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Pantheon - The Third Age - Story and Writings Thread
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Bel
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"I am the Great Lord.
"I am the God clothed in mortal flesh, He Who Brings Peace. I am He, yet I am less than He. You shall revere me as you do Him, but you shall know me in this form by a different name: Parganis - in the language of the Prophet's people, the Undisturbed.
"Some of you here know the face that I now bear, the form that houses my avatar. That man is here no longer. He has opened himself to me, and now he is become part of one far greater than himself.
"I am the Great Lord. I am Peace. I have come, and I will protect you and lead you to enlightenment."
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2008 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Arcurus stared at the man opposite him. His city was less than a year old and he had to forsake it?

“I know you do not like the news my lord, but according to this report, its the only choice we have.”

The governor looked down at the parchment in front of him. Yes, the report. It was written in the language of the western Enstorm people. None of it made sense.

“It’s that part there, Lord Arcurus.” His adviser Pointius pointed to a section of the report.


…dolay iden yoksul nitelik yapılış, ya da belki yol yan hakemi etc. gelişigüzel bir biçimde , o bkz. be -in mezar önem adl. şu sen ayrılmak Sa'Deva hemen , önce belgili tanımlık kaçınılmaz olmak. belgili tanımlık yeni mezar -en Largros -ecek kısa bir süre içinde var olmak tam için sen çok taşımak….

Arcurus placed the report down again.

“Im sorry gentlemen but this makes little sense to me. However, who am I to doubt he great minds of the scholars of The Stile? Give the command, all citizens of Sa’Deva are to immediately pack anything of value and use. We are to completely strip the city bare of supplies. In four weeks, we all leave on a great pilgrimage.”

The assorted men around the room bowed low, before setting out to complete their task. One remained however, standing tall in his bright gleaming armour.

“You aren’t happy with the report Bennelius?” The old general chuckled.

“Of course not Arcurus! And neither are you! You forget, I helped raise you from a babe to a man. I know full well when you are doing a deed you don’t enjoy, but feel is right, like forsaking that false god. Duty. That’s been your failing since the day you first drew breath. What a good legionnaire you are!”


General Bennelius placed his high crested helmet on the table, before sitting on it himself.

“But you are right. Those mad fools in the libraries of the Enstorm desert know their stuff. We should not argue.” His finger jabbed at a name on the report. “This new place shall make a good home. I’m sure those crazed idiots know more than us about this place. We shall be good soldiers and move on.” He patted Arcurus on the shoulder. “Come, its time for us to work.”
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The Scourging Of Vedax

The council of Induna’s, ministers, head-men or officers, sat in a large semi-circle below the tree in the centre of kwaBuluwayo’s sacred precinct. It was here, beneath the same tree under which the Prophet-King had slaughtered his first enemy, and assumed his mantle, that audience was held.

The King sat on the rolled ox-hides and piled cushions that served as his throne, and with his councillors, listened carefully to the latest word from Vedax, as the messenger concluded.

Nkosi, it is as was said before. Since the Kind One appeared in Vedax six months ago, the citizens have lost all their fire, all aggression. They do not attend rituals, they do not answer the calls to arms. Your commands to allow them the last season to recuperate have been followed, but they refuse to return to their rightful duty unless forced. Altars to Bel and to Zephyr have been found, and flowers are strewn in the Temple of uKulwa.

An angry murmur arose from the councillors, and the runner looked apprehensive for a moment, for all he knew the King did not condone holding a mere messenger responsible for the bad news he carried.

The Prophet-King himself looked more pensive than angry. He shook his head as if in regret, but spoke with all the ring of iron command they expected from their leader.

”For six months now the people of Vedax have disobeyed my will. At first, knowing that an external agency had been at work, I tolerated their laxity and hoped the fell influence would fade. This it has not done.

”And now reports reach me that some of the citizens are turning to other gods? It is enough. I have tolerated this disobedience for too long already. Hear now my will.”

The King rose to his full height, and raised his ikxwa to the heavens.

”Dumisani,” he indicated the newly promoted general of the just formed 3rd Impi. You will take your regiments, the uYisitha and the Iqhawe Entathakusa, to Vedax where, with the blessing of our God, you will scourge the city of all the weak and disobedient who challenge the will of uKulwa.

Any who obey and join you are to be welcomed, but any who refuse are to be put to the spear. Those who worship other deities may accept exile if they prefer it to execution, and the altars torn down. But by the end of this season, no living soul in the city must oppose His will.”

