“This is something of a new approach,” Ms. Lien replied, not completely answering the actual question. “For too long, we relied on the remnant of guardians left…but the depredations of age…” She sighed heavily. “We ignored the problem for a long time, hoping that a solution would present itself. It didn’t; therefore, we are, ah, trying creative problem solving.”
“Jazmyn,” and she gave the girl a fond, motherly glance, “is one such success in this venture.”
Said success beamed, bouncing a little in her seat, then catching herself and returning to something approaching dignity.
“My other girls are excellent gatekeepers, but gatekeepers are not, and cannot be, guardians. Jazmyn is, again, excellent, but she needs support. Other skillsets are necessary.”
She paused for a moment, hesitating, then said. “There have been other apprentices, yes, but the life of a guardian does not suit everyone, and thus they have moved on to other careers. This time, however…” A faint smile. “We’ve been somewhat more precise in our hunt. I believe that you all are closer to the ideal. Practice makes perfect, you know.”