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Dove sono?

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Lovey-Dove watched him, her kind human, fall away from her with incomprehension, fluttering after him as best as she could, but her wings were suddenly sparking and trembling in the magic surge and she couldn’t control her own descent into the chaos of the world below. She spiraled, trying with instinctive and remembered control to take advantage of warmer thermals to slow her fall. It worked, somewhat, but the wind currents were strange and erratic, taking her far from where she wanted to go. The mechanical parts of her wing snapped straight, feathers flying from her body but her wing holding true. What providence sent her safely through the crackling air all around her, Lovey-Dove neither knew nor cared, only flying straight and true to the first home she’d ever known.

Where am I?

As she hovered over the quaking city, parts of it fell into the yawing chasm that slowly widened until it threatened to gulp her down whole, like some huge predaceous animal. The city of Vector tumbled into the maw, and the earth’s fangs rose up to swallow her too. She fluttered desperately, knowing dimly there could be no escape, and began the long descent into what was suddenly no abyss but instead rose to meet her, shooting straight up in a fountain of tortured stone and steel.

The force of the uprushing air pushed her back, just enough to regain her equilibrium, the internal gyros and sensors of her wing and possibly kindly magical help from some long-lost Esper friend to birds lending her powers of flight beyond her own faltering abilities. She gained height, spiraling upward into a sky darkening into a deep reddish gloom, gleaming with magic as she continuously healed herself just enough to keep going.

The city-become-tower below her continued to rise and rise, going higher than she’d ever seen any human edifice reach. It encroached into her domain now, and light poured from the tower like some solid malignant presence, eating the land far below. It pulled at her, at the magic within her, as demons burst forth from the cracks of the earth, from the skies above. One small pigeon could not prevail against so much, especially without her protector, yet Lovey-Dove bravely pushed onward, floating through chaos, one last small patch of blue left in the sky as she turned from the dreadful, delightful pull of the light and homed on the direction of her other home.

Where am I?

Her desperate eyes gazed at the horizon, at the smoke still rising from so many places. She’d lost her bearings, her human, her home. The only thing she had left was her wings and her determination and the thought, clear through to her bones, that she must find that place where she would be safe. That home where the glow of her human’s magic was never dimmed, never hidden. She struck out to the northwest, aiming for Thamasa.

At last she landed. The earth had subsided for now, but the city she was in lay in ruins. It wasn’t Thamasa. She didn’t know where it was, but as the dogs ran in the streets and a demon roared from the sluggish river, as a lone, too-thin and desperate pregnant cat stalked her relentlessly for a meal, she took to the skies again and flew onward. In this new world of ruin and woe, hope could only be her human now. As she winged on through the sky, avoiding the demons who would see her blue dimmed like all the rest, dodging the brilliant light that stabbed from the heart of madness, she sought him with all her heart and all the hope in her battered and failing body, knowing that when she found him, the question she asked again and again would be answered with, “I am home.”