In the early 1900s, the nation of Aetheri came out of its long interdimensional isolation and revealed to the humans of the Symphony Archipelago that they were not alone in the multiverse. Things swiftly got ugly after that.
In the early 1990s, Aetheri's leadership changed, and in the Archipelago, a tiny broken family of half-siblings banded together in the face of the bile and hate that was boiling up between the humans and the non-humans.
In the early 2000s, that family was split apart. Hawk Press and his sister Liya Kiski both begin a long and exhaustive journey towards understanding the difference between friend and enemy--and between the family you're given, and the family you make.
The entire hotel room was red-- the walls, the beds. The lights at the head of the bed glowed incandescently. Teige had dragged a low chair over to the foot of one of the beds and was now lounging on it, munching on pizza that dripped with grease.
"Whaaaalll, lookee," he said sardonically, as Hawk leaned into the large mirror over the sinks, searching his jawline for stray feathers, "All back to normal. What'd I tell ya? Oi," he added, "quit preening and come eat some proper food."
Hawk ignored this. All the extra feathers and all the scaly skin had actually dropped off--his face, his shoulder, his arm had all gone totally back to normal, as if nothing had ever happened. He paused, and then glanced over his shoulder at Teige, a grin spreading across his face.
"Hey," he said, "didja like being in the middle of nowhere for five days?"
"No," Teige said simply, "Why?"
"'S too bad about the next couple a' weeks then, huh?"
Teige's brow knit slightly, and he glanced at the map, which lay spread out on the bed beside him. Just past Fort Summer was a long stretch of water punctuated only by a series of featureless islands, labeled in tight, small type 'Alka Wildlife Preservation Area.'