Fiona tossed restlessly in her furs. The blizzard winds howled inhumanly and from time to time the shelter the boys had built last fall creaked and moaned around them. Eyeing the fire pit, she decided it needed more wood. She slipped from beneath her furs and gasped at the cold temperature of the room. Hurriedly, she threw two more logs on the fire and jumped back to her warm bed, shivering. Trying to dispel her goosebumps, she snuggled in her furs and lay back to watch the fire as it slowly engulfed the logs.
-- How long have you been able to mindspeak? -- Fiaz’s quiet voice in her mind startled her. Was he talking to her? Then she realized what he had said. Mindspeak? She couldn’t mindspeak - she had no kyor. That in mind though, how was she supposed to reply without waking everyone?
-- You mindspoke me earlier, while you were applying the poultice. --
What? Not her. She wouldn’t have the slightest idea how to mindspeak someone. Elise could, and so could Andrew, so it must have been one of them, or else Gabriella. Surely he knew the difference?
-- You have a Gift. The Healing Gift. Dubious as you may be, it has served as a catalyst in opening your mind. Healing is a form of kyor, after all. It would seem that your ability has recently surfaced. --
Fiona frowned. A Healing Gift? He couldn’t know how ironic that was – the sight of blood made her queasy ever since Cedric. She didn’t recall mindspeaking anyone either, you had to have... kyor’rishtan, wasn’t it? – to mindspeak someone and she didn’t have any.
-- Healing is a gift associated with kyor’rishtan. Your Gift is quite strong, yet something seems to stand before it, not allowing it to manifest properly. --
Gift? Quite strong? Ha! She didn’t even know she had kyor of any kind. If she understood Fiaz correctly, something was blocking it. She thought about that for a moment or two, a sudden suspicion lurking in the back of her mind....
No. He was wrong, that was all. Mistaken. And wouldn’t she remember mindspeaking someone? Of course. He had just... read... someone else, that was all. Rick, maybe, or Elise.
A small noise began to reverberate through her mind, a, a growl of some kind. Fiaz was growling lowly at her.
She sighed deeply, squeezing her eyes shut tightly. Oh all right! She didn’t ask for this Gift, she didn’t want this, this blocked Gift! The growling stopped.
It’s probably time I should reply, she thought, though she hadn’t the slightest notion of how to go about projecting thoughts. Andrew and Elise did, maybe she should wake one of them and ask....
Fiona caught a glimpse of Fiaz’s amber eyes glinting in the firelight and knew with a sinking heart that she was would need to figure it out herself. Very well. She cast around in her mind, looking, she supposed, for a way to send thoughts. But she should probably have something specific to say. Since he seemed to know what she was thinking anyway, probably the truth was best.
She returned to exploring the depths of her mind for a bit, trying to discover the right way, hoping she would simply stumble across the process, or at least that a clue might surface, like a road sign or something. After a time, Fiona gave up, unsuccessful. Frowning in frustration, she tried a new approach.
-- You’ll understand if I’m a little skeptical about all of this. -- Had it worked? Something told her it had worked.
-- Naturally. You Outworlders are more than ‘a little’ skeptical about most everything. --
Fiona, however, had no reply to this, for she was marveling that she had spoken to someone mind-to-mind, that she had actually sent her thoughts to someone!
-- Feel you still that I was ‘mistaken’, then? -- Fiaz’ mental voice was quite amused.
-- Well, no. But.... -- Fiona cut off the mental contact. She didn’t want this Healing Gift, at least not... not with a --
-- We must work on this block of yours. --
Dismay and fear caught Fiona in a cold grip.
-- We must. Knowledge of your Gift without use of it will further obstruct your power. -- Fiaz’s voice was firm but gentle.
Fiona didn’t need the Healing Gift – she had gotten along just fine without it. If it was – she swallowed – blocked off, then maybe it was for the best. Leave it be.
-- It must be removed, -- Fiaz asserted. -- Allowing it to remain will only cause it to grow. Eventually such smothering will be harmful to you - and possibly to others, -- he finished, not unkindly.
Fiona considered that. If he was right – but no. There had to be a way around it. She couldn’t allow exploration of that block, she just couldn’t. She didn’t want to deal with what they might find.... No. She couldn’t allow it.
Fiaz growled rudely in her mind with disgust.
-- You are even more stubborn than my mindmate. More, perhaps, than DarRic. Most deplorable.--
Taken aback by his rude demeanor, Fiona thought, Well! The nerve of him. She could see now why Elise was often delivering caustic remarks to the zary’andu. Hmph! What made him so worthy to judge? Briefly she searched her admittedly small reserve of rude retorts.
-- In my world, -- she said, allowing her mindvoice to become slightly lofty, -- we have a saying: It takes one to know one. --