More from the untitled WiP that I’ve been posting from.
This follows from last week’s snippet.
“Here.” Veren appeared at her side and handed her a round hard cake. “Give him this. It’s a travel ration.”
She broke off a small piece and ate it, showing the boy that it was safe. As she chewed, she handed the rest of it to the boy who hesitated for a moment and then snatched it from her hand, huddling away from her protectively. She smiled. “It’s all right,” she assured him. “It’s yours.” He took a bite then stuffed the rest into a pocket. “Eat,” she urged him. “You must be starving. We’ll take you to get more food.”
She stood up and took a step backward, offering her hand again. This time he climbed warily to his feet, towering over her even as he cowered away from her.
He was still eyeing them warily but she could feel him wanting to trust, and she relaxed; he would come around on his own, it was best not to push him.
She joined Veren at the entrance to the alley, and looked up at him questioningly.
An overly long blurb:
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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