[PDQ] The Grand Mythos Game Thread

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Maskelyne - 30, 2

"I will not be bested in my own realm, beast."

Maskelyne heard the cry emanating from the battlefield and understood implicitly it's meaning. Contest. One of his fellows swung at Aweio'Lkkd, lightning in his grasp, seeking bloody retribution an his single most beloved. In the distance, Niv held Madness between his strong arms, wrapping her like a present for his brother's joyous opening. Nivix would be rewarded, somehow, Maskelyne decided. His brother would share in Maskelyne's joy.

But first, his present would have to be kept from angry arms.

Maskelyne lifted his arms and from the endless plains beneath the horizon, a pearly bird soared high. Its wings sent it lopping like the mightiest steeds of hell toward the battlefield where its immense size could be seen by all. The Dove was four score larger than the grandest of the horrors, its wingspan the breadth of fortress walls. And as it released a soft coo, the dust of corrupted plants life spun lax waltzes into the air. It was perfect.

The gigantic Dove swept madness into it's taloned grasp as the sea might claim a ship. And carefully, paternally, it raged into the emptiness between stars, Aweio'Lkkd in it's grasp.

Maskelyne thanked the bird, Giles, and his brother Nivix with a voice that echoed from shadowy corners. It was detached from his form, the better to remain unseen. Maskelyne's shadowy stroll borught him swiftly to the back of Pentar, lightning still stemming at the rapidly departing madness.

"My fellow." Maskelyne said from his own body now, placing a careful hand of Pentar's shoulder. "Come with me."

A flash of light summoned the onyx finery of the Hell Court, and banished the steely clash of the war outside that realm. Maskelyne surveyed the Demons, painted red and armed with antlers. He decided a from more befitting their kind would be appropriate, and adopted it artfully as a mask hovered before his face.

He turned on the god who had assaulted his precious, a careful swirl of his cape emphasizing his shift of attention.

"Who are you, and why have you assaulted my Ward?" Maskelyne asked. "Aweio'Lkkd has been claimed; I claim her. When you offer her violence, it is her master you insult. Why do you treat me so dishonorably?"

Eldarwen - 14 AP, 0 MP

Zareth cut himself and let his blood drip into one of the green hands in the ground.

"Let this seal our bond forever. May your daughter grow and prosper knowing that their mother fought for them and that the death god shed his blood for them. And would do so again without hesitation. Others will say that poison flows through their veins, let them hold their heads high and know it is the strength of their parent gods."

He said, and stepped close to her, before whispering in her ear how the predators would now be hesitant before biting any of her daughters. She was glad that he had helped her yet again, but surprised at some of his gestures. Eldarwen looked at her own hand, but doubted that she would bleed if she cut herself. She was no longer a.. There was a memory there, but out of her grasp. Why did she think she could even bleed? If she ever became a mortal, her form would not be that of an animal or sentient. She'd be a pretty tree.

"I thank you then, friend." Somehow the word friend seemed weak for what they had just done, even if she couldn't understand herself why she felt like that. Mortals might call it partners in the future, but the concept of romance or love was lost to her. "I will honour this alliance, and my daugthers will revere death. Not as something to fear or hate for taking their companions from them, but as an necessary end, to bring about a new beginning, to give another the gift of life. They will understand."

She heard a cry from her garden, which meant that the horrors still weren't defeated. Eldarwen searched for the beast who had corrupted her garden, wondering what Maskelyne had done with it, and found it in the claws of a large white dove. She was pleased to see that it wasn't allowed to run free, and decided to strengthen the prison with her own powers.

The queen spun around and pointed her staff at a large tree, sending her own magic into it, before uprooting the tree and hurling it away from the planet towards the bird. The dove caught it in its beak. If the dove ever dropped madness, the roots of the trees would entangle it and make sure it didn't get far, before the bird could pick it up again.

She would have prefered to see madness executed, but a prison would have to do, as she'd rather not anger too many of her fellow gods this early.

Pentar 22AP 2MP

"Who are you, and why have you assaulted my Ward? Aweio'Lkkd has been claimed; I claim her. When you offer her violence, it is her master you insult. Why do you treat me so dishonorably?"

It took a moment for the last few, bazaar moments to catch up to Pentar, but when they did they were accompanied by fury. Clearly this other God had been the one that summoned the dove and removed him from battle. And he said that he claimed Madness, would protect it? What kind of reasoning was this? "My name is Pentar, the God of Order." he said, the words echoing around the Hell Court like thunder. He once again grew a pair of horns, but this time he stayed the same height as the other God. "How dare you offer your protection to that monstrosity. Left alone it will ruin all that we create. Explain yourself!"

M'endaxius - 24/30 AP, 2/2 MP

It saw the flood of tears landing on Roe. It saw the child god cry. The Aask were swept by the wave of water. M'endar was horrified. First, Seith with his 'enlightenment' had twisted them, now the child was keen to abort the birth. M'endar would not stop the god's action, but at least he could save a few to settle again and grow. Arms burst forth from the darkness inside the robe and M'endar soon resembled one of the hecatonchires, the image of the many-armed creatures burnt into its brain at creation from whatever was there before. But first M'endar briefly teleported to the Hallowed Court to the happenings there. It saw the remaining void creatures battling against the gods that remained there to fight. And it saw Seith, to its surprise he seemed somewhat weakened. Then M'endar had an idea. An idea to plant an idea in the others' heads.

Using its power to communicate across the cosmos, it whispered something - a hissing whisper that sounded like The Whispering Wyrm was just a hair's breadth away, suggesting through a hushed voice. The message was suited to the god that it recieved it, but the gist of it was:

"My birth brother, Seith, lies weakened. If you wish to take advantage of this, then do so. For surely when he recovers, he will seek to control everything again."

The seed planted, M'endar flashed back to overlooking Roe. Then with its great hands, it scooped up the Aask from the tidal wave, their lives in its hands and looked among them with a caring eye. They was its. And M'endar would make sure of that. M'endar whispered to them in the manner of a caring parent:

"I created you. I cared for you. I have come to rescue you. Will you join with your parent with a bond forged to last many lifetimes?"

M'endar could only wait their answer as the water drained off the creatures and back onto the planet it came from. Sure, it had been a chaotic rescue, sure M'endar was tricking them with lies and half-truths. But they were its. It could only await the answer from the gods. From the results from his cry for aid, Seith was not a popular figure, but more of a controlling figurehead. Many had their own tune to follow and Seith would just urge them on his, the so-called 'path of enlightenment'. Pity he didn't know the harshest truth of all - that the truth was whatever you believed to be the truth. Nothing more, nothing less. Especially in this new world. There were no foundations, only what the gods had created. And the sooner Seith realised that the better. After all, it was pathetic. Delusions of grandeur always were. At least M'endar knew and embraced its nature.

Nivix - 19, 1

Having helped deliver Madness into Giles' enormous talons, Nivix took his leave. Undoubtedly Maskelyne would want some time to examine his prize, and there was so much else to do in the meantime!

"My birth brother, Seith, lies weakened. If you wish to take advantage of this, then do so. For surely when he recovers, he will seek to control everything again."

...Like dealing with that voice in his head. That was probably something that needed to be addressed.

Shaking his head, Nivix gazed around the cosmos, trying to divine where the message had come from. Not from Seith, obviously; the flashy one would never try to undermine himself like that. And it seemed unlikely that Roe, or Maskelyne, or any of the others he'd interacted with would have sent it. Hmm... Well, it was just another mystery to be solved!

Wait a moment. Before the portal had opened and those beasts had come through, hadn't Seith wanted to speak to him about something? Maybe now was a good time to see what he wanted.

There was a flash of light and fire, and Nivix vanished. An instant later he reappered just outside of Seith's observatory and began to hammer on the door, seeking the god's attention. "Oi, Seith! You wanted to speak to me?"

Seith 23, 2

"Oi, Seith! You wanted to speak to me?"

Seith's hand stopped glowing. The conversion process was as done as possible. He had felt M'endar's presence and saw Ailish acting strangely. His own brother was trying to undermine him. Seith shook his head and answered the calls of his fellow god. He looked in the mirrors and saw what M'endar was up to, he was trying to lead the Aask astray. This wouldn't be allowed. Nivix had to be answered though.

The observatory was pristine now, Horror was sitting down, placated and calm, the demonic form slowly chipping away and becoming more pleasing to the eye. Seith wasn't sure if this was her original form, the work of Ailish or the work of himself.

"Yes, I do, please come in. Currently, I have busied myself with restoring the mind of this demon, if you could help me I would appreciate it. I hope you don't mind me projecting myself to talk to you though, there is someone that needs addressing. I imagine he tried to speak to you as well. My brother is tricky, that's for sure."

Seith teleported himself to Roe. The Aask began clamoring to him, he could feel their fear and worked to alleviate it. Working fast, Seith moved all but the 500 that M'endar had grabbed to various mountain tops, them cheering him for saving their lives. When the drop hit, it flooded most of the low ground and smashed many mountains, but the Aask were on the opposite side of the planet, and on high ground. They would not only survive, but thrive in this new land. Seith sent to them with a singular message.

"My brother probably wishes to subvert me, he granted you form but I made you who you are. Remember that as he will bring everything to ruin if he is allowed control."

