Messenger: a 150-word exercise with Orval and Lily

MESSENGER

“You said Death called the Dracoisi,” I say. “You cannot believe I did such a thing.”

“You. Death. Does it matter?” Now Orval’s teeth chatter. He wraps his arms around his sides, leaning against the wall.

Eventually he slumps to the floor, sleeping feverishly. I slip his grandmother’s pillow under his head. As the evening shadows darken his brow, I leave him to walk in the cool of the abandoned city.

No one lives in these perfect homes now. In the deepening twilight they glimmer in all the shades of blue, empty and lonely, but I—I am not alone.

No sound warns me, no Night One’s hunting call or rush of wings. Instead, I feel the warmth of a messenger’s mind as he lands on one foot beside me.

“The Dracoisi have taken Egon,” he says. “We have an ally, but we must act quickly to rescue him.”

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