8092/Getting Some Air

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Getting Some Air
Date of Scene: 29 September 2021
Location: Kyshan: Kian's estate
Synopsis: Gar seems to have a big sister now.
Cast of Characters: Kian, Gar Logan

Kian has posed:
    The first thing that's immediately obvious from the air is that if you didn't know Kían's home was below, you'd be hard pressed to find it.  Kían has said before that his people prefer to insinuate themselves into nature rather than impose themselves upon it, and that's more than evident.  For an advanced technological civilization, they really haven't made many immediately visible changes to their world.
    Well, a few.  There are clearly areas that are used for farming, the plants growing in neat squares, the green occasionally broken by the glint of sunlight off one of the farming robots that maintain it.
    The air smells fresh and clean, and the gravity is noticeably, although not greatly, less than that of Earth.
    And the wild birds are everywhere, brightly colored blurs of red and yellow and blue or shadowy flickers of brown and black and even green—not counting Gar himself.
    Kían keeps a lot of feeders around, and even in his absence they were maintained, judging by the number of birds and tree-living animals that are around.  The rut'yw with which Gar is already familiar, and birds of all sizes, about kestrel-sized on down, the names of which are still a mystery to anyone not of this world.
    A flashy robin-sized bird flits past, multicolored like a lorikeet but streamlined like a swift.  Above, a flock of jay-sized birds flutters in to perch in the branches, blue bodies with red wings like a cardinal.
    None of them would be especially out of place on Earth, however.  Just something different that evolution did with a basic bird form, apparently.
    Below are clear spaces other than the land being tilled.  Maybe they're access ways between estates for things too large to carry.  There's a bowl-shaped space sunk into the ground with a flat bottom, incongruously paved, although the cement or tarmac or whatever it is, is faintly greenish as if trying to blend in a little with its more natural surroundings.  And off to the west is a large lake.
    The thing that's really missing is the sound of civilization—no rumble of vehicles or whine of jets or whup-whup-whup of helicopters, no sirens, no horns, no rumble of people in their masses.  It's quiet, and to a city boy, maybe even too quiet.

Gar Logan has posed:
    After leaving Kían's home as a sparrow, Gar shot up into the sky to seek a little clearing of his thoughts.  There were so many.  He'd seen memories of this place, so there was a bit of base familiarity in that regard, but it's never the same as actually being there.
    He never thought he'd actually be there.  Just another thing he can thank (or blame) Vorpal for, though if they do manage to find their way back to Earth, what a story to tell.  They should be able to.  Where there's a will, there's a way.  Terry, Donna, Caitlin, and Victor came back from another dimension.  Why couldn't Gar, Terry, and Kían come back from here?  If Kían wants to, that is.  Prior conversation hinted at that being the case, given what Gar took from it.
    First things first.  He wasn't used to all the voices and whispers and mental senses he was getting here as an Akiár.  It was fine when it was just Kían, but here it's multiplied, magnified, more difficult to comprehend and balance.  Bad?  No.  Different?  Yes.  Something that won't be immediately balanced?  Absolutely.
    So, he did what he could think of to temporarily sever that connection: he dropped the Akiár form and flew as a true bird.  Upon seeing a few different kinds, he focused on them and tried to become them, going first by sight, his body adapting and changing to create an adequate representation.  It makes him being an Akiár a little more remarkable, since there wasn't much time to study or even understand them initially, and something built into it all led to him gaining the same abilities as well.
    As something more kestrel-like in appearance and size, he spreads his wings and lets the current carry him along, with any updrafts, circling the fields and the rest below.  He knows the direction he came from, in regard to Kían's residence, but finding it again might take some extra focus.  "Boy, it sure is quiet here," he says to himself, and not just because that mental link is shut off at the moment.

Kian has posed:
    It isn't too long after Gar takes to the air that there are additional departures—kestral sight is kestral sight, so it's clearly Kían's family, although his sister peels off from the others, dropping down to just above the canopy, lazily cruising along with no apparent direction in mind.  His parents are definitely heading somewhere, probably to their own home.
    Kían was not kidding when he said his world was peaceful.  There might be a contrail in the distance, but otherwise the sky looks clear, with just a few clouds.  To the east, perhaps another Akiár taking a flight, but too far away to be sure which direction they're going just yet.
    A native bird of the same type Gar has become swoops by as if checking out the stranger—its natural coloration is not too far off the typical brown and cream of a raptor—but it doesn't linger.

