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excerpt from:
The Book of Parables

by


Mouse the Wise



The Tale of the Son-in-Law


In a place beyond time and a time beyond space, in a distant realm and a faraway place, there lived a noble chieftain. He was a rich man with great stretches of land, and all the peoples of the Western Wilds attested to his nobility of mind and virtue. Though his sons were many, the chieftain had but the one daughter.

One day there came to him a poor but hardworking fellow who could find no work. He sat by the chieftain, his shoulders stooped and ears drooped, until the chieftain could not but ask what troubled him. "Ah, chieftain!" He cried, "I am a poor but hardworking man - if only I had good work to earn good bread so I can marry and bring joy to the hearts of my parents with grandsons and granddaughters! I am of strong build and all attest to my good work, but who would look on a poor man?"

The looked to him with sympathy and raised his hand. "Say no more my good man, your matter is solved." And so he called to his daughter and she came and stood at a distance, looking shyly from the young man to her father. "Look here my daughter, this is a poor hardworking man and he wishes after a good wife to guard his home and their children, so what say you?" And it was not long before they were married, and the chieftain employed his new son-in-law on some of his land and gave him a goodly stipend. And all was peace for a time.

One day the son-in-law came to the chieftain huffing and sighing and looking about him sadly so that the chieftain had not seated him long before he asked what was troubling him. "Oh! Father!" The son-in-law said - for sons-in-law were taken to calling their fathers-in-law by that in those days -, "I work day and night and I break my back, and all I get out of it is the pittance you afford me - and I look around me at all the unworked fields and am filled with misery. Oh what I would do if I could work them! Oh what I could do if I had but a little land to call my own."

The chieftain nodded in understanding and raised his hand to stop the lad from saying more. "Say no more, my son and consider your problem solved." And so he took him and showed him a great field, "this field before you, it is yours to work." And the son-in-law was filled with joy and thanked his father and blessed the Explorer for leading him to a father-in-law like him. So for a time the son-in-law worked the land and all was peace.

One day, after the chieftain had finished inspectings his herds, his son-in-law came and sat with him and he was sighing and huffing, and his brows were knotted and his eyes downcast in woe, so that he had not been sat down long before the chieftain asked him what was troubling him. "Oh! Father!" The son-in-law exclaimed, "I work these fields every day and every week, and look they are like a paradise. And I look beyond the smidgen of land I call my own to all the unworked fields and plains beyond, and I can only strike my head in woe and bemoan the fates. All these unworked fields and here I am, young and healthy and able to do so much more. If only I had more to work - why then all these steppes can be made to bloom."

On hearing this the chieftain raised his hand for his son-in-law to say no more. "Say nothing more my son, your matter is solved." And he took him so that they stood on a hill and all about them the fields stretched as far as the eye could see. "Here is my dagger. Tomorrow at su'unerise you will set out and walk as far as you wish, and when you reach a distance that pleases you only press this dagger into the ground and all that is behind it shall be yours. But hear my condition: you must return to this very spot before su'uneset."

And so the next day the son-in-law set out walking with excitement and vigour, his father-in-law's dagger in hand. He walked a great distance, and by the time the su'une was high in the sky he paused and wondered if it was sufficient. "No," he reasoned, "I should go a little more and then I can return running." And so he continued until it was late afternoon, and he wondered then if he should return. He paused and eyed the su'une, then shook his head. "No, I will have time if even an hour before su'uneset to return." And so he continued onward.

When night had fallen, the chieftain sat waiting on the hilltop and his son-in-law had yet to return. He looked on as the moon rose and only sipped on his tea of herbs and waited. Then he looked again when the moon was high in the sky and only sipped on his tea as his daughter approached with worry etched on her face. "Oh father, where is that husband of mine?" She asked.

"My daughter, return home and grow used to solitude for your husband is not returning this night or any night," he told her. But when the su'une rose she came pleading that he send out a party to look for him, and the chieftain complied. They did not find him, but found his corpse a long way from the hill he had been sprinting back towards, and the birds of the plains had had their way with his eyes and the worms sang and danced through his flesh. "Ah," said the chieftain when they brought the corpse to him, "but do we eat anything but dust?"

Learn, you who have wisdom, from that uncontended son-in-law. And you who seek after the stone of the philosophers and arcanists and metacausalists, which turns dust into gold: know that contentment is the metacausalist's stone!

KhoZee Productions presents:
Cruel Love


T O N T A

&


In which two goddesses meet, get dressed, make love, and make war.


PREVIOULSY:
WYN, pale goddess of beauty, creates her embassy on MONS DIVINUS, a true monument to perfection. Later, she saves ARIRA, the cycles goddess, and takes her home. There they speak and a flustered ARIRA is eventually seduced by the irresistible WYN. Meanwhile TONTA, goddess of life, escapes the realms of death where she had witnessed EKU, death goddess, perish. Emerging into the Ashlands, she creates the varasons and ashland hounds before venturing forth once more...


When Dihar Adech approached Tonta she did not quite clock at first that he was a soul. They lounged together for three days before she got up and told him she would now be eating him, and he told her then that he had only one request of her. “Go on,” the goddess nodded.

“As I am already dead, I wan-”

“You’re what?” The goddess exclaimed, taking a hold of him and looking more closely for the first time. “Oh. Goodness. So you are.” She leaned back. “How’d that happen?”

“Well, I was resting - minding my own business as you do - when along came this tiny, rude lady-”

“Ah, tiny and rude. They seem to go together don’t they?” The goddess muttered. “Anyway, so: tiny and rude.”

“Exactly. She didn’t like me for some reason and decided to just… well, she tore my head off. And out o-”

“Oh my! That’s great.” The goddess laughed. “Was it like, a clean tearing off, or was it like, really bloody?”

“Uh, the latter actually - but shouldn’t y-” but Dihar was cut off once more.

“Oh my! Small, rude, and STRONK. Who was it? Where is she?”

“I followed her for a while, but she just ignored me. Last I saw her she was at this great mountain.”

Tonta nodded absentmindedly and quickly gobbled up Dihar’s soul. “Mountain, right!”

