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{ elvhenanrising }

The embers burn low as Fen’Harel enters the camp. He steps into the dimming orange ring like a ghost, his passing noted only by a gentle nod from the watchmen.

Once his comings and goings would have been lauded by the People, they would lay their hands in his footprints and pray for the Wolf’s blessing. Now only a few notice as he sits by the fire of his own making, tossing branches in. They’re slow to burn, but a quick snap of the fingers sends the flame glowing green. As it catches the branches it burns orange again, and Fen’Harel leans back with a sigh.

He is no longer divine, but walks among them. The Wolf of the People, the teeth of the rebellion.

It is a thought that Fen’Harel still turns over in his head. Not so long ago this would have been a nightmare, yet it is Fen’Harel’s reality. He is still settling into his new name and discovering the realities of his new role. Purpose is a strange thing to have, but he will cling to it with all his might.

He hears a twig splinter, and his ears snap forward. The whole camp tenses, then relaxes in unison. The guard recognises the face of the man that walks out from the shadow of two trees. And, with a sickening drop of his stomach, Fen’Harel realises– so does he. A man once bound in chains enters unfettered.

                     But Fen’Harel does not know his name.

Teeth draw across chapped lips, indecision stills the Dread Wolf’s breath. He considers pretending as if he does not notice the familiar stranger, but the act would feel all too familiar to one of another man. A man he no longer is. He waits, arms draped over legs that shake with anticipation. Every so often one foot bounces, bare toes pulling faint lines in the dry dirt. He remembers the crimes this unbound elf was accused of: arrogance and pride. They saw a slave whose very existence insulted them, he had seen a god rising to his true form. In the end, they had all been wrong.

“You are the one who gave himself wings.” When he at last finds the courage to speak he hears his voice in his ears, heavy and hollow in a quiet campsite. “I am glad you now have the space to stretch them.”