…Metallic blue piping ran at strangely oblique angles, stretching deep into the ever darkening glass cliff-face, sparkling in the sunlight when at odd times it emerged like some long forgotten swimmer up for air, jutting rudely into the open spaces a thousand feet above the softly shimmering, golden sands below.
Away in the distance men clothed in white mingled with the green of the hills as they ran and dived, swung and caught, oblivious to all who watched them perform their curious ritual.
Smiling to himself, Earl Grae gazed out across a deliciously calm, strawberry red sea.
Some sound over his shoulder… three of the power-station’s security guards, intent upon destruction, emerged from the cliff-face and headed out towards him. He turned and casually stepped from the outcrop of reinforced steel that had been his viewpoint.
Free from its countless, tiresome folds for a moment, his voluminous black cloak billowed forth as he plummeted to earth, only to metamorphose into wings the span of an Albatross’, and caught upon the up-draught, Earl Grae soared gracefully skyward away from all danger, however imaginary.
High above the cliff-tops he went, ever upwards. Like a mighty Condor he flew lazily through the warm summer sky, gliding languidly on the streams and jets of hot air; a translucent impostor upon the thermals.
And then, shortening his wing span he slowly began to spiral downwards in great sweeping arcs. Gradually he descended until when no more than sixty feet from the beach he levelled out, skimming the retreating shoreline. As he flew a semi-ridiculous love song permeated his consciousness, wandering aimless for a moment before finding form two bodies, warm in embrace, passed by below, melting into the sun bleached sands as he wheeled away. Their conversation carried on the breeze…
“Will you ever stop loving me?”
“No. I will never stop loving you.”
“Whatever I do to you?”
“Whatever you do to me, I will never stop loving you.”
“But what if I no longer loved you?”
“Even if you no longer loved me, I would not stop loving you.”
“What, even if I were to take away your life?”
“If you were to take away my life, in the very instant that I died I would love you still.”
“Mmmm,” she sighed, “I wonder.”
– Extract taken from, The Aetheling Thing