“But why me?
Because, idiot, you... are funny and smart and you have a giant heart that you can't even pretend to hide. And you love your friends and your mum, and you held my hand and made me sing when I was so scared I thought I was going to die. I knew you understood, right from the beginning, this thing inside, the stuff in your head that you need to make real. You get that.... And you wear stupid Superman pyjamas without any irony, and your face lights up when you talk about the movies you love.... And... you protect my dwarf. You always have her back. And you have a dimple when you smile that's so cute I almost died the first time I saw it.”
“I said that I am in love with you. I've tried not to be, I really have, but it's just useless. I know you don't feel the same way about me, but I had to tell you because... well, you're all I think about. All the time. I miss you every second that you're not with me... and I know you won't want to be around me anymore, but, Camilla... you're one of the best friends I've ever had. You're smart and amazing and weird and probably the most beautiful person I've ever seen... and before I met you, all I wanted was just to fast-forward through everything. But, really, I think my life was just paused, or something. You... made me press play. You made everything move. And no matter where you go, or whatever you feel about me... I will love you forever for that.”
“She doesn't follow me.
She doesn't call out my name and chase after me in the rain. It isn't even raining. The sky doesn't even have the decency to provide me with a good movie cliché.”
“Mum looks like someone has told her that Santa will be shortly arriving with that guy from Pride and Prejudice in tow.”
“I think I would give up movies for this feeling.”
“Sam - I liked you from the first moment I met you! I made you invite me to your house for a study group, even though - you know what - I'm pretty good at studying on my own! When I went away, you were the only person I wanted to talk to! You were the first person I needed to see when I got back! I sang in front of you, and I've never let anyone see that part of me before! You are the person... I feel like I've run halfway around the world to find! I thought that was pretty obvious! Apart from throwing myself naked at you while holding a giant sign that says, Samuel, I am completely in love with you too, I don't know what else to do!”
“I'm thinking about the top five all-time greatest movie kisses. I can't believe I haven't made that list.
And I'm thinking about a screenplay I want to write. I have a hunch it'll be the first good movie I've ever written.
This one will be about a girl.
I don't know how I ever tried to write my story without her.”
“I think, because…well, I like the idea of coming up with a story that never existed before, but I don’t really want to be in charge. I don’t want to be famous. I guess I like the idea of sitting in the dark and knowing that I created the thing on screen, that it’s my story, but, like, no-one else has to know it was me. Does that make sense?”
“I know I should be able to find a story in anything. Good screenwriters can pull interesting films out of the asinine and mundane. But everything I've read about writing always begins with ‘write what you know.’ What I know is: quiet streets, topiary, moronic high school arsehats, and homework. Has anyone ever made a movie about homework? Probably. I bet it was in French.”
“I guess some people enter your orbit and get stuck, and there's nothing either of you can do about it.”
“I realize that Camilla is out very own statistical anomaly, an outlier that no one seems to know where to place.”
“And, anyway it's not always about fitting in."
"Nope. Sometimes, it's about reading your environment real quick, and then finding the bits that fit you.”
“My lungs feel like they're imploding. Every part of my body feels like it's trying to run, screaming, from every other part of my body.
And then, apparently, the warm-up is over.”
“So. Are we concocting some elaborate scheme where we pretend to be twins to get your parents back together?”
“You're also going to be out of luck with weapons. And weapons are mandatory for zombie apocalypse survival.'
Camilla is silent for a moment. 'You couldn't just beat them to death with Tupperware? That stuff's tough.'
I grin. 'Maybe if it's filled with Adrian's grandma's cupcakes. I think those are a valuable addition to any arsenal.”
“He looks me up and down blankly. 'So. No Speedos?'
'I left them in my other bag with my muscle shirts and tanning spray. You?”
“Every now and then, if I allow my mental focus to slip, I catch myself looking at her face and forgetting how to breathe. I guess these things take time to fade completely.”
“No one calls me Sammy. My mother occasionally throws a “Samuel”, but I am, and have always been, just Sam. Sammy is a name for five-year-olds and game show hosts and Shinny Happy People.
I am, definitely, not a Sammy”
“No-one knows anything. Anyone who tells you they do... is full of bollocks.”
“So the person you drag with you - she manages to fit in no matter where she goes?'
'Well - she didn't always. But she's levelled up a lot since she started out. She just upgrades her equipment and hopes that there aren't any evil guilds waiting to shoot her in the back. And anyway, it's not always about fiting in, Dex.”
“But I've been kidding myself that this thing I feel for her is just a crush. No matter what I'd heard or read or seen in a movie - no one ever said it was supposed to suck so badly.”
“Nah. You’d survive at least the first act of any movie. The pretty brunettes rarely get bumped off first.’
‘Aw. You think I’m purr-ty,’ she says in a singsong voice.
‘Well, you know, objectively …’ I clear my throat.
Camilla kicks some sand over my towel. ‘I shall take that as a compliment,’ she says, giggling.”
“I fall asleep with the sound of her voice echoing in my head, and a feeling in my chest like someone is scooping my heart out with a spoon.”
“Witcher,’ Three Jackdaws suddenly said, ‘I want to ask you a question.’
‘Why don’t you turn back?’
The Witcher looked at him in silence for a moment. ‘Do you really want to know?’
‘Yes, I do,’ Three Jackdaws said, turning his face towards Geralt.
‘I’m riding with them because I’m a servile golem. Because I’m a wisp of oakum blown by the wind along the highway. Tell me, where should I go? And for what? At least here some people have gathered with whom I have something to talk about. People who don’t break off their conversations when I approach. People who, though they may not like me, say it to my face, and don’t throw stones from behind a fence. I’m riding with them for the same reason I rode with you to the log drivers’ inn. Because it’s all the same to me. I don’t have a goal to head towards. I don’t have a destination at the end of the road.’
Three Jackdaws cleared his throat. ‘There’s a destination at the end of every road. Everybody has one. Even you, although you like to think you’re somehow different.’
‘Now I’ll ask you a question.’
‘Do you have a destination at the end of the road?’
‘Lucky for you.’
‘It is not a matter of luck, Geralt. It is a matter of what you believe in and what you serve. No one ought to know that better than… than a witcher.’
‘I keep hearing about goals today,’ Geralt sighed. ‘Niedamir’s aim is to seize Malleore. Eyck of Denesle’s calling is to protect people from dragons. Dorregaray feels obligated to something quite the opposite. Yennefer, by virtue of certain changes which her body was subjected to, cannot fulfil her wishes and is terribly undecided. Dammit, only the Reavers and the dwarves don’t feel a calling, and simply want to line their pockets. Perhaps that’s why I’m so drawn to them?’
‘You aren’t drawn to them, Geralt of Rivia. I’m neither blind nor deaf. It wasn’t at the sound of their name you pulled out that pouch. But I surmise…’
‘There’s no need to surmise,’ the Witcher said, without anger.
‘There’s no need to apologise.”
“I give myself very good advice, but I very seldom follow it.”
“War was always here. Before man was, war waited for him. The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner.”
“The best moments of life are those when we contemplate beauty in the purely artistic spirit — objectively. I”
“Beyond the hills, a master is who knows our secret names. With bell and bones, he’ll call us home, winter, fall or spring.”
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