More from the untitled WiP that I’ve been posting from.
This follows from last week’s snippet.
The street sloped down from here and below them spread… squalor: half-collapsed buildings, makeshift shelters, fires whose smoke gave off a putrid greasy smell. “What –?”
“Shack Town,” Veren murmured, his gaze troubled as looked down at the ruins below them. “This area was hardest hit during the Magic Wars and the Uprising, and it was never rebuilt. It was felt to be ‘contaminated’ and not worth the money and effort. Almost all of the Mutants end up there, regardless of where they were born.”
Kestra did not reply, her attention focused on the wreckage below her. The Call was definitely coming from down there. She let her gaze travel over the buildings, hoping she would be able to see where to go.
A shimmer of energy caught her attention and she frowned, focusing on it. The fear in the Calling escalated as the shimmer intensified. “There!” she said, pointing. “Let’s go!”
I thought maybe I should post a bit of an explanation/blurb in progress for you to give you some sort of idea about the world I’m playing in for this:
Magic had reasserted itself. Banished for millennia, it could no longer be contained and erupted, bursting forth with a surge of power that had never been known before, and which, mercifully, has not been repeated since.
Unfortunately, no one believed in magic anymore, so no one knew what to do with it, not even those most directly affected: not those who had mutated overnight into creatures of legend, not those born as something other than human, not those who retained human but found themselves touched in other ways, with special powers and abilities.
Almost no one.
There were a few. A few who had held on to dreams and understandings, who believed in the things that others called fantasy. These few took roles as adepts, as teachers and counselors, leading the way into the new age.
There were some, of course, who rejected the changes. They persecuted the Abominations, as they called them, they drove them out of the cities and into the wilds.
And, gradually, a balance was achieved.
Outside the cities, in the wilds, there arose villages, their inhabitants, human and non, living together in peace and harmony with each other and with the natural world that was feared by the city dwellers.
In the cities, Tech ruled. But magic, or, rather, magic power, was not forgotten, nor entirely abandoned, and Temples grew, their priests (who had no power of their own) seeking Power, seeking to harness it for their own ends.
But also in the cities, magic remained.
Humans were still born with special abilities, special senses. They learned not to talk about them, not to reveal that they were “different” – if they did, they were ostracized, driven out away from the general population.
Veren was one such human.
Mutants were still born each year, but in smaller numbers than during the Awakening. Some infants were killed by their parents, and some were hidden away for a few years, abandoned when their differences could no longer be hidden.
Jopie was one such child.
And in the wilds, humans and mutants continued to live in harmony, and to practice magic. But occasionally one would be born with a wild talent, something strong and different than what was normal for their village. They felt isolated, because there was no one to help them understand their gift. Some were driven mad by the visions they saw, others went in search of help when the visions became too much to handle.
Kestra was one such person.
(Yeah, I know it’s too long. But the book is a long way from being finished so I have lots of time to work on it.)
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