“’The instructions,’” he said, ‘”best to follow them before we begin in earnest: blow gently three times towards the seed before it hooks itself back onto your skin.  Perfect.  Now, squeeze the tail end between your thumb and forefinger and don’t let go no matter what.’”

“At that point, the seed grew very fast, assuming all sorts of shapes as if it was trying to decide what it should be.  It was almost impossible to hold.  It turned into wobbly fat jelly and wouldn’t be constrained into a stable position.  It struggled harder the larger it grew and I was at a loss as to what to do.”

“’Don’t let it go no matter what!’” Chloroph insisted.

“You try it!” I yelled handing it to him to manage.  But Chloroph retreated and stayed out of my reach.  Then, just as I was about to let go of the monstrously outgrown seedling, it steadied itself and detached itself from my fingers, leaving its tip loose between my fingers.

“By Jove!” I said, thinking this was the end of the experiment.

“’You’re doing just fine,’” Chloroph said, big furrowing lines marking his forehead in a way I’d never noticed before.

“What’s the matter? I asked, come back here, stay close to me and stop trembling like this, you make me nervous.  He came closer to me but his fingers were fidgety and his eyes dilated.”

“’You talk too much,’” he said, “’insert the tip that remains in your fingers onto the grown seed and stick it onto the upper southernmost area.  That should do it.’”

“The upper southernmost area?  Huh?  Which is it exactly?”


To be continued…©


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