To Feel the Edge of Heaven

Shavha tipped her head toward the heavens. As she gazed across the cosmos a single star fell
from its lofty perch, streaking across the sky before crashing into the horizon. Shavha tugged on
the sash trailing from her father’s robes. “Did you see that father? A star fell from heaven.”

Vhasam halted his march and turned to face his daughter. “That wasn’t just a star, my

Shavha returned her father’s concerned gaze. “It wasn’t?”

Recognizing his daughter was reaching an inquisitive age, Vhasam decided there was no better
time to teach Shavha about the dangers of their world. He sat down on small rock jutting out
from a nearby dune and motioned for Shavha to join him. “It was the soul of a child.”

Shavha sat down beside her father and allowed her eyes to return skyward. “What child?”

Vhasam picked up and held his daughter’s tiny hand. “An unfortunate child. One who ventured
into the unknown and will never join her ancestors in the great beyond.”

Shavha pulled herself away and stood to face her father. “Why not?”

Vhasam pointed toward the heavens. “You see those stars above us? Each of us has a soul
within one of those stars. When we die our earthbound spirits ascend, leaving this world to
rejoin our souls. This union facilitates our rebirth into a form able to traverse the great beyond.”

Realizing what this meant for her shooting star, Shavha felt forced to look away. Staring down at
her feet, she barely found the words for a reply. “But her star fell from heaven.”

Vhasam gently lifted his daughter’s gaze until it met his own. “And that is why she is
unfortunate. Our world is filled with dangers, but none are worse than the bloated behemoths
skulking across its surface. Bound to the earth yet unable to embrace it, one with the sky but
unable to ascend. These creatures lack a soul, yet wish to transcend the heavens themselves.
So they consume the souls of others, devouring our stars to get a taste of what lies beyond. If
you are ever so ill-fated to cross paths with such a beast, do not delay in your retreat. Without a
soul, death promises nothing but an endless void.”