Eril — 0198 Transcript Of Conversation With Candidate Berra
When considering an initiate for the honour of further knowledge of the god, it is appropriate to test them continually, in action, deed, word, thought. Jarang’s Daughter is an initiate in good standing, of three years’ seniority, with a great devotion to the path, and little innate understanding or intelligence. Nevertheless, she is worth considering for examination in the future.
Remember this. Ahh, I see she has brought a spearshaft to wake her with. How… conscious of dignity.
I will remember.
Note that she shows due respect on seeing me, and wakes quickly without confusion.
I note this.
“Beg to report about the political matters of Prax, my Lord.”
Injured. Bearing it well. We shall enquire when she is gone.
Extra effort. I do not recommend this course.
The effect on her of knowing that I know such details outweighs the problems. She must continue to act through awe.
Comprehension is mine.
There follows a rundown of the army of Prax, what it is like, the numbers, what she saw in Argrath’s encampment, and what Pavis was like, and that Toras said the way was closed, but nevertheless Venna appeared at the Block some time after that. So how closed it was, she’s unsure.
Report confirms other estimates.
Scrappy report giving. She conflates the personal with the factual. “I see. The Praxian may be trouble.”
“Which …Praxian, Lord?”
Humakt give me separation from this ordeal. Literally her first sentence after the report.
In grammatical terms her questions is correct.
I know. But … so slow. “Yes. But specifically the King of Pavis.” And look. New thoughts crossing her mind. Where were we on the Swords and Boards game?
I win in 7
“So, the conversation that Toras had with Varanis, as reported to me. That he said that Argrath was of the Blood of Sartar and that if Varanis tried to take his throne, there would be trouble. Uh, they would be enemies, I think is the term.”
“This is a known matter; that he makes this claim.” Yet she still surprises. Perhaps coming up from under is the key. I thought too little of her and she is a sufficient initiate. She thought to pass that message.
A rare word from you.
She is… sufficient. But an initiate.
“The only other thing that is of interest is that when Venna was speaking to Rajar, Rajar said he’d prefer this thing to be fought in Sartar than in Prax, and Venna said she’d prefer it to… sorry, the Great Khan would prefer it to be in Tarsh.”
Tell her what she needs to know. Nothing is secret, but she is ignorant.
Indeed. And have her feel I trust her.
Do you trust her?
“They anticipate another attack by the Empire. This seems… probable.” So much work for that little word. Humakt be with us. And he will.
“That’s pretty much all I managed to get. Um.”
Um. Um? Can we have her brought up for a few years in an oratory school?
Your concentration is slipping. Annoyed?
For certain reasons, yes. She sometimes manages better than this. I keep forgetting not to hope.
“Very well. Have you found a Wyter Spirit yet?” Yes, a blank stare. But she does not understand the problem. The very real problem.
“Uh, no Lord, I’m… I don’t know how much you know about worshipping yourself? I know a bit…”
Why now? Why does she show intelligence NOW? That pause. She guesses. “It… has not come up significantly.”
Not a guess. Confusion. Her pulse is slow.
Thank you. Noted.
... Thanks noted.
“I’ve… been asking the god. There are some things that I know, but I don’t think you’ve written the sacred music yet.”
She knows music?
Really not. “Very well.”
“And, um… I hadn’t really… it hadn’t occurred to me Lord that I’d be the one to get the Wyter Spirit.”
Well, no. But it had not occurred to me that you would be the one to open the way for apotheosis. Yet here we are. “Very well. I shall bear this… under consideration.”
Why? Withdrawal of favour? Threat?
Give her room to work. She is a natural rebel, and will wish to work because she can outdo my consideration, not because she fears me.
A useful tool.
Yes. She has learned to present her hilt this year, even.
Long pause. Slow thinker.
You met her mind. You tell me.
Wasn't thinking. Was acting.
Mmm. Yes. She tends not to think.
“…I talked to Lord D’Val.”
Ah yes. Hence having had time to seem intelligent.
Do I record the eyebrow movement?
“He said people don’t seem to realise you’re a hero – I didn’t know you could hide it.”
“It is not a matter of hiding. That is dishonest.” Take the hint, initiate.
“Sorry… I thought it would shine through.”
Good. “It is … a truth that people rarely look at what they are accustomed to seeing.”
“Even when you change the sort of clo-” … “Yeah Lord.”
I don't record that nervous swallow from her either, do I?
This transcript may require some scribal touches.
“So, um, what do I do next to help?”
“Be better. Learn fast.”
Is that one of your noises?
No. I understand grammar.
“Faster than you already have. If necessary I will find you a stronger sword to train you.”
“He’s actually pretty good for me. But there are a lot of weaknesses in my character and I know that.”
“Be… forged by the impacts.”
She's getting this.
I know. Like I said, it is impossible to tell where her intellect will meet the surface, on any given day.
“That’s actually what I’ve kind of always worked on, I mean, it’s quite likely I’ll die, to be honest, Lord, and I wouldn’t want to let you down. Can I apologise now that I might die and I don’t want to let you down?”
Something to give her backbone.
I don’t need you to tell me that. “Very well; do not let me down.”
<redacted portion (accidentally deleted by Berra)>
Yeah, sorry, that was the Sartar I meant.
Very well, yes, there will need to be a Proxy as… offspring will be required. I would… suggest that a second proxy arrangement be made with the Stallion King.
Erm, I don’t actually know how the Stallion King marries, Lord. Just… lay it out?
Very well. We find some suitable male of the right line to…
Yeah, the kids. I get that.
On the Horse Queen. Similiarly that duty is performed upon the Prince by the Stallion King.
Fair enough, if she can agree to that…
This is my current… discussion.
I ain’t gonna ask how that’s going.
The Prince is a Hero. Of long standing. This will not occur until it is her idea.
Mm. That can be quite tricky, and I’m glad that we serve someone of intelligence.
I would suggest that you rest but not too long, and then you get yourself ready. The next year will bring war.
It’ll bring breathing as well…um, yes. Yes Lord… She’s Orlanth Rex now.
She’s … she doesn’t have the big ambition, but she wants to lead and look after people. Um, she’s not a threat to… she’s not personally a threat to the Prince’s stability.
Then I would strongly advise that her herald learn Heortling.
Yeaaaah I um I’ll explain a bit about words to him. Short ones.
You are, I recall, proficient – mostly – at short words.
Proficient means good at, right?
good at short words….
“Yeah, s’better. I’ll make sure that he knows what he’s done.”
Excellent. Was there anything else to report.
You got a note on what Ty Kora Tek said to Humakt?
The man who wrote it? He’s really smart, and if you can keep talking to him, he probably needs favours right now.
An’ he doesn’t understand Death.
Um, and anything Battalion says about me is probably true. But they deserved it.
That’s all, Lord.
Candidate has talent. Good fortune has made up for deficiencies of character and education, and she understands the former. Will never be educated. Potential allied spirit might cover this weakness. Must learn to take on appropriate responsibilities personally. Should not be informed of candidateship.
Careful. You're hoping.