He runs into Granddaddy Cain somewhere in what he’s pretty sure is Argentina, in a city full of weird octagonal plazas and gangsters draped in hot pink shawls. The old man looks the same as ever, face still all whorled up like a thumbprint and glowing softly like the wreck of a burning city, and the hundred and fifty years since they last bumped into each other hasn’t sweetened his disposition any. At any rate, Cain doesn’t say anything or even grunt when Ahasuerus says hello.

Ahasuerus gives him a cigarette anyway, which the old man doesn’t thank him for, naturally, just stuffs it in his face already lit, and clumps along beside him for an hour or two. It’s soothing, actually, which he wasn’t expecting. The constant tension of waiting for The Return is just background noise at this point; the old man, just the fact of him, reminds him that even immortal time is not the real time.

“I remember you,” Granddaddy Cain says, in his unspeakable, untranslatable language, what Longinus calls the prelapsarian dialect. “Where do I remember you from?”

He finds his mouth filled suddenly with the Aramaic of his youth, a tongue he hasn’t heard, let alone spoken, since before the first fall of Rome. “I honestly can’t remember,” Ahasuerus says, and weeps.

Old man Cain pats his shoulder in sympathy, and falls silent.