Lucian opened his eyes slowly. How long have I been asleep? He thought. Or am I still asleep?
He did not recognize his surroundings nor his attire. He appeared to be dressed in a loose fitting white toga.
“Lucian, you are finally awake my son.” said a voice behind him.
Lucian turned to face the person addressing him and beheld a solidly built elderly man, deeply tanned and sporting a long salt and pepper beard with a similarly colored full head of long hair. As he watched, the welcoming smile faded, replaced by a perplexed frown.
“I sense that you are not truly her in the flesh, but in the spirit.” he mused. “Am I correct my son, are you here on a dream quest?”
“Yes,” replied Lucian “I have come from a far future time in order to fill in some rather large gaps in my memory. I was sent by Emrys.”
“Emrys? Is that rascal still attending you in this far future? No matter son, What are you here to learn?”
“Why, just about everything, um father.” replied Lucian. “I need pretty much a history lesson on the Nexus, it’s politics and it’s inhabitants.”
“Well then,” replied his father, “It appears from your reaction that your memory of me is lacking, I am called Zeus and I am your father.”
“The God Zeus?” exclaimed Lucian.
Zeus let out a roar of laughter. “Gods? Not hardly my boy.” chortled Zeus, “Immortals we may be and endowed with certain Godly powers, but not deities.”
At that moment Emrys entered the chamber. “Sire,” exclaimed Emrys “How can this be, Only moments ago I left you in the dining pavilion! Oh, this must be a dream quest.”
“Yes.” replied Zeus ” It seems you have magicked my son back to this time for a history lesson, and who better to deliver it than you, his Lord Chancellor.”
“Very well” replied Emrys “shall we begin?”
Five hundred years past, The Great Cataclysm struck the continent of Atlantis. Contrary to popular belief, Atlantis did not sink beneath the waves. Instead it was thrust into the multiverse known as The Nexus. It is believed that the influx of magic practitioners and magical beasts to Atlantis during the Thurian Age disturbed the delicate balance of the multiverse culminating in Atlantis and much of the magic in the world being ejected into a void in the Nexus.
For the first century after the cataclysm, Atlantis was benevolently ruled by Zeus who was not only wise, but strongly versed in magic. During the second century of his reign, Zeus became more and more disenchanted with the rigors of ruling The Nexus which consisted of much of the former continent of Atlantis and the smaller landmass of Lemuria. Zeus decided at that time to step down and turn the government to his son Lucian. This did not sit well with his eldest daughter Ayesha. She felt that as the eldest she should inherit the throne and become empress. In order to avert a civil war, Zeus ceded the territory of Lemuria to his daughter. While not at war, Ayesha has instigated frequent attacks upon Atlantis and many attempts on the lives of her brother and members of his court.
It was at this time that the residents of the Nexus became aware of their immortality. Not that they could not die, they just could not stay dead. Upon the death of a Nexan, their essence was transported to one of the multiple Earth’s that existed in the multiverse. Upon the expiration of their mortal life, they reentered the Nexus through a portal. In most instances time flowed at a ratio of twelve to one. So a lifetime of 40 years in the multiverse was only a little less than four year here. Reintegration in the early years resulted in a loss of memory and the returnees often spent years reintegrating into Nexan society.
During the middle of the second century there arose a class of magic practitioners known as Dream walkers. These individuals were able to open portals and escort Nexans back without any loss of memory. The process is delicate and requires precise timing. Many of the returning Nexans adopted the names and of their multiverse identities.
As was the case on Earth prime, the vast majority of the populace have no magical abilities whatsoever. Those that do practice magic usually also have shapeshifter abilities, were creatures are common, mere people less so. Vampires and zombies do not exist in a land of immortals. The emperor of Atlantis and the self styled empress of Lemuria share the powers of everyone in their courts with the exception of shape shifting.
The mythological culture of the survivors of the Thurian cataclysm is peppered with the names of prominent residents of Atlantis and Lemuria.
At that point in the Emyr’s dialogue Lucian perceived a disturbance in the air that resolved itself into a nebulous, though familiar female figure.
“Magda” said Lucian, “Is something wrong? why are you here?”
“I have come to guide you home,” replied the Contessa “You are sorely needed at home.”
As she spoke, Lucians surroundings began to fade.
Once again Lucian opened his eyes. Only this time, Magdalena lay at his side. As he watched, she opened her eyes and smiled tenderly at him.
Lucian glanced around the room and took in the anxious gazes of the members of his ruling council.
“Have I kept you waiting?” Lucian smiled “How long have I been, umm, out of it?”
“Barely twelve hours Sire.” replied Emrys.