my birthday gift

Tears and bones

According to the laws of the state, every family in Duc could keep one parangon of every ten they turned in. However, the laws also said that every registered family must hand in at least one parangon every season as the basic tax.

Dusti the mayor, tax collector and accountant of Duc, was a kind man most of the time. He did not push the miners too hard for their occasional tax debt. After all, mining of parangons depended not only on hard work and technique, but also on luck. A tardy luck was always tolerable. This kind attitude gave Lord Dusti love and respect from the Ducians throughout his long and peaceful term of service.

The parangons could not be taken out by force alone. A parangon was firm and solid and indestructible alone, but was fragile when it was still in the ore. Excessive force would break it into powder along with the shell.

All parangons were of the same size and shape, just as big as a cat’s eye. Its shape was a perfect dodecahedron, with 30 edges, 20 corners and 12 facets. Every facet was a perfect pentagon. It was said that an old savant in the northwest of the continent called Thaetus had said that there were exactly five regular polyhedrons in the world, and that the dodecahedron was the most special one. It was said that it was the shape of the world designed by the gods, containing information about the secret fifth element, and was the symbol and source of the mysterious powers.

The ordinary parangons were colorless and transparent. If you looked at it from different angles, you would find various pentagrams in all sizes and states. It was perfect, dazzling and charming. It told you how marvelous the world could be.

As far as Amon knew, there were four types of parangons other than the standard ones. Each type of them had a unique color: blue, red, white and black. According to a savant called Empedocles, they symbolized the four elements of the world: water, fire, air and earth.

Crazy’Ole had a crazy theory about the parangons. He said that they were originally the parts of the gods’ bones. When a god fell, his bones fell apart and crystallized. Thus the parangons should be called the Bone of the Gods. Amon found it hard to believe. He asked Crazy’Ole, how could the eternal gods ever fall?

♪ Earth 2077/Oblivion



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