Chapter 1: A month spent in Limbo
Kendric strode through the pedestrian corridors of Port Astrid with fleetness born of anxiety. He wasn't normally a fearful person, it was just the way that everyone in town had been looking at him since he made port. Eyes widened at the sight of his cargo, drifting behind him care-free on its woven tether of hemp cord. With each step the cord tugged and slackened as he walked, and the lodestone bobbed along behind him, tugging him backwards a little each time, resisting his gait with the force of its floatation. And around each bend, and past every shop windowsill, he saw eyes on him, or on the stone, or in a few instances, peeling off his clothing with their eyes. The attention didn't surprise him, but the force of it did. It seemed like conversations slowed as he brushed past, and then began again faster in his wake, like his ears did not work once he could no longer see them.
He continued this way for no more than twenties minutes before