“Ouch.” Ja’far blinked, and shrugged his shoulders, weaving his fingers together in thought. “Well, the good news is there’s nothing really wrong. There are a few eddies we can clear, that will help-”
“Bad news,” Alan said firmly.
Why am I not surprised? Tiburon thought wryly.
“The bad news is, there’s nothing really wrong,” Ja’far replied. “Your rukh is intact. The extra magoi seems to be blending in evenly. But you spent the first fifteen years of your life without an intact soul. It’s as if….” He frowned, thinking it over. “It’s very like just getting a cast off, after a bad break. The bone is intact but all the muscles around it are weak. And you’ve developed habits to not rely on it. It’s going to hurt for a while whenever you use magoi. There’s nothing we can do about that.”
“There isn’t?” Aladdin’s face fell. “Not at all?”
“The best thing you can do is practice using small amounts of power,” Ja’far stated. “Like building up wasted muscles. You need time. And patience.” He gave the magi a firm look. “Aladdin, if you want to help, then take some time to talk to Amon and get him to be patient. Outside of real emergencies, like the dragon, letting loose a Djinn’s full power is going to cause a lot more problems than it solves.”
“I just wish there was something I could do to help now.” Aladdin rolled his wand between his hands. “I slept for thousands of years. I’m tired of waiting.”
“You did help.” Alan planted his hands on his knees. “You helped Ja’far figure out what was wrong, and we know it’s not going to kill me. If you want to do more, check Morgan.”
The redhead started. “But nothing’s wrong with me.”
Tiburon coughed behind his hand. “Your uncle mentioned a broken door or two?”
Spots of color bloomed on her cheeks. “Did he mention the vase?”
Tiburon let an eyebrow flick up, as Simon stifled a snicker. “I will definitely ask him, when he gets back.” If he gets back… they should be okay. They should.
Though he doubted he was the only one just hanging around until Malachy and his boys made it back for sure.
Aladdin glanced toward where the tower would be, eyes focused on something beyond the physical. “They’re okay.” He bounced to his feet, visibly brightening. “Oh, I should have thought of this before! If we’re walking home with Morgan’s cousins, we can test how well it works!”
Alan blinked, and tilted his head. “Test how well what works?”
Aladdin grinned, and twirled his wand. And vanished.
“Oh yes,” Simon breathed. “Predator algorithms, eat your heart out.”