One Little Accident...
by Deona Lindholm
Author's Note: This story takes place a couple weeks after the fall of Highland and is connected to "All The Time In The World".
As a new morning started, Luc looked about him as he prepared to report to a new training area, as Leknaat told him to do the night before.
Two weeks since I returned from the war in Jowston and I still can't find my way around here without getting lost a couple of times, he thought, Hard to believe that while I was in Mielle Castle Leknaat moved her location again.
He shook his head when the thought of the war popped into his mind, as the pain from a death was still just as strong as the day he learned about it...if not worse.
"Kiba was all right, I guess," he said out loud to himself, "He knew what he was getting into at the old fortress. But Nanami...it's my fault she died. I should have gone after her and Rian. Blast it..."
Luc quickly brushed away tears that always came when he thought about Nanami or the incident in Rockaxe. Then he quickly tried to regain his composure as he quickly left his room.
No sooner did he leave the Quarters' building than he found himself sitting on the ground, face smarting.
"Ouch, that hurt," he heard a young woman remark, most likely the one that caused him to be knocked down.
"Hey! You had better learn to watch where you're going," he snapped at her, "Are you trying to get me killed or something?"
"Oh, dear! I'm really sorry," the young woman said as she got up, "I'm just in a big hurry. Here, let me help you up."
"I can get up by myself just fine," he growled and glared at her as he got to his feet, "What is so important that you run about with no regard for anybody?"
"I said I'm sorry. I got here late last night," she explained as she gathered books that had been knocked to the floor.
Luc looked at the girl closely. She was as tall as he was and had black hair braided and wrapped around her head. She was wearing a strange dress style that he never saw before.
"Advanced fighting with Quarterstaffs? Earth and Lightning Magic?" he asked, "What do you think you are, some type of a mage?"
"Oh...yes. I'm a new student, but right now, I'm trying to find my aunt," she replied as she straightened out her books, "Where is Training room 5?"
He paused for a moment, then reluctantly said, "That's where I'm headed. You might as well come along."
"You sure you wouldn't mind?" she asked.
"Before I change my mind," he added gruffly and started off to the left side of the island.
"Oh...okay. Please, wait for me!" she called out and ran a bit to keep up with him.
What a brat! she thought, or maybe I caught him on a bad day. I know my aunt said I'd be training with a second student...I don't know if I should hope that he's that one or not.
"Since you're going to be here for quite a while," Luc stated, "I may as well know your name."
She nodded and replied, "My name is Eireadel Xylein, but everyone calls me Eirea."
"Eirea...a rather unusual name, I have to admit. What reason would you have to come here?"
"I don't know if I should say it or not, but...you know how most people can handle all kinds of Runes, but have a proficiency for only one kind of Rune?"
"Yes, Leknaat mentioned that when I first started learning from her. What about it?" he asked harshly.
"Well...it was discovered that I have a proficiency in two of them: namely Lightning and Earth Runes," she replied but did not go more into detail.
Luc simply hmphed with disdain and said, "Well, here we are, room 5. Do me a favor and stay out of my way."
Eirea said nothing and walked in.
Inside, Leknaat was admittedly anxious inside, although she wouldn't do such things as pace the floor when she heard the door open and saw Luc and the young lady come in...and it looked like he was in a rather bad mood.
"Good," she said, "You both came in. I won't have to worry about things, then."
Luc said, "Hmph," and put his gear on the floor in the corner.
"Goodness, girl," Leknaat aexclaimed, "What happened? Your nose is a bit swollen."
She touched her nose, winced and said, "A little accident on the way. Nothing major."
Luc glared and said, "A little accident, she says..."
"I'll be the judge of that, young lady. Come here right now," Leknaat ordered her.
She sighed and nodded, walking over to the older person, standing still as she was examined.
"Hmm...it'll heal with some rather cold water. At least you didn't break it. And your forehead will get quite a bruise for a while. I'll make sure you get a map of the area so you don't get lost again," she replied, "And you should cut down on the running in the halls or you'll have more accidents, Eirea."
Luc suddenly asked coldly, "Is someone else supposed to be here? Eirea said she was supposed to report here as well."
Eirea turned and asked, "Um...who is the training partner you mentioned, Aunt Leknaat?"
"Training partner? I don't need a training partner!" he exclaimed and a few seconds later, the other half of her question hit him hard, "Wait a minute...Aunt Leknaat?"
Leknaat sighed and explained, "Perhaps I had better introduce you two. Eirea...the young one is Luc...and he is your training partner, so to speak, as you are both my students as of today. Luc...Eirea is my niece."
Eirea turned to look at him and said, "Him? Aunt Leknaat, are you serious?"
"No kidding," Luc angrily said, "I work alone and I train alone."
"I am quite serious. Luc, since there is more than one student now, you must train together," Leknaat said firmly.
Eirea took a deep breath and nodded, then said as she went to get her quarterstaff, "You do have a lovely name, Luc."
He felt his face grow hot as he managed to say, "T...thanks."
Eirea returned with her weapon and asked after looking at it and the Wind Rod, "Uh...Aunt Leknaat, should I get a shorter stick? It'd be unfair as it is."
"No. In real battles, you take every advantage you can get."
Luc looked at her and asked, "What? You're afraid you'll get knocked down?"
Eirea replied, "No...I'm fine. You'll be the one getting knocked around."
Leknaat shook her head as Luc started the daily training with a type of fury. She thought, This is going to be rather lively from now on...are they ever going to get along?