The segment posted below is the introduction I have used and will use for my short stories set in the world of the Sojourners in Shadow tales. This is our world, but in the future, after bizarre upheavals, so this intro is a summary of events and changes, to help the reader gain some small grasp of what kind of place they are entering. It had to be concise so as not to slow down, if not get in the way of, reading the story itself. It is there to set the scene, I guess, with each story filling in more and more details, as the world is shown through various viewpoints, in various places. It will remain for every story, just in case a reminder is needed, or for anyone new.
So here it is:
In a time no one knows when, a man, Dylan Winter, cast the world into hell. Sick of the human race and its bickering, unable to stomach any more of its shallow, pointless existence, he chose to teach mankind a lesson. He opened the door to the Shadow World, the dimension on the edge of reality, where nightmares lurked and the monsters of myth were inspired from. He was the first to die and millions followed. The world became infested, terror was widespread, and the human race responded. Badly.
Most monsters could be killed with ordinary weapons, but people struggled to face them and some wielded terrible power. Magic and mayhem was engulfing humanity so it turned to science, creating improved men and women to overcome the horrors. However, not all went as planned as those made superior eventually turned on their creators, as did the robots and cyborgs then developed. These were what destroyed civilisation – the monsters only sought terror, the mutants and machines sought conquest.
Cities were overrun by super-soldiers, populations were decimated by relentless droids and creatures from the Shadow World gleefully flitted through the fray. The three races also fought each other and this saved humanity from annihilation. But, well over two centuries since Dylan Winter acted in hate, his people are scattered and the world is transformed. So is much else. Some monsters have lost their evil lusts and mutant breeds push on in their altered evolution. Things keep changing, even as the old sins remain the same. However, members of all the races – humans, monsters, mutants and machines – strive to overcome this hostile existence via whatever paths they find before them.