Another Word for Map is Faith
by Christopher Rowe
On the other side of the valley, across the creek, the real ridge line—the geology, her father would have said disdainfully—stabbed upstream. By her rough estimation it had rolled perhaps two degrees off the angle of its writ mapping. Lucas would determine the exact discrepancy later, when he extracted his instruments from their feather and wax paper wrappings.
“Third world bullshit,” Lucas said, walking up to her. “The transit services people from the university paid these little schemers before we ever climbed onto that deathtrap, and now they’re asking for the
fare.” Lucas had been raised near the border, right outside the last town the bus had stopped at, in fact, though he’d dismissed the notion of visiting any family. His patience with the locals ran inverse to his familiarity with them.
“Does this count as the third world?” she asked him. “Doesn’t there have to be a general for that? Rain forests and steel ruins?”
Lucas gave his half-grin—not quite a smirk—acknowledging her reduction. Cartographers were famous for their willful ignorance of social expressions like politics and history.
About the Author
Christopher Rowe’s story collection, Telling the Map, will be released by Small Beer Press in July 2017. He will also launch a new middle grade series, the Supernormal Sleuthing Service, co-written with his wife, author Gwenda Bond, that month. He is currently hard at work on Sarah Across America, an unusual fantasy novel about maps and megafauna, among other things. His first novel Sandstorm fulfilled a childhood dream of writing a Dungeons & Dragons novel and was published by Wizards of the Coast (teenage Christopher is beaming, somewhere).
He lives in a hundred-year-old house in Lexington, Kentucky, with wife Gwenda Bond, Hemingway the Cat, Izzy the Dog, and Puck the Dog.
About the Narrator
Ann Leckie is the author of the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Award winning novel Ancillary Justice. She has worked as a waitress, a receptionist, a rodman on a land-surveying crew, and a recording engineer. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.