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Army Fluff The third dawn (Lost and Found)

Discussion in 'Fluff and Stories' started by Rikard, Jun 14, 2015.

?

Which should be next in the fluff?

  1. The mountains of stars.

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  2. The polar gate of ending.

    3 vote(s)
    30.0%
  3. The Sentinels.

    3 vote(s)
    30.0%
  4. The World pond. (Giant spawning pool in central plaza)

    2 vote(s)
    20.0%
  1. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    You're welcome. :smuggrin:
    Though why stop there? The skull helm mentioned above is different from Chakax's, so crack open a pack of green stuff my friend, because you'll need it!

    *runs away*
     
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  2. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    Well in tried and true style here's some filler...
    Well not just filler, all of these similar chunks do have a relevance.

    EDIT: spell checker is down, will proof read this asap and sort typos out.

    "There is no foul in my decision, I am not the voice of rebellious descent, nor an upstart threatening civil war, a council that agrees unanimously are either simpletons incapable of independant thought, or worse have fallen prey to their own emotions and have given in to fear and desperation. Though my clarity of thought pales in comparisson with Lord Kroak, I cannot shake my doubts of the council's course of action, we spare ourselves the axe in favour of the slow poison. We cannot heal this world, there is precious little of the magick that once flowed and to break the wards that were so costly to place would annihilate what little we have left. To place faith, hope and desperation in the Old One's return is less than a fool's hope, but it is the only one we have left; do not entreat me with such suspicion, I am and will remain plagued with doubt until I am proven wrong, for cold truth brings more peace than hopeful desperation."

    -
    Lord Huinitenuchli, Slann of the second spawning.


    Historian's note:
    It would appear that the council refered to is the "Council of first", although eight or perhaps as many as twelve of the second generation Slann survived the great catastrophy, the council was established so that only the eldest, wisest and most promenant Slann of each city would act as it's representative and only Slann of the second generation or higher were permitted to such meetings.

    I should also take this opportunity to apologize to you my lord of the "crudeness" of the translations, basic Lustrian is easy enough to transcribe into our comparative tongue, but the language used by these Slann exists far outside that of our own (and though they'd never admit it, far beyond the capability of Elves too). The language used is much like their grasp of the winds of magic, a natural affinity is only the begining of such a divide, thousands of years (indeed, tens of thousands in many instances) of use and tutorage from these "Old Ones" have taken them into a league that we cannot hope to match. Linguistically speaking our tongues do not have the comparative range or skill to even attempt direct corrilations; as such I would like to request that when your lordship reviews speech from these Slann and Old Ones (indeed my lord, I have found direct instructions from their masters!), you do not mistake these beings in any form of comparative, or similarity based light. Their minds are like the great Oceans, impossible to glipse their depths and dangerous to try.

    I would also like to take this time to personally and whole heartedly thank you my lord, or such wonderful, perhaps even rare pieces of work, at present I have transcribed a mere five plaques, but the site of an entire chamber's worth of such items floods my heart with a cocktail of emotions that neither words, nor the time taken to say them would allow. I can never thank you enough for this opportunity, the variety and rarity of such works eclipse those I translated for the great Museum and archives. I will give you a much more thorough assessment of these works and indeed, of your Ancestor, for I do indeed speculate that he not only journey to that mysterious continent long before the other races claimed to, but that he may even have been invited, or perhaps called. We have only glimpsed the beginings of the power commanded by these Slann, so it is plausable that they may have contacted and even guided him across the perilous seas to Lustria and even seen him safely home again, but to what ends, alas, I cannot say.

