Dragonlance: The Second Generation

Forward

A long time ago, a couple of doorknobs named Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman decided to leave their homes on Krynn and go out adventuring. I'm afraid there's some kender blood in those two. They just couldn't resist traipsing off to visit other new and exciting worlds.

But Weis and Hickman are like kender and bad pennies—they keep turning up. And so here they are again, all set to tell us about the wonderful things that are happening in Krynn.

Some of these stories we've heard before, but they have a couple of new ones, too, all about the children of that small band of adventurers who are now known as the Heroes of the Lance.

Many years have passed since the war. The Heroes' children are growing up, going off on adventures of their own, heading out into a world that, I'm sorry to say, still has plenty of danger and trouble left to go around.

Now, as you read these stories, you will notice that sometimes Weis and Hickman contradict certain other stories you may have heard. Some of you might find yourselves more vu than a little perplexed over their accounts of the Heroes' past lives—accounts that differ from other accounts.

There is a perfectly simple explanation.

Following the War of the Lance, Tanis and Caramon and Raistlin and all the rest of the Companions stopped being ordinary people and became Legends. We liked hearing about the Heroes' adventures so much, we didn't want the stories to end. We wanted to hear more. To fill the demand, bards and legendspinners came from all over Krynn to tell the wondrous tales. Some of these knew the Heroes well. Others simply repeated stories they'd heard told by a dwarf who had it from a kender who borrowed it from a knight who had an aunt who knew the Heroes…

You get the picture.

Some of these stories are absolutely, positively true. Others are probably almost absolutely, positively true, but not quite. Still others are what we refer to in polite society as "kender tales" stories that aren't true, but sure are a hoot to hear!

And so you ask: Fizban, Great and Powerful Wizard, which stories are which?

And I, Fizban, Great and Powerful Wizard, answer: As long as you enjoyed the stories, you doorknob, what does it matter?

Well, well. Glad we got that settled.

Now, go pack your pouches. Pocket your hankies. Grab your hoopak. We have a lot of adventuring to do. Come along! Forget your cares! Travel with Weis and Hickman through Krynn once again, if only for a little while. They won't be here long, but they do plan to come back.

(Maybe next time, they'll return my hat!)

What was my name again?

Oh, yes.

I remain, yours sincerely,

Fizban the Fabulous

I

At the edge of the world

the juggler wanders,

sightless and pathless,

trusting the venerable

breadth of his juggler's hands.

He wanders the edge

of a long-ago story,

juggling moons,

parading the fixed

anonymous stars in his passage.

Something like instinct

and something like agate

hard and transparent

in the depths of his reflexes

channels the objects

to life in the air:

stilettos and bottles,

wooden pins and ornaments

the seen and the unseen—all reassemble

translated to light and dexterity.

It is this version of light we steer by:

constellations of memory

and a chemistry born

in the blood's alembic,

where motive and metaphor

and the impulse of night

are annealed by the morning

into our countenance,

into the whorls of our

surfacing fingers.

Something in each of us

yearns for this balance,

for the vanished chemistries

that temper the steel.

The best of all jugglery

lies in the truces

that shape our intention

out of knives, out of filament

out of half-empty bottles

and mirrors and chemistries,

and from the forgotten

ore of the night.

Kitiara's Son

Chapter One

The Strange Request Of A Blue Dragon Rider

It was autumn on Ansalon, autumn in