She stands in front of the locked gates to her once-home, now lost to her. Desolate, she turns, slowly, and begins to walk away from the life she once lead. A life now lost to her, through no fault but her own, her own stupid luck to fall in love with a man she can never have, and so betray her ancient bloodline with her feelings. Now, her own feelings betray her, and tears start to roll down her cheeks, blurring her vision.

It is not the richness and honour she her once-title had brought her that she will miss most, she thinks, or the warmth of her fireplace on a cold winter's night as she had her daily lessons in bed, surrounded by plush luxurious comfort, but the feeling of belonging she felt whenever she remembered that she was the heir, the long-awaited girl-child who would take her place on the throne as king on her seventeenth birth day. She was the loved, blessed, and gifted one who had surpassed all others in everything she set out to do.

Now, she is a nobody, a faceless, nameless street-child, a beggar. She herself had once spit at the pitiful urchins, laughing at them as her personal servant had brought her a new type a truffle to try, or some other delicacy from some far-off colony she would soon rule. She hates her stupidity, hates how much she despises herself for having become such a lowly life-form.

Stumbling around, half blind with tears, she realizes she is near the Great River, right where the rapids begin. Many a fool has died here, by their own hand or some unknown enemy's. She turned a bit, seeing the cabin of the body-fisher, the barren streets, cold and lonely, and, in the distance, the tall spire where her astronomy tutor sleeps.

She sighs, and stumbles blindly until her feet touch something soft. Closing her mind to the aching loneliness creeping in, she collapses into the body-fisher's dog's bed, oblivious to the man she loves, standing on a bridge not thirty paces away, watching her, one tear slipping down his face.