Wild Thyme - 6On the first morning of the conference, Blade spent his first post-waking moments grimly contemplating the hosting and keynote-speaking tasks to which duty had condemned him. It was not so much the conference itself, but the location that was damn near giving him hives. He couldn't look at Grand Fusel Lodge, much less enter its cavernous lobby, without wondering how many millions of the park's budget had gone into the opulent renovations that a certain Mr. Spinner had demanded when he was superintendant, or remembering the aches and pains of days spent in post-repair recovery after the previous year's huge fire. Yet, Blade was expected not only to enter, but make the opening speech of the three-day event. There is not enough booze in the world to make me WANT to go THERE, of all places and speechify in front of several hundred people. Even if they were all peers in the fraternity of SAR and aerial firefighting.
He raised himself finally, shaking out his rotor assembly and