|2671698213||Wrap Speed||"I do not like the skulls," Saint-14 said. "I have seen too many bones already." He unspooled a long strip of bandage and wrapped it around a Rifle. He dropped a handful of small candies into the barrel, then reconsidered, and emptied them into his palm. "But I like the bats! I think we should have the bats all through the year."
Sagira flew to a high corner of the Hangar and affixed a strand of glittering cobweb. "I keep forgetting this will be your first Festival of the Lost here," she said. "It feels like you've been with us for longer than that."
"It is not even a year yet," Saint-14 nodded as he taped a small paper bat to Sagira for her to ferry to its destination. Osiris left the two alone in the Hangar as he consulted with Ikora about the Pyramids, which was just as well—he was never one for decorating.
"You know, when I first came to the Tower, Guardians brought me platefuls of warm lavender cookies," Saint-14 said. "I thought to myself, what hospitality!"
Sagira chuckled as Saint-14 sighed. "You know the end of the story. It was only how they observe the Dawning in the City, and when the Dawning was over, so too were my cookies."
"But I did not understand yet. When they stopped, I thought maybe I had done something wrong. So I tried to do better, work harder!" He crushed a handful of candies, picked out a few peanuts, and tossed them to his pigeons with a shrug.
"And look at what you accomplished!" Sagira said. "Because of your work, the Tower may just survive for another year. So in a way, you did just what you set out to do."
"Exactly!" said Saint-14. "It taught me something about hope. Something as small as—" he looked around the Hangar for a moment, then pointed to a decoration "—as this pleasant gourd could give someone the hope to live for tomorrow. So we must treat each day as though the future depends on it."
Sagira ferried another paper bat. "It's funny," she said, "sometimes you sound just like Osiris."
Saint-14 laughed, then dropped his voice to a ridiculous rasp. "No," he growled, "Osiris… sounds like me."
Sagira's shriek of laughter startled the pigeons into flight.|
|3882713947||Tomb Rider||Osiris pushed past a strand of decorative cobwebs as he entered the Hangar. Saint-14 was crouched beside an old Sparrow, busily wrapping it with a long bandage.
"This Sparrow will be terrifying," Saint-14 said proudly, but stopped when he saw the expression on Osiris's face. "Bad news?"
Osiris perched himself nervously on the edge of the workbench. "Their plan is to evacuate the threatened planets," he said. "To flee, concern slaked by only the raw hope that the Pyramids will not pursue. If they do, what we have lost already is little compared to what we are about to lose."
Without thinking, Osiris pulled off his gloves. Freed of the metal gauntlets, his hands looked old. He wrung them together, his fingers worrying at the edges of his ragged nails. "If the Darkness is able to claim Mars… if they take Mercury—"
"Quiet your mouth," commanded Saint-14, and Osiris did.
Saint-14 stood and then moved toward Osiris in two enormous strides. He grasped the Warlock by his shoulders and lifted him to his feet. He took Osiris's hand in his own and wordlessly filled it with triangular orange candies.
Osiris obediently placed a few in his mouth and chewed silently.
After a while, he spoke.
"These are terrible," he said. There was gratitude in his voice.
"Yes," replied Saint-14, "have some more."|
|1350976223||Restless Shell||"Give me a hand with this," Sagira said as she floated into the cockpit of Osiris's ship. "Come on."
Osiris grumbled but dutifully held one end of the long bandage as Sagira spun in the air and wrapped the rest snugly around herself.
"There are other creatures for you to emulate besides this foul revenant," Osiris said with disdain as Sagira pulled free to check her reflection in the dark windows of the ship. "The world has no shortage of monsters."
"But none are as terrifying as the ghoulish mummy!" Sagira cried, her voice rising in a wavering howl. "Risen from the dark sands; unstoppable in its search for revenge!"
Sagira moaned and lurched through the air, her bandage flapping behind her. Osiris did not move and allowed her to clunk against his headdress.
"Ridiculous," Osiris said flatly, but not without affection. "What is so appealing about a tortured being consumed by hatred for all eternity?"
"It teaches us a valuable lesson," Sagira said. "If a man does not embrace his past, he has no future."
Osiris considered Sagira's words. "That's clever," he said. "Did you come up with that just now?"
But Sagira only cackled ominously and floated away.|