The Aether Glass

Work in Progress

The Aether Glass, part 1 of a three-book series The Circle World.

In a medieval society at the earth's pole, two brothers pursue proof that the world is round.

The young men are of the nation of Apioch, the dominant 'flat earth' civilization at the globe's pole, a world that is alternately six months Awake and six Asleep. Sen, a student of a new Enlightenment, while pursuing proof of a heliocentric world must outsmart the Jenam zealots who suppress all heretical revelations. Meanwhile his restless brother Fas becomes obsessed with discovering the other pole and its denizens, unaware that they, the sfaurars, are already among them — until they carry him off when his quixotic expedition meets disaster.

Sen smuggles the first telescope through four nations, dodging monks whose entrenched creeds demand its destruction, and the king who covets its use in war. Sen's prejudices are dismantled as he encounters new societies of his world; and he must ultimately sacrifice his own freedom to save his friend, leading to a young girl slave who unlocks the secret of the sfaurars.

Landscapes of The Circle World:

Trail to Mt. Apio Long Sea View Leaving Gedyptin The Nadus Jenam Coast Trail to Yexa


Porchun Asctemien stood at the rear of the boat, his black hair arcing in the breeze, and he stared at the receding vista of Gyampana. Above the city a band of cloud hung like a scaffold, and to the left in the distance Mt. Gur rose impassively like a faded painting of itself. He heard the lap of the waves on every side of the boat; and the ruffling of the sail all along its edge; and he heard the wind around the taught lines that whistled and breathed; and a gull sing that it was hungry; and the creaks of the ship clamored for his attention. He heard the symphony of hissing water as a hundred undulating waves touched the hull. He heard the breathing of every man, every cough and smack of the throat, every step laid, every grip placed or released. All of these sounds, no matter how small, showered upon his consciousness like seeing all the stars at once emerging from a Night sky. He stretched his hands over his ears and breathed deeply the salty fresh air until he felt calm. Then he turned away and found his friend at the prow of the boat, gazing toward the horizon.
"Are you sure your brother will be able to find his way by himself?"
"He's an Esmenne. We are invincible." It was cheering to feel their steady riding on the waves. The green-blue water swept under their feet like the way time moves when a dreamer is sleeping. "Do you remember when we donned my father's armor?" said Fas.
Asctemien smiled. "It took the two of us together to lift it on. I remember."
"You were the back, and I was the front. We strapped ourselves in and paraded around the house, like some sort of two-headed, four-legged warrior beast."
"Until your mother came in the room and scolded us to leave it be."
"Yes, but she was proud, I could tell," said Fas. "This is like that time."