About Chapter 11: During the communion scene I have been told that things get a little confusing and a little hard to track. That was intentional. That was a joining of two minds. Not only that; you have a 14 year old and a 7 year old sharing memories with the 7 year old having touched memories of another 7 year old. I had it intentionally confusion as the deep bond was unstable.

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Chapter #13: Building Defenses

 

Greeley Colorado

July 25th, 2020-CE

 

Scarlet shook her head. She didn’t know the correct words to say to her charge to get him to understand what she was talking about, “No, no, no! You can’t just block with barriers and walls in your mind. If you are to block an attack brought on by surprise then you need to have something different. You can’t maintain those walls and barriers all the time. If someone wanted to get into your mind and you didn’t have those walls up at that point, you will be wide open! Another telepath could read you like a book. The only difference between you and a normal at that point is you would detect them in your mind.”

Lone Wolfe shrugged, his gold eyes conveyed his confusion to his mentor, “If I would feel them in my mind then why would I need to worry about maintaining walls and barriers? I could just bring them up when I feel someone come in.”

Scarlet shook her head, “You are assuming that you will feel them before they get to your secrets and you would be able to kick them out. Your mind is your own domain but you cannot protect it with walls and still function normally as a human the rest of the time.”

Lone Wolfe glanced at her with a funny look, “I don’t see what the problem really is. Why would another telepath attack me or probe my thoughts without my permission?”

Scarlet shrugged, “Some do. That is why it is important to protect yourself from them.” The room air conditioner in her living room stopped at that point. She glanced around and saw that the power had gone out again. “Just great! The power went out again!”

“It’s been a hot summer,” Lone Wolfe stated, “maybe everyone is running their AC’s and the grid just can’t handle it anymore.”

She sighed, “Two years away from having a driver’s license. This couldn’t have waited for another couple of years?”

He cocked his head in confusion, “I don’t see why that would make a difference.”

“Because we could hop in the car and have AC,” Scarlet noted, “Maybe even go somewhere like Estes Park or Carter lake where it is cooler.”

“But you can’t train me and drive at the same time,” Lone Wolfe stated in response.

She nodded, “You are right, we would just talk and figure out a place to go.”

Lone Wolfe’s face lit up, “We could go a public pool. Is there one close by?”

Scarlet shook her head, “Nearest one is about two miles away and it isn’t open yet.”

“Well, we could walk there,” Lone Wolfe suggested, “I am sure you can walk and train me at the same time.”

“Sure, did you happen to bring swimming trunks with you?” Scarlet questioned in response.

Lone Wolfe shook his head, “No, I only just thought about this.”

“Well your house isn’t too far from mine,” Scarlet stated, “wait here while I get my swimsuit on and clothes thrown over it and we can go to your house. I will also need to call your mom and make sure it is okay that we go.”

Lone Wolfe nodded. Scarlet rose and disappeared. He waited there with nothing to do for several minutes. He wondered how long it would take for her to change and come back out. She also wondered if she would be able to get ahold of his mother. When ten minutes passed by, he projected, “Are we going? What is taking so long?”

“It won’t be long. I called your mom and she is okay. She’d rather you be swimming than sitting in the house as the heat rises. I just have to find some sunblock and…” Her projection trailed off at that point.

“What else do you need to find?” Lone Wolfe questioned in response.

“Nothing. This will do, I guess,” He thought he could hear her sigh from where she disappeared to.

After a few minutes of waiting, she appeared in the Living room with a backpack and a bottle of sunblock in her hand, she tossed it in her back pack. Her clothes were the same set of black clothes and fishnet over clothing that she usually wore. He didn’t see anything different but the slight flush on her face meant that something was wrong. He missed it as he still wasn’t used to reading people’s sub vocal expressions. He smiled and said, “Are we ready?” He asked.

She nodded and sighed, “Yeah, let’s go.”

