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The Lords of the Spice


Hoàng Bảo Tín walked slowly through the docks of the capital, all around him he could hear the sounds of bustling work, dock workers unloading ship cargo, captains yelling out orders, and merchants haggling prices, it was a sound he had come to know. His job? Well it was quite the important one, he inspected each box and bag of spice traveling to and from the capital, at least, in his jurisdiction, there were countless others like him, traveling up and down the docks and markets, making sure everything was up to code. Behind him followed his partner: Suratman, the small Gotran held in his hand a wet clay tablet, settled in a small tray for ease of carry, and he wielded a thin bone rod, used to write various pictures and lines to detail their findings.

Bảo Tín wore a fairly long flowing robe, as was customary of his people, the Reska, upon his head a long hood, and of course the mask he was given upon reaching 18 years of age, his bore an intricate design of the ocean, with his eye holes serving as a moon and sun looking down upon the waves positioned upon his mouth area. Suratman wore a similar regalia, his robes though were more shortcut and resembled a tunic more than anything, he too wore a mask, his instead bore a painted design that Tin had been informed was Gotran for “Meticulous”, a fitting description.

Tin and Suratman had been working together for quite some time now, and they both had learnt to hold a mutual respect for one another, relations between the Gotran and the Reska had long been tense ever since both races' surprise appearance upon the island they lived. Gotran craftyness had conflicted with the Reska’s sense of superiority. But after long years they both managed to work together, ultimately uniting to form the city of Sarapar, where the two inspection officers found themselves today.

The pair soon found themselves upon a familiar sight, a ship had recently docked and the crew had begun to unload their cargo, palettes with large bags sitting atop them, workers were extremely careful with the goods and Tin could see the symbol of the northern reaches upon them, spices.

“Greetings Kapten.” Tin spoke, walking up towards the captain of the ship, he was dressed fairly well off, jewelry was strewn about his body and his mask was painted in a bright shade of purple. Tin could already tell this would be interesting and he was sure Suratman could as well.

“Ah! Greetings inspector!” The captain drew his full attention upon the two, leaving his crew to do their work. “What do I owe the pleasure of your visit?”

“A routine inspection, nothing more, if you will allow me and my partner here a look at some of your goods, we’ll be out of your mask.” Tin could already see Suratman craning his head towards the bags full of spice, as befitting his mask he was incredibly meticulous, he made no show of hiding his goals to gain a promotion as a chief inspector, a rare sight for Gotran but something Tin would be happy seeing.

“Oh of course!” The captain gestured towards the bags, motioning for the crew carrying them to set it down. Reaching down he undid one of the robes holding a bag shut, revealing a mass of fine powder of a bright blue colouration. Blue Fire Pepper, known for its strange colouration but incredibly kick. “2 Sharins of Blue Fire Pepper and 3 Sharins of Nutmeg.” The captain declared.

Tin and Suratman quickly went to work, they would not inspect the entire ship and its contents, that would take quite some time, they just merely undid the ropes of bags and looked to confirm the ship was bringing what the captain had declared. Both inspectors would often sniff or taste the spices, ensuring they were their proposed spice, and to ensure a level of quality, the King had long implemented quality control, hoping to build Sarapar’s image as a hub of finely crafted merchant goods and great tasting spices.

After a few minutes their work was done, everything seemed to be in perfect order, sure, the measurements might be off but that was fine, one could not be blamed for a few Palins of spice. Suratman wrote down the symbols detailing the type of spice and where they were from, and the numbers of what had been brought, meanwhile Tin returned to the captain.

“Well, it seems everything is in order, here’s the token of quality.” He reached into a bag at the side of his hip, pulling out a small clay token with the symbol of the Sarapar crown upon it, used by captains and merchants to show their goods have the level of quality so desired by the King. He handed it to the captain, who inspected it before putting it into his pocket.

“Thank ye inspectors, may Artiafek bless your endeavors.” The captain spoke, performing a polite bow.

“And may Kalaru bless yours.” Tin replied, performing a similar bow alongside Suratman. The two departed, heading down the docks once more, keeping an eye out for any further inspections.

“Nearly 100 inspections,” Suratman spoke, he had an impeccable memory, and kept track of their progress, recounting every last detail to their superiors in his quest for a promotion. The Gotran looked up at his partner “Shall we make it a challenge to break it today?”

Tin chuckled “Regardless of my answer you’ll do it anyway.” He looked back at his partner, then towards the docks, where he spotted several ships having just landed “But, I think our luck just came to us.”

Suratman chuckled “Letz give them a vizit, shall we?”

“Lets”


Act Two, Scene Five: The First Hunt


He was hungry, gods he was so hungry.

He had been travelling through the forests for a while now, and the snow had begun to set in, it was only a matter of time before he was caught in the wilds, alone, and with no food. He had no tribe to come back to, he lived alone, his crops had failed and his hunting was poor, no wonder they didn’t want him anymore.

It was hopeless, he was going to die out here, with nothing to his name, and no one to mourn him.

He sank to his knees, his hastily constructed bow falling into the dirty snow, he cried out, begging anything, anyone to save him. But nothing came, there was only silence, it was over, not even the gods had come to save him.

Then, a branch snapped, his head was brought upward, and he saw it, a deer stood right in front of him, staring him down. His hand reached out, grabbing his bow once more, before his other one grabbed one of his shoddy stone arrows, he knocked the arrow into the bow, and fired. It went wide and the deer ran.

He was quick to follow, rising rapidly from the ground to chase after it through the dense forest, he took shot after shot, but again and again they went wide, barely even scraping the hide.

His lungs were burning, legs were beginning to give out, his arrows were running out, he just had to catch this deer, he was so damn hungry.

His fortune finally turned, the deer stumbled over roots hidden beneath the snow, he could hear the legs snap as they twisted and collapsed, this was his chance. He pulled out his stone knife and descended upon the deer, it kicked and bucked, but he stabbed and stabbed, blood gushed and flowed, his hands and face were showered in the cascade of red.

His hunger had grown too great, he didn’t even care about gathering the meat to cook, he just dug in, his hands and knife clawing away chunks of flesh before shoving them down his gullet, chewing and eating with a hunger he had never experienced before.

While he ate, the deer began to melt away, instead of a gutted animal, he began to eat from another hunter, their face plastered with an expression of fear and terror, guts spilling out from a large incision. He stopped, his own look of terror appearing upon his own face, he looked upon his hands, covered in the hunter’s blood. What. What had he done?

He slowly rose, he couldn’t return now, he definitely couldn’t return now, he had killed another Weike and...and eaten their flesh.

But it had tasted so good

He found himself drawn back to the corpse once more, he was still so hungry.

He shook his head, he couldn’t do this, what was he doing? This was, just wrong. What had driven him to do this?

His stone knife still sat in his hand, he gazed upon it, bringing it closer to himself. Grasping it with both hands, the blade pointing straight at his own chest. He thrust forward. But his own arms stopped, as if his bones could no longer move.

”Now now my dear little pet, you can’t just get out of this so easily.” A voice rang through his mind, echoing and jostling around his skull, his sight grew hazy and his thoughts cloudy ”How about you have another taste?”

The knife fell into the snow with a soft thunk, and he shot forward, his mind filled with an aching hunger, and he feasted.

As he feasted, as he shoved the flesh and guts into his mouth, he began to change. His body grew thin, becoming grey and pallid, his torso and legs grew taller and longer, stretching his height to nearly 8 feet, his hands became clawed as they dug into the guts, better ripping out the flesh, his feet became cloven hooves and unguligrade, his head grew long, becoming an elk like maw and snout with the skin ripping away, leaving only bare white bone, his eyes became predator like, and long elk horns erupted from his head, twisting and shaping as he feasted, finally his hair gave way, becoming dense grey fur that grew in haggard forms across his body. When it was done, he had had his fill of the hunter.

”Flesh….feast...eat” his voice had become haggard and monstrous. He looked around, he had been sated, but for how long?

”Now now my pet, flesh will come when it comes, for now, I have something else to give you.”

A nearby branch of a tree snapped off suddenly, its twisted form becoming even more twisted and thinner, suddenly, from its top came a metal blade, long and curved, scythe like, it was rusted and as haggard as its long handle. He felt drawn to it, slowly picking it up.

”Hunt...yes...hunt.” his mind was racing, but it had finally begun to calm down, a new purpose in mind.

”Very good my pet, now, I shall leave you for now, but know, if you are injured, you need only eat enough flesh, and that blade, for every person you strike, it shall bring disease to their life.”

He had little time to think on this before sounds drew his attention, voices, calling out a name, those of his former people. He felt the drive of the hunt once more, this, this he could get used to.




Act Two, Scene Four: The Pit of Yamashin


Yamat walked through his prison, its winds wiping up the dirt and ash, he had another plan for his beautiful play, he just needed the right place.

He came upon a wide open area of the wastes, surrounded on all sides by the grey fractured mountains that dotted the desert, shielding it mostly from the piercing winds but not from the black sun ever present in the sky and with nary a ruin or bone pile in sight, perfect for his little idea.

He began by drawing a circle in the dirt, a massive one, encompassing the entirety of the open area, a deep gouge into the ashen dust of his realm. It was nearly a mile wide and a mile long, it would be enough for his plan.

He stood at one end of the pit, raising his hands, his runic skin glowing once more. In an instant the dust inside the circle vanished within seconds, forming a deep, deep, deep, pit, so deep that one could not see its bottom, even Yamat had to admit he himself did not know how deep it was, but that did not matter, what mattered is what would be put inside.