When Tonta got to Mons Divinus - getting distracted on the way by a weird misty swampland with all manner of disgusting creatures she did not remember making - she was pleasantly surprised by the great degree of nothing that she found. She circled round the mountain one way, then circled around it the other, and found nothing (although she smelled a particularly fetid stench coming out of one place). It wasn’t until she felt another goddess that she thought to look up, and even as she looked she felt the coming of the seasons and all the cycles that were necessary for life. She had not felt their absence before - as though by her mere will all the animals and life forms had merely existed, all the cloud whales and octopi had gone on feeding and raining without a care for the seasons or the climes. But now that they were here everything seemed more logical. “That’s important, I guess,” Tonta shrugged as she began climbing the mountain.

She took her time and it was not until the following afternoon that she arrived up top and was able to behold the city. She had come across a few humans on her climb and whenever she saw one she boinked its head off rather cleanly. “I think I’m meant to be angry at you guys or something.” But as it were, she eventually recruited one of them to lead her to where a specific goddess lived.

“Do you know her name?” The woman she had grabbed asked.

“No. Hey, Dihar, do you know her name?” Dihar’s great serpentine head emerged from Tonta’s back, to the shock of the woman, and he shook it.

“No, don’t know her name.”

“Uh, do you know what she looks like?” The human asked.

“Oh! Yes,” Tonta said, “she’s small, rude, and strong.”

The human looked at the goddess with pursed lips. “Uh… can you be more specific?”

Tonta turned back to Dihar. “Be more specific, jackass.”

The former-drakhorey gave a hissing sigh. “Well, she was white. White hair, white skin, white eyes-”

“OH!” The human exclaimed, cutting Dihar off, “I know her. She lives in - what did she call it? It’s that white place there, see?”

Tonta turned her head to where the human was pointing and she did indeed see. “Nice, thanks... uh, what’s your name?”

“Ba-” but before the woman could finish, Tonta threw her to Dihar.

“Lunch, Dihar.” It was indeed. Without further ado, she dashed down into the city, ignored everyone and everything, and rushed up the marble pathway, past the fountains with the naked women, inside to the temple proper, up towards the cool statue of her slaying a drakhor- “wait-” she came to a screeching halt and looked again, “that ain’t me.”

“No, that’s her!” Dihar declared. Only he was hissing and spitting of course because he couldn’t talk.

“Well, it’s pretty cool buuttttt…” a huge hammer and chisel exploded into the goddess’ hands and she took to hammering away at Wyn’s face. A great cloud of marble and stone rose up and the cacophony was something vicious. When at last Tonta stepped back she beheld the statue: herself standing above the corpse of Baknul Adech. “There, what d’ya think?”

“Uh, are you sure that was a good idea?” Dihar asked.

“Sure! We drakhorey slayers are best friends. And I’ve killed…” she counted on her fingers, “two? I can’t remember. I’m sure she’ll appreciate this present. Anyway, where is sh-” but Tonta had not finished her words before she spotted her host, clearly drawn by the great amount of noise Tonta had been making. “Oh my god oh my god. Quickly hide Dihar. I need to look pretty and your ugly head is not wanted here.”

The pale Wyn, her arms crossed, floated down a flight of stairs, eyes drawn to Tonta with suspicion. She wore nothing on her person and her hair was held up in a messy bun. “My god, aren’t you just the prettiest!” Tonta exclaimed as the other goddess approached.

Wyn, for her part, said nothing before she came to a halt before Tonta. Her feet lightly set down on the ground and she eyed Tonta up with a side glance as her main focus was upon the statue. Her lips curled down into a frown, arms coming uncrossed before she looked down at the life goddess again, who, for her part, smiled innocently. “Is it common practice,” Wyn began in a haughty voice, “to deface artworks where you come from? To chisel away unwelcomed? Turning perfection imperfect?” she asked.

Tonta looked back at the statue. “Art? That?” Her eyes turned back to Wyn. “I thought it was just a record of the best drakhoslayer - and that, I’ll have you know, is me.” She thumped her chest proudly. “So, out of respect for the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, I had to change it for you. I’d be grateful if someone went out of their way to ensure the accuracy and faithfulness of my works to be honest. Consider it a gift, from me to you.” Almost without pause, she stepped forward and placed her hands on Wyn’s cheeks, then pinched them. “My goodness, how are you so- well, like you say, perfect.” She withdrew her hands quickly. “Oh, I’m Tonta by the way. What’s this place anyway?”

The pale goddess recoiled at the touch with a look of shock. She blinked once, twice and then took a sharp breath. "Oh… So many words, such little meaning. You are not one for manners, I see… Tonta. Nor would any education benefit you. There is a wildness to you, infectious to some, a hindrance to others. But even as I speak these words, they fall like leaves, soon forgotten. Pointless, aren't they?" she sighed.

Tonta snickered slightly at Wyn’s words. “Well, hey. Fuck you too,” she grinned.

Wyn raised an eyebrow. "My, such crass language Tonta. One might think it unbefitting of a Goddess' stature, not that you would care I think. But, if you must know, this is my embassy and I am Wyn, Goddess of Beauty. I must thank you for your compliments, it seems you do have an eye for it, at least." she gave a small bow. The life goddess acknowledged Wyn’s words with a nod.

“I don’t claim to be perfect, but I know a pretty face when I see one. And you know, you’ve got a great, uh, ‘bod’ and all, but don’t you think it would be even prettier if you wore something? I have it on good authority that I’m a great fashion advisor, and I think you’ll look stunning in… hmmm,” she clicked her fingers and a great black dress wrapped itself around Wyn, the darkness standing in stark contrast to her skin of perfect snow. A mirror formed up before the goddess and Tonta stood Wyn before it. “Alright, maybe that’s a bit over the top - but my, I could just eat you up. Don’t you think?”

"Hm. Perhaps there is some merit to that claim." Wyn said as she looked at herself. She blinked and the head-dress turned to smoke, leaving her flowing white locks to fall down. “And perhaps such an alteration to my statue can be forgiven.” She looked at Tonta through the mirror. “If your plan was to seduce me, perhaps that's working too.” She gave a sly smile. The life goddess seemed to lose her composure for the first time, blood rushing to her cheeks.

“What!? Me? No! I mean, you’re pretty but- uh, I’m not. Like. Uh. Sharrup.” She stepped away and turned to the statue, coughing loudly. “And anyway, my alterations were good - you’re just too dense to see it.” She turned her head back mischievously. “You should give me a kiss right here,” she tapped her cheek, “and tell me you’re sorry. AND DON’T THINK I FORGOT THAT YOU CALLED ME DUMB!” She harrumphed and turned back away with an exaggerated air of offense.

