Saturday, 3 May 2014

The Girl Who Never Was - Extra - Travelers

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Travelers


Faeries, much like wizards and witches, tend to carry particular talents through their genetic lines. The Seelies are nothing but genetically honed super-faeries, in effect, who happen to be unusually strong in naming power. Travelers are faeries who are especially good at the art of travel: they are never lost, possessing unerring senses of direction; they can get into and out of almost any room; and they have the unique ability to “jump” between physical spaces and between worlds, switching locations in the blink of an eye. Doors cannot be locked against them, and they can call for trains at will. Human folklore calls them “will o’ the wisps,” which humans understood to be luring them to their deaths. In reality, travelers are generally caught up in their own activities and seldom notice if they catch a human eye.

As the Seelies began to consolidate power, traveling became more valuable and, conversely, more dangerous to them. Travelers could spread word, quickly and easily, organizing rebellion and keeping others apprised of the Seelies’ movement. As a result, the Seelies began to hunt travelers in earnest. First they forbade the continuation of the line, and then, eventually, they imprisoned or named every traveler they could find. They left just one, for their own use, because the power of the travelers was too intense to eliminate altogether.

The immense talent of the travelers is balanced by immense weaknesses, which was why they never rose to the power of the Seelies. A traveler’s power can be disabled by the simple touch of a goblin, making them sworn enemies. Moreover, travelers are severely allergic to water, which dampens their abilities and can also weaken them to a point near death if they are kept too wet for too long. Finally, while travelers cannot be locked out of a room, they can be locked into one. The enchantment is a tricky one and requires much power but can be performed.

While traveling comes naturally to travelers, it is nevertheless exhausting, and they will often need rest after too much of it at once, especially if water is involved at any point. Some places are easier to travel to than others, and in times of great distress travelers will frequently focus on those. A traveler’s homeworld is always the simplest for him or her to return to. Cottingley is the easiest place for them to reach in the Thisworld. Even when the worlds were sealed into separation, the membrane between them has always been thinnest at Cottingley, making it the most ideal place to bridge the two. (Iceland is also heavy in faerie lore and also an easy place for a traveler to get to.)


Skylar Dorset

THE GIRL WHO NEVER WAS (June 3, from Sourcebooks)
(Pre-order on Amazon – Barnes & Noble – IndieBound)

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