Kopec, still seated in his chair, lifted it, moving closer to the table, closer to Spur who settled back, as well as his physiology would allow, behind the table.  He assumed a professorial air, squinting at Kopec in a slightly alarming manner. The look was not lost on Kopec who squirmed a little as he leaned forward, both hands in front of him, on the table.
“I know there are questions Kopec” murmured Spur “Where do you propose we begin?”  Kopec’s eyes shifted back and forth, he found it difficult to focus, and he was definitely avoiding Spur’s squint. An uneasy silence ensued, broken by occasional taps of Spur’s talons. “Take all the time you need, Kopec, I’m under no time constraint.” He said. “Thank you” mumbled Kopec, and at some length he summoned enough breath to exclaim “What happened to me just now? I went somewhere, did you take me somewhere?” “Oh no, I did not!” said Spur “I rather believe I showed you some possible places to go, and it would appear you went!” Kopec admitted that he was puzzled. “I don’t think I left this room, Spur, I did not change clothes, put on boots or don my scarf, my seat is still warm, therefore I must have imagined the entire adventure!” “I concur” concured Spur “I did not see you leave, so whatever you call an adventure must have happened in your mind. What do you remember?”
“It is not so much what I remember,” he began “It is more a set of impressions really. There were voices, many, many voices and noises and lights, or rather one great light. I feel sad” Kopec hung his head, and tapped the table “ I feel sad” He repeated the “sad” with some emphasis, giving special gravity to it.

“Sad?” enquired Spur, “Sad? Why exactly are you sad? Did you see things that brought pity to your heart? Did you meet someone who imparted bad news to you? What do you mean, sad?” “I mean sad, Spur, I mean I am left with a feeling that all is not well, that there are things in my life, in my head that are less than perfect, not that I have any idea what perfect is; no, wait, I do know, flowers are perfect, nature is perfect, and yet I feel that even flowers and nature have their woes, do you know what I mean?” Kopec was bumbling, fumbling for the correct example, the ideal indicator of his emotional state. “When I – When I went, where I went, for whatever reason, all the voices that I heard and colours that I saw all seemed imbued with a sense of tragedy, I’ve never really experienced that before, Spur. I feel that somehow, I have been changed, and it is an uneasy change at that.”
“All life is change, old friend” “Oh my god Spur, I expect more than mere platitudes from you, of all people, er, dragons, whatever! Really, you are beginning to disappoint me, you set me up for this experience, and when I try to tell you what I’m feeling, all I get is “All life is change”...please, spare me the Mr. Buddha routine!”
“Ah, there you have it, Kopec” Spur interjected, apparently nonplussed by Kopec’s outburst. “Buddha! Ha!”
“Buddha, ha!?” said Kopec , incredulously. “Buddha. And what does the Buddha have to say that would shed light on my feelings of sadness, disquiet and dissatisfaction?”
“Well” said Spur with great weight “These feelings that you are displaying are, we are told, the very same ones that led the great master of insight to explore his own mind, and to seek answers for the oldest questions of all time, life and death, suffering and desire. Are these not the same questions that plague your mind Kopec?”  “It would appear so, Spur, although I am loathe to think that of all the possible answers you could proffer, you fall back on Religion, or popular psychology. I thought you would be a far more original thinker.” Quickly, Spur responded “I would like to assure you my friend, that I have indeed more original thoughts than you could possibly imagine...I was not in any way attempting to proselytize you, I’m sure you are far too sophisticated and educated to fall prey to that device. I was merely injecting a start point to further thought, I’m sure you will go further with the idea!”
“That all life is change, is too obvious an observation, isn’t it?” “Not really, not when you put a magnifying glass on it” offered Spur. “I mean that when you take the simple statement, and focus on it, you will find that it impacts all further thought. Of course it is a simple statement, but it is a basic truth. When this truth is held up against all instances it initiates a profound feeling of immediacy. I believe this is what you are feeling, the immediacy of the poignant, and yes, it is sad. Nothing is going to stay as it is, at the moment of perception or in any of the following moments either. I believe that what you have experienced is the collective wail of the suffering of all sentient life, all that has consciousness of its’ own consciousness. That is all I meant to convey, and was my reason for mentioning the Buddha. All the word means, after all, is to be awake, to be aware. Today, you have awoken to awareness on your part of the condition of life. What you do with this awareness will determine where your mind will take you from here”
“My goodness, Spur, you are indeed ‘The Teacher’ aren’t you” replied Kopec. ‘I’m not trying to be sarcastic, but your explanation does nothing to address my feelings.”
“Then you must address them yourself,” said Spur. “Might I suggest that I am not your teacher, but merely the one who has appeared in your life to make you the teacher”?
“Now I feel much better” snickered Kopec “ You put all the burdens of research on me”
“You are in school Kopec, it is up to you to take the journey of inwardness. Welcome to ‘The Inward Bound School’, as rough parallel to the ‘Outward Bound School’ those difficult children are often subjected to. You will find great mountains, chasms, raging rivers and inclement weather in your own mind, I can assure you, equal to any you will encounter in the ‘real’ world. I will be your guide, but you must make the journey yourself, and I warrant you will find strengths and endurance you had not thought possible to this point.”
With that, Spur relaxed, settled back on his haunches, and drilled Kopec with a stare that was ferocious in its’ compassion. Kopec pulled his arms from the table, turned to look at the open window, and was surprised to feel warm, wet tears running down his cheeks. He raised his hand to wipe them away, ashamed to be showing such emotion before his guest. “I’m sorry I accused you of shallowness, Spur” sniffled Kopec. “I’m a reluctant student, but I appreciate, most sincerely, your interest in me. Night is drawing in, perhaps we should eat something, that is, if I can find something”
“As you think best” said Spur “Allow me to present supper” and with these words, before Kopec could blink, Spur had materialized a fine feast of fresh bread, butter, cheese and a modest bottle of wine. The table was filled, and again Kopec wiped his eyes, this time in amazement. “What a magic show” he sighed.
“Eat, drink, you will feel better. We have miles to go, you and I. We must keep up our strength, no?” and with this Spur opened the wine with his talons and sliced in a very handy fashion, the cheese. “You butter the bread, Kopec”