Monday, October 08, 2012

Landfall ( II )

Landfall ( II )
(Continued from Landfall ( I ); scroll down to read.)


"Wot you mean 'wot'? Showed us, you know, Lan'fall." 

Ooplo was not in the mood for games. He leveled a thick finger at the farmzod. "Do you even know what that word means, rot-thumbs?"

The farmzod hesitated. Varantz shook his head and sighed.
Ooplo tried a different tack. "Alright, that thing they showed you on the Big-panel -- what did it look like? Was it square, was it triang—"

"No, no! Not sq-square. 'Twere like a wot's-it; like a, ..you know, like a like a like a like a like a...."

Varantz thumped the farmod on the back to stop his skipping.

"Plate!! Like a plate; 'at's it." The little farmzod was grinning and wagging his head up and down. He seemed to get caught up in the motion and began to giggle vacantly as his movements became more and more exaggerated.

Ooplo snapped his fingers in the farmzod's face. "Stop it. A plate? As in a round plate? Like the kind you eat on?"

"A wot?"

"A rou—"

"Oy, yes!! Round it were! Round like a round plate!!"

"Okay, so, a circle," Ooplo said. "What color was it?"

"It were wot's-it; blue wi' a tiny bit o' white near the top an' bottom, it were. Blue an' white, yes."

Varantz gasped. "Well I'll be fu—"

Ooplo silenced him with a cautionary glare. The younger mechand pursed his lips and flared his nostrils. His face had gone pale.

The farmzod frowned and scratched his head, apparently trying to figure out what he was missing. Varantz sat rigid. Just then Ooplo chuckled.

"Bah, fun's over. Let's not kid the little fellow anymore!" he said, masking his excitement with a toothy grin and winking at Varantz. He turned back to the farmzod. "We were just messin' with ya, buddy! Blue and white you said, yeah?"

The farmzod nodded.

"Okay, well, blue and white plates are nothing to worry about! It's just a logo! A pretty design to look at, that's all; like a fancy floor!"

The farmzod tilted his head, his eyes darting back and forth between the two mechands as if wary of being tricked.

"It's true," Ooplo continued. "See, Landfall, my little food-growing friend, is just another word for the End of the Year Feast!" He smiled and Varantz forced himself out of his shock, grunting in agreement.

"Ah.... I... right. Right! 'At's wot I was sayin' in th' first place, only yous weren't list'nin'! I knew wot it was, I did; I was just teasin' you lot! Hahaha!!" The farmzod jumped up and down, squirming in his loose-fitting worksuit.

Ooplo and Varantz put on another good laugh then, but as soon as they could they shifted the conversation to safer topics. Eventually the warning bell sounded, and the scrawny little farmzod bounced happily off toward the elevator shaft to return to his work up in the growfields.

Ooplo and Varantz made their way back to their post, both deep in thought. Before they parted ways Ooplo put a hand on his friend's shoulder and spoke into his ear so quietly that Varantz barely heard him.

"If the shipmasters have indeed found a planet that can support life, this could be our one and only chance. We need to get the word out."

Varantz nodded solemnly. "Yes. Yes we do. And you know what? I'm tired of being a slave. You?"

"You know it, brother."


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