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You all have served in Trual's service for a few years now. Serving him by spreading his influence, crushing his enemies, recruiting new servants and whatever else has been assigned for you. Your loyalty was tested and after you were tested you bathed in the Pools of Rebirth. The pools remade you, your mind was searched by the powers and you have been made strong. From the lowliest body comes some of the most powerful of creatures. From the vile, the most holy, and likewise. Yet all who know his service do not regret their choices nor are they questioning their faith in him.
All of you have seen him at work in his gardens or in meetings or even in passing. He rarely holds the same form for more than a week or a moment. His aura is what lets you know it is him. The power of a diety is uncomparable to anything else. There is no animosity in his punishments, only the thought to teach a lesson. Each failure is rewarded with appropriate punishment, if you lose a battle you will serve the master of arms for a year (sometimes as his practice dummy), and so on. His rewards for sucess are praise, power, the servitude of another, granting you an "excess" (for those with restained darker tastes, generally as punishment to another also), or in times of great reward; access to the Pools of Rebirth.
You rise from the steaming brilliant golden syrup that is the last of the three pools. The first a painfilled dark green boiling morass boils away the material that holds your true spirit. You scalded away your old form and floated, a mere whispy shadow of your self, only to decend into the second pool. The second a turbulant cyan pool of warm but thick pure planar essense, here the essense cooled your pain, soothed the burning sensation. It collected, unformed around you. You moved on to the next pool, power growing inside you at the interaction of the essense and your spirit. PLunging into the deep syrup of the final pool yoou felt the essense harden, congeal and then begin to slough off of you as you sank into the deeps. As the waste sloughs off you begin to rise slowly, knowledge of yourself and your true form fills you. As you face breaks the surface of the pools you can see in the dimness only the lowerlegs of the Keeper. The one of the three "Aspects" of Trual that are kept on the domain. He lowers his hand and assists you out of the pool. Silently he hands you a dry skin of a lamb for you to wipe away the waters and last bits of cast off essense. Motionless he waits, until you are finished. With a way of his changing hand, an opening in the wall irises. A chamber to rest yourself awaits.
After you rest and examine yourself you know few new things. Trual is your lord and master. You are now bound to his domain, you will return here upon your destruction on another plane. He has marked you and remade you, a small (1" round) raised circular spiderweb design is somewhere on your body, his infamous stamp that others in his service have spoken of. The mark of his true servants. And finally you are reborn, more powerful than any demon of your previous caste, stronger, and full of the potential to grow, unlike many immortals.
You rest, maybe even dream. You wake to the sound of thwall irising open, on the other side of the chamber the wall skims away revealing a large chamber. The stone walls a re fancifully decorated in scenes from the prime material. Farmers, temples, war, mountains, fish, many of the common scenes of life. In the middle of the room is a small altar upon which stands a large clear bluish gem, cut with an untold number of faces. Behind it stands a large red skinned masculine demon, a pit-fiend gone angelic. His is beautiful and horrific at the same time. As you step into the chamber you see others stepping out of similar nooks as you are stepping out of.
The dim light that suffuses every place within Trual's domain palls as fiery letters begin to write themselves above the gem in front of the demon/angel-thing. Congratulations, on being rewarded for service. You are now truly one of his. You all have been chosen for a great task. Each of you will have a role to play in the coming events. I suggest you get to know each other, and get beyond your old natural differences, as they are gone now. You will go the the prime material, to a world known a Clanth. Trual is unkown there. There you will spread the word of him, and bring him believers.
There are three primary goals for you.
1. An Icon of Trual, needs to be made by the mortals on the world.
2. Find any rouge immortals and bring them to Trual as believers, or remove them from the world.
3. Bring down the forces that govern the world so that Trual's Way can be openly accepted. Bring down the forces of law, of chaos, of righteousness, and of hatred. There is no room for zealots on his path.
