Thayde's eyes caught on a specific name as he looked at the roster for apprentices who would be working chores in the infirmary that sevenday. Kenna. He'd never thought much of her until that day on the dock with Naton, before Naton had been sent to the Sunstone territory.
"Master Thayde, hold up a moment," Naton called as he jogged down the dock to catch up with his colleague.
Thayde paused, his swimming fins dangling from his left hand as he turned, recognizing the voice immediately, "Naton. What's up?"
"Could you spare a few minutes to talk about one of the apprentices? Apprentice Kenna, come from Coral Bay. Kind of tall, one eye looks a different color than the other." Naton was aware that Thayde had several students on top of his regular duties, so any information to jog a memory might help.
Fortunately Thayde was good with names and faces. "I know the girl, came here with her twin brother."
Naton nodded. "Exactly. That's the girl. Anyway, she's getting close to walking the tables soon, and she has expressed an interest in specializing in my area. Problem is, I don't think she's cut out for it."
"Why not?" Thayde asked curiously. He only saw Kenna when the apprentices came for their classes and chores in the dolphin infirmary.
"Well, for one, she's not a strong swimmer. She's just barely average above water, and below average under it." Which meant both water rescue and underwater salvage would be a challenge for her.
Thayde wondered how she had made senior apprentice if she struggled with swimming. **That's a basic requirement,** he thought. "She could be encouraged not to specialize, just to continue with general dolphineer education, and should a strength develop for her along the way, then she could take that up."
"Well, it's not just the swimming she lacks. She timid. She second guesses. And she just doesn't have the right instincts, even for where to start looking." She was fine for a general dolphineer, that was true, but Naton saw other qualities in the girl that made him think Thayde was the one to talk to. "But she's kind and gentle. The dolphins feel comfortable around her. It's the dolphins she loves, not the excitement."
"Being kind and gentle isn't enough to specialize in dolphin healing. There can be no second guessing when it comes to treatment and their well being. Not to mention, as one progresses in dolphin healing there is a lot of swimming and physical therapy involved. Perhaps meteorology would be a better field for her, if you feel she must specialize." Thayde was extremely picky about the journeymen and apprentices that worked under him in the infirmary. If the girl wanted to come and comfort dolphins, that was fine, but not something that would allow her to specialize.
Naton resisted the urge to roll his eyes. Paddling around in calm water was a far cry from fighting waves at a high speed or diving deep for extended periods of time. "Look, you know the girl I'm talking about, right? What potential do you see in her?"
Thayde felt a spark of annoyance, a rare feeling for the easy-going dolphineer. What was up with Naton? He normally wasn't so pushy. "I know very well who we are talking about and I have told you my advice. Either encourage her to _not_ specialize," it wasn't as if specialization was required, "or see if she has strengths that lie elsewhere in the craft. She's kind and sweet and all of that but that doesn't make her a healer. You don't even have to be the one to tell her she isn't cut out for Rescue and Salvage, have the Master of Apprentices do it, it is his job to see them into journeymanship." Apparently the healer specialization was just suppose to take in the Rescue and Salvage rejects?
"Who do you think sent me, Thayde? He asked me to check around and see what the other teachers think. I came to you first because I think she'd be a good fit as a healer. I figured if she would have any talent in it, you would know." Shards was _everyone_ in a bad mood these days? It seemed ever since the fire everyone was on edge. Even his own Jyls, though for very different and much deeper reasons. "So what do you think? Have you seen potential in her, or should I go talk to someone else?"
**Well you could have said Master Ievas sent you in the first place.** Thayde hedged in his mind. "No, I don't see her specializing as a healer, as I've said."
Naton crossed his arms over his chest and looked at the dock with a lop-sided frown. He had really hoped she'd had shown some promise. "Shards, that's unlucky. The girl just wants to help people."
"Just being a dolphineer is a help, if you need an example to give her, Hallmaster Endarin doesn't have a specialty. Granted, that is _if_ a dolphin partners up with her." Sometimes it didn't happen.
"I don't have a dolphin partner," Naton reminded his fellow Master. True, he did have a partner once, but it certainly wasn't a requirement.
"I know, but you did." Thayde pointed out. "Anyway, Ada is waiting for me," a sleek, grey nose poked out of the water at the mention of her name. "Good luck with Kenna." He said over his shoulder.
Last updated on the November 2nd 2017