Astral Arcana - Prologue
The brilliant sun had set over Boston two hours ago, cloaking the night sky with a dark purple that reflected the light of the aetherial space beyond the Terran sphere. The royal palace at the center of the city, surrounded by gardens, had lit its lamps and cast a yellow glow on the plaza that had centuries before been home to a great and monstrous resonating chamber of a city hall; down the hill to the east, overlooking the waterfront, the thaumaturgically-calibrated clock of the ancient Custom House Tower struck eight. Across the mouth of the Charles River to the north, the Ainsley family of Charlestown was sitting down for after-dinner tea. Far above, amid the bright stars and the orbiting metropolis of the Terran Light spaceport, a great dark threat sprung from an unknowable distance spread its tendrils wide, its eye fixed on this shining seat of the pan-galactic Empire of Earth.
In the apartment on Adams Street in Charleston, Ciaran Ainsley was adding lemon and sugar to a cup of g