The next morning all three of them walked to Penn Station. Maya was still having trouble walking so she had a cane and it helped a little bit. The dizziness had mostly gone away and she felt clear-headed for the first time since the fall. She was also feeling a little worthless and vulnerable even with two other Ishim walking ahead of her. She was nervous abou taking the trip and also nervous about what would be at the end of it. The idea of speaking in front of hte council was humbling.
Council members weren’t the most accessible members of the Ishim. They tended to contact normal members by paper only. They usually only socialized with other council members and were rarely spotted out of their safe refuges. This was a rare opportunity that could go well or really badly. The council was comprised of some of the longest lived magic practitioners which made them skilled, powerful or connected.
It could not have been a coincidence for one of them to have been in town when Kerry and Maya had been attacked. The Grand Maeve was one of the two most formidable magic users in the world. People went back and forth on who was better at magic between the Maeve and the Oberon. The truth was that at that level it really didn’t matter. They were both amazingly and terrifyingly powerful. The idea that the Grand Maeve had tended to hers and Kerry’s wounds was like Ruth Bader Ginsberg had stopped by to act like a nurse.
She tried to focus on the present instead of their destination. She looked ahead at Kerry and Ivy who were deep in conversation. It was a discussion that Maya had heard none of so she couldn’t really follow it or jump in. She felt a little bit like a third wheel. She began to wonder why they even brought her along. Kerry had seen everything that Maya had and could report it just as easier than bringing Maya along to join in.
Ivy turned around and started to walk backwards, effortlessly keeping pace with her sister. She had a guitar low slung against her hip and it bounced slowly as she moved. She grinned at Maya.
“Awfully quiet back there. Are you doing alright?” She asked
Maya nodded. “Everything is still very sore but I’ll be OK. At least I think so.” Maya said, she thought she was keeping a good pace even with the bruised ribs and the cane.
“Nice. You’re a trooper. I don’t know if I could be soldiering on like you are. You’re a real champ.” Ivy said with a smile that made Maya smile in return. Each backwards footstep was perfectly placed in just the right rhythm that Ivy needed.
Maya blushed and kept going, the sudden warmth in her body made her pain lessen a bit. “Is that a guitar?” She asked, her voice softer than what she would liked.
“Oh yeah. I bring it everywhere. It’s the language through which my spells flow.” Ivy responded.
“What? What does that mean?”
Ivy smiled and ran her hand over the guitar. “As you know, spells are cast through a force of will and either a verbal command or a mental one. That helps focus the concept forming inside of you as you will the spell into being. Music is kind of like my verbal command which makes my spells less focused and harder to predict and defend against. Some people call my spells “area of effect” spells and when used in tandem with a power hitter they’re pretty bad ass.” She said with a big smile.
“Wow, I’ve never even heard of that.” Maya said.
“It’s really weird but effective.” Kerry said without turning around.
Ivy laughed. “She just says that because she’s often my heavy hitter. Are you a heavy hitter, Maya?”
“I guess I’ve hit hard in my day. My trainer said I was dangerous at great distances.”
“A sniper? You might just be useful after all, Rabbit.” Kerry said with a smile.