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Stories from the Verse
Versers Versus Versers
Chapter 18: Kondor 157
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Previous chapter: Chapter 17: Takano 3
With the doors and curtains all open to catch every scrap of the rare and not ever cool breeze, Kondor could clearly hear Lauren’s voice in the hall. He could less clearly hear that Shella had responded from her room before Lauren continued.
“I was just talking with Derek, and he suggested that I should teach you some psionics. Bob said it was a good idea and I should ask you about it.”
It was Zeke’s echoing voice that responded. “Is that offer open to me?”
“Oh!” Lauren seemed genuinely surprised. “Well, I guess so. I mean, I don’t mind if it’s O.K. with Joe?”
“Not to say he doesn’t matter, ma’am, but Joe’s a friend, not a chaperone.”
“And Joe has no objections,” Kondor called, “although he’d like to be included in the classes, too.”
Lauren laughed. “So Bob, what about you?”
From the sound of the voices, Slade was coming up the hall. “Oh, you know me, Lauren. I dabble; I don’t take anything serious that isn’t about fighting.”
“But you know that a lot of my psionics are very much about fighting--the shield and the blades notable among them.”
“But would it be fair to use mental powers in a fight?”
“Why not? They’re just weapons. They’re not even necessarily better weapons--just different weapons.”
“Yeah, O.K., maybe I’d like to learn a few weapons.”
She laughed again. “Oh, no. You’re going to have to learn a few more basic skills before we get to creating invisible forces. I’m not going to have you blowing up the planet botching on something way beyond your ability.”
Kondor’s mind’s eye could see Slade nodding from the sound in his voice. “That’s reasonable. Where and when?”
“This afternoon? After dinner?”
“Gee, let me check my schedule. Nope, nothing planned. Where?”
“I think maybe the gym is the best place. We’ve got space, a few props, and some rugs on the floor. And it’s not out in the sun, and a bit more private than the courtyard.”
“Consider it a date. Everybody in?”
There was a general chorus of agreement, and Kondor added his voice to it. They were always talking about sharing skills, but rarely found the opportunity to do it. Last time Lauren decided to do this he learned how to read minds just before the three of them raced off to save a space station from destruction; maybe this time he’d learn telepathy or something.
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with ten other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #323: Verser Crises. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: