PART 1,2 , 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 910,11,


He did not see Melody for days. It drove him up the wall. Joseph found him too sour to be with. Besides, he now had Patrick he could tap for generosity. He did not blow up any bridges, however.

"I've got business with Patrick. If I see Dee or Melody... I'll... I'll let you know..."

"Yes," he answered, half wanting to tell the other to go to hell, but restraining himself.

"Yes indeed," he thought, "you son of a bitch, I wonder how much you know that you haven't told me?"

"She'll come back," said Joseph. "You've got her luggage. And I've got Dee’s...."

He was right on that score. Except that the women came back when neither of them was around and moved out their possessions.

That only made things worse. Her mail was picked up at the consulate. People saw her. It was that he did not see her. He couldn't even say she was missing.

The city suddenly looked very dismal to him.

"Why couldn't we have skipped Nepal? If she hadn't made friends with that crazy Dee...If I hadn't yelled... and lost control ... of my temper...Damn ... Where is she?"

The valley was full of people. And some of them were foreigners. And some of those were blonde foreigners...

He bicycled up and down the brightly sun-splashed streets, looking. His lungs seemed to be torn. His skull seemed to be cracked in thirty places. Where.. ?

A blonde woman! Over there!

He held his breath. It was not Melody. It was nothing like Melody.

"You fool," he thought. "Why did you let her go... ? What difference ... does a little smoke make ... It's another world, another culture ... Damn Dee! Nothing was wrong until..."

But deep inside, he was not sure of that. He did not examine

Eyes on walls watched him. Faces on lingams watched him.

"Where is she?"


"Is that her?"

He couldn't tell. Too far off. Two women together on bicycles, one with long black hair, the other's was yellow, bouncing, bouncing. He went in hopeful pursuit.

Bring! Brring!

He lost sight of them.

"Where are they?"

Looking to the right and to the left.

"There they are!"

They stopped at a bookshop and he closed the gap between
them. Almost there

"Ahhh..." he started to say, when they turned to face him, smiling vacant smiles.

"Excuse me," he said. "I thought you were someone I knew."

The crowded streets were full of figures who were pockets of pain for him. This one. That one. As soon as he knew that they were not Melody, they no longer were people. They were sources of pain. The world was stabbing him to death! But why hadn't he died, then?

The streets became empty for him.

When they did meet again, he felt that months had gone by. He began to imagine that she had died.

"What if something has happened?" he thought.

"How will I ever know?’

She was standing outside the post office. "Oh hello, Honey," she said, as if they had just parted a few minutes before. She put some stamps on the letters which she had just sealed. Dee was a slight distance away, unlocking her bicycle. She saw him and remained where she was, smiling lightly to herself.

At first he had planned to tongue-lash her for her foolishness and selfishness. But seeing her again drove all that from his mind. He was so glad that she was allright! And he was a little afraid to precipitate another separation

"Ahhh..." he started to say, when they turned to face him, smiling vacant smiles.

"Excuse me," he said. "I thought you were someone I knew."

The crowded streets were full of figures who were pockets of pain for him. This one. That one. As soon as he knew that they were not Melody, they no longer were people. They were sources of pain. The world was stabbing him to death! But why hadn't he died, then?

The streets became empty for him.


When they did meet again, he felt that months had gone by. He began to imagine that she had died.

"What if something has happened?" he thought.

"How will I ever know?"

She was standing outside the post office. "Oh hello, Honey," she said, as if they had just parted a few minutes before. She put some stamps on the letters which she had just sealed. Dee was a slight distance away, unlocking her bicycle. She saw him and remained where she was, smiling lightly to herself.

At first he had planned to tongue-lash her for her foolishness and selfishness. But seeing her again drove all that from his mind. He was so glad that she was allright! And he was a little afraid to precipitate another separation from her.

"How are you?" she smiled.

He could barely believe her casual words.

"Fine..." he started, awkwardly, but glad she was being pleasant. "Where..." he began to ask one question and changed it into another, "...are you living now?" It sounded so formal!

She did not seem to notice, cheerfully tying a bandanna across her forehead to keep her hair back. "Oh, it's called the Valley Lodge...Much cheaper..." she grinned.

"Uh..." he said, feeling as if he were playing a game of chess. "They have any more rooms ... ?" His heart started to beat faster. Then it plunged.

"No," she said, stepping into the post office. He stepped after her quickly. She got at the end of a long and motley line of customers.

"But," she smiled with an almost too-sweet smile, "you can move in with us...?"

