The Seeker

  October 2008 »

David paused and looked over the city in front of him. In the two days since he had left the farm, he had been wandering the roads and chatting with travelers. He had learned that the lake, whose shores had first welcomed him to this land, was called Lake Mayuasiri. This city was the largest near it and was called Puquykilla.

The land surrounding the city had been cleared so that the lumber could be used to build houses and the land was now being used to cultivate more edible plant varieties than David could name. Several men were casually inspecting the crops in the mid-morning sunlight.

Puquykilla was large and the design of the buildings partially reminded him of the military outpost he had spent a night in two and a half weeks earlier.

The people streaming into and out of the city on the two major roads were what really set it apart. In the place of soldiers who were all dressed alike was an array of people in various colors with loads as unique as the person. Each one had a different purpose and it appeared very chaotic. David thought that this might be the place to look. As much as Mark liked peace and quiet, he was also enthralled by commerce between people.

David unconsciously fingered the five copper coins in his pocket. He had found two of them on the side of the road and obtained the other three by helping travelers with various things. They probably wouldn't last long and this was a big city that lay before him.

He adjusted the cloak on his shoulders and rejoined the crowd that was pressing toward the city. It was amazing that the carts did not run over anybody around him.

There were two soldiers stationed at the edge of the city to keep an eye on those entering and leaving Puquykilla. They looked bored so David decided to ply them for information. He hoped that his broken grammar and bad accent would not bug them too much. "Good norning."

One of the men turned to David and seemed to expect a request for help. "Hey."

"I'm new to area. What do most people do here for money."

The other guard answered without looking at him, "You can do anything you want as long as it is legal."

The first muttered, "And even then..."

David decided it was a dead end as the city's money sources were either very diversified or the guards weren't familiar with them. Mark had rubbed off on him too much. In any case, he thanked them and passed into Puquykilla. Even if they had known, there was a good chance he would not have understood at first. Their answer would have given him something to ask about though.

Most of the day was spent wandering the streets. A quarter of a mile into the maze was a city wall with gates that could be fortified against invaders. The city had grown a bit since they were last needed.

Along the major streets were booths for almost everything he had come to expect of these people and more. There were breaded frog legs, which he hadn't expected to see, and ingenious game devices. One particularly loud seller had boxes that required a puzzle to be solved before they would open. He asked David first if he had a daughter and then if he had a wife before passing on to another potential customer.

For lunch, David bought a large loaf of bread that cost one of his copper pieces. He found that it was good and filling and he was going to save half of it for later but spotted a boy who looked rather dejected and hungry in the corner of an alley. He couldn't justify letting the bread dry out and he expected to be in the same situation soon, so he gave it to the boy. The kid thanked him immensely and began to eat hungrily. David turned to leave, but hadn't gone far when he heard the boy shout angrily.

He turned around just in time to see a dog run past him with half of the remaining loaf in his mouth. David looked at the boy apologetically but he could not do anything to get the stolen bread back. As some of the loaf was still left, he dismissed the forlorn look on the boy's face and disappeared back into the crowd.

David began to feel tired as the day wore on and he searched the side streets. His mind was running sluggishly from his attempt to look at every face that passed him. His ears felt assaulted by the noise, even though it was from people that were quieter than most others in our Western world.

He decided to spend the night outside of the city where nobody could charge him for a place to sleep. The next day he would have to find some form of work or he would soon starve. For now he was tired and simply wanted a quiet spot where he could relax.

Instead of searching for one of the major roads, David headed north as the various streets allowed him to. Few people were using the smaller road that he found himself on as he left Puquykilla. David's shoulders were still drooped from exhaustion, but the quieter walk had finally begun to relax him.

The first trees that could make a decent place to stop for the night were a good two miles from the last houses of the city. He mulled over the events and sights of the day. Could dogs as bold as the one earlier be trusted to not bite a human?


David's thoughts faded as he glanced up and focused his attention. It was Mark.

Well ....

Well, at least they found each other. I was wondering when it would happen. I was expecting a more joyous reunion though!!!!!

Chris's picture

Several People Have Complained

They're guys, give them a break. We all know guys don't have emotions. :P

Post new comment

Comments closed.