Mark Spain Encore
stared at them. He knew he'd never be able to understand them in a hundred years.
The frost crumbled in the warmer air.
The equations over.
'I expect you can see the holes in his armour, right?' said Cuddy.
C. M. O. T. Dibbler was a survivor. In the same way that rodents and insects can sense an earthquake ahead of the first tremors, so he could tell if something big was narrowed as they were carried on down the wall and across the floor to where the troll had been sitting, until they became just a few expressions that appeared to move and sparkle with a life of their own. This was maths without numbers, pure as lightning.They narrowed to a point, and at the point was just the very simple symbol: '='.'Equals what?' said Cuddy. 'Equals what?'The frost collapsed.Cuddy went outside. Detritus was now sitting in a puddle of water, surrounded by a crowd of human onlookers.'Can't one of you get him a blanket or something?' he said.A very fat man said, 'Huh? Who'd use a blanket after it had been on a troll?''Hah, yes, good point,' said Cuddy. He glanced at the five holes in Detritus' breastplate. They were at about head height, for a dwarf. 'Could you come over here for a moment, please?'The man grinned at his friends, and sauntered
Apr 29, 2009
Mark Spain Encore
Apr 28, 2009
Unknown Artist Venice Grand Canal
crimes, it was just that the crimes they committed tended to be so far above the normal level of criminality that they were beyond the turning it over and over in his fingers.
'The current ethnic problem.'
'Are we having one?'
'Well, yes . . . Look at Quarry Lane. There's fighting there every night!'
'And they have absolutely no concept of religion!'reach of men with bad boots and rusting mail. Owning a hundred slum properties wasn't a crime, although living in one was, almost; Being an Assassin – the Guild never actually said so, but an important qualification was being the son or daughter of a gentleman – wasn't a crime. If you had enough money, you could hardly commit crimes at all. You just perpetrated amusing little peccadilloes.'And now everywhere you look it's uppity dwarfs and trolls and rude people,' said Lady Selachii. 'There's more dwarfs in Ankh-Morpork now than there are in any of their own cities, or whatever they call their holes.''What do you think, captain?' said the Duke of Eorle.'Hmm?' Captain Vimes picked up a grape and started
Apr 27, 2009
in with you, we'll holler if we need 'em back.'
'You're a toff, Mr Colon,' had it for thousands of years," ' said Carrot. And he said, "that's right, so it has antique value".'
'Poor old chap,' said Sergeant Colon. 'OK. What else have we got. . . yes, Carrot?'
'Now, they've got to take the King's Shilling,' said Carrot.
'Right. Yes. OK.' Colon fished in his pocket, and took out three sequin-sized Ankh-Morpork dollars, which had about the gold content of seawater. He tossed them one at a time to the recruits.
'This is called the King's Shilling,' he said, glancing at Carrot. 'Dunno why. You said Here'n'now, wandering down the steps to the cells.Colon shook his head.'Worst thief in the world,' he said.'He doesn't look that good,' said Angua.'No, I mean the worst,' said Colon. 'As in "not good at it".''Remember when he was going to go all the way up to Dunmanifestin to steal the Secret of Fire from the gods?' said Nobby.'And I said "but we've got it, Here'n'now, we've
Apr 24, 2009
Pop art trane in red
Gentry on horseback, and I could hear ‘em laughing, and we
got home and Eva said to put a horseshoe on the door and—“
“What about the king?”
“Dunno, miss. Last I remember, he was laughin’ at Thatcher in his straw wig.”
“And Nanny Ogg and Granny Weatherwax? What hap-pened to them?”
“Dunno, miss. Don’t remember seein’ ‘em, but there was
people runnin’ everywhere—“
“And where was all this?”
Magrat, Magrat’s not to know about this sort of thing. The Dancers? Right.”
“It wasn’t us, miss! It was only make-believe!”
She unbolted the door again.
“Where’re you going, miss?” said Weaver, who was not a competitor in the All-Lancre Uptake Stakes.
“Where d’you think?”
“But, miss, you can’t take iron—“
Magrat slammed the door. Then
Apr 22, 2009
Rembrandt Christ On The Cross
Magrat went in.
Rooms in the castle could hardly be said to belong to
anyone in any case. They’d had too many occupants over the
centuries. The very atmosphere was the equivalent of those
walls scattered It hadn’t worked.
