Xenofos — Inquiry

????, Sea Season


Late Sea Season On the road to Boldhome after meeting with Mellia [[[s02:session-39|Session 39]]]


Eventually Xenofos nods to Varanis and steers his horse to side of Followed.

Berra is leading Followed; either Danaril is walking or he has left with Irillo. He is no longer on the bison.

“A word, Berra?” scholar asks.

Berra glances up at him, and then further up to actually make eye contact. “Sure.” She pads along evenly. “Need to break out of the line?”

Xenofos shakes his head and slides off Creamy.

Berra does not blurt out any questions. Her face is polite, in her Humakti calm way.

Xenofos takes his time, gathering the reins to his hand right and telling his mount what good job it has done while setting to the same pace as Berra and rest of the caravan.

If Berra notices nerves, she says nothing.

After a short walk Xenofos says “I don’t know if you noticed, but you did not actually answer my question earlier.”

“Uh, which one? I was hacked off because you tried to hold my hand.” She does not look hacked off right now, assuming that word means what it should given the context. Her Heortling is clear, her voice even. She does not sound angry either.

“That much was obvious, little cousin. Why that hacked you off– was what I asked.” He looks at the road ahead and shrugs. “But you don’t need to answer. “

“Oh, right. Yeah, don’t touch me without permission. I’m a Humakti. I need to maintain separation from the world.” She says it matter-of-factly.

He takes that in silently and nods after a couple of steps.

Berra pads along quietly. 1 Listen check is passed by Xenofos Berra’s feet are making surprisingly little sound.

“That is still a command… But no matter.” He answers “Maybe good to say in Heortling so I keep it simple. You helped me when I had trouble. You looked like you in trouble with cousin. I want to repay and help. If I can. But not if you tell me to not to.”

“Yeah, that didn’t piss me off.” Berra finds a different way of putting it. “And practicing Heortling is good. But no, I don’t mind you offering. I can always say no. I mind you trying to comfort me.”

There is a raised eyebrow and small shake of head. “I cannot deny that I would have been moved to do that by seeing you sad. But I know you don’t like being trapped so I stayed far…”

“Yeah, it’s good of you.” Berra pauses a moment. “That’s different from being Humakti. That’s me. But physical comforts are things I have to learn to do without, and it gets easier as I practice, but it’s still not always easy.”

He nods and remounts Creamy.

Berra raises a hand in farewell, with a tiny smile that is as much arrogant as cute.2 Failed Charm. She’s so very… Humakti

“I feel sorry for your pain, little cousin, and the empty part in your life. Even when it is a choice you made yourself.” Xenofos says from looking down at the Humakti.3 Now what should I do with this 03 on Truth

Berra looks up, puzzled now. “The empty part is filled with a thing others do not have,” she says. “Separation only hurts when it is incomplete.” It is something she has said before.

“You said yourself it is not always easy.” He notes quietly.

“Yeah. But it’s the parts that touch the world that hurts.” Berra shrugs. “I’ll get over it.”

He nods, eyes shaded by the brim of his helmet.

Berra does not try to look at the expression he has – just walks on, the tiny smile back on her features even though she is not looking at him.4 His look of pity remains hidden by the shade then, even with the simple pass on scan

He rides briskly onward to join Varanis at the point.

Berra gets tugged off the road by Followed, who is stopping for a snack.