    I shall endevour to provide more information on the various sites, structures and indeed the Pantheon or Old Ones. I have already found much (though it requires my undivided attention to translate accurately) and so have formulated a brief index for you to peruse.
    • Spawning pools
    • Temple of Sotek
    • Barriors
    • Polar gates
    • Gateways
    • The great catastrophe

    Hlx-liopic covered his eyes in fear, as if denying the site of such a symbol would some how remove it altogether, whilst around him other skink priests and artisans squawked in fear, either throwing themselves to the floor and muttering words of supplication to the Old Ones, or running this way and that. He stayed as he was for a good long moment or two, before gingerly peering through the slits in his fingers, the mark was still there, but he was un-touched, not blasted with vengeful magick, nor hacked apart by blades of stalwart temple guard. He cocked his head slightly, ignoring the panic that still surrounded him as he strained to listen to the noises of the jungle and echoes that flew into the great chamber from outside; no tramp of marching scaley feet, no scream, roars or howls, there was in fact nothing.

    He looked down at the symbol again, still ignoring the hisses of fear and shrieked commands of the more senior priests to find Tehenhauin and seek advice on the next course of action, indeed, not one of them payed him any attention as they fled from the chamber in desperation. He was now left alone, good, that meant he could think clearly as he began to ponder questions that would have been severely punished in the past, but that was another time, another world and a completely different set of circumstances, much had changed since those days. He knew that the speaking of the name was forbiden but had no idea why, only that when he first emerged from the sacred waters he already knew of the word and it's stigma. He was relatively young for a skink and already felt like he didn't belong, spawned in a tiny, hidden spawning pool underneath the city of Itza, a vibrant golden crest marked him out for a single purpose, one he had failed in. Though he was accepted without question and the priests and artisans already trying to find a new use for him, he was a poor scout, a dreadful artisan and utterly without talent as a magic user, but perhaps here in this new world there might be something he could do, something he could activate, or even open?

    He stopped trying to think and allowed instinct to take over as he methodically felt around the symbol for a switch, or arcane lever, there was a dull "click" and uncomfortable pause and then a terrible rumble... he practically lept back from the device as a pillar of brilliant azure light burst from the dias and struck the ceiling. Cautiously he approached, fear rapidly giving way to wonder as the intensity of the light faded to a point where it was possible to see through it, though the majesty of it did not diminish with it's luminescence. He gazed in wonder even as the light flickered slightly when suddenly the stones in the center of the plinth vibrated angrily for a moment or two, before leaping into the air, each forming a small, floating spiral stair that went up, even unto the ceiling of the great chamber. Hlx-liopic gasped in surprised and then something strange happened, wonder and surprise turned to fear, he had no inclination as to why, but he couldn't shake it, he turned un-easily to glance over his shoulder towards the far corners of the great chamber, but could see nothing. He glanced back at the light and then he saw his fears manifest...

    It appear as if from nowhere, the light intensifying once again, then returning to their previous dim glow and in the space there stood a massive Saurus, bedecked in the garb of an eternity warden, only the bones used were much more jagged, more numerous and far more imposing. He shrieked in terror, backing away from this nightmare and stumbled over a pack left by one of the artisans, but he could not rise, all he could do was stare back, terror petrifying his limbs into inaction as his breathes came in frantic rasps; it was not the size nor the macabre nature of the monster that stood before him which terrified him, but the eyes that shone back, unrelenting, uncompromising and full of dread.



    Tec-olptl went from prone to vertical with a single terrified squawk, groping for a blow pipe that wasn't there, whilst feverishly looking this way and that. He was no longer in the jungle, this place was very different from any he had been permitted to see before; he shrieked a second time, realizing that what he had mistaken for a statue was actually a very large temple guard, covered in the dust of years. He spun round to see a second one on the opposite side, then down to realize he had been lying on natural berth on a very large, very long set of stairs. Gingerly he approached the nearest temple guard, was it dead? A hero honoured with partial mummification for giving it's life to save a master, he crept closer; the eye lids rolled apart with patient ease to reveal a fierce yellow eye staring down at him with cold indifference. He jumped back with another shriek, but didn't react further when he noticed neither of them moved, recovering slightly he crept to the edge of the stairs and glimpsed down, there were many like this, a wide berth breaking up the uniformity of the stair every thirty or so steps and at each one a similarly dust covered temple guard on either side stood inplacably, patiently, covered in the dust of centuries.

