Heir of Depravity

Blighted Dawn

Castle Mechi

Province of Mechi, Rodakrov

~

The disadvantages of living in the Mad Lands were more copious than the snow that infested the kingdom not quite year-round. The quarrying of the mines of the north depended on the generosity of the sun, which never seemed so generous. The number of livestock and crops expected to be consumed throughout the year had to be doubled, so as to account for the losses that would occur during the successive bouts of sub-freezing wind and storms. And, of course, the spirits – the wine imported from the south barely lasted through the snow season. No courier from the summer lands would dare trek north at the end of the snow season, no matter the offered payment. Even the simplest of minds at the farthest stretches of the continent knew what followed the snow season in the Mad Lands: the ice season. Even if their courage and greed trumped their fear, however, wine wouldn be enough to warm the body, not during the ice season. Thats why we winter lands had our own domestic spirits, utilizing wheat rather than the grapes of the south. Still, the supply was nearly as unstable as the promise of summer.

The cold, though, it was a blessing. It preserved bodies perfectly.

My stomach burst with warmth, my lungs swelling with laughter as I looked down at the body. Its eyes were wide, its hands sprawled over its neck, as if desperately clutching for air. Beside it, on the wooden bedside table, a pewter cup I had never seen before was overturned, containing nothing but mere drops of the liq

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