"Morning," The Leewit told Harry as she felt him wake up.
"Morning," Harry replied, snuggling back against her, enjoying the feel of being held and knowing someone cared about him.
The Leewit wasn't really comfortable with people knowing how much she cared for them, trying to hide it behind her gruff demeanor, but after what Harry had been through she knew he needed the reassurance, so she simply hugged him to her and didn't even try to disguise her thoughts, while idly going over the techniques she knew about setting things on fire and how they could be applied to his relatives.
Harry's stomach growled loudly in the quiet of the early morning.
"Time for breakfast," The Leewit said, reaching down to undo the belt tying them together.
"Huh," Harry said thoughtfully, looking up at the ceiling as he sensed something that hadn't been there before they'd gone to sleep.
"That's our two new neighbors," The Leewit told him, realizing he was relling the pair of Synths that had arrived a little while ago, waking her up with their thoughts.
"I can sense people?" Harry asked excitedly.
"The more used to working with klatha you are the greater your sensing range," The Leewit replied. "Right now you can rell people, maybe feel their emotions when they're close enough, later you'll be able to hear their thoughts. We'll want to get your shields up to snuff before you reach that point, because it can be a pain."
"Pain?" Harry asked, remembering the time Dudley had tripped him and he'd smacked his head on the curb. He'd had a headache for almost a week and Petunia had actually gotten worried they'd have to take him to a hospital before he'd woken up one morning and the pain was gone. He'd gotten stuck in his cupboard with no food for a weekend over that bit of unnaturalness.
"Not physically painful, though it can be confusing," The Leewit replied as she considered a new technique that would allow people to survive being burned, but did nothing for the pain involved. "What's a pain is learning what people think about."
"How is that a pain?" he asked, confused.
"Well, older folk think about a lot of things that are pretty gross and eventually you know you're going to think like that too, no matter how much you don't want to," she explained. "Also, even the kindest person has some really horrible thoughts because our brains are separated into two main parts and only one half is connected to our mouth and can speak. The other half seems to spend its time coming up with the most horrible thoughts and ideas possible just trying to get a response."
"Really?" Harry asked, surprised.
"Yeah," The Leewit said with a nod, "Any time you are standing next to a cliff or a rooftop it's the bit that gives you the urge to jump or when you are holding a baby and briefly wonder what would happen if you drop him. They're called intrusive thoughts and everyone has them, it's the part of your brain that can't speak, yelling in the dark. Anyway when you learn to hear thoughts you'll find that people are always thinking of the most horrible things they can do on some level."
"Like setting my relatives on fire," Harry said with a grin.
"Nah, they deserve that," The Leewit said firmly.
Harry laughed, amused at her determination that these weren't intrusive thoughts, since he knew she was such a wonderful person.
The Leewit blushed and hugged him, glad he was facing away from her, since they were still lying in bed.
"So we all have two brains," Harry said thoughtfully.
"Three," The Leewit corrected him. "You don't really hear anything from the third one as it's the lizard portion."
"Lizard?" he asked curiously.
"Yep, it handles all the automatic stuff like your heart beat and breathing," she explained. "The only time you really notice it is when the rest of your brain kinda shuts down."
"Ever had something happen and the world seems to slow down around you?" she asked.
"Like when someone jumps out of nowhere and swings a cricket bat at you?" Harry asked, a faint memory of bruised ribs and Dudley actually getting yelled at floating through his mind.
"Exactly like that," The Leewit agreed. "Times like that it takes over and since it's so small and runs so little it's a lot faster. It doesn't have to check your memory and decide what to do, because it can't, it simply responds. Well, it kinda checks your memory, but just the bits in your muscles and nerves, which are a lot faster."
"Like martial artists who practice movements until they are instinctive," Harry said with a grin, happy he understood what she was explaining.
"Exactly," she agreed. "Instincts and reflexes but no real thought so it's harder to hear. There's probably a pattern to listen in to it, but I don't know it."
"If it runs that fast then listening to it probably wouldn't be that useful cause as soon as you heard it, it'd already have done it," he decided.