    Where was he? This was unlike any other pyramid he had seen before and something seemed off about the stars above, he squinted slightly, taking a long step to the left, then two to the right, but not taking his gaze off them. They weren't real, each one a tiny gem cut with expert precision and affixed on a set location in order to resemble the night's sky, he was INSIDE a temple pyramid and a collosal one at that.

    "You are awake"
    It wasn't a question so much as an uninterested observation, Tec-olptl recovered quickly, turning to face his master and throwing himself to the floor.

    "Get up" came the emotionless response, cutting off any pleas or apologies before he had a chance to utter them.

    Tec-olptl looked up at Ulotp’al wondering what punishment the old Slann was about to meet out against him, but the Mage lord said nothing, he was not followed by any attendants who would speak for him either, even his throne attendent was abscent.

    "Follow" said the Mage lord wearily,
    Tec-olptl couldn't decide whether this was because of a punishment his master would now be forced to hand out, or if Tec-olptl's actions now made him privy to a secret the Mage priest would rather remain hidden, either way he doubted anything he might say or do would improve his immediate future and allowed his doubts to be heard.

    "Oh revered one, where are we going?" he asked, as they climbed (or in the case of the Slann, floated)
    "Up" said Ulotp’al, fixing the skink with a irritated look, it was clear information would be difficult to gather, or perhaps he wasn't asking the right questions.
    "What is my fate?"
    The Slann allowed himself a smile (an un-nerving thing to witness even without the current situation) "That depends on you" said Ulotp'al unhelpfully.
    "Please lord..."
    Ulotp’al glanced back at the little chameleon skink and what looked close to pity, perhaps even sympathy washed over the old Slann,
    "You disobeyed my orders, after so many years of unquestioned service, you chose to disobey!" the old Slann stopped himself, aware he was dangerously close to allowing emotion to influence his words.
    "We are not here to punish..." he said at length "you have seen that which is forbidden, as have I, you are to be tested... one greater than I, wishes to speak with you" Ulotp’al's face was a mask once again.

    "A test?" asked Tec-olptl suspiciously, "What kind of a test?"
    "If I told you, then it wouldn't be a test" answered Ulotp'al unhelpfully, grinning secretively this time.

    Tec-olptl didn't allow fear to take hold and remained silent for several long minutes as they continued to ascend the stairs. Shortly they came to an immense set of golden doors, some fifty feet height and every inch of it beautifully inscribed with flowing glyphs and scenes spread out over a titanic map of Lustria and all the continents beyond (albeit very different from what the old world current looked like, perhaps a plan set down by the Old Ones). With a low rumble they began to swing open, golden light spilling forth to greater extents as they swung further and further apart, Tec-olptl's skin reacting instinctively so that he too looked as though he were made of the purest gold. He paused looking into the light, trying to make out the shape of the figure beyond, before taking an uncertain step forward. He hesitated again, looking back towards the old Slann who shook his head.

    "No, I am not permitted, this test is for you, but I will wait"
    "And if I fail?" Tec-olptl asked.
    Ulotp'al smiled for a third time, though this one was kindly, "If I believed you would, then we would not be having this conversation" he said, as slowly the doors swung closed again, blocking the old Slann from sight.

    Tec-olptl looked up, the light seemed contained now and he could glipse the chamber in its enterity, though he took no details in, as he was more concerned with the figure at the top of the stairs, great was it's bulk, mighty was it's presence even in death and all seeing was it's gaze that stared implacably at him through the gem eyes of it's wonderous death mask.

    "SPEAK, I am listening." Came the command, the voice was not angry, nor raised, but it was unstoppable
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2016
  3. spawning of Bob
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    spawning of Bob Well-Known Member

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    I don't have enough green stuff for that.

    I think this stuff will be even awesomer when I finally figure out what is going on.
     
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  4. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    I don't think I do either. :p
    Well, I'm guessing you've figured out which city Tec-olptl and Ulotp’al are in and who the figure is that summoned Tec-olptl to test him.

