The Chanticleer raised his tankard and sing-songed,
What a paragon of Man have we,
Von Cushing frowned. He thought the Chanticleer's words were vulgar and distasteful. "But the Dragon is dead, sillyman," Peter replied, using a common derogative to refer to the Chanticleer.
The Chanticleer smiled, the insult did not bother him. He had been called worse names before. Besides, he was having too good of a time. He had a place to stay in, a warm bed waiting for him, he had plenty of good food, good drink, and good company (considering the circumstances). And no matter what happened with the man named Denom, the Chanticleer was sure to end up with enough material to create a composition so wondrous that he would be the most renowned poet from the western Mountains of Carpathia to the eastern Ocean of Aryn. And what more could a bardsman want? The Chanticleer's smile then turned into a grin. There was one more thing he wanted. "More wine!" he piped up and motioned the server to him. "And what's your name?" he asked as she bent to refill his cup. "Lindsey," she giggled.
But others at the table were not so full of joie`d`vie. Fred was one of them. He gazed at the Doctor from Verboten. Von Cushing was obviously a man of strength and intelligence. But Fred had no sympathy for his cause. "For a learned man, you are most foolish."
"Oh?" Von Cushing eyed Fred, "And do you have some insight I do not?"
Locke tensed and his eyes burned into Fred. No one in this Keep knew of Denom's claim, and Locke wanted to keep it that way. Fred didn't seem to notice Locke, instead his attention was fixed on Von Cushing. "Do any of us have insight into Dragon's or their ways?" Fred asked. "True, the Dragon is dead. But who is to say that there are not other horrors waiting there? Or even other Dragons?"
"Dragons are a rare breed and do not consort with their own kind. That is a well known fact," Von Cushing replied.
Fred laughed, "If you know so much then why do you seek out the monster's lair?"
"There is always more to learn," the Doctor answered forthrightly.
"Yes!" Sir Lens added, raising his drink in toast. "To knowledge and those who seek it!"
"To knowledge!" their host's toast was repeated as proper decorum dictated.
9/24/2000 3:12:08 PM
The Never Ending Quest Home
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