This is only the start of a Science Fantasy book I started on many years ago. It’s set in a 1900-1910 technological era but with magic still a force to reckon with. Putting this prologue out there might just get my motivation to some day complete the book.
“The game is set. Only his will shall decide the outcome”. The heavy velvet robes swayed as the two contenders rose from the table. Matching their wits and their insights was not uncommon. But never like this. Never had they played the game encompassing such a great arena and with this many elements. The game of life itself required more than sets of ivory and ebony pieces and a marble board. It included will – whatever that was – free or not; The proof will be the outcome.
The dark eyes of Salidus Taramostran rested for a while on his adversary. Temor Akatraz did a graceful job of hiding his emotions. A slight tremble around his nose however revealed the suspense. A brilliant mind, a genius scientist, physicist and mathematician. He knew a thousand ways a man could go mad and a couple of how to cure him. Temor could outriddel any man alive. A champion chess player, loving the game, loving the win. He was never a nerd, he knew his ways around women. Many a woman had fallen for the blue eyes, fair but stern expression, never revealing his true self. His body almost as fit as his mind. Stubbornness had gotten him far in life.
None of them looked nearly as old as they were. They still possessed that zest in life, that willingness to pick up the glove and to carry forward to victory. Both were intent on winning, if not for the same reasons.
Salidus’ gaze wandered, to other places, as usual. In and out of reality, of fantasy. An artist at heart, feeble to certain eyes, strong to others. A sort of mystery hung around the wise man. Creepy, yet calm. He was already leaving the game for the love of something else – a poem perhaps? Or maybe a little tune, humming ever so slightly in his mind. In stark opposition to Temor who never would leave this game. It would haunt him like that annoying little tune humming and chanting to rub away any lack of irritation. Temor wondered: “Did I pick the right boy? Of course it’s impossible to know on beforehand, but did I predict this one right?” The thought tormented him. He wanted to be sure like in chess where he would always hold more possibilities in his mind at once than any other man or creature. “Chess… but this is different… maybe… or maybe not. My predictions must be right, and so this is no different than a game of chess. I know the state of this game as we started and I know the rules. The outcome is bound to be set. It will be mate, for sure”.