"Pretty much," she agreed. "Now, enough dawdling, let's get some food in you."
"Okay," Harry agreed, reluctantly getting up, because he was really hungry.
"I've been listening to their thoughts," The Leewit said as she dug in her packs for the leftover stew, "and they aren't hostile, they want to take us somewhere safe since out here isn't and they're curious about who we are, because there aren't a whole lot of kids wandering around without adults and we talk, dress, and act different than an wastelander they know of, not to mention seeing us practice through those cyborg crows of theirs."
"Those crows are awesome," Harry said, "they're like robots… but also animals."
"Yeah, never seen anything like that before," The Leewit said as she rolled threads of klatha together to heat up the stew, being careful not to explode anything.
"Thank you," Harry said, accepting a bowl of stew and a cup of tea before quickly digging in.
"I figure we'll let them discover us practicing on the roof and they can talk us into going to their place," The Leewit said in between bites of stew.
"Do you think they'll know what happened up here? The war I mean," he explained, before letting out a large burp. "Excuse me."
"You're excused," The Leewit replied automatically. "They probably have records of what happened if they don't teach it in school."
"Good, cause I'm really curious," Harry said. "I know that war probably happened about a century after my time cause of the calendar, but I still want to know what went wrong."
"Governments have wars," The Leewit replied with a shrug, "it's why we don't have one on Karres."
"No government?" he asked, surprised. "How does that work?"
"People get together and do what they think needs doing," The Leewit replied. "We're pretty self sufficient."
"Hard to start a war if you need everyone to agree," Harry realized.
"Pretty much," She said. "If Karres goes to war, which it has exactly once, there has to be a clumping good reason for it. Governments… not so much."
"They always seemed to have a good reason or at least claimed to," Harry said, thinking of History Class with Miss Hoover and how she'd pointed out the number of times what the government had told their people wasn't the whole truth of was even flat out lies at times, "but then a lot of it falls apart when you get a good look at it."
"Well, it's been long enough they might know why it happened," Harry decided. "I'll settle for knowing what happened if all they've got is propaganda like those old war posters."
"They probably have that," The Leewit agreed. "Well, let's go make some noise to attract them," she said with a grin that made Harry giggle.
B2-50 'Sally' tilted her head to the side. "Did I just hear an explosion?"
B2-51 'Linda' nodded. "It's what I heard. I guess the kids decided to start practicing early."
"Do we know what they're doing?" Sally asked thoughtfully. "I know Dr. Holdren said they appeared to be practicing psychokinesis, but they could be using weapons or tools that weren't obvious."
"Well that's what we're here to find out," Linda said cheerfully. "Whatever it is, if there is anything, we'll just bring to the Institute with us."
Sally nodded and double checked her supplies. "Alright, let's go."
"Good explosion on that one," The Leewit said, genuinely impressed with the size of the fireball Harry had created, knowing he didn't put nearly as much effort into it as she'd have to, to get the same effect.
They ignored the pair of crows sitting above the door to the stairs as they both raised a chunk of dirt, doing their best to keep the chunks of dirt level with each other before grinning and adding a second thread causing them to explode almost simultaneously.
"You're getting a lot better at this," The Leewit said proudly.
"Really?" Harry asked, surprised. "But it didn't explode until a second after yours."
"Yeah, but you levitated it with mine without flinging it into space," she pointed out.
"I did!" Harry realized and looked around for a suitable target, spying the remains of a clay pot and tagging it with a thread. At a gesture it rose slowly in the air and then did a figure eight, perfectly under his control. "I did it!"
"Yep, by concentrating on the other stuff you relaxed and got a feel for it," The Leewit said.
Harry grinned and gestured, sending the fragment of pot supersonic, and probably into orbit, with a laugh.
The Leewit laughed as the door opened behind her and pretended to be surprised when the two young women stepped out.
"Hi!" Linda said brightly. "We're here to rescue you!"
Sally face palmed. This was not how things were supposed to go.
"Candy?" Linda offered, holding out a small plastic bag.
"Sure," The Leewit said, hiding her amusement at Sally's annoyance with her twin and accepting the bag to share with harry. "So, what are you saving us from?"