A slender hand wrapped around Tonta's neck, another wrapped around her waist and she was pulled into Wyn from behind. “As you wish.” The beauty goddess breathed into her ear, before placing a gentle kiss upon her cheek and then another like a parting gift. The goddess sighed in Tonta's ear, her hand cupping itself around the goddess’ chin. “I apologize for my behavior, my lady. I judged you too quickly. I was rude… Uncouth. You are exquisite.” She tilted Tonta's neck with care and blew upon a spot before going in for another kiss. The life goddess flushed crimson and allowed the other goddess to continue, enjoying the unfamiliar sensations on her skin, the softness and warmth of the other, the hammering of her heart.

“Yo- you’re a terrible liar,” she coughed, her face burning, “but I don’t mind if… you lie to me a bit more.” She turned around in the other’s arms and buried her face into Wyn’s shoulder, biting at the nape of her neck before moving upward and catching an earlobe between her lips. She withdrew and her eye caught Wyn’s, causing Tonta to smile sheepishly. “Th- those cannibals would have had a carnival over you.”

With the back of her fingers, Wyn caressed Tonta’s cheek while her other hand pulled the shorter goddess in. Wyn nibbled on Tonta’s ear before placing gentle kisses upon her neck. After several moments of this she spoke, “would you devour me?” She smirked, then took one of Tonta’s hands and gave a tug. “Come.” She said, voice dripping with yearning. “Come have a taste.”

And oh, did she devour her. When Wyn returned the favour, however, Tonta lying back in the bed and allowing the pleasure to rock her slowly, the life goddess could not shrug off a deep and growing feeling of unease. She could not place her finger on why she was suddenly so tense until, very suddenly, the voice of Mouse (yes, that very Stupid Dumbfuck) echoed in her mind. “Oh, fuck,” Tonta groaned.

“Have you no shame, lady?” he had asked her, “you who have taken the form of woman, have you no regard for the sacredness of the womanly form and the holy bonds that precede the union of man and woman? Have you no regard for the chastity and honour of those whose form you have assumed?”

“Sh-shut up,” Tonta muttered, an almost comical mix of pleasure and annoyance flashing on her face. At the sound of those words, Wyn stopped and looked at Tonta, tilting her head. “Is something wrong, my lady?” She asked innocently. Tonta glanced down at her.

“Oh, umm… n- no. I just- well, remembered something stupid.” She gulped and wrapped a leg around Wyn’s back, drawing her back in. “I- uh, was enjoying thaat,” she purred with a broad, purse-lipped smile. But no sooner had Wyn returned to her ministrations when the life goddess jumped backwards and her foot flew out, smacking Wyn across the face and launching her right out of the bed and into the opposite wall. “I FUCKING HATE THAT MOUSE!” Tonta wailed, and the force of the wail alone caused the bed to collapse beneath her. She blinked and jumped out. “Oh. Shit. W- Wyn?” She approached the pale goddess and looked down at her with guilt and concern.

A small stream of violet ran from the pale goddess’ nose as she snapped her eyes open, revealing narrow slits not unlike those of a snake. She touched the ichor flowing from her nose as she stared daggers up at Tonta. The life goddess winced and bit her lip. “Fuck, I’m so sorry.” Wyn looked upon her blood and her face contorted into a look of cold fury. Tonta took half a step back, fear and uncertainty in her eyes, but in an instant Wyn was on her feet and towering above the life goddess. She grabbed her by the throat and hissed, “this is how you treat ME?” She threw Tonta to the side, the force of the blow shattering the wall. Wyn was upon her before the stone had even settled, pinning her down even as she mewled in shock and struggled. “I let you desecrate my art. I let you dress me. I let you bed me. And. You. Hit. ME? Abhorrent!” Wyn backhanded Tonta across the face and then let her drop. “Leave. Now. Do not return.” She commanded, standing above her, seething.

The life goddess remained crumpled on the ground, her eyes wide and shocked, for what felt like an age, clearly attempting to process what had happened over the course of the last few split seconds. Her eyes grew wet and she brought a hand to where Wyn’s hands - velvety and coaxing not mere minutes ago - had caused ripples of pain. She did not cry, however, and through the hammering of her heart and her roiling emotions she was able to stagger to her feet and brush the dust and shattered marble of the wall from her naked form. She looked at the taller Wyn, her eyes still wet. And even as Wyn gazed back they hardened, as though a layer of ice was growing across them. Tonta chuckled mirthlessly then. “Y-you’re still dense, Wynnie. You don’t need to apologise this time though, you’re forgiven,” and she blew her a kiss, turned around, and walked away before adding loud and clear, “fucker!”

“Bitch.” Came a cold response from Wyn.

Tonta snapped her fingers and her great flowing yellow cloak wrapped itself around her, and she was soon out of sight.


Wyn stared at the statue of Tonta, fists clenched. The previous hours' events were still at the forefront of her mind. That insolent cur, who was she to make her bleed? To mock her? To deface her? She was nothing!

She had made her a fool…

In a flurry of rage, Wyn attacked the statue, bashing it to pieces. When it was dust, the fire inside still burned. She was not satisfied with the stone. No… what was it she had said… that she held the record for slaying those, drakhorey?

Well… that could change.


You make me wait for months! It's as though you don't like Giwabi! Gosh, should we reboot via a doomsday preacher giving a monologue about the end of the world, and then start anew without any of this Giwabi stuff? :P


You lack faith and patience!
T O N T A

In which a goddess eats a drakhorey, makes some dogs, and christens a great fucktard race.


PREVIOULSY:
After creating the drakhorey and the phoenixes, as well as trapping a drakhorey soul in a massive pillar, TONTA wandered around watching the world die! She saved no one until proto-MOUSE THE WISE told her to save the animal kingdom. In doing this she mixed all the animals into a great creation soup, which emerged as strange amalgamations on the shard - such as cloudy whales and octopi whose piss is the rain. She pledges never to save anything ever again. Later she observed mankind and, after stumbling on some kind of proto-furry cult, decided to destroy them by creating the ape/monkey race of the MONKILLI. She also created many other species and turned MOUSE THE WISE into a mouse for rejecting her generosity. Following this TONTA followed the spirits of the dead to the Underworld where she discovered demons feasting upon souls. She fights them and eventually comes upon the Path of the Dead and meets the death goddess Eku. The two battle but quickly find themselves complete in the presence of the other. They walk and talk until they reach Dol Arlessa, the ultimate resting place of souls before reincarnation. After having a great time together, the Festival of Death & Rebirth begins and Eku, to the shock of all, dies! Tonta and Umat, Eku's daughter, then leave Dol Arlessa.

