Frontnote: This is supposed to have a slightly more interesting formatting, but FF.n doesn't have the right-align option, and I mistrust my success if I try to fight it. If you want to read "There Are Ghosts" as it's supposed to be, it's cross-posted on AO3 with the correct formatting. My penname over there is Sophia_the_Scribe, and the title of the work is the same.


There is a world:

Heroes and villains, science and magic, gods and giants and the clash of titans.
Good and evil, hard calls and harder repercussions, life and death and life again.

There is a city:

Darkness and danger and death.
The stench of alleys, fumes of despair, vapors of rot. Unpleasant.
No one likes it. Some exploit it, many endure it, a few even love it.
No one likes it.

(But love is a powerful thing.)

A bright voice and echo of laughter;
The scent of cigarettes, a flash of a hope-symbol;
A glimpse of a trailing cape, or the rustle and shadow of flight overhead;
A sharp silhouette of fear and protection.

There is a world, and there is a city:
And there are ghosts.


There is a world:

Legacies and bloodlines.
Light and darkness, knowledge and ignorance, freedom and slavery.
Planets and systems and far-off stars; republics and rebellions and tyrannies.

There is a temple:

Living and dying, learning and teaching, rising and falling. War and peace.
The guardians of a thousand generations; the history of ten thousand years.
The slow decay, the loss, the fear. A grieving remnant.
Children who once laughed among the fountains.

(And grief is a powerful thing.)

Echoes of patient voices and steady feet;
Shadows cast by the slanting light on the outlines of grave faces;
The crashing weapons and jesting taunts of warriors at play;
The serenity of peacekeepers;
Light that holds back the darkness.

There is a world, and there is a temple:
And there are ghosts.


There is a world:

Wise and foolish; wonderful and terrible; magic and mundane.
Hidden, yet obvious; separate, yet intersecting; alien, yet familiar.

There is a school:

Tall towers and crowded classrooms and shifting stairways.
History and houses, libraries and lore, fear and fantasies.
The best of memories, and the worst.
Love and loss and children sent off to war.

(Yet memory is a powerful thing.)

A shout of laughter, and two broomsticks amid the fireworks;
A whisper of movement: a flash of heel or hand as a cloak catches a corner;
A lonesome howl to the merciless moon;
A silver flash, a murmured promise;
And far in the distance, the echo of a phoenix's lament.

There is a world, and there is a school:
And there are ghosts.


There is a world:

Peace and progress and cultural exchange.
Strange peoples and stranger situations; epic battles and prosaic disturbances.
A concept: different views combining to make a stronger whole.

There is a ship:

Adventure and discovery and exploration; a dream lived.
Brothers-in-arms and families-of-choice.
Madness and bitterness and death; a hard duty.
Seeming contradictions, coexisting.

(For duty is a powerful thing.)

Voices just around the corner: a debate of ideology, painfully sincere.
A strange shimmer in the transporter: shadows of familiar features.
Engines that run beyond maximum power.
Through the static, half-heard words of command and inspiration.
In uncertain light, a handprint on glass: a dying salute.

There is a world, and there is a ship:
And there are ghosts.


There is a world:

Sheriffs and maidens and foresters, minstrels and huntsmen and monks.
Noble and petty; generous and miserly; rich and poor.

There is a forest:

Thievery, from the unjust hoarders.
Outlawry, when the lawmen are wrong.
Brotherhood, between men who rely on each other's wits or strength.
Laughter, because life is joy, and they live.
The King's deer, by the King's grace.

(Yes, joy is a powerful thing.)

Bowstrings twang, arrows hiss, quarterstaffs clatter;
A flutter of Lincoln-green, just discernible in the dappled light;
An echo on the wind of a gentle ballad, or a fervent prayer, or a raucous dance;
Inexplicable help to those in need.

There is a world, and there is a forest:
And there are ghosts.


A/N: The Jedi section was inspired by "when we all fall asleep" by llwydion and the Gotham section inspired by "Mercy Street" by TheResurrectionist, both on AO3.

Cheerio!