Death Gifts the Unimaginable

I thought I’d posted this back when I wrote it, but apparently I didn’t! This is a sequel to my story contained in Paragenesis, “The Rune-Throwing.”

Title: Death Gifts the Unimaginable

Characters: OCs

Word count: 6,044

Author: Thevina

Death Gifts the Unimaginable


Ottar cursed his friend under his breath. Hroth had gone off on another vision quest, deep in the woods near a fjord a couple of leagues away from Freygard. It wasn’t that Ottar was worried per se, but usually Hroth sent at least a whisper-light thought his way, a picture or glimpse of the places he was travelling in the far reaches of harish dreams and mysteries. He kicked against the sides of his horse as he called out repeatedly to Hroth via mindtouch. His cries went out into a vacuum, and that worried him more than anything else. He guided his horse, anxiety creeping insidiously in his blood as he began calling Hroth’s name aloud. After cantering through a particularly dense copse of trees, Ottar saw the edge of the water. He let out a sigh of relief. Hroth was there.


As he drew closer, Ottar’s dis-ease returned. Something was wrong. He hurried his horse along and then hastily dismounted. Hroth sat in his usual crossed leg position, but he was far from still.


“Hroth? What’s wrong?” he asked with rising panic.


Hroth’s fingers dug into the cold earth around him, muttering all the while. Ottar listened intently, but whatever Hroth articulated, it wasn’t a language that Ottar recognized. It was guttural and seemed ancient. But for all Ottar knew, it was total gibberish.




He gently ran his fingers through Hroth’s hair. His thick braids were dishevelled, and sacramental ink was smeared across his strong features. He’d drawn symbols on the back of his left arm, and his one hand was in a state of constant motion, scrabbling at his stump, then the pebbles on the ground, then in his hair. It was Hroth’s eyes that made Ottar gasp aloud and his hands tremble like aspens. Hroth’s warm, ageless eyes were glassy, though he seemed to be focusing on someone or something not far in front of him. There was nothing to be seen save the dark water of the fjord, ambitious fingers of ice stretching greedily from the shore.


“What do you see? Where in Thor’s skies are you? Talk to me!” he begged.


Hroth’s muttering went on. He turned to look at Ottar, whose smile approached his lips and then slunk away. Hroth did not appear to recognise him, instead he continued to speak in some language that seemed to Ottar like some ancestral human tongue.


“I’m getting you out of here,” Ottar murmured fervently.

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Beautiful Things

by Amanda Kear


Characters: Thiede, OCs
Word Count: 4830
Rating: U
Spoilers: none
Summary: An old man discovers that he has skills that Thiede wants to make use of.


Old Mr Murthy was toiling back to his home with a load of firewood, when the Wraeththu came. One moment he was alone in the ruined street, wondering if his neighbour Santosh might have spare eggs to trade. The next the sky split open with a crack and the street was full of armed hara on huge white horses.


The old man cried out with fright, certain that he was about to die under pounding hooves or in a hail of bullets. The community of humans that lived here had thought that their crumbling quarter of the town was of no interest to the Wraeththu. Apparently they had been wrong.


But guns did not fire, nor horses charge. Most of the riders took up positions looking outwards from where the trembling Mr Murthy stood; warriors alert to threats that were more distant and dangerous than one old man with a basket of firewood on his back. One of the riders dismounted and strode up to him.


“You are Rhaghavendra Mahesh Murthy?” It was less a question than a statement, spoken in American accented English. The Wraeththu was unnaturally tall, with the pale skin of a European and hair of such a vibrant red-gold hue that it surely must be dyed. His – her? – clothes were neat and clean, a dazzling white in the sun.


Mr Murthy gave a mute nod. This apparition knew his name?


“I am Thiede. Which house is yours? It will be more pleasant to talk out of the sun, hmm?”


This flame-haired Wraeththu had materialised from nowhere and wanted to talk to him? Was he dreaming? Was this a hallucination brought on by a stroke?


The apparition looked at him expectantly. Mr Murthy hesitantly pointed further up the hill, to the tumbledown apartment building where he and his neighbours lived. Horses wheeled and riders pounded in that direction. He trembled. What had he just unleashed on his neighbours?


The one called Thiede walked towards the building, the white horse ambling along in his wake. Mr Murthy paused, wondering whether he should run…? Then wondering where on Earth he could run to, to escape horses that materialised out of thin air?


Talk. The red-haired one had said talk. If he was lying, at least he’d die in his own home. Mr Murthy trudged wearily up the hill in Thiede’s wake.


