Whispers of Fire Ch6 – Sinbad

Sinbad focused on the boy who might be more dangerous than all his Generals put together. “Aladdin. You’re a magi too?”

Because the only thing worse than the boy knowing how dangerous he could be, was not knowing. There was no way even Sindria could protect a magi from the whole world. Better, far better, to get Aladdin prepared to protect himself.

Morgiana gave him a dark-lashed look, wary as a jungle cat. Even Aladdin looked startled. “Too? Mister Sin, do you know another magi?”

“I do,” Sinbad admitted, reaching out to touch the odd warmth of solidified rukh. Solid. Real as Baal had been, that day he’d faced down the entire Partevian army camped around the fallen Dungeon. “Although Yunan and I aren’t exactly close….” There. Give the boy a name to look for, in case everything went wrong and he was separated from Sindria after all. “But yes. I’ve seen a little of what a magi can do.” Often from the wrong end of Judar’s lightning bolts. Ouch.

“Who are you?” Morgiana asked quietly. “You’re not just a merchant.”

“Well, I have been,” Sinbad objected, oddly hurt. She wasn’t charmed. How could she not be charmed? Granted, Fanalis, they tended to coo more over things with obvious teeth – but it was a horrible, horrible blow. “But you’re right that I’m not just a merchant. I,” he swept a hand grandly toward himself, with a jaunty little bow, “am Sinbad.”

Silence.

Behind him, Sinbad swore he heard Ja’far muffle a snicker.

“Um… you’re who?” Aladdin wondered.

This was just not happening. “Sinbad,” a very frustrated king said again. “You know, the Legend of Sinbad? The Sailor of the Seven Seas?”

“Playboy of the Seven Seas,” Masrur murmured.

Damn it, Morgiana would have heard that. Not fair. “Capturer of seven Dungeons! The man who built Sindria with his own hands – and loyal friends to help,” he added quickly, feeling Ja’far’s pointy glare. “You know, Sinbad!

“Oh!” Aladdin jumped in place, eyes alight with recognition. “Like in the book Alibaba had!”

A caravan driver had a book. A caravan driver who could read, and who’d spent some of whatever little funds he had on a book. About the legends of dungeons.

Thank Solomon we found Aladdin first, Sinbad thought, not sure if he should laugh or cry. If he’d started spreading that tidbit around Balbadd, no one could doubt who he was looking for.

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25 thoughts on “Whispers of Fire Ch6 – Sinbad

  1. It always was funny how Aladdin and Morgiana didn’t have a clue who Sinbad was, except for the book connection.

    How would the fact that Alibaba bought a book about dungeon to read was such a signal about who he was?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Apparently there’s a lot of places in the Magi world – especially in the Oasis Cities – where most commoners can’t read. Sinbad himself didn’t learn until he was in his teens – Rurumu taught him and Ja’far.

      Alibaba not only reads, he reads Tran. An obscure language you almost always find only in dungeons. Not that Sinbad knows about the Tran bit yet….

      Liked by 1 person

  2. *snickers* Sometimes even the legendary’s legend isn’t big enough.

    Thank Solomon we found Aladdin first, Sinbad thought, not sure if he should laugh or cry. If he’d started spreading that tidbit around Balbadd, no one could doubt who he was looking for.

    *wince* Yeah. Sometimes you don’t have to be malicious to cause someone a lot of damage.

    Ugo, I think you might have kept Aladdin a little too naive about stuff.

    Did we ever get a reason why Yunan decided not to trust Sinbad anymore? If he ever did. He might have chosen him but he didn’t exactly get to know Sinbad before convincing him to go into Ba’al’s dungeon. And he didn’t stick around to get know him afterward either. And there is only so much about a person you can learn by watching them from a distance and NEVER OR VERY SELDOM TALKING TO THEM. Especially when they are trying to fight a force that you have been fighting and therefore should have warned him about or shared information or something.

    Yes I realize that Yunan is probably tired and damaged from fighting for so long with no headway and his fellow Magi doing precisely nothing to save the world – with the exception of Ugo whose job keep him from being too actively involved in the front lines of this conflict – and one is actually helping to destroy the world (because the world-ending lunatics got him as a baby and raised him – there is your nightmare fuel kids) – but still ARGHH!

    I said before, I will say it again. Writers, stick AND carrot. And no Lucy-with-the-football the carrot every single time. Throw the good guys some of the cards and actual victories (not the pretend victories or victory that is snatched away at the last moment). Balance! It’s hard to believe the bad guys haven’t succeed yet when they have almost all the cards and win all of the major battles or always turn the hero’s victories into some form of defeat so that their only victory is that they aren’t dead.

    Oopps, another rant. Sorry about that everyone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hmm. On the one hand, yes, Ugo should have told Aladdin more. OTOH – given Ugo wasn’t exactly in the same dimension, we don’t know how much he actually knows about how the current world works.

      As for Yunan and Sinbad – no idea. It’s canon that Yunan just helped him by bringing Sinbad to a Dungeon, and then would show up once in a while being mysterious afterward.

      Totally agree on the lack of carrots. Bad for eyesight, no carrots, writers! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. *nods*

        True – it does seem likely that he didn’t know about how the current world worked.

