He soared through the air, weaving in and out of the white, cottonball clouds. He craved the wind in his hair, yearned for his stomach to jump just so when he leaned into a dive. He reveled in his acrobatic stylings as he floated over the ocean, streaking up the coastline, the morning sun rising out of the west.
From this height he could see the colorful reefs growing along the ocean floor, the rugged Ulian Mountains rising from the earth off to the east, and his majestic castle perched on the clifftops to the north. He swooped in low, skirting the surface of the ocean, feeling the salt spray on his face as waves crashed against the face of the cliff. He closed his eyes and smiled, letting the water wash the stress away.
Ever since the Midarians had invaded his kingdom to the far south, he had taken to flying more. Each day the news grew more dire: reports of villages burned to the ground, citizens butchered or carted away to a more dreadful fate. He hoped today would bring better tidings.
It would not.