Monday, October 21, 2019

Page 1892

She hadn’t forgotten Germal’s warning to her regarding the “honey trap” nature of the Library of Erudition, but according to Gohvis, as long as she followed the Library’s rules, she would be fine. And she was being careful.

But there were other things to do besides read books all day. There was an impressive kitchen on the first floor where a few of Gohvis’ followers had offered to instruct her in the culinary arts. Which was actually quite tempting, honestly. She had no idea how in the world these people managed to keep their food stores so well-stocked, but the skills of the chefs here were undeniable. Virtually every meal she’d had in this place had been an utter delight, and just thinking about next one was beginning to make her mouth water.

Aside from learning to cook, however, there was also the underground training facility where she’d seen people honing various combat abilities. She had yet to even ask if she was allowed to partake in any combat training, but she did plan to give it a go, eventually.

There was also a game room on the second floor, though she hadn’t actually seen anyone using it yet. She might’ve liked to play someone in chess or pool or even foosball, but without any opponents, that didn’t seem like it was going to happen. Maybe she just hadn’t visited that room at the right time of day yet, but she wasn’t getting her hopes up. These people belonged to the Dozer-half of Abolish, after all. She was frankly amazed that this place even had a game room.

All-in-all, this was a strange manner of captivity. So far, she and Chergoa had been free to roam around the building as they pleased, talk to whomever they desired, and seemingly do whatever they wanted.

Except leave, of course. Not that there was any chance of that, what with the Dáinnbolg raging endlessly beyond the Library’s walls.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Page 1891 -- CXCVI.

Chapter One Hundred Ninety-Six: ‘Take root, seedling, and germinate...’
Click to display entire chapter at once -- (mobile link)

Emiliana Elroy sighed as she realized that she had stopped paying attention to what she was reading again. Her lack of sleep was really starting to get to her, it seemed, and it certainly didn’t help that her chosen reading material for the evening was so damn confusing.

The Many Mysteries of Mutation, by Agam Elroy.

Technically, she had read this thing twice already, but even now, she still wasn’t sure that she actually understood any of it. The subject matter seemed complicated enough on its own, but the archaic prose only made it more difficult. And strangely enough, there was quite a bit of poetry in it, too.

That last part might’ve been more discouraging to her, but the book’s normal writing was so incomprehensible to her that she kind of preferred the parts with poetry. She could at least occasionally feel like she understood what the poems were trying to say.

Desires held, promises kept.
The mind, the labyrinthine self, an unconscious adjudicator.
Therein is fulfillment met.

Desires held, promises broken.
The mind, the saboteur of god, a righteous terror.
Therein is misery spoken.
Aimless heart, promises unthought.
The mind, the ceaseless turner, a motivating factor.
Therein is a world of rot.
She’d been staring at this particular passage for the better part of an hour now, feeling somehow stupider with each passing minute. She could’ve sworn that it made sense to her the first time she read it, but the more she tried to deepen her understanding, the less clear it seemed to become.

She set the book down and rubbed her eyes. Maybe she needed a break. She’d been doing nothing but reading lately. It just seemed like the most useful way to spend her time, given the circumstances.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Page 1890

Huh. Suddenly, Hector felt a little bad for him. Not enough to ease up, though. If Amelia Carthrace was going to run some gigantic, nation-rescuing bank for him, then he needed to know more about her.

Lionel took another moment to gather his thoughts. “Well... if I had to put my misgivings with her into words... then I would have to point to her propensity to say one thing and then do another.”

Hmm. That was actually a pretty serious accusation, Hector felt. It spoke of untrustworthiness. He was going to need a hell of a lot more detail, though. “Is there a specific incident that you’re referring to?” he asked.

“More than one, to be sure,” said Lionel, “but off the top of my head, there was the incident in which she promised my sister a position in her company, only to turn around and give the job to someone else.”

Hmm.

“And there was the time,” Lionel continued, “when she claimed to be supportive of a marriage between my nephew and the daughter of Arnold Greenway. She decided to withdraw said support mere hours before our two families were to finalize terms, and when the Greenways caught wind of her change of heart, they decided to call off the entire thing. To the misery of my nephew. He was quite smitten, you see.”

Hmmmm.

“Oh, and of course, there was also the time that she decided to go on a drunken tirade about my late father--her own brother--on the very occasion of his funeral. In front of hundreds of esteemed guests. That was certainly a manner of insult and humiliation that is difficult to simply forgive and forget, let me tell you.”

Okay, now that one did sound pretty bad, Hector thought. But Lionel was far from done, apparently, and as Hector continued to listen, he still couldn’t help distrusting every version of events that this guy was feeding him.