probably, it was necessary to put less marshmallow root. Well, a negative result is also a result.

Carefully removing the flask from the burner, I dumped the failed potion into the recycler.

- You shouldn't pour it out, - the cat continued to mock, - maybe you've got some kind of universal solvent.

- Yeah, rather a universal potent poison. Something you have become suspiciously cheerful lately, my tailed friend, - I squinted.

- Why not? - the cat yawned imperturbably. - When everything is good in the house, then its keeper is satisfied.

- So you are the keeper of the castle? Someone like the main brownie? - asked in passing, transferring the bowls to the sink.

“Not really,” Fil explained willingly, “rather, I am the keeper of the family to which Rammiran belongs, here he is his only representative. Well, this castle is now like a family nest.

- Guardian of the clan? And how do you keep it?

- Don't think, girl, I can count not only pots. People like me protect the house, protect family members, help raise children, collect and pass on the experience of previous generations. In a word, they do everything so that peace and prosperity reign in the nest.

I giggled silently. At these words, for some reason, the imagination drew a plump cat lovingly winding a neat structure of branches at the top of the tallest pine tree.

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