The Lands of the Circled Plain, a… setting story? for #3ww

To Three-Word-Wednesday (Today’s words are Barren, Intense, Worry).

Set in the world of the Circled Plain, the same ‘verse as my webserial Jumping Rings.

The land of the Circled Plain was barren. Everyone knew that. It had been blasted, bombed, and then stripped of everything that remained by explosions of magic that came both during and after the Great War. It was dead. Everyone knew it.

The common knowledge had its flaws, of course. First of all, there were farmers who lived outside the city walls, planting seeds and growing food in the blasted land of the Circled Plain. True, they had things to worry about that a pre-War farmer might not: seeds might die, or grow backwards in time, or, sometimes, they might sprout something not entirely vegetal and often quite hungry. But they grew food in the barren lands of the Circled Plain.

Secondly, the walled cities that gave the plain its name – New Indapala, Red Sinachi, and so on – were, if you wanted to be nit-picky, actually on the plain’s land, especially as they grew outwards, ringed wall by ringed wall. And inside those walls, animals grazed and plants grew, planted seed by tedious seed in the barren lands.

Those were logical issues, however. The problem really lay in the third flaw: the places where people neither lived nor farmed.

There were miles and miles of land between cities, long stretches that took days to travel. And in those places, plant life and animal did not struggle, it didn’t wither and die. Rather, it grew. It grew wild, intense, and poisonous. It grew thick enough to destroy buildings and drink up watering holes. It grew over rivers and into lakes – and it grew hungry and, sometimes carnivorous.

It wasn’t that the land of the Circled Plain was barren. It was that it was so much more alive than the humans who moved through it.

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