M'endar was working fast, but seemed finished with his work so Seith teleported to his observatory again and moved his astral projection to M'endar's location. A talk was needed.

Nivix - 19, 1

"Yes, I do, please come in. Currently, I have busied myself with restoring the mind of this demon, if you could help me I would appreciate it. I hope you don't mind me projecting myself to talk to you though, there is someone that needs addressing. I imagine he tried to speak to you as well. My brother is tricky, that's for sure."

"Er... Okay?"

Nivix watched, more than a little surprised, as Seith teleported away from the Observatory, leaving behind only an illusion. He had assumed that Seith would have something to talk about, something that he might have at least mentioned before leaving like that.

While he waited for his host to return, Nivix poked around the Observatory, idly examining the various mirrors and accouterments. While he probably would have gone with a different color scheme, the chemister had to admire his compatriot's handiwork. It was truly a fancy little place with all kinds of neat little toys.

Nivix did not, however, have any attention to spare for the strange form in the center of the room. Halfway between monstrous abomination and demigod, it struck Nivix as bizarre but made little impact otherwise. Then again, this was hardly surprising, considering that it was just laying there. "I liked you better when you were trying to kill us," Nivix muttered as he paced by it.

With his patience quickly running out, Nivix awaited Seith's eventual return.

Seith, 23, 2

"Er... Okay?"

Seith knew that he only had Nivix's attention for a short time. There was no longer any moments to waste. A beam of light swallowed the projection and Seith stood in front of his fellow god once again. He spoke to Nivix.

"Someone had cast a flood on the planet and I needed to save the Aask, thank you for understanding friend. Now, on to the matter at hand." Seith began pacing slowly. "A short time ago, my brother, Melanthios, Zareth and Vantric all went into a library alone, and came out looking united. I had a bad feeling that something was going on with them and I am guessing they have made an alliance. This might not sound bad until you realize what they stand for. Zareth might not be all bad, but Vantric and my brother exist solely to obfuscate the truth and destroy knowledge. They can not be allowed to reign supreme in our universe, lest the consequences be the death of everything we created. While you might not appreciate order like Pentar does, I hope you can find a common goal in the furthering of knowledge that I strive for."

Seith turned to Ailish, feeling bad he had forgotten her for a moment. "The same deal applies to yourself Ailish. I would hope that as friends, we can stop this deadly alliance from taking control of the universe."

Seith pointed outwards. "I have an idea for a race, one that isn't perfect, perfection is impossible. No, but they would be curious, enlightened and would serve as protectors over our creations. They would need a planet and I am willing to spend a great deal of my power on them. Will you two help me?"

Nivix looked bored at Seith and replied.

"Oh, so that's what you wanted to talk about. Yeah, no, I'm gonna have to pass."

"Hm, may I ask why?" Seith questioned.

"It sounds boring."

Seith thought for a moment, then said.

"Quite the opposite actually. With an alliance, you, me and everyone else in it will be able to accomplish anything we could put our minds to. Think of the possiblities! They go much further than any one of us."

"And why would I want something like that?"

"Because, I know you want to be able to create more, to be able to make things that are bigger, better and more fun. This alliance will not only let you do that, but it will also protect anything you make from then being destroyed or altered by others without your permission."
Nivix looked mildly offended at that.

"...Are you implying that I'm incapable of defending my possessions? Are you saying that, not only am I not able to create anything I might desire, but I'm not even able to protect that which I can?"

"I am saying that if Melanthios, Zareth, M'endar and Vantric decided that Niv was problematic, they have the power within themselves to destroy it and neither I, nor you, have the power by ourselves to stop them. They are now a threat and if this threat isn't dealt with, the consequences will be dire for all of us, including you."
The thought of Niv being destroyed sent Nivix into a rage.

"Seith. Allow me to make one thing perfectly and utterly clear to you. If anyone, ANYONE, tries to cross me, I will destroy them. WITH ALL OF MY MIGHT AND RAGE, I will erase them from this world! If you dare to even THINK of harming my Niv, MY STAR MY PRIZE MY LIGHT MY CREATION, I will crush you until not even dust remains. Do not dare imply that I NEED your help."

"That is the thing though! I have no desire to harm it but the gods of which I speak, they wish to destroy everything! I know my brother and if he had his way, Niv wouldn't exist and neither would your stars. There isn't a single one of us that can defeat them in a one versus four combat scenario and the destruction of the Aack, the death of Niv, the ending of my observatory, the corruption of the garden, the death of the doves and everything we have made will happen if they go unchecked. Vantric seeks power, I will be the first they go after, then Pentar, then probably you. If you don't join me, they will either force you to join them, or kill you. They don't know compassion and I don't want them running this universe. We both stand for the advancement of knowledge but they would want everyone to be blind and in the dark. There is so much more to discover in our home and I need your help to ensure that you have all the space you need to conduct your research in peace and without intrusion."
Nivix looked a tad calmer, he sarcastically responded.

"So. Let me see if I've got this straight. I have three choices:

1. I join forces with you.

2. I join forces with them.

3. I die.

There are no other options, no other paths for me to take."

Seith kept his normal tone with Nivix.

"You could leave the plane, but they might try to follow you and if that happened then everything you created would die. I wish it hadn't come to this, I wanted us all to work together but they have brought this to where it is and I am only trying to keep the lot of us alive. You don't have to decide yet, but take a close look at my brother and Vantric, decide if they are who you would want to take orders from. Under the alliance I seek, we would all cooperate and attempt to keep all of us pleased and under the case that can't happen then compromises can be met. I know you value your freedom, but if Vantric ruled, and he would try to, everything you did would have to be run by him assuming you accepted their offer."

Nivix looked down for a moment, then moved towards the door.

"Hmph. Very well then. I will make my choice later."

"I hope you don't mind, but I also invited Maskeleyne to come here."

"Why would I mind? Go ahead and talk to him if you wish; I will take my leave."

"Thank you for considering."

"Mmmmph."

Seith kept his warm smile and turned to Ailish. "I understand this is a lot to take in, but will you join us?"

Melanthios 20AP, 1MP

Melanthios felt like he was being pushed forward, these annoying things had distracted him long enough. With his left hand he would create, while he was fighting with his right hand. He felt another race being created, he would not be the last one to make one. He focused his power, first he would make a world for them. The planet he saw before him was bigger then the other planets. He focused and used his magic. Then out of the magic, a planet was born. One of massive size and huge inner riches. Melathanios' magic had weaved a home for his race, a race yet to be born. Deep caverns glittered with crystals and semi-precious stones, while on the surface, deep veins of ore coursed through the mountains, waiting to be struck by pickaxes. Melanthios was pleased with the idea and its creation, a safe haven for his race, a rich home with abundant resources and immense size.

Brothers I humbly thank you for your help, but I am afraid I require your aid yet again. I promise I will make it up to the both of you. I plead for you to help me in creating my race and my planet. I know what I ask of you is a great deal, but I hope that you will be able to provide the help I need. Brothers, know that I am at your mercy. I can't do it on my own, I hope our bond is strong enough to persuade you to aid me yet again. There, the message had been sent, he hoped that they would provide the help he needed.

Now to think of the race he would create. They would be made in his image, they would be fast, smart and they would be able to shape the world using magic. He would make them in his own image, but unlike him they would get colors. Melanthios looked at his own hand which was completely black, it was such a dull color. He would give them a lively color, like the one that the other gods had. He would guide them, but he also needed leaders among them. There needed to be a chosen few who would talk with him.

He would share a little bit of his knowledge with the first generation. They would pass that knowledge on to the second generation, and eventually they would add their own knowledge. Melanthios smiled thinking about the creatures he was about to make. He made a model for what they would look like, in his mind. They would be made out of flesh and blood. He would give them a brilliant mind, and a tough body with strong muscles. They would be able to survive almost any situation with such gifts. But he would also give them the ability to resist illnesses and poisons, he had knowledge of snakes and the harm they could do. And even worse, plagues that had wiped out nations. He would not allow that fate to befall his people! They would be immune to such things. He also gave them the best senses he could think off. The vision off an eagle, and the hearing of a dolphin.

He wondered what else he had to offer them. But then he had a brilliant idea: Time, most mortals had short lives. But if he was to increase their genetic endurance, and make magic pump through their entire body they would be able to grow much older. He made them walk on 2 legs just like him, giving them 2 arms to make them able to use tools. He also made sure that the magic that coursed through their veins would give them power. They would be able to use their magic to shape the world in a way which they wanted. He also made sure that their magic would help them passively, their wounds would heal faster then any other race, since their magic core would repair their bodies if it got damaged. He would place them on a rich spot near water, wood, stone and iron. They would be able to build a life there. What would their race be called? He thought about it, eventually a name came to him. They would be called Dues Filli. It was a suitable name for what he was about to make. Now it was time for his mind and magic to do the rest. He stretched out his hands and made them, his children. He placed his children on their home planet, they would flourish there, Melanthios was sure of it.

