It is the faintest glimmering of a spark. It floats in suspension in a bottle, the field it generates holding it equidistant from the surfaces that enclose it. It is an Ember, and it pulses gently, hungrily.

It has memories, of a sort, quantum states that hold the last use to which it was put. It no longer has any knowledge of the coal it consumed as an engine-seed, or of the alcohol it burned in the distillery. It remembers nothing of the forge, the furnace, or the oven. Those Ember-lives are long past, overwritten, forgotten.

It remembers now only the glass that contains it – and the taste of one, peculiar molecule. That memory remains strong, and the Ember still resonates with that catalyzing reaction. The surrounding terrain has been glassed with the fury of that meeting.

There is one, final consequence of that moment of carelessness. Above the Ember, a jagged rift splits the sky, folding it. Electric tendrils reach from that Fold, groping, grasping, but not taking. There is nothing for it to take.

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