The first issue of our intermediate reader series Cosmos Incendens is almost ready! Let’s take a look at what is in store in this epic new Latin comic series:
THE COSMOS WAS MADE NEITHER BY
ANY OF THE GODS NOR HUMANKIND,
BUT HAS EXISTED FOREVER, AND IS,
AND WILL BE.
AN EVERLIVING FIRE: KINDLING IN
MEASURE AND GOING OUT IN
A young adult, on the threshold between childhood and adulthood, looks out towards the wide world with a sense of wonder. There is freedom out there, and adventure. This premise might sound familiar: it is the basis for many a hero’s journey. The hero of such a tale is eager to break the bonds set upon them by the world so that they might go forth and become the best version of themselves that they can be. But what exactly is this “best version”? Does the young adult truly know what is best for them, or what their final destination is or ought to be? Society might say “No.” As might the individual’s family and friends. Perhaps they are right: the hero of this tale might not know exactly where they are going, but wherever it is, and whoever they are meant to be is out there in the great unknown.
The desire for adventure grows, the opportunity strikes, and the hero is thrust into a new world, beyond the protected crib of childhood. They fly the nest and find a world more beautiful and more hostile than they ever could have imagined. But if they have the courage and will-power to persevere, they just might conquer this dangerous world and become who they were always meant to become: the true hero of their own tale, and perhaps even the hero of the world! This is the story at the heart of Cosmos Incendens.
It is the 2nd century CE, and Marcus Aurelius reigns. The Mediterranean has seen worse times. There’s still plenty of war, poverty, sickness, and turmoil, but things are just about as “stable” as they can get in the Roman Empire. At least, they seem to be.
For most, it is life as usual: hard work and toil, a constant struggle for survival. Rough, unsympathetic, but manageable. The Gods and Goddesses rule from their lofty thrones; divine spirits roam the wilderness and cities; restless souls haunt every necropolis; and humankind rides the currents of it all, a small part in the severe yet harmonious order of things. But something stirs—something ancient, something angry, something bent on disharmony, discord, chaos.
A new cult is forming around this ancient evil. They call themselves the Philerides—Lovers of Discord. Twisting and warping the words of Philosophers and Poets of old, the cults feign reason and piety, filling its ranks with eager devotees. The leader of this new religion is called the Magister Optimus Maximus, The Most High and Mighty Teacher, a supposed living embodiment of the goddess Discord. This Magister Optimus Maximus rules his disciples from the shadows, communing only with his highest generals, the Magistri, or Teachers. This growing cult spreads unseen through the Roman Empire, waiting for the right moment to raise its ugly head and put its terrifying plans into action: Unwinding the very fabric of Nature itself—a return to Chaos.
The Gods and Goddesses of Mount Olympus know of this growing evil, know of its plans to disrupt the natural harmony of things. They also know there is a way to prevent it from achieving its goal. There is a prophecy that speaks of a hero who will rise to destroy this evil. Cosmic salvation depends on this one individual: a young mortal, and right now he is bickering with his father about doing his school-work.
Lucius is our hero, a legendarily stubborn sixteen-year-old boy who wants nothing to do with the patrician’s lifestyle his father desperately wants to instill in him. Lucius, like his younger sister Secunda, is no stranger to trouble. Unlike his sister, however, Lucius lacks the savvy and charm to get away with it. When Lucius’s father refuses to initiate him into adulthood on his sixteenth birthday, a day every Roman boy expects to be initiated, Lucius decides to take a break from his school-work and run away for a day. Little does he know, he is being eagerly sought by forces both good and evil. Who will reach Lucius first? Will he accept his destiny as laid out by the prophecy? Will he save the Cosmos, or will discord succeed in unraveling the natural order?
Cosmos Incendens is a coming of age story, an adventure, a sprawling epic, set in the fantastic world of Ancient Rome. Readers will meet a diverse cast of characters, mortal and divine, as they travel all across the Ancient World. The story is inspired by classics such as the works of Homer and Vergil, as well as modern classics such as Star Wars, Harry Potter and The Wheel of Time series. Yet it also draws heavily from many ancient religious and philosophical texts. It is an exploration of the individual’s agency within him- or herself, in the home, in society, and in the grand, cosmic scheme of things. What is “Destiny”? Can we change it, or are we like the dog pulled along by the cart? How do our actions reverberate and affect the people and the world around us?
Whether you enjoy action, romance, tragedy or comedy; political intrigue, mystery, magic or fantasy; history, philosophy, archeology or art, Cosmos Incendens has something for you.
Stay tuned for updates on the release date of Cosmos Incendens #1!