(okay I saw this and had to write it)
Matoro stopped for a moment to shake off the cold, looking over his shoulder as he did. Even just partway up the side of one of the glaciers surrounding Ko-Koro, the village below was starting to look like a Po-Matoran’s model, the huts meticulously ordered, utterly still save the occasional other Matoran who could not find sleep shuffling through the drifts. Above it, the stars shone bright, and the carpet of white that blanketed the ground shimmered in their light, giving the scene a soft illumination. He smiled, and continued his ascent.
He’d started these climbs years ago, one night when he’d been unable to fall asleep and looked outside his window to see the snow shining as it did tonight. Before he knew it, he’d been sitting on the edge of one of the icy walls surrounding the village, taking comfort in the view of his home wrapped in the stars’ light. Since then, he’d made the climb hundreds of times when he could find no rest in his hut.
With a grunt, he hopped up and grabbed onto the ledge above him. Almost there…
Something grabbed onto his hand and pulled him up in a single smooth motion, and Matoro found himself looking into the cool blue eyes of Toa Kopaka for the second time in as many months. He gasped in spite of himself. The Toa lowered him down alongside him. “Aren’t you supposed to be sleeping, translator?”
“I… I wasn’t tired,” Matoro stammered out. “I was just taking a walk… I mean, I’ll go back, Toa Kopaka. I didn’t mean to bother you.”
“That was not an order, Matoro. You are free to stay.”
Matoro looked up hesitantly at the Akaku. “You’re sure?”
Kopaka nodded and turned his gaze back out towards the village below them. After a moment, Matoro sat down and did the same. From this high up, the village was nothing more than a scattering of blocks against a white canvas, glitters of light poking through wherever some scholarly Matoran was burning the midnight oil. At the north end of the village, Nuju’s hut was dark, and Matoro hoped the Turaga was sleeping peacefully.
The Matoran glanced up at the Toa again. Kopaka had a plain gray scarf wrapped around his neck, of the same material as Nuju’s robes, and it flapped slowly in the wind.
The Toa of Ice turned his head to the Matoran.
“Why are you up here?”
“It seemed as good a place as any to watch for any of the Makuta’s Rahi.”
“I guess it is.”
They sat there a while longer.
There was no response as usual.
“I’m glad you came to Ko-Koro.”
The Toa’s mouth curled into a small smile. “As am I, Matoro.”
For a second, he was too startled to reply, but then he matched the Toa’s smile and turned back to the view.
Matoro jolted awake and blinked at the sudden sunlight. Someone was rapping on his door. “Coming!”, he yelled, tumbling out of bed, tripping over the gray sheet wrapped around him as he did.
Kopeke was waiting outside. “Matoro, Turaga Nuju needs you. It’s two hours past sunrise, already.”
Matoro hung his head in shame - he never overslept. Until he was up and about, Turaga Nuju was without a voice. “Sorry, Kopeke. Let me just get my things and I’ll be right over.”
His fellow Ko-Matoran nodded and turned away, and Matoro clambered back into his home to grab his pack.
As he ran back to the door, he stumbled over the pile of fabric still sprawled along the floor, and reached down to pick it up. For a long while, he looked at it, then tucked it into his pack with a smile.
Matoro didn’t own any gray sheets.
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