Opening Paragraphs from Two Unnamed Stories In-The-Works

Detail of Erasmus by Hans Holbein the Younger

From a portrait of Erasmus by Hans Holbein the Younger

From a fictionalization of a trip to Seoul a few weeks ago (first draft finished yesterday)—

No one knows the size of the city of Seoul. And it’s even said among some people that a man familiar with the Hangul alphabet once found a live electrical wire on the far side of the planet with the word Seoul (‘서울’) printed on its gray rubber. So this is proof that the roots of the city grip the whole surface of the Earth, and that if you want to go there, all you have to do is reach into the soil, dig around with your hand, find the inevitable wire, and tear it out—if you have the strength, you can whip it up all the way to the horizon, and follow the root until you get there.

From an autobiography of a Djinn (first draft unfinished (was interrupted by the trip to Seoul and the subsequent inspiration))—

You’ve raised me up, so I’ll speak to you.

I remember my birth and I remember waking from eternity, the feel of fingers weaving me from threads of fire. It’s the same as waking from any sleep. Something pieces you together. In the bright pit under the world I was an empty memory and a flesh of wind, though the blood in my veins was a seething flame, and my legs and arms and hands (all five of them, all ten thousand of them) flashed me back and forth as fast as thought. I was thought, I was fire with neither light nor smoke nor heat, more a force—a push, a shove in the market from nowhere—than a living being, a quiet inhabitant of the inferno.

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