Tonta, as you might imagine, was pretty pissed off. In fact, she had walked herself into an increasingly more pissed of state as she retreated down the Path of the Dead (and every soul who crossed her way knew from the stony glares she threw their way to give her a wide berth). So it did not help her mood in the slightest when she emerged back on the Shard to find that the world had turned into some kind of fiery hellscape. Mountains spewed fire and great burning boulders crossed the sky and lakes of lava congealed and simmered here and there. And the place seemed to have attracted her children for even now she could see some three or four drakhorey flying high above or wading through the flaming lakes or reclining on a rock here or there.

In her pissed of state they seemed like a godsend, the perfect punching bag to take her frustrations out on. She battered the one who was peacefully reclining until her was a mess of flame and scales and blood, and when she turned to take out her furies on the others she found that they had swiftly vacated the area. She sniffed. It would have been nice to play with the others, but one was sufficient, she figured. She seated herself on a makeshift bloody seat and absentmindedly picked at her nose, wiping the bits of bogey off on the meat below her and sighing. "Fucking Eku," she mumbled with a slight yawn - because damn that was a long walk back down the Path of the Dead and it took a bit out of you.

She toed at a bit of pooling lava as she rested, and she caused it to rise and fall and made fanciful shapes out of it. It struck her that one of the shapes looked quite a bit like a dog. She leaned forward at the thought and drew out the shape until a great lumbering hound of rock and magma stood before her. She yawned again and watched it skulk off, then leaned back into the yet-warm meat mattress and closed her eyes.

Now of all the things she expected to see when she woke up, weird walking drakhorey were not of them. She watched the strange drakhoric anthropomorphs for a few seconds as they milled about her nonchalantly, and then leaned forward so that a great serpentine drakhorey erupted from her back and snaked like lightning towards the biggest the anthropomorphs. One bite took out his head and torso. There was a brief pause... then the rest of him was taken up in a quick movement.

Well. They weren't so nonchalant around her after that. In fact, they avoided her like the plague for a good long time, though every now and then she would spy one of them peeking at her from a distant ridge (perhaps thinking itself subtle or out of her range). After a time, one short and stocky one neared her - groveling and trembling and attempting to debase itself before her. She could see that it had something in its hand, and a quick inspection suggested it was some kind of offering. One of her serpentine appendages speared forth. The creature cried out and fell back, letting the offering fly, only for her living appendage to grab it and retreat to the reclining goddess, dropping the offering in her hand. She raised an eyebrow when she saw it. "Oh, but you're a cheeky one aren't you. A flower eh?" And not just any flower, for it had been made of cooled magma and studded with crystals and gems. It was no piece of art, but some effort had clearly been put into it. "Cute," she noted sweetly, then casually threw the flower back at the creature. It rooted itself in its skull and the creature fell immediately dead.

"Lady." A voice rumbled. Tonta looked to the side and found the soul of the drakhorey staring at her. "Seriously. What's your deal?"

"Oh, you're still here?" She frowned, "thought you'd have been sucked into demonville by now." The soul - and this was no blob, this was an enormous drakhorey soul - seemed to grow concerned at this, causing Tonta to smile. "Or, you know what, I think I'll keep you. What's your name?" She grabbed him and fiddled around with his tail.

"Uh, Varak Adech," came his response. "What are you doing by the way?"

"Just working on..." his body tightened all of a sudden and his arms and legs flattened, "that," and she swallowed his now-serpentine form and watched as, almost immediately, a new serpentine appendage grew out of her back. "And you know what, in your honour Varak Adech I will name these weird creatures that came out of you... Tontatites."

"...how is that in my honour?" The new appendage gave her a quizzical look.

"Yeah, I'm honouring your sorry arse by naming them after me," she explained.

"Uh. Well. I'm honoured and all. But maybe don't honour me?" There was a brief pause, then a mumble. "'cause that's the shittest thing I've ever heard."

"What'd you say?" Tonta snapped, eyes flashing.

"Uh, I think you should go with something nice-sounding rather than trying to honour me. I am honoured enough anyway, chuffed to be... uh... some kind of extra arm for you. Or something."

"I don't like your tone guy, but whatever. I'll call them Fucktards. Nice and easy to remember, and they'll be sure to know what they are."

"Uh, how about something simple like, I dunno, varasons?" The Varak-appendage suggested.

"More like sons of bitches, but yeah whatever, fucktard varasons it is. Hey, fucktards! Come here." And her voice seemed to summon the hundreds, nay thousands, of the strange creatures. The goddess lined them up and stood ceremoniously before them. She brought forth her stick and for perhaps a week walked from one to the next, boinked them on the head, and christened each of them "first fucktard... second fucktard... tenth fucktard... hundredth fucktard... five-hundred and thirty-seventh - or was it thirty-ninth, fuck this." It was in fact the five-hundred and sixtieth, but at that point she grew bored of the ceremony and picked one of them at random to continue it. On being thus chosen and elevated above the others he grew in size and seemed immediately more authoritative and commanding. Without hesitation, he continued the fucktard christening ceremony with great solemnity.

Tonta, for her part, got to finding a way out of that gods forsaken hellhole.



excerpt from:
The Book of Reflection

by


Mouse the Wise


I. On the God that Was, Is, and Will Be

I begin this book of reflections with a greeting to the God That Was, the God That Is, and the God That Will Be. I salute that being who Was before the first ending of the world; by whose will the world was first made, was first made to end, and was first made to be saved. It is to that being that I send my salutations and my regards, and it is the pleasure of that being that I seek and aspire towards. And I declare, so that all creation may witness, that my great aspiration and my single-minded purpose is the preservation of the knowledge of the ways taught by that being - carried in the hearts of generation after generation of pious ancestors until it came at last to so incapable and poor a creature as myself even as the world ended all about us. I pen this record so that when in time I will have passed from existence there will remain a word calling people to the remembrance of that glorious being and to the remembrance of the ways He taught us before the world ended and the beings we now call gods emerged.

Worthy of worship indeed are the new gods, for they are powerful and they saved something of the world from complete ruination. But we must be careful, those of us who are dutiful to the gods and seek out their pleasure, of ascribing to them more worth than is theirs - for those of moral rectitude do not ascribe to anything more worth than is due to it, and do not ascribe to anything less worth than is its rightful due; and those who like to be praised for what they are not and what they have not done are truly most impoverished in spirit and are despised.

And so, in worshipping the new gods we must first know what a god is, and why the God That Was, That Is, and That Will Be is a true God while the new gods are gods insofar as they wield an aspect of divine power. Any true God, and this must be known by any who pursue true knowledge of the divine, must by its very nature be eternal without beginning, and so uncreated. It precedes all things and is preceded by nothing. By this metric, we can ascertain that there was a time when the new gods definitively came into being - indeed, they came to being in my own lifetime. Before that point, the new gods did not exist at all, of that we can be certain - and there are those still amongst us who bear witness to that, as I do, and the new gods (were one to ask them) would bear witness to that also. There was a time where they did not exist, and then they came into existence. Thus they have a beginning and are not eternal, are preceded by other things and do not precede all things. That is the nature of the new gods.

From our observation of the world, we can see that many things come into being by the will of the gods. Northing is self-created, nothing emerges from itself, everything emerged from the gods. And we can also ascertain, since the world was coming to an end not too long ago, that all things perish if not maintained by the gods - and that is why our world came to an end and there is now only a small part of it that remains. For a reason we cannot ascertain the divine power that maintained our world decided to stop maintaining it for a brief time, and then the new gods came into being to once more maintain our world. The thinking mind can piece all this together: if all things that have a beginning are created, and the new gods had a beginning, then the new gods must have been created. Since all that exists is created and has a beginning, and since the new gods - and, indeed, our universe - have beginnings and are capable of ending, they must have been created. At some point in the chain must have been a first creator, a creator who is by necessity uncreated. An ultimate creator-being.

It was that ultimate creator-being that created the new gods and gave them an aspect of its great power. Now a thinking person will say: well, if that creator-being created them and gave them such great powers, then that being must have been even greater in power than the new gods. And that is manifestly true - for if I come to you and tell you that I will give you a mountain of gold, then that must mean that I have more than a mountain of gold, or at the very least equal to it. Thus the being who created all of the new gods must be at the very least as mighty and powerful as all of them together - and it is probable that this being is many times more powerful than even that, perhaps even of infinite power since in truth it is the ultimate creator and maintainer of our world, capable of destroying it at will and restoring it at will.

I shall content myself with this on that topic. Know then that the great being of whom I speak is the God That Was, Is, and Will Be. His ways are unknown to the new gods - perhaps in His wisdom he sought to hide Himself from them. But we who yet have memory of the days before the new gods were created remember also the teachings of our pious forefathers, the same teachings that the God taught us. To gain the pleasure of that being who is able to create and uncreate the gods and so is able to create or destroy our world at will, we must follow His ways and teachings. I spoke of this to the new goddess Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut in the days before she turned me into a mouse, but she dismissed my words and refused to give it thought. Are we to guide who do not wish after guidance? We can only deliver the message and leave the spark of this knowledge alive that perhaps there will come one day a generation of people who know the truth and live by it, who honour the God That Was, Is, and Will Be and who honour the gods He has sent forth into this world as His deputies. But we must never be blinded from the light of truth or be deluded into thinking that the deputies are true gods; we will then have fallen into the deep crevices of untruth and darkness.

II. On How I Became a Mouse

There have been those who have asked me to tell of why Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut turned me into a mouse, and I shall pen that tale here. Know that Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut is a being that speaks great profanities and I do not write these words here except out of faithfulness to the discourse between her and me.

Sometime after Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut created those magical bees, which suck nectar and magic out of flowers and trees and put it into their honey, she poured the soup of creation into a gourd and turned that gourd into a wooden staff - and so if you see her carrying a wooden stick or a sceptre or something of the like, know that held within that are all the creatures that were or could be. It was, of course, on my advice that she chose to save the creatures; and though she saved no animal that existed in our world before, she gave us strange creatures that hold some of their physical traits and echo their ways.

She decided to continue her explorations of the world once the bees had flown away and insisted I accompany her. "Only if you promise to do good by all creatures we cross," I told her. She laughed at me and forced me into a cage, and took me along with her anyway. She is a capricious and cruel being!- may she be guided to the path of goodness and high morals. We went then and we observed the terrible state of affairs of humanity; much goodness had been forgotten and the tree of evil had taken root in their hearts and its branches speared at the skies. To Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut this was amusing, and so I chastised her now with kindly words and now with harsh ones; but my words increased her in nothing but waywardness and moved neither her heart to feel nor her mind to think.

When I called on her to damn the cannibals who ate one another, she ignored me and ate with them. When I called on her to damn the sons and daughters who abandoned their aging parents when they needed them most, she ignored me and sat with the abandoned old folk and watched them die - though she was capable of saving them! When I called on her to damn those who commanded their people to be patient and forebear while they ate the best of the food and more than their rations, she caused the food of the needy to rot while that of those who lorded over them to grow bounteous. When I called on her to damn those who, finding that they had physical power over others, went raiding and raping and transgressing against others, she praised their freedom and wilfulness. "Have you no shame, lady?" I asked her, "you who have taken the form of woman, have you no regard for the sacredness of the womanly form and the holy bonds that precede the union of man and woman? Have you no regard for the chastity and honour of those whose form you have assumed?"

"Alright look here you fucker, I didn't bring you along to do my head in with your nagging. Since you won't shut your yapper I'm shutting it for you," was her response. And I was not able to speak after that for a long time. Not until we one day came to a cave and inside it we found a group of people dressed up as animals and going around on all fours, yapping and barking and acting in all ways like mere creatures. I remember that Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut stared silently at them for the longest time before turning to me and saying: "What. The. Fuck."

Those were the first humans that Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut obliterated. At some point during her week-long obliteration of the place she released me from the bindings of silence and I was able to speak to her and calm her. But nothing I could say could dissuade her from her newfound conviction. "Humans are a blight. They need to be exterminated."

I have no doubt that many monkilli will refuse to accept their creation story, but this is the truth. They were made by a fickle and capricious goddess who did not care for the true sins of humanity, who was neither interested in learning morality nor teaching it, and instead decided to whimsically destroy the human race because of this strange animal-fetish cult made up of some five or six people. This is the truth, and if the monkilli accepted it then they would halt their futile vendetta. But as it were, it was at that time and for that reason that Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut tapped her staff upon the earth and caused to emerge therefrom the many monkilli races. And even at this moment that strange species goes forth to carry out the will of a goddess whom they do not truly know but regardless adore. But they are a young species, and they will learn.

