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A to Z Challenge 2019: V is for Veranesh

Welcome to my A to Z Challenge 2019 posts. This year I’ll be writing about the world of Kinyal which is the setting of my epic fantasy novels and short stories. These posts offer insights into the world’s history, locations, and factions, but do not spoil any of the events or secrets from the novel.

You don’t need to read them in order, and as the challenge progresses, I’ll do my best to add links to related topics for each post.

The powerful player

Veranesh is not as widely known as perhaps he should be, at least among humans. Some yalari remember well that cunning demon who exceeded in games of power and manipulation all yalari play. His plots were complex and perfectly executed, and whoever would have found themselves Veranesh’s target, would not escape the traps set no matter how much they tried. Some claimed that even though powerful, he’d rarely rely on it alone when it came to his goals, and most of his successes stem from deep understanding of his kin’s nature.

Because of that, he never bothered with even a single pact, so it came as a surprise when his interests shifted, from playing power games with his brethren toward the world of Kinyal and its inhabitants.

The path to destruction

When Zemarion’s scholars and arcanists studied the nature of summoning demonlings to Kinyal and pondered whether it would be possible to bring a more powerful yalari to the world, Veranesh offered his help. It remains unclear how he had learned about their interests, but the few chronicles that survived the Cataclysm note that his insights and suggestion became invaluable during the search for a way to invite yalari to Kinyal. Several other yalari were involved as well, but in the end, Veranesh was chosen as the first one to cross between the worlds, mostly due to lack of any pacts at the time. Zemarion’s arcanists saw it as a simple way to ensure none of their colleagues would fight over the prestige of having a pact with the first demon to be summoned. Others were concerned how the pact between a human and a yalari would affect the summoning.

Not much is known about the days preceding the event as the witnesses died in the Cataclysm, and nobody knows what went wrong. High mages claimed that destruction was always Veranesh’s goal, and even though some arcanists expressed their doubts about his motives, the facts remained: whatever transpired during the summoning, caused the Cataclysm, and if not for the high mages efforts, the wave of raging magic could have reached much farther than it did, maybe even threatening Tivarashan.

As for Veranesh himself, he was destroyed during that event, and some say that many yalari breathed out with relief at the news. When it comes to humans, his impact on the world was immeasurable, and his deeds undoubtedly change the course of history, but nowadays only a handful of arcanists knows his name, and if anyone speaks about him, they say simply: the demon who caused Cataclysm.

If you’d like a taste of the world, my free collection contains two of the stories from my free short story collection are set in Kinyal. The Arcanist and the Mage Killer and Scourges, Spells, and Serenades tell of the early adventures of Kamira and Veelk, the main protagonists of the upcoming novel.

You can get the collection by signing up to my newsletter.

All posts in this year’s challenge (links updated with new posts):

Arcane Magic || Barriers and Circles || The Cataclysm || Devanshari  || Essence || Free City of Kaighal || Gildya Magna || High Magic || Imbued Stones || Juamha || Kamira Altrainne || Languages || Mage Killers || Nightflies & Other Creatures || Origins of the Idea || Politics || Qinyalarethe || Religion || Suzhaul || Tivarashan || Unclaimed Lands || Veranesh

Joanna Maciejewska

Joanna Maciejewska is a fantasy and science fiction author who enjoys all things SFF: books, movies, and video games. Her short stories appeared in magazines and anthologies in Polish and in English. Her epic fantasy adventure series, starting with By the Pact, is available in ebook and paperback at all major retailers.

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