|Chapter 8: The Corruption of the Sun|
Sunder frowned as if Covenant's attitude were a denial of his gladness. "I know nothing of such matters. The Sunbane I know--and the Rede which the na-Mhoram has given us for our survival. But seasons--Law. These words have no meaning."
No meaning, Covenant groaned. No, of course not. If there were no Law, if there had been no Law for centuries, the Stonedownor could not possibly understand. Impulsively, he turned to Linden. "Tell him what you see."
She appeared not to hear him. She stood at the side of the rock, wearing an aspect of defenseless hebetude.
"Linden!" he cried, driven by his mortal apprehension. "Tell him what you see."
Her mouth twisted as if his demand were an act of brutality. She pushed her hands through her hair, glanced up at the green-wreathed sun, then at the green-thick bank.
Shuddering, she permitted herself to see.
Her revulsion was all the answer Covenant needed. It struck him like an instant of shared vision, momentarily gifting or blighting his senses with the acuity they lacked. Suddently, the long grass and curling vines, the thick bushes, the saplings no longer seemed lush to him. Instead, they looked frenetic, hysterical. They did not spring with spontaneous luxuriance out of the soil; they were forced to grow by the unnatural scourge of the sun. The trees clawed toward the sky like drowners; the creepers writhed along the ground as if they lay on coals; the grass grew as raw and immediate as a shriek.
The moment passed, leaving him shaken.
"It's wrong." Linden rubbed her arms as if what she saw made her skin itch like an infestation of lice. The redness of her sunburn aggravated all her features. "Sick. Evil. It's not supposed to be like this. It's killing me."