Truth and fact are subjective words. Who told you these truths? Who recorded these facts? After an age or more of stories and tales passed down by generations, can anyone know the truth? They think so…

Life isn’t easy but it’s pleasant. Smoky tendrils rise from small fireplaces. Many have small vegetable patches. They hunt in the nearby woods or raise a few animals for eggs, milk or other food products. People barter more often than pay in hard coin, though the latter does happen especially with traveling merchants.

This isn’t a land of vast kingdoms. Cities are few and far between. In fact, you can name them: Orlast and Sarington. Hamlets dot the islands and land, most along the coast or rivers that crisscross the forests. A few are large enough to be called towns, predominantly as they are stops along the trade routes. Working a merchant caravan for the warm season is a respected, if difficult, profession.

Settling in for the winter and a summer festival around the bonfire, people tell those same stories. Sometimes they talk of the goblins hiding in the forest. There’s also the evil crone that tricks travelers off the trail to their death. The old children’s tale is far more familiar…

Long ago power corrupted those with it, namely those who put themselves and their ways above all others. They used dark magic to try and rule over people. They brought terrible storms and earthquakes that still plague the world of Prymis today. They sent magic creatures to assassinate one another, or raised armies of monsters and the undead. In the end, these empires collapsed and all that was left were a few ruins and a small number of people who had hid in the wilderness, huddled together until the skies cleared.

The message is clear even to the children. Don’t go out in the woods alone. Magic is dangerous and evil. And whatever you do, stay out of the ruins.

Even today, abnormal storms of violet lightning, raging floods of water or icy blizzards ravage Prymis. Earthquakes have become rarer but just as devastating. There’s a tale you’ll only hear in such times, when women are urging their children to sleep or if you stay the long watch with the depressed, often drunk men. They say the spirits were not callous as the wars raged. In their sorrow they cried and so too did the heavens, clearing the skies and bringing peace in one brilliant night. It is this the people pray for despite their disbelief.

The facts could be wrong. Youth mocks the stories of its elders. Those eager for the truth seek it out. Certainly a little knowledge is a dangerous thing but are you willing to risk your life for the truth?

Echoes of Eternity

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