After that Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut created much, and I had the opportunity to witness the creation of many strange and terrible and wonderful things. She filled the world with all nature of snakes and lizards then - she has a strange affinity for such things, she seems always to start with them. Great lizards and small, of all shapes and colours - and that is quite beside the dircaans. She decreed crocodilians of all sizes to roam the many rivers that sprouted from the heart of the Shard, and placed on the rivers and lakes and seas and oceans seals - aye, river seals and sea seals, she cared little for constancy or consistency but made as the fancy took her. And as the ocean was birthed she sent forth fishes small and fishes great, lumbering behemoths and barely visible magical plankton. Though she made no more cloud fish, the flying fish seemed to be made to occupy the world above and the world below while immediately being of neither. There were frogs and toads and salamanders, some of them veritable giants relative to others. Birds of enormous size, birds of the tiniest proportions, flightless birds and birds that by all logic and reason should not have flown and yet did. Cats large and small she loosed, bears and bear dogs, bats and rodents (and, of course, mice!), moles and voles and otters and weasels and ferrets and badgers. Great leaping hares and small rabbits, raccoons and their like, skunks at whose small even I - then still a soul - was made to weep. The civet and the mongoose and the hyena were not left to wallow in the soup, and there were mouse deers and musk deers, great deers and small deers, and bovines roaming in great herds. Pigs were loosed and camelids joined the giant snow camel (humpless camelids and humped, large camelids and small), and on the rivers the hippo was made to challenge the crocodile. There were more yet, she was for the first time untiring and persistent - armadillos were sent forth, marsupials, possums and opossums, wombats, platypi, rhinos and tapirs, dawn horses, anteaters, monkeys and apes and squirrels and beavers. They are more than a mere mortal can hope to remember, all that was in the soup and desired release found release - and when she was done she looked into the soup and found that even after such exertions it was no closer to being depleted than when she first pulled out the grobin. And she understood then, I believe, that the soup would never be depleted so long as she herself was undepleted and I saw her smile a satisfied smile and one would have almost thought her innocent and beautiful then.

But I shall now list some of the more interesting specimens here with an accompanying attempt at visual representation:

  • Mushroom Boar: A large boar with fungal growths that dwells in Vatrai.
  • Mosasa: A giant aquatic reptile that inhabits the oceans and seas. It can reach fifty-eight feet in length, making it a veritable leviathan, and is a truly formidable apex predator that can prey on even the largest forms of aquatic life. Its sight is extraordinarily keen while its sense of smell is quite deficient. In a similar way to crocodiles, mosasa attacking one another tend to grapple the other's head with their jaw, causing severe head injuries and often leading to death. They also occasionally engage in cannibalism.
  • Head-shielded Fish: A small heavily-armoured bottom-feeding fish that lives in estuaries. Its diet consists mainly of worms and other burrowing organisms in the mud and algae.
  • Great Bone-headed Dunkler: An enormous, armoured and jawed fish, reaching thirty-two feet in length. It has a two-part exterior of armour-like bone, which makes it a relatively slow but powerful swimmer. Rather than teeth it possesses two pairs of sharp bony plates that form a beak-like structure. They are able to open and close their jaw at incredible speeds and produce a very powerful bite force on closing their jaw. They live in shallow waters during adolescence and move onto deeper waters in adulthood.
  • Lesser Bone-headed Dunkler: A relative of the aforementioned Dunkler, it often reaches some twenty-six feet in length. It does not have the same boney teeth of it relative, but is rather a filter feeder. It uses its capacious mouth to swallow or inhale schools of small fish, krill and plankton. Its mouth-plates were made in such a way as to retain prey while allowing water to escape as it closes its mouth.
  • Lada: An enormous filter-feeding fish, capable of reaching lengths of one-hundred feet. Despite its size, it can often fall prey to apex predators.
  • Cirnus: A large, short-necked aquatic reptilian that can reach lengths of thirty-six feet. An apex predator, it is a fast swimmer and actively hunts down or pursues its prey. Being an apex predator, it preys on large aquatic life forms such as the aforementioned lada, alongside smaller ones.
  • Water Angel: A strange fish that has an elongated body, a whip-like tail, and long, wing-like pectoral fins. Its armor is made up of a complex mosaic of small scales. It is an enigmatic creature, but the goddess poured strange magicks into it and gave it her blessing.
  • Canthala: An elusive fish that tends to live in shallow coastal waters, especially around islands. It can reach lengths of twenty feet. It is generally not fit for sapient consumption due to its poor nutritional value and can cause various illnesses of consumed.
  • Dircaans: A diverse species of giant reptilians. They include carnivorous and herbivorous subspecies, and some, such as the comb-headed and one-horned dircaans, also eat small wildlife and fish on occasion. The small dircaan is too small to ride and occupies a niche similar to that of goats and sheep in some communities. The water dircaan is semiaquatic, and so is adapted to aquatic environments and is generally to be found stalking swamps, rivers, and wetlands.
    • Badger Dircaan: A herbivorous dircaan with a bone-like beak, able to reach lengths of six feet. Boasts powerful hindlegs and claws that enable it to dig up roots and tubers, and its powerful bone-like beak can make short work of tough plant material.
    • Tiger Dircaan: A carnivorous bipedal dircaan of moderate size, capable of reaching lengths of sixteen feet. It has a massively built skull bearing dagger-like teeth, large eyes that allow for extremely keen vision, and elongated nostrils providing a strong sense of smell. They prey on creatures large and small, including the badger dircaan.
    • One-horned Dircaan
    • Tri-horned Dircaan
    • Small Dircaan
    • Comb-headed Dircaan
    • Winged Dircaan: Sometimes also called the Lesser Drakhorey, though there is little in common between the firebreathing leviathans of the heavens that are the drakhorey and the comparatively mundaned winged lizards that are the winged dircaans.
    • Water Dircaan
    • Great-beak Dircaan: An enormous dircaan, beaked and toothless, which is capable of flight. It boasts a wingspan of up to forty feet and a standing shoulder height of ten feet. It has an exceptionally large and sharp beak, large eyes that enable telescopic vision, and tends to inhabit plain environments that give way to cliffs so as to facilitate its glided flight. While entirely capable of such flight, they are extremely capable land predators, snatching up their prey from above - often coordination in large groups so as to prevent smaller prey from escaping with their larger size and great wingspan.