Excellent Avatar of Uri by Retun of Lanky (Aka Lanky Bugger)
Waetir looks to be a humanoid of modest height, although his skin and body are different shades of blue, with his skin seeming to be only a thin membrane. Short hair, blue almost to the point of black is cropped and ends before touching the nape of his neck, sticks up and is slightly wild, a sight that is matched by the slight glint in his eyes, that of an almost mad look in his eyes, one that is easily held in check here, among his Lord and the others of his faith. Long wings flow from his back. Literally flow, as water can be seen flowing through the see-through skin, there are no bones, although they hold their form. Here in Trual's domain, Waetir feels no need to use the inherient invibility he has been granted, and stays visible, even though he knows most of his companions can most likely see him either way. It was a courtesy thing, for them.
The spiderweb symbol of Trual is emblazoned on his right palm, the symbol of his loyalty. Waetir's open hand extends Trual's salvation, and the closed fist is Trual's force.
Waetir looks to the others. "I greet you in Lord Trual's name. May his guiding force be known throughout the whole of creation. I am known as Waetir."
Stepping into the room, garbed only in a short kilt of black silk that hung from a simple belt of silver. He turned his head, his eyes -silver, for the moment- taking in each of his new companions in turn even as he nodded to acknowledge he understood the instructions. He stretched his long, lithe limbs luxuriantly, smiling. His skin was flawless, his proportions perfect, like a statue given life and motion and vivacious vitality. He smiled a smile like the sin of angels, displaying perfectly white, even teeth, and spoke in a melodious, honeyed baritone.
And I greet you in the name of our inestimable Lord Trual, eternal may his dominion be. I am called Zariel
He paused for a moment, stretching his vast, black-feathered wings before he continued
And since we are to be working with one another on this grand endeavor, I will speak plainly - I am a corrupter and a seducer. My talents lie in the silver tongue and the honeyed word, the knife in the dark and whisper in the ear. The best place for me is in the shadows behind the thrones of the mighty, turning them or replacing them as necessary.
"I am the cold destruction of those who do not follow our Lord. I strike without being seen against his enemies. Those who follow our Lord I help on the battlefield against common foes. Before our Lord, I was a healer, and I may in time try those abilities on once more, but not now."
A towering individual steps into the room, one of a height that dwarves the prior two individuals. The individual's body is colored a pale gray, almost the color of dead skin. Under each portion of this skin are masses of knotted muscle; no inch of fat can be seen on this body, and there is little question to how massively strong this individual is. A sparse mane of black hair graces the head of this individual, who's skin is otherwise smooth and unbroken. Both the mouth and eyes of this individual glow with an unearthly green light that is almost sickening, yet also entrancing, to look at.
Crossing his arms, the individual spoke with a rumble that seems to resonate throughout the other's bodies. I greet you in Lord Trual's name, may he be the nation breaker, nation maker. I am Excilath, and my power is as it appears. I am one of the strongest beings in creation, and just as hard to take down. I may serve as an army breaker, a commander, or even a threat to rally others to your thrall.
A figure draped in a thin flimsy robe glides into the room, with long golden hair flowing behind. Quietly the figure lands before the angelic demon, and curtseys. As she turns around to walk back a respectable distance, it is plain that the flowing robes do not hide her tanned skin very well. Her arms are athletic and tone, unlike the pale gray hulk of a thing nearby. The bright green glow of her eyes fades away as she looks at each of her new comrades in turn. She silently smirks, smug with the fact that her physical perfection is not only a fashion statement, but also an armor of faith, since it is her belief that Trual would not give her this form without it being useful and durable in its own way.
Celeste looks like an elf with long, shapely legs, and a large, perky bust. The soft clicking of her heeled boots fades away as she stops and introduces herself. "My current name is Celeste Guerrier. I have always been, and always will be, a part of Trual's will, even if sometime in the past I did not know it. Right now, I am one of our Master's celestial warriors, and I will stop at nothing to fulfill his every order. My speciality is not necessarily corruption, although I know how to do that quite well. Rather, I build trust between us and others...by mundane means or otherwise." Blue arcs of electricity sparkle around her momentarily, clearly a showoff of magical energy.
