Mages. Danger. Protect-
Warmth. Small hands, callused like his own, holding back his hand on the blade. He could force them back, break her grip.
No. Not Kaoru. I won’t hurt Kaoru.
“I didn’t know his range was that great.” Gensai’s voice, breathless. “K’so – did we ask you to come in here?”
“We could have waited for the explosions.” An unfamiliar Valdemaran woman’s voice, tainted with anger. “There’s blood-magic in here, Kero. I can feel it.”
Kenshin struggled to open his eyes, fighting the reflex to leap and strike. There was the problem; an over-enthusiastic healing sleep, pressing on his mind and body. Gensai wanted me out. I trusted him!
:Back. Off.: Sanosuke growled, a sound Kenshin had never expected to hear from something that looked so much like a horse. :You think I’d let an assassin like that Jin-e anywhere near Megumi without stomping him? Put that energy down. Now!:
“I believe he is serious, ke’chara.”
Kenshin fought free of the trance in time to place a face with the voice; one of the odd folk Valdemarans called Hawkbrothers. White hair patterned with dyes into a semblance of falcon feathers, eyes bleached blue, an absence of obvious weapons besides the dagger at his belt… one of their mages, then. Which meant the man’s relatively young face could be deceptive.
Or not, Battousai murmured quietly, taking in the thick white streaks magic had left in the dark hair of the Herald-Mage in fancy Whites vibrating beside him. She can’t be older than I am, and they’re a definite pair.
Holding sleepy innocence on his face, Kenshin looked past them toward the calmest ki in the room. Blonde hair just starting to gain streaks of gray, caught back in a white cloth headband. Cool aquamarine eyes above what looked like a modified set of Herald-Trainee Grays, watching him with pure, calm curiosity. Sword-worn hands rested on her hips a measured distance from her sword’s hilt, far enough to not be an immediate threat, close enough to make it clear she did consider him a worthy opponent. A warrior, born and bred as any samurai.