There was the Great Bed of Lancre, which was said to be able to sleep a dozen people, although in what circum-stances and why it should be necessary history had never made clear. It was huge and made of oak.
It was also, very clearly, unslept in.with outbreaks of drawing-pin holes where last term’s occupants hung the posters of rock groups long disbanded. You couldn’t stamp your personality on that stone. It stamped back harder.For Magrat, stepping into a man’s bedroom was like an explorer stepping on to that part of the map marked Here Be Dragons.And it wasn’t exactly what it ought to have been.Verence had arrived at the bedroom concept fairly late in life. When he was a boy, the entire family slept on straw in the cottage attic. As an apprentice in the Guild of Joculators, he’d slept on a pallet in a long dormitory of other sad, beaten young men. When he was a fully fledged Fool he’d slept, by tradition, curled up in front of his master’s door. Suddenly, at a later age than is usual, he’d been intro-duced to the notion of soft mattresses.And now Magrat was privy to the big secret.
Apr 21, 2009
always left a window open all night in case he wanted to go out and disembowel something, bless him.
Well, well. Elves. (you liked the color of blood. It got so people didn’t even dare talk openly about the bastards.
You said: The Shining Ones. You said: The Fair Folk. And you spat, and touched iron. But generations later, you forgot about the spitting and the iron, and you forgot why you used those names for them, and you remembered only that they were beautiful.
Yes, there’d been a lot of witches in them days. Too many women found an empty cradleThey couldn’t hear you say the word inside your head, anyway. At least, not unless they were real close.) She really thought they’d seen the last of them. How long was it, now? Must be hundreds and hundreds of years, maybe thousands. Witches didn’t like to talk about it, because they’d made a big mistake about the elves. They’d seen through the buggers in the end, of course, but it had been a close thing. And there’d been a lot of witches in those days. They’d been able to stop them at every turn, make life in this world too hot for them. Fought them with iron. Nothing elvish could stand iron. It blinded them, or something. Blinded them all over.There weren’t many witches now. Not proper witches. More of a problem, though, was that people didn’t seem to be able to remember what it was like with the elves around. Life was certainly more interesting then, but usually because it was shorter. And it was more colorful, if
Apr 20, 2009
,” said the Dean. “Just the thing for him.
Countryside. Trees. And . .. and ... trees.”
“Mountain air,” said the Dean.
“Only when he’s had a bath.”
Ridcully rubbed his beard. In fact he quite liked the Librarian, who never argued with him and always kept him-self in shape, even if that shape was a pear shape. It was the right shape for an orang-utan.
The thing about the Librarian was that no one noticed he was an orang-utan anymore, unless a visitor to the University happened to point it out. In which case someone would say, “Oh, yes. Some kind of magical accident,” said the Lecturer in Recent Runes.“Yes, he’s been looking peaky lately,” said the Reader in Invisible Writings.“It’d be a real treat for him,” said the Lecturer in Recent Runes.“Home away from home, I expect,” said the Dean.“Trees all over the place.”They all looked expectantly at the Archchancellor.“He doesn’t wear clothes,” said Ridcully. “And he goes ‘ook’ all the time.”38I.OR08 ft^fO LftQfEQ“He does wear the old green robe thing
Apr 17, 2009
soon enough would be her own ...
And then she looked out of the window.
Nanny Ogg balanced carefully on a stool and ran a finger along the top of the dresser. Then she inspected the finger. It was spotless.
“Hummph,” might as well resign herself to a life of mental torture and nameless domestic servitude.
Nanny Ogg never did any housework herself, but she was the cause of housework in other people.
She got down from the stool and beamed at them.
“You kept the place quite nice,” she said. “Well done.”
Her smile faded.she said. “Seems to be moderately clean.”The daughters-in-law shivered with relief.“So far,” Nanny added.The three young women drew together in their mute terror.Her relationship with her daughters-in-law was the only stain on Nanny Ogg’s otherwise amiable character. Sons-in-law were different—she could remember their names, even their birthdays, and they joined the family like overgrown chicks creeping under the wings of a broody bantam. And grandchildren were treasures, every one. But any woman incautious enough to marry an Ogg son
Apr 16, 2009
>Simony had told Urn he'd agreed to this. He couldn't quite remember doing so. The sergeant knew a way into the Citadel, that was sensible. And Urn knew about hydraulics. Fine. Now he was walking through these dry tunnels with his toolbelt inserted it between the grille and the stonework. Give me a foot of good steel and a wall to brace . . . my . . . foot . . . against-the grille ground forward and then popped out with a leaden sound-and I can change the world . . .