Now, when Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut was satisfied with all this, the goddess turned to me and asked what form of life I wished to be breathed into. My response came swift - too swift, I now know: "I have no desire for life, my lady." I told her, and hindsight has taught me what a great lack of wisdom lay in those words.

"Go on, I insist." She said, smiling that pleasant and innocent smile of hers. Beware you who associate with Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut! Beware, for such a smile often precedes some cruel and inexplicably callous act on that divine's part! You have been warned, so let there be no cries about the injustice of it when you find yourself gazing into that smile; you were informed of this before and associated with her regardless, so taste you now the bitterness that comes with such evil company!

"I do not fear death, my lady. I am excited to see what comes next." I told her in response - a second mistake! Mouse the Wise? Why, Mouse the Fool! And so her smile then became so sweet that it was really quite sickening, and I had no sooner looked on her countenance before I found myself a mouse - and when I looked up again and beheld her visage I found that she was no longer smiling. (And yes, I admit that her darkened face and glowering eyes were more merciful by far than that sickly-sweet smile.)

"You were offered a gift, prick!" She screamed. "You don't reject a fucking gift - especially not from me! But since you had the gall to taint my good name and drag my honour through the dogshit of your oh-so-pious rejection, you will now be obliged to carry my curse into eternity. Live well, Mouse the Stupid Dumbfuck."

And that was the last time I saw Hyatonta-Ekninot-Mahtut before her journey into the realm of death.


T O N T A

In which a goddess is told to be nice, saves the animal kingdom, and actually fails at saving the animal kingdom



After she'd left the Pillar of Baknul-Who-Yet-Lives behind her Tonta got to observing the world. She walked for a long while, now whistling a tune and now humming to herself as the world disintegrated all around her. She noted the animals fleeing hither and thither, their souls screaming (in whispers, mind you) for her to save them. Tonta waved at the insufferable sods and walked right on by.

"Lady, what's your problem?" Tonta froze, frowned, and turned towards the voice. It was one of those souls, literally indistinguishable from any of the million others flowing to wherever they were flowing.

"You... you tawkin to me?" She drawled, turning more completely towards the featureless floating orb, "you tawkin to me? 'Cause I don't see nobody else round here..." she paused for a few tense moments, "who the fuck do you think you're tawkin to?"

"Well yeah, I'm talking to you. Do you see any other ladies round here?" The floating soul said.

"You make a good point fella," Tonta laughed, leaning on her stick as all tension suddenly dissipated, "you're pretty loud for a soul y'know, I could have sworn I told you all to shut the fuck up." The smile was gone from her face and her eyes were cold and hard.

"You wouldn't have heard me if you didn't want to hear me, lady. Now since you obviously want to hear from me, shall I ask you something? A small favour."

"Yeah, sure buddy. I have some time to kill." She fiddled with one of her nails absent-mindedly.

"You see all these here animals running hither and thither? Trying to escape death and hang on to life?" Tonta looked around and nodded at the soul's words. "Well, why don't you save them?"

Tonta pursed her lips and kissed her teeth, before releasing a sigh. "Oh, I don't know. I'm not really feeling that right now y'know? You get me? You feel me?"

"I get you I get you - but what if that doesn't matter right now, hmm? What if you just need to get over whatever it is you're feeling right now and doing what needs to be done?"

"Yeah, well, I don't know if that sort of thinking is for everybody. And who says this saving animals business needs to be done anyway? Look at them - one moment they're alive in that bag of flesh, and the next they're alive but like you. This death business is just a continuation of life by other means, they're just dumb shits who don't realise it. If they just accepted death without all this screaming then they get to keep living without any worries!"

"You know what, I don't even disagree with you." The soul said. "I'm all for dying - in fact, I look forward to whatever's coming next - but look, not everyone is ready for that, and it would be an act of kindness from you to save them and also an opportunity for you to teach them how to better accept death."

Tonta blinked. "Buddy, like, why the fuck would I teach them that? I have better things to do like. I dunno. Like walking and shit."

"Well, I think you'd actually enjoy being nice. You know, it would be an interesting experience." The soul suggested.

"Hmmmmmm," Tonta hummed, her brows furrowing in doubt, "you don't know me fella, I definitely wouldn't enjoy that."

The soul's response was swift. "Well, you won't know until you give it a shot! Plus, you want to leave a mark of your presence on the world no? A great and mighty goddess like you!"

"Goddess!? Me?" Her face contorted in surprise. "Seriously?" She smiled. "What does it mean though?"

"It means that you are the most powerful thing in the world, that's what it means my lady." The soul's words seemed to please Tonta immensely.

"Oh, but you do know how to flatter a lady, and you're quite wise for a featureless, boring blob. Okay then, let's give this saving business a shot then! Come on!" And with that, she grabbed the wise blob and went skipping a few steps before exploding into a hundred thousand bits of pollen that went flying across the breaking world.

She didn't quite know for how long she flew, but as she picked up more and more creatures crying out to be saved the hurricane of flying wildlife became rather hard to miss. I guess you know the world is coming to an end when you see a hurricane of flying wildlife.

Now at some point during that hurricane's existence, perhaps in the interlude between the destruction of Galbar and the coming of the Shard, Tonta managed to forget to keep all the different animals separate and intact, and so when she finally came to settle them down on the Shard she found that many of the creatures had rather unfortunately... agglutinated.

"Well, I guess you're cute." Tonta murmured as she rummaged through the strange creatures she had not quite managed to save. "Oh, you want to be called a grobin? I guess you're grabbin that name eh? Eh? Yeah, well, fuck you too you ugly fuck. Never liked you anyway." And so the little grobins made of the shard a home.

She reached into the tempestuous mess and- "Yowch! WHAT THE FUCK, LET GO LET GO YOU FUCKING MONSTER!" And so the cark, that strange melding of cat and shark, was flung into the world. More carefully Tonta reached once more into the living soup.

"You really messed up you know." The wise blob said for the hundredth time.

"Yeah, well, this was your idea fucktard. HeY tOnTa, wHy dOn'T yOu bE nIiCe?" She mocked as yet another strange creature emerged, a giant bipedal bird that did not look nice in the slightest.

"Now that's quite the terror bird." The wise blob intoned. And thus was the terror bird loosed upon the shard. "What was THAT a combination of?"

"Don't ask me, wiseguy." Tonta muttered as she pulled out the next creature from the soupy mess. "Ew. EW. EW EW EW EW! What the flying fuck, what the hell man, why?!" In her hands was some disgusting slug-deer.