M'endaxius - 21/30 AP, 1/2 MP

Its eyes narrowed as Seith scooped up the remaining Aask and placed them among the mountaintops. Shame, that wouldn't be enough as the wave of water slammed against them, some even spilling over as the power of the water eroded some of the mountains away. Surely it would stabilise with time, but the planet would be forever marked by the child god's actions. Something must be put in place to ensure that relative stability, a gift to to Aask perhaps. After all, Seith was not the one who went to save them as soon as the tear hit, and it would do well to remind the slimy race that M'endar was the one who had held them in its hands from the beginning, that M'endar had crafted them in mud, judging by eye whether the shape would be suitable or not. It was coming together to an idea. Gift... Hands... Eye... Those thoughts were running through its mind. But how would M'endar rope in the race to follow it when its brother was trying to do the same? Gift... Hands... Eye... Well, there was only one logical conclusion.

Even though its current was a mass of hands, cradling the Aask, it grew another. This one was different. Black muscles coiled it, clearly an arm more for taking lives than saving them, but that was not its purpose. No, it was intended for something else. With great effort M'endar ripped out its own eye and focus its power into it, making the eye grow in size and become more solid. Soon there was a lump of rock, with a crater where the pupil once was. M'endar smiled, surely more work would have to be done. But a later point, since M'endar had yet to address its audience.

This time, M'endar didn't whisper, this was an announcement to all of the Aack.

"Here is further proof of my devotion: I gift my eye to you. The Oculus Obscuritatis will watch over you for eternity."

Then, funnily enough, another message came, from Melanthios. Yet another request for aid.

"Brothers I humbly thank you for your help, but I am afraid I require your aid yet again. I promise I will make it up to the both of you. I plead for you help, in helping me create my race and my planet. I know what I ask of you is a great deal, but I hope that you will be able to provide the help I need. Brothers, know that I am at your mercy. I can't do it on my own, I hope our bond is strong enough to persuade you to aid me yet again."

M'endar smiled, of course it would help an ally of his, the words were already on the page, so to speak. The race would be witty and clever, enough to deceive one each other with guile and trickery. M'endar gave the essence of chaos to the planet as with the stars that had previously been created. It then turned back to the creation of Roe's moon, that would be a truly great gift, it would not be one of those dull lumps of rock, it would reflect the light of Niv, it would be an obsidian gem in the the night sky. It would be a potential home for the Aack who would seek solace from the harshness of Roe...

...In other words, a glinting, winking, hive of lies and corruption and chaos. Just what the race was originally created for.

Zareth 22, 1

Brothers I humbly thank you for your help...

Melantios went on in greater detail as to his plea to help him create a species and world to call his own. What is everyone's rush today? Zareth thought to himself. Melantios wasn't even done fighting that terror yet and he was already trying to make a fresh world with his free hand! Still he had to admire the guts it took. He looked out over the freshly born space and drank in the scene of utter chaos unfolding in front of him. His brothers were doing battle. The beasts from the gate were running riot. And chaos and destruction were breaking out on the planet Roe. All the while M'endar was busy painting a jewel in the sky over the planet surface.

"The Aask!" He gasped, the first mortal creatures given life and they were about to be decimated before they could even take their first steps into the future. Creation seemed to slow down. What could he do? He had to make a decision fast.

It didn't take him long to do it. He had faith that his brother could take care of himself. His first priority had to be to look after the mortals under their care. But to do so meant he had to be in more than one place at once. Can I even do that?

"Of course I can, I'm the god of death." He smirked to himself. It felt good to finally embrace it.With a burst of power he split himself into pieces, letting each one take flight like great carrion birds. His divided essence flew in formation for a moment before breaking apart to find their charges. As part of him flew into the Roe's orbit it lashed and battered at the ball of ice that was hurtling towards it, the ice was damaged but this was not his full strength but this piece of him had done all it could. He could only hope that the planet would survive. All the while another went to M'endar, mixing itself with his magical power to help bring a sense of beauty to the shadow god's creation.
Meanwhile his final fragments flew out to Melanthios lending their own power to his. They let themselves share his vision of a strong, majestic race and the planet they could call home. They were a fine creation and he happily added his own touches to them. A majestic form and the long days he had promised in the library so long ago. For the Planet he made sure that the ground itself would dance and flow like a painting, but nothing can be completely perfect, they would need challenges to overcome, even if it came from the world itself.

With their work done the pieces of him converged on Seith's observatory, forming back into his horned, human looking form. He was not sure how much impact his actions had had but he would have to content himself with knowing that he had done all he could in the time he had. His mind was racing, this felt like the first time he had truly tested his strength.

He turned to the glowing form of Seith. "Did you call me earlier?"

Ailish 1, 26

By the time her lips left the stranger, Ailish saw the figure shape and contort. The fluctuations brought its face so much further from the ones she remembered. The goddess tried to hold its face in vain, but could do nothing; for all her efforts it may not be the same as before. And why should it? Something had affected Horror that could not be described. It would no longer be the same. She could only hope that it would still remember...

"I liked you better when you were trying to kill us."

A harsh glare was directed to the chemister. He spoke of things he could not try to understand, and the conversation was stuck on controlling purgatory. She wanted her fellows to leave with her, but each step was marred in stubborn arrogance and apprehension. Out of the three gods only Ailish stayed close to tend to Oiudls'Llu... or whoever it would become. From the corner of her ear she heard the other two converse about a coming war, and felt her face tighten in frustration. Her attention was firmly on the shifting figure. She noticed an emerald tear fall from its eye, and instinctively she collected it before it hit the ground. Don't let the two tears mix.

'Everything has its purpose; even Sin is meant to give strength and compassion in adversity.' Indeed...

"I understand this is a lot to take in, but will you join us?"

Her eyes returned to Seith. In the faintest sense, she heard the conversation between him and the chemister play out, and the old sentiments returned.

"You and the others would be fighting over purgatory. And there's still the other six out there." She could only hope he would listen...

Eldarwen 14 AP, 0 MP

Eldarwen saw Zareth leave, even though she wasn't sure why. She turned to the hunter. "I will be right back. Watch over your sisters."

She thought it odd that this beast would now be guarding her daughters, but mostly because she had faith enough in it to leave them alone together. The queen left her garden, searching for her friend, until she found him at Seith's observatory. She teleported in her flurry of leaves and flowers, appearing next to him. While her reason for following him seemed unclear to her, she was reminded that Seith had called her before. Now the battle was dying down slightly, so maybe they had time to discuss what he wanted to talk about before.

"I am back." She told Seith.

Vantric: 23, 2

The creature backed up and lunged forward as Vantric and the warrior balanced fighting it and slowly wore it down. The creature exuded had a venom of some type dripping from its claws. It was curious. The slavering beast lunged toward him. Vantric backed away, parrying it's strike, though he instantly felt worse. Something about the creature was strange. It was a similar feeling he had during the fight with Hatred. The creatures exuded some malevolent force.

This creature seemed as a scourge, a plague of some kind. It weakened its foes and everything else around him. Interesting. Thoughts of how to harness this creature's power circulated in his mind. He ducked another blow. Yes. This creature was very interesting.

"My birth brother, Seith, lies weakened. If you wish to take advantage of this, then do so. For surely when he recovers, he will seek to control everything again." A voice echoed in his mind.

What? Someone was communicating with him. That voice, or lack thereof. Where did it come from? Who did it come from? But Seith...weakened? Vantric smiled, that opened up a world of possibilities.

The creature backed up, giving ground as Vantric and the warrior closed in. Things would need to pick up once he finished with this monster.

Seith

Seith turned around and faced the god of death. He had allied himself with M'endar, perhaps he didn't understand who his brother was. This would be fixed now. "Hello there Zareth, glad you could make it."

Zareth smiled in response, giving a slight wave to seith. "The pleasure is all mine" He looked around at the array of reflections surrounding them "This is... an impressive home you have made here"

"Thank you, it took a lot of effort, and I appreciate your help in making it happen. I did actually want to talk about something important."

Seith turned outside and pointed to the forming moon. "I am aware you have allied yourself with my brother, and possibly Vantric. Yet, you share qualities similar to them only in name, are you aware of who they truly are?"

Zareth raised an eyebrow sceptically. "Do any of us know who we truly are? How much time has actually passed since our birth? I am only just finding my way in this creation." He motioned to Allishe "This young goddess claims none of us are what we think we are. Truth be told Seith I envy those who are so sure of their role in things to come."

Eldarwen did remember who she was. "I know who I am, this may be the first life for you, but it's the second for me. My purpose has not changed. I will not let it change."

Seith looked back at Zareth and Eldarwen. "Oh, you made it too, perfect. Some of us, Zareth, have made our personalities apparent. Vantric and my brother have done a good job showing theirs. You on the other hand, I have watched you and you are a curious combination. I think you want to create, but your power would make you different. I want you to know that just because you look like them, and have similar powers, you don't need to join my brother, Melanthios and Vantric."

"And just what do you think they are?"

"Vantric is ambitious. He wishes to rule over all with an iron fist, to be the supreme lord of the galaxy and have his will be enforced with no input from others. My brother wants simply to destroy. All that fall into his fold will be based around this mentality of destruction. I don't know what Melanthios wants honestly, I am much more concerned about Vantric and my brother. I won't ask you to tell me what you agreed upon, I have a good guess and I don't support lying, but my biggest concern, is that at some point Vantric or M'endariux will attempt to kill Pentar and myself, along with anyone who defies them. You showed mercy to that demon, an action that requires compassion. If they attack us, I would like for you to not side with them."

