Long ago — longer than any of you here have been alive — I watched the island of Dumaz vanish beneath the Blue. It had been a small island, colonized by the Barathi and covered with vineyards. My friend and lover, Melli — she who learned alongside me at my master’s knee — remained, even after the rest of the colonists had fled. She wanted to see what lurked beneath the cerulean surface, and had wrought such tools and magics that she thought would protect her from the Blue if but for a few moments. She grinned as she asked me to wait for her return.

From my small skyship, I watched as Dumaz sank in the dawn light. I watched as Melli stood within her circles on the highest peak of the island. I watched as the Blue lapped up over her feet, her knees, her torso. I watched as
she laughed, unconcerned. I watched her head leave a ripple as she descended. I watched her hand wave jauntily at me before it disappeared into the Blue.

I waited until sundown. She didn’t return. I searched with all our arts — the Merhorse, the Basilisk, even the Dragon. The Blue itself lashed out at me, each time.

I waited a year, for naught.

Now the World is lacking the sweet wines of Dumaz and the tinkling laughter of my fair Melli.

Gold-Eyed Niko, Sha-Ku Koldun, before the Fraternity of Night

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