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Friday, November 30, 2012

Esto - The Unexpected

I know this place.  I've seen it in The Archiver and one of the old adds the DRC had before the last closing of the cavern under Cate Alexander.  This is Noloben.  Of all the possibilities this is one I did not expect.  My relto was not functioning - that should have been my first clue.  No sooner had I found the Triple Shell symbol I heard movement behind me and all around.  In the darkness I saw many creatures moving accompanied the light of sapphire eyes.  A Bahro walked up to me, placed his hand on my shoulder, and we linked.

I linked in with MidnightSun beside me and found myself in a tunnel before a chamber roughly the size of my relto.  The vaulted ceiling had small windows surrounding the circumference of the ceiling allowing a golden light to flow in.  The lower walls were covered in petroglyphs that occasionally pulsed soft blue.  The Bahro that linked us through made a crackling noise and seemed to indicate that we should move closer to the wall.  We advanced and the bahro around us seemed to take an increasing interest - their chatter becoming excited.

From behind came a voice.  A human voice.  I turned around and found Adelia standing beside a Bahro.  "Adelia!". I was overjoyed to see her.  Of all the Ages, I did not expect to find her here.
“Esto! You’re back on your feet!”
“I hear you had something to do with that.”
“Why are you here?  Everyone in the cavern is looking for you.”
Adelia noticed MidnightSun standing behind me.  “I remember you.  You’re the one Pantaleon went searching for.”  He replied with a mmmhmm and said nothing more.  “You asked why I’m here.”  She paused.  “That’s a bit of a strange story.”
“Go on” I encouraged her.

“Pantaleon had left me to care for you while he went in search for your friend here; I spent my time trying to find something that might help you.  At one point I had Gaelen of the Guild of Healers look at you, but she couldn't do anything more than provide a sedative to keep you from hurting yourself.  Occasionally I would get a message from Pantaleon but then he stopped responding.

“Shortly after there was another tremor.”  Her beat slowed.  “I remember Ae’gura shook violently and many explorers ran out into the streets hoping to find escape.  A few were able to relto out, but soon the books stopped working.  My relto was blank!”

“Next thing I knew a figure linked into the room.  I saw him move toward you but he was stopped.  Something that looked like a bubble appeared around you and prevented him from getting any closer.  Then he came for me.  Next thing I knew a Bahro linked in beside me brought me here.”
MidnightSun suddenly became interested.  “Who was it?”

“I’d never seen them before, but there is one thing I’ll never forget.  He had a tattoo on his face:  Two curved swords.  One below the other.”
“The Bahro” MidnightSun began.  “That must be why the linking books stopped working - both for Adelia and for you in the tunnel.”
“I can’t believe the Bahro would hurt any of us” I said to MidnightSun.  “The Bahro Nekisal haven’t been seen in the cavern for years.”
“I don’t think they intended to harm anyone.  The truth of the matter is we’re here now.  The question is: why?”
This question has stuck with me.  We’ve been here on Noloben for almost two weeks now.  Our KIs aren’t functional and I find myself wondering what is happening in the cavern.  There is much more to cover, but I grow tired.  I’ll be sure to bring everything up to speed soon.

Pantaleon - Change of Heart. Change of Plans.

It has been a long journey across these ages and now I feel as though the knowledge of D'ni History itself alone is holding me back as noted by Kadish's final remarks in his letter. Esto had previously mentioned that Catherine left behind Journals that were recovered by the DRC that defined the centerpiece of struggle before and after D'ni fell.

So, once again I ventured throughout the D'ni city streets asking anyone who passed by if they knew where I could find the information I sought. The new D'ni explorers that I have had the pleasure of meeting are kind like everyone is focused on rebuilding  even if it is not in a materialistic way. My bearings were re-directed toward the Guild of Greeters which is an easily accessible neighborhood. From there I was led to the classroom where I began studying the History of D'ni.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Pantaleon - Remark(able)

Concern.  That is what drove me to this point.  I felt it necessary to take my copy of Guildmaster Kadish's note to have it translated.  Unfortunately I have not dedicated enough time toward learning the D'ni language.