    As I said before I have come on huge bounds with the fluff, though 90% of it is still in bullet points, but I'm filling in a lot of gaps and missing info on recognised characters like the Old Ones (Xholankha gets a huge amount of filler) and Lord Kroak for example (probably more so for Kroak than any other character), but also the non-canon ones too.
     
  5. spawning of Bob
    Skar-Veteran

    spawning of Bob Well-Known Member

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    I couldn't tell that they were in the same city. The description of the pyramid within the pyramid was sublime.
     
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  6. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    I'm not doing well with the promptness, but thank you. :)

    There's more, so much more to come, I have given you no answers or conclusions yet, just different parts of a story that is due to be tied together.
     
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  7. spawning of Bob
    Skar-Veteran

    spawning of Bob Well-Known Member

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    You aren't the only one. There is a plethora of epics in various stages of epicness on L-O right now. Goodbye productivity if everyone adds a chapter all in the same week.
     
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  8. thedarkfourth
    Temple Guard

    thedarkfourth Well-Known Member

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    Actually we should organise a "finish your chapter" week every few months to get people motivated!
     
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  9. spawning of Bob
    Skar-Veteran

    spawning of Bob Well-Known Member

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    You obviously hate productivity.
     
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  10. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    The Lost.
    "Lost? No my eternal friend, I am no more lost than I am found, we call that which we cannot find lost, even though it will be found again and for that reason it is never lost to begin with. I am not lost, nor hidden, why should I stalk my way through the jungle when I can stride over mountains to better greet the stars. Why hide the physical form of my being when my mind has always been open to those who seek wisdom? Perhaps therein lies the confusion, for I dwell in the worst of all possible hiding places and so none ever think to find me there, do not look for me in the shadows, for I hide in the light."

    - Xholankha "The Lost"

    With a howling whoop of frenzy, Arkarat the Red, favoured son of Khorne, fell upon the pathetic frog mage in front of him. He and his brothers, the incandescent twelve, were so close to their sire that the pathetic creatures magicks fizzled weakly into nothing against them. He came down like a tidal wave of hate, his axes becoming a blur of red mist as they sank into the soft fleshy form again and again. Viscera, gore and wet chunks of meat flew in all directions and the toad wizard perished weakly under the onslaught. Arkarat screamed his triumph at the skies, so loud and long as though trying to contact his master in the far north, this world was now theirs.

    Nothing happened for a moment or two and it was that detail that seeded the first signs of doubt in Arkarat's mind. He turned back to the remains of the toad mage, even as his brothers waded on into the few remaining Lizard guards and down the pyramid. He could sense it now, no, he could see it, a soft blue glow formed around the fleshy ruin of the Slann. His hands clenched tighter around his axes, so tight the audible sound of his knuckles whitening could be heard even over the din of battle. The glow went from a trickle to a torrent, so fast and violently the explosion ripped through the fabric of the physical and non physical world. Demons engaged in combat, squealed in pain as their souls where erased from existence in mere seconds. Arkarat leaned forward, setting his immense bulk against the current, though with little use, his skin evaporating layer by layer, not even Khorne's power was preventing it. With difficulty he turned his head, one eye was obliterated instantly as the energy tore his flesh to the bone and deeper. His brothers were already skeletons and less, their very essence, each a fragment of Khorne's own being annihilated forever. He felt hate like nothing he had experienced before, flood his veins, as he used it's fuel to push himself forward intent on finishing the Slann permanently. It was a futile gesture, the fires in those scant few seconds had already blistered through his ribs and even now turned his lungs and heart to ash and then nothing.

    With his very last few moments of existence he saw it and then understood. They had been fooled, he, his brothers, his sire and all of the Chaos gods! They thought the frog creature a mere pathetic servant, but in the last of moments before he ceased to be, Arkarat met the gaze of something beyond even his master's comprehension, it was infinite, the breadth of it's mind so vast it felt utterly alien, immortal beyond the limits of time and mighty in ways that would cause all the powers of chaos to flee in terror if they so much as glimpsed it. It was the gaze of a true god.

