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by Mike Jordan

Part Seven
Part Seven


The Culmination
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ISSUE PAGES (click a page, any page, to start reading)




THE PARVERIAN TALES Vol. 1 No. 7  2005 is published by BIG RED A PRESS, 18 Arnold Dr. Lisbon , Me. 04250 of which, Michael S. Jordan is the sole owner and operator.  The main contents of this book are 2000 of which "The Culmination" is 1994 by Mike Jordan; and "Maldren's Tale" is 1998 by Mike Jordan.  Any similarities between any of the characters in this publication and any person, living or dead, is purely coincidental-and keep in mind we use only the finest coincidences, 100% pure.

Maldren's Tale
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    he "Historia Parveriae" (that's Latin for "History of Parveria", sports fans, as if you didn't know) didn't exactly "grow in the telling", but it was something akin (I love that word) to that.  The original premise was simply to be a filler for the main story, using one of the unfleshed events mentioned in "The Culmination" (and, boy, are there a lot of them), nothing more.  I'd toyed with many ideas, including a look back at Cabal Rote's first appearance on Earth and his subsequent tussle with the Hero Eternal, but I realized all too quickly that such a plot would have, in its first installment, given away the fact that old gray, mean and nasty was, in fact, the Dragon (I warned you before that stuff like this would be revealed candidly in this section from now on).  Finally, I settled upon the notion of telling the story of Eric's parents as seen through his guardian's eyes, and so, "Maldren's Tale" was born.  As I outlined the major plot and created a rough time-line, it began to dawn on me just how much ground I could cover with the background information and sub-plots (from here and through the next few sentences, please hum "Thus Spake Zarathustra").  From the sleepy little village of Westmoor, I could cover the war, the royal family, and offer keen insight into most of the characters in the main story.   I could offer a vast backdrop for the whole blamed country of Parveria and still tell a separate story.  I would, in fact, create (Duhn-Duhn!) a prequel!  And tie both sides together in a neat, intertwined package.  I would be fabulous!  All I had to do was write and draw it.
    I'd love to say that "Maldren's Tale" scripted like pulling teeth, because strife is always so much more amusing, but it wouldn't be the truth (and Heaven knows, I would never knowingly mislead my faithful fans).  In less time than it took to draft the sequel (more on that, next issue, cross my heart), Blammo!, I had a still steaming pile of nearly two hundred hand written pages sitting on my desk, all eight parts, and it was a cake walk.  Well, maybe not that easy.  There were a few minor difficulties, like the creation of an entirely new cast of characters, maintaining the light-hearted atmosphere around a decidedly darker plot, and (probably the worst) the delicate development of Erichoth from the happy-go-lucky teenager to the life haggard hero/farmer; but all in all, it certainly wasn't what one might call bad.
    The drawing, on the other hand, was a little more challenging.  To fully illustrate this, I need to introduce you to two prominent parts of my creative psyche.  Let's call them Mr. Writer and Mr. Artist (say hello, boys).  These fellows have a relationship in my head much like older and younger brothers (I'd say "siblings" but I'm not as familiar how two girls or a girl and a boy react to each other), in as much as Mr. Writer seems to do everything in his power to make Mr. Artist's life all the more difficult. You see, it wasn't bad enough that the new script, which Mr. Writer had just finished, required the production of all new characters and settings.  Oh no.  Mr. Artist is used to that sort of trepidation, but Mr. Writer, this time, felt compelled to span about thirty-five years or more during the course, so that, in almost every ensuing issue, these people and places age and change (and sometimes blow up and burn down). The settings really weren't that difficult, even with the insane amount of research Mr. Artist usually incorporates into his drawings (believe it or not, the Aerie is a real building, and each of the half-dozen odd views of the Duke's stately manor has been a different reference house).  No, the real trouble was in adding a few years here and a few years there to the cast in a big-nose style; I assure you, Mr. Artist lost hair over that one.  However, he did overcome the stumbling block in a rather ingenious (ha! I did all this persona crap just so I could pat myself on the back here and not sound like an egotistical jerk) way, by imitating real life.  When real people age, their facial features and body structure usually broaden, and their noses and ears, as a rule of thumb, get bigger; so that's what he did.  In the end, after all the intentional hardships, Mr. Artist survived, but I'm pretty certain that he's taken out a contract on Mr. Writer's fingers (or at least his keyboard).
    To kind of wrap things up, I'd like to state, for the record, that I haven't been intentionally slighting the "Historia Parveriae" in this section of the magazine over the past six issues.  It simply is not the main focus of the book, and, therefore, was not the main focus here.  I hope this rectifies (I love that word, too) any qualms or difficulties any of the readers have been experiencing concerning this point.  A whole installment has now officially been dedicated (albeit in hideous generalities and simplifications) to "Maldren's Tale".  Now, would you all please stop the letters, the accusations, and the death threats, and would someone, please, be kind enough to unlock the cellar door.

So until next time,               

Mike Jordan                       
Lisbon, ME.