Mapmaker

Tenley looked through her spyglass at the edge of the world. The ocean spilled over in a waterfall that stretched from north to south as far as her strained eyes could see. The sails were already down, but pretty soon they’d have to paddle their great ship against the current to keep from going over the edge.

“Bring me the mapmaker,” she called from the crow’s nest.

Soon enough, the mapmaker, along with her parchment and her charcoal, joined Tenley high above the ship.

“Prim,” Tenley began, “why have you stopped drawing?”

“I’ve grown tired of drawing maps, and my hands are weary. Look how they shake.”

Indeed, her hands tremored like a guppy before a gale.

“Yes, Prim, but if you stop drawing then we reach the end of the map. Why don’t you draw a jagged mountain or some other such shaky lined place for us to moor while you rest?”

“Because we explore nothing new!” She knocked her charcoals to the nest’s floor. “We’re not explorers at all.”

“Ah,” Tenley said, “so we’ve come to the heart of the matter. Then draw nothing, my dear, and we shall explore what lies beyond the edge.”

Prim looked out at the world’s end and began to cry. Sniffling, she picked up her charcoal and drew months and months’ worth of ocean before them.

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