“Fortunately, Koumyou Sanzo was known to be a bit eccentric,” Hakkai informed them, picking his words with delicate care. It wasn’t lying. Exactly. “Once he pulled Kouryuu from the river, he allowed the rumor to spread that the stranger was actually a holy young monk from the mountains, who’d been persecuted by jealous evil spirits to the point that he threw himself into the river and prayed for purification. Which, obviously, worked.” The healer chuckled. “It’s the best kind of story; everyone expects Sanzo to deny it, because only a complete boor would boast about such a sign of divine favor.”
Teal’c eyed him skeptically. Major Carter frowned. Dr. Jackson translated for Janet, looking worried. “And what did this Koumyou get out of it?” O’Neill asked dryly.
“Someone to talk to, who didn’t expect him to be a pinnacle of holiness?” Hakkai shrugged. “I didn’t really have a chance to meet him.” Poor Sanzo.
O’Neill smirked, like Gojyo with a winning hand. “So he got robes and a gun. Tell me they don’t ask him to make it rain.”
Not twice. “That’s – ah – more the gods’ department. Though he does sometimes end up preaching.” Better not to say too much about the sermons. Lectures on holy hypocrisy, refusing to attack youkai who didn’t attack you first, and the necessity of higher stopping power if you did start shooting – well. He had no idea how seriously these people took their gods, and he didn’t feel inclined to find out.
“We don’t impersonate gods,” Dr. Jackson said worriedly. “Or priests.”
O’Neill cleared his throat.
“The emissary of Ra thing was an accident, Jack.”