Stories of Clockwork and Magic by Jelly & Blue
Official Guide to My World

Bard Cycle

There is much confusion around what the Era of the Bards would look like. Much of the confusion was designed by the Wanderlores, for if those involved really knew what bringing forth the Bards meant, they certainly would not have participated.

The Bards, it was believed, would have the power to re-script the Realm. Meaning, people believed it was within the Bards’ power to single-handedly correct whatever imbalances in power had accrued over time.

Of course, the various Houses of the Creators Realm all thought that if they were to have their own Bard within the fold that they would have an insurance policy against whatever re-alignment of power that was destined to come.

Now, I can understand how those in power really don’t like the idea of not having a say in whatever happens next. However, that’s not how the magic was set up to work.

The magic is meant to flow through cycles. It was divided into two aspects to allow this flow to take place. Neither aspect is good or bad. There is always an aspect of the magic in power, while another aspect of the magic remains untamed.

This wild magic—or phantom magic as it is sometimes called—circulates throughout the realm. Occasionally, it causes strange occurrences and phantom beings to be born, but, as a whole, it is basically not a threat to those in power.

That is, until the Era of the Bards arrives.

Those in power believe that the Bards will protect them when this phantom magic starts its ascent.

This is an illusion.

Though the Bards may appear to perform rituals to strengthen the Houses against the building tide of untamed magic, what we are actually doing is causing the untamed magic to strengthen even faster.

The piece that the Houses don’t realize is, ever since we were born, the Bards have been weakening the old magic—the magic in power. 

This fact isn’t even known by the Bards themselves until they are well along in their journeys.

If the Houses were to figure this out early, the Era of the Bards would no doubt end quickly.

Even the Wanderlores, who keep the rituals and the legends on which the realms are based, are unaware of how the Era of the Bards truly works. 

The Bards are disrupters. We break the old way of doing things.

What those in the Creators Realm are unprepared for is the ascent of the new magic and the enshrining of the new decorum this will ultimately bring.

The Bards are just as unprepared as everyone else, for we don’t have control over the new magic either. This is where those who have no power come in.

It is they—the created creatures, outsiders and denizens of the icon worlds—who are the only ones who can wield this new magic. It is they who will decide the new way and eventually set the new decorum.

How will the future look? I don’t know for sure. 

I live my life while trying to understand all of the options. I give guidance, I use my voice, I speak my hopes and fears.

I may not have the ability to use the phantom magic directly as others do, but this doesn’t mean I can’t inspire the way it will be utilized.

This too is a duty of the Bards. I hope that the others will follow me in this pursuit.

—Jellybean Reds, Creator of Little Creatures

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