"Us?" he thought, but did not ask to whom that referred, trying to wrestle some kind of continuance with Melody.

"Good idea!" he laughed weakly.

Melody announced that he was going with them to the lodge. "He's moving in with us," she said. Dee smiled broadly and returned, "That'll be cozy...everyone in one room..."

He did not know what to say, his feeling for Melody knocking all reason out of his head. He didn't know what to do. He decided he had to go with Melody, whatever the arrangements.

"For her sake..." he lied to himself.

"I hope," said Dee, blinking at him with her long dark lashes in an extravagant manner, "that you don't mind a little..."

"Honey, I'm glad to see you again," Melody was saying. "I thought you were mad at me..."

"Not really..." he began.

"I've missed you!" she said.

"And .." he started, looking at three opened buttons of her blouse, "I've missed..."

"...little smoke..." finished Dee.

It did not register on him immediately.

Dee jumped up on the high bicycle seat, showing a lot of leg.

"Is it okay now?"

They all mounted and the bikes moved.

"It's okay!" said Melody, pulling ahead. "He's over that hangup!"

He frowned and thought, "Dammit! They're still at it..."

"Good!" laughed Dee, rolling her eyes at him in victory. "I've still got a stash of Turkish hash!"

"Damn!" he thought. "Damn!"

And the two women were pumping their bicycles and moving ahead of him.
"You'll like it!" laughed back Dee.

"What am I going to do...?" he thought, anguish crowding his lungs again. He felt something collapsing.

He rang the bell.


Then he shouted! "Wait! Hey, Melody! Wait! I'm coming too!"


"Chamba," said the kitemaker, "come this way with the basket!"

The boy paused, first looking at his guru, then at the sheer drop of the cliff.

"Isn't that awfully far out ... ?" he started to say, when Sri Khatvanga turned his dark eyes directly onto his. He shuddered.

"Cham ... ba," the white-haired man said angrily. "It is where the plant grows! We must get this seed!"

Chamba looked away, towards the edge, towards the valley below. Far far away he could see villages and beyond those he could see the stupa of Bodhinath, white and glowing. He could not see the eyes.

"Can the Buddha see me?" he wondered, reaching out into

A plant grew from a crack in the rocks, almost beyond his reach. His fingertips touched the seed-pod, while he held tightly to an outjutting rock. Sri Khatvanga was back from the edge.

His fingertips ... his fingers...

He looked down to the rocks below, frightened.

He grasped the seeds and they came free of the plant. At that moment he felt the rock which anchored him moving. He looked back in horror to see it shifting and about to plunge into space.

"Sri Khatvanga!" he cried, just as it let lose.

"You must be careful," said the kitemaker angrily to the boy.

Chamba did not answer, shifting the weight of the basket as they walked down the forest path, going towards the valley.

"Luckily," said Sri Khatvanga, "I could grab your arm to prevent you from falling!"

Chamba watched where he was stepping on the trail, not looking up.

"Otherwise, I could have lost the. seeds!"

The old man was scowling all the while. The young boy was sad. He thought it was because he had almost disappointed his friend.


"And gather," said the guru, "ashes from the burning ghats ...”

"I will not," the boy said, "be allowed to do that!"

The old man glared at him, his dark eyes piercing him.

"Yes you will ... Any kind of ashes ... the remnants of the wood-the person ... it doesn't matter..."


"From the river at the ghats," continued Sri Khatvanga. “If necessary, mixed with the water..."

"Please ... this is..."

"Do it!"

"Ah..." said Chamba. He did not wish to go to the burning ghats.

"And do not lose any..." thundered the old man, "...or I shall beat you!"

Chamba looked at the pots of leaves, seeds, and crushed materials now lining the kitemaker's shop, sadly. They had taken so long to gather.

And he knew, from experience, that Sri Khatvanga would beat him if he did not obey him.


"Now," the old man said, studying some old manuscripts, "we are getting closer!"

Chamba grew excited, but said nothing.

"Ah cha!" the white-bearded man said, stroking his full beard.

"Yes?" asked Chamba anxiously.

"One thing more!" the other laughed, turning his sunken eyes towards the boy, "and you must get it!"

Chamba shuddered in anticipation.

"But why me? Why is it so often me?"

Sri Khatvanga scowled. "The book ... the ancient sages say so! Some things are gathered by a youth else the power is drained... I am not young ... You are young! Therefore you must collect some of these elements!"

"Oh, Guru-ji..." started the boy, looking at the darkening face of the kitemaker. But he got no further.

