63.1 \ 245

Draig had decided on a hidey-hole off the map, something with comfort and sustenance before they were off to wherever they were going on the run in their untraceable vehicle. Campaign logistics. He knew Derringer already knew the place, and it turned out that the kid, Toller also of single appellation, did too. The place was at least new to Soleil, so the spot wasn’t entirely blown. A local bird of paradise had adopted them, and decided to cheer them on with its loud, clear call.

They had one of the rooms above Joe’s seaside tavern in Dalmeera, rather than one of the subterraneans. They were all sitting on the floor with mugs of Hot Silver, which Toller was also allowed. Draig had been coaching the others on how to support his intended trance; that was mostly to be present, quiet, attentive, and ready to respond. He felt confident that he understood the ability of his special operational privilege well enough to get some of the information they needed. He could figure out how to begin as certainly as starting up a familiar vehicle. This was a sort of seeking, which he’d done before with this being (but which has always never been done before).

He closed his eyes; then he opened the first door, which he had known was there. Like the entry to a cellar, it wasn’t a place that was needful to go. Draig would consider himself someone who only approached unfamiliar mental states needfully, and here he went opening the door. It wasn’t locked, and it wasn’t really a door, just a helpful human analogue for the portal which he was sure had its own special word, if it existed for anyone else.

After the first door was another door. This was a different place. This was not inside his own mindspace, even though that was how he accessed it. He saw his own mind differently, as a place that was connected to other nearby places, like a house in a neighborhood with a street outside. This street, which he’d accessed by stepping neatly out of his own mind, was made of these portals. Each successive portal was one choice out of many, with ways back to where one began, like in physical space. The Viridian Phasing was a different version of space, and this experience of it was an adaptation to his human existence. It was similar yet different to the way he’d traveled it before, less voluntarily just before the fleet had been attacked. His intention shaped this process into something more familiar, his keyholder access as the original point organizer.

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