Yamat continued conducting, and the pit began to fill. A thick black sludge began to fill the pit from the bottom up, eventually coming just to the edge of the top where it seemed to bubble and shift as if alive, then it began to grow red eyes, thousands upon thousands of them, blinking at random iterations and darting about taking in their newfound existence. The sludge now existed as a being, tentacles covered in red eyes formed and sloshed about, grasping the edge of the pit or waving in the air.

The sludge was alive, not in a traditional way though, it was not some singular being, that would be, far too much effort for the god, instead, the sludge was made up of thousands and thousands of tiny, tiny, little organisms, by themselves these organism were practically useless and completely innoticable, but if enough gathered they could form themselves an autonomous colony that acted like its own singular being.

Yamat had no name for them currently, he instead figured he would allow the mortals to name when the time came, of course, he needed to give mortals the ability to summon forth his newest creations, he once more raised his glowing runic arms, conducting a gift for the mortals down upon Galbar.




Two servants, one in Toraan, one in Kubrajzar, going about their duties, unaware of both each other and of the great machinations of the gods far beyond their perception.

Suddenly, they gained a vision, images being branded into their mind and whispers detailing the actions. It was a ritual, one to summon portions of the sludge of the great pit, A bowl of water, some blood, a simple spell, from that would come the beings who could be used as devoted servants, so long as they were fed some mana.

The two servants were not the only ones amongst the two continents to get the visions, but they were amongst the select few chosen to know how to summon what would come to be known as “Demons” first, the technique would expand of course, but it would have to take its time.

Tales would emerge regardless, those with magic accompanied by strange creatures, black goo-like bodies and oftentimes countless red eyes, some taking shapes similar to other beings, other times being strange and entirely unique. Demonmancers became a strange yet known sight across the two continents, they were still rare, but the sight of one would leave an everlasting impression to many, the sight of the strange creatures rarely left their memories.




Yamat was pleased with his new children, they were already leaving their mark upon Galbar, while they were not the most direct of his creations in regards to the great play, he was sure they would play their part soon enough, he just had to make sure to check on the pit every now and then.

For now though, his mind turned elsewhere, his mind ever racing and filled with countless ideas, he had another great idea, he just needed the perfect candidate, for now he paced once more across his endless plane, his great play ever being worked upon, the playmaker’s work never finished.




Truth and Tragedy


The god of Tragedy was once more on the move, he had a tendency to wander aimlessly when he wished for ideas to come to him. He had found himself once more in that great meeting place of the gods, he could see the various portals of all the gods, he recognized some, knew of others, and there were still some he had yet to meet, but yet, he didn’t quite feel like meeting those who he saw, none of them, popped out to the playwright.

Of course, this always changed, and changed it did when he found one portal, he found it, enticing, its surface seemed to reflect like a mirror, oh this could be interesting. Only problem, he had no clue of how to pass into it, or if the god within even wished for visitors.

He slowly walked up to the reflective pane, his curiosity driving him ever forward, that was when he noticed the, being? If one could call it that, in the reflection, it was strange looking, silvery and reflective much like the mirror it was in, yet it possessed wicked claws and sharp horns, Yamat took a liking to it quickly.

”Greetings.” He spoke to the mirror, not caring how weird it may make him look ”Are you the guardian of this gate?”

The wicked thing of glass and claws trapped behind the reflective surface of Fìrinn’s portal took an equal interest in the God of Tragedy. It pressed the tips of those claws into what seemed to be the surface of the mirror, trailing them down it in careful and measured strokes, before flourishing with a bow as if to reciprocate the greeting. Though it lacked a face the sparkle of silver and golden lights across its form gave the distinct impression of thought and careful scrutiny, and after a moment of this eerily still prognostication it stepped to the side, gesturing inwards with its claws, and exiting stage left (as one might say).

The mirror retained some of the unnatural sheen from the lights that had danced across it, and somehow seemed to be more alive, more solid--and clearly, given that it was a portal, ready to be entered.

Yamat’s curiosity was most certainly peaked, and befitting of it, he pushed forward, entering into the portal. He entered into a long hallway, reflective mirror like surfaces surrounded him on all sides, in each one he could see the scenes of tragedy and suffering, even those not of his handiwork, which was surprising to say the least. He could see the massacre of Solaria by his Iskrill, the troll wars between human and troll, the destruction of a far off moon full of insects, plagues and famines, war, conflict, death, the lowest points of mortalkind for what seemed like ages.

Yamat himself took each one in, often criticizing the scenes under his breath, pointing out their flaws if they were not his make, or how he could do better if they were, yet his curiosity for the realm itself had never diminished, what kind of god lived in a realm like this? He just had to know. Yet, he could see no other god, he looked at every reflection, trying to find any outliers, until his gaze was drawn downward, where his reflection was, instead there stood another being, they seemed to walk upon water, dressed in beautiful clothing and lacking a face much like the guardian outside, Yamat believed he had found the god.

”Why, hello there.” he bent down a bit, trying to get himself a bit closer of a look at the god, ”You must be the god of this realm, I, am Yamat” He bowed as he always does, though this one felt more awkward due to their positioning.

”Ah, yes--the playwright. Greetings. I am Fìrinn, God of Truth. It is curious that you happen to stumble upon my realm now, of all times, when tragedies are being composed all ‘cross the worlds.”

Fìrinn did not speak, as such, but the meaning of its words and thoughts were impressed upon Yamat’s consciousness in a brief moment of what could only be described as intense lucidity--the sensation of epiphany, and opening one’s eyes to a greater truth than could have been perceived before. Then, as quickly as it had struck, it was gone--and only the echoes of those words remained within his essence. It was a cold, and almost clinical experience, completely devoid of the emotion so common in mortalkind and in the other deities--but in the absence of that emotive component was a deep sense of understanding that proved to be quite uncommon.

It looked up at the God of Tragedy from beneath its glassine perch and appeared to vanish, before re-emerging within one of the infinite panels of mirrors lining the hall and now seeming to walk alongside Yamat instead of beneath him.

”I have watched your handiwork from afar. You have brought tragic, cruel endings to many mortals--and in so doing, have altered their Truths irrevocably. Many might chide you for what is ostensibly an evil thing, but without tragedy there is no joy. All must be balanced ‘fore the scales of Truth, and to give new perspective and purpose is a goal of the highest order--it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance.”

Fìrinn reached its mantle-claws out, passing through the mirrors as if they did not exist, and touching upon a particular image in the Hall of a Thousand Mirrors. It seemed to grasp the immaterial essence of that scene and tear it apart, suffusing the realm with the memories and feelings contained therein, and all of a sudden the argent glare of mirrors was gone, replaced by an immersive view of that scene. It depicted Acadia and the Iskrill, waging a bloody war against one another. Scenes of brutality and tragedy flitted through the air and lodged themselves within the God of Tragedy’s mind, replaying them from the perspective of those who had directly experienced them. A pair of lovers, back-to-back, surrounded by a mountain of half-chewed bones and shredded viscera wielding sorcery and sword against the almost-inhuman horrors closing in upon them. Their last moments together, one tragically falling in battle, and the primal agony and horror of losing one’s love before succumbing to the cold embrace of death. Then, the scene was over, and Fìrinn stood in front of Yamat.

”There is an artistry to these scenes, cruel as they are. Many of our kith and kin have no great love of cruelty, and I cannot say that I am cruel myself--but nor am I merciful, and nor do I judge those who act in accordance with their nature.”

”Well, you are most certainly one of the few, I am always glad to meet another who can respect my great works, to me they are very important, as you’ve said, without tragedy one can not know true joy.” Yamat looked all across the scenes and mirrors once more, before once more turning to Fìrinn ”So you are the god of truth? Must be quite the work to maintain something like that.”

”It is…” Fìrinn paused, taking a moment to compose itself, before resuming.

”No more difficult to me than creating Tragedy is to you. It is a function of my existence, and one that I am happy to do. It does, however, require much of me in the way of focus--so perhaps you are right. It does require much to maintain. Still, the rewards of my maintenance are there for all to feel--when one’s lover meets a tragic end, it is the Subtle Weave that allows their partner to sense that distant tragedy and feel its pain keenly within their mind. This is a fact that you are no doubt appreciative of.”

Fìrinn did not quite smile, but lights danced across and through its body to suggest a sense of mirth and amusement--a happiness, perhaps, in the fulfilment of its and another’s Truth. A sense of completion.

”Now that we are introduced, is there anything in particular I may help you with?”

Yamat chuckled at both the god’s question and his answer to his”hmm, that is quite the question, I tend to just find myself with other gods and the plans form as we talk. Perhaps, you may be able to help me, have you heard of the Reshut in your watching of Galbar?”

Fìrinn nodded--or, at least, gave the impression of nodding.

”I see all that every mortal sees. Within this realm is contained all sights, all thoughts, all feelings--all that mortalkind perceives, all that they are, is within my demesne. I am familiar, yes.”

”Then i am sure you know they are quite important to me, as i am to them, but i must admit that i have not been as focused on them as i should be, so, i was perhaps thinking you may be able to aid them, give them a bit more of an edge compared to the continental races, of course in exchange, i am more than willing to aid you in anything.”

Fìrinn took yet another pause to mull over what it was that Yamat had said, its mantle gently tapping the tips of its claws against one another. Each beat of the impromptu rhythm caused new images to flood the mirrors lining the God of Truth’s realm before quickly being replaced by another, as if they were directing their attention to a river of images flooding by and perusing them at great speed. The only consistent theme among them, it seemed, was the Reshut--various individuals, various points in time, all coming together as Fìrinn mused upon their nature and what it would require to, as Yamat had said, aid them. Then, breaking that moment of silence, was a peal of gentle laughter.

