Fleet as feathers in a squall.
Through the night’s middle-dark the disciple flees her careless handiwork, deeper into the Opal Quarter’s warren of wending ways and lanes.
Pausing after mere heartbeats in the narrow cleft of a rotten wall, breath billowing a nimbose halo from the unfelt cold. She lifts her hand and regards the parching, now lifeless heart-stuff sadly flaking from the eerie smoothness of her finger-tips.
A thoughtless, feral flick of the tongue tasting again the muted copper and rust. Mere russet painting now, the vital heat robbed by the ragged cold of her momentary storm.
Feeling blandly ill, she frowns and rubs her fingers firmly across the murky fabric of her garb, scraping away any remainder. And any reminder of her fleeting recklessness.
She has before this robbed others of their lives. For purpose both noble, and ignoble alike.
But never before with such unspeakable agency.
With such tempest-graceful inhumanity.
Settling snow-softly to her knees, she draws a slick water-skin from out her concealing folds and plucks the waxy cork from its neck. The sudden-sweet fragrance of milk is heady to her hunting-hound sharp nose.
But this is not to imbibe, but to pour.
Gently she wets her fingers with a dribbling of the pale libation, whispering.
Sanna’sh, forgive my slaughter.
The broken vessel under the pall.
Mother into thy pressing
Milky spark, fall.
She cups the shallow pool tenderly as though it were a dying lark, desiring the succour of sheltering fingers, before allowing the warming-sweet liquid to drip to the moss-slick stonework at her knees.
Now every sensation is edged and honed.
Fine and terrible.
She reflects with a melancholy ten-fold sharper than any who have never known Rebirth might contain.
There will be very much more milk for you Mother, before this dawn…
Like a ribbon of mist, she stands and drifts whisper-swift into the waiting night.