Archives for the month of: March, 2017

Dustless | Volume 11, Mask [iii]

Published 05 • 03 • 2017

The third of the four volumes in the Mask phase of the novel.

Precis | In a village huddled on the Endless Plains, through a long night, on the eve of a great festival, villagers keep their vigil. To pass the time, they distract themselves with stories and games.

Terrible forces may assemble in quiet places. In the intricate designs on cards, strange figures emerge. Creations of an ancient culture, no longer understood, but long revered: forces from the depths of ages, stirring, causing shadows and ripples on Time’s surface.

Gazing into the world of a mysterious system, playing with the fire of unknown powers, the villagers entertain a masked guest. But who is he? And what may be seen should the mask fall off?



Dustless | Volume 11
is approximately 290 pp./a5

Australia | Dustless | Volume 11
Brazil
| Dustless | Volume 11
Canada
| Dustless | Volume 11
France
| Dustless | Volume 11
Germany
| Dustless | Volume 11
India
| Dustless | Volume 11
Italy
| Dustless | Volume 11
Japan
| Dustless | Volume 11
Mexico
| Dustless Volume 11
Netherlands
| Dustless | Volume 11
Spain
| Dustless | Volume 11
UK
| Dustless | Volume 11
US | Dustless | Volume 11

ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number) | B06XFGWPMM

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Heavier than a thousand suns, lighter than a protium atom…

Slowly, slowly climbing the stairs in the vegetable palace of the King of Dreams, winding and winding gradually higher…

On the Siloso, the circular river, where the Lord my father standing at the rail of a fragile cruiser, among the crowds of craft, is a swan among gulls…

In a garden in the pleasure district of Shigoga, where I drew my sword and fought the famous duel of bubbles: those girls in their sumptuous robes giggling and sniggering, heads rocking and eyes blinking, lush and retarded, spirits sunken and sluggish as they float on the stream of the prince’s soul-stealing intoxicants

To arrive in a room in the Ghosts-of-Angels Palace, to look through the window on the chamber where snow is eternally falling from an invisible ceiling, and where, it is rumoured, sometimes a hunter may be seen, sometimes a lord wandering lost in winter

To the children with their little books, to the limited ones with their little dreams: left

We moved on through the crow-haunted wastes of the Desolate Cantons, met a warrior with nose broken in his youth, half an angel and half a boxer, smoked his pipe of raw kaziah, left us all to the sleep of the doomed

Heavier than a falling moon, lighter than a single feather, a feather floating from the iridescent wing of a jester hummingbird purring among the sulphur-throated blossoms of dark orange night-scenting hibiscus

In the scales, the throne of O, set against a single finger’s caress

To be in the regal state beyond the laws

What would you choose?

To be everyone and no one

To be there to feel her touch, to be

so softly undressed

To be high

To be fine

To be Dustless

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It was like a sun rising.

From behind the sun in the east, a second sun — a sun rising at night.

Most people didn’t wake: they slept through that strange double sunrise. Perhaps they opened their eyes, briefly, felt the shadows in the room twist for a moment, but then they sank back into sleep: it was too hard to wake, they were tired, they needed to rest, and besides, they felt sure they knew what the next day would bring.

And for them, it was true, the day brought what they expected.

You have to be lucky to witness a miracle: lucky to open your eyes at the right time, to be in the place the miracle begins. To keep your eyes open as the change develops. To follow the flow of the shadows, and track down the source of the light.

The next day, when the sun rose in the east, there came no second sun. And most people went on with their lives, aware only that, during the previous night, there had been a faint shift in things, like a settling of cargo in a ship’s hold — a slight settling, but still, one the crew couldn’t quite understand.

Such tiny tremors. The brief kick of a foot inside a womb.

The ripple a tadpole makes as it crosses a pond.

Most people went on, that next day, just as they’d been before.

A few people, though, had woken up: they’d seen the hidden sun, rising at night — seen the ordinary moon blotted out by an alien dazzle. They sensed the arrival. They recognised the change.

Now there is a stranger among them. And because of this stranger, they, too, become strangers.

Like a new sun, a greater sun — like a sunrise at noon, blotting out the lesser light of the old sun.

Like old thoughts — old, small thoughts — when a brilliant new thought rises.

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