He stepped inside the long, dark, damp room, and gave a whistle of admiration.
No one had done any maintenance for-well, for as long as it took iron hinges to become a mass of crumbling rust-but all this still worked?
He looked up at lead and iron buckets bigger than he wasclinking. There was a logical connection, but it had been made by someone else.Fergmen turned a corner and stopped by a large grille, which stretched from floor to ceiling. It was very rusty. It might once have been a door-there was a suggestion of hinges, rusted into the stone. Urn peered through the bars. Beyond, in the gloom, there were pipes."Eureka," he said."Going to have a bath, then?" said Fergmen."Just keep watch."Urn selected a short crowbar from his belt and
Apr 15, 2009
Paul Klee Fire in the Evening
What do you mean, and then what?"
Brutha looked out glumly at the darkening courtyard.
"Believe in the Great God Om or be stricken with thunderbolts," he said.
"Sounds good to me."
"Is that how it always has to be?"
The last rays of the sun glinted off the statue in the center of the courtyard. It was vaguely feminine. There was a penguin perched on one shoulder.
"Patina, Goddess of Wisdom," said Brutha. "The one with a penguin. Why a penguin?"
"Can't imagine," little stroll. We will take the evening air."
"You have enjoyed your visit to Ephebe."
Vorbis seldom asked a question if a statement would do.said Om hurriedly."Nothing wise about penguins, is there?""Shouldn't think so. Unless you count the fact that you don't get them in Omnia. Pretty wise of them.""Brutha!""That's Vorbis," said Brutha, standing up. "Shall I leave you here?""Yes. There's still some melon. I mean loaf."Brutha wandered out into the dusk.Vorbis was sitting on a bench under a tree, as still as a statue in the shadows.Certainty, Brutha thought. I used to be certain. Now I'm not so sure."Ah, Brutha. You will accompany me on a
"It has been . . . interesting."
Vorbis put one hand on Brutha's shoulder and used the other to haul himself
Apr 14, 2009
never chose anyone," said Om. "They chose themselves."
"If you're it was wicked to ask, but he wanted to know what the memory was. Anyway, could it be wicked? If the God was sitting there talking to you, could you say anything truly wicked?
Face to face? Somehow, that didn't seem so bad as saying something wicked when he was up on a cloud or something.
"As far as I can recall," said Om, "I'd intended to be a big
Thomas Kinkade NASCAR THUNDER
really Om, stop being a tortoise.""I told you, I can't. You think I haven't tried? Three years! Most of that time I thought I was a tortoise.""Then perhaps you were. Maybe you're just a tortoise who thinks he's a god.""Nah. Don't try philosophy again. Start thinking like that and you end up thinking maybe you're just a butterfly dreaming it's a whelk or something. No. One day all I had on my mind was the amount of walking necessary to get to the nearest plant with decent lowgrowing leaves, the next . . . I had all this memory filling up my head. Three years before the shell. No, don't you tell me I'm a tortoise with big ideas."Brutha hesitated. He knew
wasn't just the seasickness. He didn't know where he was. And Brutha had always known where he was. Where he was, and the existence of Om, had been the only two certainties in his life.
It was Out of contact with the ground, on the mutable surface of the sea, the thread flapped loose.
In his box, Om tossed and shook to Brutha's motion as Brutha staggered across the moving deck and reached the rail.
To anyone except the novice, the boat was clipping through the waves
something he shared with tortoises. Watch any tortoise walking, and periodically it will stop while it files away the memories of the journey so far. Not for nothing, elsewhere in the multiverse, are the little traveling devices controlled by electric thinking-engines called "turtles."Brutha knew where he was by remembering where he had been-by the unconscious counting of footsteps and the noting of landmarks. Somewhere inside his head was a thread of memory which, if you had wired it directly to whatever controlled his feet, would cause Brutha to amble back through the little pathways of his life all the way to the place he was born.
Apr 13, 2009
noise. The staff was rolling back towards Coin, who looked down at it in horror.
Pick me up.
'You don't have to,' said Rincewind again.
You cannot resist me. You cannot defeat yourself, said the staff.
Coin reached out very slowly, and picked it up.
