Monday, July 21, 2008


After we arrived at the Courts, our "guide" had some words for us. He would not take us back unless we paid him even more. The man was starting to infuriate me. Surely, he should know he would be rewarded for his efforts, yet he insisted on discussing the details at every instance. He is lucky I do not kill him, but for now, he is needed.

After dealing with his "pay," I got down to business. The area we were in seemed to only be the outskirts of a once great city. The styles were primitive, and representative of a thousand worlds, yet the they were built and laid out with modern planning and detail. It was as if someone were building a replica of an ancient time.

I saw no technology, but signs of sorcery abounded. Some of the buildings were scarred with the remnants of eldritch might, while others were more worse for wear from the hands of looters. I tried to find an official building, but most of them seemed to be temples or other places of worship. The language was mostly my own, but I saw others as well.

The dog ran to and fro among the buildings while I explored, Anna and my guards at my side. Zorah simply slept on his rock, clearly uninterested in anything we might have found.

After many hours, my child approached me and asked if I had thought to bring food or water. She did not want to ask him, and I don't blame her. Unfortunately, I had not. And her question brought me back to think of the trifling details of my exploration.

As much as I hated to admit, the task before me required days, weeks, perhaps months or years of research, exploration, and sorcery. I would need to send out search parties, and carefully prepare spells to ferret out the information I needed. And this required my home...and the only man who could bring it here, Zorah.

I steeled myself for dealing with the unctuous man, and made arrangements for him to bring us back to The Floating Nile, and bring the Floating Nile here. While we journeyed back, I searched through my treasuries, pulling out long discarded implements of prayer and power. I would need them to prepare the spells I required.

The plan was simple, and yet utterly complex. The remainder of the poisonous ones would form search parties, and report to me the lay of the land. I would use the information in conjunction with my spells to find places of interest, which could be searched out in more detail.

It would long, and arduous, and I would hate every minute of it, but I had to know. I needed to find the secrets of my past.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


Zesiro watched what remained of the Court of Chaos unfold before her. It was the first thing she had seen in her travels that truly rivaled The Floating Nile in both form and function. There was no doubt in her mind that this was the birthplace, if not of her body, certainly of her soul.

And yet, her soul cried out. The majesty that was the Courts was dead...a cold husk, burnt out and hollow. Indeed, there was no living thing amoung the wreckage, and as the slimy little man had said, anything of value had been looted long before.

She could only hope that the looters had overlooked something which would lead her to the next step on her path.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


Zesiro watches the planet below grow smaller as her drop-ship speeds towards the Floating Nile. Ogmundr had insisted on staying to fight these savage “Orks,” and no amount of persuasion was changing his mind. The Artist had decided to stay as well, somehow swayed by Ogmundr’s battlelust. Even her child had left, returning to his strange flying moon. Only Anna remained. So be it. Together they would find these “Courts of Chaos.” Together they would unlock the secrets of the Queen’s heritage.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

A Turning Point

Much had changed in the last month. A step through the cards had brought fighting, and she had received her first wound. Prison followed on a loud, dirty planet of overwhelming order - bureaucratic accusations, discovery of "substance." She had found another child - a viper among men who killed those who reminded her of past hurts. The child told her much of "the way things were," or at least, what she felt them to be. Of particular interest were the thoughts that Zesiro and Taxchan were "Lords of Chaos."

Now, they waited in space above a planet newly conquered. Her armies had done well, and the performance of the barbarian was impressive. But he wished to travel onward, to continue conquest of this brave new world, and she was tired. Eager to discover the power that might await in the Courts of Chaos - to move on, now that he had his fun.

As their words became heated and altercations threatened, an agreement was reached. The Great Warlord would stay on the planet, accompanied by the vast majority of the legions, where he would wage war on this system until it was entirely under his control. The Mighty Queen would travel to the Courts, where she would find the answers she sought. Both would keep the paintings of the other, that contact would be maintained. And when the time came, they would reunite again, both victorious.

All that remained was the disposition of the passengers...

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Children and Visitors

[File Archive - One hundred and twelfth year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 09:56 PM local time, Throne Room, Palace of the Sands, Ineb-Hedj]

A large creature enters slowly and cautiously through the front portal. It stands well above everybody else, and its maw and claws are dripping with blood. It seems serene for the moment.

Zesiro stands from her throne. "Your are beautiful, child." It cocks its head and surveys the room. Rising up, it is nearly twenty-five feet tall and more than thirty feet long. It merely glances at the priests and other chattel, including Ernst. Its gaze rests on Ogmundr. Black and red eyes take him in.

He was, indeed, most beautiful...stunning to behold.

Ogmundr stares back at it, holding his baton. "This came from your loins?" He doesn't take his eyes off of The Creature.

Ernst takes cover behind Ogmundr. "Oh shit."

"Only in that all of his kind are my children, as are the scorpions, and the toads, and all those who bear venom." Ogmundr laughs out loud at her statement.

Overall, the creature's movements are birdlike, its demeanor cold, and its expressions predatory. It sniffs the air. Lets its nose lead it to Zesiro. It walks up to her. The scorpion-men, for once, don't block him from approaching. Its bloody muzzle opens, revealing dozens of sharp teeth. He hisses. "I am Taxchan Choth."

Ernst whispers to Ogmundr, "If after every tempest come such calms, may the winds blow till they have waken'd death!"

"I am the Goddess Zesiro, and this is my home."

Ogmundr turns to Ernst: "Don't get me killed with your poetry."

"Where?" Taxchan cocks his head, like a parrot asking a question.

Ernst replies to Ogmundr, "Not mine."

Ogmundr turns to The Empress. "I guess you don't want me to stab it."

"No. Where? Is this? I'm not from here." Ogmundr smiles at the creature as it speaks, and it hisses back.

Ogmundr replies, "Neither am I. It's in th-... well, she explains better."

"This is the Palace of the Sands, upon the Floating Nile."

Taxchan steps up to the level of the throne, steps to Ogmundr's side, smells him. Ogmundr takes a few sniffs of the stranger, his right eye flashes and he waves his baton nearby. Taxchan looks around again."Okay."


Ogmundr turns around and mutters to Ernst: "If you need to run, I'll let you know and give you time." Ernst takes off for the nearest door.

Zesiro continues speaking with Taxchan, "What brings you to this world, Taxchan Choth?"

"Thank you -" Taxchan hops in front of Ernst. There's a thud. And a whoosh. Then a smaller one upon Ernst's face. Ernst screams as the big bird's breath hits him, then he faints. Brandishing his claws, Taxchan continues speaking to Zesiro. "Lady Zesiro. I am not from. This universe."

Ogmundr fires his hand off to pick up Ernst and bring him back, and Taxchan jumps back! "He," Ogmundr nods at Ernst, "is not food."

"Neither are we. This place is his, " she gestures towards Ernst, "home."

"Can you help me -" Taxchan's head snaps to Ogmundr "- Lady Zesiro? And -" he hops nearer to the throne again, "of course he's food."

"For now, he is my food. And I wish to play with him first."

Ogmundr's blade extends. "No, he's not." Several of the guards step towards Ogmundr, then retreat as he sheathes his blade again, looking at the Empress.

"What help do you need, child?"

Taxchan turns his attention back to Zesiro. "Then if you are offworlders -" attention on Ogmundr again "- do you not seek to return?" He hisses, while his tail whips slightly - it seems very stiff. He sits back when the sword is sheathed, and preens.

"I seek answers which lie in other universes."

Ogmundr laughs outloud, and Ernst speaks in the ensueing silence. "The Leviathan, the death serpent. Trump of putrification." Ogmundr looks towards him.

Zesiro continues, "And then to return."

"Extinction," Taxchan insists. "Answers? To what?"

Ogmundr speaks up then, "Why would I want to return to Wesselm? I already conquered that as a babe."

"Questions of our origins. And our ancesters." Taxchan hisses at her answers.

Ernst speaks again, "Zesiro, the Golem is attacking me."

She turns to him. "What?" Ogmundr sighs as his metal hand rubs his eyes, and his right hand again draws the baton, without extending the blade.

A crest of feathers rises on Taxchan's head. "Where?" He circles Ernst.

Zesiro replies, "How does he attack you, Erst?"

"Its draining me somehow, I don't understand how. It spoke a word I cannot pronounce."

"Does he use your body?" Taxchan circles, looks down over Ernst's shoulder, rests a heavy claw on his back. "Is he? In you?"

Zesiro looks to her Priests. "Locate this creature."

"No, he's down there." Ernst points to the Earth.

Ogmundr's non-challant expression turns serious. "Where? We just conquered this pla-... er.. sorry, Erst."

"Lady. What answers?" Taxchan takes his claw off Ernst's back.

Ogmundr speaks to him, "Yeah, don't kill our native. He's useful."

"A visitor told me stories of our ancestors. I wish to see if they are true."

Ogmundr interjects, "How do you mean our?"

"Your ancestors?" Taxchan looks up. It snaps and shakes his head violently. "They are not in this world. They are alive." Hiss. "Or not in this world."

"According to Aimery, we are all of the same blood. All those who I term Visitors. And that our line comes from a city now destroyed. I wish to see if he words are I travel the pathways between worlds."

Ogmundr speaks to Ernst, "This Golem, if he's here, does not resemble your picture. According to Her Firstbornness's Scanners. And who's Aimery?"

"Another one who visited my world. The Knight."

Ernst laughs then remembers himself. "Even in outer space I can't escape my critics!" Ogmundr smiles.

Taxchan cries, "Picture!"

"This one," Zesiro points to Ernst, "has made paintings of us all...and others." Taxchan click his claws on the stone.

"Yes yes yes, of course." Ernst scrambles to his feet then begins unfurling several hastily wrapped canvases and Zesiro motions to her servants to assist him. The pictures appear to have been literally cut from their frames and rolled up.

Ogmundr speaks to her, "The Knight seems very unhelpful currently, your Empressness."

Taxchan asks again, "Golem?"

"The long-range sca-...The Senses of Egypt have not seen anything resembling your image or your shit-related description on this foreign world."

Ernst shuffles through a few paintings. They appear to be trumps in some sort of weird tarot deck. Taxchan hisses. He approaches the pile of pictures and gently unfolds them with its claws. Ernst briefly looks at the one labelled death, then sets it down, and eventually finds and unfurls one containing a picture of Golem. ogmundr looks at the death card and Taxchan, who speaks again. "Yes. My kin."

"I see, its all becoming clear to me now. Wait..."

"This." Taxchan coughs at the painting of the golem. "Could be him."

Ogmundr adds, "If you hold up the painting, I can scan the image to Egypts Senses."

"His meats change." Ogmundr snorts at Taxchan's reply.

Ernst sticks his hand deep down his throat and starts choking. Pancake bits and coffee splatter on the imperial floor. He trails his fingers through the partially digested bits. "There! Its in my home! Why the hell is it in my home?"

Ogmundr looks to Ernst, "Why the hell did you vomit on us?"

"With you, friend conqueror. With you."

"Then we will go there. Come!" Zesiro begins to walk out of the throne room.

Ogmundr turns to Ernst, "Give us Directions, Pure One, we shall follow Her Empress to a, uh, transport."

"Where? Now!" Taxchan cocks his head around rapidly, tail twitching. "Down? Now!" He, Ernst, and Ogmundr follow Zesiro out of the room.

[The screen goes dark.]

