Chapter 61 – Mission

There is more than enough time here in the Bormeas’ compound to review, digest and ruminate the events with which I’m involved. Here, it seems, there is nothing but time as there is very little to do. Except for the evening meals there is nothing to gauge the passing of time and at the end of the day there is no sense of accomplishment. There is no sense of purpose here as each day blends into the next. While the Caysas, and I presume the tribes and inhabitants, pursue the same routine every day, there is purpose in gauging the measurement of plant life and offspring. The purpose is in seeing life continue on in others.

While my arrival had initially sparked some excitement for the other Bormeas, it quickly faded in a manner of days. After finding out all they could about the city I had supposedly come from, the other Bormeas no longer were interested in knowing more about me which worked to my advantage as I had nothing more to tell them.

I realize now that what is new one day is tarnished by the next day. Since my welcome I have been left to fend for myself and all social niceties have been abandoned. It is as if the Bormeas spend the day brooding and wallowing in their negative, poisonous thoughts, only to spew them out when joining each other for mealtime. Given their demeanor then, why would the Bormeas want to spend any more time together?

I have noticed a few things in my short time here so far. Much like the Caysas who smell of their environment of rock, earth and plants, the Bormeas have a dank, musky odor about them which mirrors the dark, oily scent of the compound. It is as though the darkness of the Bormeas has seeped out of their pores and coated the air. I examine my skin often to see if this is really true but can’t prove it. Instead, I have fashioned the idea that keeping the exterior light out of this building and suffusing the interior in deep shadows creates an environment for dark things to grow and decay. In the Bormeas’ compound windows and balcony doors are shuttered and covered with drapes as direct light will dry out our hides and even burn them. At certain times of the day, when it is the hottest, the air thickens inside and the aroma becomes so pungent with this smell it is nearly thick enough to taste. Having grown used to the warm breezes of the plains that carry the scents of spices and associating these scents with warmth of companions and delicious food, I found it almost abusive to be forced to inhale this thick scent. In this life form of a Bormea I have a hard time breathing, as though my throat is gripped by an unknown assailant – compressing my airways. The shortness of breath makes me uncomfortable in this body.

I have noticed that much of this changes to some degree once darkness falls. While the Bormeas still lumber about due to their bloated forms, they are more agile at night. Their senses are heightened as well, allowing for keener eyesight in the dark and finer tuned hearing, which is largely ignored. The dexterity of their hands still remains troublesome as the webbing in between fingers limits them. What really seems to liven the Bormeas is the nightly banquets. To retain high levels of fluids in their bodies and condition the exterior hide, they feed on meat that is only nominally cooked. Any meat is served warm, like it was when the creature was alive … only moments ago.

In the end I have finally realized what it is that has been plaguing my thoughts in regards to the Bormeas. While it is true their exterior form mirrors their own character and their laziness rivals any life form I’ve seen, it is their similarity to my kind that is … upsetting. As scouts we try to outdo one another in telling of our missions which is the only thing that gives us any sense of an individual identity. The Bormeas are simply more obvious in their competitiveness and in trying to prove their self worth. For all the tale-telling and one-upmanship between each life form, neither race ends up accomplishing a single thing. Scouts are recycled over and over for unidentifiable generations. Bormeas live and eventually die by who has the most enviable position and possessions. No individual within either race leaves anything behind to remember them by nor have they done anything positive to change the lives of their companions.