-When are you going to tell me what is going on with the Earth?-
Giuseppe frowned. A morning out with the family, on the way to see the gammar, and Curse, who may or may not have been the refugee of the lowercased-earth, had done nothing but harass and pester Giuseppe about the fate of her planet. Earth.
Well, we are not going to have that conversation today, Giuseppe thought.
They had traveled from the phalanstaries to the great open-air markets of Piazzi. The ice-covered dome ceiling reflected a thousand images of the double-worldlet that accompanied Patroclus through the Jovian margins. Menoetius. Starbrite illuminated the greens and blues of the meridians. The people laid their wares, their bougie-booboo baubles, out on the sea-grasses and panwood tables. And the rest came easily. Shoppers. Walkers. Singers and dancers. The adults played, the children got down to business.
Giuseppe had missed this life, this busy life of daily business, where every transaction was a hassle, and where every exchange was a chance to get personal. But this, this market square of sellers and shoppers, was the face people on his homeworld presented to one another. In your face, about face, kissy face. And he loved it, had missed it, and wanted more of it, if for nothing else, than to remind him of the things he had not missed. But so went love affairs. The good you think you can separate form the bad, until you miss the essence, and you just yearn, really yearn, for reunion.
He watched Curse take in this bazaar of runaway commercialism. Her dark eyes darted. The corners of her mouth drew tight. She smiled, then laughed. Then shouted out.
-To begin the world anew. That is what you have done here. So remote, so provincial, and so derivative. Yet so creative! Yours are a people who have shaken their minds from habit and tradition. You have found new approached to the old. You are not bound…to anything. You challenge! I bet your government is even revolutionary….-
-It is like watching a car wreck, Curse.-
-And your politics?-
-Like this, just more screaming.-
-No, look at this like I am…see those two ladies fighting over that bird thing?-
-That is a chicklin.-
-Weird…anyways, they don’t belong to any establishment. They are outside it!-
-No, you are wrong. This is just like anywhere else. The people just reproduce new establishments.-
-Wrong. You are saying that colonizers are merely transplants.-
-Somewhat. My people were no dummies. They brought what worked for them in the old world, and refashioned it for the new.-
-Exactly. Refashioned. I am not arguing that these people, your people, are uprooted.-
-Well, actually that is a better word. Uprooted. We are the survivors of the Rebellion. The Transformation of Mars.-
-But you are missing the main point of all this. They weren’t just thrown here and were unable to take care of themselves. They aren’t mimicking the customs of the…oppressors. Are they?-
Giuseppe stopped to think of this. He looked at his family. They watched him. Intensely.
-No…we aren’t Galileans. Or Mediceans. Or even the Minors.-
-No, you aren’t. Because of creative energies! I see it here. Imagination. You have created something that is close to reality, close to what works for you. Right now. And let me ask you—does this make you happy?-
-Yes. Being home. Being here.-
Giuseppe looked at his family. They smiled at him.
-Yes. I am happy here. Very happy.-
Curse smiled. It was crooked, but it broke through her earlier gloom.
-Good, man. Because what I see here are a people on the path to human happiness. I tried to do that, as refugee. Tried to get people to question the establishment….but I never allowed a real dialogue to take place….oh by Lucifer descending….to begin the world anew. You are the real Americans.-
-I beg your pardon, Curse. But my people came from Mars…the First Martians.-
-Julian Buren the Second was from Atlantaen California. He was the founder of the First Martians.-
-Well, people used to think California was part of America once.-
Confusion parted the furrow on Giuseppe’s face.
-So, Giuseppe, when are you going to tell me what’s going on with the Earth?-
They kept walking.