He lay there peacefully as if sleeping, unmarred, belly full of mice hearts, dreaming of moon gossip. His talons were clasped together and the down of his abdomen looked so soft it felt disrespectful to notice how it glowed and faded into the air like a flame. He weighed little more than a paper plane when I lifted him. I wrapped his body in a green pillow case, lowered him into a shoebox coffin and drew a heart on the box over where his would be.
Then at sunset we carried him to the forest, where off the trail my daughter and I gathered stones for his tiny tomb. We propped a spiky cedar stump atop the monument, a crown for the night king.