AUGUST 24th, 1600.

“So if you copy this rune set like so,” Ahr’tur Llewellyn continued, showing the two girls how to copy a Way-gate’s destination track to facilitate some strange variation of a tracking spell. “You’ll be able to co-opt the enchanted object’s owner tag and-”

“DAD.” That Nahgi Llewellyn was upset was a VAST understatement. Kana Mayoi knew that her room mate was definitely more than upset. Murderous would be too extreme, however. What was a good word for a balance between “Upset” and “I want to stop trying to distract me with Waygate hacks, and answer my original question!” Oh, wait, yes, that last part wasn’t in Kana’s head at all. It had practically assaulted her ears in a shrill tone common to teenage girls of this ripe, young age of sixteen-ish.

‘Actually,’ Kana paused for a moment, ‘when IS Nahgi’s birthday again?’

“Nahgi-” the older Lamia began, removing his glasses, and allowing his red eyes to shimmer slightly in dismay. “I thought we could-”

“WHAT?!” Nahgi cried out- angry at her father for reasons thusly summarized, “You want to put off our trip to Relheim for ANOTHER year!? What is it this time?” She pointedly glared at him with her own red eyes. “More Ancient Alien conspirators!? Plutocrats who think they have the right to dig for oil and claim they were looking for fossils instead!?”

“It’s nothing like that, Nahgi,” Ahr’tur Llewellyn tried to counter in as calm of a tone as possible. “You know my job keeps me busy at odd hours…”

“YEAH, SURE,” Nahgi glared, “but it always seems to be whenever we have something PLANNED first.” She then hissed, “Why? Why is it that whenever I want to spend time doing NORMAL things with my DAD that a Dad and Daughter SHOULD be doing- you have to go away on some Top Secret Dig in the middle of nowhere and leave me behind!?”

“Nahgi, it’s-”

“IS IT ME!?” Nahgi was crying, or struggling to not cry and failing miserably. Kana wasn’t sure which, but it didn’t really matter much at the moment, because tears were falling. “IF YOU HATE ME SO MUCH, THEN JUST GO ALREADY.” And with that, Nahgi Llewellyn turned and slithered off, her snake-headed hair writhing in barely concealed anger and distrust.

“I don’t hate you…” Ahr’tur said in a whisper as he watched her go.

“You know,” Kana mused aloud for a moment, “you remind me of who my mother would be if she actually cared to try to connect… and still failed at every conceivable level.”

“What?” Ahr’tur turned to look at the dragon for a moment. “Of course I’m trying! It’s not my fault work keeps giving me assignments out of-”

But it’s not enough,” Kana interrupted, then sighed. “I’m going to go see if I can calm her down. Just go on your dig- or whatever top secret thing it is you really do for those people you call bosses.” And so she took off at a run, trying to catch up to her room mate before she did something in a fit of spite. “Nahgi! Nahgi! Wait up!”

Thus, Ahr’tur Llewellyn stood there at the Yuugo Yisela Waygate, wondering how he could ever make it up to his daughter. And how did he wonder if he could just maybe ask if someone else took this job. Olaf, maybe? Or maybe Mui-?

Interrupting his thoughts, a certain something in his jacket pocket buzzed sharply at him, reminding the man that his top secret job would not wait for him to come up with an answer to this problem.

Sometimes, being a secretive member of a conspiracy group sucked.


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