The Sear. Each eye a brand: three scorch marks on all things seen.
In the NoCity superstitions are run like telephone wires, knotted between megaliths, drooping between buildings, available to all by government decree. There is a hum of mythic beliefs blazing along the roadways, riding the lines.
In the alleys where severed lines sag, urchins suck the sparks from the lines. Their burnt tongues cough prophecies. They sneeze oracular nimbuses of painful particles. They jeer each other, daring further faiths. An arc of electric epiphany bites clean through the dark air. The urchins’ eyes go wide, drinking in the retina burn, pupils like eclipsed suns.
“Hail! Hail!”, they call, falling beneath the frozen rain.
The Sear passes by into older quarters of the NoCity. In each blazing eye, the Sear can hear the ringing of downed calls.
Operators are lying by.
Thick clouds roil over an empty courtyard. Light glows from the downed lines, from The Sear’s searing eyes. A pay phone rings out in a circumference of crossed occult hopes. It has all led up to this. The Sear lifts up the receiver, taking the signal.
“I’m afraid. They’re not here. May I take a message?”