Gemini 14. The sound of drumming brings everyone into the present.
They rode on a wave of rhythm that carried them forward. It excited them, the expectation that it had to come to somewhere, to find a destination that it seemed inevitably compelled toward. The patterns of the rhythm created a wake of memory behind them and a vista of probability ahead. But the wakes and the vistas, where did they meet?
And then one of them who listened instantly realized without warning that the destination had been there all along, had never been left, had always been the silence out of which, and into which, the rhythm streamed — the present’s black hole, infinite at the center of time’s whirling galaxy.
Journeyers trekking through mountain snow.
(From Drupad’s “Little Known Secrets of Travel”) “To cross the Teserev Mountains one must enter the shrine of the goddess Alira in the small village of Trakkak in the Teserev foothills, and there, saying the prescribed prayers and lighting candles, remove all one’s clothing and carry it, crossing the mountains naked.
“And though the wind be fierce and the cold bitter as the jaws of death, the traveler shall feel no pain or suffering from it, but only the mildness of a spring day, for the goddess Alira rules the mountains with her gentleness, but tolerates no concealment or defenses against the mountains’ purity.”