We took a transport down to the planet, where we encountered the Golem. It seems my child had encountered this being before, and was quite angry with him. He demanded to know the way back to his home, but the Golem could not answer him. Eventually, my dear even tore him to pieces, but this had no effect on the Golem, who merely reformed out of the concrete and asphalt around him. From what we were able to get from him, the Golem had been cursed after killing a Knight of the Pattern, and he could not die. He sought the devourer, that he might enlarge it, and force it to devour him as well, ending his existence. He threatened any who would stand in his path.

We considered confronting him, but decided against it, and returned to the ship to consider our next action. While there, we considered the curious paintings on Ernst. There was something about them, so I decided to try and infuse them with magic...see if that might activate them in some way. It did. It seems that they can be used somehow, to talk to people or to travel to places. The next day, I used one of them to speak with Aimery. My child and I also used one to travel to another world, but that is a story for another day.


[File Archive - One hundred and twelfth year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 08:17 PM local time, War Room, Palace of the Sands, Ineb-Hedj]

Ogmundr enters the war room, carrying collection of bottles in one hand, and a collection of records in the other. "Your Empress, the player for these discs still lays in the ship. These artifacts are very delicate, thus I didn't risk their destruction. I can say the same for our native. I have figured out our plans, all operations are a go."

Zesiro replies, "Your plans are prepared."

"This is not the best test of our mettle, but it will be interesting. I suspected the discover of the atom was but decades ahead of these savages. Perhaps our hordes should not use their poisons, to make things close to even?"

"It will showcase what you have taught them more fully."

Ogmundr checks the sword-baton hidden in his fore-arm, replaces it, then tests the one strapped to his thigh, smiling. "Then a test for speed! The orders might have changed such." He places orders as he points to places on the map. "New Strike Points: Berlin, Moscow, New York, Los Angeles...Ready flight ships for major strike points. Once objectives have been achieved, return to your ships."

"Lead on, Grand Warlord. I will observe."

Ogmundr dons some leather armor, well fitted to his body and nods at The Empress. "Do not blink, you will miss something," he says with a smile as he boards his dropship. The panther dives after him.
[Zesiro speaks over the activity of the war room. Priests are running to and fro, delivering orders. Something of interest is shown to Zesiro on one of the view screens.] Shortly after he left, we began to receive reports of an explosion nearby. From the wreckage, a moon was headed towards the planet below. At that time, I had no idea what it would contain, but I would soon find out.

Ogmunder soon reappears in the war room, scratching his chin. "I know Erst's planet is not worthy. I'm only suspecting the new one might. Shall we switch targets and change plans, Empress?" He walks over to The Big Table and starts re-arranging pieces. Zesiro is lounging in a chair. She seems preoccupied, and does not respond. "Well, then, send all long-range scanners to the new target, retreat all ships from the old world. I have no idea what Her- My Mates (snorts) Diplomatic Relations is like, but she'd better if she not leave it to me."

I had sensed an intelligence on the other planet. One of my children, yet he thought as we did. This was something I had never encountered before. While I love them dearly, never has one of my children been able to speak with me in such a way.

Ogmundr continues to issue orders, "Ten Percent of our ships to invade the new lands. The remaining, go according to plans, but at a 1.13 factor. The Artist's planet will not be that hard. That is, unless Her Mostborn-ness wants to try the diplomatic approach?" He looks over to Zesiro, who is still non-responsive. "Hell, hold on. 100 percent back to invasion watery planet. What missiles we got against this newcomer?" He looks around at a bunch of slavering snakes. "WHAT MISSILES DO WE HAVE?"

Suddenly, Zesiro speaks, "Stop the attack on the new planet. One of my children is on it."

Ogmundr nods. "New crazy idea, Empress. We called it Ramming Speed in my worlds, very destructive to both. Not on the new planet, of course."

"And not with this ship."

He frowns, "Aw."

[Zesiro speaks as the footage speeds forward.] The invasion was more than successful, and soon the objectives were taken. We were analyzing the reports when Ernst finally awoke.

[The footage goes back to normal speed.] Ernst speaks, "Are you acquainted with the man of the elements? He's here, down there."

Zesiro replies, "The man of elements?"

Ogmundr turns to The Firstborn, "So, status report on interloper? Or shall we just... I don't know." He looks at the looted bottles, then at Ernst. "Which one's this Absinthe you speak of?"

"Yes, the Golem. The living microposopus. He's down there."

Zesiro answers Ogmundr, "I am awaiting his reply. Waiting for him to come to us."

"Wait, I'll show you!" Ernst runs to his possessions, unties a rolled up canvas, and shows off a somewhat similar picture.

Ogmundr speaks, "The Golem," and draws his baton strapped to his leg, tossing it around in his hand.

Zesiro stands. "Send a shuttle to the moon, and fetch back my child. And what is this, of one on the planet below?"

"Its watching us." Ernst looks to those around the room. "Uhm, I'm kind of hungry and I still can't figure out how to work the conch shells. Can I go get something to eat?"

Ogmundr goes to one of the guards and orders a 5 course meal for Ernst. "I will not get the Slaw of Cole here, will I?" The guard shakes his head, somewhat bewildered, then goes off. "Golem. Your child. Did you name it?"

"What does this 'golem' have to do with my child?"

"I'm not sure. We should ask The Pure One when he's not eating."

Ernst looks up. "I don't really understand it, and I don't think the Golem is the Empress's child. It's something else."

"Oh. Well." Ogmundr keeps toying with his baton,

"The golem is not my child. My child is on the moon."

Ernst turns to the guard who brought the food, "So... uhm, Ibis head. Does your advanced civilization have pancakes and syrup? Because that sounds pretty good right now. Helps with the whole annihilation of everything I held dear thing." The guard shakes his head.

"Come with me to the throne room, to meet him." Zesiro gets up and leaves.

"I'll be ready to skewer whatever it is, let me be informed if it's an enemy. Pan-cakes... the breaded wheat made of flat pans? That does sound good."

