Diary entry after returning to her cottage deep in the Steelhead Nevermoor Woods.
Considering my apprehension, I think last night’s walkabout in the old city went well enough. The streets seemed bumpier, the air more deeply chilled, the… well, everything had a sharp edge to it. Even though I know nothing has changed, and it is my own perceptions.
Sharp edges are most noticeable to those with soft exteriors, and I know I have grown soft, sensitive, and apt to shrink into the shadows so much more easily than in years past. Truly, I cannot tell if New Babbage changed in my absence, or if it was just I. Though, I think it may be both. Shadows seemed darker and longer, voices carrying in the night air were shriller, and I swear I got goosebumps walking through Palisade, the neighborhood that held my deepest memories and security.
Much has changed – yet still more remains the same. Time does not stand still, and especially not in a city where time is tended to so lovingly. This notion does bring a wonderment to mind, though. In my long night walk, I did not catch so much as a glimpse of the clockwinder going about his nightly errand. People change – that is a given. But clocks should not. I sense much is amiss deep in the springs and escapements of the City. And when a clock keeps bad time – everyone behaves badly.
Or maybe it is simply the opium talking. I will return again, if I can manage to wake before noon, perhaps I will see if the city looks differently under the thin sunlight that pierces the haze when it can.
But for now I must sleep, I am dearly exhausted.
(Small note: In RL a longstanding committment has been seen through to its end, and I am re-adjusting to a life with possibly more time and less sadness. My leaving Babbage was due to a need to emotionally adjust my SL to more easily be coped with by my RL. But things are ever in change, and as I re-invent my virtual diversions, we will see where they lead. I appreciate the patience my friends have extended me, more grateful than you will ever know.)