Gleam and Maria grew more and more friendly. He told her about his life in the clouds suspended from the belt of mountain peaks encircling Labyrinthia. And about Hermogenes’ toil—from dawn to sunset—infusing new life into the tree trunks that he carved. He, Gleam, worked with him every day. He also helped him with all the household chores, where the lack of a woman was ever more noticeable-since losing his wife, his father had not remarried—And he told her about the mockery of the condors. Swooping down to watch him. Peeping through doors and windows. Laughing at his solitude and abandonment. Despite everything, two of the youngest ones took a liking to him. Sometimes they took him for rides. Perhaps out of pity. Or because they had tired of the others’ mockery. They had grabbed him by the shoulders with their claws and flown him over the mountains. He saw the snow-covered slopes close-up. The fiery circus of the volcanic craters. The ghostly lakes in mists of silence.
KeywordsDust Cane Sapphire Ghost Defend
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