Through the Cracks Ch6 bit – Royal Duty

“-It’s not safe for him to be outside a clan!”

Selenay squelched the urge to knead away her headache. Gods, if she could only join that small corner of her conference room the Gensai family had taken over, after Karal and Quenten had been quietly let past by the Guards to join Sejanes. She could hear Altra purring all the way over here; the Firecat had given Ayame a careful sniffing, then settled down, perfectly happy to be petted and scratched by two curious little girls while their grandfather discussed hanyou with the two mages, Karal, and Seneschal’s Herald Kyril. Oh, how she’d love to be over there with them….

But no, she was the Queen. She had to be responsible. No matter how much she might want to shake one particular samurai until his teeth rattled. “Lord Yamagata, shouting at me is not going to get Himura to change his mind.” Selenay kept her expression serious, with just a light touch of concern. She’d already gotten Yamagata to agree to have copies of the Yamato law-books – the complete ones, this time, with all their laws on onmitsu, hitokiri, and hanyou – transported to Haven for Crown review. Now she could tend to the finer details. Such as making sure one particular Herald who’d done her best to defuse this situation didn’t wind up with her heart broken by a certain pig-headed Choshu lord. “And not safe for whom? Himura’s already been a wanderer ten years-”

“That should never have happened!” Yamagata half-closed his eyes, composing himself. “Your Majesty, forgive a tired soldier. I’ve been… concerned for him… since he disappeared off the battlefield at Toba Fushimi.”

“He seems more than capable of taking care of himself,” Selenay observed. Leaving aside the whole matter of wandering being a lingering death for a samurai. Kerowyn said Himura was more than intelligent enough to know what he was doing. Which meant he had to have a very good reason for trying to commit slow suicide. :Caryo, remind me later to check that the Healer’s Collegium got all the details on that out of Gensai. These samurai are our people, now. There’s no reason for any more of them to die if we can help it.:


26 thoughts on “Through the Cracks Ch6 bit – Royal Duty

  1. And that last bit is one of the reasons why her people love her. Also making sure she has all of the info.

    And yes, Yamagata has a point that Kenshin would die, eventually, without a clan. Which I’m sure Kenshin is perfectly aware of . . . through given how much of a hermit Hiko is, our beloved rurouni might have had a few tricks to prolong that up his sleeve . . .

    Through Gensai already took care of that. Because while Kenshin was more critical, even how much of mess his clan channels were, he was also worried about Kaoru. And they are shaping up to be neat little mixed pack / clan of samurai, Heralds, Healers, hanyou, hitokiri, Companions, and who knows what else when all is said and done.

    Of course, it probably isn’t what Yamagata imagines as a proper clan for one of the heroes of the rebellion.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. And if it was happening to almost anyone else, Yamagata would admire just how effectively Selenay was bulldozing her opponent . . . but since said opponent is him, it feels darned annoying.

        Maybe one day, he’ll look back on this with some fondness, amusement, and more than grudging respect. But that day is not today.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. “Lord Yamagata, shouting at me is not going to get Himura to change his mind.”


    And neither is shouting at Himura.

    Trying to get him to do anything he doesn’t want to do is like beating your head against a stone wall. The wall doesn’t change and you get a big headache. And on those few occasions where that wasn’t case, there were X factors involved. Like a geas. Or an unwillingness to pay the price for his failure (seeing as that price is others’ blood) to comply or at least appear to comply with the demands.

    Either of which doesn’t sound like a smart move to make against an assassin.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Even bet that Yamagata wouldn’t consider Kaoru someone that is capable of being a clan for Kenshin. After all, she’s half Gaijin.

    Though he probably hasn’t cottoned on to the fact that there is anything between the two. And while Kenshin can’t hide who he is, he’s not going to trumpet his new relationship to Kaoru from the rooftops. Because he is justifiably paranoid and NOT stupid.

    Of course Kenshin is going to have to explain to Selenay that he can’t serve her or Valdemar directly. Because such a thing would involve breaking his oath again which would be rather….hazardous.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hopefully we can find an option that lets Kenshin keep his oaths but doesn’t stomp Sano into the ground because he has the bad luck to have a student of Hiten Mitsurugi as his Chosen, someone that Sano has only just discovered didn’t die years ago and he seems pretty keen on keeping in some capacity . ..

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Who says they have to become Herald and Companion?

        They can simply stay as they are: long-suffering Hanyou in the pink Gi and the snarky not-horse friend. It’d be like a buddy cop show.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. They can simply stay as they are: long-suffering Hanyou in the pink Gi and the snarky not-horse friend. It’d be like a buddy cop show.

        I like it.

        Maybe they could form a Clan bond can function in similar fashion to a Chosen bond without actually making Kenshin a Herald and thus bond to the Crown’s service. . .

        Liked by 2 people

      3. >I’m fond of the first two, but I’;d never inflict them on Kenshin and Sano.>
        So you’re saying there are characters that you would inflict them on. *G*

        Liked by 1 person

      1. >And as for Selenay… I think she’d be happy if Himura just wasn’t working for anyone else.>
        She’s just got to convince her people and Yamagata that while Kenshin not working for anyone else is good, him working for THEM is not a good idea.

        Because the only way they can do that now is via magical coercion, blackmail etc. And trying to do that to an assassin (particularly one as good as he is) is not the brightest move one could ever make.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I think she’d be happy if Himura just wasn’t working for anyone else.

        She should be happy on that front then since Kenshin would really rather not work for anyone at all.

        And I imagine anyone trying to force the issue is going to run into some very stiff resistance and a stern warning to back off right now. Said warning is not just delivered by Kenshin either. The rest of the his little mixed pack is standing behind him making their opinion on the matter crystal clear.

        Liked by 2 people

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