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Stories from the Verse
Garden of Versers
Chapter 33: Kondor 142
Table of Contents
Previous chapter: Chapter 32: Hastings 145
At what point, Kondor wondered, do we stop being welcome guests, and start abusing the hospitality of our host? Their quintet hadnít really done anything but tell stories, eat meals, and sleep in comfortable rooms maintained by servants.
Of course, the stories were always heard with rapt attention, even when they had been told before. There were quite a few stories. After all, between them they had probably lived a couple centuries, but for all that the exciting parts could be reduced to a few weeks, maybe a few months, and could be told in a few hours. They couldnít tell stories forever.
There was an added attraction, though. Derekís flying practice seemed to gather spectators. Kondor imagined that you could charge admission to such a show, as you might to a gymnastics exhibition or an air force air show. People watched him and were entertained. So the group was entertaining in several ways. Still, even Ringling Brothers had to move to a new location after a few days. Somewhere someone said that fish and houseguests stink after three days. He should talk to Slade about leaving soon.
Of course, that raised the question of where they would go. For all the talking they had done, they had learned very little about the world. The twin rivers went quite far north watering fertile lands, some of it irrigated for agriculture and some used for herds of mostly sheep and goats. Once joined here near the city, the one stream continued south through a narrowing valley into another kingdom and ultimately a distant sea. West of the valley was the desert plateau they had crossed. East was wilderness, inhabited by tribes of raiders who had to be driven back periodically. There were, of course, other cities, other countries, in the world, but it was a long and reportedly arduous journey to reach most of them.
For the moment, then, they were here, and probably stuck here to some degree. Despite their talents, Kondor did not see the woman or the boy weathering any such journey. Either they were going to have to figure out how to travel, or they were going to have to find a way to make themselves useful.
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 #280: Versers Reveal. 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: