At any rate, having concluded my business, I was too far off and too weirdly woken up to go to the nearest comic book store, so I went to an RPG, Wargames and Hobby Shop instead, where a number of old books (up to 10 years old, I think) were on offer. When I say old, I mean only pertaining to their publication date, since there is absolutely nothing denoting their age appearance-wise (OK, except for a small batch). Hitting myself over the head for not having purchased AEG's Swashbuckling Adventures from the offer stand, I found it missing, so I went ahead and dug through EVERYTHING else. In the end, I came up with the following items:
Mythos Fiction of Robert E.
As for the third book, well, it contains every bit of Cthulhu Mythos written by Robert E. Howard, the literary father of Conan, Kull and Solomon Kane. Among the many tales included in the 350 pages, are "The Black Stone" and "The Gods of Bal-Sagoth", in case you were wondering where the metal band got its name from.
For these three books I consider treasures, I payed a grand total of... 9 euros. This pertains to the irony in the title of today's post, as, a few years back (well, up to 5, probably), these books would have cost me around 65 euros! That is very nearly the sum I would pay for the Deluxe Edition of Hyoborian Adventures MMORPG, for the PC. A little food for thought on the progressive value of literature versus the value of the rather mindless act of gaming. Do not get me wrong, I am a PC gamer too (though I loathe MMORPG) but still, I realize that, counting out a few masterpiece Adventure Games, it is a mindless activity. Incidentally, the images above are my scans of the actual book covers, who are as if they shipped from the companies only yesterday.
Following these purchases, I decided to go over to my publisher and buy some more copies of the short story collection containing my "Double Substitution Crime", to make gifts of. As I was making my way towards a main avenue, to catch a cab, I chanced upon an acquaintance I had not seen for over a month: a sweet young woman with mischievous green eyes. After the exchange of a few words, I noticed she was looking at me in a peculiarly amused way. When I looked at her questioningly, she said:
"You smell like... something out of a mountain."
"I don't know, something between a Sage plant and Mountain Tea..."
"Um... do I?"
"Yeah. I think it's really nice, but also kinda funny. Don't you?"
"Well, it's the first time anyone has ever told me such a thing, but I will take it as a compliment."
"It was meant as one."
Though it would have been completely out of context to discuss at the time, I knew why that remark brought a rather weird, even silly smile to my face; once, what seems like a very, very long time ago (in fact, around 10 years), when it seemed to me that it was impossible to be unhappy on this small blue world, a very different girl had whispered tenderly into my ear:
"You have the scent of wet earth. It's a good scent."
So there, a totally unexpected remark, from a completely unexpected quarter, brightened the rest of my day, for no (rationally) good reason at all. That, in my opinion, is the beautiful randomness of life.