Monday, September 23, 2013

Secrets of Desylinn: The First War

By John Belliston


First there was Grandmother Chaos. Great and infinite and beyond the capacity of comprehension.

Then, born from Her womb came the Oldest, bearing his Stewpot of Fate and having no Name beyond his title. Then in a wave of light and glory came Ssita, whose love shapes the universe. Then came Ariga, whose joys and sorrows create the seasons. Nhoj burst forth half formed and hungry to claim the name his siblings had uttered. And finally in the loud wake of her brother Daras came, like the gentle whisper of an end; so distracted were her siblings she ended up naming herself.

When Nhoj and Ssita first saw each other they fell into a love so vast no poetry or song could hope to grasp it, so deep its roots formed the foundation the universe. In this time before time, Ssita pulled her gaze from her beloved and looked upon her siblings, and upon the universe beginning to congeal around them. Then she looked upon her mother, and she shuddered.

Grandmother Chaos, as the mortals would come to call her, hungered for creation and destruction. If an entity’s mind were to ever look back upon the budding universe, it would not survive Grandmother’s attention. So Ssita reached into the core of her being and tapped into the limitless love which resided within her. With infinite care and terrible speed she formed her own essence into a magic strong, flexible, and powerful enough to hold back the tides of transformational power. She would act as the font for that energy. Her will and love would take the energy of Chaos and turn into the substance of the universe. She had become the Chaosgate of Creation. For this act her siblings named her Queen.

During this phase, Daras and the Oldest succumbed to their profound attraction to each other. Their coupling was like the glacier and the wildfire, destructive, restrained, cold and yet burning, and from their cosmic crossing came Mar, the God of Light and Law.

Though Ssita’s love and power held back the full force of Grandmother, the Chaosgate itself remained incomplete. Though his love for her could consume him from within, Nhoj refused to take that place. He had no interest in rule. He sought to feed his hunger for secrets and hidden knowledge. Kingship would just waste his time.

However the young and ambitious Mar saw the lack of a king as a profound affront. So, without delay he began to court Ssita. She resisted his advances out of respect for her love of Nhoj, but the needs of the universe outweighed her desire.

So lost in his studies of the forming universe Nhoj knew nothing of the young gods advances. Daras came to him and told him of the foolishness of her brother and of the blind ambition of her son. At this news, Nhoj screamed, a deep and primal howl which vibrates through the dark places for the rest of time. Without logic or strategy the God of Knowledge hurled himself at the God of Law. Claws, teeth, and infinite divine force strengthened past the point of madness by the fierceness of Nhoj’s love.

The younger god was caught unaware. Great chunks were torn from his essence and he stumbled right into his father, The Oldest. His Stewpot spilled over and the Stew of Fate cooled and congealed into the mortal plane. Seeing the fury in Nhoj’s eye’s Mar fled down to the new creation to close his wounds and prepare for the next attack.

Using his spilt blood and the materials of the new plane Mar crafted an army. The Truths of Mar were gleaming creatures of Light, Ice, and Will. They moved forth in a terrible wave. They defined all they touched. They bound the still warm stuff of fate into weapons and servants for Mar. They shaped everything around them into unbreakable and terrible chains. When Nhoj followed after, the Truths jumped up and tried to contain the full might of God of Knowledge. The binds cut into his flesh and tore out great chunks from his form. But there was always much Chaos in Nhoj, and this he used to slide, twist, and warp his very essence to escape.

Nhoj retreated then, surprised and unprepared to face the relentless nature of the Truths. He delved into the dark places, the deep places. There he sought and looked. He delved into this strange new mortal realm. He ran and while he ran he bled. The chunks of his flesh and bone merged with the plane and formed, by accident, the strange maelstroms' bedlam which became his army, The Secrets of Nhoj.

For each thing the Truths defined the Secrets tore apart, or made irrelevant with their own wild creations. Each side fought with terrible force, but Nhoj’s army tried a thousand tactics. They hurled themselves into battle as a distraction for others to sneak on past.

As their armies made slow and terrible war across the face of creation, Mar and Nhoj fought with raw force. Hurling powerful spells, the likes of which would never be seen again, they became so lost in the fight that at times they forgot the reasons for their mighty battle.

After shaping and tearing apart the new plane a thousand times, the tide turned. Mar flinched at the assault and Nhoj’s Secrets sealed away his army in what would become the Blackfire Mountains. Bound by defeat and his own honor, Mar waited for the terms of the new King’s Victory.

Though it was meaningless to Nhoj, he asked Mar to kneel before him and swear fealty for time eternal. For Mar would be bound by his word. He would no more try for the Throne, and Nhoj could have both his study, and his love.

He became the Chaosgate of Void, taking the excesses of order and returning them to Chaos. He would rule by the side of Ssita, and it was their love that held Grandmother at bay.

There are many echoes of the First War left in the world. It is said that Nhoj had his servants craft a great city that served no other point than to witness the submission of the God of Law. Some say that those that fear the dark can still hear the reverberations of that first and terrible scream. And in the deep and forgotten places the Remnants of the First War remain to be unearthed. Magic unlike any other. Things unlike anything after.

Things better left forgotten.