"Cha ... m ... ba!" he said softly.

"Ah..." exhaled the boy in submission. "What is that I must collect?"

"The saliva of the black bull!"

"At Shiva's shrine?" asked the boy in horror, not wishing to go there again.

"Yes," mumbled the old man, looking at the pages of diagrams in his hands.

"How much, Guru-ji?" stammered the young boy.

Sri Khatvanga did not look up. "A mouthful."

"The bull has such a big shall I carry it? How shall I get it?"

The boy's guru's eyes were dark, ringed with purple blotches. "Your mouthful..." he sneered. "And you shall carry it to me in your mouth!"

"Ah cha!" shuddered Chamba, about to get up.

"Not yet," said Sri Khatvanga, waving his hand. "You must wait until a moonless night..."

"Night? At night ... ?"

"Not yet...”


"Did you lose any?" asked the old man.

Chamba was spitting into a cup, apprehensively eyeing his guru. The other's face seemed to be darker than ever in the frame of white hair.

"I ... I-could not help it..." said Chamba, coughing. "I swallowed some as I ran home!"

"You fool! I told you!"

And the man grabbed the boy by the back of his neck.

Chamba thought that he was going to be killed and gasped fearfully, breathless.

"We do not have a second chance on this one!" Sri Khatvanga snarled, pinching Chamba's lower jaw with his large gnarled hand.

"Open your mouth!" he demanded.

The boy obeyed, shivering.

"There's no more in my mouth..." he said around the hand, feeling the one on his neck tighten.

"Yes," said his angry guru, "but, it is in you....”

With that he began to stick two fingers down the boy's throat. Chamba began to gag.

"Throw up! We'll have you throw up! That will do it!"

Chamba's eyes popped, strangling on the fingers.

Soon, Sri Khatvanga had his wish, and what was inside was outside. He caught it all in a bowl.

Chamba sat, shaken, wiping his mouth, wiping his nose of remnants.

"Give me that too!" snapped the old man.

Chamba obeyed, scraping the few drops from his fingers.

Later, when it was all transferred to a stoppered jar, Chamba watched as Sri Khatvanga labelled it. There was no revealing name or title. He merely inscribed its number.

One. Two. Three


Sri Khatvanga made potions and made rituals. They came together. Chamba watched as the other worked long into the night, until he could stay awake no longer. His guru, however, continued to chant, grind powders, add fluids. The expression in his eyes seemed to hold all the ingredients together.

Chamba did not dream any dreams.


The kitemaker was no longer the kitemaker. He sold none any longer. He made none any longer. His shelves were full of jars and containers. His eyes were full of nightlong thoughts and the suggestion of things long dead or forbidden.


"Sri Khatvanga. . . "

"Yes, Chamba..." snorted his guru, studying a chart.

"Ah..." started the boy.

"Well! I have no time to waste ... What is it?"

"The potter ... wants a charm..."

The dark eyes glared, looking into the street.

"Where is he, then?"

"Maha-Guru-ji," said Chamba respectfully. "He is frightened-to come himself..."

"Hah!" sneered the old man, looking back at his charts.

"He wishes..." continued Chamba, "to cause a young woman..."

Sri Khatvanga squinted up at him, tracing a design on his own knee with a finger. "A love potion?"

"Yes, Guru-ji ...”

"Foolish idiot!" snapped the white-haired man in the same instant that he reached for a leather bag behind him.

"Wasting magic on women! "

He shook out a few blades of dried grasses while he mumbled a prayer to himself. He held these in his left palm and added a pinch of white powder to it. Both of these he folded into a square of red paper, once used for kites. This, in turn, he folded into a square of white. He looked at Chamba and asked, "Are you watching?"

"Yes, Guru-ji.-,

"Remember everything that I do with these things.-You are my..."

And he did not finish, suddenly looking sad.

"Did he give you anything for me...?"

Chamba nodded, shifting from one foot to another. He handed the old man a coin.

Sri Khatvanga looked at it, then biting it said, "Take this package to the potter..."

"Yes, Guru-ji..." Chamba said, about to run off.

"Wait, wait!" barked the white-haired man. "I must give you instructions to give him ... else it will not work

Chamba listened patiently to the complex instructions.

“ ... and then he should burn it all with-and put the ashes ... and of this the white ashes...into a drink of... and she must drink it all-after seven days, but not after nine!"

"Yes, Guru-ji ... Yes, Guru-ji!" repeated Chamba.

