Ivan wrapped his arms around his center. Sleeping on the land had many drawbacks, but the clear view of stars shining down on him was well worth all the inconvenience. Mikhail had whispered to him just last night how the stars he watched were long gone. Mikhail lied sometimes, which in and of itself set him apart from most of the other People. Before the cataclysm, it was said that many of the others had practiced the art of lies, but afterward the People had eschewed the practice. Ivan did not care that others spoke ill of the spotted dolphin. He liked the other man, and often saw a sadness hiding in Mikhail’s black eyes, hinting at a tragic truth behind the lies.
A flash of silver shot across the sky, and Ivan held his breath. The strange beauty of those far away points of light drew his imagination, and lit up his soul. He would never dare to speak of that to another of the People though, lest he be branded a fool, or worse yet, a heretic.
He might tell Mikhail, if his friend were here. Tonight Mikhail had chosen to sleep with the pod. The unusual behavior was yet another oddity to ponder. Mikhail had never chosen the pod over Ivan before, not once in the four months since they’d become friends. Ivan’s skin tingled and felt tight around his eyes. He did not like the feeling.