They strolled out of her house and headed for his house. With the speed he walked, it didn’t take them that long to get there. He unlocked the door and made his way into the house. He left the door open for her to follow. She stopped in the living room, “I will wait here for you while you find your trunks and change. Remember to grab a towel and a backpack. Another change of clothes might help too.”

Lone Wolfe nodded and ran into his room. He grabbed an empty backpack and shoved a change of clothes into it. He fished through his dresser and found a pair of red swimming trunks. He pulled off his shorts and underwear and pulled it on and tied it tight. He ran out with the backpack and grabbed a towel from the bathroom on the way back to the Living room. He smiled and said, “Okay, I’m ready.”

She nodded, “I can see that. Let’s get started. Don’t forget to lock the door.”

They marched out of the house and started their walk toward the public swimming pool. As they went, Scarlet fished out the sunblock from her back and handed it to Lone Wolfe, “Lather yourself up with this while we walk. You don’t want to get sunburned.”

“Don’t you need to as well?” Lone Wolfe questioned in response.

She shook her head, “I already did most of me. I will need your help with my back once we get there. I will help with your back as well.”

“Do you have your swimsuit on underneath your shirt?” Lone Wolfe asked, “I can do your back now.”

“Absolutely not!” Scarlet hissed, “I am not taking my clothes off before we get to the pool.”

“It’s hot out here and you are wearing a lot of black. If you have your swimsuit on then you would be a lot cooler with at least the shirt off,” Lone Wolfe suggested.

She shook her head again, “I have my swimsuit on but I will not take my clothes on before we get to the pool. End of that discussion. Now put on your sunblock before I do it for you and make you look like a kid on this street.”

“But I am a kid,” Lone Wolfe replied.

“Keep it up, smart Alek,” Scarlet spat.

Lone Wolfe squirted on sunblock and covered his arms and face as they walked. They had to stop a couple of times as he covered his legs with it. After that, he handed the sunblock back and they kept walking. They got close to his school when he asked, “Are we going to continue my training until we get there?”

Scarlet nodded, “Yes, defend yourself, I am going to probe your mind.”

Instantly, Lone Wolfe threw up a mental wall to block her probes. She shook her head, and said, “I don’t think you were listening to me. If you are prepared for an attack you can throw up a wall but if you aren’t then you are going to be defenseless. You will need something else to defend yourself with.”

“That’s the part I don’t understand,” Lone Wolfe commented in response, “You want me to use something else but you haven’t given me a description or a word as to what it is supposed to be yet. The only thing I know how to do is throw up barriers to keep you from coming in.”

Scarlet nodded, “You are right. I haven’t been very good at describing that to you.”

“Maybe we can communion and that will show me what you are trying to get me to do?” Lone Wolfe suggested.

“No, none of that,” Scarlet stated, “Your mom will kill me if we try that again. Also, I will not do that out in the open.” His suggestion did give her an idea, “There is something else we can do. I have been trying to describe it to you the entire time but I can show you. Try to probe me.”

“Isn’t the problem that I am prepared for the probe in the first place?” Lone Wolfe questioned in response, “If I probe you and you know about it, won’t you just throw up a wall?”

Scarlet shook her head, “Not if I want to show you something. Go somewhere, anywhere. You will see what I have for a first line defense.”

Lone Wolfe concentrated on probing her mind as they continued to walk. He was unsure of what he was doing as he had not attempted to probe someone’s mind before. At least he hadn’t tried to do it on purpose. He did what seemed to come naturally to him, he sought out her voice amongst the numerous voices he could hear and then attempted to dig deeper into her mind. Her thoughts became clear as crystal for a moment and as he tried to dig into her memories, the ones that were familiar to him from their communion, something kicked him out. It was lightning quick and it didn’t feel like Scarlet at all.

He glanced at her and asked, “What was that?”

“That was what I was telling you about,” Scarlet stated, “A different defense than a wall and it doesn’t require your attention.”

“It didn’t feel like you, what was it?” Lone Wolfe asked as they continued to walk.

