Read from part one or reread part five.

Elysia stared into the fire, thoughts rising in her mind like sparks from the flame before they vanished in the aether. There were so many things to consider: where to start had been the most difficult choice to make. Not leaving behind her students or fellow priests — she knew well that they could get along without her, as the number of students who attended her discussions had diminished, and she’d taken little part in the instruction of the newest priests. They saw no need to come to her.

Thoughts of leaving Dircea behind didn’t trouble her, though Elysia had a feeling her lover wouldn’t take the news of her leaving well. Still, Dircea had never seemed the type to dwell, she was more light-hearted than that. Elysia remembered Ravena left without saying a word, and though Elysia suffered for it, she knew she wouldn’t have let her mentor leave if she’d known about it in advance. Elysia already felt guilty for leaving, though she’d yet to even make a decision.

Will I, or won’t I? She thought. I’ve had weeks to think this through, how can I still not know what I want, what I want to do? I feel I have to make a decision, no, I have to make a decision. The indecisiveness is worse than any potential consequences I face. Either I stay here to endure constant attacks on my character, or I hazard a journey that could claim my life in any number of interesting and terrible ways.