Katsushika Hokusai, The Great Wave Off Kanagawa, 1823-29
Cat of the Canals: “If they want new boots or a warmer cloak or maybe a rusted iron... -
“If they want new boots or a warmer cloak or maybe a rusted iron halfhelm, they need to take them from a corpse, and before long they are stealing from the living too, from the smallfolk whose lands they’re fighting in, men very like the men they used to be. They slaughter their sheep and steal…
Devi continued to stand in the doorway, pale and staring. Concerned, I stepped forward and laid my hand lightly on her arm. She didn’t pull away as I half-expected. She simply looked down at my hand.
“I’m waiting for a quip here,” I teased gently. “You’re usually quicker than this.”
“I don’t think I can match wits with you right now,” she said.
“I never suspected you could match wits with me,” I said. “But I do like a little banter now and then.”
Devi gave a ghost of a smile, a little color coming back to her cheeks. “You’re a horse’s ass,” she said.
“That’s more like it,” I said encouragingly as I drew her out of the doorway into the bright autumn afternoon. “I knew you had it in you. — The Wise Man’s Fear