YEAR: approx. 2020, autumn


Egwene slumbers in the decrepit Magicademy. Sunlight is beginning to creep through the windows; so too does stir the young girl. She frowns even in sleep.

The fog of slumber dissolves when she thinks she hears a familiar sound.


Egwene is awake in an instant. Teppei, Tzu’s companion animal, had disappeared from the campus soon after the Professor herself. It’s been weeks since Egwene last saw the dog in the flesh – has a month passed now in total?

Every night she’d been leaving food out, in hopes of leading the dog back home. Teppei had preferred his food warmed so Egwene hoped the offering might entice him to return…

But as Egwene nears the bottom of the stairwell, the scratching refuses to reappear.

Was it just my imagination?

She peers out a dusty window. The food she left out last evening has only been pecked at. And Teppei is nowhere to be found.