Monday, February 13, 2012

Fallway 1 - Paula Downing King

"In Rhesaa star-system, a binding of twelve stars dominated by a great blue-white star, Quevi'ali's four kin-alliances, called iruta in Avelle speech, sought a refuge to repair their ship and to rebuild their breeding numbers, not only for Quevi'ali but for a daughter-ship; doubling their strength for the return to the Predator wars. On a large asteroid circling a lesser companion of the blue-white star, Quevi'ali had concealed itself beneath naked rock and begun a great building of a subterranean City. For decades, then centuries, the Avelle brooding grew steadily, the original four iruta fracturing into a dozen new bondings, each building its own great tier of two hundred levels, expanding outward and downward into the rocky depths, tempering their strength in tier wars for territory and influence. Yet the Avelle of Quevi Ltir did not rebuild their ship nor begin their daughter ship; instead, they lingered in their City past all accounting, until even the Avelle servant classes, conditioned by gene and rank never to question their superiors, wondered why the Song of Returning seemed forgotten.

For five centuries Quevi'ali had lain in its subterranean cavern, a dark hulk rarely visited. The Star Leader, hereditary captain of Quevi'ali and the Principal vested with the charge of its rebuilding, found other reason in the City for other affairs, without explanation. Among the six Principals who ruled Quevi Ltir, the Principals of Law and Song rose to new influence, supplanting the primacy of the Star Leader, and contested with each other, deftly building shifting alliances with Mind and Battle and Science, never trusting the other, growing crafty and wise as they subordinated lesser kin-alliances to their purposes. The tier wars grew dangerous and more frequent as the Principals contested, threatening extinguishment of whole tiers and the ending of brood-lines, but still the Avelle did not rebuild their ships."

3.5 out of 5