Jun 23, 2021 9:05 PM
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"I'm glad it's not commonly warred over, at any rate."

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"Probably better than the alternative. Anyway, if you ever need to coordinate with the neighborhood, such as it is, I'm just a bit of a walk over that way most of the summer."

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"Is there a landmark?"

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"Nothing I'd expect to be more recognizable with less description than just... the fact that there's someone there, the fact that I might have a clothesline up or a fire burning."

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"Okay, understood."

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They'll leave her alone, then. So will pretty much everyone, at least for the immediate future.

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That suits her pretty well. She builds her house. She finds plausibly edible-looking plants and starts cultivating samples of them, generation after generation, till she thinks they're safe to taste; this takes about a week for the most promising items.

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Then eventually she'll be able to try some berries or dandelions or garlic mustard.

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They're all pretty good, though she has some recipe experimentation to do.

Better-fed, she begins to feel up to exploring her environs more, in slow spirals out from the treehouse.

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The surrounding area is mostly woods, with a mix of different tree species - some maples and conifers of various kinds, some elms, and a few other sorts. There's an asphalt highway going north and south, that sees occasional traffic mostly from trucks transporting large amounts of cargo. There's a billboard by the highway with an ad for a car rental chain. There's a little river that eventually meets another little river to become a medium-sized river. A handful of people have off-the-grid homes of various kinds in the woods; another handful have cottages like the changeling she met first. South of Chequy Tower there's a fork in the road where the north-south highway meets another one heading west (but no further east), which sees more traffic than the stretch of road north of Chequy Tower. The woods to the east are mostly empty of people; not very far to the east they give way to human towns. There's a town to the west, miles away, a little smaller than Chequy Tower, and surrounding it there are fields being farmed.

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She sits on the billboard and watches trucks go by for a bit. Peers at the crops to see if there's anything she might want to nip a cutting of.

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The trucks sometimes have brand names or phone numbers or both. Occasionally they have hazardous materials signs.

They've got peas, rye, zucchini, parsnips and corn growing in the nearest fields, and there are some glass buildings with oranges, mangoes and avocados inside. Further west there are some animals in pens, and then more fields with an only partly overlapping selection of crops.

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Animals are sort of disturbing and she gives them lots of space. She smells all the plants except the ones behind glass. Looks for someone to buy them from in case that's customary.

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There are people at work on or near the farms. Someone's checking that their machinery is still in working order; some people are picking avocados; some people are sowing seeds of some kind.

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"Excuse me," she says to a seed-sower.

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"Hello!" the seed-sower says, smiling. "Can I help you?"

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"Maybe! Who should I talk to about buying some cuttings or seeds?"

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They can point out where to find the right person to ask, a butterfly-winged person in a backless dress who'd be absolutely delighted to sell cuttings of pretty much everything.

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This looks more like the sort of fairy Promise is used to! "Hi! What do you charge for seeds and cuttings of your plants?"

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They can quote some prices. It won't cost much if all she wants is single seeds and small cuttings.

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That will do her for sure. She wants to smell the plants in the greenhouse if that's okay to be sure which she wants.

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She can do that, sure. "Not the kinds you're used to?" the butterfly-winged person asks.

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"Yeah, I'm not from around here."

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"Welcome to the area."

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"Thanks." Oooh, mango smells lovely.

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