Chapter 1.0: Taiyou-Shi, City of the Sun

Fala gazed at the sky above her and sighed.  In this world, the one constant and unchanging factor had been the sky above. No matter what the hour, it never changed.  Rain or snow, it remained pitch black, an eternal presence.  Since Amaterasu disappeared under mysterious circumstances a thousand years ago or so the story went, there had been no day.  It was comforting in a way, to have such an unchanging sky to count on. People went about their business in Kuro, keeping track of time in 24 hours.  Without the presence of sunlight, there was no point in dividing the day in half.  For people in Kuro, “Day” was a myth.  No one had seen “Day” in over 10 centuries.  But Kuro had found ways to deal with the absence of light.  They had developed technology to harness what was once there in full force.  Kurokyuu Orbs, little black globes that drew energy to them became the power source for much of Kuro.  Little is known about how they work, but they are able to draw upon the Goddess Essence, remnants of Amaterasu’s power on Kuro.  In over a thousand years, Amaterasu’s power remained plentiful on Kuro and the Goddess Essence powered everything from machinery, technology and home use.  Light Spires, found nearly everywhere on Kuro glowed throughout all 24 of Kuro’s hours and provided sunlight, a technological accomplishment.

Fala sat outside at this very moment, sitting atop a hill in Taiyou-Shi, the capital of the nation of Taiyou, named the “Sun Nation” for its technological achievement.  Of all the nations in Kuro, Taiyou alone had figured out a way to generate sunlight from the darkness, though Fala had always found it ironic that Taiyou-Shi, the so-called “City of the Sun” could not in itself completely dispell the darkness that pervaded Kuro.  No matter how advanced the technology got, they were no closer to “Day” than they were a thousand years ago.  Yet, the technology had found a way to make the Light Spires brighter and more efficient, their homes were well lit, and the average citizen had adequate exposure to sunlight.

There had been a disturbing trend of late however.  Due to increasing demand, mining expeditions to the north were being conducted to locate additional sources for the Goddess Essence.  The initial missions had revealed that the Goddess Essence was becoming difficult to find.  The mining probes set up by Diskarma Corporation, the conglomerate that held a monopoly on the Kurokyuu technology had been coming up empty. Diskarma had been spending, literally hemorrhaging funds in the last two years, trying to find more places to tap into.

There had been several theories put forth by the academics on the phenomenon they had been witnessing.  Solar energy had been peaking.  Was the Goddess Essence running out?  For the last five hundred years, the civilization in Kuro had come to rely on the Goddess Essence.  It had never been in short supply before.  What if the Goddess Essence in Kuro was finite?  That was a disturbing thought.  The nations of Kuro had been advancing at a rapid rate.  Assisted by the innovation provided by Diskarma Corporation, the nations of Kuro had industrialized and brought many improvements to its constituents.  Quality of life was at an all-time high except at the lowest levels, and satisfaction of the individual citizens was equally high..

All of this changes if the Goddess Essence dries up.  Already, there was mounting pressure from special interest groups.  A few of the academe, some of them members of the elite in Taiyou-Shi as well as other nations had spoken up.  There were several mathematical calculations, various theses put forward that had suggested that the Goddess Essence had to be finite.  The only way for the source to be renewed was for the source to be alive.  And they were well aware that the Goddess was no longer in Kuro.  Opponents of the theory argued that nature itself tended to find ways to renew itself.  That there were vast, untapped sources for the Goddess Essence that are just waiting to be found.

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