”Hah. Is this how the other gods barter their divinity? An exchange of bartering, one expenditure of our divine power for another? Very curious indeed. I do not require anything of you to help the Reshut fulfil their Truths, Yamat--it is my design and my purpose. It is my sole motivation to align the Truth of all beings with their respective realities, and to safeguard that grand design from destruction. It is my purpose to remember all that has happened, so that the future might move towards its goals, even as those goals shift and change around us. I am happy to help you, without witness, without hope, without reward. You need not reciprocate, only do as your Truth demands of you.”

Fìrinn began to pluck individual images from the ether with its mantle-claws and true hands both, an aureate hue enveloping its form as it summoned forth its power to influence Galbar and the Reshut.

”Ah. The three clans, each ruling their own little spits of land without concern for the greater whole. With unity, they could be greater than the sum of their parts. They value privacy, and others shun them for their perceived lack of openness--this I can remedy, and keep their Truths intact. Through the Collective Unconscious, all mortals are linked to one another. Most remain closed to the possibilities and existence of this fact, unaware that within the depths of their minds lurks a spark which may be ignited if it is nurtured and cared for--and they might use it to divine and transmit meaning without the physical tells that mortals so often rely upon. Is this agreeable to you?”

Yamat thought to himself for a second, he knew his children did value their privacy, to be able to do what Fìrinn had offered would be a great boon to them, they could still function while retaining their beliefs. He nodded to the god of truth ”I can agree to that yes, they would most certainly appreciate that.”

”Consider it done. Is there aught else I might do for them?”

The reply was simple and swift, as while the meaning of what it had said made its way to Yamat the God of Truth was busy at work. It would not deign to make an anchor near the Reshut, for they had obstinately refused to worship any but their creator. Worship, Fìrinn had found, was not a necessary component for it to succeed in its task--mortalkind often entreated its aid without meaning to, through meditation and thought, through the Worldsong, or through the Endless Dream--those druids who had dedicated themselves to Fìrinn had helped anchor the God ofTruth as one friendly to mortals, at least in the periphery, and the nature of the Collective Unconscious was such that those sorts of ideas tended to compound upon themselves.

”I am not sure what, precisely, you had in mind for the Reshut--or if you gave thought to their eventual purpose at all. Mortalkind often finds a way to create its own purpose, I have found. What is it, precisely, you wish for them to accomplish--other than parity with the other civilisations?”

”I have given them thought, as of the plan for them right now, i merely wish for those three clans to gain some more power, eventually i wish for them to unite under one of them, and of course for them to survive, they will surely play importance in the great play, at least, if i have anything to say about it.”

”Perhaps, then, an awakening of a boon that might display their innate talents and proclivities? I see that the Kinoshita fancy themselves architects, and worship you with particular fervor… For them, I could offer a fragment of my influence over memory--a means by which their grand designs and rituals might always be remembered, even in the face of untimely demise? The Hashimoto swear by the way of the blade--perhaps, then, they might use the Collective Unconscious to divine the moments and intentions of their opponents in combat that their aim be more true and their dodges more swift? As for the Ohta, perhaps they would benefit from access to the panoply of magics I offer my druids and those awakened in the Collective Unconscious? They could use the Great Weave to determine the desires of those interested in business, to avoid duplicitous dealings, and to scry for particular objects that they or their clients might desire? All these are simple enough, and will allow for the Reshut to thrive as the upcoming centuries turn.”

Yamat nodded once more ”Yes, that would be more than perfect, each clan more attuned to its chosen path, that will be more than perfect for their place amongst the great play. I must thank you Fìrinn, many are not so willing to aid a god such as myself without some sort of deal.”

”Many,” the God of Truth began, sweeping its mantle-claws through the air and grazing against the mirrors as its true arms pressed against them and the divine power that would influence the Reshut flowed through them and into Galbar proper.

”Are too insularly self-involved to see that there is more to our existence and purpose than ourselves. It is interesting that you should use the word ‘perfect’, however, as there is one word of warning I will give to thee: The so-called Lord of Perfection is not to be trusted. See for yourself, and decide where it fits in your Truth.”

With that, the God of Truth called to the forefront another recollection of memory--Cadien’s interaction with Aicheil, the feeling of horror (and a grim reminder of the scream of madness and rage he would no doubt have felt), and the maelstrom of emotion in which he had enveloped Fìrinn itself in. All of these events, the feelings, the thoughts--Yamat’s to understand and to cherish, exactly as the Two-as-One had perceived them. When it ended, Fìrinn was gone once again--returned to its initial position as Yamat’s reflection.

”I will guide you out of my realm, if there is nothing else you wish to discuss?”

”Yes, i have heard of him, i will keep my eye out for him, and i do not believe i have anything else to discuss, of course if you desire anything, my realm is always open.”




Entr’Acte: The Tide of Blood





Blood. Flesh. Bone. Feast. Food. Hunt. Hunt. Hunt.

The hunger drove them to hunt, to feed upon flesh, their minds had become warped and broken, long forgetting their origins as the very beings they now descended upon to sate their eternal hunger. They had become a scourge upon the northern highlands, entire villages would fall silent after their hunts, blood soaked tents and ravaged corpses were often found by the druids who dared to travel the northern reaches and far too often those druids failed to return, another feast for the flesh hungry abominations.

They were the Iskrill, though that was a name only they would use for themselves, the humans they hunted often referred to them as the Scourge, Abominations, Beasts, the like, even the trolls knew to hide when the call of the Iskrill hunt sounded in the distance. They were feared amongst the north, and even the south knew of their hunts, they were at their height.

Then the damn walls came, the spears, the metal, the humans had learned to fight back, the hunters, became the hunted.

A city arose, it dedicated itself to fighting the scourge, the Iskrill were unprepared and were shattered, their stranglehold upon the north had fallen and they were forced to split. The eastern broods fled into the twisted forests of the Aberrant, a region the Iskrill found themselves perfectly at home in, sending hunts into the highlands, testing the city. The western broods had little to flee to, until they found another city, a shining beacon devoted to a false goddess of the sun. A fest waiting for them.

The Iskrill had been beaten, but they refused to go, they were a parasite upon the north, and they would feed until there was nothing left.

The Beast and the Wasp


Serkox and his pack had been following the beast for a while, a mighty giant moose that could feed their brood for quite some time, they were drawing close through the mangled trees and brush to it, he could almost taste its flesh upon his tongue, the thrill of the hunt’s best part was drawing close, the killing of their prey and getting the first feasting of its flesh.

The 5 hunters stalked quietly through the brush, their weapons, some javelins and axes drawn, their claws and teeth could be used in case they broke, but that would make things, far more difficult. They followed the beast’s scent, drawing ever closer, that is when they heard it. Echoing through the forest they could hear the cries of the moose, Serkox could begin to sense something else in the distance, it was not anything he had come to know as native to these woods like a wolf-bear, they were different, this couldn’t be good.

He gestured towards his pack, ordering them to move quicker alongside him, their pace quickened, eager to drive back this new scent and gain their feast. They found themselves in a small clearing, a giant moose fallen to its side, already smelling of death, then, there were the creatures, they were strange, like nothing the hunter had ever seen before, they were human like but insectile, red and brown striped with large stinger like body parts, hovering on fast buzzing wings, they wielded weapons similar in make to the hunter’s own, it was clear they have lived in these woods as well and had too hunted down this giant moose.

There were three, an easy number to take down, but near them Serkox could see smaller insect looking creatures, they were similar in design yet smaller, and more bestial looking, he counted five. Fuck. This could be difficult.

He gestured for his men to ready their javelins, he still had the element of surprise which could prove useful. He cocked his arm back, javelin at the ready, aiming it towards one of the larger creatures. With a soft prayer to the All Father he chucked it with all his might, as did his pack members.

A few struck true, two piercing right through the smaller creatures, and Serkox’s flying right into the larger one’s chest, bringing it crashing down, it's wings sputtering with last gasps of its life. The remaining creatures turned towards their direction, their wings buzzing angrily and weapons now drawn and at the ready. The hunt’s best part had begun.

The hunters drew their axes and charged towards the creatures, Serkox crashed against one of the larger creatures, its own spear-like blade and stinger clashing against his axe and claws, each one slashing and stabbing at the other, seeking an opening. A battle began around them as well, the two larger creatures proving themselves the match of the hunters, the smaller ones though buzzed and dashed around the hunters, being far more of a nuisance, though the occasional axe, claw, or stinger struck true, causing the hunters to howl in pain or the creatures to buzz louder.

It was bloody, Serkox caught the creature in its leg with his axe, blood spurted out from the wound as the creature loudly buzzed, with a sickening crunch he dug the weapon head deeper, grabbing the bottom with his extra bottom arm, and he pulled with all his might.

The creature screamed, and the sound of tearing exoskeleton only barely covered it, the leg tore at the wound point, muscles stretching far beyond their limit with a wave of bright green blood pouring forth. A final snap echoed through the clearing as the leg ripped, Serkox held it aloft, the creature crashing into the ground from the pain, he twirled his axe around before finally embedding it into its skull, ending its life.

The other hunters had managed to dispatch their creatures, two were heavily injured from the smaller creatures though, the stings apparently contained some poison. Serkox doubted they would live much longer. They needed to get as much feast as they could.

“Gather as much as you can.” The hunter growled at his pack members. They moved as quickly as they could with their injuries, gathering enough flesh for their brood, before slowly returning home. The two stung would soon pass.

