by Grant Smuts
I’m a little tired of waiting. So, before the launch, I’ll be posting a few excerpts from the upcoming novel.
What follows is the opening paragraphs of the opening chapter (referred to as Fragments in the text).
A note on the text
An old myth of Amarith states that one of the great Aions of old fell to the world and his body shattered. There his flesh was devoured by primeval men, who in turn received sentience, and a small portion of the Aion’s consciousness. It is thought to be at the root for man’s desire for divinity, and the cause for their wonder at the stars – for the will of the old beast of time and space is to return to its brethren in the darkness beyond Amarith.
Through the course of centuries, it is thought that the will of the Aion manifests through rare empaths, and conveyed from the minds of artists and poets to their respective mediums. What was found was a single thread, extending from the darkness of the unknowable past. Valmer, archmage of the Synod of Ruhnd has begun to compile the history of these fragments, to set it down that he might uncover one of the greatest mysteries behind the dreams of men.
He has referred to the muted consciousness as ‘The Hollow Dream’, viewing the expression of these thoughts as the gasp of a broken, timeless being, desperate to become whole once again.
Fragment 1: Beneath a False Sky
There is no truth.
This dream reflects on the myths of the ancient days, and what was contained and repeated, a cycle without ending. At the start of it all, something fled from the first radiance that birthed the universe, to the very edge of darkness and silence. I have seen them: the scourges from the outer dark. They press against the paper thin walls of men’s sanity.
Eons from that moment, a story begins, in the middle of where it ends, and where it ends it begins again, feeding off itself, growing stronger even as it is lost in the dreams of terrors beyond our world.
Even now, I cannot say that I have not been lost to the madness. Yet here I stand, another hollow dream, observing the events unfold.
I cannot say who will read this account. Perhaps it does not matter. Perhaps all that matters is that it is set down – a story that must empty from my mind before night falls. The candle wanes. The wind howls.
I have very little time left. But enough dread and musing. This is where it began.
– A Hollow Dream