Fix-up novel (and first of a projected series) derived from various stories, 199194, and, like most of Moorcock's fantasies (The Revenge of the Rose, 1991, etc.), set in the ``multiverse'' where almost anything can happen, sometime, and usually does. In this particular variant, called First Ether, black races now dominate. ``Color spots''--whirling, churning blobs of energy- -appeared and were tapped for energy, but a disastrous attempt to harness a huge spot off Biloxi, Mississippi, has resulted in the Biloxi Fault, a voracious maelstrom of fluxes that's destabilizing reality. In such uncertain conditions, only the ``jugadors,'' or master gamblers, prosper. Jack Karaquazian and Colinda Dovero are lovers until Colinda, obsessed with the idea of higher realities, dives into a color spot and vanishes. Later, Jack will join with his friend Sam Oakenhurst, and his beloved, the half-plant, half- animal Rose, to play the Game of Time. Interspersed with these gnomic goings-on are descriptions of the Chaos Engineers who, in peculiar vessels, navigate the Second Ether in voyages of exploration, and whose exploits are considered to be solely fictional . . . until Rose explains that the Game of Time is ``a story created by the Chaos Engineers and the Singularity but affecting all reality.'' Entering the Game, Jack hopes to find Colinda, while Rose and Sam have ambitions to remold reality itself. Familiar Moorcock preoccupations embellished in an elusive and calculating style. Readers unimpressed by recondite, non-narrative transmogrifications may well find it dreadfully pretentious and self-indulgent.