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Baby in the storm

Last night was one of those Phoenix dust and wind storms where the rain that's supposed to hit the ground goes back up because it's too damn hot, and the trees are being ripped about by the wind and you can hardly breathe for the damp and the dust.

I pushed my way home from the bus stop and my encounter with my bondmate. As I neared my own door, I saw a long pale cat cowering near the pool. At first I thought it was the little kitten, but as I got closer, I recognized it as an older cat I usually saw sprawled out on the inside of the windowsill of a nearby apartment. She wove around, clearly desperate to get inside.

I tapped the knocker gently twice.
"Who is it?"
"Is this your cat out here?"
The door opened.
"Baby, get in here!"
Baby hesitated at the doorway. I reached down and shooed her in.

I nodded to Baby's humans and went on my way.
Gone away, gone ahead,
Echoes roll unanswered.
Empty, open, dusty, dead.
Why have all the Weyrfolk fled?

Where have dragons gone together
Leaving weyrs to wind and weather,
Setting herdbeasts free of tether;
Gone, our safeguards, gone, but whither?

Have they flown to some new weyr
Where cruel Threads some others fear?
Are they worlds away from here?
Why, oh why the empty weyr?

-- "The Question Song", Anne McCaffrey
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