"Repeat the instructions," insisted Sri Khatvanga. "Get it correctly or it will not work...Tell the potter! It must
be done as I say..."

Chamba ran off.

"Fools!" muttered the old man. "Wasting it!"

much later, Chamba returned. Sri Khatvanga sat with his head bowed, making strange noises, as if wheezing.

He looked up, very red-eyed and old-looking. "Ah! Chamba!" he smiled, waving his right hand weakly. "Sit down... sit down."

Chamba was apprehensive. His guru looked so exhausted. What was it? He had only been gone a short while to the potter's shop.

"Chamba," said the bleary-eyed old man, "success is coming closer..."

Chamba smiled, glad to hear that, even though he did not know what it meant.

"I am so happy, Guru-ji!"

"Yes, yes," said Sri Khatvanga, a bit absentmindedly.

"Now," he continued, pointing to the wall, "What do you see there?"

On the wall, dangling by a string, was one square kite, half red, half-white.

"A new kite..." Chamba said, surprised. He had not seen it earlier.

"Yes ... you see a kite..." grinned his guru. "Now...' his hand shaking, but gesturing again towards the kite, "touch it...."

"Touch it?"

"Touch it?"

"Bring it to me!"

Chamba reached for the kite. His hand moved right through it and touched the wall.

"Ah Cha!!" cried the terrified boy. Sri Khatvanga smiled and stroked his beard.

"Bring me the kite, Chamba!" he insisted, his eyes glistening.

Again Chamba's fingers went through the image of the red and white pieces of paper, dangling-appearing to dangle ... in front of the wall.

"I ... I-cannot..." he almost sobbed.

The kitemaker barked, touching the boy's back. "Bring me the kite, Chamba! Hoh! Hoo! Tram-m-m. Phat!"

Chamba felt terrified and the touch of the old man's hand was full of vibrations from the sounds which he had made. They raced to all parts of his body, some sounds staying in his stomach, some residing in his leg-muscles. They all found a home.

"Oh, Guru-ji!" he cried, and reached out to the kite.

His fingers touched it. It was solid, it had substance. Crying, he handed it to his old friend.

Sri Khatvanga smiled, with a look of satisfaction and a momentary softness in his eyes, when he accepted the colored square from the boy.

"Thank you, Chamba!"

"it ... " the boy said, " is my pleasure ... to do your ... bidding."

Ha Ha Hahahah.


"And this grain, crushed, is added to it."

"Yes, Guru-ji. "

"Do you understand, Chamba?"

"Yes, Guru-ji."

The other was silent for a moment. Then he asked, "And if ... it seems-that I have died... I have appeared to die... what are you to do, within a day, within a day?!"

"Stuff your nostrils with this and wait."

"How long?"

"Forever, if necessary, Guru-ji.’'

"Good, good Chamba! Excellent!"

The boy remained silent, looking at the floor.

Sri Khatvanga studied him carefully and then spoke softly, touching the boy's hand gently, making a little pattern with his finger there. "And if you do not ... Chamba, the man squinted and smiled a strained smile, "what will happen?"

"Y-you will remain dead," said Chamba, 'land all the spirits in these jars, pots, bags, and containers will be free ... Then..."

"Then what?" smiled Sri Khatvanga, tracing patterns on
the back of the boy' s hand.

"Then..." choked Chamba fearfully, "they ... will pierce me! Claw me! Freeze me! And ... oh Guru-ji! Burn me! Please, Guru-ji, do not die! I am...afraid!"

The old man smiled. "Fear not, Chamba! Just do as I say... and all will be well!"



"Oh! Good! I do not wish to be pierced, clawed..."

"...frozen or burnt!" ended Sri Khatvanga.

"None of them! I will," he raised his voice loudly, "I will ... obey you even in death!"

Sri Khatvanga scowled. "Apparent death, seeming death!" he corrected.

"Yes, yes," said Chamba, shivering.


"While you are waiting, what will you do?" "Play these tiny cymbals...." "What tune?" "A continuous ringing tune ... "Demonstrate, please... “

KLing Kling-ng-ng-ng!

Kling Kling-ng-ng-ng!

Kling Kling-ng-ng-ng!

KLing Kling-ng-ng-ng!

"Correct, Chamba. But what if my flesh rots, bloats and begins to smell?" "I will continue to play,"

Kling kling-ng-ng-ng!

"What if I become a skeleton?"

"I will continue to play," Kling Kling-ng-ng-ng!

"When will you stop?"

