Kasim put his hands to his ears and roared.
“Be gone!” Ilma barked. “Go into the lights.”
“No!” Kaleigha and Kahrim shouted at the same time.
“I cannot continue,” Ilma sounded perturbed. “The knowledge will destroy him.”
“You don’t seem bothered by this,” Kahrim observed. He moved over to Kasim and folded the sobbing man into his cloak. “I will take him back to the village. Stay here and learn what you can.”
Kaleigha did not object. She was a step away from breaking down herself.
“Good,” Ilma came closer and lowered her voice. “It no longer matters how I got trapped here, we must get out.”
Kaleigha nodded in agreement.
“ Take my hands and close your eyes,” Ilma ordered.
Kaleigha closed her eyes and could see Ilma on the bed again. The woman’s skin was brown, not sooty and her hair rested in a large, white pouf atop her head. Ilma’s frame was thinner and the clothing seemed far too big. Kaleigha paid closer attention to the room. Everything else lay under a thick layer of dust. Half the overhead lights were blown out and the papers were curled with age.
Kaleigha opened her eyes and let out a cry. She was back in the forest.
“Shh, shhh,” Ilma cooed. “That was very good. You are evolved past anything in this city.”
“Why do I feel so strange when you say the word F- fa-fai,” but Kaleigha could not get the word out.
“Fadian,” Ilma said. The word sent a jolt through Kaleigha. “Because that is what you are.”