The rumours began a few weeks ago, shortly after the explosion. Some people passed it off as an old landmine that was triggered by an avalanche or a poor snow-dwelling creature. It was a plausible theory.
Avalanches were not exactly uncommon around these parts, especially not after the war. However, this belief was shared by few, which was worrisome. You see, most people believed that giants were residing in the mountains and the sound of one falling broke the sound barrier.
It was absurd.
Giants were creatures in children’s fairy tales. I wasn’t too worried when the neighbour’s son shouted, “The giants fell from the sky!” before slamming a tiny tin soldier into the muddy earth. I could tell by the grin on his face that he was amused and, to be honest, so was I.
His friend, on the other hand, not so much. Probably because it was his tin soldier that had just been face-planted onto the ground.
But imagine my surprise one night when there was talk of sending folks up north to investigate the explosion. Children I understand, but grown adults should know better than to feed into paranoia.
“Let them seek their peace of mind,” I repeated to myself as I pulled the hood of my cloak over my face to shield me from the cold. It was something Grandfather had said to me that night when I expressed my concern about the search party.
He was right. The people needed a cure for their paranoia, but so did I.
Trekking through the snow grew more difficult when the snowfall started. It blurred my vision and the frigid air felt like a million pinpricks to my face.
Then, the light from Grandfather’s scepter flickered a bright scarlet colour, and I knew it wouldn’t be much longer until I arrived. After all these years, the beacon still worked.
The rumours may have begun a few weeks ago, but I grew up hearing the stories about the giants in the mountains and the people that lived with them.