My best bet was to venture back into the city and ask other explorers for help.  That is when it struck me.  There are a multitude of explorers; all being...called.  Yeesha's calling.  Each of us are on different paths like branches connected to a great tree spreading outward and sharing our findings.  A new civilization born from a lost one.

After sometime I found an explorer that took a liking to the library. They were able to translate most of the writing, however; there were sections that had to guessed; nonetheless it reads approximately as follows:

I have met my end
My mortality overwhelms me.
I see its approach.
It is waiting and watching for my soul to depart.
Its acquisitions surpass my own.There are linking books here but I will not leave.
I have made my decision.I am here with all that I would desire.No one can take it from me.I will die here with them.This place is hidden and will remain hidden.If these words are found anyway, remember that I did not surrender!
I did not die with nothing!I died with everything.
Look, at all my possessions!
They belong to me and will be with me.
They belong to me and will be with me forever.
Guild Master Kadish

What a ghastly letter.  It reminds me how the  ancient Egyptian kings would be buried with their treasure.  Though not entirely the same as this was a choice that others of that time have not taken, however, it would appear Guildmaster Kadish had his final wish.  With Kadish's death it would appear the stench of corruption and greed has ended.  Now, I will return the pillars and then discover how the D'ni civilization collapsed.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Pantaleon - Final Thoughts Kadish Tolesa

Kadish Tolesa.  All that is known is that the creator was the renowned Guildmaster Kadish.  The remnants that are left are now nothing more than fragments of bone.  A fleshless grave for a once hierarchical society.  The vault is most astounding of all.  If you were to die tomorrow what would you do?  Where would you flee?  The apparent response: die with your wealth & riches within your own volatile corruption.  Self-destruction at its pinnacle.

There is a note that has been left behind.  It is in the D'ni written language and I lack appropriate deciphering skills.  There is writing on this note - These must be Yeesha's words.  Yeesha says that which is taken must be returned to restore the least.  Taking the final Pillar, I must now return them.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Esto - Visions Untangled

I have returned.  Again.  This time to the cavern itself.  I linked into darkness and soon I found my KI flashing.  A message from MidnightSun:
"It should all be clear now. You've been freed from the path of the stone."
He's right. The visions that tormented me before are unclouded and their revelation is clear. What's more, I know this revelation is not without reason. Something is wrong. The Triple Shell journey is more dangerous than I thought. It was not placed by Yeesha but by another; for what purpose I do not know. Two words. Names. Something runs through my head: Venalash and T'chuvahk. Their meaning and their purpose are unknown to me. Judging by the coordinates on my KI I think believe I’m in Descent, or at least some part of the long tunnel. Normally I would simply relto out, but the linking panel of my relto book is blank. Must be a result of the star fissure. I'll either have to find another way back to D'ni or wait until my relto works again.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pantaleon - Final Thoughts: Eder Kemo and Eder Gira

Needless to say, Eder Kemo and Eder Gira are beautiful but this beauty hides secrets.  Terrible secrets.

There are peculiar petroglyphs on the walls of the garden age.  Few of these make logical sense.  One resembles Gahreesen and one looks like Teledahn. Though this one strikes me most of all.

I have heard Yeesha speak of 'The Least' who could link.  Enslaved.  There is a crying eye symbol branded upon these figures.  Perhaps these symbols alude to 'The Least?'  The Bahro.

Under King Shomat's reign, this and many other garden ages were created.  Of these ages, the King had the best garden in D'ni.  None could compare.  When the King discovered there was another species occupying his garden age he had his brothers dispose of them in exchange for their own garden age. Looking to overthrow the King they did not finish their task and Shomat had a Prison Age book made for them.
Upon the brother's linking into the false garden age, he burned it, thus disposing of his own brothers. Greed, corruption, and power; this is what is lying beneath these lustrous waterfalls and vibrant plants. To annihilate a whole race for occupancy without diplomacy! Such atrocity befalls these wondrous ages.