    Tec-olptl stared into the glowing orbs and felt the immensity of time stare back, no words were exchanged something that was both a relief and on the edge of unbearable. Just as he was about to say something, anything to break that horrible silence, it was interrupted for him and with a single word.

    "GOOD"

    Ulotp’al sat impassively, un-moving with a stillness that would have shamed stone, his eyes fixed on those golden doors. How long had it been since Tec-olptl had entered, half an hour, at most and here he was, impatience like a terrible itch running through him, thousands of cycles of the sun had he witnessed and yet the anticipation of this one event gnawed at his soul.

    Slowly, lazily the great portals swung outward, light like a second sun forced it's way out, bathing the darkness in brilliant gold. Ulotp’al did not avert his gaze, focused now on the tiny silhouette that stumbled wearily from it's core, he allowed himself the first relieved smile he had ever made, even if the timing were not appropriate, the joy he felt was. He could see Tec-olptl clearly now, the little skink had aged considerably from the ordeal, but he was alive and his limbs would find a new strength soon. He peered back into the brilliance of the light and saw, for the briefest of moments, that exquisite death mask stare back, older than time, more patient than death. Despite himself, he nodded in reverence to it, not as one might to an elder, but as one who has conversed with the divine and shared in some a private joke.


    The doors slammed shut and Ulotp’al turned his focus back to Tec-olptl.

    "Well done" he said, allowing the slightest hint of warmth to carry on his voice.

    Tec-olptl said nothing, he stumbled, collapsed to his knees for a moment, before slowly rising again, looking up at his master.

    "I saw..." he began, but Ulotp’al cut him off.

    "What you saw and what was said will not be mentioned outside of that chamber again." he said sternly.

    "No-one will believe you and such words will cause harm the likes of which this world does not deserve to suffer a second time."

    "Then...then you know?!" said the chameleon in surprise.

    "No, even if I could bend my will through the Eternity portal, I would never be able to pierce the thoughts of Venerable Lord Kroak, there are none who can, God, Daemon, or mortal."

    He held up a finger, silencing Tec-olptl before he was given chance to voice more questions.

    "I, like the rest of the world, do not need to know what was said, save any commands you were given, no doubt you have questions, but they must remain unanswered, I doubt I have answers even if you voiced them."

    Ulotp’al's throne spun gently, as the mage priest slowly began to descend the steps, Tec-olptl following.

    He could hear the tap, tap, of the skink's feet on cold stone, already the little skink's footing was much more firm, he allowed a minor tilt of the head to observe Tec-olptl, his skin was reacting to his surroundings as they walked, chameleon skinks typically needed to focus for their skin to match their surroundings, the effort was minor, but never was it this responsive, or accurate.

    Ulotp’al allowed himself to smile inwardly this time, Tec-olptl's reactions where instantaneous, his skin reacting with such speed, it verged on pre-cognition, every shadow, every subtlety, every variation in light, or shadow and yet Tec-olptl was blissfully unaware he was even doing it. He allowed his inward amusement to blossom further, best not spoil the surprise, others will do that for him soon enough...well, perhaps one little surprise.

    "Were you given instruction?" Ulotp’al said, his voice arriving inside Tec-olptl's head.

    Tec-olptl reacted as though he'd be stung by a marsh wasp, leaping in surprise, as his head snapped up to look at Ulotp’al.

    "Try not to be quite so foolish young one" the words said, arriving once again without the Slann moving his lips.

    "I will be using this form of communication with you far more often from now on, lest you say something that should remain unspoken; don't speak, simply contemplate on your response, I shall hear it."

    "No lord" he thought.

    "Very well." the words echoed back. "There is much to do young one and over the course of many cycles, know this before you accept what I ask, what I expect of you. Your task in these events will not end, if you fall, then others will have no choice but to carry it for you, this task, this endeavor started long before you were spawned and it will continue on after you are no more. Can you do that for me?"

    "Yes" he voiced inwardly.

