“Here? It can’t be.”
We stood on a hillock above the wasteland, seeing nothing but a turbulent blue-and-red sky, where clouds rolled and stretched and shredded into vapor.
“It will come,” you said.
Yes. Rising up and up, out of the depths and into awareness. So the tales foretold.
The wind whipped around us, slipped under collars, and parted our hair as if to probe our minds. It wanted us gone so no eyes would witness what was to come.
I didn’t think it wise to stand there exposed. “We could fall, or be taken up.” Or miss out on a bland recurring day, safe at home.
“No. We must be here for this.”
You were right.
Years from now, when travelers follow smooth paths to climb these peaks; when the land around flows with life of nature’s own design; when villagers settle the valley to graze livestock on grassy slopes — we can recall the day we saw the deep-bound giants rise.
The wind slowed and the air turned heavy, sinking into a sigh.
Any minute now.
The ground before us rumbled, heaved, and heaved some more. The mounded plain split into a fissure miles long and vented an earthy groan.
You grabbed my hand, or I grabbed yours.
Rocky cones poked through the gap, shaking off dirt and boulders as they pushed upward. The peaks joined at the bases, forming a massive mountain range that rose higher and higher until its ridgeline sawtoothed the space between earth and sky.
And there it stood before us — emergent stone from underground, brought forth to tower above and reshape the world.
You drew a breath and whispered, “The Undeep.”