IN LATE DY 1491 ZULLY THE LIAR WAS CONTRACTED BY THE KA-RONE GAZETTEER TO PROVIDE A SERIES OF DISPATCHES ON THE NEW PROVINCES, THE VERR, AND OTHER BENIGHTED POINTS FAR FROM THE BRIGHT CENTER OF CIVILIZATION. AFTER HIS SECOND STOPOVER ON GENTLE ISLAND, ZULLY’S THIRD DESTINATION WAS WARIFO. THIS “ARTICLE” WAS RECEIVED BY THE GAZETTEER IN THE SECOND MONTH OF 1492. ZULLY HAS NOT BEEN HEARD FROM SINCE.
LETTER FROM WARIFO
I have come to believe there is no such place as Warifo. We’ve been led to believe that it’s one of the dozen pathetic little island-states that pay tribute to the Diamond Isle, and that its sole claim to significance is as the site of the beginning of the Last War. But I have been considering these statements for a week now, here in the garden built where the ocean threatens to swallow the Cliffside, and I begin I think to see truth.
Whether there ever was a Last War, I don’t know. The evidence is all around us, surely: the geopolitics of the Mother Countries, the strange wreckage that even today, so long after, still sometimes falls from the sky or rises up from the sea. But could these not all be an elaborate lie? Increasingly I doubt the truths I was taught. I doubt the glorious history of Ka-Rone, the infallibility of Living Memory, the dismal emptiness beyond the Celestial Firmanent. I doubt the invincibility of the Unified Front Navy. I doubt the primitive and unwholesome nature of the zoetics. I doubt both the official denials of Fire-in-Water Land and the divers spurious rumors that call it a land of infinite fancy.
I have lived in a cage of lies my whole life, and only now do I begin to recognize the bars. I must learn some true thing, some single fixed point about which all the cosmos might whirl. I know that many who were once my peers have alighted upon the dark wells of power and sworn fealty to the Most High, but that is not a path for me. I will go another way. I will find the thing that is worthwhile in this world, or else I shall collapse into despair and shrivel.
Repeating-the-Mistakes-of-Youth meant well, but it retreated inward, and it is the world outside my head that concerns me. I have heard the best mine has to offer; I must look to an Other for guidance now. The Velvet-Men, or the Jelly God? Do you need to ask?
I will meet Yomno, or I will die trying.
— Zully the Liar
SEE ALSO: the Kingdom of Weal and Woe, Living Memory (Gaps In), Yomno Islands
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