Pinned toot

The Ichor Seas, formless depths of formless material, its waters a hungry, darksome substance which cloys for fulfillment and structure, the basic building-blocks of our dimension.

No life can tread deep into it, for it tears apart those souls which dare attempt, but for a select few. Those who do make it below see other skies blossoming and dying under the waves, but even further down, something else lies...

Your emotions are a part of you as much as your flesh. Hatred will fester in you like cancer until it overtakes all else, sorrow will wear at you until your spirit decays into tears, determination will hold you to this plane even beyond your body and emptiness will speed your passage to the next.

Take care of your soul, and if you can, try to see inside of yourself. There are secrets in spirits, even your own.

"Do not tarry," he warns. "Do not let it fester."

Apparently eschewing the payment in light of what weighs on her, he shuffles quietly out of the room. The two of us are left to stew in it, as she stares emptily at the paper between her fingers.

"What are you so angry about...?" I ask.

She looks at me.

(x)

As he speaks, a realization dawns in her eyes. She knows almost instantly, and he watches the threads of void twitch and writhe in her chest.

He slips her a small piece of parchment with a rune already inscribed in it. "It would be best not to let this hatred overtake you. I have seen it happen."

His expression sinks only lower, as he seems to recall something. "I am sure you are familiar with Shades. That is the only fate for those who lose themselves in such emotions."

(->)

"The only way to treat your ailment, miss, is the resolution of your anger and the healing of your scars. There is something weighing on your heart, a particularly heavy dark spot. I cannot possibly know what it represents, but I suspect it is a single cause, metastasizing to consume your entire life.

Evaluate what is making you so angry, seek it out and put an end to it. As for the rest... I know someone who can offer you the kind of spiritual healing you need."

(->)

Of course, I am ecstatic. Finally, someone knows what is happening.

"What is it? Is it some kind of virus?" I ask, with almost naive excitement.

"It is the Rot," he says, his voice grim.

"...The Rot?"

"There is hatred blooming in her heart, and a thousand untreated wounds on her soul. There is nothing I can do for you here."

She looks at him like a wild animal, and I catch her gaze. I hardly recognize that look... "Of course... another useless magi. If you expect payment..."

(->)

He looked over her. He could see into her spirit; he could see a woman, though her physical body untouched by even the slightest blemish, who was brutally scarred. Jagged lines streaked over her spectral face and across her throat.

Thick threads of black spaced out her chest cavity like strands of mold, winding around her heart, strangling her arteries, climbing her spine and blossoming over her brain.

"I see it," he proclaimed. Her eyes flitted to him.

(->)

The decrepit shaman, gaze wise beyond his years even though those years were soon to come to a close, shuffled into the room.

He looked at her, in the bed. His eyes went wide as he approached the bedside of the sickened woman, her hands twitching and clutching and digging into her arms. It looked like her blood was boiling in her veins, her arms were flush, her knuckles were white, her eyes burned with fire.

(*)

Angels are entities of divinity, of light, love and magic. What horrific and twisted iteration of "divinity", then, do these "angels" represent?

I know what they have done. I know they killed everyone on that island. They killed everyone in my village. They lurk in the shadows, they pull the strings, and no one else sees them there.

What do they want with us?

(x)

No one can tell me anything about them. I reach for them, I feel their presence graze the tips of my fingers, I see their otherworldly bodies at the edges of my vision at night, but I can never truly perceive them.

No matter what I do, no matter how far I trek, no matter how many scholars I seek counsel with, not one of these useless mongrels has been able to tell me about them. Only that they are called the Vekhnamar, the Angels of the Veil, whatever that means.

(->)

Why do they haunt me so?

That idiot Shaman, didn't know what he was doing. My village in ruins, their vile eldritch energies twisting around my body, but there I was, in that crater, left alive. For what?

I gazed into its face, into its millions of eyes, and it looked at me like I was disgusting. It brandished a blade, and through that blade disappeared back into whatever wretched hive it had been summoned from.

(->)

The angels, they call them. The angels, the angels, the angels.

They are no angels. I see them on the insides of my eyes, I see them haunting my every movement, blossoming from my shadow one moment and vanishing the next.

I saw them plunge into the Ichor, in the millions. We all saw them, and it's as if we've all forgotten.

The island, their maddened scrawlings speak of that Angel of the Veil, and I can see the fear in the eyes of the shades, looking at it in the tower on that last day.

(*)

They don't understand, they never will. We will flay their souls bare until they can accept her power. We will flay this world bare until it can accept her power. We will flay ourselves bare until we can accept her power. We will flay the firmament bare until it can accept her power.

Ascension takes sacrifice. We will sacrifice everything for her. Only when the stars no longer shine, only when our souls are truly empty, only when the world lays in ashes, will it be pure enough for her.

Nailaxkha, Queen of Steel, Sacrificial Fire.

She waits on the shore, in a cocoon of metal. We adorn the Spire with the shells of all of us who perish in her name, in the hopes that the armor we inhabit would serve her well in her ascension.

The war drums beat in time with her heart, the lanterns burn with little portals to her ardent soul.

Every tree will burn, every soul will burn, so that the world will finally be pure enough that she may ascend to her celestial throne, us in tow.

The sun rises, and the voices of the firmament leave you for the time being. Your mental presence is still weak, and so you find yourself staggeringly alone in the forest, waiting for their voices to return.

You sit in place, phantasmal as ever, looking at your hands, your body. Each detail of your body, your world as a whole, is constantly new, and it is hard to keep any memory other than their stories and the words of the Weaver in your mind.

But such beautiful stories they are...

(x)

The saddest story, whispered to you as dawn breaks, comes from a comet that streaks through the rising sunny haze. They tell you about their sister, for whom they gave their life in extricating her from the collapsing Human kingdom to the North.

They say, as the sun's burning light begins to drown them out, that although their name likely graces the memory of no other person, it is her fond memories to which the Weaver has dedicated the gorgeous tail of colors that streaks behind them.

(->)

So many are more excited to speak more of their kin than themselves; one, his effigy a simple asteroid in the sky, relays to you a story about his still-living son, and the respected blacksmith he has become. He tells you he can see the Weaver already building his effigy, a blindingly bright star, and how proud he is.

Another, a drifter, tells you fantastical stories about strange things he saw in the alleys and deep paths of his city, and a legendary beast he once saw.

(->)

They whisper such beautiful things, such strange and wonderful stories. It is always hard to watch them disappear behind the light of the Architect each day, but you know they will return at nightfall.

One tells you about her wife, a wily and dashing rogue who sailed the perilous Ichor seas her whole life, and discovered distant islands.

Another proudly extols of his resistance against the Vaskhul, and the work done by his men to push them back.

(*)

TW upsetting stuff? 

TW upsetting stuff? 

It is a decade later.

You join them in their conquest. The village you have taken is lit only by the divine fire of Nailaxkha, in lanterns posted at each corner which sap the life from the inhabitants.

The last of the witches are being rounded up now. You are there to assist.

A woman among the group looks up at you, as you stand over her. As you bark orders, something sparks in her eye.

"Laran? Laran!" she calls to you, desperation choking her voice. She shows you a ring.

(->)

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Glyph's Oubliette

This is the place we all sent Glyph.