Thursday, May 27, 2010

"Stormborn," The Golden Age, 423 words

“We saw our future in the stars. Glorious, perfect, unchanging and unchangeable. Those of us born under a favored sign took power, set ourselves as high above common men as the stars were above us. Led by the greatest of us, we shaped an empire constant as the stars and unstoppable as the dawn.

“But the stars are not constant. A change came upon them, one that no man could read or foretell. It was not a sudden thing, but one in the workings for countless, unknown years. A fractional misalignment, and the powers of the starborn nobility began to fail. Not all at once, no, for such things were measured in generations, not years. The eldest starborn kept their potent powers, but their children were marginally weaker – so little as to be unnoticeable. But each generation weakened, and over the centuries the powers of the starborn became lesser things.

“And the stormborn waxed as the starborn waned. Disaster wracked the land, hurricanes and earthquakes and grand fires, empowering and multiplying the stormborn until there seemed as many with such powers as those without. The very heavens above seemed set to wipe the starborn from the face of the world, to be replaced by a mad rabble strengthened by cataclysm and war, the chaos in the stars reflected in the chaos of the world. What none knew was that the changes in the stars that had so weakened the starborn were also to sweep away the stormborn, once both powers were burned out.

“And so, on a river of blood, a golden age was borne away, the world swept clean for ages of stone, bronze, and iron. And the stars, silent in their heavenly reaches so far above, no more touched upon the fates of men.”

The End of an Age, Jairal the Eunuch, last scion of House Cadin

***

"We told ourselves that we had found perfection. A golden age that would never end, an empire that would rule forever. We promised glories unsurpassed, a glorious future for all our children and their children, on nigh unto infinity.

“We should have known better.

“Perfection isn't what it used to be. The golden age is gilt and rust beneath. The empire is rotting from within. There are no glories, and the future is a lie. Infinity shall never be ours to grasp.

“And we have nobody to blame but ourselves.”

–His Immortal Resplendence, Emperor Taal the Solitary, first and last of the Methis Dynasty

No comments: