But if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like nothing changed at all?
And if you close your eyes, does it almost feel like you've been here before?
It was impossible to escape the noise of Algade. No matter what far-away corner of the city people sought, there was always a melody of music, laughter, and muffled chatter just on their tail. In fact, one could stand on the other side of the great wall and still hear the sounds as they spilled from various shops and inns. Though the frontliners had only cleared the floor recently, there was some novelty about being half-way to the top. Perhaps that was why so many players had flocked to the city, making it the second most populated location in the game. With so many people, escape from such ruckus was impossible.
But there was one spot where the the roar was strained to a mere murmur. In a neighborhood dominated by shops open predominantly during the day, a rooftop lurked high in the shadows. By no means was it a sizable platform, and the countless potted plants that were scattered about did nothing to make it appear larger. Wedged against one ledge was a small wire table, flanked by two chairs of the same material. And that was where she waited.
The woman sat slightly forward, perched on the edge of her seat, with her right arm propped atop the table. Silently, she peered over the roof's edge, watching the street's few inhabitants mill about. Many, she noted mildly, walked arm in arm. Whether they were friends or lovers, it was impossible to determine. Yet their simple closeness stirred something within her, and after only another moment, she pulled away. Now settled deep in her chair, with her arms crossed against her chest and her blue eyes closed, she was invisible from the world below. As invisible as she had been for the past six months.
Earlier that morning, she had emerged from the shadows for the first time. She had spoken with Baldur, who she had not seen in over a month. And she had spoken with Icarus, for whom it had been far, far longer. When was the last time? the girl found herself musing. Once or twice, she had aided him in small projects when he had expressed concern for his or others' safety. But that had been shortly after her hiatus, so perhaps as far back as five months? The thought bothered her, though her impassive expression revealed nothing. That had not been fair of her.
So after their meeting, she had asked the blue-haired man to join her in this place of quasi-solace. He had agreed, yet part of her wondered if he would show at all. Or would he stand her up, not unlike what she had done to him so many times before?
A warm breeze swept across the rooftop, and for a moment, the rustling of leaves rose above the city's noise.