Hurt Feelings

Xenofos — Hurt Feelings



Mainly on the road from Quackford to Clearwine after the river was planted [[[s03:session-5|Session 5]]]

Migth be spoilery for Varanis


At Quackford at some point after the new river has joined the Creek Xenofos closes on Berra and says quietly “I think we need to have a talk at some point. After we both have had a good sleep.”

“Sure. I see a duckling, though. So I think I’m about to have to judge fluffy swordducksship again.” Berra gives Xenofos a nod and goes to attend to the quackiest part of being a Humakti duck hero.

Later, having slept, she suggests, “Xenofos, you want that talk?” It is nearly time to get in motion.

“Yes, but are we not setting in motion quite soon?”

“We could take a bit of time, or talk once we’re going.” Berra shrugs, apparently not minding.

“Later, when we have better time then” Scribe sets off to taking care of the saddle and tack of Creamy.

Berra deals with Followed’s tack in the usual way – quickly. It all goes on, the bison gets given a scratch between the horns with all of Berra’s strength, and then the Humakti goes to make sure of the rest of the cavalcade.

For some reason suitable time for scribe to pick up his talk does not seem to materialize naturally. Either Berra is busy or there is something requiring watching over or scribe needs to talk with Varanis at the time.1 pass love Berra, fail truth in the morning

A couple of times, it looks like Berra is going to ride over that way, but she always considers it and then does not.

Yelm is low over the Dragon pass and Clearwine almost in sight when scholar steers his horse closer to followed.

Berra looks towards Xenofos and gives him a bit of a grin. “Right. Yeah.” She seems happy enough to see him, and maybe resigned to the conversation.

“Yes. I am not sure where to begin” scholar says, pushing his hat back in his head.

“Just say things. I’ll see if I do as well. I never know what you’re thinking until you say it, so let it out.” Berra shrugs like that is easy.

“At some point I would need to write down everything you want to tell of what you felt or heard from that egg, for Lhankor Mhy and Library.” Scribe is looking past Berra.

“Oh. Right.” Berra considers. “Uh, it wasn’t really language. I was dreaming. I knew that I knew a few things, but it started fading. That’s why I couldn’t … not to talk. Talk with. Talk with it.”

Xenofos nods. “Good. We’ll discuss that at some point when I have my writing kit and a table. I think.” There are pauses in scribes talk as he scans the horizon.

“You know, it could be someone else?” Berra suggests. “You don’t have to take it all down.”

“If you don’t want to talk to me it could be someone else.” He nods.

“Alright. How in hell did you get from ‘it does not have to be you’ to that?” Berra has her yeah-really look on.

“You suggested it could be someone else.” Xenofos swallows and shrugs “I think I should write it as one whole because I have the other parts of the story.”

“Yeah, but I suggested it because you don’t want to have to think about it.” Berra shrugs. “If you wanna, sure. But there’s just some stuff that flashed through my head. I saw things, or knew that I knew them. Some things seemed obvious. Like how to look after it. But I made a choice as well – I wanted a river, not a dragon.”

Scholar makes a forbidding gesture. “I will not forget we were dealing with a possible dragon. And I could not accept the risk of us having a dragon there.”

“Xenofos…” Berra starts off, then stops, and gathers herself. “You gave me the egg. I know that.”

“Yes. When you had shown you could walk on your own feet out of the gate and promised to protect it with your life from breaking.” He glances at Berra “I was quite saddened by your bullying and accusations but since Varanis said I provoked you I thought I maybe should explain.”He looks forward. “I know I did not do that very coherently when carrying that egg.

“Yeah, well.” Berra shrugs. “I think you’ll never really trust me, and I’ve got to learn to live with that.” She does not seem happy about the idea.

“With the stake being a dragon arriving there and then I knew quite clearly what was the worst that could happen. So it was imperat… So I knew after the first lightning that I simply could not let that egg break.”

Berra nods. “Mhm.” Xenofos gets a slow look from her, up and down, and then she is back on guard. A moment later, thought catches up with her once more. “I’m sorry. I panicked too.”

“I did not panic Berra. ” He rubs his brow, “Yes, the thought of what I carried was horrible, but I felt I could think with clarity and asses risk of the egg breaking as the situation and unfolded.”

“Yeaaah. Well, in that case, please work on saying things clearly.” Berra looks a little disappointed, perhaps, but she does not work up to high emotion.

“I did not trust outsiders to hear of the dragon so I was a bit constrained. And, yes when carrying that thing and being shouted at by you I was not very eloquent.” he looks sadly at Berra “Even if shouting did not do what you wanted I did hear what you said.”