This would not be the only encounter with the insects, both beast and wasp would clash time and time again, fighting over the same hunting grounds, predator versus predator, the Iskrill’s savagery clashing against the Swarm’s sheer numbers, hive against brood, a war that for whoever won, humanity would only lose.

The Fallen Sun

Ykkat walked through the bloody and ruined streets, charred and broken buildings surrounding her, now home to her fellow brood mates, feasting softly upon any sort of flesh they could gather, be it human or animal. They had come to this city long ago, descended upon its inhabitants and slaughtered them, eaten them as a glorious feast, by the All Father if only Ykkat had been there for that.

Now they had come to live in the city, hunting whenever they could, they had to gather a lot to feed the numbers they held, which proved difficult with the anarchic nature of the broods, each one vying for more and more flesh to sate their endless hunger. Even in the past they had been like this, and now, even after having claimed the ruins of a mighty city, they were still behind their enemies, especially that of their hated rival beyond the mountains and the river.

Ykkat knew this needed to change, they would not last long if their prey sought to fight them in force, they grew more and more powerful each day, while they stagnated.

She came upon the home of one of her companions, Zerkam, a strange Iskrill who was born with rainbow eyes and had strange powers, many called him blessed by the All Father but few ever interacted with him, afraid of his power. They were fools.

She entered, finding the Iskrill sitting on his cot and staring at one of his arms, a soft flame glowing in his palm, as soon as he spotted her he seemingly snuffed it out, rising to greet her.

”Greetings Ykkat, what do I owe the pleasure of your visit?”

”I wished to talk to you about some things, but I see you were busy doing something.” The flame had been an improvement, as the Iskrill had little knowledge or control over his powers, he was learning, this was good.

He looked upon his arm, the one that had held the flame ”Yes, I was just learning more about my powers, it is difficult, a bunch of trial and error mostly, but enough of that.” He turned back towards his cot, gesturing for Ykkat to follow him ”What did you wish to talk about?”

The two Iskrill sat, Zerkam looked ever curious as to her visit, they were not that often admittingly, but he enjoyed them nonetheless. He offered Ykkat a piece of flesh, which she ate slowly, thinking of her words.

”Well Zerkam, I wished to speak to you about something, it's about our people here. As you know, we are rather divided, we fight amongst ourselves even as we are hunted down by our own prey, it needs to change.” This was the first time she had ever voiced her opinions, and she could see his reaction to her words, his eyes widened, unsure of how to respond.

”So you’re, wanting to unite the Broods? All of them within this city?”

”When you say it like that yes it does seem daunting, but we can do it brood by brood, start with ours, organize ourselves, make sure we can fight back against our rivals. Then we can go to the next brood, if they see the benefits it’ll get easier with each brood.” She had put a great deal of thought into this, she had no desire to see her people destroyed by their prey, the prey was meant to be hunted, not the predators.
Zerkam sighed ”You’re obviously going to do this with or without my help so I might as well.”

”Perfect! Since you’re chosen by the All Father they should listen to you more, now, lets see if we can’t help your powers some more.”

The two talked, trying to learn more about the strange Iskrill’s powers and Ykkat’s plan to unite the broods so the hunt may continue, their plane would need some help, they both knew that, but they wouldn’t quite expect the help they would get.

A watching father


Yamat had watched his children with increasingly curious eyes, while he himself admitted that the Iskrill were not his best works, they were more than proving themselves as worthy of their father’s aid. And that aid he would give them.

That blasted city had split them in two, now his eastern children were engaged in a war with those wasps and the western ones were seemingly sitting, waiting for their deaths, he needed to give them a boost.

But what could it be? He thought to himself a great deal, that one Iskrill within the fallen city would have to gain some other aid, he could not make a ruler that was for sure, but he could assist his children in another way. Those wasps, while enemies of his children, were interesting too, perhaps those who had proven themselves in the Aberrant could be helped as well? It would make the play far more interesting.

It was decided, he would bless his children, and the wasps of the north, now exactly what would he give them? They needed some sort of ability to counteract the organization of the humans, hmmmm, ah ha! That would do just fine.

He raised his hands, his runes glowing their beautiful gold, and he conducted his blessing. To the Iskrill and the Vespians he would give the gift of mutations, each one could force upon themselves mutations, only physical ones though, wings, limbs, claws, acidic spit, anything they could think of, they could gain it. Though of course, even Yamat could not just give them a straight blessing, instead he made it random, the Iskrill would have to wait a week before the mutation was fully complete and the result was random as to what they would get, but their thoughts would influence the range and they could still operate, with the Vespians he opted to give them more powerful mutations and a bit more control, but at the cost of having to live within one of their cocoons, unable to work, that would be a fine balance.

He would give the groups a slight nudge as to their new abilities, perhaps a few new mutations at some inopportune times? Yes, that would sate him until his other plans were needed. Speaking of which, he turned his attention once more to his avatar, he had a package to retrieve.




Martial in the Marshes, feat: Twilight and the Reshut


Twilight had had to conjure forth a second bag for all the red masks he had been collecting off of those pesky bandits. Seeing as they had pounced on him every time, he had never gotten the opportunity to brandish his shield properly - it was cumbersome to pull off his back, and unsheathing his sword went much faster when he had one hand to stabilise the sheath. He was starting to develop a proper technique, too, for fracturing skulls or breaking necks whenever his blade was uselessly dull - which was pretty much whenever. A groan escaped him as he ran his eyes fixed on the grip on his hips - it was so beautifully crafted! If only it wasn’t linked to the most useless weapon on planet Galbar!

A presence kicked at his brain. ”You’re the absolute worst, do you know that?!”

Twilight groaned and shuffled the bags of mask into a more comfortable position on his back. ”What do you want, Blue?”

”How could you do such a thing? Openly calling me useless and, and, and whiney! In front of her? The snorting sound of a blowing nose burned at his ear drums.

”She was being helpful and respectful towards me. You should give it a try, y’know.”

”Twilight, by my power as a goddess--”

”Sorry, what’s that? Connection’s breaking up.”

”H-hey, don’t ignore me!”

”Oh nooooo, I’m losing yooouuu. Boop.” The avatar shut his mouth and kept walking. From the other side, he heard:

”Twilight? Twilight?! You can’t shut me out! I am your goddess! Your -only- goddess! Do you hear me?! THE ONLY ONE!” There was a pause. ”Why are you ignoring me?” Another pause. ”Heeeey… Heeeeeeeeeeeeeey?” A sniff. ”The mind link is still active - how are you not responding? Don’t tell me--! Did Neiya give you something to shut me out?!” Twilight, meanwhile, came across something he had not expected: A road, next to which hung a yellow banner with a grand sigil. ”Answer me! Why are you like this? What did I ever do to deserve this kind of treatment, huh? Are you -still- going on about those two thousand years of sleep? Is that it? Are you really so callous and cold that you’d choose Neiya over me for something like that? Twilight eyed some lights in the distance - a settlement of sorts. ”I’m sorry, okay? Is that what you wanna hear? Have I not said that already? Fine, I’ll say it again either way: I’m sorry I kidnapped you from your home and put you to sleep for two thousand years. I -only- made you immortal and part god for your troubles, but uh-nuuuh, Gibbie made you sleep forever! You know what, fine! Run away with Neiya if you want!” Another pause. ”What do you see in her anyway? Is she -anything- else but nice hair, a pretty face and a pair of big… I mean, do you even know her? You know she’s crazy, right? Off her bloody rocker mental, you know that? You know what they say - don’t stick your, uh--... I mean, did I even tell you what she did to me? Do you wanna hear that, huh? Oh, you better prepare the waterworks, son, ‘cuz this story’s not for the faint of heart. You ready? Here goes! I’m gonna tell it!” There was a pause, longer than the ones before. Twilight was standing in front of a large gate, flanked by palisade walls. The silence was interrupted by a series of sniffs and sobs. ”H-hey, Twilight? Don’t leave meee… I’m sorry for what I said, it’s just--... I don’t wanna lose you, and--”

”Blue, would you shut up for a second? I think I heard something,” replied Twilight and looked around.

”SO YOU WERE IGNORING ME!”

”Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever - can it for a bit, would you?”

Silence lingered on the area, the sounds of insects buzzing and various frog croaks. Twilight kept still, eyeing the area. With a sudden flash, a figure had emerged from the brush, and a blade right on his neck, threatening to cut him in ways he really didn’t want to be cut.

“Who are you? What do you want?” The figure spoke, moving his eyes, Twilight could see 3 other masked figures emerged, their masks weren’t red like the bandits, instead they all had various designs of yellow, much the banner he had seen before and each one wielded a spear or sword of somet type.

”Woah, woah, woah, heeeeey! Hey, I’m not here for trouble! Just your average human passing through - wait, shoot, right, you don’t know what humans are, do you?” He had raised his hands in the air, and was thumbing one of them down at the two sacks swung over his back. ”If you’d let me reach into my bags, I could find my, uh, mask!”

The figure pressed his blade further into Twilight’s skin, “You are an outsider that we know, you have no mask, now answer me, what do you want?” The figure gestured for the three others to draw closer, their weapons at the ready.

”As I said - just passing through. Now, if you’d just lower your weapons and-- HAH!” With lightning quick reflexes worthy of a godspawn, Twilight ducked down and, with a movement smoother than warm butter, he affixed his shield to his arm and brought it upwards. ”LET’S SEE YOU FIGHT THIS - THE WORK OF A GOD!”

The shield immediately shattered upon touching the warrior’s blade, its pieces trickling down on the ground. Twilight eyed it in a bepuzzled manner. ”Wah?” On the other side of the mind link, he heard a mocking laughter.

