For this occasion, nothing less than my snow white gryphon will suffice. As I prepare to land on the steps of Stormwind Keep, I try to assemble the words that I am going to say to the young king. But my mind is blank.
I found the compass, off the shore of the Broken Isles. The compass his father, King Varian Wrynn, lost in the battle, moments before his death. My chest is tight with grief, and I remain standing just outside the gate of the keep.
As I approach the throne, Anduin smiles. But then he sees the pain in my face and his features set in the impassive mask he has learnt to adopt. I kneel before him, holding up the precious memento. Our gazes meet, clouded with sorrow.
The skies might be leaden today, but don’t let the weather fool you, for the City by the Lake is impervious to it. Of course the monochrome dampens her beauty, but at the same time, it deepens it. You need to look a little closer now, come a little nearer; suddenly, you realise that this place is not what you thought at all. In the light, you see only through the hasty eyes of youth, touching on shimmering surfaces full of temptation. Now, that the gloaming obscures the City’s evident charms, your gaze may focus inward, and follow the mysteries.
He has tuned his motorbike to a low, grumbling thunder. It is black, as is his attire, down to the impenetrability of his visor. He is therefore heard before he is seen, an approaching menace, the onset of fury. He is heard, even, over the din of the City.
But the City is unforgiving, and she plays favourites; he is not one of them. She might have paved his way, but all the while she is raising obstacles in his path. Her roads are winding, her inclines steep.
He roars as best he can, and the City, unimpressed, turns away.
He dotes on our daughter like a besotted puppy. We just came home from the hospital today. „I cannot wait for the moment she brings home her first boyfriend“, my husband suddenly says. „I will tower over him and demand to know his intentions.“
I chuckle. He will tower, at 197cm. „If she is anything like you, and I’d wager she will turn out to be, then she will be way ahead of you. She will find the tallest, biggest basketball player, and she will present him to you as her guy, just to outfox you.“
More than anything, he looks proud at her future resourcefulness. „I guess she would.“
This little dog knows where he’s going. You can always tell who’s the boss. And it’s the little dogs, the small hunting breeds in particular, that like to walk their humans. This guy is no different: he knows he leads. He is alert, vigilant. He knows he is the superior animal, and with great power comes great responsibility. He takes his charge very seriously. One of those large, friendly, goofy dogs crosses his path and wants to make his acquaintance, but he has no time for frivolities. His is a life of duty. His human is wise to depend on him so.