The raven fluttered out of the window of the vast storeroom of the Western Tower, dived towards the courtyard, then pulled up to catch an updraught of warm air to balance on. It stretched its wings out wide, tilting ever so slightly from side to side as it peered about itself, and then banked sharply away from the tower and towards a small town far below the castle walls.
It darted this way and that before entering a chamber flooded by the light of stained glass windows and hopped over to a plinth, scattering some doves which morphed into women dressed in flowing white robes, gliding to the floor as the raven transformed into a black-robed woman holding a matte-black rock.
She rose, her robes swirling about her, turned to the women in white who stood facing her with rapt attention. “It will begin soon; we must warn the others.”