Bone dragonPretty sure Poe was going to say “you do really have souls. Or at least a feature that reasonably fills the properties humans are thinking of when they use the word ‘soul’.”

But Miranda gets caught up in a tangent on dinosaur bones and dragons.

And, I mean, hard to blame her. Dragons are very distracting.


The next day.

Poe: I do believe you can do this. You learned one piece of magic so quickly already.

Miranda: There’s no such thing as magic.

Poe: Then . . . when you transported us across space, what should I call it?

Miranda: A natural process whose properties we don’t fully understand yet. Same as everything else humanity has ever called “magic” or “religion.”

If the weather’s bad, we blame a witch or hire a shaman. When it clears up, we thank Yahweh for sending a rainbow.

We don’t understand how a child gets personality, so we credit a soul. And if the kid was autistic, we used to figure it had been taken by faeries.

Take any real thing — like dinosaur bones —

— and start calling it “magic”, and eventually you lose all perspective. Sooner or later you’re falling for that story from George down the street about that time he fought a real-live one. And, ooh, it breathed fire!

Poe: Now, Master . . . not all of those things are . . .