River of Stars Ch 2 bit – Dharma

“My.” Master Koumyou halted in the shade of a flowering cherry. “What a lovely place for a smoke.”

Kouryuu clapped a hand to his face in disbelief. “Master, the castle guard-“

“Will wait.” Koumyou lit his pipe, and drew in silver-blue smoke.

Sighing, the linguist turned apprentice set his pack down. In this mood, you’d have to be a tsunami to get Master Koumyou to move. And a tsunami wouldn’t dare.

At least I remember “tsunami” these days, Kouryuu reflected. Though he couldn’t fault Koumyou’s judgment in setting the memory-blocks in the first place. All of Shangri-La had been in an uproar after that disastrous mission. One hint of alien custom or language, those first few weeks… the youkai Queen’s children might be legally banned from temple grounds, but that had never stopped assassins before.

There were still pieces of his memory missing, though Koumyou assured him the last of the blocks should crumble within a few weeks. It didn’t bother him, really; not as much as the odd sense of disconnect he felt, sometimes. Like every returning bit of self had to be picked up, reexamined, and set back… not quite where it had begun. As if the man who’d fallen into the river months ago was – not him, but an old acquaintance, wistfully remembered.

Did I die that day?

“In a sense,” Koumyou murmured. “We all die, every day. But yes. I found you, cut the threads of your life, and rewove them to my purpose.” Solemn eyes regarded him from under silver bangs. “Are you angry?”

Kouryuu coughed, and waved away a drift of smoke. Maybe the raw edges in his mind needed the peace of mononoke-ha, almost as much as Koumyou did, but he definitely preferred a cigarette over the pipe variety. “I think you deserve a kick in the ass.”

His master chuckled.

“But I’m not angry,” Kouryuu said quietly. “I remember… I wasn’t trained enough. I wasn’t fast enough. It was supposed to be a simple mission, and then it wasn’t, and-” His fists clenched.

“And all you could do,” Koumyou said levelly, “was deny your enemy her triumph.” Silver hair tilted. “You were victorious then. Why do you fear now?”

“They need me,” Kouryuu admitted. “They need somebody, and I’m the one they’ve got, and I’m going to screw up, I can feel it – I think about going in there, and I can’t stop shaking-”


Hold nothing. “I’m not a very good apprentice, Master. How can I hold nothing, when I have to do this?”

“Hmm.” A slight nod. “I’d thought, by this time, you knew the difference between attachment and dharma.”

The force of my past actions, as a member of the SGC? No, wake up; he said dharma, not karma. The truth of my soul; conduct appropriate to my essential nature.

My goal is to get them out. But my nature-

My nature is to spit in Gyokumen Koushu’s eye, and send her back to hell.

10 thoughts on “River of Stars Ch 2 bit – Dharma

  1. Ah there he is . . . that sounds more like our favorite cranky priest.

    I sensing that there was a definite plan in the making of Kouryuu – and not in the ‘oh well, this is the one we have so let’s use him regardless’ but in the ‘ah just the one I was looking for’ sense. Not unexpected – it was my understanding that Kanzeon is a pretty sneaky deity. Make sense for her to be a pretty sneaky snake.

    But in any reality, Sanzo probably both thanks (very quietly) and curses (extremely loudly) being stuck with the monkey. And the rest of those idiots. (His words, not mine)


  2. I really like it this snippet mainly because for some reason it gave off Star Wars vibes. Although imagining Sanzo as any kind of Jedi has me caught between hysteric laughter and tears.


    1. Lets be honest, he would probably not change at all. Just replace the rest of the priesthood with Jedi. Of course, Sanzo with force powers would be… interesting.

      Also, I can totally see Kid!Anakin getting along with Goku, way too well for Sanzo. (His thoughts would probably be something like ‘There’s two of them. What did I do to deserve this.’) It would probably also lead to Anakin to a much better headspace which is a definite plus.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. And Palpatine wouldn’t even see it coming because of al the chaos around them. Or if he did, they’d be a lot closer then they appear.

        Oh my gosh, how would Kanzeon be in this? Lessee here, we still have Kyoumou as Sanzo’s master, maybe Kyoumou and Kanzeon were brother and sister Padawan? With Kanzeon having been the elder of course, it would loose apart of the fun if Sanzo couldn’t call Kanzeon an old hag. And she actually is Sanzo’s great, great? aunt. There’s at least one great in that relation anyway. …. Pun not intended. Hakkai, he’d be a Sensitive civilian who went Dark Side to avenge Kanan, surging him up to fully Awakened. Cho, smuggler. Just, a smuggler, probably Corellian, with minor Force Sensitivity but low midichlorian count, similar to your reasoning for Han in Change of Fate. Goku…… Goku is the same as Darth Revan. Reven. Whichever it’s spelled. Or maybe just widely berserk when his blood is up. Hey, does EU have anything about a species sensitive to the Dark Side in that it sends them wildly nuts if the touch the Force, cause if they do that’s totally Goku. And Kougaji and his crew are totally the saner Sith like Venge is in Re-Entry.

        Me, trying to feed the plot bunnies? Yes I am.

        Liked by 1 person

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