He is falling. The paper comes uncrushed in his fingers and he smiles. Bright girl… must have put it in when his cloak had slipped to the floor from of the corner of his curl-leaf desk.
The words hurt to read. So bright, the heat. So bright, the promises. So white. So white the words, like suns behind his eyes.
But he reads them.
“Grandfather, I understand.
Mamlaurea will know you, and so will I.
And we’ll be waiting.”
The Light comes for him, tearing everything away. Scattering his elements. And as the shadows of men and women gather at the crest of the bridge, they watch his body singe itself within the Loom, the blackening smile of a rose in flames, noting that, long after the great life-giving machine had digested the rest of his grey cloak, the page written in his granddaughter’s hand had been the last thing to sink beneath the waves.
In the wake of their failure, they all run away, not wishing to be Rassilon’s food. And so, no one is left to notice the shadow stooping down to pick up the…