"Yes, the same. There's an entire universe in those doughy swirls."

Ogmundr shrugs, "Yes, my apologies," and leaves, yelling over his shoulder to Ernst. "You might want to come watch the spectacle, Pure One. You can bring your pancakes."

Plans of War

[File Archive - One hundred and twelfth year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 02:35 PM local time, War Room, Palace of the Sands, Ineb-Hedj]

The War Room is a sharp contrast to the public rooms in the Palace of the Sands. The golden walls are lined with keyboards and displays, and the center of the room is dominated by a 3D holographic map, with various markers held suspended in mid-air. Priests man the consoles in the room, and occasionally move one of the battle markers on the map. Standing against the walls of the room, watching the proceedings with little interest, are Zesiro's four scorpion headed guards. Zesiro stands with Ogmundr and several generals, conferring in front of the map. Ogmundr is a striking contrast to the rest of the room, clothed in just a loincloth and belt, with leather boots and bracers. His light skin stands out against the dark skin and hair of the others present. Another anomaly is Ernst, dressed now in the clothes of one of Zesiro's servants, but obviously not a native to this place.

[Zesiro's voice starts.] After my visit to Erst's home world, I told Ogmundr that I had a mission for him. I wanted to see how the new soldiers he had trained would perform, and I still had not gotten my music, so I told him I wanted him to take over the planet.

Zesiro speaks, "If you need more intelligence, ask The Artist."

Ogmundr replies, "What does your planet call The Artist?"

"I believe he said his name was Erst. He paints pictures of Visitors...such as yourself, and I."

"You are just a visitor to this land?"

"It is a term I use to refer to those such as opposed to the others in this land. Aimery says that we are all descendants of the same line."

"Who's Aimery and what do you mean such as us?"

"I don't know that I believe him, but there is something that sets us apart."

Ogmundr blinks and grimaces as he looks over at the robed man who spoke.

Ernst, obviously not used to people cowling him, recoils like a sissy. "I mean... yes, I'm here to help I suppose."

Ogmundr looks back at The Empress. "Yeah, yeah, we're all magical gods that cross worlds... is this your Erst that has knowledge of the lands we usurp?"

"I'll kindly shut up now. Please don't kill me..."

"No, go on..." He stares at Ernst, his right eye flaring, then smiles. "A pure one!"

Zesiro walks over to Ernst, gently caressing his head. "Ssh. You have nothing to be afraid of long as you please me."

Ogmundr turns his head before he laughs.

Ernst smiles awkwardly.

"Don't scare the Pure One, Ze-... er... Your Firstborn-ness"

"Tell him of your world, Erst." After issuing her order, Zesiro goes back to studying the map.

Ogmundr smiles at Ernst as he begins speaking, "My world? Where do I even begin?"

"Erst, I know this sounds weird. Just help us take over. If you have loved ones, give me their names and I'll make sure they're spared. Give me names of enemies and I'll flay them any way you wish."

"Wait... are you invading my world?!" Ogmundr smiles and looks back at The Empress as Ernst continues, "No, its okay. I've seen the portents. dada dada dada."

"I'll let you watch and help flay your enemies if you-Um..." Ogmundr's face turns serious.

"Are you serious?"

"Alright, she's the patient one of us, which, well." Ogmundr's right eye flares.

Zesiro turns back to them, "What?"

Ernst trembles. "Well, it's just that..."

Ogmundr blinks for a moment, "...Yes?"

"We just had a big war. A great war to end all wars. Seems kind of unfair to kick a world while she's down, you know? Might it wait?"

"Yeah, well, yeah. Deciding when to war isn't my job. Neither is deciding where. Deciding how and with what is."

Zesiro speak up, "I still wish my 'jazz.'"

Ogmundr shrugs, "So it is spoken."

Ernst starts. "Oh!"

"Go on."

"You don't want that. Trust me, its slave music made by people revolting against people like you. Its deliberately plays on deviations of our more classical music, which really is much more suited to aristocratic tastes. But if you insist we can pick up a few musicians. I know just the place."

"I liked what I heard."

Ogmundr puts his two cents in, "Sounds foreign even in your own world, where did it come from?"

I was quickly growing impatient.

"I wish for this music, and I wish to see my soldiers tested. Do *not* deny my wishes."

"Well, though I cannot facilitate your musical tastes, this world is a mere speck in comparisons for a test. It's like asking a bear to defeat a goldfish. Or, uh... snake... defeat, uh, whatever snakes normally eat."

"Do you have a better target for the test?"

Ernst chimes in, "How about the tendrils that whisper madness?"

"I do not. But this will not be a display of our Hordes power. Not even the best of their shields will defy the weakest of our weapons." Ogmundr blinks. "Well, if your world has that, then maybe it is a true test." Zesiro looks over with interest as well.

"Oh, er... sorry. I meant in my dreams. I dreamt of the Empress and she appeared in my world. If she exists then perhaps the tendrils exist too? They whisper of hidden places and secrets between spaces."

Ogmundr blinks once, then twice, then turns to The Empress, "So where shall we lead the invasion?"

"Just get me my jazz. And some of this Absinthe. And find a place for the test."

"Fine, we will get your Jazz and your Absinthe..." He turns to one of the Priests. "Display a holosphere of this globe, we'll chose a location at random."

Ernst speaks up again, "I can get the Jazz if you have a way to get to my world. No need to kill anybody. I can't really help with the test though."

"Last time I sent you to get it, you ran from me."

"Your Firstbornness, if I may please." He nods to Ernst.


"I would like a moment to speak with the... native of this world to help us. I'm sure he would like to end this without conflict."

"As you wish."

Ogmundr walks over to a corner of the room, orders those there to clear, and beckons Ernst to follow. The camera continues to pick up their conversation.

