Oldest

Tiny dewdrops danced in his hair as he shifted slightly, the first movement he had made in two nights and a day. The pale bronze-amber of his skin shone as the sun caught him in its foremost beam and he inhaled deeply, drinking in the delicious taste of summer wine and flowers.

 

With a sigh, he stood and stretched before bowing low to the rising sun and spreading his delicate wings that seemed to be made of thinnest resin. Picking up his sleeveless tunic, he calmly slid his arms through the holes and pushed his wings through the slits up the back. The tunic didn't fasten at the front and showed his muscled chest and flat stomach as he hopped across to the next grass stalk.

 

Without making a sound, he proceeded across the grass stems, jumping and occasionally spreading his wings to glide a few extra centimetres. After a short while, he reached the edge of the grass strip and coasted down to the earth. Hunting around, he soon found his belt and strapped it around his middle under his tunic. He also pulled on a pair of thin slippers and grimaced gently as the material rubbed against his toes.

 

In accordance with tradition, he did not speak to anyone on his way to the temples. Though his serious countenance persuaded them that he was not approachable by anyone, anyway.

 

Are you here to see the Oldest?”

The boy nodded once and touched his mouth and his ear. The person by the door smiled in understanding and motioned inside.

 

The boy stepped inside the cool tunnel and trotted forwards, his slippers muffling the sound of his footsteps. The passageway widened out into a cavern and he slowly climbed the steps onto the dais. Standing on the exact centre, the boy spoke for the first time. His voice was surprisingly strong and he spoke confidently.

 

I have come, Oldest.”

 

Something uncoiled from the back of the cavern, rapidly growing until it filled the entire space with massive loops of shifting scales. A sharp, angular snout came forwards and an eye the size of the boy winked lazily.

Why have you come?” the voice made the boy want to claw at his ears but he clenched his hands and stared straight ahead.

I have sat on the hilltop for two nights and a day as you wished, Oldest and I have seen what you wish.”

It has happened?”

Yes, Oldest.”

Good, good. Tell me, boy.”

 

The boy fixed his gold eyes on the creature before him.

 

The world burns, Oldest.”

 

The End

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