The figure only looked down at the now shattered shield, then back to Twilight. Before just socking him in the face, sending him falling onto the floor. “Grab his weapons items,” He ordered the other three, “Bring him to the Daimyo, he’ll be interested in them.” The three Reshut quickly grabbed the bags and blade off of Twilight, before roughly forcing him upwards and dragging him past the gates into the city.

Being dragged through swampy roads was not really the best of times and the guards didn’t really seem to care about their now prisoner. While the muck accumulated itself on his legs and lower half, Twilight could see Reshut staring at him from their wooden houses or from the sides of the street, always looking away when he tried to make eye contact, or even shooing their non-masked children inside.

Eventually, after what felt like ages of being dragged through the roads, they finally came upon a fairly large building situated near the center of the city, it was a far larger building then the rest, built with an intricate design and sloped triangle like roofs. The Reshut dragged him up the steps and into the large building.

What Twilight saw was rather impressive, they had entered a large room with a beautiful array of art lining its walls, a large carpet laid upon the ground, and at the far edge stood a slightly raised pedestal, upon which a finally dressed Reshut with an intricate yellow mask sat kneeling.

The guards bowed, and one spoke “Lord Hashimoto, this outsider was found outside the gates and attempted to attack us.” They roughly tossed Twilight to the ground in front of the Lord, who stared at him with piercing green eyes.

“And what is your name interloper?” The lord asked.

Twilight was tossed onto his knees and cast a stinky-eyed look at his captors. ”... Nice to see some people haven’t changed… I’m no interloper, man! I’m--!”

One of the guards punched him upside the head once more, “Silence outsider! you will answer the Lord’s question without delay!” The lord raised one hand, calming the guard and allowing Twilight to speak once more. The avatar took a moment to snort up the line of blood running down over his lip and nodded.

”I’m, uh… Twilight, sir.”

The lord nodded, taking in the name “And tell me Twilight, why are you here in our lands? you have surely come a long way from your home.”

Twilight took a moment to survey the room. The lord’s guard was large and jumpy. Not a good sign. ”I, uh… I swam - from the west. I’m heading east in search of a lady.”

The lord uttered a hearty laugh “A lady huh? She must be a pretty find if you’re willing to swim across the entire ocean to find her, so what brought you to our city then?”

Twilight made narrow eyes and cast a sideways glance at his guard. ”Well, uh, it, it was on the way… I’m pretty much just looking for the eastern shore at this point.”

“I see,” The lord sat there, thinking for a brief moment “And why, did you attack my guards then?”

The avatar’s eyes focused on the floor mats. ”I, uh… I’m in a bit of a hurry, see. I was afraid this, uh, this exact thing would happen.” He suddenly looked as though a bright idea had kicked him up the nose and relieved him of a few teeth. ”Hey, sir!” He eyed the guard’s sharp glare. ”My lord, I mean - how would you like a boon for you and your people?”

“A boon you say?” The lord leaned forward, bringing himself closer to the avatar “And how would someone like you be able to give my people a boon?”

Twilight put on a smirk. ”Huhuhuhuh. I wasn’t expecting to reveal myself this soon; however, it seems that it can’t be helped.” He paused for dramatic effect. ”For you see! While you may have thought you captured a simple human, it was actually me - Twilight - the Vagabond of the Moon, and avatar of Gibbou!” He tried his best to pose heroically with his hands bound behind his back.

The lord tilted his head in a confused manner “And who is Gibbou? We have heard of no such being before.”

Twilight scoffed. ”G-Gibbou? The moon goddess? The blue girl who sits on the shiny thing in the night sky?”

”Hihihihi. Having issues, Twi? Need some help, Twi?” Gibbou’s snickers carved at the insides of his skull.

”Shut up, you stupid blueberry!”

Suddenly the wind was knocked out of him from a swift kick from one of the guards. The lord swiftly raised his hand, ordering the guard back. “We have no knowledge of a goddess like that,” the lord spoke “The god of the moon is Kalaru, lord of the depths.”

The avatar gave a harsh cough as he regained his posture. ”S-so… That’s how you know her, huh…” He pointed a finger at the lord. ”Well, you can forget about that interpretation! The moon goddess is the whiniest, bitchiest, sappiest piece of--!”

Another kick came towards his chest, sending him doubling over, the lord this didn’t wave his guard back, only leaning forward towards the avatar “I would choose your words incredibly carefully interloper, you are beginning to grow on thin foundation.”

”No, no, kick him again! Kick him again!” There came a crunch of biscuits across the mind link. Twilight felt his nose sting with despair in addition to the fractured cartilage.

”Okay… I see I have no choice. Please, my lord! Allow me to prove my divinity!” shouted Twilight, his bloody and beaten face surprisingly determined in its expression.

The lord leaned back, eyeing the avatar, “and how exactly do you plan on doing that?” the guard next to the avatar readied himself for another kick, just in case.

”Name one wish, and by Tekret, I swear I will grant it.” Twilight furrowed his brows with even greater determination.

The lord paused, musing over the idea, “Very well Twilight, i shall name a wish, and, if it is not granted, we shall offer you up as a sacrifice for Kalaru, tying you to a stone and sending you to the depths.” he leaned forward, mere inches away from the avatar “Deal?”

Twilight nodded firmly.”Deal! Deal!”

“Very well, I wish for…” The lord paused, obviously thinking “A blade that can not wear down, no matter how often it is used, it shall stay as sharp as it was in its first battle, centuries after, can you do that?”

The avatar froze. Inside his skull, he heard an explosion of laughter thunder like a chorus of hyenas. He let his eyes scan the room for any exits as he said, ”O-of cooouuurse. As the great lord commands. Would it just be possible if you loosened the rope about my hands first? I need them for the spell, you see.”

The lord eyed the avatar, sizing him up and down, he nodded to the guards, one going behind him to loosen the ropes, the other pointing his weapon towards him, at the ready. “I will note,” the lord spoke “Running will only make your punishment worse.”

”Understood, my lord, understood.” A sweaty, furrowed brow hung over shivering eyes as he held his hands out in front of him. He sucked in a breath through pursed lips. ”Alright… Here, we, go.” With the snap of his fingers, the entire town was enshrouded in darkness like that of the darkest, most starless night. Not even a bonfire could produce more than a simple flicker akin to that of a very distant star.

“He’s trying to escape!” The lord loudly proclaimed “Find him!” the guards stumbled about, unable to find the avatar in such encomposing blackness. In the back of the hall, one of the guards went, “Oomph!” as a powerful fist slammed into his leather harness. There sounded a metallic clatter and a voice followed, ”Right! Sword!”

“There he is!” The lord shouted “After him!” The guards rushed towards the back of the hall, some falter and falling due to the pitch blackness.

There was a metallic singe as the blade left its scabbard, followed by a few hard-packed hits and “oofs!” as guards fell over as though slammed in the abdomen by a club. A deafening crack sounded as a hole appeared in the wall. ”Hah! Let this be known, people of Hashimoto, as the day that you almost caught -ME!-, Twilight, Vagabond of the Moon! Farewell!” With that, his laughter disappeared out the hole.

As Twilight vanished through the hole, he could hear the roar of the Daimyo ordering his guards to follow, to various degrees of success. He ran through the swamps, splashing into deep water before long. He quickly charged into a swim and didn’t stop until he reached land again. He washed ashore, coughing and sniffling.

”Well, that went well,” taunted the voice in his head with a snicker.

”Not a word, Blue.”

”So how many people have you pissed off now, hmm? The Hashimoto sure didn’t sound happy, after all. Oh! And you prooobably just angered that crazy woman, too. Y’know, the one who was so helpful and gave you that shield…”

Twilight felt his heart stop and patted his back madly. ”No, no, no, no, NO! The shield!”

”Oh yeah! And you also swore on Tekret’s name that you would grant whatever that lord wished for, which you didn’t. Expect visions of an angry, naked man (or woman) in the near future.”

Twilight sat himself down in the sand again, face in his hands. The crunch of biscuits was still evident from the other side. ”If we had a god of hindsight, I would contact them for ya.”

”Take me back?” came a whimper. The chewing sounds stopped.

”Huuuuuuh?! After what you said and did earlier?! Pffft! Don’t give me that! Nope! You gotta work for it now, Twi. You’ve pissed off three gods and a town of mortals - I think you need some good, old-fashioned repentance.”

”Tell me, Blue-- I mean, Gibbou! Tell me how to repent!”

”Hmm… Start by calling me… Lady Gibbou.”

Twilight flinched. ”As, as you wish, Lady Gibbou…”

There came a hesitant hum. ”... Actually, that’s really weird and gross. Just Gibs is fine. You, uh… Start by finishing up that thing you were doing. Swimming east, right?”

”O-okay… Then what?”

”W-we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it, dumby! For now, get swimming! And, and if any of the gods give you trouble, tell me. I’ll talk to them.”

Twilight blinked. ”Y-you’d do that for me? Even though I did and said all those things?”

”W-well, it, it can’t be helped! You’re my avatar after, all - I’ve gotta take care of you. Y-yeah, that’s right! It’s my duty as a goddess, and not because I like you or anything!”

Twilight sighed and formed a small smirk. ”Understood… Gibs.”




Act two, Scene three: the puppet’s strings.


Yamat had heard the message, how could he not? It was loud, annoyingly loud, able to pierce into his personal prison, the voice of whoever it was was no help either, Yamat made the mental note to avoid whichever god had made the announcement, he had no interest in speaking to a god with that voice for long.

