“Dancing is a good idea, Austin, Sianna. It teaches balance, rhythm, and a sense of where your body is n relation to your partner.”
It turned out that almost everything was useful to learning how to be a samurai, at least to hear Miss Ascha tell it. But the weird thing was, everything was also useful to learning how to be a dancer, like Sianna – even swords-training – or a teacher, like Ethelwin wanted to be – even the meditation exercises – or even a bounty hunter, which is what Sweetbriar wanted to be this week.
Austin wasn’t sure if Miss Ascha was right; he wasn’t even sure if she was being honest or if she was just encouraging them to learn their math and dancing and meditation. But Professor Inazuma and Principal Doomsday agreed with Miss Ascha, yes. Dancing was useful for being a samurai. Addition and subtraction were useful for being a samurai. And science and history were very very useful.
They were his teachers, and Austin was going to have to listen to them if he wanted to be a samurai.
“I don’t see why Sianna and Sweetbriar can’t run with you, Austin. You all need an escort, after all.”
“They’re going to run slow.“
“Well, isn’t that the point?” Miss Ascha could sound so reasonable when she was being so stubborn and difficult. “To see the city and understand it?”
“And to run.“
“Well, I’ll tell you what. You try it for two weeks, and if it leaves you miserable, then I will come up with another solution. But Ammon is willing to take the time to run with the three of you, and not many on the staff have that time or inclination.”
Austin had run all over his home town alone, before he came here. But he understood that he’d have to follow rules if he wanted to be a samurai. “Yes, Miss Ascha.”
“And then the pre-collapse Americans… Yes, Austin?”
“Were they really shipping food all over the world?”
Professor Lily pulled another map down. This one had lines drawn all over it. “Many times they were shipping food to another country, like this, another continent,” she pointed at the map, “and then shipping a very similar food back from that continent. But most Americans in those days didn’t farm. Most people in affluent nations had never seen a farm, much less worked on one, as you have.”
“You’ve worked on a farm?” Sweetbriar had to know that already, didn’t she? But she turned around and stared at him.
“Yeah? Where’d you grow up?”
It explained a lot about his classmate, but Austin was more interested, right now, in what Professor Lily was talking about. “Didn’t anyone tell them how to do it more reasonably?”
“What sort of authority do you think would have done that, Austin? What sort does it now?”
“Well, whoever runs the town, right?”
From the look on Miss Lily’s face, Austin could tell that he was going to have to be a samurai farmer to make anything work out sensibly.
This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/799478.html. You can comment here or there.