Life of an Explorer.

Story: The Assistant to Marco Polo

A work of fiction by Rachel Knepp

Words to use: travel, world, seas, map, danger, mongols, china, court, ship, route, explorer, Venice, rivalry, risk, fame.

Being the assistant to Marco Polo, the famous explorer was so exciting. Enrico dreamed of travel.  Seeing the world, marking off places on the map that he longed to see. He dreamed of going to China to  experience the magic of the orient and the spices that brought much fortune to the land. He wanted the excitement and danger of exotic places East. He heard so much about the overland road to china and the bandits and thieves who took every opportunity to take what they could from the travelers. His imagination raced with so many potential events that were likely to occur on his travels with the famous explorer Marco Polo. 

This will be the first time he has left Venice for the longest expedition of his life. The route was treacherous and he knew the risk to his life but he was seeking fame and fortune for himself. The route was set. There was some rivalry for his position but he had won the day.

It was a very long trip, 3 years. They made extensive plans and hoped the provisions would hold out because they would probably not find much along the way. Fortunately, the desert and tall mountain passes were inhabited by people. When the group of explorers finally made their way to the east, they were welcomed by the court of Kublai Khan, the great Mongol ruler. The ruler took them as part of his court. 

He was happy to have experienced so much but missed his home. They did not go back the same way but over vast seas. The trip home by shipincluded many stops as well and they had a job to do, transporting a princess to meet her husband.  They finally reached Venice again to learn that the Mongol king had died and the empire was in turmoil. 

His experience in the East had left an indelible mark on him. He was forever changed. Forever wanting to see more of the world along with the danger and excitement of exploring. He would often tell tales to those Venetians who also longed for adventure as he did and inspired many to take their own trips to far off lands. Eventually this faithful assistant married and settled down in to tranquil domesticity. His death was marked by his family in solemn prayers. He was not so widely known as Marco Polo but he died old and satisfied with all that he experienced. 

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