Eldarwen wondered if Seith was right about Zareth, and that he wanted to create. "I do not care about the others goals, as long as they do not harm me or my children. I will say this though; I created the planets, I made the garden plane. Unless you plan on asking Nivix, there's no one else that has proved themselves as much of creators."

Everyone here has tried their hand at creating something from the ether... except me. It is hardly surprising that I might want to try my hand at it at some point. As for what else you talk about... such violence, M'endar and Vantric have shown me nothing but kindness. They have done nothing but try to add to this void and protect what has been made.

"Vantric makes a fortress to hide in, M'endariux tries to spread a plague to everything on the planet. This is just step one, you can feel free to trust them and I don't ask you attack them now, I hope I might be wrong but something tells me I am not. Will you help me if they resort to violence?"

"I was merely suggesting, that if you wanted help to create, the ones to ask would be the creators of this universe. Those who has proven themselves the most competent. That would be me, and Nivix. Going to anyone else would be foolish, if you truly want to make awe-inspiring creations."

Seith turned to Eldar. "Please do keep in mind, you had help with your planets and Nivix with his stars. In fact I aided greatly in both. We must work together for these creations or none of them would be possible."

"I am aware of that, but his current allies did nothing. That is what I was getting at."

"Yes, indeed, you are right in that case."

Zareth turned to Eldarwen, his eyes filled with sadness. "The universe is not even young and already there is talk of destroying each other. What good is creation when we cannot even exist with each other?"

She could see the sadness in his eyes, and would normally not have cared much. Perhaps it was the fact that he was the father of the hunter, their son, that made her care a tiny bit. "There are always those who will oppose good. I do not like it anymore than you, and this is why I keep to my domain. I would not hurt another, unless they hurt me, but some might see me as an obstacle. I can't stand alone against that many, and while I may not like Seith, he's at least tried to make friends. Your allies keep to themselves, how do I know they won't try to take me out of the picture?"

"Because I would not let them! I would never let harm come to you!" Zareth was surprised by the fire in his voice

Seith smiled at the outburst. Compassion was abundant in this one. "Then accept my offer. Dissuade them from violence and if it comes to it, join me should they resort to violence to meet their ends. If you are right about them, they won't mention it and you won't have to think about it, but the thing is, M'endariux already made a move. I could tell when I talked to Nivix and Ailish. He wants me dead as can be and won't stop there. If you accept, I will aid you in creating any way I can, I promise."

She raised an eyebrow, again Zareth surprised her. He seemed to care more for nature than she had expected. "I am glad to hear that. Know then, that should your allies attack Seith I will stand on his side. I would rather fight for someone I don't like, than watch others get hurt because I did nothing. I doubt they will care much for who is on his side, but as long as he does me no wrongs, I have no reason to change my decision."

Zareth felt it was time to leave, he said to Seith. "I am not one for politics, the other gods offered me friendship, brotherhood and I accepted. If any other offered it to me I would do the same. I will not accept allies. I will accept friends, brothers, sisters and anything more that people would wish to be to me. I am not taking sides because as I see it, there are no sides. In the end my first and greatest concern must be to the care of the mortals that have been made here. Seith, you reached out for my friendship. You have it; as done anyone else who needs it. Now if you'll excuse me, no doubt I am needed elsewhere." And with that he left, fading into mist.

The Storyteller

Thus the chaos of the misguided portal began to come to a close as the last of the Seven were routed by the new gods. Madness was beset by doves and imprisoned in Maskelyne's Necronomicon, destined to forever more encircle Niv and Roe with her divine groom. Melanthios' bean shot at Hunger was simply shrugged off but M'endar's attack wasn't so easily blocked and the creature was slain.

Upon the planet Eld, together Zareth and Eldarwen used their combined powers to convert Despair into a son for themselves, the one who would go by the name of the Hunter. Like all beings however he was not destined to be perfect and in time many a horrifying tale would be told in most mortal societies about him, whispered in fear at night around the camp fires. Ailish and Seith too managed to successfully convert Horror into his original form, who would also serve as the leader of Seith's new race.

Meanwhile in the gardens of the Hallowed Halls, Olek's impassioned assault in Roe's defence didn't quite work as planned: his new mace disintegrated in front of his eyes, a fatal flaw as a result of the excessive magic put into the weapon. Disease, sensing the opportunity, leapt up from Roe towards Olek, it's claws outstretched but before it ever reach him it hit something else... Tsuranote. To this day it is not known exactly where he came from or why he stepped in, maybe his joyous heart felt pity for the child god, maybe he felt the fiery need to fight alongside Olek. Whatever the reason, the blow from Disease sent him tumbling and both god and creature fell straight into the portal besides them, never to be seen again.

Even while gods clashed though, creation had not halted. Roe's tears from the hurt inflicted on him by Disease became the comets we still see on rare occasions today and purely by luck one did something far more important... it brought the oceans to the planet Roe. This was done at great cost, even with the combined efforts of M'endexius, Seith and Zareth almost a fifth of all aack were drowned, in time their bodies forming worms and such. Fortunately there were no other beings upon the planet at that time to share their fate. M'endar's actions in particular were inspirational enough that from that day forth, the aack would consider M'endar their Patron God.

Many thousands of kilometres away upon the planet Eld, the nature goddess Eldarwen wasn't sitting idle either. With the assistance of Zareth she created a wild race of green women who would be skilled at the druidic arts and protect their forested planet. Melanthios also was busy, he created a planet filled with riches on the inside but otherwise fairly similar to Roe in climate, with extremes of both hot and cold depends on what latitude one stood at.

All actions in this post were ordained by Berenzen. Now that the Seven are defeated, each god gets one more action before the age ends, assuming they have enough AP left. Use it wisely.

Vantric: 23, 2

Vantric backed away from the creature, Disease. The battle was going out of their favor, badly. The warrior's weapon was gone, destroyed somehow, and he found himself unarmed as the monstrosity closed in. Vantric attempted another slash at the beast, but was turned aside, he was not a fighter, and facing the creature head on simply wasn't going well. He dodged a close blow as Disease lashed out again. This was not going well. At all.

He attempted to stay calm, cool. They needed to be a plan, something to keep the creature at bay, something to slow it down. As he frantically thought, Vantric noticed something he hadn't before, or rather, someone he hadn't. One of the others had arrived, the red one who's name escaped him. He hadn't much time to take in or understand the other god's presence before Disease launched another attack. It leaped high into the air, diving down toward the Vantric and the warrior, he braced for the assault, but something unexpected happened.

The red god ran forward, placing himself between them and the monster. The collision sent both figures tumbling across the garden. Both clashed and struck at each other as Vantric and the warrior looked on, shocked for a moment. By the time either prepared to react it was too late. The struggle between the god and monster made it back to the portal, and both fell back into it, beyond the bounds of existence.

Vantric stood for a moment, dumbfounded. He certainly hadn't been planning on that, fortunate though it was. After a moment, he sheathed his weapons. "Well, that was unexpected." He said aloud, to no one in particular.

Zareth 22, 1

With his business in the observatory done with, Zareth headed back to the planet Eld. Somewhere on the edge of his mind he felt a new presence. It felt like a shadow of himself but part of it was different, it reminded him of Eldarwen. There could only be one explanation. Despair was awake. When he arrived at the clearing he had left the fallen demon he found it standing tall and proud.

The black, waxy skin had melted away. Now the creature looked distinctly human... with a few twists. It was defiantly a he now. And although he looked distinctly humanoid, two arms, two legs and so forth; his body was far more lithe and powerful then that of a human male. A mop of long, tangled, chestnut hair cascaded down to his shoulders. A pair of bright turquoise coloured eyes shone out from between strands of it. "You have your mother's eyes." Zareth commented. "And apparently her ears." He smiled, tapping the long elven ears poking out from his child's mane.

"Then how do you explain these?" Asked the newly formed demigod, hesitantly touching the pair of antlers sprouting from his forehead. Zareth touched the tips of his own pointed horns. "I suppose that's a mixture of the two of us." He replied with a laugh.

"Good to know." The new born hunter siad, brushing his hair from his face. Revealing the sharp animalistic features that defined his face. he smiled, showing off rows of fangs. He was made to be the perfect predator. His senses were sharp, his body was fast, strong and could move as silently as a soft summer wind. The hunter picked up his bow. "So this is what I am now? Your dog to find and track those you would have destroyed?"

"We will see what role you play in the time to come." Said Zareth. "The worlds are young and you are younger still. For now why not get used to your new form, your new life. Enjoy them. While we are asking questions, what should I call you? Your old name hardly seems appropriate any more." At this point the young hunter was climbing the great trees of Eld and darting around from branch to branch as he circled the clearing. "Are you even listening, did you have any other names before you were Despair?" The death god called out.

The hunter landed in front of him. His jovial air all but gone. "My name was KLUduci. And no. that life was like one great haze. I wont lie, I enjoyed the chaos I caused. I remember when my eyes opened to the darkness of that world and I despaired at what I had been born into, and you know what they say, misery loves company. So that's what I did I took peoples greatest sadnesses and turned them in on themselves. Suns were the talk of legends where I was from. you shed that life from me and for that I'm thankful. KLUduci is dead. Who ever I am now I say that they are some one new. Full of life and vigour. You're my 'father' why don't you name me?"

