1. She turns the final key and with a creak the door begins the slow process of unlocking, massive clockworks slowly unwinding the layers of protection her grandfather had put in place.
2. The forest floor crunches with every step, the ice shattering in tiny spiderwebs and taking with it what new growth had survived the storm.
3. He can feel himself dissolve when they teleport, even though the scientists insist it’s impossible. For those few seconds when he is neither here nor there, he’s acutely aware of both selves before the old one fades away.
4. It doesn’t take them long to find where the missing workers had gone. Ragged tunnel mouths, marred with blood and shredded clothing, are scattered along the quarry walls. They can see fresh black splashes along the edges where the rockwurm’s digestive acids dripped onto the marble, ruining the stone.
5. “Magic isn’t in people, it’s in things.” She tapped his forehead. “People think too much so the magic dies.”