Thursday, May 24, 2012

Excerpt: Kavalson's History of Arunë

Today is an excerpt from one of my big sourcebooks for Arunë, Orvius Kavalson's History.

Of the Kingdom of the Undying
Amongst the giants of Alhame there was born one whose mastery of magic was beyond those of the greatest Gigantine masters. As a boy he unraveled mysteries that elder sages had long troubled over, and it is said that he made alterations to the ancient runes that bound the flow of the Dragon's Breath and his writings made them stronger. He was named Athesphatos by his people and rose in his life to be called a living Titan. But ever and anon his thoughts drifted to the pain of mortality among all things that live save for the Dragon of the Earth alone. So at last he thought upon the skein of magic, which also is timeless, and he turned his mind often to the solution he saw therein. For the mind of Athesphatos lurked in corridors of knowledge twisted and strange. Thus came he to the understanding of the Necromantic Art at long last.

The Giants had never before shaped their magics to the reanimation of fallen flesh, nor the preservation of that which had aged past its time. Yet, the great Titans of their people could knit wounds with a thought and the Breath of the Dragon long was known to sustain the injured. Before the awful mind of Athesphatos turned upon the task, none before had questioned deeply how these strange arts worked. Then was Athesphatos called also Moros, which means "deathly-wise." For as yet his obsession had not burdened his soul with darkness, but before his end he would be called not Athesphatos Moros but Moros Aklaustos, the unwept.

In the history of the Gigantine lands, it is rare for two Titans to live at once within the borders of a single kingdom. Soon enough betwixt the Titan Laomedon (who was ruler of Alhame) and the Titan Athesphatos there was strife for he who was wise in death drew to him many other Giants who had fear of mortality in their hearts. Laomedon took this as a challenge to his authority and so he cast out Athesphatos Moros in exile; and the cult of Death descended the mountains of Alhame and entered the lowlands, and there Athesphatos Moros builded a place at the mountains' feet. After many years passed and the hall of Moros was grown silent with grim Death that deathly-wise Giant enacted rituals upon himself and his people so that they would not die. And though their skin hardened and the light of their eyes withered, they did not die. And to the halls of Moros there came Giants of Frost, the people of Skliros, and they too sat before the mighty throne that Moros built and soon there was a kingdom.

Beneath his watchful gaze, the people of Moros Aklaustros the Unmourned withered and died and lived again, as desiccated shells. And lo, they could not fall but to powerful sorcery or bodily dismemberment so vile that no magic could again rekindle the fire of life within. Even into the Fourth Age and the Fifth did this land of the undying endure, and it is said that the wizard Tharos, the Necromancer, learned his art from the halls of Moros where the Unwept Master did hold forth discourse on the secrets of unlife. Unto the middle of the Fifth Age, the Age of Dust, did Aklaustros rule his lands and it is said in the north, mayhaps truly, that there are places where he secreted his followers to lie in wait until an ending day when again he shall rise from his tomb untroubled by the peoples who destroyed him.

Yet what brought the Kingdom of the Undying low is not written. Some say the other Giants, the Ouranos, unmade it. Others have said that the men of Miles marched on those northerly lands, and still others that the Skinchanger tribes banded together to end the terror in the northern mountains. But none now can say, and truth is but a whispered rumor. Perhaps Moros Aklaustros did not die at all, but grew tired of his endless life after the long centuries wore upon him, and simply went to sleep.

No comments:

Post a Comment