Ted (merovingian) wrote,

The Questing Beast

Sometimes, I work as a private detective.

Well, that's not quite true. Sometimes I break into the office of a private detective and sit there smoking a cheap cigar and hoping that someone will come in and ask me to do something detectivey.

Usually, they just ask me to get out of their office. But this time, I got a customer.

And usually if it's a customer, I say pithy things and hope that this will somehow be a substitution for professional training and certification. But you could tell this guy was trouble from the minute he walked into the room.

He dropped an envelope on my desk. It was labeled IMPORTANT.

"I got this letter in the mail, and it's labeled IMPORTANT," he said.

"I see that," I replied pithily.

"Inside is just a bunch of crappy credit card offers. Normally I'd toss this in the recycling, but it says on the envelope that it's important. I need to find out what's so important about these particular crappy credit card offers."

"Hmm," I replied pithily, "Mister, I think you've been had."

"Back off, gumshoe!" he replied angrily, "I've been hunting for six years now to try to discern the importance of this particular letter, and I haven't gotten a step closer. I know it's important, because it says right there, but I need to unlock the secret importance of it."

I picked up the letter and frowned at it pithily. "It's important because you've been researching it for six years. It's your Questing Beast, the thing you strive for. It represents the tension between the frustration of an unending journey and the thrill of seeing purpose in the world. The quest is what makes it important; beyond that, it's just some crappy credit card offers."

"Thanks," he said. He gave me three crisp hundred dollar bills, which with the word MYSTERIOUS written in Sharpie in the top right corner.

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