Now the message itself, now that was what Yamat cared about. A way to craft his beautiful play on Galbar without fear of the lifeblood? This was almost too good to believe, but, believe it he must, it gave him a shred of hope that he could influence the world a lot more directly.

Yamat walked through his barren prison, its wild wind whipping around him, kicking up the grey dust into swirling tornado like forms. He traveled until he came upon bleached white bones, half buried in the grey dirt, their form was strange, they were not something he had ever seen upon the world, they seemed to have burn marks on them, strange. Wherever they came from, they would be fitting for his new project.

With a snap he pulled the bones out of the dust, not caring if the bones were broken, fractured, or still attached to the other parts, they would work for his design regardless.

He gathered the bleached and burnt bones and put them into a pile. They clattered softly into the grey ash, Yamat kneeled down, his long lanky arms reaching out to touch the near fossils. He arranged them in a humanoid fashion, fusing broken bones together in strange ways and shapes, hip and legs bones fused with arm and shoulder bones to form strange jagged limbs, some bones were shattered further and fused to form grotesque hands and feet, a chest of broken ribs and shattered spines, and finally a head of broken skulls, shaped like a humanoid but with misshapen eye holes.

The base had been completed, now the other parts needed to be added. Long golden strips of cloth emerged from Yamat’s hands, wrapping themselves around the now fused bones, tightening itself to give them some structure and keep them together, covering every inch of the body, then came beautiful black robes with large hood to cover the face, long sleeves and reaching down to the bodies ankles, with the edge given a golden colouration.

Then came the last part, from each of Yamat’s fingers came long red tendon like strings, injecting themselves into the limbs and joints of the new body, pulsing softly for a few moments.

With a jerk of his hand, Yamat forced the body up, first its torso, then using its arms and legs to fully stand up.

”Rise and shine…” Yamat paused, should he give this thing a name? Did it deserve a name? He guessed even puppets should have a name, every actor needed a title after all. ”Rise and shine, Mathius.”

The puppet, Mathius as it were, groaned in a haggard straining voice, as if their non existent voice strings were coarse and rubbed against one another. ”What? Who? where?...” he spoke, his head drooping and turning, trying to gather in the area.

Yamat jerked his left pinky, forcing the head to keep itself upwards, ”You are, my avatar, my personal link to the moral world, my key,” he pulled open the strings, dragging Mathius closer to him ”To have more control over my beautiful play.”

Mathius stumbled, nearly falling, only saved by the strings keeping him aloft, slowly lifting his head up to the god. “What...the hell, does that mean?” he asked, his voice straining to be above that of a whisper.

”You, my dear Mathius, will be my conduit to create tragedy across the mortal plane, making sure the great play continues its acts.” Yamat waved one hand, sending half of Mathius’ body sprawling as a whirling portal opened up. ”This shall put you in the northern highlands of Toraan, feel free to wander around while I think up some scenes.”

”Wha-” the avatar could barely get any words out before Yamat flung both his hands towards the portal, sending Mathius flying through the rift. Slowly the tendon like strings faded away, before the portal closed in the blink of an eye. Yamat slowly curled his fingers, still feeling the connection with his puppet. He could see through his eyes as well as Mathius tumbled through the trees. Fitting. For now, the play could continue.

Entr'Acte: The Three Clans





Kinoshita, builders of faith


The sounds of bustling work echoed throughout the outskirts of Tategawa, woodworkers shaped planks of the dark Kailasa wood, drake beetles pulled the chopped down logs to production sites, artisans the finest this side of the Azakua Sea crafted beautiful sculptures made of clay and stone. Overseeing it all was Kinoshita Narikazu, grandson of Kinoshita Munehira, founder of Tategawa, he sat upon a slightly raised pedestal, in front of him lay a few clay tablets, each one with building designs upon them, to ensure everything was being built exactly as he desired.

He heard movement to his left, looking he saw Kuzuyama Koyo, local Kannushi and spiritual advisor to him. She was dressed in her white ceremonial robes, her mask was absolutely beautiful, an intricate and beautiful design of a red flower that Narikazu often found himself getting lost in, but he was quick to ensure his mind did not waver, he needed to be observant, this was an important task.

“Greetings Kannushi Kuzuyama.” Naikazu spoke, bowing his head in her direction with respect, before turning his attention once more to the ongoing work, two large wooden poles had begun to be planted into the ground, their dark wood sinking deep into the rocky and swampy earth of the isles.

Koyo bowed towards the Daimyo “Lord Kinoshita.” Her gaze too was drawn towards the construction, watching the workers and Drake Beetles do their best to ensure stability for their current work, the two posts were now getting two horizontal logs added to their tops, one shorter and placed in between the poles, the longer one placed on top and with a more flatter bottom. “It seems construction is going along nicely.” She finally spoke after a few seconds of waiting.

“Yes, we’re already getting ahead of schedule, as you can see,” he raised one of his hands, gesturing towards the finished construction of the poles, which had formed a gate-like structure, called a Torii if the Daimyo recalled correctly, while he was the patron of this construction, he was never one for spiritualism. “Though I believe the artisans wish for more time, they wish to give Kalaru a bit more extravagance with his form, add a bit more details to the tentacles and all.”

Koyo chuckled “I’m sure the god of the depths shall appreciate that.” Her gaze shifted leftward, towards the houses and structures of Tategawa proper, before once more looking upon the building site. “How much longer do you think it will take?”

This made the Daimyo think, he knew the Kannushi wished for little delay, but while Narikazu’s ancestors had kept to the faith, he was the first to ever attempt something like this, they had built yes, his grandfather especially but none of them had attempted to build a temple, one dedicated to all four of the gods as well. He was unsure of how long it would exactly take, already the artisans had brought some delay, unwilling to make any slights towards the gods, who knew what kind of delays could come from the workers, afraid of the gods wrath?

“I am rather unsure, as you know this is the first attempt to build something like this, the workers wish not to anger the gods.”
“Do not worry my Lord, the gods are sure to incredibly appreciate the devotion of this grandeur, the temple will be sure to gain their favor.”

The Daimyo thought for a moment, building such a place of worship was sure to negate any potential slights, but still, too many might be terrible for his people. “I will be sure to inform the workers,” He finally spoke after a few moments of thought. “But I can't promise it will be done before Natsu.”

“I see.” Koyo trailed off, staring off towards the construction site. Narikazu was unsure of what to say further, the Kannushi had a trend of this, many said she was speaking to the gods and spirits of the world while doing it, he just always assumed she was deep in thought. “In that case,” She finally spoke, turning towards the Daimyo, “I will bid my leave and return your attention to the work.” She bowed once more, before turning to leave.

Naikazu too bowed, “Off course.” As she left he found himself staring at her, his gaze lingering, the sound of construction drew him out though, and he once more turned his attention to the workers.

In time the temple would be built, a mighty building filled with icons and murals of the four gods: Yamatu, Akwael, Aritafek, Kalaru. It, in essence, would put Tategawa and by extension, the Kinoshita, upon the map across the Kailasa Isles. The First clan was born.




Hashimoto, Lords of the Blade.


Hashimoto Korekatsu had a mission, defend his people and end the rule of the Red Masks, bandits who had done nothing but terrorize the people of Okumaki, it needed to end. The young lord now marched alongside a retinue of warriors, some spearmen and a variety of archers, Korekatsu himself wielded a long copper spear and the copper blade of his father, who had been cut down by the Red Masks. They were a sizable force, volunteers from local villages who were fed up with the Masks’ rule, but the lord still hoped it was enough to take down the bandits.

The force marched deep into the rocky swamplands of Kiyodaka, the soft sound of their boots squishing into the dirt being the only sound in the silent forest. Korekatsu kept his eyes open, darting to check the trees and environment, wary of a potential ambush. He couldn’t be sure whether or not the Red Masks knew they were coming or not.

It was growing dark by the time they arrived upon their destination, through the mangled forest Korekatsu could see the fires of the Red Masks’ camp, he ordered his forces to halt, keeping them low to the ground to avoid the sight of sentries.

“What is the plan now my lord?” One of his retinue, Hori Morofusa, asked, he was an older reshut from a village close to Korekatsu’s, his knowledge of the bow and the local environment had made him a trusted ally to the lord.

“It doesn’t appear they’ve noticed us,” He replied, keeping an eye upon the camp, he could see the form of various Red Mask sentries illuminated by their torches, a few other forms moved about, appearing to be getting ready for sleep. “We shall wait until full nightfall, to ensure there are as few bandits awake as possible, then we will strike, your bowmen will take out the sentries, then, we strike.”

Morofusa nodded, going back to relay the plan to the other members of the force. They sat waiting deep in the mangled woods, the spearmen keeping their spears ready and the bowmen ensuring their bows and arrows were ready. As the dual moons raised higher into the sky, Korekatsu ordered Morofusa and the bowmen to spread out through the brush, ensuring they all had shots on the various sentries.

He waited, watching the shadowed forms, then, came the soft thunk of arrows. The forms fell, collapsing on themselves, he could see the shafts of arrows stick out of their bodies, now it was their time.

The spearmen kept low, yet still rushed through the brush, their spears at the ready. They drew closer and closer, spotting the fallen bodies of the sentries, they could see the sleeping bandits in their tents, he gestured for the spearmen to spread out, reading their spears, taking a bandit each. Korekatsu himself did not take one, instead heading towards the largest tent, that of the Red Mask’s leader.

A scream erupted through the camp. A bandit had woken up to see a spear straight at him, he did not scream long, said spear having been planted deep in his throat. But the harm had been done.