    "Good, you give me hope."


    Historian's note:
    My Lord, I hereby return the sums you paid in securing my services, for such a wonder and wealth of information I had never dreamed possible! I have translated a paltry half dozen of the plaques and manuscripts from the second crate and the knowledge held has completely re-written that which was previously known on the Secretive continent of Lustria. I pen this with feverish anticipation for the information contained within the remain plaques if the standard is anywhere near as comparable to those I've already looked at.

    I shall start at the beginning Lord, or I fear I shall lose track of the thread of information. I start with their deities, as it does indeed appear the fabled "Old Ones" are indeed deities, though not of the sort commonly depicted in other cultures. There is precious little in any solid descriptive terms of what these Old Ones look like, descriptions are abruptly straight forward, vague even, as many lend themselves towards being a title just as much as they might be a physical description. Huanchi for example is often titled as the "Jaguar God", yet he is in no way affiliated with the animal in question, beyond a reputation for exceptional stealth and effortless navigation through dense jungle terrain. Marks or "Spawnings" depicting an affinity for such qualities are attributed to him as a sign of favour, or indeed "blessing".

    The genders of the Old Ones and actual sex are all but impossible to place, references to specific Old Ones go this way and that, with various Old Ones being referred to as male one instant, female the next and genderless after! The Only exception I've been able to identify is a lesser known deity called "Rigg", though I will say more on her in my next report, I don't yet feel confident that I have all the available information with regards to her yet.

    At present I've been able to identify three tiers of the Lizardman pantheon, however unlike almost every other religion an Old One's position within the pantheon changes based on their activity. An Old One whose marks can be witnessed on generation after generation will be ranked in the first tier, where as one whose marks have not been seen for many thousands of years, will place in the second tier.

    Sotek, Serpent God
    Chotec, Lord of the Sun
    Itzl, god of cold-blooded beasts
    Tepok, the inscrutable, god of magic and wisdom
    Huanchi, Jaguar God of the earth and night
    Tzunki, lord of Water, agility, and keen eyesight
    Tlazcotl (possibly also called Tlaxcotl), the impassive, patient, and determined
    Quetzl, The Protector, Warrior-Defender
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  11. Bowser
    Slann

    Bowser Third Spawning

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    Wow! Starts with a bang and goes up from there! I love the historians notes section. My absolute favourite part.
     
  12. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    Cheers!

    Obviously there's loads more to come, what I'm trying to do at the moment is tie it altogether so that the gaps between the different time lines don't go on for too long (as I'm aware it's been a while since there was a section from the post end times).

    I will however give you a little semi spoiler, all is not well in paradise and soon the survivors of Lustria will have old and new foes to contend with, but without the guidance of the Slann, will they fall into cold blooded savagery (like their counterparts in the Dragon Isles)? Only a Slann, or being of similarly match power has that calming, focused influence, but with the Slann scattered to the stars, where could such help come from?

    Old Ones, new Slann spawnings (assuming such a thing is possible without the old ones) and just what exactly is Quango? Can the last remaining egg even be hatched and if it is, what lies inside?
     
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  13. Bowser
    Slann

    Bowser Third Spawning

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    I am definitely looking forward to more of this!
     
  14. Xholankha the lost one
    Chameleon Skink

    Xholankha the lost one Well-Known Member

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    there is little to no info on me anywhere, believe me i have looked thoroughly for it, maybe if Matt Ward wasn't so busy buffing the 'Crons or GK we might actually get some fluff on the Old Ones
     
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  15. spawning of Bob
    Skar-Veteran

    spawning of Bob Well-Known Member

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    Good to see the 3rd Dawn marches on, and as cryptically as ever. If it ever seems like ending, I will need to start at the beginning again (for now I am happy to treat each morsel as a meal in itself)
     
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  16. Rikard
    Bastiladon

    Rikard Well-Known Member

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    Hello again....

    Next segment, albeit a smallish one, I'm thinking I definitely will have a separate thread to include all the Historian's notes as they are relevant, but will also add to everything so it doesn't come across as glued together.