Gar Logan has posed:
    The green 'kestrel' tracks motion here and there, but Gar doesn't make too much of the departures.  A little time has passed, so they're probably going back to wherever it was they came from for the gathering.  The sister that leaves in a different direction is noted, but only for that much before he's back to circling.
    There's a lot to see, all of it peaceful.  Wide open spaces, little sign of the types of major cities Earth has, though it's also got a lot of areas like this as well, where fewer people live, where nature is at the forefront.  A part of him could get used to this.  Being as in tune with the animal world as he is, his appreciation of nature and the wild is greater than it is for many.
    Another bird angles closer, and he calls out, "Yo, s'up?" as if it's going to respond in that manner, but he surely doesn't expect it to.  And, on it goes.  "Not much of a talker.  I get it."

Kian has posed:
    The alien bird makes a satisfied sort of squawk, apparently having determined that Gar does not intend to be a competitor, cants its wings slightly, and glides off to the west in that effortless way of great soaring birds.
    Below, Shíri seems to be slowly circling the estate, as if she's looking for something.
    Or someone?

Gar Logan has posed:
    "Oh yeah?" Gar says, angling his head in a gesture of curiosity before smugly saying under his breath, "That's right.  Go on.  I'd kick your butt if I wanted to, hah." He's just joking.  Intentionally causing harm to another animal is…not in his nature, especially if it's avoidable.
    Moments later, he decides it's time to let the world back in, and he swiftly takes on a more human appearance, then wings.  He is an Akiár again, and he keeps his position in the sky with his arms extended slightly to either side, an upright posture kept.

Kian has posed:
    There is an immediate mental 'ping', gentle but unmissable, that indicates that the estate systems have identified Gar and noted that he does, in fact, belong here.  It also notes that Kían is on the premises, and Shíri.
    Which suggests that his presence has also been reported to them.
    Below, Shíri immediately veers off from her slow cycle around Kían's home and banks upwards.
    It isn't until she's sure that her presence is obvious that her mind reaches out, quite gently.  {Wing-brother Gar?}
    She waits a moment before adding, {I hope we didn't scare you away.  If we did, I'm sorry.  I suppose this has to be very strange for you.}
    Another pause, then {We… we weren't laughing at you and Téri.  You didn't understand what I said, did you?}

Gar Logan has posed:
    The mental connection is immediate, and by the time Shíri is looking his way, she will see Gar flutter and falter by a few feet before he steadies himself, back to hovering again with the use of those wings in a rhythm to hold altitude.  He look every bit the part of a true Akiár, except for the whole green thing.  His face and hairstyle are still mostly his own, with a little blending involved, and the digits are the correct number for Kían's people.
    When he feels her mental voice, he puts a little extra focus into it and asks, {Wing-brother?  Is that what I am to you?}  It's a simple question, something he had not really thought about.  Prior to this, even meeting anyone from Kían's family was not even on his mind.
    He turns toward her, watching her coming higher to meet him, and his mouth draws into a thin line at first.  {I'm… I don't know.  Overwhelmed by everything.  I've felt Kían's mind before, but all this?  How do you handle it?  I mean, I'm sure it's natural for all of you, but we don't have this as a way of talking, really.}
    There's a shrug of admission as he adds, {I don't really know what you were laughing at.  I wasn't… this at the moment.}  Now, he takes the time to really look at her, since there's less going on directly around them than back at the home.

Kian has posed:
    {All Akiár'yw are my wing-brothers and wing-sisters,} Shíri explains, {and I bet my brother has not explained our distinctions to you.  Well, anyway, if you're his tenár, then you're my brother, not just my wing-brother.}
    She flits up a little closer; she's got a smile very like Kían's.  {Everyone was laughing because I said the reason Kían wanted to go back to your world was because the sex with you and Teri was really good.  That… isn't against your customs, is it?  Or… Gods, I don't know.  The only reason I can get my head around you being an alien is because you're green all over.  And because you and Kían's other tenár is very not Akiár.  You look like one of us.  And your mind feels like one of us.  That had to mean a lot to Kían while he was on your world.}

