August 15, 2008

Let the Word Take Me p.15

blinked at him, once, twice. "Can a scaleless one be taken by the Word in the presence of a Mouth?" she asked. "You are not of the People, nor of the Lands. Where does a man of skin come from that the Word can touch him?"

She had heard him! David felt sweat break on his forehead, and did the only reasonable thing he could think of. He answered. "My name is David," he said. "I'm a human. Humans come from –" To say Garini would mislead her, but to explain the Allied Systems would only confuse her. God help him – why did this have to be about diplomacy? "From a place called Earth, which lies on the other side of the McKinley nebula." He pointed to it.

She gaped at him, blue-mouthed.

"We are your neighbors," he said. "We have only three days before we leave. We do not want to leave. We love Garini." This was ridiculous – he wasn't speaking, he was constructing sentences like a machine! "We wish to speak, to the Elders of the People, for peace. I wish to speak."

The gecko-girl cocked her head to one side. "The Word issues from the Mouth – David. There is only one place to speak to the Elders: in the place of the Word. It does not matter where you came from. You must come to the gathering in the House of Leaves."

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