Night came about me instantly as I pulled the round inn door closed and set off briskly toward the commons. The night was cool, eager, all eletrical jubilant wildness; too young it seemed for cruelty. It freed the multiplicities of the river and the trees, the fields and the sky, wove them to touch me in quick little sweeps, little pushes. 
        There were lamps in the houses, and firelight, but no links lighting anyone on the road, and no shadows moved about the domes as I cut across the commons. I could see the blue light which pulsed once and knew that it was the com's message light.
         I swung up and slipped into the rider's seat punching on the com. 
         Complex Chief Dob appeared. Working under her I had observed she was adept, knowledgeable and creative. She smiled and her eyes held the kindness with which, along with understanding and patience, she viewed Eoeun, vessels, and outlanders. I had never seen Dob at a loss. 
         She spoke in her quiet slightly slurred voice, Ince, I have hailed you several times this shift but received no response. Im transmitting this now as I go off-duty. Theoretically, Dobs smile spread. We had a small cutter come in today, from Hextra. The rider had received among her general messages a quest listing. Its been through several relays and as a result, as I'm sure you know, many transfer listings, so I have no way to assess its accuracy.