The Depths of Rivillin – Short Story
I wake and there’s Aller sitting criss-cross on the floor next to a woman with short-cut blonde and black hair. I close my eyes again, wish they’ll go away. When I open them again, Aller is holding his five Liyer cards out above his hands. They’re made of white fire. The dyvion fire. The fire Aller himself once swore he would never touch.
The cards are blank, waiting for Aller’s instruction. They flicker on the edges like candles in the wind, shimmer in and out on their faces like rain against a window. I think of the broken window downstairs and of the mostly empty town and of the Scattered that chased me. All there because of the dyvion fire.
Aller waves a hand and all but one card vanishes. He taps the remaining card with the burnt knuckle of his pointer finger and the single images light across in quick succession and stop on the purple dot. The card dissipates and reforms as a bubble ghost. Its pink-purple body cinched like a ballon on four sides and its eyes are black beads without pupils. The ghost floats up and presses itself to the ceiling.
I tell Aller he’s the king of pointless magic. He grins. The woman beside him knocks twice on the ground. Aller beckons the bubbleghost with his hand, reeling the thing all the way to his shoulder. Aller and the woman turn around and leave.
I stay in bed.
There’s a certain glory to the way light comes into a dying town. I can see it through the window that’s next to the end of the bed. The rays of the sun streak in and seem to hold a silence among the buildings where so many people once roamed. That light streaks down and brings a semi-solidity to the air. Nothing wants to move anymore.
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