LitFest Tours No.5: Serenity

Please note: you do not need to use any of these ideas; feel free to write about anything in this region.

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Visit Serenity

They say there are one thousand steps to the top of Serenity, an ancient city, every nook and cranny carved to perfection, smooth curves, beautiful terraces, stunning waterfalls, latticed windows. Built by ageless hands so many moons ago, they also say that those who ascend to the top of the city will discover something more valuable than gold, the knowledge we’re not alone in our fights.

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Things to look at

The start of the many steps
Ever upward, but with candles of hope at every turn.
A beautiful setting at the top of the steps.
The plaque

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Things to think about

From the creators:
They say there are one thousand steps to the top of Serenity, an ancient city built by ageless hands so many moons ago. They also say that those who ascend to the top of the city will discover something more valuable than gold.

As many an adventurer over countless years I found myself at the gates to the city at the base of the mountain. The sun is setting, and the fresh sea breeze invigorates me. I smile, the city itself had been hand carved out of the mountain over what must be centuries. Every nook and cranny carved to perfection, smooth curves, latticed windows, ornate and beautiful.

I began my climb, step after stone step, worn smooth by the countless people before me. Around me the denizens of the city sell and barter, trading goods from all over the world.

On the wall of the terrace, carved into the rock is a shrine lit with candles, I approach it to investigate its significance. People trickle in and out, lighting unlit candles or placing their own. On closer inspection, I see names carved into the candles. A little girl sees my quizzical looks and simply states. “for those who have lost the fight, or who are fighting it now.” She places a lit candle and runs off before I can inquire further.

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I return to climbing the steps. In the distance I can see the uppermost terrace, and the courtyard of a wonderful palace. As I climb and the sun begins to set, I see more and more candles being lit, at the base of trees, and even set afloat down the waterfalls.

I finally reach the top terrace. The sea breeze is cool, having lost the heat of the sun. I walk towards the balcony I had seen atop the cliff. I find a plaque containing an inscription I can barely read.

    Here is a place of serenity,
The lights below flicker with love
for those who fight
and for those who have faded into night
Find here amenity
the lights flicker below and twinkle above.

I look out over the city, the lights, the candles in the shrines and on the river and it dawns on me. The treasure of Serenity isn’t gold or jewels or arcane magic. It’s knowledge. The knowledge that we’re not alone in our fights. I smile as I look out over the city. The flickering candles mirror the stars above. Whenever we’re alone, the stars hold vigil for us.

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