Ch. 95. Maddening Bureaucracy

Y’lanna sighed heavily.  It certainly did seem that the whole bureaucracy, whether it was the one here or the one back on the Cerebral Moon, was out to get her. The people who had ‘owned’ her were masters of red tape, knowing what was available to bind her to their service forever. Though she wasn’t without hope, but really? Who would go through the effort of dimensional travel just to chase a refugee?  A spy, someone who knows too much maybe, but her?  Surely they wouldn’t.  After all they wouldn’t risk going through the SVA.

“I’m probably already recorded as dead.  No one has ever entered my home dimension via the SVA, the Spatial Vortex Anomaly, and ships that got too close simply vanished.” She had to state it though it wouldn’t have made any impact.

She decided that she hated bureaucracy, all of it, anywhere in existence. She had given this one a chance, and it had spat back in her face. She idly wondered if she should have just lied and told them that it was an “accident,” that she went to have a look at the Spatial Vortex Anomaly and just got too close and “got caught in its swirling vortex.”

Either way, it was far too late now, and her seething anger gave way to resignation. The bureaucracy would do whatever the bureaucracy would do. She had her chance and now she just had to wait and see what would happen. She had hoped this would have been a mere formality, though it was not to be, and wished she could sigh again but she had already done so once already.

She was thankful that Ruili had stood up for her, whatever it amounted to, and at least she could stay until all this was figured out. But the pen that was handed to her, this was something completely new to her. She grabbed and tried to hold it in the same manner that she saw the Chancellor do, but did a poor job doing so. It felt strange and alien.

She didn’t read it.  She knew she should, but she also knew that she was at the mercy of the bureaucracy. She looked at the paper blankly trying to work out what to do. “Sign my name?” she asked to clarify. That was the only thing she could think of that made sense. Something that would identify the person as well as signaling their acceptance of whatever it was they were signing.

After receiving confirmation from Lord Ruili as she looked up at him once again, she felt like she was about to ask something stupid, but she needed to know. “What would happen if I were to somehow make one of these forms unusable?”

She looked at the Chancellor as she started to respond.  “Oh, well, my dear, I’d have to write a new set. There must be three and they must be identical or else their records won’t match up, and then they won’t be valid. I mean for the recitation.”

Y’lanna stared blankly at the Chancellor. “Recitation?”

To which the Chancellor, remembering that they were talking to someone who was foreign to this world, replied, “They are enchanted, my dear girl. You see, in addition to the words written on them, they have the power to recite the history of how they were made. They are a class of document known as Witness Documents.”

“Hmmmmm.” She said. How was she going to write on these documents when she had never wielded a pen in her life? “Then perhaps I could have something to practice on?”

“Certainly,” was the reply, and a blank piece of paper was slid over to her.

She started to attempt to teach herself how to write, and soon learnt that pressure was important.  Too much and she would tear the paper, not enough and there wouldn’t be a mark.  Furthermore, it had to be consistent. Eventually, she did start to get the hang of it. She wrote in Zoneloger script but not properly. She knew the shapes but didn’t have the experience at writing with a pen to make the shapes properly, but they would be good enough.

It would be bountifully clear just how inexperienced Y’lanna was at writing, just by how her hand moved but also looking through the Dragon’s Lens they’d appear scratchy and slightly odd as if a child was just getting the hang of writing their own name.

This was obviously something that she would have to learn how to do properly as there were no computers or anything that allowed electronic entry of data or information. Everything would all have to be written instead, a skill that Y’lanna certainly lacked. Still, despite being new to this world, it was slightly humiliating being so terrible at something that obviously everyone could do. At least it gave her something to do while her fate was decided.

She managed to scribble her name on all three documents.  They didn’t look quite right, but at least she had managed to put it down on paper without tearing or otherwise making it completely illegible.  That was a minor victory at least and so now, having done so, there was only one thing left to do.

“So what’s going to happen now while I wait for whatever hearing or whatever’s going to happen to determine If I get a passport?”

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About Mura

Mura Muravyets is the screen-name of Jen Fries, surrealist artist, book artist, hope-to-be writer.
This entry was posted in In the Grand Navigators, Plesz, Ruili, Y'lanna and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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