Sneak peek into the Last Army

Let me give you a sneak peek into the Last Army.

Man is hollow,
Life is a shell,
Don’t you dare say,
that All is Well.

-the Prophet Joshua

3017, The arrival

Joshua was hiding beneath the rubble. He was holding his breath, body tensed for the moment they discover him. It was his ill luck to fall asleep in a basement while foraging. Fires from the last battle were still hot when he had risked himself to get a fortune of weapons and armor; and now he was trapped. It was one of the bigger battles he had seen in his 473 years. A god and a very dillapilated group of defenders had assembled to waylay a contingent of foot, to find themselves trapped within two flanks of cavalry. The battle was short & brutal. Not even a single one of the defenders had been able to escape. And when they killed the god, even a mere mortal like him had been able to feel it from miles away & he had immediately departed to arrive at the massacre scene as soon as possible.

But a box full of canned food had found its way into hia hands and he didn’t try to save for later. So he ate and ate, and finally settled into the basement to sleep. But when he woke up, he discovered that an even larger army of darklings was camped over him, and the basement was right beneath the command centre.

He heard the footsteps recede as a voice called out. “All clear. Bring him in.” Joshua sagged with relief at these words and thanked the gods; if any of them was left.

He stiffened at the sound of more feet and a raspy voice called out “Good Evening, lord. I see that you have….” The voice was interrupted with a bang of flesh on wood. A heavy male voice called out “Don’t try my patience, slave. Tell me why have you abandoned your post, and begone.” His words were followed by silence and Joshua heard someone shuffle. “As you wish, Lord. Their army is divided into 6 legions and the fourth is about to appear in the mortal realm within the hour, at exactly where we are. I took the liberty of making them believe that no more than 5000 darklings are stationed here. They will find a surprise when they arri…” This time the voice was interrupted by a swish, a thud, a swish, bang and a groan. Then silence.

Seconds passed by. Then the heavy male voice called out, with a definite hint of fear. “W-who a-are you? ” A swish and a thunk sounded and a voice called out. “I am Akshat, scout of the 47th legion.” It paused then continued “Remember this Joshua,” Joshua became still as a rock. “We are thousands, and when you will look at what happened up here, do not forget that I was only one. Hope is not yet lost. the Last Army survives” Then there were sounds of receding footsteps. How had that person known Joshua was beneath the floor? And what had he done to the others? Joshua was just thinking about creeping out for a look when he saw & heard; rather felt the biggest explosion he had seen in his life. Of pure Golden light, it made the earth shake like a thresher and Joshua thought of only one thing before the rubble hit him on his head. Akshat was not someone to mess with.

Stories about the prophet had many beginings. Most of them are quite close to the truth. The Prophet Joshua emmerged from the ground with blood smeared on his face and saw around him in every direction he could see – heaps and heaps of dead bodies; darkling bodies. He remembered even then, “The Last Army survives.”

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The Legacy of Kalki Vol. 1 – The Last Army

The Last Army

Hello to all the readers of the great world of Science Fiction & Fantasy. I have a good news to share and I am (almost) sure you are going to like it as well.

When the current, fully edited draft of The Legacy of Kalki crossed the (holy) mammoth number of 500000 words, I decided to split it among a few volumes. The initial plan was to publish 3 volumes with each relating to 4 parts of Kalki’s soul. But now I plan on releasing 3 volumes with 3 parts of Kalki’s soul in each and 3 short novellas which would narrate the other 3 parts from a different person’s POV (Yet to be disclosed).

I am planning to bring in the novellas between the major volumes with a parallel timeline (A brilliant suggestion by one of my beta readers) & to give them away for free to whoever will buy the previous volume.

The Last Army

Coming to title of my first volume, I can give you all a sneak peek into the story.

The Mortal Realm has become a battlefield for the Gods & pawns of Chaos while the Earth crawls with horrendous creatures born of true evil. Mankind is on the verge of World War 3 and humans are simple “cannon fodder” for the superior powers busy in their war. Everyone awaits the good guys to make things right but they have vanished without a trace and everything seems lost…

Lost in the ashes,
In a world that dies,
From the depths of the blue,
The first of them rise.

Doomed to be dead,
Everyone of them thrives,
Facing annihilation,
The Last Army arrives.

Bhagatai (भगतई) – Rural Indian Sorcery

Sorcery

Sorcery is an art of souls, magic, devotion and power. You can find no distinct definition of the word ‘sorcerer’ which shall be accepted worldwide. But despite of the various ways of defining it, sorcery is generally considered a negative aspect of magic. You might know it to be the polar opposite of Wizardry or it might be a different word to define the same thing – magic for you.

What is a Sorcerer?

Do me a favor and close your eyes. (Actually… Close them after reading the whole thing, or how would you be able to read?   😉 ) Imagine that you visit a village in Bihar, India. The streets are deserted, the houses are quiet and a shrowd of stillness engulfs the village. You move forwards, hoping to meet someone but find not a single soul in sight. Then you catch a movement in your peripheral vision and jerk to look at it. You see a bright piece of clothing just beyond the corner and instinctively move forward to look at it. After a couple of steps you stagger to a stop. Finally you discover the people of the village. Every single one of them is there in the village square. You move towards them as you notice every single person present is rock-still, holding his/her breath. You look for a vantage point and perch on a bullock-cart. Now the whole scene lies before your eyes. The whole populace is surrounding the village suquare, where an old man sways squatted on a mat. He is engulfed by incense, & platters of food and delicacies are laid out before him.

