To keep his attention, she repeated, "Brain?" He looked at her impatiently. Her voice was soft as her eyes wandered. "Promise me, if you meet them, at Glastonbury, promise me you'll tell me, what they say, about the Ages of Man. Promise me?"


Frishta dropped her hand in disappointment. "Brian?"

"What?" Brian was abrupt.

"Where will it all end, the Ages, Man?"


Brian smiled. He closed his fingers to signify Om, and his eyes. "The final Age of Man shall be Scorpio. The scorpion shall dance in the red desert, and shall sting itself to death." Brian closed his eyes more tightly, and was lost.

Frishta looked at her hands. She began to sing.


WHAT I LIKE about London is St. James Park. There couldn't be a London without St. James Park."

"What if they dropped an atom bomb and blew St. James Park away? Would you like London then?"

"They couldn't. They'd blow London away, too. There couldn't be a London without St. James Park."

"What if you changed your mind? Would you like London then?"

His face blanked at the question. He answered, mildly offended, "Then it wouldn't matter, or course, whatever they did to St. James Park." He looked away, up the street, determinedly, and sped his pace. They stopped talking, and puffed cold air with their paces. The street was crusted stop lights and neon glinting from gritty snow and ice broken jagged in gutter puddles, cracked ice over dark water and bits of refuse drowned below, and sometimes new ice on the water, a shimmer, ice thin as air, Cold as four in the morning in the street with wind.

"Damned cold."

"Quite," said Sitvar, still offended. A pause.