Ogmundr's voice takes a more friendly tone. "Hey, I call you Pure One because you remind me of my family back home. I don't want this to end in blood. Just tell us where were can get The Mad One," he nods to Zesiro, "her Jazz and Absinthe, then we're good to go."

"We're not too farm from Stockholm. Its a capital city, we should be able to find what we need there."

Ogmundr's eye flares. "I don't want to make this weird, but I can tell when someone speaks the truth or not. I won't tell Her Majesty, just find a place to get us some bottles and some music samples and we can replicate the rest. I've... uh.." Ogmundr hunkers down, and Ernst joins him. "I'll deal with the testing-army thing. No offense to your world, it's very nice, but it's not...Well...Like you've said, still recovering." He blinks a few times.

"Ah! I understand your confusion. And mine. Audio recordings were only very recently invented in my world. I'm guessing that the Empress doesn't record music on metal disks?"

Ogmundr nods, "I'm sure it might not be similar, but it is something we can reproduce."

"Its rare and pretty expensive, we'll have to go to a big city. That engineer guy over there said he could get us to Sweden. Stockholm's the closest place we've got. How does this work? Is the big pyramid ship taking us there? That might freak people out. Serves them right!"

"Well, if we wish, then yes. As it is now, you're lucky and you have caught Her on a good day. She just gave me permission to find another world as a testing grounds. Only on the stipulation of finding your Jazz and Absinthe. Do they call these recordings Laser Discs?"

"No. Look, I don't even know what that means. But I know what we need so if we could just go to one of the big cities we can solve this whole mess."

"Yes. Tell me the city, the place for one of your musical recordings, your Absinthe, and the device that displays your musical recordings."

"Oh, thats easy. Lets go to Berlin, in the Weimar Republic."


"Is there a place you know, or should we just land in a random place?"

"Lets land NOT on building and people."

Now, unbeknown to Ernst, Ogmundr had been talking to me this whole time via the on board comms. He had already designated the targets, and given me his plans, to be instituted as soon as they had obtained my spoils. They soon left the ship, and headed to Ernst's home city, known as "Berlin."

Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Tortured Artist

The priests came to me because there was a strange, rainbow-hued gateway in one of the gardens. Several of the Poisonous Ones had cordoned off the area, but they weren't sure what to do next. I went to investigate.

The gateway seemed to lead to some sort of artist's studio. I could see a young man, a painter, working on the other side. The finished works I could see were mostly pedestrian, but a couple of the pieces interested me. What really caught my eye, however, was that one of the paintings, half-finished, and lying discarded, seemed to be of me.

I decided it was worth the risk to investigate further, and stepped through, following two of my guards. The other two followed behind me. Stepping through the gateway, we were in the studio itself. The Artist was surprised, and seemed scared. He had a half crazed look in his eyes, and a confused tone to his voice.

As I looked around the studio further, I saw pictures of others I knew...Aimery, Ogmundr...and several portraits that might have been more Visitors. I asked him about the portraits, and he said that he saw them in his dreams. After a wild rant about something called the "go-lem," and fate, I told him to take me to see the world that he lived in.

He took me to a club, where the musicians played an enchanting melody on flutes, and drums, and trumpets, and some thing called a "piano." The singer was breathy and coarse, and spoke of licentiousness and vice. It was captivating, and I ordered him to get some recordings for me. At first he tried to say he would get them in the morning. This was not adequate, and I told him so. He immediately ran off to get them.

Or should I say...ran off. I got bored waiting at the club, and explored the city somewhat, eventually returning to his rooms. The gate I had taken to get to this place was gone. As morning neared, he had still not returned. I had my guards prepare me somewhere to sleep, and napped for a bit. When I awoke...still gone. This did not please me, so I had my guards bring me one of his neighbors to question. The man was no use, and I soon turned to using my children to track him down.

It took hours, but one found him on a train. I prepared my magics, and brought him before me. He was shocked, and immediately began trying to make excuses for his actions. He was lucky I did not show my displeasure, but I still needed him to make my gate back home.

He tried several times, but could not make the gate. Just as I was getting to the end of my vast reservoir of patience, a landing craft from my lands set down outside. I ordered him to gather his things, and took him aboard the craft, back to my ship.

This one had skills that would be useful, even if neither of us knew the extent of them then.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Ogmundr, the Usurper

[File Archive - One hundred and twelfth year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 01:37 PM local time, Throne Room, Palace of the Sands, Ineb-Hedj]

Two snake-headed men lead another man across the room, towards the throne. The stranger, dressed in torn leather clothes, seems almost half machine, as his left arm and right leg are obviously metal, and in place of his right eye sits a glowing red orb. Despite his obvious wounds and beaten appearance, he is smiling as the snake-men push him onward. Four other snake-headed men follow behind, carrying a motorcycle.

[Zesiro's voice begins.] A strange beginning with an even stranger ending. While I thought that I might someday choose a consort, I did not expect him to come hurtling through the dome, and practically land at my feet. I had ordered the ship to follow a shadow-pathway, and we emerged in the midst of a battle, although the combatants were but mosquitoes to us. A dome breach is not completely unheard of, but because of the battle, I sent the Poisonous Ones to investigate. They then brought the prisoner to me.

Zesiro speaks, "Who are you, that dare invade the realm of the Firstborn?"

The stranger smiled. "I am Ogmundr the Usurper. And the only invasion I saw was you filching me from the realm of death. Which you have my thanks." He stands, unflinching, smirk growing wider. "I would bow, but I am unfamiliar with your customs, Firstborn."

"Most grovel before me, praying they do not invoke my wrath. The Wrath of a Goddess can be most terrible." She stands and walks down towards him, looking him over. The Golden Scorpion, ever present on her royal brow, hisses and clacks its front claws together.

"I should make things understood. Gods in my former world are myths, but jokes told like wayward lovers and lost farts. I will allow you more respect than such." He stays at attention, eying the scorpion.

