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Silhouine spends the night underneath her little pantry-tucked bed, fearful of dragons, with a cat who alternates between dozing and jerking itself awake to bury startled claws in her back.

In the morning she knocks next door, at Mlle. Sunanza’s, to find that she’s not the only apprentice left to literally mind the shop.

“There are a bunch of us stuck here, owners hied out to the country,” glowers Dulap, over buttered dumplings. “We’re having a bonfire in the square tonight. Want to come?”

“I’d like that,” Silhouine smiles.

They don’t burn the shop down that night. That happens later.