“You heard.” It wasn’t a question.
Makena stood by Ceryane’s horse, brushing it down. When I had opened the door and found her gone, I figured she must have returned to the stables. Without looking at me, she nodded.
“Well,” I said, “this is the moment we’ve been training for these past few months.”
She shook her head. “I don’t think I’m ready, Jhyssa,” she whispered.
“Makena,” I sighed, “you equal me with bow and sword.” I reached out and touched her hair, smoothing it down. My hand came to rest upon her shoulder. “You are a Warrior of the Soul.”
She rolled her eyes. “You know I believe that. But there’s something missing ... something more I’ve got to learn.” She hurried on before I could object. “You taught me to aim a bow with my heart, to swing a sword with my soul -- I know the moves but not the reasons. I can’t fight until I learn for myself why I fight.”
I didn’t say anything. There was nothing to say -- I knew she was right. She had to find that within her which allowed her to strike true. “But sometimes,” I said gently, “a Warrior will learn that only when tested in battle.”
She turned to me. “That’s not my way. I have to figure out why I choose the Warrior’s path before I can follow it fully.”
“I thought you said you wanted to fight beside me.”
“I do -- I will, eventually.” She shook her head again. “I’m sorry, Jhyssa. I thought you would understand.”
I guess I did. She had to find the Warrior within before she could fully become a Warrior to the world. She had to make the way of the Warrior her way.