This took Zareth by surprise still he relished the idea. This hunter was his first creation in his way and here they were having a conversation. He though hard on what memories and knowledge had been given, of Eldarwen and the things she had made. Then it came to him. "Carnivox, you shall be known as Carnivox the hunter and mortals will tell stories of your exploits far and wide!"

This riled up the newly named Carnivox. "Ha! I like it! Let them sit round camp fires and marvel at my deeds, let them fear every passing shadow lest it be The Hunter, come to claim his prize!" He let out a mighty roar and for a split second his face shifted. It was no longer the sharp bestial thing he wore before. His antlers seemed sharper and his entire head had changed into that of a snarling wolf. His howl roared over the tree tops and filled the dense forest. Then as if it had never happened, he was back to the way he was before. Carnivox looked at Zareth, puzzled. "Did I just..."

"Yes you did." The ghost father chuckled. "A gift from me, consider it a face to wear when you are out on the hunt. But when you are in the company of gods I want you to wear the more humanoid face you wear now. It can be difficult to talk with an elongated skull."

Carnivox grinned from ear to ear as his head changed back into that of a black furred wolf, his antlers twisting until they formed vicious points, like a wild crown. He slung his bow over his back and darted into the forest, quickly disappearing into the gloom.

"And play nicely with the mortals!" Zareth called after him. I'm sure he'll calm down after a time, it is his first day after all.

Eldarwen 7 AP, 0 MP

She waved at Seith, before a wind came from within the garden and tore her body apart, carrying the leaves from the garden back to the planet where she had left her daughters with the hunter. She could hear a roar as she entered the atmosphere, and she hurried up, but only to see Zareth talking with the hunter. Eldarwen appeared a little distance away from them.

Her daughters were blinking in the sunlight, unused to its strong light and stumbling about, unused to walking. They would learn in time, but the hunter didn't seem to make it better, as some of them cowered in fear. She smiled, knowing that they would not be the only race to fear him. At least they didn't seem to mind the death god standing there as well.

Eldarwen entered the clearing after her son had left. He seemed eager to begin his own story.

"There's no need to play nice with mortals." She said in disagreement with Zareth, but wasn't sure if her son could hear it or not. She made one of the vines of a nearby tree pick up one of the Ekiruru women, who let out a yelp, as she was hung upside down in the clearing. "They are called mortals for a reason. They are weak and easily frightened."

The woman hanging upside down did look a bit scared, but she probably believed that Eldarwen would do her no harm. The others were looking at their creator. Well, there was no need to make an example out of someone so early, especially when she done nothing wrong.

"If your flaw had been something else than kindness, I would have offered her as a sacrifice."

The woman didn't seem scared at the prospect of being sacrificed to the death god, at the whim of the queen. Eldarwen smirked and dropped her to the ground. Those who became battleborn would have an advantage if they didn't fear death, but for the rest it might be a disadvantage. There was a reason to fear it. Bravery could cost the life of these daughters of hers.

She put one of her arms over Zareth's shoulders and began walking away from the clearing, as they walked they could see more green hands sprouting from the ground, or they had already emerged from the soil.

"I need your help, to create a portal which will withstand the ages. It will lead to one of your own creations, to which my daughters would travel on a pilgrimage to honour our alliance." She saw a large enough tree, and walked right into it with Zareth. When they stepped through it they were no longer on Eld, but in the Ghost father's crag on Roe. Behind them was the tree she had planted before, after attacking their son. "In return, I would help you create anything you wish for right here. Maybe a temple, a ghost city or your own race."

She laughed, and hoped he would consider doing something here, even if she would help him either way. It would prevent mortals entering Eld from Roe, if they were wise enough to fear death. Her daughters weren't and thus they would enter a valley of death with grins on their faces.

"You did mention that you wanted to create, so, what say you?"

Seith

Seith and Ailish were alone again. The others had left for a small while, though Seith did expect a few more to arrive at some point. He turned to Ailish and said. "The conversion process is done, you can talk to it now. I must leave again for a short time." With that, Seith dissolved into a beam of light and appeared over Eldarwen's planets.

His children, the Ents had been getting used to their powers. They could command their fellow plants in almost any way they wished, but had been given the compassion and wisdom to use their powers for good. If Eldarwen was the gardener of the universe, they were the helpful animals that a farmer would put to aid their process. Now, they had a job. Eldarwen had refused to put plants and trees on the planet, but that wouldn't stop Seith from having his children fill the void left.

"Children, I have a task for you, it's a simple one with your powers but you must all command the plants under your control to fire seeds and spores directly at Roe. The planet lacks plants and the addition of them is needed. This is a great service to the gods."

With that, all of the planets began moving, the trees raised their arms resulting in hundreds of billions of seeds and spores being sent down to Roe. Not all would make it, but with so many aimed by Ents with the guiding hand of a god, this wouldn't be a hard task. Seith used his light to keep the seeds from being frozen in the void of space and a great deal of them made their way to the planet Roe.

With that, Seith had one task remaining, one to pre-occupy his time for a while. But first he needed to finish chatting with the others.

Roe - 20, 1

Roe gasped a sigh of relief as Disease took off, his arms were covered in scratches and bites from the void creature's assault but a moment later, they returned to their healthy selves again. The young god was just glad to be alive, he had missed Tsuranote's lightning fast intervention and so he looked upon Olek with a new sense of gratitude. His trademark grin returned and he ran up to Olek, throwing his arms around the larger god affectionately.

"Thanks for saving me... again, I'm Roe," the child enthused, gazing up at Olek with puppy dog eyes, searching every nook and cranny of the warrior for something interesting. He noticed something small held within Olek's breastplate, the homunculus the god had been created with.

"What's that?" he asked curiously, pointing up at the tiny figure with a stubby finger.

Nivix - 13, 1

Seething as he left the Observatory, Nivix took to the skies above the Hallowed Court. With a mere thought, his body hurtled upwards, above Eldarwen's Garden, above Pentar's Court, above the Library and the Ascension and the Entertainment Hall, moving at an ever increasing speed until he soared a mile above the various venues. Slowing to a halt, the god let out a furious roar, shouting his displeasure to the vastness that spread out before him. How dare Seith attempt to threaten him?! How dare the others try to scheme against him?! How dare they, how dare they, HOW DARE THEY!

His anger raging within him, Nivix tore forward once again, leaving the Court behind and charging towards Niv. Hardly noticing the heat and flames that engulfed him, the chemister dove straight into the heart of the celestial inferno, his movement stopping only when he reached the star's center. There, basking in the warmth and light provided by his creation, he began to shout and rage, venting his fury in a single, unending tantrum.

For what seemed to be an eternity, he cursed his fellows. If they would dare to turn against him, to strike against him as Seith had described, then he would not hesitate to strike back with all of his force. He would shatter them with steel, burn them with flame, plunge them into the heart of one of his stars, destroy them without any shred of decency or mercy! He would not rest until all they had built or cherished was crushed and reduced to ash, until their very existence was wiped from this world! Let them stand against him if they dared; he would make them pay for it with their very lives!

Like all things, however, Nivix's anger faded with time. No one had actually made a move against him yet; in hindsight is was quite silly to get so worked up over something that only might end up happening. Hmmph, damn that Seith, getting him so riled up...

As his rage faded, Nivix was once more overwhelmed by the urge to create. He had already forged Niv and the countless other stars that brought light to the vast emptiness, but it wasn't enough. He wanted more, MORE! He didn't want to just see the light or feel the warmth, he wanted to know what caused it, what formed it and made it so that it kept repeating!

He wanted to know!

...And if he wanted to know, then he needed a place to study. A place where he could not be disturbed, a place where his investigations and experiments could continue without interruption or distractions. A secret place, a sanctum for him and him alone. And where better to put such a place but in the heart of Niv itself?

A smile slowly spread across Nivix's face as he began to concentrate, willing various metals and materials into existence around him, substances that could survive the intense heat that surrounded them. Sprawling plans and blueprints began to blossom in his mind, each one rejected and replaced by even more complicated one. Undoubtedly this task would take quite a bit of time and all of his skill, but he would gladly give it all he had! Heh, let the others try to compete with this, his sanctuary!

Zaeth 22, 1

Seeing one of the Ekiuru women dangled upside down like a rag doll was certainly an amusing spectacle but the intention behind it was a little disquieting. "If your flaw had been something else than kindness, I would have offered her as a sacrifice." Said Eldarwen.

I didn't realise that was a flaw."That wont be necessary." He said waving of the idea. "I'm sure I'll be seeing her later." So this is where Carnivox gets his wild streak.

After Eldarwen had had her fun she put her arm around his shoulder. An action that set his heart aflutter. At least it would have if he was bound by such things as biology. In this case it set his 'essence' aflutter for lack of a better word. It felt good to stroll through the lazy light of the forest world with a companion. Until recently most of the gods had kept each other at a distance. This as nice. He knew it was early yet but considering all they had together he didn't think it outrageous to think that there was a bond forming between them. This time walking through the tranquil wilderness with a beautiful woman by his side, watching as the fresh new lives sprang into being, it was a possibly the best experience of his relatively short life.

