As a high priest, Jikaku could instruct, and remonstrate, and guide those in his charge in a more correct path. Genjyo Sanzo could blaze through a temple, shake evil-doers out of hiding, shoot anyone who needed it, shoot at anyone who simply needed a lesson in life’s unexpected hazards, and otherwise terrorize into nervous breakdowns anyone who, for one reason or another, simply was no longer fit for the position they held.
Blessed Goddess, but I do love that young man.
After all, who else would think enough of an old tanuki like himself to hand him such an interesting problem? Which the Tau’ri certainly were – and Daniel Jackson not the least of it.
A natural empath, Jikaku thought. They were born sometimes among lay people, even those who hadn’t had a temple relationship. Most eventually joined the priesthood, but temple records and his own decades of experience indicated the numbers of lay empaths had been slowly but steadily increasing. Which was part of what made Gyokumen Koushu’s tactics so monstrously divisive. A weak, untrained empath, bombarded with lethal hate, would instinctively reply in kind – leading to atrocities on both sides.
Yet even with no training, and little power, young Daniel is trying to shield himself, Jikaku observed. Wary, and yet he wants to trust… I wonder. Does he suspect what we are?
“Among your legends,” the bespectacled young man began, “do you have a story of the first world? Where humans were discovered by Ra?”
“We do,” Jikaku nodded, projecting :respect for another’s caution:. “As we have stories of how Ra lost that world, and why. It seems even a god may tire of existence, and choose to return to the Wheel to be reborn.”
Daniel almost flinched, radiating more quiet :caution: and :worry:.
So. He does sense us.
“Choose to?” O’Neill said dryly.
“The arrogance to assume you are invulnerable is a choice, Colonel,” Jikaku replied, equally dry. “Even for a god.”
“You know who we are,” the colonel said bluntly.
After a slap at a god like yours, who could not? Ah, well. It’d been fun while it lasted. “Three humans, traveling with a former First Prime of Apophis?” Jikaku shrugged. “One scholar, one scientist with the touch of a dead Tok’ra, and one commander. All of whom carry weapons and gear not native to other worlds… yet seen here, when one of our temples was attacked, almost two years ago. Yes, I know who you are. Or rather, I know who the System Lords claim you to be. Who do you say that you are?”
“Oh, that’s easy,” O’Neill shrugged back. “We’re the good guys. Just ask the Asgard.”
“I’d rather not,” Jikaku chuckled. “I prefer to be polite to my guests – and given they likely see you as good but destructive children, the answer might be embarrassing.”
:Fury.: Tightly controlled, and well banked, but :fury: nonetheless. And as pleasant as standing in an acid bath.
If he’s been enduring that for days, it’s no wonder Sanzo wants to shoot the man, Jikaku thought ruefully. “It’s better to laugh than to be constantly offended, Colonel,” the high priest said matter-of-factly. “After all, we’re not the race in danger of dying out, are we?”