Dumisani, whose name meant ‘Praise be [to God],’ bowed low in acknowledgement. Obedience was the first law of uKulwa, and all who dwelt on the Plains of Opal knew it, and knew the penalty for forgetting it.

uKulwa was a harsh master, and his prophet a strict enforcer of his will, but all knew it was for the good of the faithful. A city full of people refusing their duty to King and Church could not continue to thrive on the bounty provided by those whose word they scorned. Dumisani knew that to tolerate disobedience merely made it more likely that more would follow in time.

“Your will Nkosi,” he intoned. “The 3rd Impi shall prune the diseased branch from the spreading thorn-tree that is our people, and renewed, they shall flourish once more.”

Siyabonga Dumisani. I shall pray to uKulwa to empower you. Raze the city and build in it’s place Majuba, The Hill of Doves.

“Go now, and do your duty for your God.”

And thus Dumisani gathered his Impi, and the two thousand warriors set out on the two day run to Vedax, to scourge the city and wash their spears in the blood of the faithless.

Morning dawned bright, and the General stood alone on the crest of the ridge overlooking the city that stretched peacefully beneath the first rays of the sun, as its citizens rose for the new day. Some, once soldiers of uKulwa, saw him silhouetted against the skyline, spear and shield in hand, and pointed, calling out to their companions.

Even as more people tumbled from their homes in response to the mounting cries, Dumisani swept forward his hands, as though throwing handfuls of maize down toward the city, and the slope of the ridge turned black, as the Impi rolled down its flanks in an unstoppable tide.

--From the Oral History of Khumbula, the Rememberer

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Loam…
Vine…
Silence.


Or, to Estiä and Shanib, the sounds of the forest of Ilathi at first struck them as silence.

As they wandered ever deeper into the forest’s depths, they became more attuned to the sound of life within. The trickle of a brook just beyond a rise. The humming of dragonflies darting between the trunks. Even the faintest rustling of a bush, as creatures of Ilathi attempted to conceal themselves from the intruders.

“milady,” Shanib said. “The forest is quiet and at peace with itself. We have come from the seas and trouble and are headed towards trouble in Zendra. Do we really wish to disturb the tranquility here?”

Estiä continued serenely along the path. “Ilathi has offered welcome to us from the start, and will shelter us as it can as we make our way northwest. We must still use all of our own skill to remain as hidden as we can from those who would do us harm. But we mean no harm to the forest, and it will accept whatever befalls us as we pass through as just another day in its long and ancient history.”

Shanib accepted the words of the mông ruâd and they continued onward towards the northwest. Several days passed similarly as they came closer to the far edge until suddenly, the lighting of the path diminished. Leaves rustled and branches drew in. The tranquil atmosphere was gone, replaced by an aura of defense, as if the forest itself felt it was under attack. Faintly, ever so faintly, Shanib and Estiä felt the shuddering of the ground under foot and hoof. It was far away, and held no threat towards the forest, yet the forest reacted instinctively to the harm it perceived.

Three more times a similar event occurred before they reached the northwestern edge of Ilathi. Each time the shuddering was fainter, as if further away. Yet the forest knew. It felt and reacted.

Thus the Centaur and Human were even more hesitant and cautious as they made their way on to the plains between Ilathi and Zendra. Even at that distance, the dust from the crumbled city filled the air. Shanib turned mournful eyes upon his ruler.

“What now, milady?”

“We make our way towards the devastation, avoiding as best we can those we were warned about by the seamen on the journey back to Imray,” Estiä replied, settling her bow within more accessible reach across her back. “We will search for survivors and offer care to those we happen upon. We will seek out the biênôr and The Dragon. And we will go on from there.”

