It had been five days since they found Ersa's body and Erend had been drinking steadily for four of them. He knew he should stop, knew this wasn't what she would have wanted for him, but his chest felt like someone had torn his heart out and left him bleeding and raw. So he drank, the buzz of alcohol dulling his senses, numbing the bleeding edges of his being.
He ignored the stares and whispers as he stumbled by, pretending to do his duties as Captain of the Vanguard. As if he could ever fill her shoes. As he approached the gate, his bleary mind realized someone was there, arguing with the Carja guard.
"Erend's sister is dead?"
It was his name that caught his attention, but it was the speaker that held it. Her hair burned like forge fire and she was wearing Nora furs. He only knew one person who fit that description, her name rising out of his despair like a beacon.
I have no idea how many days actually passed between Ersa's murder and Aloy's arrival, but this was where my brain took the prompt and it made a nice first line.