Berra looks at him now, and says, “I’m a follower of Humakt. There isn’t anyone else who can fight like me, and know what I know, and protect things like I can. Even Rajar can’t. I’d know he was coming.”

“I had valid reasons to not give it to you, to keep it safer.” Xenofos looks at the little Humakti. “I doubt you would be prepared to listen to them, let alone accept them. But if that was so, why did you pass the egg to me when you went to fight the Dragonewts.”

“Because then I knew it was safer to do that. I’m a Humakti. I was the one that would put down the opponents fastest, and if I failed, you could flee better. I had to keep it until I knew what the danger was, then deal with it. You got over your fear. But you’re not getting over thinking I don’t have judgement. That’s what you don’t trust, Xenofos. I know battle better than you do.”

“I knew the worst case. I had to use my own judgement. And that night I had to evaluate if you were safe. I had to evaluate if you had command of your body, your spirits and wits.” he looks at Berra “With the price of failure I could not do any other way.”

“Yes. But now we are going over old ground, Xenofos. We’ll find nothing but our own prints here, going various ways.”

“You had been unconscious, your body could not be trusted before there was evidence you control it. You demanded possession of a very dangerous thing after losing your mind it’s presence, your spirit could not be trusted before there was proof you were your own mistress. You claimed possession of it by reason that was illogical when compared to the history of the egg I had seen as by Master of Knowledge. Again time was required to see what is happening. You chose to lay your hands on the carrier of the egg thus risking breaking the egg and failed in the attempt, so your sense of battle could not be trusted. All these you presented with shouting. And the price of misplaced trust could be death by dragon to my mistress and town of Clearwine. You being Humakti is pretty small thing there Berra.”

Berra bows in her saddle. “So you know, your not panicking and your panicking both seem a lot like you just being stubborn. It’s really hard to tell which is which. You don’t say your reasons, and you don’t listen properly either. I didn’t start off shouting. You disobeyed your liege, and… you know, I don’t really want to go through this. Like… you just said all the things that I figured you’d say, and you’re that much older and there’s no new knowledge in the world.” Her expression changes to annoyance, finally.

“You did proceed to shouting pretty rapidly…I was pretty certain you would not be prepared to accept the possibility you are wrong. Or even to accept that others must use their judgement. ” Xenofos breaths in, calms himself and returns the bow “I can see why the lack of explanations would add to your irritation though, and accept I should have attempted to explain myself better… “

“Sure. But YOU made the decisions. You held back information from people and you thought you had to do it all. Right from the start. I found out what it was when I woke it. Because you didn’t tell anyone. Seeker after Knowledge.” She might sound dismissive now. She might just be tired.

“I did mention that. Maybe you missed some details while you were unconscious? ” Scribe says “But yes with unknown guards around I did not talk of it where anyone could hear.”

“Uhuh. So anyhow, are we done?” It’s definitely irritation and dismissal. She is in a rather worse mood now than when they started talking.

Xenofos nods “I understand if you wish to reconsider talking to me of your experiences. But if it pleases you I wish to return to that, maybe some other day.”

“Yeah. Let’s not. I’d prefer you to not be here for a bit. I’ll talk to someone else. Or not.” Berra shrugs.

Xenofos nods stiffly.

Berra, now wearing an expression with a lot of glare to it, turns the look on the landscape, like she is daring it to pick a fight.

Xenofos lets the whole cavalcade pass him without saying anything. He is biting his teeth and breathing with long calm breaths.

Berra just rides on, alert. Her bearing has changed very little – she is still searching for problems all around, even letting her attention pass back, and over Xenofos, without much emotion.

After a while Xenofos whips Creamy to better speed and passes the whole cavalcade again catching up with Berra.

The Humakti watches him and glances ahead, maybe looking for the trouble he has seen.

“I got angry and left a thing unsaid. ” Scholar looks at the little Humakti.

Berra looks at Xenofos with the unnatural calm of someone trained by D’Val in not losing their temper. “Speak, if you wish.” The unnatural way of speaking, too – tempered and choosing her words precisely.

“Everything I did at Clearwater I did to protection of my liege, her entourage and town of Clearwine. Not to hurt you with distrust. I did, in deed and in defending those actions. I apologize for that, Berra Jarangsdaughter.” He waves forward “I’ll ride a bit ahead to see what is up there.”

Berra bows her head. “Thank you. I hope your ride is good.” Her expression stays calm, although there was a twinge of what might have been anger or pain beneath.

Xenofos dashes off in cloud of dust.

  • 1
    pass love Berra, fail truth in the morning