Click here to Download Sea of Tranquility PDF Book by Emily St. John Mandel English having PDF Size 3.6 MB and No of Pages 241.
The last dinner party began smoothly enough, but trouble started when the conversation turned, as ever and always, to the unimaginable splendor of the Raj. Edwin’s parents were born in India, Raj babies, English children raised by Indian nannies—“If I hear one more word about her goddamned ayah.”
Sea of Tranquility PDF Book by Emily St. John Mandel
|Name of Book||Sea of Tranquility|
|Author||Emily St. John Mandel|
|PDF Size||3.6 MB|
|No of Pages||241|
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Edwin’s brother Gilbert muttered once, never finishing the thought—and raised on tales of an unseen Britain that, Edwin couldn’t help but suspect, had been slightly disappointing when they first laid eyes on it in their early twenties. (“More rain than I’d expected,” was all Edwin’s father would say on the matter.
There was another family at that last dinner party, the Barretts, of similar profile: John Barrett had been a commander in the Royal Navy, and Clara, his wife, had also spent her first few years in India. Their eldest son, Andrew, was with them. The Barretts knew that British India was an inevitable detour in any evening spent with Edwin’s mother, and as old friends.
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They understood that once Abigail got the Raj out of her system, conversation could move on. “You know, I so often find myself thinking of the beauty of British India,” his mother said. “The colors were remarkable.” “The heat was rather oppressive, though,” Edwin’s father said. “That’s one thing I didn’t miss, once we came here.”
“Oh, I never found it terribly oppressive.” Edwin’s mother had a far-off look that Edwin and his brothers called her British India expression. There was a haziness about her that meant she was no longer with them; she was riding an elephant or strolling through a garden of verdant tropical flowers or being served cucumber sandwiches by her goddamned ayah or something, who knows.
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“Nor did the natives,” Gilbert said mildly, “but I suppose that climate’s not for everyone.” What inspired Edwin to speak just then? He found himself dwelling on the matter years later, at war, in the terminal horror and boredom of the trenches. Sometimes you don’t know you’re going to throw a grenade until you’ve already pulled the pin.
“Evidence suggests they feel rather more oppressed by the British than by the heat,” Edwin said. He glanced at his father, but his father seemed to have frozen, his glass halfway between the table and his lips. “Darling,” said his mother, “whatever can you mean?” “They don’t want us there,” Edwin said. He glanced around the table, at all the silent staring faces.
“Not a great deal of ambiguity on that point, I’m afraid.” He listened to his own voice as if from some distance away, with wonderment. Gilbert’s mouth had fallen open. “I do beg your pardon,” Edwin’s father said, to their guests. “One might reasonably mistake my youngest son for a grown man, but it seems he’s still a child. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book
To your room, Edwin. We’ve heard quite enough for one evening.” Edwin rose from the table with great formality, said, “Good night, everyone,” went to the kitchen to request that a sandwich be delivered to his room—the main course hadn’t yet been served—and then retired to await his sentence.
It came before midnight, with a knock on the door. “Come in,” he said. He’d been standing by the window, staring fretfully out at the movements of a tree in the wind. Gilbert came in, closed the door behind him, and sprawled into the ancient stained armchair that was among Edwin’s most treasured possessions.
“Quite the performance, Eddie.” “I don’t know what I was thinking,” said Edwin. “Actually, no, that’s not true. I do know. I am absolutely certain there was not a single thought in my head. It was like a kind of void.” “Are you unwell?” “Not at all. Never better.” “It must have been rather thrilling,” Gilbert said. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book
“It was, actually. I won’t say I regret it.” Gilbert smiled. “You’re to go to Canada,” he said gently. “Father’s making arrangements.” What if one wanted to disappear into wilderness instead? A strange thought on a northbound boat a week later, steaming up the broken coast of the west side of Vancouver’s Island. A landscape of sharp beaches and forest, mountains rising up behind.
Then all at once the broken rocks subside into a white-sand beach, the longest Edwin has ever seen. He sees villages on the shore, smoke rising, those wooden columns with wings and painted faces —totem poles, he remembers now—erected here and there. He doesn’t understand them and therefore finds them menacing.
After a long time the white sand subsides into rocky crags and narrow inlets again. Every so often he sees a canoe in the distance. What if one were to dissolve into the wilderness like salt into water. He wants to go home. For the first time, Edwin begins to worry about his sanity. On a sunny morning in September, he’s out for a walk when he comes upon two indigenous women laughing on the beach. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book
Sisters? Good friends? They speak in a rapid language unlike anything he’s ever heard, a language punctuated by sounds he can’t imagine being able to replicate, let alone render in the Roman alphabet. Their hair is long and dark, and when one of them turns her head, light glances off a pair of enormous shell earrings.
The women are wrapped in blankets against a cold wind. They fall silent and watch him as he approaches. “Good morning,” he says, and touches the brim of his hat. “Good morning,” one replies. Her accent has a beautiful lilt. Her earrings hold all the colors of the dawn sky. Her companion, whose face bears a scattering of smallpox scars, just looks at him and says nothing.
This isn’t out of keeping with Edwin’s experience of Canada—if anything, he reflects, it would come as the shock of his life if after half a year in the New World he were to find himself suddenly able to charm the locals—but the flat uninterest of the women’s gaze is unnerving. This is a moment, he realizes, when he could express his views on colonization to people on the other side of the equation, so to speak. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book
But he can’t think of anything to say that doesn’t sound absurd under the circumstances—if he tells them he believes colonization to be abhorrent, surely the logical next question will be Then what are you doing here?—so he says nothing further, and then they’re behind him and the moment has passed.
