“You shouldn’t speak ill of the dead.”
“They’ve not complained yet.” Merlyn rapped her staff on a cypress. “Lucius Verus is buried here. Ruled the Old Empire for years, now feeds a tree.”
Arfa shivered. The island was warm, but her bones felt wrapped in fog.
“I don’t like it here.”
“So what’s the lesson?”
Arfa thought. “Kings,” she said. “You’ve shown me kings. Whatever they did, they ended up here.”
“Memento Mori. Well done.”
“Merlyn… are you going to make me come back here?”
Merlyn stopped. “No,” she murmured. “Not for a long time.”
“Nothing. Let’s go home.”
Neil Murton about 5 years ago
The prompt here was a picture - Arnold Bocklin's 'Isle of the Dead'. I've been writing about Arfa for a while. The first story with her was 'Once and Future', which I probably can't link to here, but is on my blog if you're interested.