"Technology has replaced God in the Western mind." John Clute, John Grant.
Whom will Gate help to win in the Last War?
The point. To tip the balance of forces, thus changing the political regime in a clustered society.
Villains/decision-makers. KADE warlords, Luminanime elitists, and neutral Avguri.
Fifth column. Pheairras - the smartest people in the book. They choose to be big shark in the cold dark rather than small fish in the warm pish. And keep residence in the good clusters while working for the bad one, in line with any regular yuppie dream.
Aloof and therefore assholeish balance-keepers: The Skydwellers and the Shadow Emperor.
1. The warlords are basically O.K. So what if they want to play the queen in order to tweak the fates to their own benefit? Everybody wants a place in the sun, let alone in a world where the sunlight waves are convertible to currency due to the Sol Vortex biotech and bionics.
What the blazes is Sol Vortex? The seven-suns astral-physical energy production system Gate invented. It is populated with conflicting social clusters, and she's kinda their Creatress. Bit of a chieftain figure, with all ensuing snafu, but she won't find out she's their creator - or, rather, creatress - until Chapter 5.
What the hell is that supposed to mean? The Vortex is objective reality in Devachan.
Smartypants alert. (Yes, just like you, I know the difference between Knowitallian and English.) Argument pro magical realism element: Devachan is a real thing. Or so H.P. Blavatsky has us believe. You can find Devachan on Wiki the Magically Real Free Encyclopedia, so the answer to #isthatathing is "yes".
In Sanskrit, Deva means "god" and chan means "dwelling". In a word, Devachan is virtual reality created by powers at various levels of cosmogony. Vladimir Vernadsky has a related concept, "noosphere", the mind sphere of Earth similar to biosphere or troposphere. Sigmund Freud would call it "yearning of Earth's superego". But Devachan sounds best.
What people think. Sy-fy nerds call it parallel reality. But Devachan is much more than a figment of sex-deprived imaginations, to which RealLife is no more than a server Error 404. Not to mention actual science, which, to the mass reader, is greater fantastics than Daenerys' bleedin' dragons.
Gate has her own name for it. "Dreamdwell". She also calls Sol Vortex simply "The Vortex", because she is musical, and to her ear, solvortex sounds like the name of a toilet-cleaning spray brand.
What's the book gotta do with it? In Devachan, all the stories of all the authors are tangible objective reality, from Eddur to Gospel to Atlas Shrugged to Grand Theft Auto. The only way to keep them real, should the author pass into posterity i.e. croak, is to have someone else think about it.
And? And Gate must write a bestselling "true story" of the Vortex, namely, 'The Skydwellers' Last Battle'. If she manages, that fragile balance of forces will remain stable for a while. If she won't manage to stay alive, either before or after other Human minds start feeding the story with their imaginations... well, that is a different tale. And if either side contracts another writer to do their bidding, then... that is yet another "true story".
Ana, for God's sake, lit agents are not famed for their patience. After Gatie started dating Rob, she is:
- - losing her mind and a couple of Choo stilettos in Prague
- - getting her leg bones crushed and forearm burned
- - risking to grill all her friends in a minivan barbecue
- - becoming very good at running
- - losing her mind again
- - getting infuriated
- - and - the worst! - turning professional writer
The Thickens Plotz on the way to culmination,
Links are a sort of manholes in the fabric of reality. Only they're not portals, like, bing-bang-boom, I'm in Star Trek, drinking lite beer on Enterprise with Mr. Spock! They are all located in deserted or mountainous areas where human presence is sparse, the risk of human-triggered disasters is low, and the air is unpolluted.
The Links, just like hyperlinks on the Internets, are access points to new information, not doorways to heaven.
What do they access? Links are entrances to and exits from a complex four-dimensional structure (3-D + time) similar to a massive honeycomb and called mosaic time structure covering Earth like yet another sphere. Links are cells with broken or breakable caps. People move through the structure pretty much like bees move through a honeycomb.
Earth knows it all about particular Link vicinities, like places of power Castaneda described... or, say, the Shambhala in Tibet, where Jesus allegedly spent His silent or lost years.
All this stays firmly in the much-ridiculed domain of the paranormal and the esoteric, which is not surprising in view of many failures to think outside the "a portal is a door" box... or to apply tech methods to non-tech ideas, for that matter.
All in all, there are seven Links connecting the Vortex to Earth, and numerous others, at which point let me mention
One important side effect.
All the doohickeys, bugaboos, whangdoodles from our favorite stories periodically sneak through Links to visit Earthlings,
a. -- inspiring myths, legends, and beliefs from Allah to Valhalla;
b. -- creating temporal mess, cause-and-consequence mess, just plain mess;
c. -- reincarnating as new humans if they're tired of Immortality, Inc.;
d. -- taking over the world - I mean cats;
e. -- making Freud giggle in Devachan: Stephenie sleeps - Edward slips. Nuff said.
f. -- making psychiatrists filthy rich - imagine an innocent curious Vree crawling through a Link into a schizoid insomniac's bedroom in Roswell, NM. Ka-Jung!
g. -- being pretty much the answer to inane questions like "what inspired you to invent Quidditch, Ms. Rowling?"
Also, if you want to travel hither and thither between Devachan and Earth, you better have a lot of experience navigating in the mosaic time structure like Rob. And make sure to be armed with the mathematical formulas his father, the living Keeper of the Links, invented for easier navigation... and disclosed to an Avgur at a drunken party.
Final steps to the apex.
Gatie dots the "i" as she lounges on an Aegean sea beach. She:
--> understands why Lenatireya hates fiction; -->
Trespass-2015: They win the war for Earth, Gatie dies, Rob returns home. In Epilogue, Gatie finds herself as a child in Naru-anarin.
Posterity-2017: Gatie finds her way to Rob in the Vortex. Rob is alerted because he is watching the Rings, and they suddenly start color-reacting. Epilogue: they get married.
Domination-2019: Rose returns to the Vortex and explains a part of how Gatie became the Creatress, but not everything. Gatie lives happily ever after at first, but then starts noticing the Vortex is far from being an utopia. She goes to KADE and embarks on the 13-SD mission. She is also researching medicine on Earth as she is a Vortexian now and can travel in the honeycomb time structure. Epilogue: Gatie finds out she is pregnant.
Rebirth-2021: Gatie works to save KADE. She embarks on social awareness mission to change the attitude towards KADE and looks for cure for the skin-scale disease. Rob is ambushed in Marill-anarin, so Rose and Lena go look for him. She negotiates with the SDs to return the KADE into the Vortex. Gatie also finds Ursi's family, but finds out Ursi ambushed Rob. She is punished and sent to Cluster 1. The SDs start working on returning KADE into the Sol Vortex. Ursi finally gets her revenge on Agata and Rob. They die and the work remains undone.
Series finale: Rob and Agata are reborn on Earth in 2015 as Maximilian and Maria Dani, who are the MCs of a new series, The Gods of K.A.D.E.
Archer is in fact Lythyrr Nolementar who, as his parents are trying to change the Vortex, finds the formulas of Galnairran, now old, and Sees himself living in a weird stone city with weird people. He sees himself with a lovely woman. So he falls through the mosaic structure to Paris 60 years back in time, meets Julie - love story - die when protecting Gate. Thus, he protected his own mother so that she could in several years give birth to him. Ouroboros. Describe energy fight in Paris side-street with Archer's eyes. Epilogue. Julie's death. Julie's POV as she dies. This time, it is she who played host. She took Archer with her to her own Christian heaven.