Midnight Mercies

4th Day of Harvest Season, 342 Years After Mourning Today marks the second day Brother Trinn and I walked among the families of the sick. He pressed a crisp sheet of baked wheat mixed with bark into eager hands, while I followed behind and offered sips of weak ale from a ladle. The refugees knowContinue reading “Midnight Mercies”

A New Beginning

2nd Day of Harvest Season, 342 Years After Mourning When I heard the footsteps, I knew they didn’t belong to Hilla; her feet traveled a different path, one filled with the soft lift of the sun and hope. Two wardens took her place, shuffling down the damp, stone halls. Silently, they dragged me out of myContinue reading “A New Beginning”

Answered and Unanswered Questions

1st Day of Harvest Season, 342 Years After Mourning “Twin rowans guard the bend where the river turns east. Count off fourteen paces—nay, double that for your young legs—and you’ll find the overhang. If you don’t see it immediately, sweep away the vines. Sleep there. In the morning, follow the river east. Look for myContinue reading “Answered and Unanswered Questions”

More than Death

The 30th Day of Ripening Season, 342 years After Mourning The wind that blows through the plague-ridden streets of Aramas carries more than death—it carries defeat. I have walked under its yoke for far too long. It circles the city, caressing the stone walls like a jealous lover, refusing to leave. Yet as I steppedContinue reading “More than Death”

Starvation

The 27th Day of Ripening Season, 342 years After Mourning We are starving. The storerooms are empty, the grain all but vanished.  The larders are filled with dust, while the abandoned gardens wither under a sticky heat. It is not as if there is a shortage of food. Wheat stretches toward the sky, not yetContinue reading “Starvation”

Sofie’s Plea

The 21st day of Ripening Season, 342 years After Mourning When the snows melted and the days became longer, when we cast off our heavy winter cloaks and the heady smells of the first blossoms drifted in from the windows, we had twenty-four acolytes. In addition to the youngsters, we had ten priests, three priestessesContinue reading “Sofie’s Plea”

Games and Mercy

The 17th day of Ripening Season, 342 years After Mourning Hope dwindles further with each soul that passes. We lost fourteen today: seven men, three women and four children. Their names have been recorded in the ledger. I have given young Barly the unwelcome task of carting them away before the heat sours them. A hardContinue reading “Games and Mercy”