“Would you believe I’m clairvoyant?” Sanzo shrugged.
“No,” O’Neill said dryly.
Good. “Dragons are telepathic.”
“Kyuu?” Hakuryuu tried to look innocent.
“Exactly when were you planning to mention you brought a telepath into a secure facility?” the general glared.
“What, like Thor doesn’t wander in here any time he feels like it?” Sanzo pointed out. “Hakuryuu could care less about SGC secrets. Hakkai is her person. She looks after him. Us, too, because Hakkai likes us; as far as she’s concerned, we’re his flock. And when somebody wants to hurt her flock, she lets us know.”
:Worry: and :anger,: tainting the air like bitter smoke.
He was not going to roll his eyes, Sanzo thought. It was undignified, and if he was going to pry the general loose from this idiotic idea of bringing Gojyo up on charges, he needed all the dignity he could carry off.
Besides, O’Neill did enough eye-rolling for all three of them.
“It’s not a Vulcan mind meld,” Sanzo said sarcastically, touching the dragon’s shoulder before she could take off to singe Hammond’s retreating hairline. :Human – my target. Watch, listen; get to Hakkai if there’s trouble.: “All she looks at is the surface. Why someone’s angry, or sad, or happy to see her. The guy upstairs must be gloating about us pretty loudly.” Not that Hakuryuu couldn’t dig deeper, if she wanted to. Usually, she didn’t.
“Kind of hard on a guy’s privacy,” O’Neill observed, tone too light for the dead seriousness in his eyes as he-
:Charlie – cordite and blood – my fault-:
Hakuryuu hissed, head lowered and wings spread, as Sanzo held onto himself through the drowning wave of :grief: and :guilt.: He’d kept his cool when he’d forced a rapist and his victim apart; he wasn’t going to lose it now because the colonel was a smart bastard with an experimental bent. “Whatever you’re up to, she doesn’t like it.”
“But she’s not telling you what it is.” The colonel’s eyes were hard, openly poised to pounce.
“No.” Sanzo shrugged. “Must not be related to us.” And Hakuryuu knew damn well he didn’t need help to sense anything that strong.
You think I’m going to crack because you throw a little pain at me? Hakkai lost his sister, his town, his own body. Gojyo lost his men, and has to live with the human in him wanting home while the youkai wants clan; every time we fight Kougaiji’s people, he’s bleeding inside. Even Goku, with all those years of alone under his grin….
I live with pain, Colonel. I don’t break for them. I sure as hell won’t break for you.
O’Neill’s eyes narrowed.
Sanzo gripped the ragged edge of his temper, fingertips biting into wood. This was a challenge, plain as any youkai’s drawn blade. And he’d spent the past two years learning not to back down.
I could crush him. Like an eggshell.
Power burned in him like fire, demanding to be used. Chants Koumyou had drilled into his head fluttered in memory, like paper scrolls cracking in the wind. Paralysis. Pain. Deflect. Distract. Cast out. Barrier shattering-
Sanzo seized those words, that shaped intent. Not safe; not safe to touch any of that power, not here. But far, far safer to have that flexing in the back of his mind, when the lava heat of the mortal dares! threatened to break free.