[Do] Choose their fates!

(Previously: The Jade Foxes, The Pouncing Tigers, The Wild Unicorns)

No matter where they’re from or how they got to the temple, every pilgrim shares a common experience from their time at home: At some point, they faced two troubles, but only one of which could be resolved. The unresolved trouble eventually lead them to the temple in the center of the sky.

Every day this week, I’ll be posting the names and backgrounds of a group of characters along with the two troubles they faced at home. I’m asking you to help me decide the fates of all these characters. Just pick which trouble to resolve, A or B. Feel free to suggest how that trouble gets resolved, too. 🙂

The Coiled Serpents
Six children (or, in one case, a young jellyfish) living in or around the Living Storm, an enormous, ancient nebula of rain and lightning!

Marita Broach (Prophesied to Defeat the Living Storm)
Born to a prophecy, the Stormkeeper is destined to keep the Living Storm away from our world. She will stand atop the highest peaks, shake her fist at the lightning and spit upon the thunder. She will keep our people safe, dry and protected.

• Despite prophecy, the storm comes anyway and Mayor Gaina demands Marita pay for not fulfilling the promise of protection.

• Ben Talderly, an old man and Marita’s most devout believer, had his house flooded by the storm’s waters. He lost everything.

Rico Lloyd (Scavenger of the Storm’s Debris)
We’ve got the best skyfarm this side of the blue, lemme tell ya. All those other worlds are just big balls of dirt that send out ships to the storm. We’ve got it smarter, our whole world is a bunch of little asteroids netted together with ropes and wooden beams. When the storm spirits send their beast through here every year, our nets and harpoons capture the junk that gets caught up in its winds. It’s always a good harvest.

• Despite pleas and offerings, the storm spirits have been uncooperative. No storm has come through in over three years.

• The skyfarmers are running out of materials to replace the ropes and beams. The world is literally falling apart.

Foster Cicali (Renegade Circus Acrobat)
I’m flying high above the crowds. This is always my favorite part, when I leave one trapeze and approach another. To the rubes, it’s only a blink, a drum roll and a clashing of a cymbal. But to me it’s forever, that little moment where I’m totally free from the circus life. Always keeping just one step away from the storm and the xenophobic lightning tribes that control it. In that second between trapeze, I can just fly away free like a pilgrim. Above clouds, not crowds.

• The cleric of the lightning tribes declares that the circus is immortal and calls all the lightning tribes to a holy war.

• A tendril of the storm reaches out across the heavens and separate’s foster’s skyship from the rest of the caravan.

Magnolia (Aspiring Steward of the Living Storm)
The lightning tribes are heralds of the living storm, guiding the great beast towards our enemies. It is our divine mandate to rein in this creature, making sure it only harms those who deserve harming. Some day, I will be allowed to unleash the storm myself and witness the true power of our tribe with my own eyes.

• Magnolia discovers that clerics have been guiding the storm towards innocent worlds, not just enemies of the tribes.

• Magnolia sneaks out into the heart of the storm and sees a bizarre jellyfish-like creature living there. The storm isn’t a ravenous beast, it’s someone’s home.

Olin Devis (Spy in the Domina’s Court)
Everyone underestimates what a child understands. The courtiers never hold their tongue when I’m in the room, even though I’m the Domina’s daughter. As spy and investigator for the royal family, I have single-handedly prevented five coups, prevented two wars and halted those reformist bastards’ obscene plans. They still have no idea who could be leaking information.

• The courtiers are conspiring with the clerics to bring the full wrath of the living storm to Olin’s world and using the chaos as a cover for a coup.

• The Domina is secretly paying the lightning tribe to destroy neighboring fiefdoms to control their precious lands.

Ok Quass (Jellyfish living inside the Storm)
No one knows we’re here and we must keep it that way. The solids all think the living storm is just some great beast, migrating through the sky and wreaking havoc on innocent words. They don’t see the nucleus of the storm, the rushing sphere of water, the Cluster who call it home. The lightning tingles against our tentacles. The smell of ozone excites our membranes. Still, the youngling Ok Quass wishes to see what lies beyond the edge of the storm.

• When Ok secretly swims out beyond the sphere of water, into the sky, she is spotted by a solid. Now she must face punishment by the Cluster.

• A flock of sea gulls penetrates the storm’s barrier and is attacking the Cluster directly.

That’s it for this week. Next Monday I’ll be posting an update on general Do status.

Thanks so much to Peter Aronson who, as always, has been far too generous with his creative energies.