Slowly, as silently as they could, the mông ruâd of the Centaurs of Southern Imray and her escort made their way towards the devastation that they had formerly called home.
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PostPosted: Fri May 09, 2008 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the Second Age, a forest died to fuel an army. In the Third Age, a forest will be born.
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2008 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The sky did not darken ominously, nor was there a fetid and foul wind to herald the great mutation. Instead, the sky was clear and a deep blue. The sun shone down upon Nyitha warmly. The ground heaved across the entire continent, shuddering as though it were a mighty beast dying as untold numbers of larvae writhed and feasted on the flesh within . . . . the skin undulating and quivering. Moments later, all movement ceased. Holes in the ground opened up, like suppurating wounds or glistening birth canals, and from these sweet-smelling pits trees of flesh were vomited into the warm sunlight. At the end of each root, was a lamprey mouth that gnawed on the earth. Their bark was toughened skin, coloured blue or green-grey, and their leaves were translucent folds of skin revealing a webwork of rich-red veins underneath. Amniotic sacs clustered at the end of each branch, each nurturing worms coiled around pulsing organs. Some sacs swelled quickly before releasing immature Yekiths that slithered along the flesh-branches and climbed down to the forest floor below.
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2008 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The Founding of uLundi

It came to pass in time that, as the ranks of the Impi’s swelled, and seeing the need and capacity for a new command, Ulwazi the Prophet-King joined the surplus regiments into a 4th Impi, the smallest active, with only 3,000 warriors in 3 regiments. These were the uBusuku Obumnyama, or Dark Night, the Indlela Cinga, or Pathfinders, and the Mpanbonyoni, the Confusers of Birds.

And to command this new force, Ulwazi promoted a leading induna, Bongani, whose name meant “Give Thanks,” as the General of this new Impi.

Siyabonga Nkosi,” intoned Bongani, thanking his lord as the Prophet-King bestowed this great honour upon him. “Your will shall be my command. Speak but once and know that it is as done.”

“Bongani,” answered the Prophet-King, “I order you on an urgent task for the good of our people. Take your impi across the Shylan Desert, to the Mountains of the Dragon at the border to Northern Imray. There, I order you to occupy the main pass and fortify it with a great stone keep, like none other our people have ever built. And the keep shall be known as uLundi, the High Place. To this end, I shall pray to our Lord to empower you. Garrison the fortress, and bar all passage into the Shylan from the north.”

“Your will Nkosi,” replied the new General, hurrying away to make preparations.

Dawn found the 4th Impi already on the march, their trail-song rising from the swiftly moving column while the banners of the Red God waved in their wake. At the van ran the General, surrounded by his personal bodyguard of Igazi Isiphuzi, the Blood Drunkards, Warriors of God. It was their task to guard him from any harm, to carry out his orders without hesitation. And to kill him should he fail his God or his King. As an honour, it was a double-headed spear, to be wielded gingerly lest it slip and impale the user as well as his target.

They camped early that night, on the verge of the Shylan, to prepare for a punishing run the next night. Induna’s urged their men to drink their fill all through the night, for Bongani would waste no time on the march. The logistics of moving 3,000 men across the Shylan may have appeared formidable, but the famed endurance of the Impi’s would be their salvation. Rather than stop half-way and camp again, Bongani intended to push straight through, and make the desperate crossing in a single 48-hour forced march, pushing the Impi to its limits.

And so, well rested, and with all the water they and the u-dibi could carry, just after the next sunset, they headed at the run into the desert.

More than forty hours later, the survivors jogged into the cool foothills of the Mountains of the Dragon, collapsed at a small watering hole, where after drinking it dry, they slept for the next day.

Casualties amounting to more than a full company had been sustained, those warriors unable to keep pace. But the Impi had crossed the mighty Shylan at the run, faster than any would have believed possible, and now they stood ready to carry out their orders on the other side.

Bongani took his regiments immediately up into the main pass, the only feasible route for an invasion through the mountains, and there, labour began on uLundi, the High Place.

With stone quarried from the very bones of the earth, the Impi threw up a defensive fortress the likes of which had never been seen on the plains. Any group of size, any trade caravan, any company or entourage, all must pass through uLundi, which filled the pass, or be denied the South or North, once the layered walls at last reared above the pass. Wall followed by killing ground, followed by wall, and killing ground again, in a repetitive pattern that could break even the mightiest armies.

The two thousand warriors of the first two regiments garrisoned the fortress city, taking turns at short patrols, training, and manning the walls. The third regiment, the Pathfinders, were set to patrolling the lesser ways, the goat-trails, the foot-paths, the scree-covered slopes that slipped here and there through the peaks. Now no man or beast could cross the Mountains of the Dragon, but that Bongani, and through him, Ulwazi, knew of, and permitted it.

And so it was that the Mountains of the Dragon were closed to all unauthorised travellers at Ulwazi’s order, and the South of Imray sealed off from the North.