But all good things must come to an end and eventually Eldarwen got down to business. "I need your help, to create a portal which will withstand the ages. It will lead to one of your own creations, to which my daughters would travel on a pilgrimage to honour our alliance." Pilgrimages now that was an idea. Then before he realised where she was leading him the two of them stepped into a tree and walked out the other side. But they weren't on Eld any more, this was Roe. Tree portals. I should have known.

"In return, I would help you create anything you wish for right here. Maybe a temple, a ghost city or your own race." The tree goddess said.

Zareth looked around the canyon, its walls reaching high into the sky. He didn't have a chance to really look at it before, during the fight with Despair. He had to laugh, he had struck the planet with more force then he had thought. The earth had given way so easily. "If only Carnivox was here. He'd love to see the damage he left. As for your proposal." He said turning to Eldarwen as he casually knocked the great tree with his knuckles, sending a ripple of his own power through its trunk. "You never need to offer me something in return. This tree will outlive men and empires alike."

That was not his main concern at the moment though. Along the top of the canyon walls he could see a collection of small lights forming. He knew what they were instinctively. "Still I may have to look you up on that offer soon. But first I have something to see to. Excuse me." With that he took flight to the top of the canyon. The lights shied away from him as he landed.

They were Aask. But not like the others, their physical forms were gone. All that remained of them was the part of them that still clung to life. Clinging so desperately that it could not accept what had happened. But it remembered. It remembered the water, the feeling of being swept away, of being helpless. It remembered struggling and panicking as its body filled with water and gasped for air. All he knew of the Aask was from when he had seen M'endar creating them in the garden. He remembered them being small blob like creatures. They were peculiar looking but pleasant little things. Echoes of their memories permeated into his mind. Everything was so new, so curious, so exciting. Now all of that was replaced by fear.

Their final moments still haunted them and this new state of being was just as terrifying. One of them worked up the courage to float up towards him. its bal like form fluttering on the breeze as it struggled to remember what it looked like. Nudged at him, agitated. PArt of its body language seemed as if it was trying to speak but couldn't remember its own voice. but that was just speculation. Can the Aask speak? Zareth was ashamed to say he didn't know. He reached out to cup the little spirit in his hands. Stroking it and cooing like a parent over a crying child.

"It's alright, it's alright I've got you. You're safe now, you're all safe now." He looked out over the group, more were coming out of the distance as if they were attracted by his presence. The words of his creator voice rang in his ears. This was it, he knew what he had to do. "I'm sorry I failed you, it wont happen again. I swear."

He went back into the canyon, the ghost Aask in tow. He walked to the far wall where the canyon ended in a sheer cliff face. He let his voice call out across the distance like an arrow. Only two people were meant to hear this.

"Eldarwen, Melanthios. I am about to ask a lot of you. I am about to undertake possibly the greatest task any of us has. One I cannot accomplish alone. This will be my great creation, my legacy for the mortal world. I ask the two of you because I know I can trust you beyond doubt. I know this sounds outrageous but I ask you to lend me your power to mould to my purpose. More importantly, I ask you to trust me."

With a deep breath he drove his fingers into the canyon face and wrenched it apart like a man opening a pair of curtains. A flood of light burst forth from beyond the earth. This was the power of creation given form. Every god among the stars is going to feel this. Zareth let out a great roar that echoed all through out creation as he poured every ounce of himself into this new creation. He would make a safe place for these Aask and all mortal who followed them. A kingdom and a home for the dead to call their own. They would be safe forever. He would never fail them again!

He spread his arms as wide as he could, letting his power rush into the chasm and through that flow throughout all of existence and carry on forever like a great river. Then, just as exertion reached its peak, all was silent.

The universe held its breath.......................................................................................................................................................... and then it screamed.

The bravery of the fire god was near instantaneous, but Olek saw enough to know that a sacrifice had been made to save him. As his rescuer had disappeared in the portal he had felt message, a wordless pulse of courage and joy that had filled him with awe. For a moment he stood, motionless and silent, honoring the gift he had been given by the being he would never know.

Someone approaching. He raised his head, tensed, ready to fight, but instead small one ran into him, embracing him. \For a moment Olek remained tense, but then he though of the fire-god and his heart softened. As it did so, he armor lost it some of its weight, and the spikes and sharp edges faded in place of smoother plate-mail. He raised an arm awkwardly, and returned the hug.

"Thanks for saving me... again, I'm Roe" the little one said. As Roe stared up into Olek's eyes he found himself lost for words; and was about to experiment like last time when the Roe pointed at the being he held near to his heart.

"What's that?" Roe asked, and this times the words came easily. He reached up and scooped the tiny creature free of its niche. As he held it out, he allowed it to float above his palm, displaying it's form.

"Man" he said, simply.

"This being is the last of it's kind, but I know it is also the first of something magnificent. The race that it spawns will spread its beautiful, fragile glory across the stars, and I will revel in their dreams for as long as this world shall live." The words came easily, flowing from his tongue, but he felt like action would demonstrate better

With that Olek stepped sideways and away from the Garden, and away into the solar system. Examining the planets, he identified the on most suited to his creatures, and stepped again to its surface. Setting the homunculus before him, he sat crossed legged and began to focus.

Vantric: 23, 2

Vantric turned back to the warrior, it seemed to be conferring with the child, Roe. It seemed to have something with it, but he didn't care enough about it to bother asking. He simply walked away, as he had intended to do after the battle. There were things he had been planning, things he needed to do. Poisoned grass crunched down as Vantric strode out of the garden. He passed blackened, twisted trees and monstrosities corrupted by their brief touch with the monsters' power. It was sad, the garden was so lovely, he considered.

He made it out of the garden back in front of his own fortress, the Grand Ascension. It was good to see his home had weathered the assault of those monsters, he didn't want it to end up like Eldarwen's garden. There was still so much work to do, now that the monsters had been dealt with, he could get down to the project he had envisioned, sentient life. He smiled, now things would get interesting. Overhead, the new world, Roe, was innocent of his plans. He smiled, it was time for Roe to be graced with his presence.

Vantric levitated upward, and a dark shade enveloped him, carrying him away. He arrived on Roe a moment later as the shade deposited him on the ground. The soft grass cushioned his descent. He breathed in the fresh air. It smelled similar to how Eldarwen's garden was before it was corrupted. Similar, but not quite. Nothing like that would exist again, he thought. Sad. He put that thought aside as he walked the new world. The soft wind blew through the plains behind Vantric as he journeyed. He walked far across the continent, and teleported across much of it as well, to the far beaches where the new water was lapping up against the land, he traveled to the furthest icy poles and the arid deserts, at last he ended his journeys at the base of a mountain on the border of a great forest. Vantric sat down and contemplated.

Overhead, the sun, Niv, began its descent in the west, and was soon shrouded. This would be the perfect place, the perfect time. Here, in the shadow of this mountain. The thoughts he had swirling around in his head previously had now taken a definite shape. Yes. This would be where his people were born, where things would begin. Vantric rose, thrust his hands forward. "Now come forth." He said, focused, felt his power flow through him. "Come forth." They would be a people modeled after his own virtues; ambitious, cunning, ruthless. "Come forth." He said one final time, "Lainir."

Eldarwen 7, 0

Zareth did as she had asked, and told her that she never needed to give him anything in return. "That's not how it works, my friend. I will not be indebted to anyone."

He then went on to fiddle with some creatures, at first she didn't get what he was doing with them, but then she realized that they were probably dead. While she would not usually have been able to see the dead, maybe she could see them now because death himself was so close or because the canyon had been created with the power of death.

"Eldarwen, Melanthios. I am about to ask a lot of you. I am about to undertake possibly the greatest task any of us has. One I cannot accomplish alone. This will be my great creation, my legacy for the mortal world. I ask the two of you because I know I can trust you beyond doubt. I know this sounds outrageous but I ask you to lend me your power to mould to my purpose. More importantly, I ask you to trust me."

She rolled her eyes, or would have, if they hadn't consisted of pure magic. As if her tasks weren't as great as his. Yeah, right... Still, she had said that she would help him, and when he opened the canyon face she was blinded by the light. Eldarwen put her arm over her eyes, and heard him shout. She assumed that this would be hell, where mortals deserved to go after death. It was better than having them drift around as ghosts at least. How could she help with creating something like the underworld? Her preconceived notion was that it was a bad place, where mortals should suffer in an eternity and even if she didn't like mortals, only humans deserved such an end.

This would be better than she had expected though, as the tree portal to Eld was right in front of the entrance he was creating. What sane mortal would willingly travel this close to the underworld?

She thought of ways to help. Death had always seemed unimportant to her, until the day she had been killed. Before that she had considered herself immortal, which had been proven wrongly. Mortals became sad when their friends died, and some even forgave their enemies after they had died. Forgiveness, it gave her an idea. She didn't want to carry scars of a past life, into the future of this world. She didn't want to feel the need of revenge. It was an ugly feeling to have towards old friends.

