If I fall from one of these trees, I hope I don’t survive. Rather, I hope I have the presence of mind to shift back in time and not make the mistake that kills me. At some point I need to gather my nerve and master this expression that has been mine since I was a child. I didn’t choose it, but I am doing myself no great service by refraining from embracing it.
This of course sets off all kinds of alarms in my mind, not least of which is what happens if I slip and use my ability within range of the Daedric presence? Is it worth my life to compromise the secrecy of our mission? But then I am just allowing the fear to dictate my actions under the guise of nobility. I need to master myself as much as my expression.
How many of my problems would I have solved by taking a step just a few minutes backwards in time? How many ill words spoken could I have retracted? Deaths dealt I could undeal? I haven’t dwelt upon those questions for a long time; I shouldn’t start now.
Inifra had tea and some new fruit ready for us when we descended the trees for the final time today. Refreshing, we were happy to eat something immediately upon completion of the day’s exercise. The fruit itself was cut into cubes, though she said it came from something shaped like a pear. The meat was dense but tender, and sweet. I asked her to find us more and she laughed. “If the Batsu leave anything for us to scavenge, you know I will.”
She will leave us in two days’ time. Tomorrow will be the last evening we make camp with the larger army, and then they will leave us behind. Timber and Inifra will carry north, and with them the final sense of this party we have formed over the last year. Balthandar, Bolton, and even traitorous Starlark are all gone. Without Inifra and Timber, it will be only Dionus and I left.
Strange to think that Inifra never spent any time with Bolton, though the old slaver befriended a number of her lesser priestesses. He died before she became an ally, a friend. I will not be ungrateful for the fact that we continue to gain new friends in the wake of our many losses. I pray the separation that approaches does not amount to a loss, but merely a temporary parting of friends. We will see them again.
I’m going to go drag Timber into a surprise lesson just for good measure. We won’t get many opportunities for a long while.