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan holds position.  To the average Earther, this would probably look like two bird aliens just staring at each other.  For the Akiár, it is normal.
    {He's told me some things, and showed me a few things too, but it's never going to be the same as being… here.  I haven't even seen where more of you live yet, but I know he had a ship, so I know you have technology too.  It's just… well, I kind of feel like he probably did when he ended up on my planet.}  Definitely a reversal of roles for Gar, and for Vorpal.  These kinds of things are not just that easy to adjust to.
    The smile that leads to what she shares, it does have him blush.  His eyes dart away from her, then return, and he rubs the back of his neck self-consciously.  She might catch awkward thoughts and emotions through the mental link.  {Oh, ah, it's… it kind of depends.  On what people are into.  And stuff.  I mean, for a long time, I was just into girls, but then I met Vorpal but I met him as Terry and only later on found out he was Vorpal, but he was still learning what that meant and it was all really confusing, but we got closer and… you know.}  He waves a hand, like an accompanying gesture to the words.
    {And, Kían?  Someone brought him to us.  We have a group of people who can all do special things, and we help each other out and try to help protect others.  We had some really bad things happen and we stopped doing all that for a while, but some of us slowly started to come back together again, and when I met Kían I just…so the thing about me is I can become any creature I can imagine strongly enough.  A cat, or a dog, or an elephant, or a hawk, even a dragon.}  There are visuals he thinks of that accompany each animal mentioned.  {Anyway, when I met Kían, I guess I thought he needed to see something familiar to him and I managed to become one of you, and we could talk like this and that was weird for me but I've been getting more used to it until I felt everything here, but… he's been with our group ever since.}

Kian has posed:
    'Cat' and 'dog' and 'elephant' and 'dragon' pretty much go right over her head.  {Your planet sounds very weird,} she sends, sounding very much like her brother.  {Uh, well, sorry, not weird but really really different.  Which I guess it would have to be since it's an alien world.}
    She looks over Gar appraisingly.  {You must have made him feel very welcome,} she adds.  {Ever since his rhy'thar appeared he was always so out of sorts here, and that had to be worse on a strange planet.  Though maybe being among other rhy'thar recipients was what he needed.  He's a lot more… I don't know.  Comfortable with himself.}
    She gives that Kían-smile again.  {Thank you.}

Gar Logan has posed:
    Just the same, there are creatures here that are quite foreign to Gar, though he did surprise them with the dance of the duhón back there.
    He adjusts position, allowing himself to lower somewhat closer to the surface.  {It has me on it.  Of course it's weird.  Or different, yes.  Just like yours is.  I don't know a lot yet, but Kían has told me a few things.}
    Hands come to rest at his hips.  He's dressed similarly to the average Akiár, another way of fitting in.  {I just tried to give him some support and let him know there were people who would try to help him, no matter what happened.  I know it hasn't been easy for him.  I think he's relieved to be back here, but… I think he's also worried.  And… you're welcome.}

Kian has posed:
    {Oh, other than being green, you're normal.  At least right now you are,} Shíri sends with some amusement.  {Your other tenár, Teri?  Now he's different.  I—.}  She breaks off at a gentle alert from the estate systems and looks westward before drifting downward with Gar.  {Raká is coming,} she says unnecessarily; Gar would have gotten the same notification.

Gar Logan has posed:
    {I've never been normal.  Not for a long time, anyway.}  For Gar, just a few years counts as a long time, though in his case you'd have to go a little beyond that to cover the timeframe he's thinking about.  Sakutia.  The changes.
    He raises a brow, and clears his throat audibly, though he keeps consistent with the mindspeak.  {You should… be careful touching him.}  That's all he can suitably say before the information reaches them about Raká.  That news has him turning in the direction she does, continuing his descent further whether this means they end up landing or not.  {Kían's… tenár, yes?  I'm still learning a lot of the words.}

Kian has posed:
    {I did touch him, quite by accident.  I was right about the sex being amazing, wasn't I?} Shíri 'sends impishly.  {I mean, wow.  Whatever's going on inside his head, you should bottle it or something.  And yes, Kían's tenár.}
    «Kié, Raká!»  She waves, and Raká veers down in their direction.  She keeps the mental channel open for Gar's benefit.
    Raká pulls up into an easy hover.  «Kié, Shíi… Gar.»  His hesitation seems more borne of still trying to make heads or tails of the current situation than any problem with Gar.
    Shíri goes on breezily, «Everyone's coming to our parents' estate tonight to celebrate.»  It's not a question.

Gar Logan has posed:
    {The first time Kían did it, I think it was accidental too.  And now he has trouble stopping.}  Gar says in a conspiratorial manner.  {If you're not careful, you might meet the same fate.}
    Raká's arrival and the following verbal speak is a change, and he's thankfully able to follow more from Shíri keeping the connection up.  He recognizes a few words as it is, just from having heard Kían use them before, but most of it would be a little tough for him to pick up on.
    "Their estate?  I mean…." {Their estate?  And… hello, Raká.}  His hands clasp together behind him, as if awaiting closer inspection from the one Kían was closest to prior to appearing on Earth.

