“We startled some strange, long-necked shaggy creatures that had been grazing in the field, and I swear one of them spit at Feniul. Hagen slipped off of Leontes'neck and started to follow the creatures into the little copse of trees they had taken shelter in, fascinated, but I called him back.
"They spit."I said. "They probably bite as well."
"They are ill tempered things,"Amacarin agreed."But I saw someone riding one yesterday. It did not look like a smooth-gaited beast, though."
Now there was even more longing in Hagen's face."
Luka started laughing. "I shall buy you one when you finish your apprenticeship." He told my brother. "It can be your mastery gift. A hairy, spitting cow horse.”
“I could never live like this," I whispered to Luka.
"No," he agreed. "I've seen you grovel. It's not very convincing.”
“The birds screeched and continued to dive at us. One of them settled on a nearby branch and began berating us. I stopped in my tracks, however, when it actually called out, “Stupid creatures!” “Can they talk?” “Yes,” Shardas said curtly, “making them even worse than Marta’s monkey. If you talk to them, they will mimic the words. Unfortunately, most of what they hear are curse words, so please don’t be shocked if they call you ruder things than ‘stupid’.”
“Now I could stand easily in my pure, white dress and smile while King Caxel glared away.”
“Last time she had been here, the room had been pastel, romantic and soft. Now it was icily white. It was urban, out of a slick magazine, as if some cold, successful woman lived here with two possessions and an empty refrigerator.”
“You already are everything you are seeking. Do not try to become something else.”
“A living planet is a much more complex metaphor for deity than just a bigger father with a bigger fist.”
“Dammit woman, stop trying to beat me. I'll sue you for domestic violence.”
“I don’t think most people realize—and there’s no reason they should—the amount of demeaning garbage you have to take if you want a career in the arts. I mean, going off to med school is something you can say with your head high. Or being a banker or going into insurance or the family business—no problem. But the conversations I had with grown-ups after college… “So you’re done with school now, Bill.” “That’s right.” “So what’s next on the agenda?” Pause. Finally I would say it: “I want to be a writer.” And then they would pause. “A writer.” “I’d like to try.” Third and final pause. And then one of two inevitable replies: either “What are you going to do next?” or “What are you really going to do?” That dread double litany… What are you going to do next?… What are you really going to do?… What are you going to do next?… What are you really going to do…?”
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