I walked away from the Flare that had once been Scorpion, away from Tal-hedran and toward the deepest parts of the desert. I stumbled in the sand, weeping as much as Frog had when we were children in the manor of stone. I had seen myself, and I was empty, no more than a vessel for my father’s belief.
She leaves the concubine boy sprawled against the parapet and turns to the estuary, so that he falls on her right and vanishes from awareness. She knows he is still there, of course; she is not touched. But she cannot make herself know it, cannot make herself grasp that he still exists. Her mind insists that he has been snatched away, drawn off-stage.