the wind stirred.
whipped fallen leaves into little swirls. A high pitched noise,
just beyond hearing at first, grew louder. The wind grew,
gathering the little swirls into a larger whirlwind that centered itself
on the spot marked by Lenesco. Sparks of light seemed to jump
between the flying debris. The high pitched noise dropped in
frequency and began to pulsate. A faint line of a half dome shape
a little higher than the height of a man began to form among the
swirling leaves. Shimmers of light danced between leaves and
outlined form. The high pitched whine grew to a crescendo and the
outline took solid shape: a smooth white, oblong dome -- almost like
half an egg laying on its side -- with thick runes written in red around
it at shoulder height. A red line enclosed the letters and trimmed
the bottom of the dome. At the narrower part of the dome and
intersecting the runes, the stylized image of a lion had been carved in
deep lines of gold. No other markings distinguished it.
wind settled again to a whisper.
the dome shape melted away as if it were ice in a furnace to reveal a
man wearing a dark hooded cloak sitting on a control bench of some kind
with a small table extending up at an angle in front of him. The
cloaked figure focused his attention on this table. The table was
tilted slightly towards him and seemed to gain all its support from its
extension from the bench.
with his work on the table, he lifted it over his head.
It pivoted on the extension and came to rest slightly above and
behind him. Unaware of the
six men watching his movements, he stood up and sighed, a long, peaceful
sigh of one whom remembers the former glory of a thing now haggard by
time. Conspicuously, he did
not have a sword. Then as
if suddenly recalling an urgent task, he walked briskly up an aisle and
towards an arched exit. As
he walked, the control bench shimmered and melted into the shape of a
bench similar to the others in the Old Arena.