sideways: [inside] boy looking upwards to next challenge (►we're coming back for more)
[personal profile] sideways
Title: Palamon's Last
Rating: G
Series: Destiny (Shin Malphur)
Wordcount: 375
Remarks: I've always found it curious Shin is referred to as a 'renegade' Hunter.

They seek me out sometimes. It’s not a task I mean to make easy, but they know my territory and they have the time, and I won’t be pushed out just for the sake of some peace and quiet. I’m not that old yet.

Most of them have only one question on their lips. I have no patience for it. Man and monster are gone, and no roses will grow out of the seed he left behind. They either don’t know the truth of what they’re asking after or they do, and both of those are good enough reasons for me to deny them.

Now and then, though, they come with something different on their mind. A seeking for my own sake, or at least that’s how they see it. Always bearing the same old questions.

Why not come to the City to join my brethren? What keeps me bound to these empty hills? And – here they always lean closer – how was it that the man who would be a monster fell to me?

To one such as you, they mean, and those who say it with suspicion are those easiest answered. The ones who lean in with wonderment or conspiracy in their eyes, the ones who claim kinship despite our differences – well, I’ve found they’re best granted some questions of their own.

Do they know what it means to kneel among the ashes of their home? To lose three times the fathers they were born with? To remember a life, a full life, and all the joy and sorrow it can contain?

No? Then that is why.

Do they know what these hills once sheltered? What it meant to live outside the silent grace of the shadow? Do they understand what they are sealing away from themselves as they raise walls higher about their favoured land?

No? For that is what.

Have they lived their lives in fear? With the rabbit-edge awareness that everything they are and everything they hope to be can be easily unravelled? Knowing a cut may become an infection, or a break leave them infirm? Do they know what it is to be finite? Fragile? Human?

To know one bullet is all it takes?

He didn’t.

And that is how.

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Shale

August 2017

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