--From the Oral History of Khumbula, the Rememberer

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2008 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Sweeping the Plains of Opal

The First Impi, four thousand warriors strong, set out at the double from the military kraals near the former site of kwaBuluwayo, where workers were already rebuilding the city. Led by the General Mdlaka and the iMbube,or Lion, regiment, they swept across the Plains of Opal in perfect formation.

One entire regiment, the isiHlangu or Shield regiment, peeled off to the south, reforming into Companies on the run and heading toward the Ilathi forest. The remaining three regiments spread out into search formations and, running a wide zigzag pattern designed to cover the greatest possible area, headed north by north-west on the start of a search and intercept exercise that would eventually leave all of southern Imray covered in their footprints.

Nothing that lived on the Plains of Opal would escape their notice.

To the south, the isiHlangu drew up on the verge of the Ilathi. If anything saw them coming, it fled before them, for they had encountered no prey. Now they prepared to enter the forest, always an occasion for caution.

They performed the ritual propriations. Fires were extinguished, torches discarded, promises made. Then squad by squad the isiHlangu warriors filed into the forest to continue their search, fading from sunlight into shadows as they slipped silently between the ranks of trees.

--From the Reminiscence of Mbopo
.
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2008 12:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Twisted and bloated trees of flesh were pulsing whilst purple and red lights flashed sickly deep within their cores. The limb-like branches were curling inwards like great, gnarled fingers clawing at the warm and humid air of the flesh forest. High above the forest a heavy black and red storm shuddered as thousands of veins of lightning played through it. At times, a vast, elongated black worm could be seen swimming through the clouds. Only, when it began to rain did the trees stop their writhing. The branches drooped to the ground as sacs grew from the flesh-wood - fetuses wrapped in a gelatinous and veinous caul, the fruit of Nor Yekith.

Headless slaves waited below, their arms outstretched to the lowering branches as the glistening womb fruits were delivered to them.
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sweat soaked Barlo’s back as took the key from its hiding place and turned to the secret doorway. His hand was trembling so badly that he had to take a step back. His ultimate discovery (and yet the cause of his ultimate shame!), lay beyond the concealed, trapped portal. His vision swam. It was no good, he was too on edge to disable those intricate traps. Returning the key, he drew a dark cloak around his fevered frame and left. He tried to walk confidently, a normal man about his normal business, but he knew that everyone was watching him, that everyone he passed knew where he was going, what he would be doing, that this ‘normal’ craftsman was actually a hideous deviant.

At last, his destination! This was the worst part. He knocked the correct code on the innocuous door and breathed a sigh of relief as, when it swung open, the door inside to the left opened as it should, to shield him from view as he hurried down the stairs to her basement. He wondered which mistress it would be today. The Nouka, with the wonderful dichotomy of her kitten-soft fur and razorsharp claws? The Yekith, infinitely more intimate yet completely alien? Although they all fed his addiction, Barlo prayed it would be the Ssathiss. She didn’t have to play the role of mistress, she WAS the mistress, and her absolute disregard for his desires made their encounters so much more special.

.....

‘Brid know your fears, Barlo, and Brid knows your deepest desires. Better than you do, in fact! See?’ and she reached out to the plant beside her, gently drawing her hand along the stem to the flower, caressing the stamen, gathering pollen on her fingertips.

.....

She reached out, those pollen-covered fingers closing over Barlo’s head. More pain-pleasure wracked him as he felt the pollen, the proof that she had violated his darling creation, and as she let him know that his Mistress would forever be there in his mind, to control him as he so desired to be controlled.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 21, 2008 7:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Highest Stormlord closes his eyes, and retreats to the dark world beyond the senses of mortal beings....
Darkness, deeper than pitch and utterly silent, surrounds him. Only crackles of lightning, occasionally sparking off of his misty body, existed in this inner world. He could feel the tendrils of Mist and Smoke, close to the edge of his existence. If only he could control it, he would become powerful beyond imagination. He reaches out, gently, gently.
Terror! Pain! He is no longer alone. Though he cannot see it, he knows he has been noticed. The Father of these lands has seen his attempt to break in, to steal power. And he is not pleased. The Cloud Warrior slowly removes himself from that Misty realm, and returns his sight to the world below him.

It is time for plans to come to fruition. This world will soon be his.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 3:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The room buzzed with chatter as the assembled dignitaries and ambassadors from around Eiran exchanged small talk. Over 50 guests and their associated staff were in the small hall awaiting an address from the office of State Affairs in The Stile. It was a good chance for many to discuss things with others from across the globe, to get the feel of the many different cultures and races of the world. In this room you had Darrows rubbing shoulders with Centaurs and Humans. Nearly every race of Eiran was there on request of Grand Marshal Nevistal himself.

