GC: 3X4CTLY HOW LONG H4V3 YOU 4LL B33N L1V1NG 1N DR34M BUBBL3S? GC: OR 1 M34N... GC: NOT L1V1NG AG: It has 8een a very long time. AG: So long, time has 8een stripped of the meaning it never really had in the first place. AG: It doesn't really pass in the same way it does when you're alive. Concepts like "now" and "how long" are figures of speech used to make communication simpler. AG: I've quit trying to give expression to the elusive temporal properties of this place. It's easier staying conversational. AG: 8ut I will say that 8eing here "for so long" lends itself to a certain detachment from what you see. Otherwise, monitoring the atrocities stemming from our failure wouldn't 8e much fun. GC: DO YOU M1SS YOUR WORLD 4S MUCH 4S 1 DO? AG: Yes, sometimes. AG: 8ut missing it usually invites memories of home to serve as the stage. AG: Not that it's a su8stitute for the previous reality. 8ut the reminders of home are everywhere. GC: WH4T 4BOUT YOUR FR13NDS? 1 GU3SS YOU ST1LL G3T TO H4NG OUT W1TH TH3M 4LL? AG: Yes. I see them often enough. AG: Except for one, whom I haven't seen at all since 8efore we all died. AG: In fact, she's the only reason we are here in the first place, as opposed to merely ceasing to exist upon the scratch. AG: In life, she was the only one I would have called a close friend, in a way. AG: The thing is, no8ody liked her much either. We had that in common. ::::) GC: WOW, 1TS B33N TH4T LONG S1NC3 YOU S4W H3R? AG: Remem8er how I said the gods could keep you dancing around someone you're looking for indefinitely? GC: Y34H BUT... GC: B1LL1ONS OF SW33PS?? AG: Well, "8illions," yes. In a manner of speaking. GC: 1S SH3 BY 4NY CH4NC3 TH3 TROUBL3M4K3R YOU W3R3 T4LK1NG 4BOUT? AG: That's right. In fact, we are on our way to visit her now. GC: OH GC: SO TH4TS WH3R3 TH1S BR4NCH 1S T4K1NG US! AG: Notice the moon up there? AG: And not the larger green interloper. That one never 8elonged to my world. It is your memory, not mine. GC: Y34H TH3 CUT3 L1TTL3 BUBBL3GUM MOONS! TH4TS WH3R3 SH3 1S? AG: It's the setting of the memory she entered. AG: From her perspective, she has just arrived here. AG: Your friends should 8e joining us too, 8efore your meteor clears the 8u88le. AG: May8e together we can 8ring the Thief of Life up to speed.