A happy couple hug each other close in the night, besides them a babe stirs in its new cot and then, mercifully, stills back into a deeper sleep. At the far end of the room an alchemic chest houses dozens of bottles of chilled milk. Their benefactor has promised to provide for the child for as long as they need.
“I don't understand, you had the power to live again. Power greater than a god's. Why would you waste it on a handful of strangers?”
Jimmy looked up at his pacing body and gave a long sigh.
“I thought about it, course I did. Thought about giving it to you too.” He had to stifle a laugh at the looks of surprise and then persecution that crossed his face. “But what would that have helped? The primals had their day, the world doesn't have room for their kind any more.”
He looked at the candle on his desk, its flame motionless, a disconcertingly steady glow illuminating the documents and diagrams scattered around it.
“Every day the Strossbourgian's are working on another Perfected Warrior. Some Valyddi goatherd heads off to seek his fortune and another would-be god is born. Who knows how many of them are amongst the Southern Islanders already. Founders, who knows how many are hiding amongst our Guild?”
Rooting about the papers before him he pulls a map of the continent to the surface. Scores of red blots stain the landscape.
“The Upheaval might have bought us some time, but the stasis is coming back fast. Far too fast. There are too many Actors, their numbers keep growing, and even if we tried to cut them all down, then the act of doing so would probably create more”
“We're not going to find a way out in relics of the past, Dines is right about that much at least. Our solution has to be revolutionary. Still I have hopes that his method won't be required; simply destroying everything? No, some manner of transmutation should suffice. If the world cannot sustain humanity, why humanity will just have to go somewhere else, or become something else. Probably both.
Fatekeeper crossed his arms and shook his head in exasperation.
“I fail to see how a dozen slightly superhuman infants are going to help with that.”
Jimmy leant back and steepled his fingers.
“My friend, haven't I told you that children are the future? These ones just happen to have a tad more potential.”
He glances over at the alchemical still in the corner of the room, a dozen exotic reagents smouldering or bubbling all to produce a painfully slow drop of milky white fluid into a waiting beaker.
“Besides who said anything about them being superhuman?”