Silence boomed across the room as the Legionnaires guarding them cracked the buts of their spears into the tiled floor at attention. Moments later Nevistal entered, looking pale and drawn. The last few years were taking their toll on him and his eyes were even appearing grey and lifeless. He was flanked by two figures in grey hooded robes, shadowy with no features in view. Behind them, noticed by very few in the room, stood another figure, but this one in a black robe, staying back and apparently just observing. Some whispered about him, some just stared in amazement, wondering if this was the Scholar all had heard of.

"Nobles and Dignitaries of Eiran." Nevistals voice boomed across the room. "My gratitude for your answering my call for audience. As you know we of West Enstorm have had a trying few years and we are glad to see the world still listens to our voice.

However, my words today are not words of joy. Today we are gathered here so that I may address you all, and through you your people, about our current stance towards those around us.

As many of you are no doubt aware, in the recent weeks we have faced attacks from many of your fellow god worshippers. Zealots of peace bring war to our people. Fanatics claiming to be lonely outcasts march in armies upon our people. Creatures created by foul necromantic sciences even curse our streets. And for what? For denying the existence of gods? For seeking a more enlightened way forward? Or for simply being different?

It is due to these such attacks that we have been working hard. We have raised one of the mightiest armies known to intelligent life. Legions formed of the soldiers trained in the science of battle, equipped with the greatest technological marvels of warfare, lead by Scholars of war and its workings. As much as it saddens me to say it, this is what we have had to resort to in order to maintain our own security. And maintain it we shall!

And so it is today, under the protection of these armies, that we declare the godless state of Inritus! The cities of The Stile, Khes, Olvir, Enlightenment and Mezar-en Largros and their immediate surrounds are all apart of this glorious state. The Stile, for all intents and purposes, shall be the capital of these lands

I want it to be under no uncertain terms that Eiran is aware that if any enemy of the State of Inritus steps even within sight of our lands, we shall do our utmost to defend our people. Our people, followers of Science and its ways, have been plagued with attack since their birth. Inritus is our safeguard, our bastion of hope, against the persecution of our people.

Now peoples of Eiran, do not take this wrongly, we do not wish to bring war to this world. We do not wish for destruction and death. We just simply wish to live in peace, to be aloud to do as we wish, grow as we wish.

What this is is a message; a message to the lords of Eiran and its many worshipped religions, that the State of Inritus will not stand by and allow its people to be persecuted any longer. For every life of one of my people taken by an enemy of Inritus, two shall be taken in return. Inritus, with the help of its great allies, shall ensure the safety of its people.

So, go back to your people, let them know of our state, let them know that if any amongst them too believe in science over religion then they have a safe haven among us. And let your people know that they have nothing to fear from us as long as we are left to our own ways.

And finally, we allow 3 moons for those of you inflicting attacks upon our people, intentional or not, to end these transgressions, or measures of our defence will be taken. We also offer safe passage for any god worshipping citizens amongst our people to leave our state and head to safer lands. After 3 moons are up, we shall be readjusting our lands and moving people to where they are most suited. Followers of gods will find themselves placed wherever we put them, as much for their own safety as ours. However we do wish to keep diplomatic channels open with you all.

We wish all of you and your people long and prosperous lives, and all the best in your endeavours. That is all."


And with that, Nevistal and his entourage left the room to a roar of unanswered questions from the invited guests. Cries of outrage and anger filled the room. It took a long time for these to die off, as the guests filtered out of the hall over the coming hours, till just the legionaries of the Order of Distant Stars, Standing rigid at silent attention, were all that was left.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 12:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stonemaster Among and Stonemeister Bonifateous listened to the boom of Nevistals voice. They had spent many years within the wondrous libraries of this city and were glad to hear that they would not be barred from the endless information of The Style. The Intellectuals (the two Nhruuk's names for the robed ones of The Style), were generous with their information and inquisitive of new data. They had spent years pouring over the data that the Nhruuk gathered about the geology of Eiran and Among and Bonifateous had enjoyed many discussions, debates, and lectures with the Intellectuals over the subject.

Walking out of the enclosure with the rest of crowd, Among spoke quietly to Bonifateous, "I hope they succeed. I truly hope they do."