Esto - In the Steps of Those Before Me

The steps before me are the last in this Path of the Shell.  I have taken time to understand this mechanism and the purpose of it's design.  Kadish was truly a genius in his own right to have created such a device.  It's strange that a mechanism created for the purpose of perpetuating a lie can in fact reveal the truth: Yeesha is The Grower.

While the tree before me is only a symbolic representation of terokh jerooth, having experienced the star fissure and the infinite nature of the Great Tree of Possibilities, the sight brings me chills.  I feel I am on the precipice of something more.  What comes next... We'll soon find out.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Esto - And the Path Will Be Made Known

On Friday he brought me back to the Watcher's Sanctuary.  We climbed the stairs and I found myself wondering why are we here?  I followed MidnightSun into the alcove and turned my attention to the books on display.  I opened the Prologue book and read what the Watcher wrote.
On the six hundred and twenty fifth month of my life I was gazing upon the star of Ces in the sky of the age of Windring. And at the time of my birth the star began to brighten until it became brighter than the rings themselves. And with a sudden brilliance it turned the night into day. And I beheld the fire of the Maker. And he spoke to me. And the fire of the Maker left me, and I saw only blackness, because my eyes were blinded. But his words remained…

To the side I heard a sound.  I turned and saw MidnightSun standing next to the door of the Path of the Shell.  The door was open.  I don't know how he did it but he opened the door!  I've read journals of other explorers who took the Path of the Shell long before the second restoration attempt and the joining of Cate Alexander to the DRC, but from what I could find none were able to open door after the Great Scream.

Now I understand.  Now I know why he had me scouring over those lines day and night.  He beckoned me to move inside and closed the door once I was in.  The scale of this mechanism is staggering.  My KI flashes with a message.  "I'll be waiting outside until you finish."

Friday, November 9, 2012

Midnightsun - Path to the Gathered

This morning I find myself relaxed in my perch on the rooftop of Takotah II.  Its a little funny to think I feel more accustomed to this roof than my room downstairs.  That room has become little more than a place to store things between my trips in and out of the cavern.  When I am in the city, this is where I spend my time.

Esto is growing weary with the work we've been doing.  I have been hesitant to move forward until he has a firm grasp on true meaning of just what it is we are studying.  I am still unsure but after the talk we had last night I feel he has enough understanding to decipher the puzzles that lie ahead.  My hope is that when the challenge rises he will know these texts by heart and use them as a guide through this journey.

Looking down, I see Esto walking toward the tent outside of Takotah II. “Pack a bag.  Today is the day”, I send him a KI message.  I watch as he stops to read it, then I see the grin and the bounce in his step as he enters Takotah II. That expression is one that all of us here in the cavern share.  The excitement at the prospect of a new adventure.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Esto - The Passage of Time

Activity in the cavern has died down over the past week.  Pantaleon has left to complete Yeesha's journey.  I pray he finds the answers he seeks.  My own studies on Words has yielded little more than strange shapes in my dreams and yet MidnightSun assures me the reasons will become clear; perhaps sooner than expected.  After pressing him, he finally said we would be visiting The Watcher's Sanctuary.  For what purpose I do not know for we have long since made our own copies of Words for study.

Over the last few days I have been contacted by a few old explorer friends absent from the cavern.  Telling them of what has occurred has been difficult.  The news of Adelia's disappearance is quite upsetting.  Fortunately, the search parties have continued in Pantaleon's absence.  Expeditions to the far reaches of the cavern and various ages have been thorough.  I hope they find her soon.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Pantaleon - Final Thoughts: Gahreesen

Lost between these walls.  Like a lair, Gahreesen, holds many rooms and passages; all for one purpose.  To protect, guard, and defend - generally associated with the welfare of others in a selfless act.  All that we have in prosperity we can lose; to have control backfire, trapped inside our own tyranny, recklessness, and pride.  Now these walls guard nothing but the memories of a once proud civilization.