July 31st Writing Prompt: Strain

When they reach maturity, the members of a tribe are meant to enter a nearby ancient temple, where the lingering effects of magic are said to flow into the young believer. Write about a character who is making this journey, and what happens when they do.

Ideas and questions:

Perhaps it really is a situation where the aether exists in concentrated form somewhere within the temple. But if it isn’t, perhaps there is someone or something within who passes judgment on those who enter.
The temple could be a simple presentation, or it could be endlessly complex, requiring multiple members to split up and forge their own path forward—not unlike the path of life.

How often are the people who enter the temple imbued with powers? Is it a rare occurrence, or fairly commonplace, and what would the reaction be for the rest of the tribe, whichever direction the story leads the main character?
For the purposes of your story, does one person go into the temple, or do many, with the group considered mature at a certain part of the year that they turn a certain age, for instance?
If the concept is that entering the temple bestows gifts upon some or all who make the journey, what is it that gives them that power? Is it a permanent alteration to the person or people with these powers, or is it temporary. Further, if it is temporary, what is stopping people from going back to get that power again?


Write your story from the perspective of someone who the tribe has already determined will or will not be bestowed powers. What do they feel like knowing that others have already attempted to predict their fate, and how does their experience in the temple compare to those predictions?

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