The Knot

Talitha ran through the cargo bay singing. A simple tune, she skipped to the beat and spun around a rail and danced around the engine’s console. She passed right by a narrow alcove, in between two bays. She didn’t notice anything hanging in the shadows — only crinkled her nose absently at the foul, acidic scent.

A lump of bone and dissolving flesh hung there, that had once been … many things. A squire, a traveler, a hero, a monster, a murderer, an uncle, a terror, a friend.  A knot at the center of him was all that remained — holding out against the decay, the rot. The knot heard the song, and finally began to unwind.

But, he did not die. The shadow poison fell away, washed clean by a little girl’s song.

With the poison gone, his flesh remembered and returned. Green sparks sizzled and popped.

Izus rose from the tatters of fabric and twine.He patted his chest experimentally, and looked around for a moment.  He snapped his fingers, and a brown cloak jumped to attention. It wriggled down the hallway, the steps and across the cargo bay, and into the little alcove where the villain had lay dying. It folded itself neatly over his arm, and Izus tossed it over his shoulders, fastening the clasp without a thought.

He could still hear the girl’s song.

“Goodbye.” he said, and stepped through the world and was gone.