"Radiation, pollution, Rad Roaches, Deathclaws, Rad Scorpions, raiders… you know, the usual stuff found on the surface," Linda listed off.
"Sounds good to me," The Leewit said cheerfully. "Harry?"
"Sounds good to me too," he agreed before eating a piece of rock candy, playing along since it amused Leewit so much.
"How about some introductions?" Sally said, trying to get back on script. "I'm Sally and this is my younger sister Linda."
"I'm The Leewit and this is my… Harry," The Leewit finally said with a shrug, not able to come up with an appropriate term for their relationship. "He's mine," she added, just to make sure there were no misunderstandings.
Harry simply beamed, happy that he was wanted.
"Is Leewit a title?" Sally asked curiously.
"The Leewit," the young witch corrected her. "I was named after a young witch who saved a lot of people in the hopes I would take after her." She smirked and Harry could feel her amusement.
"So her name was The Leewit which sounds like a title and a good one at that," Linda decided.
"Yes," The Leewit agreed.
"Well it's very nice to meet you The Leewit," Sally said. "How were you exploding things, if you don't mind me asking?"
"Magic," The Leewit replied, waving a hand, causing a dirt clod to rise up behind her, flying out over the street before it exploded.
"Looks more like psychic powers," Sally felt the need to point out.
"It's two names for the same thing," The Leewit told her. "Legends have sprung up about each name, but they are simply two groups talking about the same thing in their language."
"That makes sense," Linda said thoughtfully. "The stories about them would differ because each group looked at it differently."
"Exactly," The Leewit replied, "and since they had different backgrounds the stories and ideas that spring up reflected that as they developed until they were two seemingly separate subjects."
"You are going to be really popular at the institute," Sally said, "they prize intelligence."
"You guys ready to go?" Linda asked, eager to finish their mission and get the children to safety.
"Yeah, but you two aren't," The Leewit replied.
"You guys could use a nap," Harry added, sensing where Leewit's thoughts were going. 'or should it be The Leewit?' he thought to himself.
'Leewit is fine, but only for you,' she sent to him. "Get a couple of hours sleep so you're well rested before we head out into danger," the young witch said.
"You can use our bed, it's probably more comfortable than the one in the apartment you're using," Harry offered.
"That's a good idea," Linda agreed before looking to Sally to see what she thought.
"I'd rather be at my best," Sally admitted. "You never know what you'll run into out there."
"We can work on your lessons while they sleep," The Leewit told Harry.
"Lessons?" Sally asked curiously.
"Basic school work," The Leewit replied with a shrug.
"That's good to hear," Sally said with approval, "education is vital."
"Ain't that the truth," The Leewit said as they headed inside, one of the crows leaping onto Sally's shoulder.
After a brief stop at the apartment Sally and Linda had used, to collect their things, they arrived at the apartment the two young magic users were using.
"Wow, this place is spotless," Linda said, shocked at its condition as compared to all the other ones they'd looked at.
"Magic makes household chores easy," The Leewit said modestly, before waving the two into the bedroom. "Get some sleep, I'll wake you at noon, the heat should make most of the predators sluggish."
"It does," Sally agreed as they dropped their bags and retreated to the bedroom to sleep, the crow leaping off Sally's shoulder to settle on the back of a chair.
"So what are we working on today?" Harry asked eagerly.
The Leewit dug out their tablets. "Vocabulary of Imperial Universum and then some basic orbital mechanics."
"I've never taken orbital mechanics," Harry said, worried about disappointing her.
"It's basically a bunch of cartoons about what can go wrong if you screw up your calculations," she answered him, "You won't need to learn to calculate reentry and stable orbits for years, they just want to make sure we understand how serious it is well in advance."
"Oh," Harry said, relaxing.
"The Kerbal Space Series is hilarious, you'll love it," she assured him.
Justin leaned forward to get a better look at the monitor. Were they serious or had they just stumbled on a couple of kids from an unknown Hubologist group?
Typing By: Abyssal Angel
TN: KSP as an educational cartoon tickles my funny bone in an extreme way. XD