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Nov 14, 2019 6:29 PM
Apprentice Deskyl and WWII Jean
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The woman signs again, hands low, making an effort not to draw attention.

    "More, please?" the droid asks, when he's done.

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The poem has nine more stanzas.

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"Thank you, sir."

"I'm DZ, and this is Deskyl."

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"Jean. Not pleased to meet you, and there's no call to sir me."

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    "Okay." She signs to her companion, and receives a fairly halting signed reply. "We're lost, and Deskyl is hurt; can you show us someplace safe to stay while she heals, please?"

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He's staring at her hands again, but he doesn't throw anything this time.

"Here's as safe as anywhere. What's wrong with her?"

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DZ signs again; Deskyl shrugs.

    "We aren't sure, and I don't know how to say what we do know. She just needs to rest."

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"Even dreams can do better than that, most of the time. Sick? Starved? Gassed? Shell-shock?"

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Deskyl sighs, closes her eyes again, and after a minute, signs, briefly but confidently.

    "None of those. How would you say..." she nudges Deskyl, and signs to her, and Deskyl gestures at one of the empty bottles littering the room and sends it floating in a slightly wobbly circuit of the space.

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He considers this, unalarmed. "Magic?"

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Nod. "Someone hurt her with magic."

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"Delightful. She can have the bed if she wants it."

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They confer; Deskyl has noticeable trouble signing, again.

    "She says I should tell you that we're not a dream."

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"You and the last hundred."

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DZ translates that; Deskyl shrugs, stretches, and moves to the bed.

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"And ... DZ, is it? Do you need a bed?"

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"No, but -" she examines the lamp to find its power cord, and shows it to him. "I'll need this."

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"Make yourself at home."

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"...I'll need Deskyl to make something, for this."

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"Ah. Of course, why should the dream robot be compatible with the house's electricity. How soon will you need it?"

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"A few days." She goes back to sit by Deskyl on the bed.

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"I can find you someone by then who'll know how to rig something up, if it comes to that."

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"Thank you, but Deskyl will be unhappy if someone else does it."

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"As you like."

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"Tell me about this place, please?"

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