Douglas had a daughter.
The mother had been lost a few years after Kesse was born. She had wandered into the dusty fields sleep walking. She had stopped beneath a diamond-plated drill tip that the geologists swore had been taken off the site for maintenance.
Kesse learned to read and think critically and to clean and cook.
And they had a beautiful library in their home. Most of the books were written in a language she was never taught.
Despite the brutality that she had been exposed to as a young child, Kesse found comfort inside their home where the haunted geologist’s equipment could not harm her.
For a long time, she was content to watch the sun and moon from behind bulletproof glass windows.
When she grew restless, Douglas told her it was time to know the real danger.
He told her the story of what Earth was like before the apocalypse. He told her that there was once endless lands of emerald green grass and fresh food that sprouted right out of the ground.
But now, living on the charred remains of a war torn planet, the only survivors were thieves, murders and bitter alchemists.
She would not survive. When Kesse was four, she took a vow to never hurt a soul. She didn’t have the heart to kill, even if it meant her life. She didn’t have the wisdom to outsmart any alchemist who would offer protection in exchange for something called a ‘wife’.
Douglas gave Kesse a cup of tea to drink while she struggled with the reality of this world.