Once, a long time ago, a R’il’nian I knew was killed (carelessness in a chemical laboratory) and left her body behind. I knew her well enough to attend her funeral, where we took turns remembering things about her. Finally we spoke the ritual words together: “Take the goodness and joy of your life with you as you go before, and let all sorrow and evil be consumed with your body in the furnace from which it came.” Then we joined together in teleporting her body into the sun.
More often, of course, people just gradually disappeared, as I no doubt have to my friends. We grow tired of life, and careless, or we think too highly of our abilities to take care when care is needed, as I did. We leave no bodies behind. But we do not simply wear out, like objects and animals.
These people are not objects or animals. They are people. They think. They dream – perhaps more than I do. They create and feel beauty. But they wear out.
How can this be?
Yet there is no doubt Storm Cloud is wearing out. She asked me to stay, to watch over her people. She sleeps now, or did when I left her. I do not think she will awaken from this sleep.
Jarn’s Journal to date is on my author site.