"No..." She smiled. "We do not build like this. We never have. Whatever god first set the monkeys free with fire in their hands and ideas in their heads created the city builders. It is humans who do this. That is why you outnumber all the other races of the world combined."
"In all the plate of the world, do you suppose that is true?"
The Dancing Mistress looked at me sidelong. "Perhaps not a hundred thousand leagues east or west, no. You could not go that far in your lifetime, though."
I smiled at her. "A fast ship and a good crew." Far away from Vanchara, Choybalsan, the Bittern Court and all the ghosts that already followed me, though I was not yet sixteen summers old.
"Until you reached a desert or some mountain spine your hull could not cross. There you would not speak the language, or know what the money is. You would wind up begging beside some purple dock amid people who speak with feathers and curse one another with flowers."
I could imagine worse fates. I'd delivered worse fates to violent men. Even now, sometimes, her words call to me, though I've long since set my course a different way. Then, I simply said, "I am not made to be a sailor over the seas of fate in any case. The Goddess has sent me, you have called me. Someday I will go back for Vanchara. I know my life."
"No one knows their life, Green. Not until long after it is done and some grandchild marks a line or two upon their grave to tell their story in those few words."
[writing] Progriss riport
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