Tuesday, August 26, 2014

6 What to Want

            “Are you unhappy here, Ch’loi?” Chofa asked after the morning meeting had broke up and the counselors had all gone their separate ways.  She would normally go to her lessons, learning how to read and write and behave in a completely new society but she had lingered and he sensed she wished to speak with him alone.  She sat next to him on his divan, her smallness all the more pronounced by her posture, as if she were trying to fold herself even smaller.  He poured them each a fresh cup of coffee, adding a straw for hers; she was so nearly healed but still struggled with swallowing.  She examined the dark fluid in her fragile cup for a long time before answering.  He was comfortable with the silence.
            “One does not know ‘happy’.  One has heard the word but one cannot smell it.  It makes no fire.” 
            “It makes no fire,” he repeated.  He had learned by now what she meant.  “What is making fire for you?  Where do you burn, Ch’loi?” 
            “One is not useful.  One only takes.  One has no purpose.”
            “A child takes, does a child have no purpose?”
            “A child’s purpose is to grow, one is already in the adult phase.”
            “How did you know your purpose before?”
            “One has always been ruled by need.  The need to obey the Primary.  The need to harvest.  The need to feed the kin.  The need to defend the kin.  Then the Firemaker came and one needed to know where the fire came from, what the fire meant.  This new need was stronger than former needs; it chose a new purpose for one.  Then the kin rejected one and one needed kin.    The Firemaker fed one and made one kin to the Firemaker.  The Firemaker gave one a purpose and one obeyed the Firemaker.  One brought the Firemaker and one to this kin-home.  Now the Primary feeds one, the Primary has made one kin of the Primary.  The Primary defends one.  Now one has no needs but one, a purpose.”
            “You’re purpose is to heal.”
            “The procedures are complete.  One is nearly healed and utilizable again.”
            “You have your lessons…”
            “Learning is necessary, learning is vital, but learning without knowing one’s purpose is inefficient.  One does not know what is best to learn, what will be useful.”
            “Are you asking me for a reason for living or just a job?”
            “Are these not the same thing?”
            Chofa rubbed his eyes.  “I haven’t had enough coffee for this conversation.”
            “May one pour the Primary more?”
            “No, that’s not what I… yes, yes you can!  There, I’ve given you a purpose.” 
            She poured him a fresh cup, fixed it as he liked and handed it back to him.  “The Primary is joking.”
            “Yes he is.  He is stalling because he feels ill equipped to decide your fate, daughter.”
            “Is this not the purpose of the Primary?”
            “It is, but I am actually the Secondary.  Yahweh is the Primary.”
            “One studies the Firemaker’s book and is learning much but one still has this need.  How does the Primary..”
            “Secondary,” Chofa corrected.
            “How does the Secondary..”
            “I’d prefer Father.”
            “How does the Secondary determine the Yahweh’s will in such cases?”
            Chofa set down his coffee and motioned for her to do so.  He enveloped her hands in his great paws and said, “We ask Him.”

Monday, August 25, 2014

Vacation update

i'm on vacation but never fear, that means i have time to work on work that isn't work to me and no one acts like i should be doing something more constructive.  Well, no one but my son who thinks if i'm not throwing, bouncing, splashing, bumping or setting a ball with him then i'm doing nothing.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

What Ch'loi wants

            “What is it you desire?” Kurga asked.
            “Pardon?” Ch’loi blinked.
            “Did I startle you?  I’m sorry, milady, I didn’t know how deep in your own thoughts you were.  But we are nearly to the Last Caravanserai and I only wish to know…what now?”
            “A topic I’m rather interested in myself,” Captain Rayjay said. 
            “As am I,” Amisbhake added.
            “You?” Kurga exclaimed, “I thought you were her counselor?”
            “I cannot counsel where my counsel is not asked for.”
            “Tell that to my mother.  Well then, it would seem we are all in the same boat.”
            “Did you really mean to say that?”
            “Say what?”
            “Never mind.”  Amisbhake turned to the small girl staring at the deck of the skiff.  “Child, the time has come.”
            She looked at him then turned to Kurga, “One would like to purchase slaves.”
            “Ah,” he smiled, “I see.  I could have guessed.  And what kind of slaves should I buy for you, children I suppose?”
            She slashed the air with one hand.  “Age is irrelevant.”
            “Oh.  Uh.   Well then, um, do you prefer males or females or..?”
            “Also unimportant.”
            “Well then…ah… could you give me something to go on?  What qualities are important?”
            She focused on the deck again and was silent a long time before she spoke.  When at last she looked at him, he shivered, “One only needs them to be dying.  Preferably of fever.”