Kian has posed:
    «Yes, of course, we'll be there,» Raká replies, with a mental note that includes Kiar and Are as well.  «I can hardly believe he's really home.  Will you and Tere… Teri be staying with Kían then?» he asks, turning his attention to Gar.
    «For the time being,» Shíri puts in.
    She doesn't seem to have made any headway.  «It'll be so good to have him back!»
    Shíri's mental link, Gar can tell, is private and Raká will not overhear: {He doesn't know you might not stay, does he?}

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan acts, not subservient or anything of that nature, but rather quieter in the wake of the conversation that is led by Shíri and Raká.  He is still the visitor, the stranger, the outsider, wing-brother or not.  He offers both of them a brief smile, if awkwardly given, for it's what she says to him privately that causes it.
    {I… guess not.  I don't know what's going to happen with any of that.  We have friends who will try to find us once they figure out we're missing.  I was in another part of my planet, away from the others, and Kían and Terry came out to meet me and we were going to take a longer time to get back home, stopping to see different places.} he explains to her privately, before he adds for both, {I hope we're not making things too difficult for everybody.  I'm sure you all have a lot of questions about us… about me.  And Kían being gone.L}

Kian has posed:
    Raká laughs.  «I guess you don't know what kind of reputation our clan has.  If something strange is going to happen to an Akiár, it will happen to a t'Kaeh.»
    Shíri shakes her head.  «There's no arguing that, no.  Although this is a lot even by our standards.  No, Gar, we understand none of this is deliberate any more than Kían's disappearance was originally.  It was a lot more difficult to lose him than it is to get him back, and it's good to know he had good friends to be with.  Right, Raká?»
    Raká blinks.  «Uh, right.»

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan's hands return to his sides, and he keeps himself level with whatever altitude they've chosen.  He looks comfortable enough like that, Akiár instinct combined with his own knowledge of flying from different birds he'd been prior to all this.  {I don't exactly have a baseline of understanding when it comes to what's weird for you and what's not, and from what Kían's told me you're all pretty open about friendship and thoughts for each other and all that.  Where I'm from, I guess a lot of people are more, ah, shy about things like that.  Some aren't.}
    Then he holds up both hands, like a peace offering.  For a passive group of people, it could be funny.  {Yeah, we're… friends.  Close friends now.  He didn't think he'd ever see any of you again.}

Kian has posed:
    «You haven't got the ki'thar on your world, have you?» Raká asks.  «I didn't realize until I could catch my breath that I couldn't sense your other friend's mind.  You only have it because you can be one of us.  It's… even though you're green all over, you're shaped right… uh, I mean shaped like one of us.»  He sighs and shakes his head.  «I have not read enough fantastic fiction to handle things like this happening in real life.»
    Shíri gives him a grin.  «You're welcome to my library any time.»  Apparently, she has read enough, although what the science fiction on an advanced world of winged telepaths is like… no, just don't go there.
    «And I've been meaning to ask you, Gar—that pendant.  Has Kían told you what ours mean?»

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan shakes his head.  {No.  Well, there are some people that have it, but how they get it is different.  It isn't natural.  If I was the way I usually am, I wouldn't have it either.}  A brow slides upward at the 'shaped right' part and the correction, leading to a small twitch of his lips upward.  {We have lots of things people can watch and read.  There are some very creative and imaginative people where we're from.}
    It's the question of the pendant that has him reaching up to touch his own.  {He told me about the First Flight, and what it meant to you.  It's like a rite of passage to being an adult.  I took it, more as a favor to him, but also because I'd just come back from the dead, pretty much.  It's why I picked the phoenix.}

Kian has posed:
    Shíri and Raká stare at each other, then at Gar.  Raká opens his mouth, but nothing comes out.
    «What do you mean, you came back from the dead?» Shíri asks, unable to keep the shock out of either her voice or out of her mental touch.
    Raká tries again, and still nothing comes out.
    «People don't die and come back!» Shíri adds.
    Raká finally finds his voice.  «Are you a Rhyták too?»
    Shíri gives Raká a sharp look… but doesn't try to correct him.

