Sweet life-time apace was ebbing from him, sorrowing for home-return.

Eramis anchored her Ketch on the shadowed side of an asteroid and cut the engines. She gazed out the viewport at a wrecked House of Wolves Ketch lying half-buried under the rubble of the Tangled Shore.

Her reverie was broken by Kylaksis, her lieutenant. "Eramiskel. Your plan is working," the Vandal chittered gleefully. "A Reef patrol is inbound, sweeping for nests. If we board them quickly, we can take the ship intact."

"No," Eramis replied, still gazing out the viewport. "Let them pass."

"It's a Corsair patrol vessel," Kylaksis insisted, his chitters staccato with frustration. "Even as scrap, it's worth—"

"LET THEM PASS," Eramis thundered, whirling to face the Vandal. "The time of The Shipstealer has gone."

"All that matters now," Eramis said, "is where we are when the end arrives." The Kell of Darkness activated her transmat, leaving a frustrated Kylaksis alone on the bridge.

Eramis rematerialized in the wrecked House of Wolves Ketch. The walls of the ship were pitted by bullet holes and desiccated Hive growths; only Hive and Lightbearers had dared to enter since it was shot down during the Reef Wars. She shook her head. What a waste.

She stepped over Thrall and Acolyte corpses, picking her way carefully to the ship's navigation. Once inside, she opened an access panel and pulled out a centuries-old data core. She sifted through the archives until she found it: a detailed map of Riis, the Eliksni home world.

It was the same map that Eramis's mate, Athrys, had followed out of Sol. It even included the habitable zones she'd tabbed as potential landing sites.

By now, Athrys might be Kell of her own settlement, living happily alongside their grown hatchlings. Or they might all be long-dead. In truth, Eramis hadn't wondered at either possibility for decades.

But ever since she saw the Witness disappear into its portal, Eramis could think of little else. All her prior aspirations were made suddenly small. Eliksni solidarity, revenge against the Traveler, enmity with the Humans… they were all irrelevant.

If a second Whirlwind was her fate, Eramis would suffer it as she had the first: with Athrys by her side.

Nessus – 6

Category: Eliksni

Opulent Duelist Helm

Lightkin Cloak

Category: Eramis

Outbreak Perfected

Nameless Midnight

Category: Whirlwind