In a land with nothing but snow and stone and sky, a man and a woman gazed upon the sunlit ruins of a temple.

“And so the girl’s life becomes fuel for the sun,” said the man, “and the cycle begins anew.”

“I told you this world wouldn’t end,” said the woman.

“Not yet,” said the man, “but in time, all things must end.”

“So you’ve always said, dear heart,” said the woman.

For a while they stood in silence, watching the sun above and the world below. At last, it was the man who turned to go.

“So soon?” asked the woman. “Couldn’t we rest a moment longer?”

“You know the answer,” said the man. “There are preparations to be made.”

The woman sighed. “So be it,” she said. “For however long you wish to play this game, I will join you until the end.”

“If you must,” said the man. “Goodbye, Ruuzael.”

“Goodbye, Noriiel,” replied the woman. “I’ll see you again when the next Harbinger is born.”