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Stories from the Verse
Chapter 142: Kondor 135
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Previous chapter: Chapter 141: Brown 158
The winds which had carried the sand to the walls of the dome seemed to change their minds and carry it all away again before the others awoke. Kondor was tired from having stood all day, and wished he did not have to start walking across the sand, when Slade interrupted his fogged thoughts.
“Well, I’ve never seen that before. Have you?”
“Seen what?” Kondor responded.
“Oh, you missed it?” Slade didn’t wait for a reply. “A moment ago that was empty sand, and abruptly all that stuff appeared. I’d say a verser just arrived, and this is his luggage.”
Kondor looked over at the collection of objects that had appeared on the sand, and had to agree that it had the look of a verser arriving. In fact--“Doesn’t that bicycle look terribly familiar?”
“Oh, the one with the baskets?” Slade answered, as if there were another somewhere in the batch--but then, the baskets were certainly a point. “You don’t suppose--?”
“Who else could it be?”
“So, what do we do?”
Kondor closed his eyes and relaxed. “Well, I feel him out there, and let’s face it, unless there’s something stopping him, he’s probably headed this way. After all, what’s the first thing you do when you arrive in a new universe?”
“I stop and try to feel where my equipment is--oh, and check on Shella, but she’s always been close at hand up to now.”
At this moment Zeke came over. “What’s happening?” he asked.
Kondor realized that he and Slade were looking at each other, so he replied.
“Remember us talking about a kid named Derek?”
“Yeah, computer genius who could turn into a fairy?”
“Sprite,” Slade corrected.
“What about him?”
“That looks like his stuff. We think he’s here.”
“No kidding? So you didn’t make him up? Is that girl coming, too?”
Slade laughed. “Lauren? I have no idea. That would be interesting, all of us together.”
“Odds are against it,” Kondor said. “But then, they were against the two of us coming together again so soon, and more against Derek joining us, so I guess anything really is possible.”
“Including magic?” Slade challenged.
“Oh--no, not magic.”
“Just checking.” Slade smiled. “So, we wait?”
“At least tonight and tomorrow. After that we’ll have to decide.”
“O.K.,” he called, “everybody get comfortable. We’re going to give Derek a day to reach us.”
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with twenty other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #269: Versers Arrive. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: