“Do you think people will remember us when we die?”
Liedel skipped a stone over the water. It hopped thrice, skidding, too imperfect to go further. She pouted and began skulking with her head down, scouring the dirt for another.
“When or after?” Althiira replied.
“What’s it matter?”
“Because people will always remember you when you die. Especially if it’s in a particularly grisly way. It’s not the same as-”
“You know what I meant,” her sister muttered. She barely heard her: she’d gone quite a ways down the shore of the lake, picking up rocks and discarding them with flippant tosses. “You’re such a smartass.”
“Well my ass’s sure smarter than your ass.”
One of the stones got lobbed her way and Althiira ducked, laughing.
“Seriously. Do you think they’d remember?”
She sighed, planting her feet on the ground and hauling herself up, her hands smacking dust off the seat of her pants. “Why does it matter whether they do or don’t?”
“You don’t want to be remembered?”
Althiira shrugged. “I don’t really care.”
Liedel looked at her oddly, her lips all screwed up between a frown and a smile. “I can’t tell if you’re kidding or not.”
“Look. Everybody dies. There’s been tons of people that’ve come and just as many that’ve gone. Sure, if you get a big statue of you made or if you’re some rich fucker-”
She sputtered laughter and scooped up a handful of mud, tossing it at Liedel’s feet as she squealed and skittered away.
“Everyone’s gonna get forgotten eventually. It might take a while, but everyone will. Whether it’s in one year or a hundred, what’s it matter? What difference does it make?”
Liedel’s brows knit together. She plucked up another rock and ran her thumb over its round smoothness, weighing it, deciding.
“I hope people remember me,” she murmured. “At least for a little while.”
Althiira peered at her, frowning. She’d never been good with words, with serious things. She walked closer and clasped a hand on her sister’s shoulder, shaking her.
“Hey. You’re young yet. We’re young yet. And besides, nobody’d ever forget you.” She grinned. “You’re way too annoying to forget.”
Liedel stuck her tongue out at her, but she could already see a grin twitching at her lips. She pulled her hand back and took aim, flinging the stone with all her might.
It skipped seven times before it finally sank away from sight.