* hunkered over the writing desk in Nevermoor *
It is with some concern that I write to both you and Yamada-sama Father dear. I fear that I have exceeded my ability and also allowed emotion to control me rather than the logic of the Temple and the clan.
I have been studying the behavior of a spirit named Metier who many claimed was mad both in life and death. I have had a few talks with him and found the spirit to be highly erratic in thinking and possibly delusional. Yamada-sama has taught us that these spirits are dangerous and to avoid their suggestions. I must confess that I have ignored that last part and have accepted a burden from him, which he claims to be sharing still, and may have placed myself in peril.
Before either or you start in berating me, give me leave to say that I did this for my concern and love of Babbage rather than any personal glory. You both have always said that the talent manifested greater in me than in any other miko you have known. I have also been very successful in working with English ghosts which both of you have also acknowledged. That being said, I felt that I was within my limits to attempt this. Now you may have your “I told you so” moment.
Now that is over with, here is what happened. A large group assembled in the graveyard at the spirit’s request I think. There was much anger in the air along with sorrow and despair. Miss Maddox seemed to be the target for much of the spirits comments. This lingered for quite a while with the comment that another citizen by the name of Arnold was no longer in the material world but had been transported to another. This has happened in Babbage before and seems to be considered normal. I know of a kitsune who lives here as an urchin who has that talent as well as a few others who suffer from a bone fever. I wonder if the talent is a result of it or the cause? No matter; after a heated discussion the spirit Metier announced that he would leave this material world if someone would share a burden with him that concerned the well being of the city. None had the faith to step forward so I did. Was I stupid to do so? I truly can not answer this. I felt driven by my feelings that this was the correct thing to do. All three of us understand giri, the duty bound honor. Perhaps I took this on as I believe in giri and faith. After all, it is what you two have taught me since the day I could understand the concepts. In any case, the spirit walked through me and then disappeared. As he passed through, I could feel a link, or a bonding, or a connection…call it what you will. However, I could then feel Babbage as a spirit. It is definitely female in substance. It contains much hope and fear and anger and desire to be consoled and protected. It feels like a child at times and as a woman at others. The one thing that is a constant is that it is afraid.
I have traveled between my home in Nevermoor and Babbage several times now. One thing that I find odd is that the connection never breaks, even after I have traveled a distance over water. I also tire more easily than I ever have. Sometimes my mind wanders also. Other than this I do not feel any different. It is like we are getting used to each other.
I currently am searching for a nexus where this city spirit might reside. I am not sure one exists. If I find it I will try a formal invocation to see what I can do to help. It would seem I have assumed the mantel of protector in some fashion. I do not know where this will lead, if the spirit Metier will assist in any fashion, if any of the other citizens in Babbage can help, nor if I will even be able to quiet this spirit. Belldandy knows all of this and watches me carefully. She fears the spirit Metier’s madness will manifest in me. My house ghost Tasha sees no change in me….yet.
Your loving daughter and miko
Maddox sighed and rolled over in bed, staring at the wall. She still could not believe that she had allowed such a thing to happen. Where was her fortitude? It seems that in an effort to live for others, she had become oddly afraid of duty. If she had a great power that she could use to protect people, why the blazes didn’t she use it?
She needed to learn how to contain and use her gifts fairly soon. This could not continue. She would find a way to make this up to Miss Hermit. She most definitely would…
You shouldn’t be so hard on yourself, Dr. Lionheart. Miss Hermit is, I think, uniquely equipped for this task.
Then, too, it was probably best that someone with less direct experience of Metier fill the role–soemone who would have at least a chance of being objective. That certainly wouldn’t describe us. *wry grin*
Precisely the reasons I sought her help on the matter, though I certainly didn’t expect it to go this far. I’d have rathered take up Metier’s burden myself than let it afflict Ms. Hermit. I just hope we can help her continue with a normal healthy life despite this new aspect.
Helio and I will be going to see her soon. I need to say I’m sorry in person. I know she doesn’t need to hear it, but that time will be for my peace of mind. I hate that anyone had to deal with him, but as long as she knows that I’m here to help her in any way she needs, we can all feel better.