25. Containers for His Grief

As summer gives way to fall, Inglorion comes to think that his father left no record of his crime and its consequence. He might not have thought of it at all. Inglorion accepts that he won’t learn what he thought he wanted to know. It wouldn’t be the first time the gods answered a different […]

23. The Castaway

After days of blank mourning, a purpose comes to Inglorion in the night. He will visit a nearby shrine, El Tiradito. The name means “The Castaway,” and the memorial is dedicated to sinners and outcasts, souls too degraded and impure to be buried in hallowed ground. Tereus was a non-believer, criminal and occasional drunk; Inglorion […]

21. The Gods Can Show You Whatever They Want

Lucius hears about a rash of attacks near the railroad crossings, and he cannot stop talking about them. It bothers him when Inglorion insists that Brutus is an adult, an army veteran, and probably more prepared to defend himself and his property than they are. Clearly he expects Inglorion to check on Brutus, and won’t […]

20. I Don’t Think Anything at All

The summer muddles along, alternating between enervating heat and violent storms. It’s understood that Inglorion will spend much of his time with Tereus, observing and helping with the house and crops. If Inglorion’s absent for more than a day or two, Tereus tries to lure him over with food or drink. This makes sense to […]

19. Surrounded by the Dead

Tereus hates to think of the water slipping away, so they  work side-by-side to repair the basins, dredging out silt, digging them deeper, lining them with flat stones. It’s taxing and absorbing work. After an hour, the sun emerges. The heat rises quickly, and clouds billow over the mountains. As they dig and shape a […]

15. To The First Storm of Summer

Over the spring and early summer, the pullets grow into young hens, Inglorion finishes the Thousand Nights and One Night, and both households’ crops mature. Brutus gives Inglorion a tobacco plant and teaches him how to cultivate it. Summer settles in, and it’s as bad as everyone says. Worse, since predictions and warnings are abstract, […]

14. Delighted with His Useless Gift

Lucius trots off, probably figuring its not the stupidest thing he’s been asked to do that evening. Inglorion perches on a nearby retaining wall. It’s a pleasant evening, and in a very few minutes he hears Lucius’s happy chatter, and Brutus’s soft replies. They come into view. Brutus is pulling a small, hand-drawn wagon. Inglorion […]

10. The Iron Owl

By mutual, tacit consent, Brutus and Inglorion settle into a casual master/apprentice arrangement. Inglorion knows little about farming and water harvesting in this climate; Brutus knows a lot. Though the older man rarely provides step-by-step lessons, or even explicit advice, he’s willing to let Inglorion shadow him as he tinkers with his cisterns and basins, […]