    Of focus.

    "The depth of clarity? What a ludicrous concept. From the ground one may see for miles, but from the air one may see for hundreds of miles. You stand upon a cliff and become lord of all you survey and so you build mighty structures and pillars of hard stone so that you might live among the clouds and see further than you did the day before. The new sight brings with it an addiction, a need to that drives you to see beyond that which you have only just glimpsed and so you build higher, taller, ever onwards you drive until you can see all that there was and ever will be.

    In that final moment, that final vision, you are lost, toppled from that pedestal by your own hubris, the trap is subtle, but very real, every time you raise yourself higher, you lose sight of what is directly below, you focus on the horizon, when the real danger lies at your feet though you cannot see it, for you have lost touch, you have lost focus to the world beneath you.

    We have seen farther than any other, all that can be seen has been witnessed by us and so there remains only one final task, we can climb down or fall down. The further one sees, the longer the fall and how great is that fall for those who have seen eternity?"

    - Xolotl

    It was a view unlike any other, a view that would bring any mortal who saw it, to stunned silence, for it's beauty surpassed the scope of words. Great mountains of white and grey stood proud in the North of the world, like bold, ancient nobles standing sentry to the world, surrounded by carpets of fine greens, reds, browns and even yellows, trees of immense stature and wonder that would soon be eradicated from this world, never to be seen again. The sky was a glorious azure blue of splendour, like the surface of a exquisitely cut gem, under it and scattered around the open plains and forests was a myriad of life, great and majestic beasts, men and other humanoid races and settlers, living off the riches of the land, establishing communities and dwellings of their own, expanding, thriving, living, dying.


    Yes, it was a view unlike any other, the image of a perfect world. Yet it was a false image, one that could only be gleamed when it was too late and wonder would evaporate under the storm of maddening terror. This world and all the apparent joys were gone, devolved into a maddening horror, a twisted parody fit to break the sanity of any unfortunate enough to witness it. For a moment nothing appeared to have changed and then...the sky caught fire.

    A titanic arch of pale stone, monstrous in proportion as it stretched from one side of the horizon to the other, came crashing down in a painfully slow display of devastation. Acrid smoke trails of jet black, left contours that forever eclipsed those blue skies. Iridescent flames of red, green and orange greedily clung to falling shape as it smashed into the earth, shattering the mountains underneath it. The shock wave sent those few clouds not swallowed by the foul smoke to flight, never to return to this once picturesque land. For a moment or two more, nothing happened as the remainder of the celestial arch came to its final, terrible resting place, but far worse was about to follow in the form of a new, unforeseen devastation. Those not close enough to the impact to be obliterated would soon envy those that were, as a new terror ran like an invisible fire through all that remained, man, beast, bird, tree. Like an invisible fire it exploded outwards, trees withered as though burnt under the invisible inferno, then changed, horrific shapes and colours that should not exist sprang into unholy existence, bearing terrible, tainted fruits. Man and beast too withered, warped, erupted, contorted and bent into shapes as un-natural as the event itself. The screams and howls of pain, torment and madness of millions of souls etched the very air with an agony so cruel it began to manifest. The mountains too, despite their size and resilience, began to waver, quivering under the weight of this unseen torrent, before finally they too changed, shaped, warped and re-emerged into designs never indeed for the material world. The sky, the land, the very air became a blur, as the final walls of reality were shattered and pure, unhindered, ever-changing chaos was vomited over the world.


    It was a sight unlike any other, any that had been and ever that would be, for any who were as fortunate and unfortunate to witness it, but there was one viewer, even here, who witnessed the full level of devastation and weathered the tide of chaos unchanged; it was he who caused it.


    - Exert From the lost prophecy of Tepok-Aanateopl-Exol-Soltaeol


    Tehenhauin stares in wonder at the egg in his claws, until now he had seen in scant few times and always in the presence of Lord Mazdamundi, but never this close, never to...touch it. It feels warm in his hands despite the night air, pulsing as though in time to a heart beat from within. He fancies that even on such a clear night it practically glows with the brilliance of star light...