        There is a lot of that mysterious mentor or semi-mentor who pops in, says or does something vague, and then leaves in fantasy fiction. And it’s kinda of annoying. Especially when the person they are being vague to doesn’t understand what in the heck they are talking about until after the fact. Because they have no context for whatever it is that they are babbling about.

        Is there any reason in particular you are not explaining whatever it is in plain, simple language? Are you incapable? Or does the writer thinks it makes it more mysterious? I don’t think it does – I think it makes some of us want to shout at the page or screen – “If that is what you wanted, then why did you just say so?!”

        Had the thought the other day that simply giving Alibaba enough magoi to able to support and wield Amon as easily as any other Metal Vessel User (after the required practice) can would still make him quite the underdog. First, many of the ones with only one vessel too have had theirs longer than he has and therefore are more practiced. Secondly, there are people like Sinbad with 7 or Kouen with 3, all of which they have had for several years.

        Enough magoi to support and wield two Djinn might take him out of the underdog category – through give how much magoi Kouen seems to have, maybe not. Through it might make the power levels of hero and ally and antagonist more balanced. And there is the wrinkle that he still has to learn how to wield that power and according to Sinbad that seems to take about a year. Possibly for each Djinn.

        Just saying there were ways to make Alibaba more powerful without making him Sinbad 2.0 and losing his underdog hero status . . .

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hmm. Canon, so far as we know, Alibaba has enough magoi to support one Djinn, just no more than that. And a lot more time to practice would have helped. Six months in Sindria with no one to tell him to move Amon to a different Vessel – argh, makes no sense.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. I actually have seen stories that provided good reasons for the “mysterious mentor/instructions/etc” routine. Not many, and not often, but I have. Usually those are some variant on “this knowledge is inherently dangerous if you aren’t ready for it, and if you are ready for it you will be able to figure it out, therefore it’s a built-in safety measure.” (usually for certain variants of magic/psi/etc) Schimtz’s story, The Witches of Karres, is one example of that. I’ve even seen some rare ones where it actually showed the danger, by having an insufficiently advanced mentor mess up, and give knowledge that someone wasn’t ready for, and then have to deal with the results. Tho that’s even more rare.
        The other variant is one where it’s basically a spy-chess-game going on in the background, so the mentor/manipulator is having to try to get stuff to happen without letting information out that the badguys can find out and counter. This variant is usually extremely poorly managed, tho, as usually it is done in such a way that the unintended consequence is that the mentor is a worse danger and more arguably evil than the badguy is. I have, however, seen a few rare cases where this variant was actually done right. And that’s usually where the guys who are getting the “mysterious clues” are actually being used as the distraction, and aren’t intended to get anything from it (and are kept relatively safely out of the real line of fire).

        Liked by 1 person

      4. @Ashley: Re your last point – I point to Harry Potter and Albus Dumbledore. *nods firmly* Irritating as hell. That’s one thing I try to make sure Does Not Happen with any of my characters.

        Though those ideas of it being handled well are useful. Will make note!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. I do want to point out that Yunan might have been the Magi to introduce Sinbad to dungeons, but it is actually not his job. His job was to guard the dark continent. Now Judar and Schezerade (must have misspelled) they were supposed to help (potential) kings.

      Unfortunately, well Judar: enough said. Then Schezerade got too attached to hers and wouldn’t leave his legacy.

      Yunan probably didn’t want to be too close to Sinbad even ignoring that he had other important responsibilities.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Six months in Sindria with no one to tell him to move Amon to a different Vessel – argh, makes no sense.

    O.o Jeez . . .

    I thought you lot wanted someone to help you with the bad guys and just plain antagonists. And that would be easier and he’d be a much more effective ally if you know, HELPED! Like help him transfer his Djinn into a different Vessel or helped him train his powers.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Sinbad is correct: The only thing scarier than someone knowing he has Phenomenal Cosmic Powers is someone who //doesn’t know how to use them//.

    Also, speaking of holes in the plot, you would think another Magi would have noticed a Disturbance in the Force when Judar was kidnapped. I do not see the Rukh being passive about a Magi being, yah know, kidnapped by the Big Bad’s henchmen! …or maybe that’s why Hakuryuu (spelling?) got thrown at him later?

    …damn it, my bunnies are looking at me with interest. No, I do not want an AU where Yuan rescues Judar and then has to raise him. And then apprentices him to Sinbad. Even if baby!Judar wearing Yuan’s hat is an adorable image. Even if it would be hilarious. I don’t know enough about Magi to make it work!

    Plot bunny(s) for adoption, anyone?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Don’t worry, I’m pretty sure this plot kernel has been done. Enough times for you to have a small sampling with which to try to sate the bunnies, even!

      I don’t think canon remotely supports this, at all, but my impression with Judal was always that the rukh is like the Force – it doesn’t want to be light or dark, and having both is part of the system, so a magi falling into depravity isn’t something it would innately reject. It’s just an expression of the state of the world!

      The /good guys/ would care, of course, but they’re often out-planned. (And out-gunned, out-manned, out-numbered….)

      Liked by 2 people

    1. No actual idea, but here’s a theory: Judar and Scheherazade weren’t doing their jobs properly (to be fair – Scheherazade was trying, just keeping her focus too narrowed on Reim). So while whatever warning was enough to get through to Ugo to get Aladdin going, maybe the same phenomenon told Yunan he had to pinch hit for the other two magi as well.

      Like

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