“You could call it a watchdog I guess,” Scarlet noted, “A stray thought that you can give a life of its own. After it has a life of its own, it protects its home.”

“Can you have only one?” Lone Wolfe questioned.

Scarlet shook her head, “I have many of them but you will need to devote some attention to them at first so start off with one and start creating more as you can leave them on their own.”

“Do all of them roam your mind or do they sit in different spots?” Lone Wolfe asked after a moment of thought.

“They usually sit where you put them, or are in charge of certain areas. When you create your first one, you will want to set it in your memories, it will protect them. You must have attempted to probe my memories if you were kicked out so fast,” Scarlet noted in response, “If you chose other things I would have felt it before you got kicked out. My oldest ones are the strongest ones and they protect my memories.”

He nodded as they approached the parking lot to the library. Behind the library was one of the public pools. This one was one of the closest ones to them. He glanced up to her and said, “You should teach me how to make one as we swim.”

“It is pretty simple,” She said, “Think of something important to you and the word protection and let it run around in your head like a song that gets stuck. After a while it will start to take on a life of its own and start to guard that area. So, choose a memory that is important to you and think of protecting it and keep it active in your thoughts.”

Lone Wolfe nodded as they got in line. The line was starting to get long already considering that this was far from the first power outage in the month. She sighed and waited for the line to move. A short while later the line started to move. In the power outage, most of the people waiting in line did not have cash and couldn’t be processed so they had to leave and come back with cash later.

Considering that both of them were minors, Scarlet didn’t have the problem with carrying plastic instead of cash. She had cash on her. Lone Wolfe’s mother would pay her back later so she wasn’t so concerned with that. The line moved forward at a quick pace but she was surprised with how many people, how many adults, were carrying cash. This must have been far from the first time they had to go through this as well. Even with all of the people leaving to either get cash or find somewhere else to cool off, it would be busy.

It took them about fifteen minutes to get in. Lone Wolfe took off his shirt and stuffed his backpack, minus towel, in the locker and locked it shut. He then waited in the hallway between changing rooms for Scarlet. In a few minutes, she came out holding a bottle of sunblock. He didn’t recognize her at first as she wasn’t wearing black. It was her hair and face, as well as the familiar bottle of sunblock that she carried that clued him in. The hot pink bikini was something he didn’t expect, “Scarlet?” He muttered.

She flushed, “yeah?”

“Pink?” Lone Wolfe questioned, “I thought you would have had something black? You always wear black.”

“This is all I could find,” She sighed in response.

“But…Pink?” Lone Wolfe asked in response.

“Do you want to swim or not?” Scarlet questioned sternly.

Lone Wolfe nodded. She tossed him the bottle and said, “Lather yourself up with what you can then pass it back to me and I will get your back. After that you can get my back and we can go swimming. I’m a ginger so I will burn if I don’t go out there protected.”

“You don’t look like a root to me,” Lone Wolfe stated.

Scarlet chuckled, “Don’t lose that sense of humor. You will need it someday. Ginger is another term for a red head. I have a tendency to burn if I go out without sunblock.”

Lone Wolfe nodded and squirted some of the white substance from the bottle over himself and rubbed it on all parts he could reach. She was surprised that he could actually reach most of his body including most of his back without any assistance. Afterwards he glanced over to her and squirted some more sunblock into his hand, “If you turn around and kneel, I can put it on you now.”

She nodded and bent down and turned around. He lathered up her back and rubbed it in. As he did, she made the comment, “I know a lot of high school boys who would love to be in your position right now.”

“Why?” Lone Wolfe asked, confused.

She smirked and shook her head, “Nothing. You will figure it out in a few years.”

Lone Wolfe shrugged and handed her the bottle of sunblock. They walked out to the swimming area where they found a place to set their towels then proceeded to the swimming pool. They had more fun at the pool than they would have retreating to the basement of her house. They reapplied the sunblock during the adult swim moments and swam around until the pool closed. At that point, the power had been restored to the city. They were able to walk home and cool off in an air-conditioned house.

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