My Wallaru Walkabout: There and Outback Again
October 6th, 2023
“I need some water.”
That was the first thing I said when I stepped into the Outback – an arid expanse that covers most of Wallaru.
My guides couldn’t help but laugh.
“Don’t we all, mate?” they said.
Water holds a special place in this world’s history and culture. But not just regular water, no, a variably colored substance they call “Dream Water.” Once Wallaru’s primary draw, Dream Water is said to be literally the substance of dreams and it can incept great ideas and ambitions. Dream Water has inspired the inventors of Marleybone, the artists of Valencia, and the ever-morose writers of the Walrusk Empire. It showed warmongers the value of peace and alchemists impossible new concoctions.
But to reach that water, to earn that insight, one must walk. And so I did. For miles and miles. Through heat and sand, through hours and exhaustion. I was bitten by at least three different poisonous things – one of which was a plant – but fortunately, my guides carried an array of antidotes.
And then – after ordeals, and sun, and weariness - we found it: an oasis in the desert, glimmering pink, with memories floating out like bubbles…
But then a jolt to the back of my head dispelled this vision, revealing only empty desert. It was all a mirage. It wasn’t Dream Water I found there, no – as my panicked guides told me: