iii) When Shyan took over his watch

When Shyan took over his watch, Cang dreamed of a great, glowing emerald, flawed but beautiful, fogged, murky, and big as the hills. He stood at its base, which seemed to descend deep into the earth. He rapped at it with his knuckles.

It addressed him.

“Cang,” the emerald said. “Many are the riches meant for you. I am but a trifle. Understand?”

Cang’s eyes were vacant — a thin line of spittle escaped from his open mouth.

“Yes,” the emerald intoned. The air around it seemed to vibrate with the sound. “Riches sure are great, no?”

All Cang could do was nod, gently, his head bobbing up and down in delirious agreement. Outside the dream, he nodded in his sleep, and continued to do so until he was woken by the rest.