Why is it that I am continually visited by the godless? Are there no other gods than I?

"Jokes? Your gods must indeed be dead to stand for such insolence."

"There have been none since the Destruction has fallen. And as such, I am insolent and in your service. What would you have of me? I should point out that I am called The Usurper. Keep me alive and I will try to destroy you. Destroy me and you will not know my true worth."

A challenge. I knew from the beginning this one would prove to be special.

"Tell me, what use would you be to me, that I should not return you to the arms of Osiris? As for my may try all you wish, but I am Immortal."

"So am I. The Metal Gods knelt before me. As I, apparently, stand before you, wielder of my death. I should point out that your snake-headed, though potent, have not been trained truly...They have not the common knowledge of flank and skill and rely merely on poison, which is a potent beast. But two hands of poison will not pierce those that wear true metal. Only blade and skill. Both of which I can provide." He pauses, "Also, I appear to have gone a bit mad and am not entirely sure of your existence."

"So you would teach my Army? And what would you want in return, besides your life?"

He arches an eyebrow. "Nothing. Because then we would be equal."

No one yet has dared to think themselves my equal...except the other Visitors.

She laughs. "Equal?"

"Fine, slay me on the spot. You have given me life. You may give me death."

He was too valuable to die...and I thought he might be a Visitor as well.

"Death or Equality? Those are your only two choices? I do not see you as my equal...yet. Perhaps you may show yourself to also be a God."

"I have defeated Gods with my Hordes. I can defeat more with your army. My only request is Equality. I died when you saved me. The choice should be easy. Wipe me from existence or rule the cosmos."

She turns and walks back to the throne. "Come and stand beside me, at the head of my Armies, and you may have your equality."

The Poisonous Ones suddenly take an aggressive stance, then strike! Ogmundr brings up his metal arm and it expand into a shield, protecting him from the sudden bursts of poisonous spittle that rain at him. Drawing a sword of light he swings and beheads the snake-man next to him and in the same stroke guts one of the men behind him.

The motorcycle suddenly shifts into a vicious panther. It tears out the throat of one snake as it falls to the ground, then launches itself at another, tearing its throat out with its massive fangs. Ogmundr, taking advantage of the confusion, drives his elbow into the back of the second snake man beside him, and with a loud crack, the creature collapses. The remaining creatures move to a more aggressive stance and launch more attacks, as Ogmundr speaks, "It's your people you're losing.," but Zesiro seems unphased.

My people were worth expending if it would show him to be a Visitor.

A toad man leaps at Ogmundr, but the panther intervenes. At the last second, he seems to realize toad man is covered in poison, so he returns to his metallic, vehicular form, and with a great crash, they fall to the ground

Ogmundr reaches toward the queen and his hand fires from his arm. The four scorpion men surrounding her suddenly burst apart into hundreds of scorpions and fall over her like a protective blanket. The other scorpion head dives to intercept it, and the hand latches around its throat. Before the toad can recover, Ogmundr splits it open and beheads one of the other cobras in a single swing, crying out in triumph.

The panther returns to its feline form, and leaps at the last remaining snake, ripping out its throat but not before it lands a glob of poisonous spittle in Ogmundr's eyes. The scorpion man, clutching at the hand on his throat, falls apart into a small hoard of scorpions, heading over toward Ogmundr. He dives toward the place he is to stand, but is tripped at the last second by the last snake man. The swarm of scorpions washes over him, but can find only metal to strike. The panther strikes at the scorpions but neither he, Ogmundr's crushing hand, or his sword of light can seem to penetrate the carapace of the scorpions. The snake man dives on the prone Ogmundr and bites deep into his shoulder. The panther, in fear for its master, latches on to the back of the snake man's neck and decapitates it with a great tearing. Ogmundr, now under the weight of the scorpions, drags himself onto the place to stand, struggling to his feet as he cries out, "EQUAL?!"

The scorpions drop away and Zesiro motions for a chair to be brought. Ogmundr stands next to the chair, wiping himself off.

Zesiro speaks. "Your coronation will be in a few days."

Ogmundr smiles. "And where are my items back?" She motions to a servant, and they bring his sword back to him. "Good, you savages heard of Ann-Tee-Dote?"

As he says that, Ogmundr seems to almost slip into unconsciousness. Zesiro walks over to him, breathes a word of obvious power over him, and he begins to recover. She then motions to several servants, who lead him away.

Ogmundr smiles as he looks back at the Queen. "I believe not your Gods, but I would have haunted the living shit out of you." He looks over Zesiro again. "Equals. I have destroyed bigger worlds than this," then, turning back to the servants. "You first." They lead him away from the throne room.

I performed the Rite of Purification that night, to cure him of the deadly venom of my children that coursed through his veins. Thankfully, he was also bathed in the process. Not what I had ever imagined as a consort...but if he is a great a teacher as a fighter or a braggart, we can do great things together.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


A Song, beamed through space.

[OOC: Courtesy of]

Monday, May 26, 2008

Aimery, Viscomte de Thouars

[File Archive - One hundred and second year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 06:32 PM local time, Ineb-Hedj]

A man dressed in bright red and yellow, riding down the main street on a white horse, metal armor glinting in the sunlight. He stops to speak to no one. Several peasants and small children watch him as he rides by, quickly scurrying out of his way as he passes.

[A woman's voice begins to speak over the footage.] I was watching a troupe from Avaris dancing for my entertainment when the reports began to come in. I have traveled the length and breadth of my land, and this was not merely a visitor from another city. Perhaps this was a servant of the gods who had fled this place in times of legend.

