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  • Writer's pictureLinda Thackeray

Scribblings - 10th July 2023 - A Little Preview!

A quick hello to those interested in what I've been up to.


I've gone dark for a few months, but it's only because I've been hard at work on the sequel to The Patient, which I've tentatively called Vessel. The Vessel will explore the broader world of Avalyne and the modern world, briefly touching on Queen of Carleon, The Easterling and most recently, The Patient.


Here's an excerpt from an early chapter - I hope you enjoy this sneak preview.

 

Amaranthinos Caenum, the next epoch. Since the birth of time, there have been three great epochs. The first began with Sireth’s awakening at creation’s birth. Her breath cooled the maelstrom that followed and gave form to what we now call our universe.”


Dan heard this description before, but without the intensity detected in Tamsyn’s voice and the urgency in Lylea’s eyes.


“The stars are her children, with each possessing voices of their own and speaking in tongues of cosmic song we cannot even begin to fathom. Sireth delighted in their elation as they stretched across this new expanse, filling the emptiness with their light. Some even formed families to become galaxies.


For a long time, they appeared content, but as the ages hurtled by, their joy withered and their songs became dirges of lament. The distress of her children concerned Sireth, but when she asked what ailed them, they could not answer. They only felt a deep longing they could not explain.


It was then Sireth understood her mistake. Her creations, though beautiful, were barren. What they needed was life.”


The idea of galaxies having voices that communed with a creator left Dan rather speechless. Religion produced so many creation tales, but Dan’s presence in Avalyne had convinced him that this version of it might be true. Sireth might be the Earth Mother worshipped throughout the prehistoric world. Archaeological finds of the Neolithic period proved this until Christianity and similarly patriarchal religions insisted otherwise.


“She did her best to fulfil this need because she, too, was new to all this. Stars were far easier to fashion than what was now needed. There were many failures in the beginning, but at last, Sireth created the Celestials and set them free to do as they will. For aeons, the first born explored and ventured far, but soon, their lack of purpose made them discontent, lacking purpose. Even eternity can become unbearable if there is no growth and the Celestials, as they were in their youth, could not do this.”


While Dan couldn’t imagine how it might feel to be an immortal moving through existence, with one day appearing no different from the next, he understood the need to evolve. Mankind’s journey from caves to the moon landing was an exercise in struggle and resilience. Humanity made mistakes and continued to do so, but they also achieved minor victories, both sweet and satisfying. What had it been like for the Celestials to be all-powerful but seeing no meaning for their existence?


“Because of this, Sireth created a new kind of life, the kind whose candles burned brief. These beings would be born and would die, but in between, they would live as none had lived before. Theirs was to dream, hope, build, sing and realise all their thoughts imagined before passing that knowledge to children of their own.”


“Humans?”

“Elves. When the elves first awoke, their lot was not to be immortal. Sireth intended their lifetimes to be finite.”


“Then…”


“It was not Sireth that granted us immortality,” Lylea took up the narration, “but the Celestials.”


This did surprise Dan. While he was not religious by any means, how had Sireth reacted to the tampering of her design?


“When Mael exerted his dominance over Avalyne, unleashing his monsters upon us, we elves fought alongside the Celestials, but we were no match for his armies. Our people died by the thousands, if not in battle, then withered by old age. Our deaths outnumbered our births until our race grew in danger of fading forever. To save us, the Celestials gave us immortality and strengthened our hardiness by sharpening our senses and our bodies so we could fight Mael’s armies.”


Dan resisted the urge to point out the Celestials ‘gift’ sounded a great deal like engineering better soldiers for their armies. He swore silently at himself for allowing the thought, since Lylea seemed able to read his mind. Still, the lady did not react and continued her explanation.


“At the time of the Primeval Wars, Sireth had already departed to seed other worlds similar to our own. She returned when she discovered the Celestials’ actions and punished them by condemning them to remain forever in Avalyne, never to leave or follow her. Despite her anger, she did not withdraw their gift from us. Sireth left us with our immortality and charged the Celestials to be our guardians.”


This explained their absence after Avalyne and why they disappeared from the world. Only faint memories of their legend remained, absorbed into the mythologies of religions across the globe. Sadness filled Dan at this realisation. With the blood spilled over wars over ideology, the Celestials’ guidance might have spared humanity centuries of needless anguish.


“Before she left us to continue her work amongst the stars, Sireth created a new race. It was her decree no Celestial could meddle in their affairs. Disobedience would earn them her wrath and not even Mael dared defy her will. Thus began the third epoch, what we call the Age of Man.”


 

I hope this has intrigued you and invite everyone to keep an eye on this page. With any luck, Vessel will be completed before Christmas!


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