He keeps walking, and then at some distance, still feeling their eyes on his back and wishing to convey an impression of having some sort of important errand to attend to, he turns toward the wall of trees. He never goes into the forest, because he’s afraid of bears and cougars, but now it holds a strange appeal.
He’ll step in a hundred paces, he decides, no more. Counting off a hundred paces might calm him—counting has always calmed him—and if he walks straight for the full hundred then surely he can’t get lost. Getting lost is death, he can see that. No, this whole place is death. No, that’s unfair—this place isn’t death, this place is indifference. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Download
This place is utterly neutral on the question of whether he lives or dies; it doesn’t care about his last name or where he went to school; it hasn’t even noticed him. He feels somewhat deranged. “I’m here to serve everyone who walks through those doors.” But the details are already fading.
In the moment, the strangeness Edwin encountered in the forest was utterly destabilizing, but now he finds himself thinking of a particularly bad morning at school. He was nine, maybe ten, and he realized that he couldn’t read the words in front of him, because the letters were wriggling into incoherence and there were spots swimming in his vision.
He stood from his desk to ask to go see matron, and he fainted. Fainting was darkness, but also sound: a murmuring and chirping like a chorus of birds, a blank void followed rapidly by an impression of being comfortably at home in bed—wishful thinking on the part of his subconscious, presumably—and then he woke into utter silence. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Download
Sound returned gradually, like someone turning a dial, silence fading into clamor and racket, the exclamations of other boys and the rapid steps of the approaching teacher—“Stand up, St. Andrew, no more malingering”—and was the moment just now in the forest really so different? There were sounds, he reasons, and darkness, just like in that first instance.
Perhaps he just fainted. “I thought I saw something,” Edwin says slowly, “but as I say it, I realize that perhaps I didn’t.” “If you did,” Roberts says gently, “you wouldn’t be the first.” “What do you mean?” “It’s just, I’ve heard stories,” the priest says. “That is, one hears stories.” This clumsy amendment strikes Edwin as a kind of camouflage, Roberts changing his patterns of speech to sound more English.
More like Edwin. There’s a wrongness about the man that Edwin can’t entirely pinpoint. “I’d like to show you something strange.” The composer, who was famous in an extremely limited, niche kind of way, i.e., in zero danger of being recognized on the street but most people in a couple of smallish artistic subcultures knew his name, was obviously uncomfortable, sweating as he leaned in close to his mic. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Download
“My sister used to record videos. This next one is a video of hers that I found in storage, after her death, and it’s got some kind of glitch in it that I can’t explain.” He was quiet for a moment, adjusting a knob on his keyboard. “I wrote some music to go with it, but right before the glitch, the music will go silent, so we can appreciate the beauty of technical imperfection.”
The music began first, a dreamlike swelling of strings, suggestions of static just under the surface, and then the video: his sister had walked with her camera along a faint forest path, toward an old-growth maple tree. She stepped under the branches and angled her camera upward, into green leaves flashing in the sunlight, in the breeze.
And the music stopped so abruptly that the silence seemed like the next beat. The beat after that was darkness: the screen went black, just for a second, and there was a brief confusion of overlapping sounds—a few notes of a violin, a dim cacophony like the interior of a metropolitan train station, a strange kind of whoosh that suggested hydraulic pressure—then in a heartbeat the moment was over. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Free
The tree was back, and there was some chaotic camerawork as the composer’s sister seemingly looked around wildly, forgetting that she had the camera in her hand. It was the kind of place that required few customers, because when people spent money here, they spent tens of thousands of dollars.
The morning after her dinner with Louisa, whiling away a silent hour behind a reception desk the size of a car, Mirella searched for Vincent. She tried Vincent’s husband’s surname first. A search for “Vincent Alkaitis” produced old society photos, some with Mirella in them—parties, galas, etc.—and also pages of Vincent at her husband’s sentencing hearing, blank-faced, in a gray suit, and absolutely nothing else.
The most recent images were from 2011. “Vincent Smith” turned up dozens of different people, mostly men, none of them the Vincent she was looking for. She couldn’t find Vincent on social media, or anywhere else. She leaned back in her chair, frustrated. High over her desk, a light was buzzing. Mirella wore a great deal of makeup at work, and when she was tired in the afternoons, sometimes her face felt heavy. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Free
Out on the white-tiled prairie of the sales floor, a lone sales rep was walking a customer through every conceivable color of the company’s signature composite material, which looked like stone but wasn’t. Vincent’s parents were long dead, but she’d had a brother. Dredging up the brother’s name required a deep dive into memory, which was a place Mirella generally tried to avoid.
She glanced at the door to make sure no customers were approaching, then closed her eyes, took two deep breaths, and typed “Paul Smith + composer” into Google. “Oh,” the fedora said, brightening suddenly, “I didn’t realize there was a psychedelic influence on your work.” He leaned forward, in a confiding way.
“I went pretty deep with psychedelics, myself. Once you get into heroic doses, you start to have certain realizations about the world. So much is an illusion, right?” Gaspery shot him a troubled look. Mirella watched him while she waited for an opportunity to ask about Vincent. Gaspery seemed foreign in a way that she couldn’t quite parse. Sea of Tranquility PDF Book Free