Atla jumped back from the Gateway as it snapped open, an oval puddle of sky suddenly replacing the paving just in front of him. The movement drew puzzled looks from Pevan and Chag, and he felt heat rush into his cheeks. It was hard not to feel like an idiot child in front of Pevan's frown. Probably all northern Gifted were that intense.
She waved him towards the Gate, and he stumbled, almost complying on reflex. His blush got so hot that it sent shivers crawling through him, but he made himself face her. "I... uh, I don't..."
"You've never used a Gate before?" She rolled her eyes, and Atla's spirit sank into the pit of his guts.
"I have, but, uh, not for a while." They were both glaring at him. If anything, Van Raighan seemed more disappointed than Pevan. The thief had recovered disconcertingly quickly since they'd found him, semi-conscious in the basement of a ruin by the shorefront, though he still looked haggard and gnomish. Atla cringed. "I'm sorry."
"Not your fault, kiddo." Pevan punched Chag on the arm, not hard enough for the little man to object. To him, she said, "Wipe that look off your face. Have you ever worked with a Guide before? Or a Clearseer, for that matter?"