SONGBIRD looks out the window as well. The protective field is gone. In its stead rises a pallid fog, a phantasmagoria blurring the horizon, subsuming the Angel’s-Tears and everything that surrounds it.

SONGBIRD gets the sense she’s not seeing everything she’s meant to. She shakes her head, refocuses her eyes, and realizes the mist is stopped. It does not rise from the Black Depths, but rather is paralyzed, endless steam frozen in the shape of ice.

Further below, mutated lusii rave and lunge at the ship, raging, hating- immobile as well. Jaws twisted into grotesque expressions of hunger, yet never snapping shut. Claws and broken bones aborted in horrendous motion.

SONGBIRD: She was keeping it together. Not just the shield, but... time... itself?
LONELY (unsure): Let’s not jump to conclusions.
PRACTITIONER: It could have been a failsafe of sorts. To vouch the ship’s immediate care in the event of her absence.
PUNDIT: Have you knowledge of alchemy?
PRACTITIONER: Merely theoretical.
PUNDIT: Then don’t just s-say things, for the All-Mother’s sake!!!
STRANGER: If there’s a way out of this predicament, the Nobleman has it. And if the Nobleman has it, he’s not using it ‘till the only life signs on this ship are his.
STRANGER (pointing at WATCHER): And his.