House of Cards


It was like a name from a children's tale: Amber.

Maybe it was nothing but a fairy tale. Maybe you thought it was the city at the end of the rainbow, a city of moonbeams and dreams.

Maybe it was the True Realm, the Eternal City. Maybe you thought it was your parents' heart and soul, that for it they would lie, cheat, steal and sacrifice each other -- and sometimes you.

Maybe you loved this place called Amber. Maybe you hated it. Maybe you wished your parents would forget the place ever existed, as unlikely as that seemed.

But Amber in some form was a constant in your life, its existence as firm a part of your foundation as your parents themselves.

Until the war, when you found out even Amber might fall down like a house of cards ...

If I shout, 'You are only a pack of cards!' I feel we will all fly into the air, a hand of painted pasteboards.

-- Corwin, The Courts of Chaos