[File Archive - One hundred and second year of the Reign of Our Lady, Zesiro - 08:05 PM local time, Throne Room, Palace of the Sands, Ineb-Hedj]

A woman sits upon a throne of gold and marble, with cotton and linen cushions, carved with intricate filigree. Several snakes and scorpions travel in and out of the carvings. She is dressed in pleated white linen robs and golden jewelry inlaid with lapis and other precious stones. Crook and Flail in hand, a magnificent golden scorpion seated upon her brow. Four men with the heads of scorpions surround the throne, their watchful gaze covering the courtyard.

The man from the earlier footage is led into the hall, accompanied by four men with the heads of snakes. He stands before the woman, fearless.

Surely he must have been from elsewhere. Even the bravest of my people would not stand before me with such bravado.

The woman speaks, "Welcome to the Floating Nile. What business have you with the Firstborn?"

His voice, steady, echoes through the chamber, "I am Aimery, Viscomte de Thouars, Knight of the Pattern, Servant of Siobhan II. I pass through your lands on a quest most holy. I am charged to find that which is called Le Joyau de Jugement, a holy relic of vast importance to my people."

"Tell me of your quest, and why it brings you here. What is this jewel? We have many here."

"Le Joyau is a symbol that was worn by the ruler of my home, before the coming of the great wars that laid it to rest. I am but one of a holy order seeking to restore the glory of my people and La Ville Premiere, The First City, Ambre. It is a ruby of immense size, hung from a golden chain. Inside is an intricate Pattern, the holy symbol of my people."

"The First City? There is no city called Ambre in these lands."

"I fear my religion will differ from yours; I warn you my story will be heresy to your ears. All cities, even this one, are a reflection of La Premiere, for it contained the Pattern, the source of order in all things."

"But this 'First City' was destroyed, and now you seek a Jewel that would make the bearer ruler of this lost city?"

This jewel intrigued me. Perhaps I could make something of this quest...little did I know what he was about to show me.

"It does not bestow rulership, but confirms birthright. The ruler must master Le Joyau to recreate La Premiere, and all the reflections thereof. Only one born of the blood of the great artiste will be able to wield it, or recreate Ambre."

"How did your quest come to bring you here?"

"Those of this lineage may walk the Pattern and the secrets of worlds are revealed. Then, with thought, they may seek what their heart desires, and all roads will lead them there, no matter how many worlds lay in their way."

"Interesting. So you come from a world outside of this one? Is this your destination, or merely a stop along the way?"

"I come from La Premiere, the center of existence before it was gone. My destination is Le Joyau, but I explore the possibilities that the Pattern places on the path to my destination. It may have brought me here for Le Joyau, news of its guardians, or a missing relative, or the next king or queen. I must decipher these omens as I travel."

"So, if you found this jewel, you do not know who would use it?"

"It is my quest to safeguard it, till the next ruler is found."

"And how do you find this ruler, then?"

"The pattern will guide us when it is time."

"So this pattern, it is your god?"

"Not a god, but the source of order, created by our first father."

"So then this First Father is your god?"

"I have no god. He is my ancestor, Dworkin, the first of our family. The one who created the Pattern."

"No god? Are you, yourself, a god then?" A man with no gods. Even now it still interests me.

"To many we are gods, but I do not seek for people to worship me. I merely go where Pattern or Pope send me."

"A strange man, with no gods, yet on a holy quest. Stay here this night, as my guest, and tell me more of your lands and this...Ambre."

"It would be my honor...Cousin."

I admit, this was something I was not expecting. Never had one been so bold as to claimed to be related to me.


"My vision passes through the lens of the Pattern, and it reveals to me that which is real," he waves an arm at the people surrounding them, "from that which is shadow. I am as sure that Dworkin's blood burns in you as I'm sure that the power of chaos is the source of your guards."

"Chaos? My guards bring order to this place."

I control the world-eater, Apep...although his influence grows stronger.

"There is order in chaos, and vice versa. Dworkin and his bride both arose from the primal chaos to create order. But these creatures come from the depths of chaos most assuredly. Someone there either wishes to protect you...or imprison you here."

"Imprison me?" She laughs. "I can leave this place any time I wish. I fly through the stars regularly."

"These stars perhaps, but your heritage allows you to travel farther." He looks up to the starry night shining over them. "You have seen these stars countless times before, I am sure. But, have you seen these?"

She watches as the patterns in the night sky begin to change. At first the changes are subtle...a new constellation, a brighter star. Then, the stars blink out completely, and the darkness of the sky changes from deep blue, to green, to a bright pink. Priests run to the woman, complaining of instruments going awry and sensors off the charts.

I had nothing to say to them, enthralled as I was by the changing skies. By the time I was able to form a coherent thought to answer them, the sky above had returned to normal.

She looks over Aimery for a moment, then claps her hands for her servants. "It is time for dinner. Bring it, and then leave us."

There was much I wanted to know about this man, who truly was from another world, but my people did not need to hear it. I was not entirely sure it would not undermine my authority.

Both the man and the woman wait, silently, as servants lay out a sumptuous meal. She is the first to speak again. "Tell me more of those other worlds."

"I cannot tell of all the worlds. For all is possible in the shadow of Ambre. If one seeks their desires, it will be found or created in shadow."

"If Ambre is destroyed, how does it cast a shadow?"

"The shadows remain, but they will not last if it is not restored. All that holds them together now are the powers of the Great Pattern Church,and Her Grace Pope Siobhan II."

I had to know what this could mean for my lands?

"Even this world?"

"Oui." He nods.

If this were true, I needed to act. To some, I may seem uncaring, but I have a responsibility to my people.

"And the only way to stop it is to find this Jewel, and give it to the King or Queen to recreate the city? And the Pattern will help you find both?"

"In essence."

"Then it seems I have no choice but to assist you. What aid can I offer?."

"A night's rest so that I might perform my holy observances is all I seek. I then intend to continue my path lest you have need of me."

I wanted to keep him for ages, and ask all my questions. But, I knew that could not be.

