Isolated from his small community, Ziel must discover what has become of his love, even if it exposes a nasty underside of those around him.
Water drips off the tip of my nose like clockwork. Drip drip drip, its' cadence provides a contrapuntal accent to the erratic movement of the crowd below.
The skies cracked open, yesterday, for the first time in months. The entire town rejoiced. There is partying in the common. Someone tipped over a cask and Malgar's wine flows freely down the furrows circling the common. Diluted purple runs over black so parched it can't soak up the water.
I crouch in the bell-tower. No raider has come to cross the river since it went dry. I am but a boy, not yet old enough for the Seeking that would make me a man. So, I am given tower-duty. and, dutiful, I watch.
Overhead, lightning rips across the sky, illuminating the common in harsh reliefs. Malgar and Merris laugh with abandon unbecoming the elders. People get messy when they are drunk. But the rain does not wash away sin. Moments later, thunder shakes the buildings, sweeping in another torrential downpour.
My name is Ziel, named for the angel of solitude, he who presides over the death of kings. And, like my namesake, I suspect that I am alone, for Tsillah is not among those below.