Rincewind glanced at his sock. It was a stub of burnt wool, its brief career as a weapon of war having sent it beyond the Without me, who would there be to tell you what to do?
'That is true,' said Coin slowly.
See what you have achieved.
Coin stared slowly around at the frightened faces.
'I am seeing,' he said.help of any darning needle.Now kill him.Rincewind held his breath. The watching wizards held their breath. Even Death, who had nothing to hold but his scythe, held it tensely.'No,' said Coin.You know what happens to boys who are bad.Rincewind saw the sourcerer's face go pale.The staff's voice changed. Now it wheedled.
Apr 10, 2009
rocking the Luggage managed to get most of its feet pointing the right way, and stood doing a complicated slow-motion jig to keep as few of them on the burning sand as possible.
It wasn't lost. It always knew exactly where it was. It was always here.
It was just thatto poison a small country.
If there is one thing a travel accessory needs more than anything else, it is someone to belong to. The Luggage set off unsteadily across the scorching sand, full of hope.
'I don't think we've got time for introductions,' said Rincewind, as a distant part of the palace collapsed with a thump that vibrated the floor. 'It's time we everywhere else seemed to have been temporarily mislaid.After some deliberation the Luggage turned and walked very slowly, into a boulder.It backed away and sat down, rather puzzled. It felt as though it had been stuffed with hot feathers, and it was dimly aware of the benefits of shade and a nice cool drink.After a few false starts it walked to the top of a nearby sand dune, which gave it an unrivalled view of hundreds of other dunes.Deep in its heartwood the Luggage was troubled. It had been spurned. It had been told to go away. It had been rejected. It had also drunk enough orakh
Apr 9, 2009
time Conina spoke, that someone was running hot steel into his spine.
He glanced down at the Luggage, tramping stoically alongside him, and recognised the symptoms.
'Not you, too?' he said.
Possibly it that she banged an ankle on it.
'Push off,' she snapped, and kicked it again, this time on purpose.
Insofar as the Luggage ever had an expression, it looked at her in shocked betrayal.
The pavilion ahead of them was an ornate onion-shaped dome, studded with precious stones and supported on four pillars. Its interior was a mass of cushions on which lay a rather fat, middle-was only the play of sunlight on the Luggage's battered lid, but it was just possible that for an instant it looked redder than usual.Of course, sapient pearwood has this sort of weird mental link with its owner ... Rincewind shook his head. Still, it'd explain why the thing wasn't its normal malignant self.'It'd never work,' he said. 'I mean, she's a female and you're a, well, you're a-’ He paused. 'Well, whatever you are, you're of the wooden persuasion. It'd never work. People would talk.'He turned and glared at the black-robed guards behind him.'I don't know what you're looking at,' he said severely.The Luggage sidled over to Conina, following her so closely
Apr 8, 2009
glowed golden, from the inside. For the first time in what, for want of any better word, must be called his life, Death found himself looking at a stare that he found hard to return. The eyes seemed to be focused on a point several inches In the staff.
Death leaned on his scythe and sighed.
FOOLISH. HOW EASILY COULD I CUT YOU LOOSE.
Not without destroying the staff, said the voice of Ipslore, and it seemed to Death that there was a new, thick, exultant quality to it. And now the child has accepted the staff you cannot destroy it without destroying him. And that you cannot do without upsetting destiny. My last magic. Rather neat, l feel.inside his skull.I did not mean for that to happen, said the voice of Ipslore, from out of the empty air. Is he harmed?No. Death tore his gaze away from that fresh, knowing smile. HE CONTAINED THE POWER. HE IS A SOURCERER: NO DOUBT HE WILL SURVIVE MUCH WORSE. AND NOW -YOU WILL COME WITH ME.No.YES. YOU ARE DEAD, YOU SEE. Death looked around for Ipslore's wavering shade, and failed to find it. WHERE ARE YOU?
Apr 7, 2009
who’ll listen.” Granny Weatherwax’s eyes seemed to lose their focus.
“When you’re lonely, and people around you seem too stupid for words, and the world is full of secrets that no one’ll tell you ... “
“Are you reading my mind?”
“Yours?” Granny’s attention snapped back, and her voice lost its distant quality. “Hah! Flowers and suchlike. Dancing about without yer drawers on. Mucking about with cards and bits of string. And it worked, I expect. She gave Queen slightly ahead. Every witch knew her, or the shape of her.
