SHIELD: THE PAST
Shield swam along with the current. He had done this most of his young life. The current embraced him. If he just let it do what it wanted to, he wouldn’t have to accept responsibility. If everything was predestined, then the Light of Joy was supposed to be damaged, and couldn’t have happened any other way.
He liked to think the same way the acolytes who worshiped the moon did. The idea of a celestial being being responsible for all the problems he had was equally as appealing as destiny. But he had never seen the moon. He believed the teachings, and he could see the results of the moon in the ebb and flow of his world, but to see it for himself…
But if everything was guided by the invisible hand of the moon, what was the purpose of existence? Shield scowled at his predicament. The acolytes could answer his questions, but was he even welcome to return to the city? Would his brethren accept him back into the fold after the destruction he had caused?
His eyes scanned the depths, and he felt, more than saw someone slowly descend through the dark world that matched his thoughts. He twisted and kicked a harsh angle against the current, propelling him toward the sinking figure.
As she came into view, Shield locked his eyes with strange woman. She had black hair, it seemed to be tied at one end, and the rest formed tight tendrils, attempting to escape with the current. She smiled, and tilted her head to one side as she studied him. Her skin wasn’t translucent like the rest of his people, but was a bronze color.
Shield felt the words in his head. Such power was limited to the Acolytes and the Dons. He knew he lacked the fortitude to reply to the stranger, so he tried to convey that thought with his eyes.
The woman kicked her feet to slow her decent. She twisted elegantly, and matched his trajectory. She reached hesitantly for his neck, and the apprehension was clear on her face. Shield nodded, and bowed his head slightly to signal acquiescence.
She held him tenderly by the back of his head, and he couldn’t help but stare at her dark skin. When their foreheads made contact, he was able to talk with her.
“Greetings,” he replied.
“What is your name child?”
“I’m not a child,” he retorted, “I’m a Shield.”