Without high compelling.

Sure, one could slip into the mind of a Venway and have them waltz into the grounds and get the information you need, but there is the possibility you might get caught, diplomatic issues, making Erica un-neccesarily angry…

And, there is the challenge.

So, the Venway. Ancient, rigid etiquette, precise pronunciation, often rhetorical. Love their ceremony and rites. The rumour is that they never deny a request, it’s just the answer you seek might be given in around 400 years after you ask. I can wait that long (apparently), Scout can’t.

So, how about presenting the requesting using an ancient lyrical style? If it seems like it’s been considered for 400 years already, that might speed things up a bit 🙂

So, go with what you know: the Shijing. Both Origin and Earth both know it by the same name; the ritualistic verse of the Deva and the poetry of the Ancient Chinese. I wouldn’t be surprised if both sprung from Venway.

So, generally a four-ish syllable meter, a slight caesura between the second and third syllables, syntactically related couplets…ok, this can work.

Give me the damn data, you ancient vampiric bastards…

And the first draft is in the bin.

Try some inspiration, and after that, read some examples:

In large volume, those flowing waters,
Roll on their swollen flood.
Rapid is that flying falcon,
Now soaring, now rising higher.
When I think of those lawless men,
Now I rise up, now I walk about.
The sorrow of my heart,
Cannot be repressed nor forgotten.

That I can work with!

The evening defeats, the sun’s dominance,

The time of Venway comes forth.

Light sears skin but never your pride,

Through reflection, your deeds are true.

…this is such a gamble. The Venway seem to be big on what they call ‘Li’, an acknowledgement of their place in the great scheme of things. Hopefully that means they learn from everything, and appreciate that others might want to do the same.

Which is why they REALLY need to keep reading.

When she looks to her future it seems certain…

Waffling much? Try more wine, then more words.

Her future seeming clear and set,

Is clouded, is seeking truth.

Mysteries of the past await,

Long to be remembered and reviewed.

AH! “Reviewed”…lyrically matches but that’s a tosser of a word to close on.

…or is it? Appeal to the bureaucratically minded of the Venway?

Reflected? That could work. It’s the last word, the lynchpin. All of this designed to make the reader think of their own past, and how knowledge of it has shaped their future and their goals. Connect with them and through that, get them to connect with Scout and see her point of view.

…Draft two done. I need to see Hagan.