the early years
(Part 5 of ?)
The next day passed uneventfully, though not swiftly. Kevin had a dreadful time paying attention to whatever he was supposed to be doing. He was most definitely not in the moment.
When night came he left his robes with Fiona and made his way down to the water again. He made a wide circle around the pool. Eventually he came to a spot where he could vault over the river, instead of flying. He ducked down and crept from one boulder to another.
(Part 4 of ?)
This was wrong. He couldn’t feel otherwise.
He knew enough about local customs to understand that this activity fell plainly in the category of ‘Angering the Gods’. Lu… water spirits… sickness. Now this. Where did the villagers draw their water? How can we analyze it? Hmm… enormous American tourist starts asking difficult questions…
Brilliant! He could hear Fiona now. And then I suppose you’ll be telling them you’re a superhero! No, she wouldn’t call that keeping a low profile. He resumed his watch.
(Part 1 of ?)
June twenty-first 2007, over the Shackleton range, Antarctica.
He looked out the window again. Still nothing. “How’s the weather?”
“Perfectly dreadful. Forty below and the wind is eighty knots below one thousand feet. Happy Solstice.”
“Back at ya, babe. I think it’s time I let Serenity take over.”
Fiona straightened her seat up and adjusted her harness. “She can see better than we can through this weather.”
Kevin scanned his panel again. “Serenity?”
“Would you take us the rest of the way, please?”
(Part 3 of ?)
Eventually Kevin became aware of a growing commotion in the central courtyard. A number of villagers had come in. Some of them were quite agitated. There was one word that he could make out: Ghost.
(Part 2 of ?)
Back in Houston, Barney was admiring his work. Serenity’s newly–regenerated skin gleamed under the lights of Building Seven. He was considering renaming the building 24/7, as he’d spent so much time here this past month. She’d come back in a rather dirty state, with volcanic rock dust everywhere on the outside and a couple of grinning fools on the inside.
(In progress. Part 1 of ?)
November third, 2006. Jakar Dzong, Bumthang, North Central Bhutan.
He swirled the tea in his bowl and tried not to think about how cold he was. If this was fall, he wasn’t sure he could handle winter. At least not on a monk’s rations. For his metabolism it was essentially a fast. The smell of the butter lamps had him thinking about popcorn. Not much of a meditator yet, but he was quite new at this sort of thing. “OMmanipadmehung, ommanipadmehung, ommanipadmehung…