Submissions from the March 2021 challenge: An introductory letter to a new pen pal or pen friend. I hope you enjoy them. If possible it would be useful if you could read the submissions, provide constructive feedback to the author and make any general comments over on our Facebook page or if you comment below, please tag the author and title.
Dika Guis – An introductory letter to a new pen pal or pen friend
This letter is written by the main character of my last story (as we entered the tunnel, February 2021), Fira. It is written several months before she finds herself in that tunnel. Setting: in a fictional world, on the continent/country Ethrea, in the capitol Grand Prios. When she is in that tunnel it is to find a solution to the nearing end of the world…which may or may not have something to do with dragons….
I write to you, because Tarel, the head librarian here in Grand Prios, has told me of you and your research into the lost Dragon Lore. My name is Fira, I’m 27 years old and I have been working as a translator and librarian in the university library since I graduated 6 years ago. I’ve a degree in ancient languages; languages nobody cared much about, but that have become more relevant just recently.
As you may or may not have heard, things are not going well in Ethrea. The weather has gone wild, some days the clouds are so thick it barely gets light (which is rather depressing), there have been lots of tremors and volcanic eruptions on the continent, way more than normal, and now people have started suffering from a strange illness. An illness that manifests in the mind. Different people respond in different ways, but the main trend shows peoples’ behavior is getting more volatile and erratic. Both suicides and homicides have gone up, considerably. People are unsettled and afraid.
The government has ordered Tarel to come up with answers and solutions.
So, my job is to go through the old texts here and find what I can. During my research I have encountered references to ‘Laroa Dragonia’ or ‘Dragon Lore’. It appears to reference a prophecy about the end days with phrases like: ‘The skies will grow dark and oppressive’ and ‘The earth will tremble and breathe fire’. Rather ominous, I know, but also strangely fitting with what’s happening here. When I discussed my findings with Tarel, he suggested I write to you, as you have been studying ancient texts in the Monastery of Taa Havan. Apparently you are fascinated by all things dragon? Which I must say is starting to interest me too. I was always sure dragons were a thing of fiction or superstition, but the more references I find, the more I wonder….
Anything you can share would be greatly appreciated. I would love to come visit sometime and meet you and see the Karoa Mountains, but as the trip there would take about 2 months I doubt I’ll get there anytime soon! This letter, sent by pajaro, will reach you much faster!
So, that is the official business done. I’ll leave it there as my friend Pjotr is waiting to go out for a night on the town. Pjotr is a silver smith, and a bloody good one. We’ll go to a bar called Terra Dagonai, have you ever been, when you were here in the capitol? It’s amazing, like a fairy hill, or what the owner Mateo thinks a fairy hill looks like anyways. Their dark ale is the best! And hopefully I’ll run into this girl I met there the other night. Her name is Esramai and she’s a professional treasure hunter, which is way cool. She walked into the bar with her companions looking for food and a bed.
After Mateo had shown them to their rooms and they had stored their baggage, they came back down for supper. Esramai drew my attention immediately. She stood out, not because she was the only woman in the group, which she was, or because she was beautiful, which she also was, but because of her presence. There are people in this world that just fill up a space. They are so present and so full of life that you can’t not see them. They shine this powerful light on the world and we are but moths. Or, well, maybe I should speak for myself, Fira, the moth, that’s me. Anyway, we met that night and became good friends, very good friends. But to tell you the story of the rest of that night would be a bit much for our first correspondence!
I hope this letter finds you well and you can write me back with lots of helpful information.
Fira, assistant librarian to Tarel
Grand Prios, Ethrea