The Taint is something that the Horton family from Tirahnys has had for many long generations. Those who have the Taint are often referred to as "the Tainted", because of having the Taint of the Hortons. When talking about it, one should note that it, and "Tainted", are proper nouns and not common nouns. The current Horton family's daughter has the Taint, and marks the 125th generation of Hortons who have been Tainted. There has never been a male Horton born in the past two millennia who has been Tainted. However, in that time, all female Hortons have had the Taint. When married, the couple goes with the last name of the Tainted person, thus all who has had the Taint are Hortons. This Taint has been kept a secret until a Tainted's wedding day, but if their betrothed no longer wants to marry them, their memory of the Tainted are removed entirely to preserve the secrets related to the Taint.
On, or after, they turn 12, the Tainted lose their left eye - if it's open, there literally is no eye. Thus, they either keep their left eye closed, or cover it with an eyepatch or a bandage or something. On, or after, their twentieth birthday, the Tainted regain their left eye. This is usually a joyous occasion. The new left eye will be different in color, and the Tainted gain magical powers other Newerthians dream of. Both the loss and the regaining of their left eye take place ONLY when the Tainted are asleep. It appears that insomniacs will lose their insomnia permanently; V. Horton was an insomniac before her Taint began. Being poisoned will turn the left eye's color to the previous one, for as long as the Tainted remains poisoned.
Secret research indicates that a Tainted can have their powers awakened prematurely through a special item. However, this may often put a strain on their minds. They may go insane until they turn twenty as a result. Those who have their powers awakened in this manner will NOT regain their left eye prematurely. If there exists a special bond between the prematurely-awakened Tainted, and the giver of the special item the Tainted might not even go insane. These type of Tainted are the most dangerous to anger, for obvious reasons. That aside, it turns out that those who have the Taint tend to explode on death. This is most troubling news. This makes researching the Taint much harder. It is theorized that this is one of the Tainted's ways to protect their left eye, even if they do not have one. However, do they have control over it? That is the question for now.
Having traced their lineage through the magical powers of time wizards, I have uncovered interesting information. The Taint never originated inside this world's galaxy. In fact, it's not even Newerthian in origin! It appears to have originated from some place called the Realm of Crystal. I've never heard of it before, however. It could be that it's another galaxy… but too little information could be gathered. I believe this will be the final book for a while - I am headed to the capital to request permission to find this Realm of Crystal. If I succeed, I hope to write many books about it, and also where the Taint fits into it all. On 16 August 2010, sixteen days from now, I hope to have my answer.