Diamanda tripped and fell, and then managed to bring herself up to a kneeling position.
The Queen’s horse whinnied.
“Kneel before your Queen, you,” said the elf. She was wearing red, with a copper crown in her hair.
“Shan’t. Won’t,” said Granny Weatherwax.
“You are in my kingdom, woman,” said the Queen. “You do not come or go without the leave of me. You will kneel!”
“I come and go without the leave of anyone
Apr 6, 2009
building behind him, surrounded by crowds of people. It was squat and clung to the ground in a strangely animal Incendiary Surprise, perhaps?’ this was the Bursar’s voice. ‘Burn it out, it’s the best way -‘ ‘Yeah? Yeah? And what do you know about military tactics? You can’t even say “yo” properly!’
Ridcully gripped the sides of the trolley.
‘Would anyone mind tellin’ me,’ he said, ‘what the - what the heck is goin’ on?’
Ludmilla pushed her way through the members of the Fresh Start Club. ‘You’ve got to stop them, Archchancellor!’ she said. ‘They’re talking about destroying the big shop!’way, as if it might be possible to lift up a wing of the building and hear the pop-pop-pop of suckers letting go.Light streamed out of it, and steam curled out of its doors.‘Ridcully’s woken up!’More faces appeared. Ridcully thought: it’s not Soul Cake Night, so they’re not wearing masks. Oh, blast.he heard the Dean say, ‘I vote we work ?lp? Herpetty’s Seismic Reorganiser and lob it through the door. No more problem.’ ‘No! We’re too close to the city walls! We just need to drop Quondum’s Attractive Point in the right place -‘ ‘Or Sumpjumper’s
Apr 3, 2009
they sat in a row under the hedge, putting off the moment when they’d need to start work again. A glugging noise came from the end of the row.
‘It’s not WHEN HE BECOMES INADVERTENTLY INEBRIATED. ‘Cor,’ said Spigot. Bill Door took a long swig.
‘And I saw swallows flying low,’ said Duke.’And partridges are heading for the woods. And there’s a lot of big snails about. And -‘ ‘I don’t reckon any of them buggers knows the first thing about meteorology,’ said Spigot. ‘l reckon you goes around telling ‘em. Eh, lads? Big storm comin’, Mr Spider, so get on and do somethin’ folklorish.’
Bill Door took another drink.been a bad old summer, then,’ said Spigot. ‘And good harvest weather for a change.’‘Ah . . . many a slip ‘twixt dress and drawers,’ said Duke.’Last night I saw a spider spinnin’ its web backwards. That’s a sure sign there’s going to be a dretful storm.’‘Don’t see how spiders know things like that.’Gabby Wheels passed a big earthenware jug to Bill Door. Something sloshed.WHAT IS THIS?‘Apple juice,’ said Spigot. The others laughed.AH, said Bill Door. STRONG DISTILLED SPIRITS, GIVEN HUMOROUSLY TO THE UNSUSPECTING NEWCOMER, THUS TO AFFORD SIMPLE AMUSEMENT
Apr 1, 2009
. . . let us go.
Azrael watched them skim away.
It is hard to fathom the thoughts of a creature so big that, in real space, his length would be measured only in terms of the speed of light. But he turned his enormous bulk and, with eyes that stars could be lost in, sought among the myriad worlds for a flat one.
On the back of a turtle. The Discworld - world and mirror of worlds. It sounded interesting. And, in his prison of a billion years, Azrael was bored.
And this the scene . . .
And now add the sharp clicking of bone on stone, getting closer. A dark shape crosses the field of vision and moves up the endless shelves of sibilant glassware. Click, click. Here’s a glass with the top bulb nearly empty. Bone fingers rise and reach out. Select. And another. Select. And more. Many, many more. Select, Select.
It’s all in a day’s work. Or it would be, if days existed here.is the room where the future pours into the past via the pinch of the now.Timers line the walls. Not hour-glasses, although they have the same shape. Not egg-timers, such as you might bu as a souvenir attached to a small board with the name of the holiday resort of your choice jauntily inscribed on it by someone with the same sense of style as a jelly doughnut. It’s not even sand in there. It’s seconds, endlessly turning the maybe into the was. And every lifetimer has a name on it. And the room is full of the soft hissing of people living. Picture
Click, click, a~, the dark shape moves patiently along