"I do not, but if there is other assistance I may offer, call upon me. I will have a servant take you to your chambers."

"My gratitude."

He retired, and I did not see him again until the morning meal, which he joined me for. During our meal, he told me more of the worlds apart from mine. That there were paths through these shadows even those not descended from this Dworkin could follow. That if I found them, and if I was able to use them to find the Pattern, and if I managed to traverse it...then I would also be able to travel worlds as he did.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

More Introduction Questions

What is her most obvious blessing or strength?
Her great beauty and her powerful presence.
What does she perceive as her greatest strength?
Her ability to instill loyalty amongst her people.
What is her most obvious flaw or weakness?
She is quick to anger, and will lash out at the perceived source of her anger.
What does she perceive as her greatest weakness?
She might say she has none, but she is starting to realize that her quick temper may be a problem for her.

A Journey

Reality Check

My first reaction was anger. I had not ordered the rains, or a storm. But it was soon apparent the storm was not a natural one. Even my anger, in its infinite majesty, could not rip the universe asunder.

Nonplussed, I molded myself into a cobra, and felt the warm sands of the desert embrace me as I made my way home. The arms of Geb did not comfort me, nor the soft touch of a lover. I lay in my bed for the rest of the evening, their silken scales gliding over my naked skin as I pined for the piece of myself I had lost.

As the sun crept into my chambers, I arose. I could not let this loss go unanswered. No one took from this Goddess that which I did not freely give. I would seek out one who knew of the travel between worlds, of the places where the shadows swirled, and where chaos lived. I would have answers. I would make myself whole once more.

Monday, May 19, 2008


Zesiro was raised as an orphan, and an only child. The priests raised her as a living Goddess. Her name translates as Firstborn of Twins, which would imply she had/has a sibling, but she doesn't know of any, and her people simply do not remember a time before her life.

Has she begun her own family?
She doesn't have any children, and hasn't married, although has taken a consort from time to time.
If not, does she ever want to have a family of her own someday?
One day, she would like to pass on her legacy.
What type of person would be her ideal mate?
Her mate should be willing to stand up for himself, and not be intimidated by a strong, charismatic wife.
What would you be willing to do to protect such a person?
She would protect someone she truly loved with her life.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Where is her homeland?
The Floating Nile
What are it's people like?
In general, its people are easy going, peaceful, and productive.
Is she aware of its history?
In general, records of the time before her memory are hard to find, and most accounts of that period are treated as legends.
What are her opinions of home?
She loves her homeland, but in the last couple of years, has started to become a little bored.
Where is her hometown?
Her hometown is the royal city of Mennufer (the good city), also known as Ineb-Hedj (city of the white walls). It is located at the junction of the two halves of The Floating Nile.
What was the area like and how did it affect her?
The immediate area is almost completely occupied by the royal palace, government buildings, temples, and the men and women who serve as priests and government officials. Surrounding the city are the homes of the workers and farmers who support the city. As a result, she was insulated from the lives of the common people as she was growing up. In her early adulthood, she made some effort to learn more about their lives and livelihoods, but she still doesn't completely understand them.
What was childhood like for her?
She was raised as a goddess, not a normal human child. Her every whim and demand was met by servants and courtiers, and she was taught the legends of herself and her lands, and the true nature of The Floating Nile by the priesthood.
Did she have any childhood friends?
While she had a few playmates, she did not really have any childhood friends, as the children her age were awed by her divinity.
What conflicts might arise from her past?
Zesiro doesn't really have any memories beyond age eight or so, and has no memories of parents or other relatives. The history and legends of her people only speak of her being born from the sky. Her true parents, or other close relatives, might cause conflict should they make themselves known.
How does she view the heroes/legends of her country?
She tries to study them to get more information about her possible origins, although she is not a studious type, so the process is slow.

Physical Traits

How old is she?
How tall is she?
How much does she weigh?
150 lbs.
What is her general body type, frame, bone structure, and poise?
Tall, lithe, good bone structure
What is her hairstyle?
She has long, straight black hair she wears in a multitude of braids, or with headdresses.
What is her eye colour?
How attractive is she?
She is a goddess.
What is her most distinguishing feature?
Her striking good looks
Does she have any scars, tattoos, or birthmarks?
She has a birthmark in the shape of a scorpion on her stomach above her right hip. She also has tattoos of asps around her upper arms and ankles. The tattoos were done in her early childhood, and are often intertwined with actual snakes.
What is her handedness (left/right)?
Left Handed
What kind of clothing does she wear?
She wears clothing of the finest linen, embroidered with intricate patterns and inlaided with gold and jewels. Her arms, hands, feet, and neck are adorned with layers of jewelry and ritual insignia, and she wears a headdress of gold with lapis lazuli and fiance inlays, topped by a large, golden scorpion.
Does she wear makeup?
Her eyes are made up with kohl, and she sometimes uses henna to mark patterns or designs on her exposed skin.
What sort of vocal tone does she have?
Her voice has a flowing, lyrical quality, although it is known to turn sharp when she is angered.
Does she get sick?
She has never been known to be ill or injured in her lifetime.

Introduction Questions

Give a two or three word description of your character. (Describe their concept.)
Venomous Egyptian Goddess
Do they have any nicknames, street names, titles, and noms des plumes?
Pharaoh, Goddess of the Floating Nile, The Firstborn, Lady of the Two Lands, Divine of Appearance, She Who Tightens the Throat, Queen of All She Surveys
What is her full birth name?
Where does she live?
She lives on a spacecraft designed to emulate the ancient country of Egypt in shadow Earth. The craft is nearly 600 miles long and almost 300 miles across. Ancient legends hint at the possibility of other crafts existing in the shadow, but they have not been encountered in the span of written history.
Why do she live there?
From as long as she remembers, she has always lived there. It is her home.
What is her citizenship status?
She's the pharaoh, the ruler.