We move on staying under cover. Fortunately the trees are dense overhead in this region. Every whine in the air causes everyone to inadvertently duck, however. Many have died due a bolt from above.
Lyra and Hanna have led us to the point where they previously separated, at the river’s edge, and from there Lyra took over to lead us to the Spire. All trace of her previous path has been erased. Not even Artur, a skilled tracker, is able to find anything.
We are lost.
I see how it frustrates Lyra, but she must find it inside now. No one can do it for her.
Damin grips my arm, hauling me to a halt. “Stop!” I call out in a penetrating whisper. All movements ceases. “Damin?”
He releases me, but does not react. He stares into the trees as if looking at a faraway place. We have seen this before. Someone is communicating with him. We wait. He will tell us when he is free of it.
Eventually he focuses. The expression he gifts us with thereafter causes the hairs on my arms to spike.
“They are coming,” he says. “All the Ilfin currently on Massin are coming to Arc. Their aim is to destroy the Spire.”
I close my eyes. By the stars, it is the best news.
“From Hal?” Joseph asks quietly.
Damin nods. “He is with Siri and Kay in an Ilfin shuttle.”
Lyra clasps her hands together, smiling.
“When?” Mirlin demands. “When are the ships arriving?”
“Tomorrow, soon after dawn,” Damin states.
Everyone stares at me. “We need a place where we are able to view the sky,” I say. “Once we determine the direction of their flight, we will know where the Spire is.”
“It will be dark soon,” Lyra says.
“Then we must make haste.” I stride forward and the others follow. I sense hope is reborn, for their footsteps are lighter and far more determined than earlier.