“What is it?” Lor asked, meaning, “What does it do?”
“It brings the world closer,” she answered. “Look inside it.”
She extended it for him and he peered through the fat end, instantly spying a tiny Centaur (Clorielle) in the viewfinder. She informed Lor that he was peering through the wrong end. He nonchalantly reversed it and looked inside a second time.
Therein, he spied her left eye. It was so enormous that he glanced up from the looking glass to verify that her eyeball was not, in fact, the size of the moon. Then, he warily peered back into it a third and final time.
He focused on something behind her… the snowy peak of the mountain rising out of the Green Forest. According to legend, it was spring eternal in Etzalini. According to Lobi’s legends perhaps! Lor thought.
His wandering scope found Clorielle again. Her violet-tinged irises became his horizontal axis, her small nose, his vertical. Better calibrated, Lor explored her cherry lips, her angular chin, her slender neck, her young chest … ”
“Hey!” she barked, turning away from his probing eye.
“Sorry,” he said, his face bright red.
Lor closed the retractable oddity, not sure if it had, in the final analysis, brought the world closer, or pushed it further away. He sought solace in the darkening western sky, never having wished for the crescent moon to wax with greater haste, for her glow to slice through the very night, taking his mind off the touchy four-hooved menace, this child named Clorielle. (p. 195-96, After Antarctica)
All illustrations © 2014-15 Alexander Nixon