The orange sun was fading in the horizon, as the High Lady of Selen looked out from her perch. Hesitantly, she turned away from the balcony and returned to her chambers. Another day had gone by, and the boy was still left to be found. Time was running out.

The chamber that had been given to her by the Lord of Bélay was of nice size, although not one quite as large as she was used to. It was a simple room, consisting of a bed, a writing desk and two sitting chairs. But it was not luxury that Mala was searching for, and simplicity well suited her needs.

Taking out her hair piece, Mala let her black hair fall to her back. Carefully, she then lay down on her bed, and began to think. She had spent seven days in Bélay, and she had another five left to go before her escort would arrive to take her back to Selen. Five days left to find the boy, Danaush. Five more days

She considered sending a letter to Selen, telling her servants not to come for her for another week, allowing her extra time to search for him. If twelve days wasn't going to work, would seventeen make much more of a difference? She would not send for more time. No, she would just have to make changes to her strategy.

She had been to this city, many times before, looking for Danaush, every time targeting the middle class, and rich areas, in hope that when his mother had died, he had been taken in by someone of those classes. Every time she came, she left without him. Maybe her hopes had not come true. Maybe, when her sister had died, he had been forced into the city slums. Maybe…

Mala stopped herself, realizing she had no more time for maybes. She had wasted sixteen years on maybes, and this time, time was running critically short. In a few days, the boy would probably Awaken and would need her the most.

Mala knew that Gorton, the Lord of Bélay would object, but she had to do it. On the morrow, she would enter the slums of Bélay and she would find the boy.