originally posted by Izzy
May contain spoilers up to Stormed Fortress.
I'm not 100% sure where this should live, so I figured the best place for it was in the thread for the book that contains it
I thought I'd try to initiate some discussion and speculation about the prologue, and what tales it can tell for the future now that we have finished Arc 3.
So here's the prologue (posted with permission from Janny. Thanks!)
The Wars of Light and Shadow were fought during the third age of Athera, the most troubled and strife-filled era recorded in all of history. At that time Arithon, called Master of Shadow, battled the Lord of Light through five centuries of bloody and bitter conflict. If the canons of the religion founded during that period are reliable, the Lord of Light was divinity incarnate, and the Master of Shadow a servant of evil, spinner of dark powers. Temple archives attest with grandiloquent force to be the sole arbiters of truth.
Yet contrary evidence supports a claim that the Master was unjustly aligned with evil. Fragments of manuscript survive which expose the entire religion of Light as fraud, and award Arithon the attributes of saint and mystic instead.
Because the factual account lay hopelessly entangled between legend and theology, sages in the seventh age meditated upon the ancient past, and recalled through visions the events as they happened. Contrary to all expectation, the conflict did not begin on the council stair of Etarra, nor even on the soil of Athera itself; instead the visions started upon the wide oceans of the splinter world, Dascen Elur.
This is the chronicle the sages recovered. Let each who reads determine the good and evil for himself.
An assumption… the sages mentioned are resident on Athera, which is, when it comes to this body of work, could be a very broad assumption
I think we can get from the above that in the seventh age, Lysaer's religion is no longer around. It would also seem that the F7 are not present (for which they are probably thankful). "Fragments of manuscript…" implies that Althain Tower is either not there, inaccessible or the records have hopelessly decayed. It is, after all, an additional 3 ages into the future, which could mean 10's of thousands of years.
I could also interpret the text to imply that the Paravians are either no longer present, or that the current human residents of Athera respect the free wilds without the need for the compact/high kings structure (which, I believe, was Davien's goal).
It could also be assumed that the Koriani are not present (at least in their "current" form), because the records held in crystal would not decay.
The long and short of it… I think that Janny has some nasty surprises in store for us. The clich’d plot line of "the good guy sets everything right" won't apply here. I can see the end of Arc 5 seeing the end of the F7, the Koriani and, perhaps, the Paravians.