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By Amanda Kear

Characters: Mengk/Terzian, Cobweb
Word Count: 3127
Rating: 15
Spoilers: The Bewitchments of Love and Hate
Summary/Author’s Note: I was intrigued as to who Mengk was and how he ended up looking after Terzian.
Disclaimer: The world of Wraeththu belongs to Storm Constantine.


Lord Terzian was dead.


Mengk sat on the bare, scorched earth where the pyre had been. The smell of charcoal was in the air, and nothing but that remained of his Lord. The fire had been encouraged to burn fiercely – hotter than any wood fire had a right to burn – and no fragments remained. No hunks of charred wood, no cremated bone, not even the metal of a ring or belt buckle. There had been ash of course; the flaking residue of flesh and bone indistinguishable from that of timber or clothing. Yet that was now gone as well. Cobweb had taken the scant handfuls left from the fire’s hunger, powdered them in his hands and had thrown them one by one into the wind. All that was Terzian erased from existence by the breeze.


His Lord’s family had ordered the huge pyre to be constructed in the farmland out beyond Galhea. Mengk had thought at first that choice of location might be to permit all the hara of the town to attend the funeral, but that was not the case. The mourners were few: Terzian’s blood relatives, his consort, a few house hara and some high-ranking soldiers who had remained with the garrison at Galhea. Of course, there was that one Gelaming there too – he might call himself Seel har Griselming, but he was of the Gelaming mould and mindset. So a Gelaming was permitted to be present, yet of the ordinary hara that Terzian had ruled, and the rank and file of the army that he had commanded, there were none.


No, the location of the pyre had not been chosen to celebrate Terzian’s life, but because the place was isolated and undistinguished. There was to be no memorial to his lord. No gravestone, no statue, no plaque. Terzian was to be quietly forgotten. The Gelaming had no doubt insisted upon it. That seemed to be their style; to edit the universe and the hara in it until they conformed to the Gelaming ideal of perfection. Terzian’s name would undoubtedly be erased from history as smoothly as those of the myriad human rulers and warriors that Wraeththu had already forgotten.


Mengk would never forget. His grief was raw and sharp and burned as hot as the flames of the pyre. Every day he would remember Terzian’s name.


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A Thousand Tiny Deaths

By Amanda Kear

Characters: OC (Thiede gets a mention)
Word Count: 4070
Rating: U
Spoilers: none
Summary: A tribe of East African hara request help to protect their crops from pests.
Author’s Note: This was inspired by a sequence in the documentary series Human Planet, where people in Tanzania deal with flocks of red-billed quelea in a really extraordinary way. That got me thinking about how Wraeththu would do pest control…
Disclaimer: The world of Wraeththu belongs to Storm Constantine.

The morning the messenger arrived, Dhoruba har Dunia har Ajabu was teaching a class of the town’s younger harlings how the patterns of the seasons differed in various parts of the world. He had shown them images of the four seasons that existed in Wraeththu’s continent of origin and was encouraging them to think how those might affect the hara who lived in those climes.

“Our Long-Dry Season is bad for crops, but it would be their long cold – their winter?” said one harling hesitantly. Dhoruba nodded encouragingly and the harling grinned.

“But they have a Long-Dry too,” said another harling in puzzlement. “Isn’t their summer a Long-Dry?”

“Not exactly,” said Dhoruba. “The high latitude summer is more like the shorter of our dry seasons, with rain falling now and then. In fact, sometimes their summers are like our Short-Wet season. A true Long-Dry is unusual for them and can be a disaster for their farmers.”

The harling wrinkled his nose as he tried to grasp the idea that what was normal for their own farmers might be considered a calamity by those half a world away.

“Does the air grow thin in their winter?” asked the youngest harling. “When they have snow and ice on the ground, is it like Mount Kilimanjaro where the air is thin? Does ice make the air grow thin?”

That led to a discussion of altitude and temperature, and then delighted squeals from the harlings as Dhoruba cast a small majhahn to turn the moisture from the humid air of the classroom into falling flakes of snow.

It was into this mini-bizzard that a young har, probably not long past feybraiha, tumbled into the classroom, trailing a flustered Town Councillor in his wake. “Tiahaar Dhoruba! Tiahaar Dhoruba! Our village needs your help!”

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Para Animalia – New Wraeththu Anthology Call for Submissions

Para Animalia – New Wraeththu Anthology Call for Submissions.

This is a public service announcement on behalf of one of the site moderators, Thevina. There’s a Call for Submissions for the third Wareththu Mythos collection, and I invite all of our Forever Wraeththu authors to read the summary and think about contributing. Our archive has been very quiet in terms of submissions, and I’d love for that to change. Please read and share with any Wraeththu fans you know.

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