Favorito and Razor had spent so much time together in confined spaces that they had actually begun to look alike. Although Favorito was white and Razor was black, they were both balding, the fringe of hair remaining to them tied back in a ponytail; they both wore reading glasses perched up on their foreheads, sported scraggly beards often sprinkled with crumbs, and wore comp-pads hanging from their belts. They were nerds, but they were archaeological nerds, and that made them kin. Their relationships seemed to pick up right where they'd left off, with old jokes and insults exchanged.
It felt good to relax a little. She showed them to the Imperial Hotel, where they would spend the next eight days in tacky opulence before moving into the austere, cramped quarters of the Icarus. Compared to the hotel, the Icarus might even look good. While she waited for them to get settled in, she called up the index of Archaeology Quarterly and read Morden's article. While tight in focus, examining only the Anfras love incantation, it was the most brilliant piece of linguistic work she'd ever come across. He was right: it was "the love that abides no borders."
She'd always thought the incantation had meant that, in knowing no borders, love could transcend any impediment. But now, in abiding no borders, the incantation suggested that love should stand for no impediment. It was a more aggressive philosophy, and it demanded more action from its adherents. She wondered if she had allowed impediments to come between her and John. She didn't believe so; she had never believed their careers and their time apart had been impediments. Yet it had been over a year since they'd spent an extended amount of time with each other. And now it would be at least another six months. If she