Saturday, 2 July 2016

Citizens of Chirica - Zaphtar

Lounging in a high, crooked tower of the city, its winding stair dizzying, its very stones creaking in the cold wind, is Zaphtar, the cold-eyed and cold-hearted sphinx, lion-bodied and hawk-winged, its face that of a beautiful woman but lined with a heavy beard. Zaphtar – not the only one of its kind in the city, but the most powerful – is courteous, wise, solemn, disinterested, apparently above the city's intrigues and interested in ending them where possible. In truth Zaphtar, far from sane, believes itself to be the agent of history in the city, and something close to a god: it manipulates and encourages with the aim of never allowing the city to come to rest, preventing any faction from dominating, intervening with savage earnest where it claims to see the course of time run wrong.