In an instant the camp had erupted into chaos, Red Masks shocked awake to see the retinue, some were cut down quickly while others managed to grab their weapons, fighting back against the force. Korekatsu found himself embedding his spear in a waking bandit, ensuring he did not add to the force, arrows began to fly from outside the camp, Morofusa and his bowmen hoping to aid the retinue against the bandits.

“Hashimoto!” A loud voice boomed over the carnage. He rapidly turned his head to see the leader of the Red Masks, Soga Hirakane, his imposing form aided by his blood red mask and his long curved sword, the bandit lord stared at the daimyo with pure hate in his eyes. Korekatsu pulled out his spear from the corpse with a sickened crunch, readying it towards the bandit.

The two warriors circled one another, neither one daring to strike first, less they gave their opponent an opening. The roar of battle surrounding them, Korekatsu clutched his spear close, his hand threatening the snap the shaft in half if they got too tight. Hirakane was growing impatient, eager to kill this rabble.

He struck first.

Their blades clashed, spear against sword, the clangs of metal against metal erupted, the duel had begun. The two danced around one another, blade striking blade, dodging or blocking a well timed strike, they were near even matches for one another.

Korekatsu lunged, his spear striking deep towards the bandit lord, but he anticipated this, backhanding the daimyo and sending him flying, his spear clattering to the ground far away from him. He felt the breath leave his lungs as he landed hard onto the hard dirt, his bones were screaming out in pain as he looked up, seeing Hirakane grow closer.

“Oh Hashimoto, you really thought you could beat me?” The bandit chuckled, bringing his sword to bear to utter the killing blow “You really are a foolish child.”
“The only one foolish here is you.” Korekatsu sputtered out, “You really should watch your back.”

THUNK

An arrow shot through the tree surrounding the camp, landing itself directly into the bandit’s shoulder, causing him to reel forward with the sudden force. Korekatsu had his moment. He shot one of his legs out, kicking the bandit straight in the chest, sending him flying back. Struggling up he drew his sword, walking as quickly as his legs could carry him towards the now prone bandit.

Hirakane struggled to get up himself, his own right arm shooting with pain due to the embedded arrow head, but he was not quick enough. Korekatsu lunged with his sword, sinking it deep into the chest of the bandit, burgundy blood spilled forth from the wound. Hirakane could only stare at the Daimyo with pure and utter hatred, the strength leaving his limbs and the life from his eyes. He soon fell limp, Korekatsu slowly drew the sword out of the bandit’s chest, slick with burgundy blood.

The battle had been won, it had cost some lifes, some of the force had been cut down by the bandits, but they had won, the Red Masks were gone. Korekatsu could hear the cheers of “Hashimoto! Hashimoto!” erupting from the gathered force. The party would return to their home, applauded and celebrated by the people, the Hashimoto would become respected amongst the people as protectors of the people. The second clan was born.




Ohta, masters of the deal


Enkoshi was in celebration, the Reshut of the city were in pure joy, images of the gods were paraded around, food made from the plants and animals of the isles were laid out, blind Goze musicians sang and played beautiful music while dancers twirled and spun in long flowing robes coloured in bright and fantastical colours of plants found deep in the swamps.

Ohta Yasukuni sat at the docks upon several cushions, watching the celebrations while drinking a traditional Sake, next to him similarly sat Taagrulxarus, a Vrool tyrant. The Ohta and Taa’s tyranny had met some years earlier, as the Vrool had established himself and some of his lesser vrool and Akua servants close to the eastern shores of Kailasa, close to the are the Ohta and its allies had established itself.

The vrool had a tough time establishing if the Daimyo recalled correctly, the oceans around the Isles were not the most rich and the Oceants, those mighty hives of the oceans, had been engaging in conflict with him and made it harder to hunt. Additionally, from what the Daimyo had learnt, there were other Tyrants, but Taa was a minor one, so far the only Vrool to settle in the lands of the Kailasa at least to both of their knowledge. Taa was, in relation to other Vrool, not that powerful, but to the Ohta, he could be a useful aid.

And so, they now sat side by side, the Vrool being given a variety of Reshutian delicacies such as rice paddies and cooked catfight, and drinking more than his fair share of Sake, he turned towards the Daimyo, patting him on the back with one tentacle.
“I must say you Reshut sure know how to hold a celebration!” He spoke in his loud boisterous voice, his tongue was strange, Yasukuni believed it was called Vonu? He was still unsure, but it was nearly alien to him, luckily his Aku retainers spoke a far more understandable version to the land based Reshut which the vrool himself could understand.

“Well, why would we not celebrate?” The daimyo responded, raising a glass of sake in honor of their forming friendship. “We are forming a great bond together.”

“Yes, quite.” Taa leaned back, gesturing for his Aku retainers to begin fanning him, keeping him cool in the humid climate of the isles. “So, if I may, refresh myself upon our deal, you provide me with food and some tribute and in exchange,” he gestured another tentacle towards the growing fleet of basic ships the Ohta commanded as trading vessels with other nearby Reshut communities. “Me and my court will help protect your vessels in their voyages?”

The daimyo nodded “That is correct, I believe it is a respectful deal to a tyrant such as yourself?”

Taa uttered a boisterous laugh once more “Oh of course it is! Food for some basic assistance, I would be an idiot not to accept!”

This time it was Yasukuni’s turn to chuckle “Well then, shall we have another round of sake to celebrate?” The daimyo gestured for more of the drink to be brought.

Taa looked once more at the daimyo “This shall be the beginning of a very good friendship.”

“Couldn’t agree with you more.”

Tales would come from the east, the ships of the Ohta guarded by creatures of the sea, the only Reshut to ever make dealings with the sea. Their fame, and wealth only grew, aided by their newfound allies, the name of the Ohta spread across the east. The third clan was born.


Act Two, Scene Two: A meeting of like minds


Yamat stared at all the other gods, gathering in their groups, talking and conversing, happy to see one another after however long they have been stuck in their prisons. Some took others to their prisons, seemingly happy to show off their decorations. Yamat just stared at all his new actors, each one was sure to add more to his play, and there were more than enough to keep his plans going. Oh what a joyous day!

He scanned the crowd of gods, there was that naked furious one who just seemed to be angry constantly, there was Qael who had been speaking to some weird white haired god, oh! And Iternis, Yamat made sure he would talk to him again, there was that one god just lazing about, which he could respect, huh, there was Oraelia with what appeared to be a small child, he hoped she hadn’t figured out his actions in the prairie, he was sure it was fine by now.

That's when he saw her.

She stumbled into Oraelia and the child, suddenly, a new goddess, someone he hadn’t seen before, Yamat was, drawn to her. Of all the gods he had seen, she was, almost different in a way, Yamat couldn’t quite point it out there was just, something about her that drew him to her. He watched the trio have their conversation, they seemed to investigate the new goddess’ prison, they talked and talked, until, the new one moved on, she drifted off the ground. Yamat had to meet her.

He walked up to her, softly, to make sure he didn’t startle her suddenly, as soon as he drew close, he finally spoke out to her.
“Why hello there, a pleasure to see a new face here.”

The pale goddess, who had barely had time to float back towards the tear in reality leading towards her personal prison, managed to look briefly startled all the same. She twisted around in the air, laying azure eyes on Yamat. Initial shock turning to dispassionate suspicion, and the goddess pursed her lips into a soft frown. Still, she didn’t shy away from replying to his greeting. ”Oh, ...hello… Did you just arrive as well?”

“Well, i’ve been here for a slight bit, watching around and talking to all these new faces,” Yamat turned around to look at all the other gods, gesturing with his arms, before turning back towards the goddess. “Figured I might introduce myself to someone as captivating as you,” The god bowed deeply, ”Yamat, at your service.”

The pale goddess lifted her chin considerably, trailing his gaze as he turned to gesture at the others. She seemed apprehensive at the thought, and quickly focused back on Yamat. His words seemed to deepen her frown at first, although she did her best to maintain neutrality. A hand extended up to run along her hair as he bowed, fingers briefly touching at her horn. “...Neiya. I am the Goddess of Love. What service are you to me, Yamat?”

Yamat straightened himself up, gazing upon Neiya, she was proving to be incredibly interesting, a goddess of love, is that why he was so drawn to her? “Well, I suppose that depends on the love, and, which one you are.” Yamat was growing more and more curious about her.

”-Which one-?” Neiya replied, huffing a sharp breath and closing her eyes briefly. She parted her lips as if to speak, then instead moved fingers to press against her right temple just in front of the obsidian horn. She opened her eyes to watch the god once more, a building frustration clear on her features as she drifted soundlessly towards him in the air. Her hand lifted slowly from her own face, extending towards Yamat in turn. Sedate fingers stretched towards his face, undaunted - unlike her earlier apprehension with the other gods. ”Let me show you.”

Yamat was, for the first time since his creation, slightly worried, but he could not lie that his curiosity had hit its peak, what did she mean by show him? He accepted the hand drawing towards him, ever curious. Neiya placed her pale hand where his cheek would be beneath the mask, her fingers cradling the mask gently. With a baited breath, her eyes focused on his face. As her fingers settled, a flood of emotion, memories and experiences rushed across the tenuous physical connection, assaulting Yamat’s mind with a torrent of new emotion. Joy, happiness, kinship, all fleeting and brief in the warm, longing feel they imparted. The maelstrom shifted, twisting into mortals crying, intense grief, the hollow despair of loss and heartbreak. Brief glimpses of Neiya’s own experiences on Galbar, interspersed with two millennia’s worth of mortal emotional pain, thoroughly drowning out the brief moments of pleasant emotion. The horned goddess watched him with deep, sorrowful fascination, her own eyes welling up with tears as Yamat’s halo began to tinge the same shade of blue as her icy stare.

