Floods and Flowers

When I was a young lady in the last stronghold of humanity
I was told that the city walls would always protect us, as they had for all of human memory,
Yet, I found that safety was no way to live when, one night, I saw a great beast in a circus tent.
Though he was well fed and loved, I heard him cry out for more than contentment.

From his youth forward, he would entertain honored guests from all corners of Tyria-
Rewarded with fish and salted meats, he grew very fat and his eyes became his eyes:
Listless as the low tide on a calm night-
My family was no different, save my youngest sister.

Lillica and I saw the slow death that the walls would bring.
Our father and mother, like the bear, were dying and with every moon, my heart sunk.
I prayed to the Gods, as the orphan I was, and we all were;
My wishes brought a storm.

There has been nothing like a centaur raid my whole life.
An army of Charr will march on your gates,
A dragon will creep and crawl, impending, but slow.
A centaur raid is not like those;
It is lightning.
It is the force of an old giant behind the head of a pin.
They do not reason and they ride like falcons on the dive-
Always forward and then evaporating, then falling like rain someplace else.
They are the Storm.

Lightning flashed and timber blazed.
A flood washed over the village and screams replaced the usual violins-
Played by the street urchins.
In the closet of a burning bakery, I hid.
My flesh steamed and my tears evaporated as soon as they had been shed.

In the darkest corner, in the brightest blaze, I felt happy.
The Gods, in their uncanny wisdom, had brought me the freedom I had prayed for.
Laughing, far away, tickled my ears and filled me with the joy.
This, I thought, will make a good story for my grandchildren.

My clothes were gone, consumed just as the walls around me, and in my nudity I was finally free.
Instantly, I felt myself lifted, quite literally, and the pain subsided;
I smelled the circus, again;
Fish and beef on grilled on a wood fire.

The laughing became louder and louder.
It drowned out the screams and blurred my vision.
I may have gone blind to the world if I did not see one last horror:
My dear sister, perched upon a bloodied pike, and finally free of the walls.

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