The end was a message in a bottle, locked in a chest, left behind in an abandoned castle at the heart of a forest. Tara leaned back in her chair, watching the leaves slip by, and smiled. The carriage was making good time along the roads, rickety as it was and uneven as they were, and the breeze carried the faintest smell of woodsmoke in through the quarter glass. Overhead, she could hear the coachman grunting commands to the horses from his perch, and beneath her she could feel the thrum of the wheels turning over beaten earth. The trees were tall and uniform, blurring into one as they rushed past her window; they stretched out in every direction, as far as the eye could see. It was like a mirrored corridor in a parlour trick, reflecting itself onwards forever.