Sir Edwin, Professor Parish, and the rest have sat me down, to write everything I have experienced in the past few months, keeping nothing back, because as they tell me, it is somehow essential to "the future of Arynthia." Yes, "future of our Arynthia." Sir Edwin and the Professor both diligently recall our excursion to the edge of Arynthia, across the Coor delta, past Thianburg, to the Golden Ilse, but the secrets there have to wait, for I should start with my recollection. In the year I turn 17, I have to go back to the beginning of the last few months and go back to the time when my father maintained the Evangeline Skyport to the moment when the desolate geneviever captain arrived to first choose a room on the port.
I recall him as if it were yesterday, wheeling himself on his chair, with his bags floating about him on whirring mechanical platforms. He was built like a stocky man, wore a yellow hogan cap with a red stripe, evident of geneviever captains, but he was no stranger to aging or the bleak clouds lingering outside the boarding room. His old uniform was soaked, manifesting from the storm outside, and torn near his chest. His hands, scarred down from the wrist to the fingers, gently closed the glass doors and ferried himself silently to the statue with the ashtray. I remember him keeping to his own vices, engrossed in the latest edition of Airborne, while periodically looking around at the rest of the indoor lobby. A few minutes later, something clicked, and distress shone on his face:
"I'll be damned if I don't get served over here! What manner of port behavior is this? Hey pup, come over here."
He said in his raspy, disgruntled voice that said not once, but twice and with some extra air around his throat. He then gently laid the paper on the ashtray and started to eye me up and down. It was then he ordered a single three-fourths glass of milk and told me to grab my "old man" for him on the way. When I had brought it to him, along with my "old man," he smiled soberly, he drank slowly, along with much appreciation on his face, like a young boy after a rough day playing outside, never ceasing to take his eyes off the amber-tinted glass.
"This is an excellent port," he started to reckon; "and a fine little boarding room. Not many patrons here, I take it?"
My father, now standing next to him and me, politely agreed, and even accepted the current state of the port.
"Well, then," the man started, " this is the place for me. Here is something to liven this place up," and handed my father 40 speckles. 40 speckles. 39 more than my father charged for a month. 39 more than what we ate in a year. He continued, "I'll stay here for a while. You let me know when I've used those up. I'll need my food, plain and simple, whatever chow you have cooking, remember to slap it on my plate. Oh, I may have forgotten to introduce myself; I was a fair old geneviever captain, since the day they arrived into Imperial hands. You men can call me Cap for now...," asserting himself, in the slightest manner possible, in front of us, the feeble port owners, without a singular regard to who else may be listening.
And as torn and soaked as his clothes were, so were his mannerisms. Even more so, his voice matched the tattered uniform and had none of the appearances of a man who had risen to the occasion on a geneviever, however, was evocative of the multicolored uniforms of the Groundlanders. The days passed, and all we could learn was strike him as a lonely miser; His wit turned to temper, and his politeness humored himself to the point where he was no longer amused.
He was very silent to the others, silent to our faithful workers and silent to the world. Until one would strike a conversation with him. Then whoever woke the beast would feel the wrath of the man, the sleeping fury hidden through the years of experience commanding disobedient geneviever workers. The poor soul would near instantly get clobbered to leave the boarding room at once, or so he says, for we have never asked why, nor repeated to our poor souled customer the same instructions. However, they wouldn't mind, and neither would we as Cap simply kept to his own. Every day he would go outside and enjoy the sunset, wary of the ships that pass by closer to the port. Although it was one of the very many duties my father performed, you would still see the captain outside, every evening, with a circular map, charted with foreign lines and symbols, two compasses, and an upright viewing scope with a string marking the center. At first, we thought he wanted to meet another of his kind, to meet another geneviever pilot or captain, but unfortunately, we were able to see that he was wary to avoid all contact from any other ship. He was suspicious of anything getting too close and anyone who entered the boarding room. When a pilot or aviator did enter the room, however, Cap had always asked, "are you from past The Gorge?", to which they would always answer with a resounding no.
Everyone choked a little when they heard about "The Gorge." It was not a safe place for humans...