Shards of Scorjerak
World 156 was a Predictable Platelet, a flaming pentacle a gross-miles on a side circled by a cage of fire. Nothing lived there. World 157 was a Predictable Platelet of a straightforward magic-free style, early in its lifespan, inhabited by foul-smelling stromatolites which derived energy from the flowing of water over them. The Company left it in disgust.
World 158, Scorjerak, was a hell of radiation and poison, a once-inhabited Platelet whose inhabitants had destroyed it. Its dusty glass towers gleamed in the light of the four small suns which the world sprouted on the tips of its four cardinal poles. Its wide boulevards must have once been beautiful with, one assumes, aromatic trees and well-stocked boutiques and wonderfully evocative sculptures admired by elegantly-dressed Basic Bipeds. Now they were empty. Scorjerak was too deadly for bipeds, for trees, even for bacteria.
Osoth was instantly captivated. “Let us bide for a time and learn the secrets of Scorjerak. From them let us weave a tale of a world which hated itself to death. It shall be a fine moral tale. They clearly needed dragons to rule them and compel them to life.
Yarenton nodded. “You shall need a good historian for this endeavor. I am such a historian.”
Questhraum giggled, sparks of lightning dancing around his mouth. “My charming Yarenton is crucial but insufficient. You shall need a good poet for this endeavor. I am such a poet.”
Fraxtseng looked from Yarenton to Questhraum. “My life-companions shall find great amusement and exertion in this. For myself, as a stone-mage … I hope that there are ancient sealed vaults that must be opened with great care, or perhaps majestic monuments which must be compelled to reveal their secrets. Otherwise, with such limited employment and both my companions occupied, I might as well take a week-long nap.”
Jaraswat glared at Fraxtseng. “I shall find something for you to do.”Support this project! Show that you’re reading it by exchanging notes with the characters, other readers, the writer, and occasional other entities at sythyry.livejournal.com. And/or buy Bard Bloom’s books on Amazon, especially Mating Flight and World in My Claws, the prequel to this story. Also: Glossary and Dramatis Personae.