by Shinko Hisada (身固之妥)
illustrated by marourin
It was snowing as they approached Kale’s home village, but the fat, lazy flakes that drifted down were a vast improvement over the raging storms they’d encountered in the last two mountain passes. Even Kale was chilled to the bone, and Jaren had been spending magic to heat their tent each night so they wouldn’t freeze to death.
Everything was exactly as Kale remembered it, as if he’d left the day before and not almost three years ago. It was a little eerie, but it did make it easy to navigate despite the heavy blanket of snow that smothered everything.