Prologue

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Journey’s end. The promise. The hope.

        Tell me again, Ama. About the light.

I search my memories. A dream. A story. A blurred remembrance.

        I was smaller than you, child.

The line between truth and sustenance unravels. The need.The hope. My own grandmother telling stories to fill me because there was nothing more. I look at this child, windlestraw, a full stomach not even visiting her dreams. Hopeful. Waiting. I pull her thin arms, gather the feather of flesh into my lap.

        Once upon a time, my child, there was a princess no bigger than you. The world was at herf                 ingertips. She commanded, and the light obeyed. The sun, moon, and stars knelt and rose at               her touch. Once upon a time . . .

Gone. Now there is only this golden- eyed child in my arms. That is what matters. And the journey’s end. The promise. The hope.

         Come, my child. It’s time to go.

Before the scavengers come.

The things that last. The things that remain. The things I dare not speak to her.

         I’ll tell you more as we walk. About before. 

        Once upon a time . . .

                                                                 —The Last Testaments of Gaudrel

 

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