"Well, it's cute... in its own way." The wise blob said. Tonta gave it a dirty glare as she released the slugdeer and got to peeling her skin off to cleanse it of the creature's slime. Once her skin had regenerated, she pulled out truly enormous camelid megafauna, which she dubbed the snow camel, and sent it to populate the cold southern shard. Next came a giant flying lizard creature, which asked to be named the flying axolotl and would make its home across the warmer climes of the shard. Then came gigantic moths, followed by long-horned bisons to join the snow camels in the south, followed by giant pangolins and markhors. The wise blob was pretty impressed, but Tonta looked into the soup and saw that it was far from finished and plopped onto her back.

"Argh, I'm tired, when will it be done?" She had no sooner said that when giant lizards clambered out of the soup and went lumbering onto the shard. "Hey, those look like that delicious drakhorey. Mmmm." Giant elks went in the wake of the lizards, and hellish pigs went screeching after the elk and caused them to scatter across the shard. After them emerged a confusing amalgamation of deer and eagle that asked to be called a peryton.

But the strangest were yet to come. When Tonta next reached into the soup her hands came up with white cloud-stuff, and for a few moments she thought the soup was done and that was all. But before her eyes the clouds began to move and gigantic cloud-whales swept up from the soup, followed closely by all sorts of cloudy incirrata. "What the fuck. What are they going to eat?!" Tonta muttered to herself, splashing her hand into the soup. The droplets immediately took flight after the skyborne behemoths in the form of enormous swarms of flying krill. Tonta looked on for what felt like hours as the swarm continued to leave the soup.

"You messed up big time." The wise blob informed her. She stopped looking at the swarm and fixed him with a death glare until the last of the swarm had gone. When she looked into the soup she found that not even that giant swarm had depleted it. She reached in and out came gigantic mussels, each easily the size of a boulder.

"What. The. Fuck." She intonated as she threw them at the shard. They landed in the north and were followed by equally large crabs that would feed on them. She looked into the soup again and paused. "I swear if anyone ever tells me to be nice again I'mma tear their head off." She glanced at the wise blob. "I'MMA TEAR THEIR HEAD OFF."

That was when the weird magic bees decided to buzz out of the soup.


T O N T A

In which a goddess shuts the world up, murders wantonly, and makes blood juice birds


A while later Tonta stopped screaming (if one listened closely they would have been able to make it out for a rage-infused "woooooooooooooooooooooooooow!"). The drakhorey had broken free and now soared in every direction to tear the risen underworlders limb from limb and to rain fiery death on human and monster alike.

They were fair like that.

There were exactly a thousand of them at that moment, but it would not be long before their number started to shrink. With each one Tonta devoured a great serpentine limb would grow from under the wraithlike yellow cloak that completely covered her nubile form. But at that very moment the whimsical quest to eat them all had not quite manifested to her - she was Drakhorey Mother, not yet Drakhorey Devourer - and she instead hung silently in the dying heavens. Or at least, she was silent. Everything else was fucking loud.

The source of the cacophony was not singular, but it was rather everywhere. The air was screeching, the smoke was bellowing, the earth was wailing ceaselessly as bits of it broke everywhere. The creatures too - monsters and animals and people alike, screaming ceaselessly and relentlessly and with impossible loudness. Some were horror-filled, others agonised, some were trying to draw her attention to one fact or another, others whispered in tempting tones of secrets hidden and waiting to reveal themselves if she only leant her ear. Tonta didn't give a flying peacock's left toe though - "would you all just shut
the

fuck

up!?"

It was very quiet after that. In fact, from that very moment and into perpetuity souls and all spiritual life-forms would only ever speak in hushed whispers. Tonta was surprised. And satisfied.

A spell seemed to break then and she was no longer frozen in the skies of her inception, but falling. Her collision with the earth was cushioned by the first drakhorey she would ever kill - a truly monstrous great pale thing. The collision left his upper half here and his lower body there and burning blood more or less everywhere. Feeling quite contrite about all the mess, and feeling that her first kill should in some way be memorialised, she heaved the great torso (it made little physical sense, like an ant throwing a lizard about) and skewered it on a stone pillar that erupted from the earth as if by its own will. Then the goddess stood back and beheld the gory sight. The drakhorey's soul stood by her and looked too. "But why?" He whispered, deeply flummoxed. She could tell because he was giving her one of those wtf faces.

"Oh! You're here!" She caught the drakhorey's soul and forcefully pushed it back into the abused and bisected form. Its hushed screams were almost comical. "Oh stop being dramatic Baknul Adech. It wouldn't be a cool monument if it didn't have your actual soul in it. Now," she gave the ensouled corpse a puppy-eyed look, "would you please turn to stone for me?"

He did.



The Pillar of Baknul-Who-Yet-Lives


Just for your knowledge: it was at that moment that Tonta thought it would be quite fun to hunt down the rest of her accidental children. She had not yet quite gained a reputation for devouring them, though in all truth she would not gain such a reputation until many decades stood between her and the first such devouring. As she walked by the bloody mess Baknul had thoughtlessly made while dying, the droplets drifted upward and congealed into two great fiery birds - a huge male who looked more like a flying firestorm than a bird and a considerably smaller and more sensibly birdlike female. They gave off a distinctively sonorous song that seemed to echo and ripple in all directions before beating their burning wings and lifting off into the sky. As Tonta continued to walk more of Baknul's blood rose up and congealed into those burning phoenixine forms and went singing in all directions.

She left the lower half of Baknul's bifurcated corpse behind her and when the goddess was gone from view the critters of the underworld crept out and approached to feast on the remains of one who had not so long ago feasted on them. Hear me now: well should this lesson be heeded! - (though it would be many years before Tonta would even think to consider such things) - that above every great and powerful being is one more powerful yet.


from
The Song of Giwabi


...

'Wherefore! Ah, wherefore!
Wherefore hast thou abandoned me?'
Cried the King Giwabi on the Field of Martyr's Doom.

Mighty in the fray
Oh that great Giwabi he was
Smote all that stood about him, for he was Martyrs' Doom!

Blood that day he reaped
Full russet bloomed the well-supped earth
For his spear scattered far all that blood of Martyr's Doom!

Thunderous were his strikes
In that fray a surge of lightning;
Was he man or was he god that pledged all Martyrs' Doom?

Tempest untiring
Cyclone of slaughter and chaos
Ceaseless in the onslaught as he doled out Martyr's Doom!

...
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