Pescal dangled a fishing line into one of the eddies that formed along the cobbled river edge. He breathed deeply, enjoying the smell of fish and the sharp taste of salt that came across the island of Lok-Altor from the sea. The ruined pillars of the ancient bridge seemed to shake in the sun-reflecting water. Here he could relax, forget about pretty girls named Sari—not that there could ever be more than one with that name, not for him—about a father losing himself in memories, about a sister who was convinced she would never marry.
The fish in these pools were strange creatures—unlike those caught in the nets—but they allowed his family occasional luxuries: a shark-tooth necklace for his sister, a drizzle of royal honey for his mother.