If you met Arun when he first came to Kandra, and said that one day he’d sit beside a pool in a clearing and tell the story of his life, he wouldn’t thank you for it. Stories and poems belonged to a past he’d worked very hard to forget. And if you told him his audience would be Night itself, he’d probably laugh and walk away.
Then again, if you’d met him when he was thirteen years old and said that instead of becoming a farmer like his father, he’d find himself on an extraordinary journey that would take him far from his hut in the valley to places he could never have dreamed of, he wouldn’t have believed you either. Although he’d have liked the idea; he’d always longed for the glamour and excitement of the wider world.
His older self knew better. That journey was no quest for high adventure but a shattering of everything he’d ever known. From desert plains to fabled cities, he’d embark on a desperate search that would change his life utterly. He’d discover the value of friendship, and the meaning of home and family. And he’d learn the hardest lesson of all: that love and happiness come at a terrible cost.
And if you sit beside Arun as he finishes his tale, he’ll tell you there is nothing more to say. He’d be wrong. There is a decision to be made, one final choice that could transform his life. But will he have the courage to make it?