There's little more that a man can ask from life than skimming the limestone fissures beneath Kentucky in a single-seat stoneshark. A few hundred pounds of hydrogen in a narrow leather bag, a thin harness, and a spark-tipped line gun are all I need to hunt those who might strike at my home resting in the dark behind me.
I reversed my pedalling, backing air with the wicker propellors as I prepared to shoot a tie-line and warp myself to a limestone cascade. Even a shark pilot must needs stretch his legs a time or two. It was the work of minutes to bring myself safely in, to ground the gasbag, and swing myself free to the wall.
Safe, finally. Whatever that meant in the stone seas beneath the skin of the world.