Dresden Files: Twin Cities

Idle Observations of an Immortal Man

An Aleksander Erikson Story

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The Story

Alek has liven a long time, here are some of the thoughts that move and mold him:

  • After losing his wife, he spent 230 years traveling the world, drinking, womanizing, and especially gambling… why not? When you live forever, riches come and go. You get really good at picking up on the games, calculating the odds, and reading the players and their motivations, deducing their reasoning. Sometimes you can’t help yourself. Bet Big, or don’t bother. Darling, a true lady takes off her dignity with her clothes and does her whorish best. At other times you can be as modest and dignified as your persona requires. People who go broke in a big way never miss any meals. It is the poor jerk who is shy half a slug who must tighten his belt. Always store Beer in a dark place. Keep your clothes and your gun where you can find them in the dark! There is only one way to console a widow. But remember the risk. There is no such thing as ‘‘Social Gambling. Either you are there to cut the other blokes heart out and eat it—or you’re a sucker. If you don’t like this choice—don’t gamble. All debts need to be paid in full when the ship sails.
  • During (and Since) his centuries of debauchery, Alex would join a branch of the military, or local law enforcement body. He would serve for a while, out of principle. Then leave out of necessity. His liver may regenerate constantly, but he still gets drunk – impairing his faculties. Several times, his inexperience or his inebriation have led to the deaths of others There are times when no amount of alcohol will quiet those voices. Sober for a good while now, he tries to atone. A brute kills for pleasure. A fool kills from hate. No state has an inherent right to survive through conscript troops and, in the long run, no state ever has. Roman matrons used to say to their sons: “Come back with your shield, or on it.” Later on this custom declined. So did Rome. Those who refuse to support and defend a state have no claim to protection by that state. Killing an anarchist or a pacifist should not be defined as “murder” in a legalistic sense. The offense against the state, if any, should be “Using deadly weapons inside city limits,” or “Creating a traffic hazard,” or “Endangering bystanders,” or other misdemeanor. However, the state may reasonably place a closed season on these exotic asocial animals whenever they are in danger of becoming extinct. An authentic buck pacifist has rarely been seen off Earth, and it is doubtful that any have survived the trouble there…regrettable, as they had the biggest mouths and the smallest brains of any of the primates. The small-mouthed variety of anarchist has spread through the Galaxy at the very wave front of the Diaspora; there is no need to protect them. But they often shoot back.
  • An Athiest that beleives in Magic? Any priest or shaman must be presumed guilty until proved innocent. History does not record anywhere at any time a religion that has any rational basis. Religion is a crutch for people not strong enough to stand up to the unknown without help. But, like dandruff, most people do have a religion and spend time and money on it and seem to derive considerable pleasure from fiddling with it. Men rarely (if ever) manage to dream up a God superior to themselves. Most Gods have the manners and morals of a spoiled child. What are the facts? Again and again and again-what are the facts? Shun wishful thinking, ignore divine revelation, forget what “the stars foretell,” avoid opinion, care not what the neighbors think, never mind the unguessable “verdict of history”—what are the facts, and to how many decimal places? You pilot always into an unknown future; facts are your single clue. Get the facts!

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