"Never," said Chamba.

The old man smiled.

"When will you stop?"

"Oh," said Chamba, shaking his head, as if to awaken himself, "when you tell me to stop"


"You are alive again!"

"Good Chamba!"

"Yes, Guru-ji" said the bleary-eyed boy.

"But what of sleep?" tested the old man.

"I will not sleep!"

"What of food?"

"I will not eat!"

"What of death Chamba! What of death?"

"I will not die, Sri Khatvanga! I will not die until you give me leave to die....

"Good, Chamba! And if I am alive, and you are dead what then? What if I need you?"

"Call me, Maha-Guru-ji Sri Khatvanga! Call me! I will do your bidding

"What if you disobey me?" whispered the old man, staring at the young boy, who was swaying before him now with half-closed eyes.

"You are more may do as you please, destroy me ... destroy anything...You..."

"Yes," laughed the old man. "Yes, Chamba. Quite correct! I am the more powerful ... I am yet more powerful ...

"Yes, Guru-ji! You ... and I ... POWER! Yet ... yet..."

The boy fell asleep. The magician Sri Khatvanga stared at him, half smiling, but still half concerned.

"Is there a flaw in it?" he asked himself. "No, of course not!"


"Maha-Guru-ji?" Chamba called.

The body of Sri Khatvanga did not move.

"Are you alive?" asked the boy.

No answer came.

"There is no heartbeat....are you dead, Guru-ji?"


"I must get the materials together, then," he said.

It took him a few hours to prepare all the ingredients.
He looked at the magician

"Ah! Still no breathing! must put this"

Sri Khatvanga's eyes opened. There was a slight smile.

"Not yet, Chamba. I was merely consorting in the heavens. It is not necessary-not yet!"


Chamba grew older.

Sri Khatvanga seemed to grow younger.

Chamba's body became taller and stronger. Young women began to cast looks in his direction, whether he was watching or not.

Sri Khatvanga’s body straightened, becoming even taller than before. His gnarled hands contained fewer folds of skin, fewer spots from age. His skin became smoother, fairer, on his face. The terrible purple blotches around his once sunken eyes vanished. His hair was slowly growing darker, the whiteness beginning to vanish.

This too was noticed by the young women and it frightened them. Everyone was very respectful to the magician and his assistant. They bowed their heads, joined palms and avoided direct contact with his eyes.

Sri Khatvanga laughed. The skin on his forehead moved, crowding the whirlpool of dark hairs between his eyebrows.


"How is it," he asked, "Geshe-la, that I am so confused?"

"What do you mean?" asked the monk, stroking his whiskers.

"Sometimes ... ah ... it seems hopeless!"

The lama said nothing. The silence was like a suction. He had to speak.

"Sometimes ... I see Drelhu, who knows nothing of you! And sometimes I speak with you... and you don't seem to know about him!"

. Drelhu and I know each other..." started the lama, but was interrupted by the impatient man he had named Chamba.

"Yes, now... !" he said. "But sometimes ... it is like three different worlds that I am living in..."

"Only three?" laughed Dharma Dorje.

"Maybe more," he said, not seeing any humor in his own statement.

"At once?" squinted the monk, scratching his ear.

"No.-or-yes ... I don't know! Can you explain it?"

"Perhaps you are dreaming...or hallucinating," said the monk.

"No, it's not either of those ... I know when I'm dreaming..."

The monk raised his eyebrows. "Really? That is an important skill!"

"As far as hallucinations..." he laughed, "they are not this clear or consistent”

"Hmmm?" said the lama, looking down at his fingernails. "Then," said the man called Chamba, "what is it?"

"Dorje Chamba!" laughed the monk. "You are the one with all the sense of clarity! I live in a fog! I live ... in the midst ... of illusions and dreams!"

"Could you please clarify this for me?"

"I do not think so... I think that I cannot!"


The lama left the room. And shortly thereafter, Dorje Drelhu entered.

The man called Chamba looked up and asked, "Does Dharma Dorje exist?"

The monkey-man's eyebrows went up, causing lines on his forehead. "Of course! I just passed him on the path. He was going upwards, I was going downwards! What a silly question!"

"Today, I mean," said the man called Chamba. "Does he exist today? For you.... ?"

Drelhu shook his head and shifted from foot to foot. "He exists every day! Today, yesterday, and tomorrow! For everyone!"

The monkey-man was irritated.

"Don't be angry...I need ... sometimes you ... well..."

"What?" snapped the broad flat mask, glaring at him.