With a sidward nod, Bonifateous replied with a soft laugh, "They don't have centaurs trampling all over thier lands, claiming it for their own."

"The gods will decide if Nevistal and his people will live in peace. If one of the gods takes a dislike to them, or thinks that they have specific authorities ..." Among began.

"...like O-gon-cho has with Imray...." Bonifateous added.

"...yes, like O-gon-cho," Among seconded, "then he will be sorely displeased and war will be commonplace in Eiran."

Bonifateous shook his head slightly in disappointed thought. "I wish them luck, Among. I do wish them luck."

They walked out into the light and the streets of The Style.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At the top of the grand temple of Seawind, on the island of Zevente, Etsiä, mông ruâd of the Herds of southeastern Imray, gazed longingly upon the distant shores of Imray on the western horizon. The sounds of new songs full of wistful desire for home rose on the winds of the extinct volcano to whisper in her ears.

One day we will step out from these shadows of the islands to reclaim the lands of the herds in full Light. One day


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2009 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Entry in Zephyr's journals. Immediately following his Ascension...

Quote:
The Interdiction ends! Eiran has deities again, and I am among them! I haven't met any of them yet. Well, aside from Calais, of course. But I am aware of them, as they are aware of me.

But my elation is tempered by the lessons of the past. I hope we do a damned sight better than the last two pantheons did. While reading the histories that I've had access to, and listening to stories from my grandfather, I've learned the true problem with Eiran's first two pantheons. It's a matter of attitude. Not an attitude held by all members of those pantheons, I suppose. But enough that it harmed all of Eiran's inhabitants. The problem is that they didn't give a damn about their followers. Oh, sure, they cared about the number of followers they had. But if any number were lost, the only important thing was finding an equal number of replacements, then finding more. Who cared that children were killed? Who cared that families were torn into bloody shreds? Who cared if a city, or even an entire culture, was wiped out? "As long as I keep the same amount of power, what does it matter?"

And if they cared nothing for their own followers, what of the followers of other deities?!? Of course, they could not have cared less. Who would expect otherwise? Who would expect a deity to care for another's followers is the deity's attitude toward his/her own was "acceptable losses"?

I think deities owe something to the worshipers who are actually the source of our power. We should justify the trust they put in us. Do we think they worship us so that we can take them for granted? Obviously not. They worship us in the hope that we will help them thrive. "Well, I can always get more" is a far cry from helping them thrive. It's a far cry from "Thanks for giving me all this power."

And on a practical note, what would a deity's followers do if they learned the deity wasn't concerned with their safety, as long as replacements could be found? If it was me, I'd surely find a new god to worship.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 30, 2009 11:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tireela walked down the darkening road. A cool breeze blew through her hair. She sighed, sated by the Life she had consumed from the zealot who had been causing problems for the Lord of Life. As she traveled she heard a caw. She looked and saw a back bird following her, a slight shimmer of white on its feathers. The bird seem to stare at her and follow her progress. It angered her for some reason she could not clearly articulate to herself. "A minor effort to teach this creature a lesson!", she thought.

Concentration. This bird's Life force was hers! But as she stretched her power to it: resistance! More resistance than she thought possible. She focused more; sweat broke on her brow. She reached out to her lord, Devaguhya. "Lend me your power!" Divine support flowed into her; power and protection. A barrier breaks! And the bird's Life power flows into her! Sweeter than she has tasted before!! An exhaustion fills her body as she collapses in satisfaction on the side of the road. "How was it so full of Life?", Tireela thinks to herself. Far beneath the sweetness and satisfaction, a slight bitterness is tasted. And something in the air is changed.

The sentinel raven falls dead from the sky.
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Undauthar sat upon the pavilion erected by his soldiers and gazed upon the scene. The sea in the near distance, the light of the setting sun showing in sharp relief against the darkening eastern sky the masts of the proud dromonds which conveyed the army. In the other direction, the city lay, it’s gates shut and low walls seemingly unoccupied. However, within the cries of the living within could be faintly heard. Those cries, which could chill the spirit of a living army, had no effect on his army, the army of the undead. To him though, he still remembers the chill those cries bring, but long ago he became immune to them even though he alone among his host is among the living.

