In this excerpt from Stars Fall Out, Vilari walks into her new life as the first-ever student of a mysterious, engineered magic, and finds that Professor Ghordaa lives up to the rumors. This is another bit that I originally posted in my newsletter. I also read the full scene at last year’s Diverse Speculative Fiction reading event.
Professor Ghordaa plunked a variety of instruments down in front of me—at the time, I had no idea what they were—and said, “It’s quite simple, really,” which should have been warning enough. Does anyone ever say, “It’s quite simple, really: the sun sets each night,” or “It’s quite simple, really: you just add the two numbers together,” or “It’s quite simple, really: it’s only a three-letter word?”
No, they do not. They say, “It’s quite simple, really,” and then follow-up with a convoluted explanation that only makes sense to someone whose brain is a labyrinth of analogies and equations, and can translate one into the other.
And that was how he explained the magic to me. In so many words.