It was very late, and it would be a handful of hours before the sun was out. The emperor stood with his back to all four of his guardians. It had actually been a very long time since all of them had been in one place. The guardians all worked on their own missions and individually returned to him when they were done and ready for another task.

“Thank you all for showing up here. I love all four of you very much, and I am sorry that this may be the last time we all get to see each other.”
“Jianyu, please don’t talk like that,” the Librarian interrupts.
There is a pause, and none of them express much, but the feeling of concern is tangible.

Interrupting Jianyu was remarkably dangerous, particularly during important discussions. Jianyu responds with a very soft tone, “Kiimarda, my darling, the world depends on these changes to be built into a better place. We know someone dies tomorrow, we know that some of us will die. We must still fulfill our roles, because no one else can.”

The Librarian, Kiimarda, nods and glances to the ground forlorn. Cibao is as cheerful as always. The Magician snickered and waited. The doll tarried in silence.
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