Time: Morning after suncrest
Always do hate caregivers but the one I met last week was a good along fella. It’s a strange place when the men and women who stretch us out, sew up our wounds n bend our bones, are also diggin in the dirt with the rest of us. This fella was a sidetime archaeologist. A thin-like fella with long scraggy hair, and despite digging he didn’t have the shakes. We struck up a talk, even tho I don’t much like discussing things with folks these days. He was different. Yes he was.
He told me he spent many years diggin in the dirt, workin with his hands. One moment sewin up a woman’s womb, the next diggin in a tunnel lookin for crap from before the fall. A lotta folks like that when you think on it. A lotta folks with many skills out there. Gotta have em. If you don’t-you get poked. As my slave master used to say, “Put a gladiator in a kitchen and see how good that idiot cooks!” True nuff. He said he only picked up diggen when his boy found a strange block of metal in a hill near the family home. Both his boys were dead now, so was his wife. Died like others do out here. Just cause.
This man was well on his way past 50 years, old in these days, n healthy enuff so what he said I took stock in more than others. And in my travels I don’t give stock too easy to random folks. But his ideas set me to thinkin.
Never did get his name, but he did give me an earfull. Its his belief, that the things now were way different then, that the creatures alive now were just fantasies in the minds of folks then. Things told to kids to get em to quite yappin and sit down for a bit I spose. He said that the work done by the leader of the Eagle split somethin in the world wide open n things just came flowin out. He thinks that man was here alone, that Malanthrax n Terrisletix, those two damn dragons always wrestlin n fightin and burnin n killin, weren’t nothin but a kids fantasy. He also said that back then Music Men traveled the world tellin tall tales, and didn’t worry bout no truths being involved or nuthun. That they just made up crap n sang it in rhyme n didn’t really live it. Tell that to a Music Man now and see if you get a knife in your ribs. It would be like tellin a Dwarf his beard stank or discussin civilities with an Energy Cannibal .
Some of what he said struck me true to the bone tho. Its funny that we never have found a motorized wagon that was big enuff to sit a troll, and no damn dwarf could drive em. Even the buildings seem made for us. It’s like a rock in my brain now, rolling all over my thoughts and smash’n them up. Most don’t care about the past, if you are gonna get down to the spit of it all. Why would they? They are busy tryin not to get a case of the Shakes while workin in the shining metal mines.
So the fella kept talkin and really went into a hoot. Like possessed he sorta paced and ranted n raved, I had to member most of what he said cause he talked like those kids who like the sweet licks when they do good deeds. He kept going on about the world tipping over, and how the land we are on now don’t make no sense. Said that the Westlands all the way to the Eastlands, with the Wildlands all centered up between em, made no real sense in the world and that’s why things are so damn harsh. Said that he thought the metal tubes stickin up out of the North Sea held men once, like pig guts hold in sausage. I ain’t got no idea bout that but it made me feel like I wanted to stretch my legs that’s the truth!
Went on for a couple hours. Splaining science stuff and things he seen in ol burnt books. Things he said that hinted that the City States weren’t no much different from the ol times. Slavery, strong leadin the strong, corruption. Seems like the old aint that much differnt than the new.
Not much but still differnt.
It set me to wonderin. Did magic exist then? The elves seem to wield it like a murderers shank, humans don’t seem to have no problem flingin a spell or two, n Dwarves can break it like a bone under hammer. So many damn questions it hurts my head n makes my teeth ache. I seen an Elf make it rain once but it also glassed a couple hundred feet of desert and almost killed us. The old sayin, “What goes in comes out again” sorta reminds me of that. Like a gun has recoil magic seems to have its own stiff kick when used.
That night, after the man collapsed done exhausted, I slipped out of the back n left. Always need to walk.
When Sally died I decided to take a walk. A walk I aint never stopped yet. I never did really have a reason. Only picked up the pages n started puttin letter to paper cause I had the skill n Sally would have slapped me upside the head if she knew I didn’t use it. But now I think I will walk a bit. Think I will ask around abit. Can’t hurt to figure out what people think and it gives me ‘scuses to spend some time with the soft-tales at them local pubs. One weakness I got is women. They ain’t no Sally but…either is she anymore.
So I guess I will keep walkin n keep talkin. See where it lands me. I got the rifle, and the sword, and as Sally said, I got too much hate to die. So walking it is.
Just have to decide on a direction to let my feet flow now.