Through the Cracks Ch2 bit – The Right Questions

“Healer Gensai. How much do you know?”

“Enough to know I probably shouldn’t be here while you discuss the situation.” Gensai drained his cup and motioned to Yahiko. “Come along, young man. Let’s not complicate matters.” Continue reading


Through the Cracks Ch2 bit – Influence

:That’s the problem, Chosen. Whatever Himura and Kaoru are caught up in, it’s not a lifebond.:

:Not a- then what the hells is it?:

:Don’t know,: Sayvel admitted. :It Felt like something empathic; seemed to jolt through Kaoru’s wild Gift. But lifebonds happen fast. Usually at first sight. They may not be evident for a good long while – Talia and Dirk went years before he finally broke down and realized he needed her – but they’re there. Two auras blended together as one; kill one, the other’s got a hole that can bleed it to death. This… whatever it is, it needed time to build. Like one of those red bridges Yamato put over rivers; at first it just looks like a set of wooden jackstraws, then the crew pulls together and you’ve suddenly got an arch that’ll hold an army.:

Kerowyn nodded. :But definitely not a lifebond.:

:No.: Sayvel’s voice had turned wry. :Believe me, I’ve seen plenty.: She’d sighed. :Would you tell them? It’s true, as far as it goes – and we’ve got enough problems without them mixing in.:

Do we ever, Kero thought now. One of which was the ex-Heir turned Herald-Mage, soon to be on her way to Hardorn, blithely convinced that because a man could love, he couldn’t be a blood-mage. Gods, to believe the world was that simple. When was I that young?

:I don’t know. Eight?: Sayvel said dryly. :It’s not all Elspeth’s fault, you know. Companions influence their Heralds, and Gwena’s – well, Gwena. She has a very… straightforward… view of the world, sometimes.:

Yes; Herald Dirk had mentioned that more than once. While all Companions had fairly firm ethics, a few tended to see things in very black-and-white terms. Good. Evil. And damn little middle ground in between. :Influence us, hmm?:

She heard a faint, horsy snort from the dojo courtyard, where Sayvel was keeping a still-shaky Megumi company. :I’m a snarly sort for a Companion. Ask anyone. And you spent more than a year fighting Need out of your head. You knew your family – or at least Tarma, Kethry, and Warrl – loved and approved of you just the way you were. You didn’t have a traitor father who tried to kill your mother to make up for, or looks that reminded everyone of the bastard every time you turned around, or ferociously bad manners drilled into you by that Imperial spy Hulda that made you a “problem” for everyone to “solve”. Being Chosen was not the be-all and end-all of your world. You don’t influence.: