35 – Thief

As a child destiny to exalt as a Sidereal, you never were in want of anything.  All your needs were funded by the Bureau of Destiny and you were able to buy any toy you wanted with prudent saving of your allowance.   So when you walked into your tutoring session with the Owl a few days after returning to Yu-Shan, you were surprised when your teacher ruffled his feathers and declared, “You are a thief.”

You realize that he is talking about the book you took from the restricted section of the library.   How did he know about the White Treatise? You decide to play dumb, as slide into your chair.   “What?”

The Owl slams the text book down on his desk.  “Svante, you cannot lie to me.  I know a thief when I see one.  You have stolen something from my domain.“

Oh, shit!  Apparently identifying thieves is among the Owl’s abilities.   “Technically, it wasn’t me…” you start.

“There is no technically about it!  You are a thief!”  The Owl screeched.   You stare at the Owl in silence, unsure what to say.  When you don’t respond to Owl’s accusation, he starts setting out the books and papers needed for today’s class.

“Are you going to tell Akachi?” you ask quietly.   Tomorrow is when you are going to the Martial Arts Tournament with your Dragon blooded friends.   If you piss Akachi off, he might not let you go.

“Not yet.   This is your first offense, so I am going to give you a chance to redeem yourself and return what you stole. But…”  The Owl extends to his full height and stares you down.  You are reminded that even though the Keeper of the Locks is a short and dumpy god, the Owl is a Predatory bird.  “I do not tolerate thieves among my students.   Do you understand?”

You squirm uncomfortable in your chair.  “Yes.”

“Good.”  In a brisk tone, the Owl starts class.  “Now open your book to page 159. Today we shall discuss the various islands of the West.  “

Later that afternoon, you are in Akachi’s workshop, watching the elder run a polishing stone along a Red Jade Sword.  The surface of the sword was mirrored and had Chrysanthemum blossoms etched into the blade.

“How much longer until the sword is finished?” you ask.  Akachi has been working on it since you returned and frankly you didn’t see much difference in the blade with each of Akachi’s swipes.

“The polishing process usually takes weeks.”

“Weeks?!”  You would lose your mind if you had to rub a stone along a piece of metal for weeks.  You do not understand how Akachi had the patience for such tedious work.

Akachi chuckles.  “Don’t worry.  I’ve been working on this project while you were at the Military school.  We are just about done.“   He sets the polishing stone aside and gives the sword a wipe with a cloth.  “What do you think?”   He hands you the blade.

You take the sword and practice a few of the Katas Chiyoko showed you.   The adult sized sword is awkward into your hand.   You are surprised, you don’t remember the headmaster’s sword being this unwieldy.   You hand the sword back to Akachi.   “It doesn’t feel right.  The Headmaster’s sword was a lot more comfortable to use.”

“The headmaster’s sword was thirsty for revenge against its owner’s murder.  Though the Lunar attuned to the sword, the sword had not yet transferred its loyalty to her.  “  Akachi starts to oil the sword.  “Remember, attunement does not always mean ownership.  It takes time for the relationship between exalt and artifact to build. An especially long time if you killed the former owner of the artifact.”

You are silent as you absorb this information.  “What happened to the sword?”  You had not seen it since the cave.

“The headmaster has a daughter in the Western Fleet.   We sent the sword to her.”   He smiles at you.   “After I have delivered the sword to Elder Kejak, why don’t we head to Creation and get something to eat.   Your pick.”

Though Akachi has repeatedly assured you that your time in the military school was not a punishment, you still do not believe him.   When you asked Yeva, she said “Do you think the other students are there for punishment?  No!  Every Dragonblood goes though Military School.   You are a Celestial Exalt, you should be able to handle everything that school threw at you and asked for more.”

You sigh at the unfairness of life when a servant enters the workshop and says “Elder Akachi, Elder Kejak is here to see you.”

“Tell him that I will drop the sword off at his office when I am finished.”  Akachi is annoyed.

“I was in the neighborhood and decided to save you a trip.”  Kejak enters the workshop.

Akachi grunts as if he did not believe Elder Kejak and continues to oil the sword.

“The Essence output for the Cry of the Blazing Pheasant Manse is at sixty-three percent.”

Akachi pauses. “Maidens, a fourth of the Southern direction gets power from that Manse.  Did you send Posala to check it out?”

“She is already there for a few hours, but isn’t making much progress.” Elder Kejak leans against one of the workbenches.   “As I took care of the water treatment plant a few days ago, I do believe that it is your turn to try to decipher the mysteries of Twilight Magitech.”

Akachi gives the Sword a final wipe and then places it in an ornate velvet lined box.  “What am I going to do about Svante?’

Elder Kejak continues.  “You had no trouble leaving Svante alone before.  No Lunar has set foot in Yu-Shan in over seven centuries.  Are you really going to leave millions of people without power to ease your anxiety?  “

“No,” Akachi closes the latches on the box.   “I can bring him with me.”  You are surprised.  Akachi never brings you with him when he goes on repair trips.  You have always wondered why.

“And leave the ladies of the South bereft of your company?“  You giggle when you realize what Elder Kejak is talking about.  That explains why Akachi always leaves you at home.

“If I have to.”  Akachi faces Elder Kejak and crosses his arms.  “Though I assume you have a suggestion.”

“I can take Svante with me when I go to Creation and drop him off at the school.  Tomorrow he can leave with Chiyoko and the others to the Tournament.  “

Akachi shakes his head. “I just got him out of that school and you want to send him back?”

Kejak turns to you.  “What do you want to do, Svante?   What would make you most happy?”

What would you like to do?

  • Go with Akachi to the power plant. You have never seen inside of one before!
  • Have Elder Kejak drop you off at the school. The more time you spend with the Dragon blooded Circle the more they remember you
  • Stay home. With Akachi always looking over your should, you haven’t had a chance to try to cast a sorcery spell.  If Aiko can do it, you can do it!
  • Other

((OOC:   I didn’t my post chapter cleanup of the archive site and added the Chapter three character.  I also added page for Svante’s character sheet.     ))