    But it is glowing...

    That pulse he first thought to be his imagination IS real, it is throbbing, louder and hotter now...

    Tehenhauin holds it up to the sky so as to peer through the shell at the embryo within...he holds his breath, not knowing what to expect...something shimmers....it moves turning quickly within the egg... He cannot see clear what it is, or indeed what the shape is, other than it looks serpentine. It moves again and this time Tehenhauin feels it turn it's gaze towards him, he feels he raw power within an energy of a being older than the Slann and a cold intellect more patient than time itself.

    The attack is sudden!

    No...not an attack, it feels like an attack at first, an invasion, as a tiny sliver of the sleeper's mind enters this thoughts like a comet, it is not an experience he wishes a second time. His legs sag slightly from the effort, but he retains his balance, the sleeper wishes him no harm, but it even a subtle communication is not without some hurt. In that one moment it delivers a message...an instruction, it wants him to fulfil a duty, the final act in one of many that have been dutifully conducted over thousands of years. One final action, the lesser of all actions, yet the most important, an instruction of such magnitude delivered in two simple words.

    "Awaken me"

    Tehenhauin knows what to do now, he looks down the vast temple complex, back to the symbol of Quango and on shaky, yet determined feet he advances, the egg held carefully in both claws, never before has he carried such a burden and doubtless he will do so never again. He has heard and even read plaques referring to the being known as Quango and though rife with speculation, he understands well enough the importance of the sleeper. He continues on, down the slope, across the plaza and without a second thought over the lip of the great pool and towards the great symbol. The water around him feels cool, yet refreshing, soothing, it eases the weakness he still feels from the communion with the sleep and soaks away the malaise and weariness he has carried ever since the Old world's destruction. He feels the rhythmic throbbing in his claws intensify and despite the need of this task, he looks down at the egg, it shines with brilliance from within, the light undulating with pulse that feels more and more like a heart beat.

    He looks ahead to the centre of the pool and his goal, the great symbol. The water is acting strangely, it swirls and moves in strange patterns forming solid shapes here and there as though conducting some ritualistic ballet as he brings the egg to it's final resting place. He looks back at the egg, almost translucent now from the light within and for the very first time he sees the sleeper clearly, it is indeed serpentine, yet he can make out other shapes, two folding wings, almost like the mythical Coatl, but the sleeper is something entirely different, perhaps it chooses it's form, perhaps it's for is dependent on events, perhaps even the time of it's hatching, perhaps not.

    He is close now, so very close, another hundred paces or so, the water has no abandoned all pretences and a small stair way has formed, it rises not far and at it's zenith, a space dais, the final resting place for the egg.

    He feels the might of the Sleeper once again, though is more surprised than hurt this time, perhaps it has gauged his limits.

    "Not far" and "Re-birth"

    Tehenhauin reaches the water formed stairs and ascends slowly, they feel far more solid and shaped than he ever would have expected, but this is immaterial in comparison to everything else. He places the egg slowly and carefully in its place and just as slowly descends the stairs without turning his back. No sooner as his foot leaves the last step, the melt back into the water, leaving a single column suspending the egg, which now shines with such intensity it is like a second moon.

    The egg spins upright and levitates into the air, it's column evaporating an instant later, the light still intensifying. Tehenhauin shields his eyes against such brilliance, for there is only the light and the silhouette of the Sleeper.

    "Now...I return!" The voice is incredible, not delivered mentally as before, but loud, booming and for all to hear.


    The egg shatters, the glowing shards evaporating, leaving glow trails of vapor and a titanic Boom erupts from the skies turning night into day for the briefest of moments. Tehenhauin looks up and meets the gaze of a being long separated from Universe, it is still small in stature, for it is newly birthed, but it's power is without question.

    "Speak" it commands, the voice calm, yet as heavy as the roar of thunder.

    "What has transpired, where is the world that was re-shaped?"
     
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