April 13, 2016 by Lyn Thorne-Alder
The world seemed different as they walked back to their dorms. Aronnie had given them a few good ideas, but they had given themselves even more to think about.
“Do you think…” Taikie would begin, and then she’d fall quiet again.
“Maybe we could…” Saydrie would start, and shake his head.
“What if we…” Enrie would try, but it was too big for them.
“Maybe if we interfere with things again, this time,” Taikie joked nervously, “none of us will get hit over the head. I didn’t really like that part.”
“None of us liked you getting hurt, Taikie.” Saydrie frowned at her, then turned the frown on Enrie. “And we don’t want you to get hurt, either.”
“No,” Enrie agreed. “We don’t.” It seemed almost trivial compared to the concerns of a revolution, a school falling apart. “We don’t want Edally falling apart, either,” she tried.
“No,” Taikie agreed. “But I think, um… well, Edally has been here for centuries. It’s books and teachers and people and buildings. That’s a lot to knock over. You’re, well, you’re my friend, but you’re just one person. It’s a lot easier to knock over one student.”
“It is.” Enrie chewed on her lip. “Like Instructor Pelnyen was trying. Like Instructor Kaasmasik was trying…”
“Technically, I think he was trying to prop you up. Are we going to talk to Ulunumani?”
“We are. Though I’m still not sure exactly what I’m going to say…” Enrie frowned. “I need a proper plan. One with aims and targets and acceptable losses and things like that.”
“Well.” Taikie raised her chin and smiled. “We can do that. Let’s meet tomorrow in the Library and work it out.”
The Library. “Just the three of us?” Enrie wasn’t sure she wanted to share this with anyone else, not yet.
“Just the three of us,” Taikie agreed. “If Riensin wants in, he’s just going to have to wait. And I bet he will want in. That boy wants to be part of everything.”
The boy probably just wanted to be a part of Taikie’s life, but if her friend hadn’t noticed yet, Enrie wasn’t going to point that out. “He and his team can wait. The three of us at the Library, then. Right after class?”
“Sounds good.” Taikie nodded, then stopped and held up both hands. “Now, this is going to sound a little bit hypocritical, I suppose, but don’t go running off and figuring out the whole thing without us tonight.”
Enrie smiled. “I won’t. I’m going to go up to my dorm room and read. Maybe spend some time listening to my house-mates talk. And then I am going to go happily to sleep.”
“That sounds like a good idea,” Saydrie agreed. “I’m going to do something similar.”
“Me, too.” Taikie stretched and yawned. “Or maybe just the sleep part.”
Enrie parted company with them at the base of Onano tower. She went upstairs slowly, thinking about treaties and cheaters and everything else that had been making the semester a mess.
She really wanted to do what she’d told her team, but instead, she sat down at her desk and pulled out a piece of paper from her folder.
She needed a plan, that much was certain. But there was a long way between needing a plan and coming up with one.
What was she going to do?