In a sense, it was fire being brought in to fight fire. The foe within was pitiless, but that brought no fear to his army. It mattered not. To the living, the coming fight would be the thing of nightmares, and to those still living whom the foe hasn’t caught it would be. Oddly enough though, when the battle begins it will sound like no battle familiar to the living, with great hue and cry among those striving with sword and shield. Only the noise of the clash of arms will break the silence. Certainly no drama worthy of a song. Any who manage to live through it will not want to do that. That he will be successful, Undauthar had no doubt. Those within will be brought to serve the Lord of the Bridge.

“A message, daiymo of Unzen, from the daiymo of Unzen and shogun.”, a messenger tonelessly stated.....


Quote:
Marzon had finished questioning the courier from the new daiymo. Interestingly, Undauthar, who lives, seems more like one of the undead than Varmor, who is one, if the reports are to be believed, he thought.

“In any case, there is not time to ponder this, Varmor is better aware than I am of that and there is much else that needs to be brought to Varmor’s attention at the next meeting.”, Marzon said to himself, looking at the pile of papers on his desk.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The child strolled along the beautiful streets of Pelendra; the sun was shining on the sparkling spires of the city's towers, and the streets were sparsely crowded with Pelendra's citizens, colorfully attired so that the streets resembled rainbows. The city flew over Eiran constantly, the child knew this - its revolutions fixed and unchangeable, even by the Council of the Wise. And yet, despite this, the city flourished: it traded with the cities it passed close to, and the Wise had skillfully managed Pelendra's wealth, ensuring that no citizen needed anything. It was truly a utopian place, and though its citizens had heard about the coming of new gods onto the world below, and indeed they had even been visited by a winged representative of one of these deities, they remained by and large blissfully unreceptive to suggestions of conversion. The child, himself, did not really know why people worried so much about asking things to this deity-person or to that deity-person - he personally thought that if one wanted something, it was up to him or her to work hard in order to earn it. It was no wonder that, judging from the rumors the child had heard in the last months, the world below was already on the brink of disaster, barely two years after the return of the gods.

Why, just a few weeks before, when it had been his turn to teach the children, Orichal - one of the Council of the Wise, and a beloved one at that - had said, "do not listen to what others would have you believe, children... gods are flawed, like all other beings. If they were not, would there be so much strife in the world below? And if they are flawed, why then should you ask them for help? Instead, rely on yourselves, children, at all times... rely on your judgment, trust in yourselves, and there is nothing you cannot achieve." Orichal had sighed, then, but the child had understood what he had meant.

Much of the ancient lore from the so-called "Second Age" had been preserved in Pelendra; and all the children - at least the inquisitive ones - had heard about the legendary "sentinel ravens" who looked over the world, and witnessed events of great importance. Ravens were indeed common in Pelendra, traveling with the city, and legend held that most of Pelendra's ravens were in fact sentinel ravens - a reason why Pelendrans treated these birds with respect. But now...

The ravens were gone. All of them, overnight. Not even one remained, and none had seen them fly away, during the day or at night. And the Council of the Wise had had no answers. The child didn't know why, but he was uneasy. He felt as if something big was coming, and he was afraid. He wondered what was going on in the world below...
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2009 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

“So it is decided”, said Varmor to the group seated around the table. “Zamos, you are to prepare the way.”

Zamos nodded slightly.

“Arthanis, you and your mages will be busy this season. Keep me updated as to your progress on your assignments.”

“It shall be done”, was the response.

“Good. Now lets get to work.”
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2009 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Varmor and Marzon stood atop the Great East Tower, gazing out upon the sea. The sea was disturbed that day, with white caps as far as the eyes could see. Yet amongst that turbulence could be seen a great flotilla, the ships of the fishermen of Ermnyth, plying their trade. Motioning to the small ships at sea put Varmor in a reflective mood.

“When I was living and young, on occasion while herding the cattle we would come within the sight of the sea. The sight of the boats of the fishermen, with the sails catching the full breeze of the ocean, filled me with awe. The brightly colored sails threatened to carry me away from the my existence as a cowherd. Imagine that, an orc as a fisherman.”

With that Varmor smiled and continued,

“One day, I met a captain of one of those boats. The captain and her crew were unloading their full hold of fish upon the dock. She answered my questions. Telling me tales of watching the waves and the sky for signs of opportunity and of danger while in search of fish. She spoke with the voice of experience.”

“So the gist of this is that you trust the word of the fishermen?”, Marzon said quietly.

“Yes, I do.” Varmor said, returning his gaze to muse upon the sea.
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