Scene Forty Eight
In which things get a little better
Devlin let the wind flow through his hair, it made a whistling noise. He wasn’t really sure what had happened, but the mission was kind of, sort of under weigh again. That didn’t exactly make him feel happy, but it did make him feel a little bit better.
He was sitting on the board of a windsurfer, and Devlin had decided that he would use their proper title from now on. They had saved him and he was grateful. He just wished they would stop offering him ‘medicinal herbs’ wrapped in tinfoil. He knew that they were being hospitable; he thought that this probably counted as a high honour, but he had had enough of all that in College.
Johnson was managing to stand up behind the windsurfer who was giving him a ride. Devlin wondered where he had learnt to do that, certainly it was something he hadn’t managed to do.
He was sitting behind a man wearing the strange combination of a three piece suit and a rainbow, ‘nuclear disarmament’ headband. Devlin wondered how he was steering the board; he was holding it so steady that it was like sitting on the ground in a strong headwind.
They were a long way up, still above the ocean, and that meant that he didn’t really know how fast they were going, so he just relaxed and went with it. That seemed to be what Johnson was doing, and he looked positively joyful about this high flying ride.
Devlin nudged the man in front, “Where did you say you were taking us again?” he asked
“Like we said last night man, you’re off to see the wonderful mages of Oz, man. They can get you a nice new jet man, and then you can do…. whatever it is that you were trying to do.”
Devlin tried to remember last night. He had a vague mental image of people dancing around a camp fire, while someone played steel drums inside his frontal cortex. He decided to take the man’s word for it, he suspected that he could have been told that he was a delicious Varity of frog last night, and he would have just smiled and nodded.
So Devlin thought about the mages. His instincts prepared a ‘flight or fight’ response, but he beat them down. Go with it, he told himself, you’re not going to get a nice structured mission on this one, so just go with it, and improvise.
He still wasn’t happy about the mages though. It was considered common wisdom that the only reason that that school existed at all was so that all at people who wanted to learn magic could be safely isolated from everyone else.
When Devlin thought about it the only good thing he had ever known to come out of the study of magic was the scrying crystals, and even they were unreliable for almost anything useful. Devlin was not an engineer of any kind, but he had a distinct feeling that the communication device you were relying on shouldn’t be affected by the colour of the shirt you were wearing.
However, like the man said, they were off to see the mage’s. Devlin had been considering the odds of a group of wind surfers’ just stumbling across them in the middle of an ocean like they had. Someone up there likes us, he thought; let’s go find out how much they like us.