A Tale for the Modern Attention Span
Look at her there, the late afternoon sun streaming through the grimy window of her motel room as she spreads every bit of money she possesses across the greasy bed sheets and counts it. The people from the front desk have just called to tell her she’s going to have to pay for another night if she doesn’t leave soon—but no matter how many times she counts the money, it’s not enough (even at Daedalus Bolt-discount rates).
It is, however, enough to pay for something.
I can use this money to get a cab back to stately Bolt Manor. I can go there and plead with Steel for mercy. Surely he wouldn’t send away a woman who has no money and is pregnant with his niece or nephew.
Oh, what am I thinking? There’s no way I can return to Steel. Even if he did take me back, how long would it be before I was miserable again?
At this point—as with every time she’s had this debate in the last two weeks—Charity is overwhelmed by emotion and begins to weep. She wishes she could avoid such hysteria (as she knows that stress is bad for her unborn baby), but she can’t help it. Oh Daedalus, where are you? Why have you forsaken me? Why have you left me to rot in this motel? I’m so lonely. I’m so alone. I’m so frightened.
But wait, she thinks, it’s ridiculous to blame Daedalus. He would never desert me. He promised he would take care of everything and I know he would—if he could. Surely Steel is behind this. Steel has had him killed. And I expect that same person to take pity on me? ... Oh, what am I going to do?
Charity flings herself across the bed in despair. After only a few seconds though, she sits up and tries to restore order to her face by wiping away the tears and running her fingers through her hair. Rational thinking is required here, not panic. I must review my options.
With that Charity gets up and walks across the well-worn carpet to the well-worn dresser and takes hold of the now well-worn strip of paper across which Daedalus had scribbled an address. “If there’s any trouble,” he told her, “go to this address.”
Every time she’s had this debate in the past, it's ended with her resolving to put her faith in Daedalus’s judgement. But that was then, that was in theory. Now her money is truly gone, and the question is whether she will put theory into practice, or choose instead to seek sanctuary at stately Bolt Manor.
Suddenly, with conviction, Charity gathers the few things she’d brought with her, puts them in her small bag, calls the front desk and asks them to order her a cab.
Continue Reading: Episode 73: The Kindness of Strangers and Possible Dangers