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  • Madeline Walz

Origin (Otherworld 3.2)

Originally released as NaNoWriMo 2020 Day 24: Write a story that involves magic.

You think you know the world? You have no idea. There is another world that exists, hidden, alongside our own. Few know it exists. Now it is in danger, and that danger could affect the world you know. Are you ready?

I've been hinting at the events of book 4, Gateway, throughout the first three books of Otherworld, and in my interactive map project. Want to know more about what's coming? Check out this preview of Gateway!


I am writing this to leave a record of my actions, however they come out, so all may know the truth. All these years, I have been making plans, and they are finally coming to fruition. I have designed a safeguard, to ensure my work does not fall into the wrong hands. Along my path through Reau, I will leave parts of this message locked behind vaults that can only be opened by a certain person. The giver of gifts—that strange, gray-robed figure—will choose the person, and will form the vault and key to the abilities of the one they choose.

At the end of the path, in a cave outside the city, I will leave a key that can only be opened by all four together. If I must turn to Plan Aalephaz, that alone can end it once it is begun, if for some reason it must be ended. If I fail, the final key will not be needed. My life’s work will tear itself apart, leaving me stranded on the other side.

In ancient times, a portal was opened to what we believe is a parallel world, a less developed world. Though many believe it is useless and barbaric, my gifts have shown me what that world will become: a place of marvels far exceeding our own, despite its late start. They will explore the stars with great manned machines while we here stay on the ground forever, too caught up in worldly things to look to the heavens. I wish to bring this wondrous technology to Reau, but I cannot wait thousands of years for them to develop it naturally. I must go there and guide them more rapidly along that road to the stars. Tomorrow I arrive at the Causeway, where I will be let through or forever end the guardian’s monopoly on interdimensional travel.

The guardian would not let me through. Only she has the power to control that portal, otherwise I would take it from her. Instead, it’s time for Plan Aalephaz. I believe I have discovered the method of making portals in a forgotten room in the library of Tambron. I have deciphered the text in the next section and will begin the process outside Alessima tomorrow. The original book has been destroyed to keep the knowledge out of other hands.

My plans have leaked, somehow. It seems like half the city has gathered here to see my unknown “spectacle.” They do not know what will happen, only that something will, and that it will change the world. Or, rather, worlds.

I believe I have found a planet that can sustain life. While the guardian of the Causeway guards a portal to another version of the world, I will have a portal to an entirely new world. I will call it Otreau because it will be better than Reau, a world apart.


Cover image made by me with FontForge, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe Photoshop mockup from Nina Shaw on Behance.

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