Part Four – The Abandoning of the West


Part Four

The Abandoning of the West

Selected passages from the chapter…


“But these guesses and vague hintings of their strength, and merely the very fact that they stayed at the Scar as they did is, in truth, all we know of these beings. Perhaps out of sadness and a yearning for their old homes, destroyed and out of reach; perhaps out of great fear of those Ancient lands, and the evil and destruction they had, and perhaps could still, produce; or perhaps some other specific but now unknown reason compelled them to turn back from their kin as they reached and climbed out beyond its eastern walls, and stand and guard the Scar, looking always back across it into the lost lands beyond. Whatever the truth of the reason, they stayed, and waited, while the remainder of their people continued east…”


“But when they drew close, and were seen by those who initially ran out to aid them, thinking them to be their lost kin, their true and terrible natures were revealed. Skin hardened and cracking, greyed in places; limbs at times stunted and gnarled, at others grown beyond proportion; their eyes gloomed and sunken, as though seeing nothing. Or perhaps as though having already seen all…”


“And beyond all this there are tales then of the coming of the people to a place they named Raka – the void – within which lay the beating, raging heart of fear, which coalesced from the winds to stalk and scream into the night, whereupon it walked as beasts, spoke as men, and hunted as god…”


“Fearing some enduring curse against them they called and screamed and sang out prayers through the night and through the following day for an end to whatever evil had befallen them… But all in vain. The water fell, and fell again, until thirty days after their arrival the lake was emptied completely, and was as dust. And so they named the place Kravin (and thus as we know it now: the Despair)…”


“But later that evening, strange shadows were reported moving across the sky. First one, then several, crossing slowly high above the city, mixing with the clouds. And when the sun rose the next day, it did so to light a plain adorned with eight of the creatures. For many days this continued, more appearing, all haunting the skies at night, all waiting and watching the city from the plains afar during the day…”


“And when they reached the hills, they found that they in fact were two ranges, like two huge crescent moons set facing each other to north and south, with narrow gaps like the openings to a vast auditorium to east and west. Some of the men scaled the steep flanks of the northern range, and there amongst the heights of the hills they looked southwards and down into the curious, silent bowl of flattened land which lay enclosed between the two curving sets of hills. And they named this land Ibryska…”


To continue to Part Five, click here

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