A Serpent in the Gears

Professora Lundqvist insisted on taking the bones to the captain, and borrowed me for the purpose. I piled the serpent’s jawbone on her tank, secured the lesser fangs to her braking mechanism, and accompanied her up to the lift. Lundqvist, lacking either an andropter or the torso around which to fasten one, could not venture to the open decks, and thus we were limited to the helm room.

After all, no one noticed a valet, and if some codes were childishly easy to crack, that was hardly my fault.

Niddy’s pale corpse lay naked on the table. Her eyes were held shut by river-worn pebbles rather than the coins I’d placed before I left. The dress that should have graced the corpse, Niddy’s best, was on Trilla. Though it shamed me that my sister’s body was shown such dishonor before strangers, it didn’t hurt as it might have. If justice prevailed, that dress would be all the benefit Trilla’s treachery brought her.

The following midmorning, Trilla arrived in the village wailing that my Niddy was dead.
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The Manufactory

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We figured we’d get rich once corpses became rare and valuable resources again.