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan holds up both hands.  {Wait, wait.  I didn't die.  I almost did.  I, uh, got caught by surprise by someone I never would have expected to attack me.}  Which is essentially true.  {And I was kind of, um, mauled and left for dead, and thrown into the ocean, but I was able to turn into a little sea creature called a starfish, because I remembered they could regrow limbs, and my teammates found me after a few days, then I was able to heal faster with their help.}  Regrow limbs?!
    His hands come together, fingers interlocking.  {No, I'm not a… one of those.  I was just lucky that I thought fast.  Really.}
    Then he perks up, eager to change the subject.  {Do you want to see my First Flight?  I think I can share the memory of what it looked like for me, right?}

Kian has posed:
    The subject isn't going to be changed quite that easily.  «Mortals can't do that,» Raká protests.  «Does your world have Rhyták'yw?  Maybe that's why you're here now.»
    «Stop it, Raká.  You know how Kían would be if he heard you saying that.»  Shíri sounds very much like a protective big sister.
    «Just because Kían doesn't want to be a Rhyták doesn't mean he might not be one.  And if he is, that makes this a lot easier to understand, right?  Kían has already been made Rhyták and I know he doesn't like it, but it's done.»  He smiles weakly at Gar.  «Our tenár is a demigod and doesn't want to be,» he explains.  «So since I'm not, it would make a lot more sense to me if you and Teri are.».
    «Raká… nnh.»  Shíri drifts a little closer to Gar.  «Yes, Gar, I think I would like to see that.»
    Raká nods agreement.  «Yes, please.»

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan's brows scrunch closer together at Raká in particular as he holds fast to his line of questioning, wherever it comes from.  Curiosity, interest, stubbornness, whatever it could be.  {You're asking if there are, what… gods where I'm from?  Kind of… sure.  But the only ones I know of that would be like that are from other worlds.}
    Which totally doesn't disqualify Kían from falling under that definition.  At all.
    {They just call people like us metahumans.  We have certain powers or gifts.  For some people it's genetic.  For others, it could be anything.  Magic, technology, radiation, whatever.  Or they might just be really, really good at what they do because of how much they've trained.  But that doesn't make us all gods, demigods, or anything like that.}
    It's tough to explain when Gar can't even explain it all that well.
    Shíri at least gives him a way out, and when Raká acquiesces he nods quickly in relief.  {Okay.  Yes.  First Flight.  He told me about it, and I thought it would be worth doing, so I got this.}  He fingers the pendant, the shape of the fiery bird, tinted a mixture of coppery and green swirls.  Then, he focuses on sharing the way Kían's showed him memories.  There is Kían on the rooftop, from Gar's perspective, Vorpal there as well, peripheral vision showing the green wings and feathers at times as they shift about.  A look out across a bay of water, showing the skyline of an advanced-looking city.  Metropolis.  Then a dive down the side of the tower.  A sense of a breath caught in the back of the throat.  Sharp eyes focused on the pendant sat on a pile of rock and stone down below, the surface rapidly rushing closer.  A change to alter his path to a more horizontal one, going wide to come back around.  A chill felt, the weather cool.  Moving quite fast.  there is a glimpse of his hand lowering, and then he passes the mark and begins to rise again.
    They can see his point of view still, eye contact made as he takes an updraft higher, until he's atop the tower again, a fist held out, the pendant dangling from its chain, Vorpal letting out a cheer, then Kían helping complete the right of passage with the question, then reminding the green Akiár to bow as expected, Kían then finishing the words.
    {That was pretty cool.}

Kian has posed:
    «That was a building you were on top of?  And those other large structures?  Where were all the trees?» Shíri asks.  «That building you used for the rite, that's your home?  Your family must be very important.»  Clearly, she thinks the Tower is all Gar's.
    Raká, on the other hand, looks very nearly smug.  Not quite, but very nearly.  «There, he is a Rhyták.  Otherwise he couldn't do a First Flight.  He's not a priest, so he must be a Rhyták
    Shíri does not look like she has an answer for that.

Gar Logan has posed:
    Nodding, Gar sends, {It's our home.  Everyone lives there who's part of our team, just about.  Kían, too.  He has a room that isn't too small for him, there's a nice window and everything.  We have some trees in a park on the other side, but that's one of our major cities you saw.}
    He examines the pendant for a moment, looking up with mild distraction at the expression Raká shows.  {What?} he asks, once more appearing confused.  {I knew how to fly, and I thought it would help Kían feel more comfortable if I did this with him.  He was telling me about his beliefs.}

Kian has posed:
    Shíri tries to take that in.  «So… each one of those towers is a sort of vertical estate?  And you and Kían and Teri have joined your houses, and live in that tower?  That looks like a very large city—how many live there, a hundred thousand?»  She shakes her head.  «It still looks strange without any greenery,» she adds dubiously.
    Raká, however, looks pleased.  «The rite seems to have been meaningful to you, too, Gar.  From your memory.  Even if you don't believe in our Gods yourself.»  He glances at Shíri.  «And you know I'm right—Kían accepted a priestly role, so he can't object to being made Rhyták
    Shíri bites her lower lip.  «Yeah, he probably can't now.  But he still won't want you calling him that.»

