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Concerning Politics and Prophecies

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I hesitate to call the following of the White Prophet a religion because it is so very different from all other religions I have known. It is said, in that belief, that time moves in a great circle. The successes and mistakes of one generation are repeated by the next, and the balance of rights and wrongs in one cycle will determine the starting point for the next. If new evils and wrong-doings are added, then time will spiral progressively further into a future of darkness, suffering, and evil. On the other hand, every new good deed and unselfish act that is done for the betterment of the world will tip the balance in the opposite way, nudging time into a better path. So, rather than events being controlled by one powerful being, it is the belief of followers of the White Prophet that every action of every individual has the power to shape the future.

Some individuals have more potential to influence the future than others, however, by virtue of their decisions being made in the right time and place to alter a key moment in time. Naturally, one thinks of kings and warlords, but such a person could arise from any walk of life. A mother may take her son to market one day and allow him to sit and watch a group of minstrels. That boy may be inspired to take up the trade himself and, years later, sing a song that will move another man to propose to his sweetheart. Their child may become the soldier that rises to command and leads a company of men into a battle that changes the tide of a war. Or not, if the mother decides to visit a family friend instead. It is the duty of the White Prophet to seek out one whose decisions lie at junctures and crossroads in time and to influence those decisions so that time will be steered down a better path.

Such a one is called the Catalyst, and that is what I was to the White Prophet of my time.

And to the other White who also claimed to be Prophet.

Both sought to use my life to shape the future, and they both had different visions for what that future should be. Their dreams and prophecies had one thing in common, and they both agreed that the survival or not of dragons was the major divergence that could be used to shift the wheel of time into a better path. So it was that prince Dutiful was given the quest to slay the dragon Icefyre, buried in the ancient ice of Aslevjal island, and so it was that I was sent to help him as a member of the Queen's guard. I could either aid him in completing his quest, or I could sabotage the mission and free the dragon from the ice.

The Fool once advised me that in the Pale Woman's future, there was no Farseer heir. That in the world that she envisioned, I had never been born. Failing that, I did not survive. The Pale Woman assured me otherwise, saying that the time where my death would have been useful had passed and that now she would not only make me a king, she would also give me a son.

I was skeptical at the time, of both of their words. The Fool's despair and certainty that there were no good endings left to her fueled my denial. I did not want to believe any of it, and so I did not. Only now, when I look back on all of the events that unfurled, do I see that I was wrong. Now my apologies are too little, too late and they are whispered to an empty room and carried off into the night. Could I have done anything differently to prevent the death and the blood shed? It is useless to wonder such things now.