Search Party

[Long description: A small sequential. In the first panel, Vetru and Dia find themselves at a bitter impasse. The middle spread depicts Dia careening into the heart of the firestorm, in search of Vetru. The final panel is of Vetru, alone.]



“What did I say this time?”

“Stop. Stop.” Dia punctuates her words with an unsteady lurch, causing Vetru to take back a step. “Stop talking to me. Stop projecting your failings onto me. I have nothing to offer you.”

“I wouldn't be so hard on yourself.”

“How do you expect me to-- to what? Help you? Infantile. You can't even help yourself.”

The Wanderer tosses their head back. “... Infantile? I'm as old as the dirt you're standing on.”

“And yet you act like a child!”

“You don't get to just--! I did this. I did this. I spilled my soul into this scarred earth and stitched up all the sutures. What have you done?”

The heath falls silent between them.

Vetru stands there for some time, beneath the juniper tree. Very slowly, they turn away and retreat into the great bank of wildflowers.

“Did you start it?” Dia is watching them out of her peripheries.

Vetru stops. “What?”

“The fire.”


“Where are they?”

Dia clips a few legs as she barrels through a small gathering of ghosts. Pale faces look down on her, a little dazedly, but they let her pass.

On her heels comes a Keeper. He speaks in soft but urgent tones to her, as if she is some nestling fledged too early from the tree. “You must understand. It is often best to leave them alone, when they go off on their own like...”

The Keeper's voice catches in the lungs he does not have. From out of the bloody noontide sun comes the acrid scent of smoke, and ash on the wind.

“Where are they?”

July 12, 2018


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