Gar Logan has posed:
    Wait, did Gar just… put Kían in a… oh, boy.  Kían won't be pleased with this.  Oops.  He opens his mouth as if to say something aloud, thinking better of it.  They might not understand anyway.  {…something like that.  It's like… a lot of people living in one place.  And there are parks, and forests.  We were staying the night in a large forest somewhere else, before we ended up here.  Kían wanted to go flying in the morning.  But the bigger city has at least a few million people living there.  Now you can guess why I'm glad we don't have this way of talking there.  Even out here, a few of your minds, and other things I can feel, it's not that easy for me to focus.}
    He's rubbing the back of his head again as they talk of Kían and priesthood and all that, and rather than answering the thoughts there he admits, {The First Flight brought us closer together, too.  We… care a lot for each other.}

Kian has posed:
    «I know you do,» Raká says, almost indifferently.  «He called you tenár, both of you.  My poor Kíi… he must have been terribly lonely until he met you.  I hope you will be as happy here with us as he has been there with you.»
    «Ka,» Shíri says delicately, «I… wouldn't count on them necessarily staying here forever.  They have friends and family there who are probably missing them as much as we did Kían.  You don't want them to go through what we did… do you?»

Gar Logan has posed:
    For this, Gar grows silent.  Silent, at least, in the sense of directly communicated thoughts.  There is nothing he can say that will make this situation any easier.  Either a way back will be found, or not.  Roles, at this time, have been reversed.
    What they may catch, then, is the inner turmoil in his head.  Thoughts conflicting, against each other, surface feelings, certain things that might make living here nice, others that might not.  He could likely adapt.  Would he have to forget his old life, and go forward as an Akiár only?  Terry couldn't do that.  What would happen for him?
    The points raised by Raká and Shíri are natural from their perspectives.  This is a fine mess.
    By the time Gar says anything to them, he's begun to create a little space between them and himself.  {Too many things in my head.  Need to clear them.  I want… to just fly.}

Kian has posed:
    «I—» Raká begins, then falters.
    Shíri doesn't exactly get between Raká and Gar.  Rather, she just turns slightly so that her wing interposes on every beat to maintain her hover, to give Gar a little space.
    «He has the instincts, Shíri.  Listen to him.  Gar can stay with us!»
    Shíri glares at him.  «And Teri can't.  You're being selfish, 'Ka.  Gar and Teri and Kían will decide where they need to be, not you.»
    Sounds like Gar has been adopted as someone's little brother.

Gar Logan has posed:
    Gar Logan crosses his arms, maintaining his own hover in a way that puts him apart from the pair, separate from them rather than being in the midst of them.
    {Kían told me about your culture.  About how you share.  Terry and I shared ourselves with him.  He shared himself with us.}
    There is a glance toward Shíri, but his eyes turn back toward Raká as the man speaks of instincts.  Perhaps Gar does, perhaps not.  Shíri is the one who sounds the wiser of the two right now.
    Or, maybe it's Gar.
    {Can you share, too?  Can you accept that what you want out of this might not be what Kían wants?  You don't even know how much he worried about what might happen if he ever came back.  All you care about is whether he's a god or not.  Well, I care about him for who he is, not what he is.  And I'm going back there.  To be with them.  To figure out what we're going to do.}
    Then he flies, and he doesn't just fly.  He pushes himself to fly as fast as an Akiár possibly can, given their physiology.  From his hovering position, he is off like a shot out of a cannon, leaving a few green feathers floating downward in his wake.

Kian has posed:
    «Yeah, he's a keeper,» Shíri muses as Gar rockets away.
    «You can not possibly want Kían to go away again,» Raká protests.
    Shíri glares at the cardinal-winged birdman.  «Don't be stupid, of course I don't want him to go.  But if he does, I want him to want to come back.  Don't scare him away from us, Raká.  Gar is right—Kían has found himself something there, whatever world it is.  He's different now.  Don't tell me you haven't sensed it.»