A Long Road Chapter 15 Ficbit – The Right to Risk

:Any Herald can get killed, Lan Wangji. Any of us here can be. Even the priests who don’t believe the dead walk know that there may be true evil in the water, and they’re taking a risk. And they’re still here. And that is their right. This is our place. These are our people. Strong or weak, we have the right to risk our lives for what we believe is just.: Kellen paused, then drove the point home. :As Wei Wuxian did, when he rescued the Wen. Or will you believe, as Jin Guangshan does, that only the strong have the right to honor, and justice?:

:No.: He might not be sure what justice should always be, but that he was sure of. Every living soul deserved justice. And… the dead as well. :But – the danger-:

:Is a real danger, yes,: Kellen agreed. :But would you have feared it so much before you knew about his core? He’s been relying on the ghost path for years, Chosen. Which means he’s as strong as he ever was during Sunshot. So take a deep breath, center yourself, and count on the strength you know he has.:

Accurate advice. If annoying, because it was accurate.

:Heh. I told you I can be vicious when it comes to protecting lives. Aren’t you, heart-brother?:

:Perhaps.: Lan Wangji centered himself, then reached out to the Herald most likely to be aware of the dangers and free to act. :Elder Elcarth. There is… a problem.:

:Oh?: The scratch of a pencil on paper, as the Herald-historian made notes on the ongoing scene. :I take it you mean more than just the swarming malice under the water?:

It was not easy to convey the sense of qi to one who had only felt a Companion’s energies, but Lan Wangji did his best to convey the swirling rage in the river, separate from and yet still tenuously linked to the more coherent resentment in ghostly forms. :There are gui outside our area of attack. By the Blue students. Strong enough to be present in daylight.:

Elcarth’s pencil paused; a sense of unease, tempered by rational calculation. :And there is also Father Gerichen. He has no false pride. If there were a real problem he’d scream.:

:If he knows they are a threat, in time,: Lan Wangji pointed out. :Wei Wuxian can speak with the dead, and sway many of them to his side. But not all.:

17 thoughts on “A Long Road Chapter 15 Ficbit – The Right to Risk

    1. …l read that as “The horSe attacks” at first, which meant LWJ had to be the bard, and gave me a moment of confusion.
      (wait, if I’m confused over not!AncientChina stuff, does that make it Confucion? (rimshot))

      Kellen lays out the moral trap of the “overprotective hero” in a way I’ve not seen before — I’ve tried it in the past, but never managed it quite as clearly and succinctly. Imma stealing that! 😀

      Poor LWJ, trapped between his intellect (and ethics) and his instincts (which are doubtless screaming GRAB STUPID WOUNDED NO-SELF-PRESERVATION INSTINCT BARD AND WRAP IN ALL THE PROTECTIONS right now). This is an important lesson he needs to deal with, but that doesn’t make the experience any less unpleasant.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I like the discussion here — with both Kellen and Elcarth —

    –And I am anticipating the eventual full chapter with increasing nervousness about the setup to this situation (never mind the resolution!) because I keep feeling like something is going to have gone uncomfortably off kilter in the planning stages.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. You know, after that politics discussion where Lan Wangji basically had his nose rubbed in some facts (that he had not been equipped by his Sect or clan to know, I’m not blaming him), it hits a little different when I see him using ‘Wei Wuxian’ with other people. He still thinks of him as ‘Wei Ying’ but even here, where no one has a courtesy name, he falls back on manners.

    Manners, truly under appreciated social script.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Who can talk to whom? Do they have a telephone tree to warn everyone of mass danger? Are there any Companions or Heralds that can talk to WWX or Wen Ning or Father Gerichen? Is there someone close by who can warn that group of danger?
    A sensible organization would have some spare people around to carry messages or deal with emergencies. Just think of the poor runner who has to go over and say “Father Gerichen, Senior Wei, Senior Wen we believe there is something dangerous near you — probably magical”

    Liked by 1 person

      1. That would be so rude too, especially for a first contact. Sending a runner over implies whoever is in charge wouldn’t be totally surprised if help is needed.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. …okay, “telephone tree” poked my brain in a weird place. Now I need someone who knows network systems to get isekai’d into Velgarth to found VT&T: Valdemaran Telephone and Telepath.

      …it’s Monday, and I’m sleepdepped.

      Liked by 2 people

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