This will be a simple story, spawned from a simple prompt of a simple word called snow.
I set my pen down, turn to the window.
Snow is falling.
I open the windows, the white-framed blocks of glass spreading like angel wings into the cold air, and step into the silent storm beyond. The wind catches me from nowhere as holly drips onto the snow beneath me. I remember: glass is not solid. Glass is liquid. Over centuries the windows cry, sagging and wilting in the sunlight, holding out the snow, keeping warm a house uninhabited except for ghosts and phantoms long since remembered by anyone.
Adye hadn’t been long in the city before he found himself roaming the streets in his brown robes of coarse woven fibers. He hadn’t been in the crags of Tiir Enath long before even his pale skin became covered in the perpetual soot that drifted down from the Old Gods. He hadn’t been in the city long before he came to know how cruel it could be to be so far from home.
Home was the white mountains of Tenn Eldrath where he had been born and raised. The skies were clear by day, and by night clouds rolled in and blanketed the mountains in another layering of fine dust. Houses were built of snow shaped into bricks and formed into large townships where hundreds of his people settled for meals and gatherings together. The men tilled the snow orchards, where nut-bearing trees able to withstand the icy air flourished, and the women at home reared the children and cared for the sick. All hands were one hand in Tenn Eldrath. All homes were one home in Tenn Eldrath. All people were one people in Tenn Eldrath.
In Tiir Enath, this was not the case. No one spoke without business and no one ventured without cause. No one met eyes without menace or asked of you in the street lest you were blocking their path–and then they did not ask, they yelled and clamored and forced you to move.