"Does he," so-called Chamba said, "always seem the same?"

"He is always the same!" returned the other.

“I ... mean... look ... LOOK the same!"

Drelhu turned away, smiling, silent for a moment. Then, turning to so-called Chamba, his eyes softening, he said, "Things always look differently, Chamba. They never look the same..."

"Ah," he said, feeling that he almost understood.

"Let ud forget about this now. Forget about it! All this about existing and non-existing, present or vanishing people..."

"But then," frowned the man Drelhu called Chamba, "How do you know about vanishing ... people? Did I tell you?"

Drelhu looked out the window, down to where the village had been. "This is the end of the matter. Enough!"

He knew he could pursue it no further.


"Geshe-la?" he asked.

"Yes?" the grey-green eyes answered.

"Can Dorje Drelhu fly?"

The grey-green eyes looked away.

"Why do you ask?"

"I saw him fly!" answered the man named Chamba.

The grey-green eyes looked at him.

"Then why do you ask?"


"Drelhu?" he asked.

"Yes?" the broad grimacing mask answered.

"Can you fly?"

The monkey-man looked away.

"Why do you ask?"

"I saw you fly!" answered the man named Chamba.

The dark eyes looked at him.

"Then why do you ask?"


"Sri Khatvanga?" asked Chamba. "Yes?" the dark eyes answered. "Can you fly?" The black magician looked away. "Why do you ask?" "I wish to fly!" answered the man named Chamba. The dark eyes looked at him. "Perhaps."



"Yes?" answered Chamba.

"Have you learned to eat fire yet?"


"Too bad! " the other laughed.

"Ha Ha hahahah!"


"Chainba! " the dark eyes said.


"Listen carefully


"Reach to the red-hot coals, slowly, with your index finger and thumb....”

"Yes," answered the other, "I am......"

"Do not touch them!"


"Now.......Get closer"


"Do not touch them, until I tell you!"



Eyes. Eyes. Coals.


Eyes. Eyes.

"Ouch! And he pulled away his hand.

The dark eyes scowled. "I did not tell you ... to touch them! " growled Drelhu.

He said nothing, trying to cool the blister with his mouth.

He was angry and confused.

"What is going on?" he thought.

"What am I doing?"


Eventually Chamba was able to pick up the hot embers. He held them before his face, studied them by turning them, this way and that. Afterwards, he put them back with their companions. "Good," said the black magician.


"I must be nuts, completely nuts," the man called Dorje Chamba muttered to himself. "It certainly seems real enough.....genuine... actual! But..."

He propped himself up on an elbow and stared out the window. "...that can't be an illusion! It's more real than a ... movie!"

He stared at Drelhu high above, arms outstretched.

"Look at this!" called Drelhu faintly.

And he watched as Drelhu curled himself into a ball and plummetted towards the ground. He gasped in fear for his friend. But it was unnecessary, for at the last moment, arms and legs spread-eagled and the flying monkey-man pulled up. He zoomed by the window, laughing.

"Ha Ha hahahah!"

"Crazy! What a crazy ... elder brother!"

"What's that?" Dorje Chamba asked.

Drelhu grinned from ear to ear.

"The purpose of my flight ... " he said, showing the other a tan-colored egg.

"I thought you were just showing me..." started the man named Chamba.

"No, no! Do not even think it!" interrupted Drelhu. "Do not say it!"


"I never fly-except for a purpose of importance!"

"Oh," Chamba smiled to himself,"I see ... Yes, of course."


Drelhu no longer tried to hide his journeys. He saw him flying every day, going here, going there.

Sometimes he went south towards the ravine, returning with wood

for the fire. other times he flew up to the gompa, carrying a pot of tea for the lama.

He saw this almost incidentally after a while. Most of the time he tried to memorize the diagrams Drelhu had laid out for him, taken from a loose-leaf manuscript with blue pages. The drawings were in lines of gold.

"Theyare so ... pleasing..." he thought, "to look upon..."

Drelhu came and went. Sometimes walking, sometimes flying. He observed the plunges into space, with their somersaults, swoops and dives with an increasingly mild reaction and almost disinterested detachment.

"If I'm nuts," he thought, in rare moments of doubt, "then it certainly is painless and as entertaining as a circus, better than pink elephants!"

"Ha ha hahahah!"


A deep blue.

A golden line, moving, right, left, right, left ... making the delineation of a place, a palace.

Lines making..

Circle within circle.

Intersecting triangle within intersecting triangle within....

In the center...!

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