Yamat’s arm slowly drew upwards, shaking softly, he gripped Neiya’s arm, slowly pushing it off his mask, his face and outward appearance never changing, the halo turning once more to its golden yellow. “So...that’s why I was drawn to you…” Yamat let Neiya’s arm fall, “I apologize, some proper introductions are in order.” He took a slight step back, once more performing a bow, this time far more extravagant, his lanky body doubling over, and his left hand extended outward. “Yamat, God of Tragedy, something,” He straightened up once more, “I believe you are familiar with, Neiya.”

The horned goddess flexed her fingers slowly, lowering it to her side as she regarded Yamat’s redoubled efforts to introduce himself. ”Tragedy,” she repeated with a dissonant sigh. ”...So you understand. The pain of the mortal world.” Neiya slowly touched down on the ground before him, greying the dirt to slowly match the bleak landscape in the portal behind her. ”I see now, another to carry the burden.”

Yamat watched as Neiya drifted down, the greying dirt reminded him of his own prison “Yes, the, dark side of the mortal world is not unknown to me, but, as the god I am, I have come to accept my position in this great play.” He extended his hand outward to Neiya “But, it is great to know there is another who has seen what I have seen, a like mind in this world.”

She extended her hand in turn, a graceful grasp of his hand to mimic the motion she’d learnt two millennia ago - and shook it with the same cold tranquility as she seemed to do her best to exude at other times. ”What is a play, Yamat?” she queried after a few moments, allowing her gaze to study the god in full. ”And how do I know my position in it?”

“Well…” Yamat paused, never having had to actually answer that question before “A play is, in the best way I can describe it, a performance, the mortal world, and ours, to me at least, are a magnificent play, performing our duties as actors would upon a stage, as for your role.” Yamat gestured all around them once more “You only need to remind yourself of where and who you are, a god is a fitting lead role if i do say so myself.”

”A lead role...” The goddess murmured in distant thought, before zoning back to reality. ”I rather like that, Yamat. Perhaps I have been too passive for a goddess of my station,” she pondered aloud. ”The mortals pine for me, but only intermittently.”

Yamat’s eye seemed to brighten at the goddess’ comment. “Of course Neiya, a lead role should be active within their play, making their presence known.” He pondered for a second, his curiosity for Neiya having dwindled now replaced with utter fascination. “Perhaps then Neiya, that, is the service I can provide? A lead role always needs its support.”

The horned goddess lifted her chin once more, usurping a certain regal air to her composure as Yamat continued to fuel the fire of her ego. Following his words, she lifted up off the ground, glancing out over what she could behold of Antiquity. ”...Yes. You’re right,” she began, convincing herself more than agreeing with Yamat. She turned in the air to glance at her prison behind her, frowning briefly. ”Maybe you have some ideas, on how I could improve my-... role, as you said.”

“Well, it's obvious you have some presence upon the mortal world, but perhaps it’d be best to expand upon it? Gather some of your faithful, give them a cause? Ensure your name spreads in some way,” Yamat too gazed towards Neiya’s prison, finding comfort in its likeness to his own “A beautiful realm by the way.”

That seemed to catch the Love Goddess off-guard, and she looked back to Yamat with surprise. “Rea-... Thank you,” she managed, changing her composure mid-sentence. A few awkward seconds later, she gestured towards it. ”Would you like to see the rest of it? You can tell me more about your ideas.”

Yamat nodded, a soft smile creeping behind his mask, hidden to the goddess, it felt, genuine somehow. “I’d be happy to,” He gestured an arm towards the portal “Lead the way.” Following behind the goddess as she led him into the realm.



Act Two, Scene One: Magic and Tragedy





Yamat was, unsure of where he had arrived, it was strange to say the least, it wasn’t Galbar that's for sure, as he didn’t recount a coliseum ever being created. The wide field in the center was sand like, and Yamat could see a variety of other portals farther off, other gods? Oh, there was a lot of them, his play was more crowded than he expected.

Yamat took in the new scenery, it was empty at the moment, had the other gods not noticed? Or was he the last one to arrive? He pondered the questions silently. Until, they were answered.

It wasn’t Galbar, that was for sure. Qael observed the wonderfully large coliseum he arrived at. He arrived near one of his siblings. A masked figure dressed in gold. The masks conjured memories of the Reshut. Those first blessed with his teachings. He walked up next to him and said: “Do you think it wants us to fight?” He asked, referring to Lifeblood. Even though he asked the question, he showed no sign of hostility. Only curiosity.

Yamat jumped at the sudden voice, turning to look at the newcomer. Upon seeing it was another god, he calmed down somewhat “Oh, you’re another god.” He stated, before turning once more to the coliseum and answering the newcomer’s question: “I’m, not sure, it's certainly a strange place to pick as a meeting point for us all.”

“I think I was a God. On Galbar.” He said as he turned to Yamat. There was no way of knowing the two had come from the same realm. Perhaps there were as many Galbars as there were gods. Who was to know, in a place like this? “Now I’m not sure what I am really. A creator removed from his creations.” He mused with a somber tone. The whispers had returned, though not as many as before. Even his own people had begun to forget his name. It caused him to miss Galbar. It was so full. Even here, with all his siblings, it felt as if something was short. “I am Qael’Naath. God of Magic.” He introduced himself, as he turned back to look at the marble stone. “Considering the shortcomings of some of my siblings, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was its goal.” If Qull would appear here, the entire place would surely be sundered in an effort to kill each other.

“Well, a creator removed is still a creator are they not?” Yamat pondered openly, staring at the somber Qael. “But, I am Yamat, god of…” He pondered for a second, debating whether to reveal his domain, before he performed a rather extravagant bow “God of Tragedy.” His lanky body shot back up afterwards, joining Qael in looking at the stones. “It appears we are the only ones currently, the others must be busy.”

“Tragedy?” There was no judgment in Qael’s tone. In fact, he was thoroughly intrigued by it. Tragedy was a spoke in the wheel of progress. “I must confess, I did not know you existed. Though, I do think that I have encountered one of your creations. Judging from their masked habits, at least.” He said, a bit more cheerful. “Tell me, amongst confidants, what did you do on Galbar?”

“Ah yes, those are the Reshut, my finest work.” Yamat turned somber for a moment, worrying how his children were doing, before addressing Qael. “I, well, caused tragedy, creating tornadoes in a vast prairie, forging a sword that quakes the mightiest of mountains but once removed from its hold, curses its wielder, I created the Reshut and Iskrill, and caused tragedy across the world.” Yamat stared off towards the portals, wondering if Orealia or Iternis were amongst them. “In essence, I crafted the beautiful play that is tragedy.”

A smirk formed on Qael’s lips. Finally, he met someone who was not so hung up about all the bad things happening to the mortals. He turned his back on the stone to watch the many portals open. Wondering if he’d see any familiar faces. His mind pulled up a memory from Galbar as he observed his siblings from a distance. His talk with Lucia, despite the time, still resonated with him. “Do you care?” Qael suddenly said after a period of silence. His tone was dead serious however. “About your Reshut and Iskrill? Would you be sad if some of them died…tragically young?”

Yamat was taken aback by the sudden question, Qael could not see it behind the mask but he held a bit of a confused expression. He thought for a moment, thinking about the question. “I, am sure it would be sad for those around them, but I personally? It is a matter of life is it not? Mortals die, some even young, it is tragic yes, but, that is my work is it not? I care about them. Yes, I wish for them to grow strong and live as full as they can, but even my own creations are not free from their mortal existence and tragedy, it does not discriminate afterall, and I should know.”

“You are quickly becoming the most intriguing sibling I seem to have, Yamat.” Qael said as his smile grew. Finally, one who understood. Cherish life but accept the living die. Alas, while it was comforting to have a sibling who grasped that concept, Lucia’s words would require far more contemplation and reflection. Though his eyes and focus now were in front of him, looking at all the siblings that were arriving. Noting one angry, naked god in particular. Perhaps he was the god of loud drunkards? Who was to say? “So what will you do should you get back to Galbar? Any big plans prepared?”

“Well, I have a play to begin once more, the curtains are opening on what i'm hoping will be an incredibly interesting act.” Yamat spread his arms outwards, taking in the plethora of gods, before turning once more to Qael “Though of course, getting back to Galbar will be the hard party, what are you planning to do my magical sibling?” He asked.

Qael thought about it for a moment. What would he do back in Galbar? Despite the millennia of time, he hadn’t mediated upon Lucia’s words nearly enough yet. So no doubt he would be doing that first. But then what? “I don’t know.” He finally said. “I suppose I first should know what happened with magic while I was gone. But as you said we first need to find a way to get back.” He turned to face Yamat. “It’s been a true honor and a comfort to get to know you, Yamat. I hope me and mine will play our parts expertly in your grand play. Now, however, I must go. Someone has to start getting us back and I’m not sure if any of my siblings will be industrious enough to start the process.” Qael’Naath was well aware that tragedy would not discriminate. He would suffer it too, no doubt. As would his creations. It was best to simply accept the inevitable. With that he left the god of tragedy alone, moving to a more secluded spot as he summoned his magic around him and ordered it to prod every stone, bit of ground or even the supposed empty air.

“I wish you well in your endeavors.” Yamat spoke as he bowed to the leaving Qael, he turned back, taking in all the gods. Plans began to form in his mind, the great play would continue, and he had countless actors to perform within it.


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