Suddenly his swaying stops and the old man goes rigid. He stays frozen for a moment then turns abruptly – to stare you straight in your eyes. You go still, trying but unable to escape the old man’s gaze. Then the most freakish/amazing thing happens. The mans speaks your grandfather’s name. And says to you. “Welcome, grandson of ……….”

 

 

That my friends, is sorcery. Pure and absolute. The art still thrives in the rural areas of India like Bihar, Odisha & Jharkhand; and is widely renown. Basically the sorcerer invites a spirit to reside in his/her body for a period of time and enjoy material pleasure like food. The spirit grants the sorcerer knowledge in exchange of the few moments of enjoying life. The sorcerer meanwhile answers questions and solves people’s problem with the knowledge gifted by the spirit.

How does Sorcery work?

1) For a thing like sorcery to work, the first requirement is a crowd of people. The ‘spirit’ doesn’t visit the sorcerer (भगता – Bhagata in Hindi) unless there is a sufficient audience.

2) The sorcerer sits on ground with all the food & incense around him and closes his eyes to meditate. Then there comes a moment when he goes into a trance and starts to sway, shake & wobble. When the trance fades and the sorcerer opens his eyes, they become the eyes of the spirit.

3) After talking with such a sorcerer ‘Bhagata’ in person, I asked him the secret behind it. He smiled and replied that there wasn’t one. He just makes his mind & body ready to accept the spirit and the spirit arrives. According to him, it was like swimming with closed eyes. You swim and swim, and suddenly BAM! The opposite shore is there & the spirit is ready to ‘move in’.

4) The incense & crowded surroundings helps the sorcerer to ‘reach out’ and contact the spirit. When the spirit inhibits his body, the sorcerer only remembers a partial consciousness.

5) When the spirit has finally arrived, music is played in a steady rythm. The sorcerers claim it to help the spirit ‘attune’ to the alien body.

6) Sorcery is a talent of blood. It can’t be learned unless you are born with it.

What are the uses of Sorcery?

The most prominent use of sorcery is curing diseases. It may be noted that most incidents of sorcery are recorded in rural areas of incidents.

1) The act of Sorcery ‘Bhagatai’ is often celebrated as a minor festival. A ‘Bhagata’ is usually related to a particular cast and only they participate in the gatherings. They ask the spirit the solutions of their day to day problems, cures of diseases which they can’t afford to get treated by a doctor and such minor things.

2) A sorcerer is also a holy thing for the people and they seek blessings for family and friends. He is considered a thing of marvel since there are claims that the spirit which visits a sorcerer is the essence of their God.

3) The act of sorcery is also a thing of entertainment for the people. The sorcerer performs various tricks to entertain the people such as eating fire or holding embers.

4) Then there are negative aspects too. Some Sorcerers claim to cause harm to others for money. They call upon malignant spirits which can cause a subtle, gradual and substantial harm to a specific person of family. It appears as bad health, ill luck, accidents and other seemingly natural phenomena.

 

Sorcery – Real or Fraud?

Just like other supernatural activities, sorcery is also considered a trick of eyes or some detailed play or act. Our science doesn’t allow anything not natural to exist and hence sorcery is often under suspicion.

Real

1) Sorcerers perform acts like holding glowing pieces of coals, and it doesn’t harm them. I am not talking about momentarily holding and then throwing it but holding them for extended periods of time like half an hour.

2) There are many incidents where patients actually get better after being blessed by a Sorcerer. Whether it is purely psychological or the blessings really work, can’t be decided. It is a fact no one can ignore.

3) Sorcerers tend to know much more than their ‘inert’ forms. When a spirit inhibits them, they simply know the names of strangers come to see them, or ancestors of the people around them. This is a fact not to be taken lightly. Sorcerers aren’t vagabonds roaming around gathering information about patients. They are day to day farmers and labors who act as a vessel to the spirit.

The extraordinary knowledge gained by the Sorcerers cannot be ignored.

Fraud

1) Every single act of sorcery is recorded in only rural areas. 99% of the incidents occur in the poorest and most backward states of India, where only 10% of the population ever passes high schools. This points towards a huge question.

Why do spirits only inhibit illiterate & uneducated village folk?

2) The spirit refuses to arrive in the vessel if there are media personnel or any other official presence around.

3) Not a single Sorcerer is an educated person. Do you smell something fishy too?

 

 

Whether they are real or not. Sorcerers are a common thing in rural areas of India and Sorcery still lives in this age of Science.

See you later!!!

Hey guys! I have a lot of studies coming in the next three months. This means I wouldn’t be able to blog much.  A couple of posts per month will be all I will be able to do. I will be coming back full on from May 2016 and The Legacy of Kalki shall continue. […]

Books I read in 2015

2015 was a year with a LOT of work and also with a LOT of free time. I had my exams in May and was preparing for them since last August (2014). I had had only an hour daily for reading leisurely, and believe me, I utilised all of it. June, July & August (half) […]

Garbled Speech – Report Card for 2015 (Oct, Nov & Dec)

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 740 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 12 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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