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Welcome Distractions

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Slartibartfast sits at his desk, straightedge in hand. One might think that a straightedge would be a moot point where so many squiggly lines are concerned, but Slartibartfast is a professional; each squiggly line is calibrated exactly to fit in with the whole picture. He frowns in concentration, glancing from his paper to the developing coastline so far below. The aircar moves a few miles to the left, displaying the region on which he has been working tirelessly.

A giggle rings out from behind him. Slartibartfast tries to ignore it. There are so many things left to do, and though the ground crews are impeccable in their work, they cannot finish until Slartibartfast's last edits are complete.

It would be so much easier if there weren't a giggling, half-formed blonde child perched on the rail of the aircar.

Slartibartfast sighs, resigning himself to another delay. He is an artist, not a babysitter. He has heard of similar occurrences- of planets coming to life under their creators' fingertips- but this strikes him as a little excessive.

Behind him, Norway tries his hardest to stifle the next round of giggles. He fails miserably, but there is laughter in his creator's eyes when he turns at last to face him.

As the millennia pass, Norway will no longer laugh so freely. A blank mask will replace his radiant smile. And on a gray Thursday millions of years from now, he will be obliterated along with the rest of the planet.

But for now, Norway is just a child. His blonde form wavers uncertainly in the air as the ground crews change this or that mountain. He is not a nation so much as the promise of a nation, still wet behind the ears and a little ticklish around the fjords.