"I want to weave too," the younger one said.
"I knew this day would come
," replied the older, "but are you sure
you want to switch so early?"
"Maybe not completely
yet," it said, "but at least some of the time."
"I suppose being the subject of spells has lost its appeal?" asked the older, dropping its web momentarily.
"Well I suppose it's still flattering
, but not as exciting as it once was. I want to do more."
"We all do I suppose - I remember when I wanted to switch. The spells were no longer as sweet
anymore. Maybe I was getting too old
"I loved the ones you were in, Carl," said the younger. "I just wish I was around
back then to experience them myself."
"And now you're depriving others of the chance to experience yours so that you can switch to weaving."
"Well, not completely yet," said the younger. "Maybe I'll try for a slower transition than most other weavers, more gradually throughout my life."
"That could well work, Alyssa," smiled the older. "I can imagine that working out well for you. I think you've got the potential to be great
at both for quite a while."
"So it's settled then
? You'll teach me?"
"Sure, it would be a pleasure, but it's not like I'm the only weaver. I think there are many others you can learn from
"Do you have any particular recommendations in mind?"
"I'll have to think about that," said the older. "I've been a bit busy with my own work that I haven't paid much attention to others
"Besides your subjects, of course," interrupted the younger.
"Yes yes, besides my subjects. Like you, of course. But you already have a bit of the basics down right?"
"Well, mainly from the perspective of a subject I guess. I see what you're doing from the other side, but what's behind what you're doing I can't see. I can make good imitations
"Right, maybe I'll need to come up with a list of basic concepts that underlie what you see."
The younger scurried off its position in the web, over to the area that the older usually reserved for itself.
"The web looks so different from here," it said. "Almost like an unrelated world
"Welcome to the weaver's nest," said the older. "Here we see what's behind what our subject and everyone else sees."
"How much does our audience see?" asked the younger.
"Even less than you
," it said. "What may seem completely reasonable and predictable to you, might seem like utterly confusing nonsense
to them. But that is their place in the world
, just like this is ours. I don't envy them
. While it takes little effort to watch, they also know so little."
"So tell me what your side of the web does," said the younger. "Like those strands connecting my home to the tower."
"Those are entry points where we do most of our weaving. They help us find where we will be able to access the web, and change its construction."
"How long does it take to make changes without mistakes
?" aked the younger.
"It varies for everybody. The more you immerse yourself
in it, the faster you learn."
"I guess I'll be a slow learner then, if I'm splitting my time with being a subject."
"Yes, that's something you'll have to decide
for yourself. What you think makes the most sense to you, Alyssa."
"I'm still young," it said. "I still want to enjoy this
before I'm too old to be a subject anymore."
"Ha," laughed the older. "The web is changing you know. What you say may be true today
, but who knows what it will be like in the long run. Maybe there are parts of the web that have already changed."
"In what way?" asked the younger.
"Maybe in all ways that you can think of
, and in other ways still. The web is larger than you or I can know
"You don't think I can figure out how large it is?" asked the younger.
"It's not something anybody I know even has a guess for."
"What if I told you
I was going to find out?" asked the younger.
"I don't think you'll succeed
," said the older. "And besides, that is not our place as either subjects or weavers."
"And who's going to stop me?
" asked the younger. "You, Carl? The other weavers?"
"Ha, no," laughed the older. "You can try what you want, but I suspect the web itself will stop you, and you'll eventually just come back after repeated failure."
"You're not showing much confidence in me," said the younger. "I thought you were supposed to be on my side."
"As a subject or a weaver, I know you'll be wonderful
," said the older. "As for other things, well, we're not built for that
. Maybe it's something you can weave, I don't know."
"You know, I might just try that," said the younger. "The web would not exist without us weavers, so it shouldn't be able to stop what we weave."
"You're an ambitious one
, Alyssa, you know that?" said the older. "I wish I still had your energy."