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The Limp

Dreamed 1986/7/18 by Chris Wayan

I work in an architectural firm in London, but I plan to quit. The boss's son is disappointed. I'll miss him, though not his dad, who's a bit stuffy. I say "Well, I'm kinda relieved to be rid of this job... now I can go out and really see London as I originally intended when I came here. Come out tonight, let's have a night on the town. I'll stand you a drink in your favorite spot."

He says "You're not inviting your workmates too, then?"

"Yes, why not?" I say.

"Well... they won't want to go if I go." says the son. "They don't like to be seen with me, I think."

I'm shocked and he adds, "Oh, I understand--going out drinking and dancing with a cripple is embarrassing... not that I hold them back logistically, but seeing one member of our group with a crutch... it scares off the girls I guess."

I think he's dead wrong. I doubt they even noticed his slight limp. They may avoid him because he's the boss's son... or it could be simple bigotry. He's gentle, small, even delicate... but he IS a centasaur! Those four legs, the equine torso part furred, part scaly, and that arching, toothy saurian head with a bright crest or frill... he's quite beautiful in his way. But a shock the first time, even for cosmopolitan London. I think they just don't want to be seen with a monster!

Portrait of my boss's son, a saurian centaur, dark, with a reddish crest, using a cane due to a slight limp; he stands looking out the firm's window in London.
I'm unsure if I should tell him my suspicions, but I'm sure it's not the limp. With three sound legs, he gets around quite well--after all, it's more than any of them have. He doesn't even USE a crutch! He just showed me his new walking stick last week: an impressive staff, functional but no mere crutch. With it, he looks like the Prince of Aldebaran. And it's wonderfully suited for whacking the heads of racists. If he ever notices.

He says, brightening, "I'll come anyway."

Suddenly I feel happy. Free in London, with a buddy who'll attract everyone's eyes... and even if he scares half the women on Earth, the other half will be the fun ones!

Such a burst of energy, anticipating! I didn't realize how tired I was, of working on the old man's plans...

NOTES ON WAKING



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