The Reader and Peregrine Stumpings fell out of the chariot onto a mossy lawn. They were both feeling sea sick. Or maybe space sick.
Space travel in a horse drawn chariot is probably something that takes a bit of getting used to. Their journey had shaken and wobbled and squeezed them thoroughly. Apollo had sung cheerfully throughout the flight to encourage the horses to greater efforts and to hearten his passengers and though the horses had certainly charged through the skies with great enthusiasm, the passengers were distinctly wilting.
No matter. A vision of loveliness stood at the top of a flight of white marble steps.
‘There you are!’ said Virgo, and her voice was low and sweet and clear. The Reader and Peregrine stood up and dusted themselves off and instantly felt much better. It is wonderful what hanging out with a star (even a constellation) can do for your state of health.
They turned to thank Apollo for the lift.
He was already taking up the reins once more.
‘Off to Japan!’ he said. ‘Mustn’t be late for breakfast. If the sun doesn’t turn up on time, Chronos gets ever so cross. And I can tell you, you really don’t want a telling off from him!’
And off he sailed, into the sky once again, singing.
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