#34 Interludes and contemplations
The quiet in the eye of the storm
Previously: The detectives of the Specialist Dimensional Command have had a difficult start to the year. First Kaminski was trapped inside a shipping container and smuggled off to another dimension, then a dangerous creature attacked London. As the detectives mop up the pieces, players further afield consider the consequences…
This chapter unlocks 17 June 2022. Early access subscribers can read immediately.
Bruglia (aka the Mesa). Palinor.
The season was cold, the mesas offering little in the way of protection. The city was built for the baking Brightsun heat, when enclosed courtyards and stone dwellings made perfect sense. Come the depths of Frostfield and the lack of formal heating systems in most homes became uncomfortably apparent. The most better nights didn’t last for long, mercifully, but those few weeks felt long each year.
None of that was a problem in the palace, of course. Daryla was quite comfortable with the open fire in the centre of her chamber, or the fires of the central dining hall, with its huge extraction chimneys that were larger than most houses. She felt entirely luxuriant wrapped in her furs while she ate grapes and strawberries imported from Mid-Earth. If there was one thing the Mid-Earthers were good at, it was getting things from one place to another. The notion of the shipping container had not caught on in Palinor: cargo unloaded from the portal station was transferred to a true menagerie of transports. Horse-drawn, camel-borne, wyvern-slung - there was no shortage of imagination when it came to moving things inefficiently.
Daryla’s fortunate circumstances were ironically the precise source of her discomfort. She was all too conscious of the plumes of smoke rising from the palace, drifting over the city, mocking its inhabitants as they huddled together for warmth. Such was the privilege of the aristocracy in the city states of Palinor. She was highly educated, even at only eighteen, trained as a skilled micrologist and heir to a family wallet that meant she would never need to work a day in her life.
Comfortable. That was the fate of a princess on Palinor. She would wield increasing power, as it was passed to her, so long as she maintained the family name.
She pulled the furs a little tighter around her as she sat on her bed and turned the page of the morning’s newspaper. There were the usual reports of infighting in the other city states, and of how wonderful everything was in Bruglia. Everything on the up, always getting better. Daryla always skipped to the section of the paper that covered foreign news - as in, foreign dimension. What happened in the other realities somehow felt more real than anything on Palinor.