Cor gives all his savings to a project that's trying to eat away the distance to the Moon, and he gathers supplies and tries something else.
A young human man in nothing but a pair of shorts, painted all over in broad patterns with still-wet blood and fine ash, appears on his knees in the middle of an unreasonably pretty city and falls unconscious.
The inhabitants of the unreasonably pretty city are concerned. They confirm with one another that, yep, appeared out of nowhere, and are more concerned. Soon all of the people around who weren't in uniform (there weren't many to start with) are standing a reasonable distance off (but not going home, they were near when it happened and it's a necessary precaution).
People in uniform approach the unconscious person.
Unreasonably pretty city. It has the bit of a feel of a fortress to it - or maybe concept art of a fortress, a bit too surreal and clean and tidy and artsy to be a real fortress. High walls in the distance and narrow windows and thick walls and wide avenues with chokepoints and gates, and also exuberant flower gardens and elaborate woodworking. And someone must have, like, handcarved these cobblestones into excessively pretty patterns.