The city of purity was quiet.
Illyria itself was in almost pitch black; apart from the stars, no light came from the moonless sky. Any illumination on the planet was artificial, or otherwise from the violet-colored fires in the houses of those still awake.
On the outskirts was a spaceship.
It was the kind of spaceship that was a few years old, but still working just fine. The engine was still a good, soft purr, the parts minimally dented.
Bandits crept silently out of it.
At least half a dozen of them, if not more, blended into the white walls of the city buildings, peeking into homes for possible items of value. The two in the back of the group covered the tracks their boots left in the salt-covered planet. A pair in front held purple torches, soaked in gasoline.
One of them let out a quiet, sharp whistle to catch the attention of the others. She seemed to be the leader, as they followed her command at once and looked in the window.
There, on soft looking blankets in a minimally decorated room, was a sleeping child.
The small thing couldn’t have been more than three years old in earth years— young, unassuming, and completely, utterly vulnerable.
As the bandits looked on, the child turned over in her sleep, sticking her thumb in her mouth as she did so.
She was completely unaware that her life was about to drastically change.
Silently, the lead bandit opened the window and slipped into the room.
“Ua, it chte kik.” She muttered, the sounds harsher than the content of the words. “You’re coming with me.”
The child, wrapped in the white robes of Illyrian clothing, still slept as the bandit scooped her into her arms, and remained that way until she awoke on the ship the bandits had emerged from.
It took the bandits a good ten minutes to notice that the child had even awoken; she’d only opened her eyes, but not a sound came out.
“Dehita!” One of the bandits called. “It’s awake!”
The lead bandit— that must’ve been Dehita— rushed over to see the child.
“A girl.” She mumbled to herself. “With a spirit much too strong for the weak-hearted Illyrians.”
She looked to her crew. “Twenty thousand Kanii. Go.”
Two of the bandits nodded and left the ship.
Dehita looked back to the tiny child. “You must be good, until I get my money. Hopefully, you’ll forget any of this ever happened.”
All the child did was blink.