Leanne woke in a narrow lane under a dark winter sky. Her hands were grazed, as if she had fallen, but she had no idea where she was or how she had gotten there.
She sat up and shook her head. Her sling bag and umbrella were lying on the ground nearby, which made her feel a little better – until she released the clasps on her bag and found the Oracle was gone. The nature of its other contents – a plastic spoon, a dog-eared notebook, some toothpicks and a withered apple – increased her sense of wretchedness. Cold rain beaded on her skin as if drawn to her misery, and when she opened her umbrella, a small handwritten note fell out. It read:
I have the Oracle.
Leanne could make no sense of it. She had never heard of Vigsel Scree. He, she or whatever it was wasn’t being very helpful, but the mention of the Oracle filled her with a new resolve. She simply had to get it back. The lane came to a dead end behind her but ahead she saw a wider street l