The Mountain’s Scar

They both approached the crack together. Her little body pressed against the mountain’s edge, hovering just out of reach of her father’s protective hand. Eris craned her head as far as her neck would allow. A pool of water glinted in the moonlight, but a wide shadow stood in the distance, its edges jagged and irregular. A fleet of ships? A village? Eris ducked under her father’s hand, approaching the inside of the crack.

“What’s over there?” she asked.

Her father’s arms seized her waist and lifted her off the ground. “No, we have to go back,” he said, hoisting her to his chest. “We have to leave for the City.” He patted her, turning away from the mountain, and looked towards the North Star.

The further he walked, the more the crack faded into the darkness. Eris squinted until the poplar leaves engulfed the mountain whole, the shadow finally disappearing from her sight.

For a moment, she thought her father glanced back too.

Thank you to my patrons:

Heather, Tamar, Val and Lexi.