A dark room, shadowed and silence. Nobody dared to answer, not after the man's crazed ravings. This was the tower above the railroad station. This was the central station of roundabout loops, under and above ground. Every subterranean track, and every montane, winding track. Even the long tracks that crossed the canyons and desert wastelands - towards the forgotten lands. They all came here, through the sprawling city. The one town that had not begun to decay.
The room was carpeted pompously, and adorned with rich tapestries beside the tinted windows. The windows, etched with ancient symbols of a past industrial age, looked out over the rich valley's edge to the north, and the wastelands to the north.
The stairs met the foot of the audience room, and there stood a frantic man, fearing no longer for the changing world but for his own life -
"Magistrate Hestler, I beg that you reconsider!"
The woman at the desk, upon a cushioned throne behind its bare oak surface, frowned. And she turned her empty gaze upon the man, "Guards, take this heretic away! To the dungeon with him. I wish never to hear his ranting tongue again."
Another man, a guard in rusty plated leather armour, held a gun to the head of the pleading man. A pistol of sorts, flaring out at the end.
Magistrate Hestler smiled from behind her desk, grin twisting her dark lips unpleasantly. The world is not changing. My cities are fine. The people are paying their taxes. He's nothing but a mad man. Hmmph. If the world were changing, surely I'd be the first to know.
Yet another man, in the shadows beside a window, had the audacity to speak, "Magistrate, a sandstorm is brewing on the horizon. Along the railroad tracks."
And her twisted grin fell, somber. Worried.