Thursday, July 22, 2010

Rogers arrived this morning and Zeb took him down to the site.

LaFontaine is so pompous, but I almost felt sorry for him the way Rogers dismissed everything he said.  Rogers just walked by him while LaFontaine was explaining what happened and talked with Zeb.   Of course, Rogers is right.  LaFontaine was in the library, no where near the cave in, but still, a little politeness would have eased tensions.    LaFontaine was so embarrassed he is hiding in his room.  Working on his notes, he says.

On the upside, I have had lots of time to read the letters I found in the sleeping quarters.  Clearly, all the occupants were male.  There are several bundles of letters from women, sisters, mothers, aunts and wives.  One unfinished letter is very poignant.   It is written by an “Alastair Horten” to  Clara his sister:

Dearest Clara—

I was overjoyed to receive your letter of Friday last and to hear that Papa is recovered.  Do not worry about the cost of his treatment by the good Doctor Eastman.  With the help of my companions I have recently captured many of the strange creatures called Drake that inhabit the island of Apala.  These creatures are vicious, with snake-like bodies and powerful beaks that recall the stories of St. George fighting the mythical dragon.  But do not worry for my sake.  We use every precaution.  The creatures are trapped in the mouth of caves on the island using nets made of the strongest steel.    The Nirod are greatly impressed with our ability to capture the beasts and value them most highly.  In exchange for the beasts, they have given us great quantities of the blue dust Ampratite.  If you remember, this is the mineral that when mixed with the chemical Zephane gave off the electrical charge Mr. Tesla and Mr. Edison found so intriguing.   In short, sister, our fortune is nearly made.

Your Loving Brother,


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