They’ve been walking toward that woods for a long time with no further posting. I had expected something by now, but there’s a stillness hanging in the cyber-air that doesn’t seem to quit. Not even a peep from Sigismund or Anna or Gallant or Goofus.
But there are other wanderers. (As soon as I typed that word, I remembered: Not all who wander are lost.)
There’s a pair wandering somewhere, not currently anywhere close to the others we have met. Maybe the hallway outside the conversation room? Maybe the woods near the kiln? No, it’s much less distinct than that. It’s in here somewhere, and not with any of the others yet, but beyond that it doesn’t yet have a where.
In the background, a piano is softly playing. Satie.
One of them is familiar. Christopher Lloyd, in the guise of Judge Doom from Who Framed Roger Rabbit. He’s not that character, but that’s the actor and that’s how he looks. He is leading the other wanderer by the hand.
The other wanderer is a small child. Not one of the boys. To someone who is especially good at recognizing infants and small children, he would look strikingly similar to the infant that appeared briefly in “A Room of One’s Bone.” In most ways, he looks like a toddler, but he walks slowly yet confidently, carrying himself as an adult would. His eyes and ears are huge, at least twice normal size. The eyes are two slightly different shades of brown, and are unblinking. His mouth is undersized, with no discernible lips, and it remains tightly closed, an almost-invisible slit near the bottom of the face. He has a nose, but it is ordinary and unremarkable.
I think they are going to have names, but I don’t know yet what they are.
The tall one is leading the child by the hand, but now as I look more carefully, I see that they are joined by a short chain, attached to cuffs on their wrists.
Even though I am a disembodied narrating voice, the tall one looks briefly at me with palpable suspicion as they pass and move on.
How the hell did he do that? I’m sure that I’m not visible.
The child’s huge, unblinking eyes did not see me.