New lore ~ The map

A sneak peek at the next thrilling Lore of the Underlings episode,
which I’m writing as we speak (Episode 4 ~ Preview 22)

Picking up from the previous post, John Cap and Vaam give Morio a special task to help plot the course of their coming quest…

Map of Syland ~ cartography by John Klobucher

Morio looked a bit deflated. John Cap tried to perk him up.

“Maybe ‘O can be in charge of starting to think about our route back. We’ll need to go a different way seeing that it will be on foot.”

“Yes, I think that’s a fine idea.” Vaam gave her young friend a grateful wink.

“Have you still got that map of yours ‘O?”

In a moment of panic the moored man went pale, blood drained from his moon-like face. “The map?! Oh my! With all the commotion… I wonder if it’s where I…” And he reached for the thick sock around his right ankle.

His fingers went fishing and finally found the what that they sought and pulled it out. His pallor waxed back to rosy relief. “You know, I favor a heavy stocking and it has once again served me well. Nothing’s better in dark times of crisis like this. You really should try it, John Cap!”

“Sure…” said John Cap quizzically. “Next time I go shopping.”

Morio hardly heard the young man, so busy he was at working his find. At last it opened up. From a tiny square that fit in the palm unfolded a large sheet of leafy parchment. A long, ragged edge gave it the look of a page torn hastily from a book.

He turned the loose leaf over twice then around and upside down in a squint. “I see that the eyes no longer have it,” he noted to himself. “Nay… it’s still a measure dim in this room to study cartography such as this — a golden example of olden arts too fine to size up in the slightest darkness.”

He lifted the map toward the beam streaming in and pulled it taut between his hands. “Not beyond the shadow of a doubt but at least I can make some things out now. Border lines and legend runes… a title, ‘Sempyre of Syland,’ atop… It’s bound to help us navigate, if just to show the state we’re in.”

Morio rose to rest on his knees and pressed his face against the leaf. Then he muttered a few more words to himself as his nose took a brief tour of the coast.

“But more than that? The jury’s still out. I’m looking for some sign of magic in it. The ability to let us foresee. A hint of the power of prophecy. Or some kind of spirit locked in its key who can map a path through times to be and chart our future history…”

He lowered the page and sighed. “Perhaps I’ve set my sights too high… with hopes that border on pie in the sky… Or maybe I just need to shed more light. Come at this from another angle…”

… to be continued. Stay tuned!


Previous previews of Episode 4:
1 ~ The watchman
2 ~ Dreams
3 ~ Halo
4 ~ Netherworld
5 ~ Semperor
6 ~ Halcyon days
7 ~ Punch
8 ~ Enshadowed
9 ~ Pale ghost
10 ~ Needle
11 ~ New light
12 ~ Something looms…
13 ~ The gray girl’s blues
14 ~ Flower of the field (original vision)
14 ~ Flower of the field (another vision)
15 ~ Hearthland
16 ~ Errant mission
17 ~ A few good men
18 ~ The watchful summer moon
19 ~ Never forget
20 ~ The empty sea
21 ~ The clue


The illuminated lore project is an ongoing collaboration of
photographer Michael Leacher
and Lore of the Underlings author John Klobucher

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