Shone upon by pale moonlight Gela and Crys sat in a small cover he had quickly conjured up with branches from a tree, which he then covered with snow as to not reveal their position. He didn’t dare go any further on the sled. “They can use magic.” he looked up from his feet, her turquoise eyes glowed in the dark telling him exactly where she sat. “I don’t understand.”

“They can use magic, to call forth wind and snow, that is how they must have covered their tracks.” although the rest of her face was in darkness he could see in her eyes that she was incredibly sad, not only for her own losses, but his as well. “And the fire?”

After a long pause Gela sighed, she shrugged her shoulders, a movement he felt in the narrow room of the cover. “I think they can’t conjure up fire, it would be against their nature. But then again, I heard human mages can create fire, although it might burn them.” also sighing Crys looked back down onto the pitch black ground. Images of the tormented bodies of his family appeared before him. With a burning sensation tears shot into his eyes. He felt her hand reaching for his face. “Calm yourself.” she whispered, pulling him close to herself. She needed to be held, as did he, it didn’t take long for her to feel his arms wrap around her too.

Comforted by the presence of the other, both of them fell into a light sleep, alerted by each rustling twig outside the cover.

Plumes of smoke rose from the villages chimneys. Snow levels in the valley were not as high as on the slopes of the mountains, allowing for Crys to walk without the use of snowshoes. Gela sat on the sled that he pulled since the land was not steep enough for them to ride it into the village. “We’ll go to the magistrate’s house! He’ll know what to do!” he yelled over his shoulder. Bearing a bittersweet expression Gela nodded, hoping the fungals had not made it into town before they did. “Crys?” the called turned his head in the direction the call had come from. Another young man approached from the forest that stretched further down the valley, he carried a deer on a sled. “What madness drove you to brave the deep snow?”

“Madness my dear Galen, madness.” he sighed pulling the sled with Gela further towards the village explaining the reasons for his presence in a few sentences.