Eldarwen channeled her magic into her staff and removed the arm from her eyes, then she did a sweeping motion towards the ground with the staff. Countless of transparent bushes and smaller plants were summoned. At first they were motionless, then some of them pulled out instruments such as trumpets and drums, which they could carry. Some of them were carrying baskets. They were ghosts of a past life and creatures who deserved better than her scorn. They began moving towards the light of the gateway in unison, while singing and playing their instruments.

The kami would serve nature in death, but free from all mortal plights. They were already dead so long ago. She wondered how they had died, if the end of the galaxy had been their end, or if they had been helpless against the advancement of the other races without her.

"I am sorry..." She said and shed a lonely tear. One of them turned to look at her, before hitting the drum on her chest with a smile and turning back to the light.

The march of the forest spirits. Eldarwen followed them into the light coming from the gateway. She made a pathway of grass for them to walk on inside, as they entered a different plane. Those with baskets started throwing seeds around them as they entered, which grew into flowers almost as soon they landed. She expanded the grassy plain, and they threw more flowers.

She had a distant memory of an extravagant tree, that was not green, but pink. Eldarwen made some of the seeds the spirits threw grow into cherry blossom trees. It didn't take long before the underworld was filled with flowers and cherry blossom trees. The kami continued marching though.

She wondered where they were going, when they stopped and formed a circle. Their song entered a crescendo. She would claim this spot for her daughters and the spirits. Water fell from her staff and became a lake, on the lake she put boats that were powered by magic. They wouldn't need anyone to row for them to move. The marching band broke off into two groups, one group entered some of the boats and the other went off to march through the garden.

It wasn't corrupted yet, and she knew that her daughters would find peace here.

Ailish 1, 26

Much time had passed, but finally the stranger's image settled. It looked like some of her fellow gods and goddess, but only in the vaguest sense. The short golden hair had grown to wispy ivory locks, and the hard facial features softened to a more pleasing persuasion. Ailish noticed wings to the stranger's side that could stretch to cover itself, yet were not really there; perhaps an illusion of wings to lull someone into comfort. But this impression was shattered upon seeing its face again; there was nothing wrong with it, but from its lips the goddess noticed fangs protruding from its mouth, and red smudges around its eyes.

She could barely believe if this figure was the same person from her memories. But her apprehensions melted at the stranger's eyes. Red eyes met two glittering aquamarines, and what she found in them was unmistakable. Inside the sparkling facades, she witnessed everything from how it saw them; there were no landscapes, no names, only raw emotion that clung to certain images. It recalled the six other faces, yet Ailish could feel the clashing of terror and joy; they were both the closest it had to family, and adversity.

"I'm not going back." The stranger said with a quiet finality in its voice before its eyes turned away from Ailish. She did not say anything to the figure, but instead hugged her.

"It's okay." The goddess said softly in her ear, hoping it would be enough to comfort her.

"I like this life... It's the only thing I have now." The stranger mumbled, quiet enough for her not to notice. But she did. Ailish said nothing but kept her gaze on the figure in front of her, willing her to keep talking.

"First heaven was saturated with the souls of the deceased. Then the Premier vanished, then the four Kings of Hell changed, and... we changed... I couldn't remember anything after that." It was Ailish's turn to speak, as the old stranger looked expectantly.

"I'm glad that you and your friends are here. If we can reconfigure the others, there may be hope for the heavens."

"I won't help you."

"But the heavens are our home."

"I want to see the realm restored, but to fix the others like you imagine, means I must die."

"Your soul will live on in your friends."

"No! I will cease to exist when my friends reclaim their lost pieces from me!"

The goddess froze at those words. She was the key to restoring the others - Ailish knew this - yet she had already became self-aware. The face she remembered of the stranger was not really her face; more an amalgam of the others' than a face wholly her own.

"I know you mean well... but you cannot fix heaven." A fire burned in Ailish's heart at the declaration.

"But Purgatory is not our true home! We need to return! We need to save them!"

"It's more our home now than the other!" Tears began to form on the goddess' face as her hope began to shrivel. More than anything, Ailish wanted to leave and revisit her mind. But the stranger was not finished speaking.

"There will be a time to restore the heavens, but it's not now. And it's not going to be the same once heaven is saved." She said before the goddess left the observatory.

"May you find peace."

Roe - 20, 1

Roe was fascinated by the tiny being that Olek held and skipped behind him as he strode down towards the planets, admiring how much the Solar System had changed since he had last been there. Now in addition to the fiery heat of Niv and the planet Roe, there was a forested planet, one that looked similar to his own but slightly further out and a shining moon that orbited the planet he'd created. Further in the distance, countless stars pricked the void that surrounded them. The young god couldn't wait to explore all these new places but for now kept following Olek, curious of what he was about do to.

Once they touched down on the surface of Roe, Olek sat down crossed legged on the ground and Roe ran off a short way to the new ocean, dipping his bare toes in the swirling water and jumping over each wave as it broke. He did this for quite some time, laughing merrily with each leap. Eventually he tired of the game and turned back to where Olek was sitting, making his way over to the god's side.

"Oh..." Roe said simply when he saw the homunculus Olek was focusing on. The child wanted to repay the god for saving him and so he decided to help with the race that was being created before his eyes. He added his power into the tiny being, willing it not only to live but to become something more... more like him. Roe knew though that his protector wouldn't want a race of eternally immature followers and so instead he gave the homunculus the gift of a short-lived innocent life stage, one that would be ripe for learning and growth and which in the end would lead to a more intelligent and adaptable individual than had they been born fully sapient.

"When you're grown-up, you'll be like he wants..." Roe thought, "but before that, you'll be fun and not boring and want to play all of the time, every day! I'll try to play with you too and make sure nothing bad happens, well most of the time anyway..."

Seith

Seith returned to the observatory. He intended to spend a great deal of his time here now. Ailish had left and he was alone, or so he felt. Horror was finished, dead, gone. In its place, laid a new creature, a female who represented the broken nature of her home. Seith had work to do, she wasn't fixed yet. It was his responsibility, everything was. He had to help her and he knew how. He approached her.

"I know this is a lot to take in but take comfort in that I am your father, I will not leave you and I will watch over you. I have a job in mind and I hope you are willing to accept the purpose I wish to bestow upon you."

She turned around and faced him, looking down. "That goddess, who I suppose would be my mother then, she left. She calls this place purgatory but you call it home. The Heavens are dead, aren't they?"

Seith answered in his paternal manner "Perhaps for now, they could be restored if we wish for them to be. This isn't purgatory, she will accept that at some point given time."

The broken angel smiled a bit at that thought. "I suppose, she would be happier to accept this as her home now. My mother failed to assign me a name, I suppose that means you must, unless you wish for me to name myself."

Seith laughed at the thought, "No, I have a name that would work. From now on, you shall be known as Sephariel. I want you to serve as the ever watching eye for my race."

Sephariel looked out the observatory and wondered. "Will I ever be able to leave this place Father?" She eyed the humans sprouting, the Ents forming, the Aask crawling. "I would like to interact with the others."

Seith held his smile, though it seemed to hold a bit of sadness. "No unfortunately, the fight between us has left you bound to this place. You have the power to extend your spirit out and communicate with mortals that way, but if I send you out, you would be a mortal with a mortal's life-span, doomed."

She got up and put her hands on the diamond shell that was her home. "I am to operate this then...will you stay with me?"

Seith smiled. "Of course I will. I will teach you to use this station to its fullest, to communicate with your sisters, to create your siblings and to be ever watchful. First however, we must make your brothers and sisters. Come, I will teach you."

Melanthios 17AP, 0MP

Melanthios looked at the defeated Hunger. He seemed to be unconscious. He felt that his planet had been created and decided to wait with creating his own race for now. He needed to learn more about this world before placing his children on it. Melanthios smiled, "I will be back later, Hunger." Melanthios first had something to talk about with Vantric.

Melanthios teleported back, reappearing in front of Hunger. He looked down at him and wondered what to do with the evil being. He then heard his brother speak to him.

"Eldarwen, Melanthios. I am about to ask a lot of you. I am about to undertake possibly the greatest task any of us has. One I cannot accomplish alone. This will be my great creation, my legacy for the mortal world. I ask the two of you because I know I can trust you beyond doubt. I know this sounds outrageous but I ask you to lend me your power to mold to my purpose. More importantly, I ask you to trust me.

Melanthios smiled. It seemed he had earned the trust of his brother. He said to him "Zareth I will always help you, and I am honored that you asked my help to create your legacy." Melanthios focused and his Wisdom of the dead flashed before his eyes. He focused and combined his knowledge of the dead with his magic and sent a magic ray flying towards Zareth to aid him. The magic gave him the power needed to make the underworld, and his Wisdom would aid him in knowing how to make it.

After shooting his beam, Melanthios thought about their talk with Vantric earlier He would help him with his race. He began to gather all the thing he knew about sentient life. He then sent another beam to an ally of him, this time the magic would serve as enhancer. Making sure that Vantric had enough power, while his wisdom would help shape the creatures minds. He also sent Vantric a message "Greeting Vantric, I hope my help will allow you to make the race that you desire."

