Chapter 11: Nachtka Wai Loses

In the sea, perfection is all around us. In the sea, we are cushioned from the vagaries of chance and mutation and all of those countless catastrophes that regularly rock the surface world. There are creatures in the sea that are so perfect that they have not changed in hundreds of millions of years. Sharks remain a perfect predator, largely unchanged over the course of time that dwarfs any civilization’s lifespan. Their behavior does not change. Their diet does not change. They continue, eternal, and beautiful.

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Chapter 9: Horace Gets Left Alone

There was someone warm in my bed. I shifted slightly, an arm going over them, squeezing them gently. They were soft. I squeezed a little bit tighter, pressing my face into warm, soft, faintly musky hair. I felt an ear flick against my nose, and a soft purr filled the air, the vibration rocking my chest. “Good morning, Horace.”

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Chapter 7: A Fat Guy Tries to Bite Horace.

Monday morning broke. For the first few peaceful moments, it was beautiful. Sunshine, the rich and welcoming light of dawn peeking across the valley, setting the hilltops ablaze. Green trees swaying in the breeze, and the soft low buzz of life in full swing outside. The blissful amnesia of sleep left my mind free to worry about minor, silly things. Where’s Betty? Where’s Li? What am I going to make them for dinner today?

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Chapter 5: Ku’s Dad Makes a Deal

I studied the holy geometers. Triangle for violence, the sharp points of a tooth. Quadrangle for stability, the flat sides of a brick. Pentangle for magical power, the fingers of the hand, the basis of all manipulation. Hexangle for resilience, the six sides of the scale. And the circle. I paused over that for a moment. The circle, which could have countless angles, or only one; the symbol of ambiguity. Of divinity constrained. Both infinite, and utterly limited. The order mattered. For this, more than so many other things.

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