Setting the Board: First draft

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This is from my current work-in-progress, Setting the Board, third in the Preparations for War series


You play with fire, you're going to get burned.

Abraham Lincoln once observed, "Nearly all men can stand adversity. If you want to test a man's character, give him power." It might scandalize my fellow Americans to say it, but Mr. Lincoln failed his own test by almost any measure. Suspension of habeus corpus, our first conscripted armies, breaking West Virginia off as a separate state with only the thinnest of technically legal fictions. But he'd been a national hero in the United States, because history is written by the winners.

There is no way to give a person power that can only be used for good. Any power can be abused, especially government power. If there's one lesson we should have learned as a species by now, that's it. So it didn't surprise anyone that demons could subvert human rulers. It's just that we never knew who until the damage was done.

But let me start at the beginning.

It felt like we were coming home.

Asina and I had been working to improve the lot of Calmenans for most of our adult lives. It had started within a year of Imperial contact; I'd rescued her from being a breeding slave to the human agaani of Calmena. She'd turned out to be operant; after her training she was recruited to return to Calmena and selected me as her assistant. We'd spent twenty Imperial years (35 local) in N'yeschlass, teaching them about blacksmithing and related fields that used blacksmithing's products, during which time I'd also become operant. Then we'd spent over forty Imperial years in Windhome Bay, advancing their art of shipbuilding and related things like fishing and trading. In that time, the people of Wimarglr Continent, southern Taalmisch Continent, and the Atlantean Chain of islands between them had advanced from barely Iron Age to mostly 19th century Earth equivalent.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Dan Melson published on April 26, 2019 9:02 AM.

The Preparations for War Series was the previous entry in this blog.

The Connected Realms Setting is the next entry in this blog.

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