Melanthios looked down at Hunger. He suddenly had an idea. A wide grin appeared on Melanthios face. He sent a message to his allies. "Brothers I request your help once more. I know that I am asking a lot but I would be honored if you would still help me. I am going to make my first pupil, I will change Hunger's mind to that of a curious apprentice, always seeking new knowledge. I hope that you will help me with this endeavor.

Melanthios forced his hand into Hunger, it awoke and Melanthios could feel his mindless hunger. "I will give you a purpose for your hunger, my student." Melanthios forced all his knowledge and magic into Hunger, attempting to change his mindless hunger into hunger for knowledge. And attempting to make him look different, he wanted him to look like the race that he would create later.

M'endaxius - 13/30 AP, 1/2 MP

The masterpiece was going along, but there was something missing. A final gem to place in the socket, a final piece in the puzzle that would be the Oculus Obscuritatis - a dark obsidian sphere, resembling the eye that M'endar plucked out, with sweeping clouds swirling about the centre of the crater. At least the population of Roe would look upon it and be awed by the deceptive beauty that hid its barrenness, that would hide and protect the Aask, as soon as the new home was ready for their arrival. But then M'endar thoughts were interrupted as Melanthios spoke, his message resounding in its mind.

"Brothers I request your help once more. I know that I am asking a lot but I would be honored if you would still help me. I am going to make my first pupil, I will change Hunger's mind to that of a curious apprentice, always seeking new knowledge. I hope that you will help me with this endeavor."

M'endar hissed, it had slain Hunger and so Hunger was its prize. Melanthios sought to create a demigod with a hunger for knowledge... M'endar's temper left it, and in the cooling space of its psyche was left an idea. The hunger would be a chaotic one, it would be a demigod who sought knowledge for knowledge's sake. That must be what Melanthios wanted out of this, a devour of knowledge who could bring said knowledge to him and maybe his allies as well. A spy perhaps? Then the spy would have to be stealthy and clever to acquire the knowledge of things no-one wanted it to know.

M'endar responded with a quick answer, "Let it be filled with a mindless, chaotic hunger for knowledge, let it seek answers to questions no-one wants to answer, let it be stealthy to eavesdrop and capture the knowledge of others."

One of its hands reached and made a fist, channeling energy towards the defeated void creature and let it go, sending the blast of energy towards the future demigod. Now back to its own endeavor. M'endar wanted its prize that Darkness was so kind to jettison into the depths of the universe. But where was it? It could be anywhere within the planes. It could be inside the web of lies that Darkness had been sealed in, it could be among the stars, it could even be outside this universe... Nevertheless, one thing was certain. M'endar had be find it. It conjured up a dark pool of liquid and tried to scry for it...

Pentar 23AP 2MP
Almost as soon as the words escaped his lips, Pentar knew that this was not where he belonged. The others were building their contributions to creation. The God of Order would not be left out! "Never mind this." he said to the other God. "I have things to do, but this is not over." With that, Pentar marched out of the Hell Court, cap billowing behind him.

As he walked he reached out with mind to examine what the other Gods were up to. It seemed that many were trying to make their own sentient races. Trying to mimic my achievement? Pentar thought with disdain. I'll show them who the real creator is. He looked out at the young solar system and saw Eldarwen's world. It was covered in lush vegetation, but Pentar could sense that a sentient race was already on this planet. Instead he looked at the other planet, which seemed to be gathering much more attention. He could see some of the others at work on it's surface, crafting their own species and, in Zaeth's case, a whole new world. He also saw a new God who he vaguely remembered from the fight. He made a mental note to talk to him later. But for now Pentar had his own business to attend to. He picked out a yet untouched part of the planet, the southern most continent, and set himself down.

There, at the center of the land mass, he surveyed the plains before him. The trees and grasses, fresh from Eld and the other Ent worlds, were just starting to sprout. Other than that, the landscape was quite boring. It was flat and featureless. He would not allow his race to live on such land! Calling on his immense power, Pentar raised the earth into a great mountain, taller than any other on the planet. He filled it with vast veins of iron, gold, and coal. This would be the home of his people, but it was not yet done. Once more he summoned his power to bless the mountain. Those who lived here would be completely obedient and loyal to their government, and any court held here would be the fairest and most just in the world. Pentar clapped his hands, and it was so.

Vantric: 21, 1

Vantric had begun crafting his species. He felt the ethereal power surge through his form and coalesce, take shape. They would be ready, soon. A second wave of energy flowed into his creation. Melanthios, He thought. Yes, the aid he had requested. This was good. Vantric began directing the energies. The addition of Melanthios's magic would benefit his race well, it would give his people a magical element, make them more powerful. This would work well.

Overhead, the sun continued to set, casting the shadow of the mountain even further across the land. In the skies, the first evening saw the revelation of the countless stars created by Nivix dotting the heavens above. It was a perfect, peaceful moment. The moment the true masters of this world were created, Vantric thought. The time was nearing, soon the Lainir would be created, and walk the world.

In his mind, he heard a voice call out to him. "Greeting Vantric, I hope my help will allow you to make the race that you desire." It was Melanthios.

"It has. Again, I thank you. Vantric responded. He considered reiterating his previous offer of aid should Melanthios begin his own race, but stopped, it was a topic for later. One project at a time. A moment later, Melanthios's voice rang again in his mind.

"Brothers I request your help once more. I know that I am asking a lot but I would be honored if you would still help me. I am going to make my first pupil, I will change Hunger's mind to that of a curious apprentice, always seeking new knowledge. I hope that you will help me with this endeavor." An apprentice? Vantric considered. That would be interesting. He could offer his aid in turn to Melanthios.

Vantric stretched his consciousness and saw Melanthios and M'endar standing alongside each other, with the remains of one of the monsters between them. Melanthios wanted to turn this into an apprentice? He considered the possibilities. An apprentice would be intriguing, having a hand in its creation, even more so. He would need to share it with his allies, but that was acceptable. The new being would prove an asset worth having, Vantric was certain. "I will aid you. He replied. The new apprentice would have a desire to learn, specifically it would desire to learn the secrets of others. He smiled and sent his power to the body of the new being.

Ailish 1, 26

As Ailish traversed the Court, her mind thrashed with the exchange she had with the angelic stranger. The goddess had hoped that the she would help her, but to no avail. What especially felt like a weight to her was that it had feelings of its own, that while it was part of the others she valued her life above all else. She still remembered, but any help beyond that was reduced to reluctance. There's still uncertainty in her. She needs something more.

Her thoughts ended when she saw a gathering of power with one of the old strangers in the center. There was no disguising that her fellow gods and goddesses were trying to change it back, but how could she be certain they would restore its memories? More importantly, would it be more incensed to help her in restoring the heavens? Then a thought came over her.

By impulse she knelt in front of the stranger, with her staff in hand. She prepared Oiudls'Llu's tear from the observatory and dropped the emerald drop into its eyes. There was a power in grief - and tears manifested its power, but it tended to render any focus or ambition inert, but it was possible to motivate someone by another person's grief. Ailish hoped that the stranger would tie its feelings to the one in Seith's observatory, and possibly convince it to help the others. It was a love based on guilt and pity, but at that moment it was the goddess' only hope that the strangers could be restored to their true forms.

Discarding her staff, she placed her hands on the eyes of Akld'dali.

"Relax. Gather yourself." She whispered to the old stranger.

The Storyteller

The Storyteller paused as one of the children climbed into his lap, cradling her head against him. He patted her gently and then continued his tale.

"And so thus at the end of the First Age, much had been established but even as the age drew to an end, the gods were still busy. Upon the planet Roe, the God of Men forged from his homunculus the first man, with the assistance of the Child of Chaos who infused into the new being the phase and spirit of childhood. Early mankind would honour both gods, with the adults primarily being the faction of the elder god and the children, a race within a race, coming under the special patronage of the younger god.

Far across on the other side of the planet, the God of Order brought up from the ground a great mountain, rich in ore and precious metals, so tall it's peak almost touched the clouds. Nearby the Master of Treachery succeeded in creating the Lainir, a race fuelled by corruption and greed. In the Eastern hemisphere, the Ghost Father formed an underworld in the great canyon he'd accidentally struck into the earth and right by the canyon a portal appeared, created by the Queen of Nature from her forested planet Eld.

Whilst much occurred upon Roe, it was not alone in it's activity in the budding universe. Upon the planet Salustutis the Dark Messiah successfully converted the last of the Seven, Hunger, into an apprentice to learn from him. Meanwhile the Auguress of Times Forgotten endeavoured to bring back the void creature's lost memory and succeeded. The Deceiver scried the universe to find the ebony gem spat out by Darkness.

Somewhere far across the universe though, in a deep pocket of darkness, emerged a fourteenth god. If he'd been there since the beginning of time or only been born later, no god or mortal know. All they know was his name was Aen, the Hero's Guardian."

The Storyteller took a moment to get back his breath and shifted the child in his lap around to straighten his legs, then continued.

"It was an unimaginable two hundred million years until the next age would begin, however the gods did not sit idle. Amongst other things, the planet that had been referred to as Roe during the First Age, after it's creator of course, was given a multitude of names by the many mortal races that lived upon it's surface. Out of these names one stood out from amongst the others, one which would eclipse the rest. That name... that name was Evalon.

Now what else did the gods do? Well..."

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