At this time, she performs a stretch, raising her arms above her head, causing her figure and chest to move in interesting ways, and the word "supple" to come to mind to some that may be watching. "Our task should be a simple one considering our nature and the nature of those we're trying to convert. Introducing a cult is something I've had experience with, and this is even easier due to the fact that the deity we are introducing is not a lie. I've many ideas on how to go about establishing a presence, but I shall wait for more details to be revealed."
Zariel nodded at Celeste's suggestion, casually eyeing her lithe form with approval. I agree, starting a religious organization is an excellent vector... I also find that turning existing power structures to our side through careful persuasion is an excellent method to use. It might be best to operate on multiple fronts so as to maximize our efficacy. But as you say, best to wait until we have more intelligence before we make any definite plans.
Although as for simple... I am unsure. If it were that easy, I'm sure it would have been done before... and our Lord would not have allotted so many accomplished individuals to the task. In my experience, there are always complications.
"A religious sect, with the backing of powerful creatures from beyond their prime. I do not think it would behoove us to have power as to preach healing, unless we have abilities I am not aware of. A more martial bent, one that promises victor's spoils to the faithful. The mortals always wish for riches and power beyond their own."
The appreciative looks do not go un-noticed by Celeste. "We need not promise powers of healing from ourselves. We can promise that the powers of healing will come to themselves naturally if they believe, which should be true enough if we can cultivate clerics of our Master from the populace. Besides, in my experience, tempting with spoils and and power beyond their ability to handle responsibly is a recipe to collapse the civilization, instead of a recipe to bolster it with our Master's teachings. We should lead by example...mostly" she says with a twinkle in her eye.
If we should establish a following, it should not be in an advanced nation. Such usually are too arrogant and set in their ways to embrace change. In the same way, a barbaric culture would not be suitable, for in addition they have their worships that are more integral to them then the civilized. Rather we should look towards a downtrodden nation and offer them a chance to rise up. Give them the truth, for if they side with us then our great power will be helping them. As they grow stronger, Trual grows stronger, and the resulting wars will force all nations to look upon themselves and adapt.
Motioning to the writings in the air, Waetir continues. "There is no room for those not of Trual's way. I will only give a mortal two chances to convert. Those who continually resist may change their mind after their death."
Zariel laughed lightly, his own eyes shifting from silver to a rich, luxuriant golden hueYou can't murder everyone who doesn't believe in Trual... far too inefficient. There are far more effective and enjoyable methods to convert them than the quick death of the sword. Of course, they require a deal of time and some specialized equipment... but in any case, such plans will have to wait until after we have established a power base.
And established kingdoms can be changed rather easily, provided it is done subtly and correctly. Power leads to decadent, and the decadent are ever easy to corrupt... offer them a few unknown pleasures or some paltry relief from their jaded existence and they are putty in your hand. Although I do agree that the poor and desperate also make excellent tools. It's all in your approach, really. And, as I mentioned, we can always use multiple methods.
A slight rumble, conceivably a laugh came up in Excilath's throat. No need to be so hasty friend, we are immortals after all. Regardless, even with a force such as us, there would be endless opposition. It is one thing to establish a base of power upon the world for Trual, it is another to dethrone other gods and attempt to slaughter nations as our first task. While I would not be afraid of divine wrath or the collective mortal might, I do not doubt we would fail unless Trual devoted an inordinate amount of resources.
While such is of course our end goal, it should be plotted methodically, and enacted over as much time as is required. Haste and slaughter, while pleasing, is in the end, self defeating. Let us establish a base of power such that at first we are ignored, and then when we are noticed we are too powerful to wipe out, and then finally we are powerful enough to turn the tide against any god or mortal that shall interfere.
The elf-like being's eyes are now a relatively normal shade of emerald instead of the entire eye glowing green. She holds her palms out to signal for everyone to sit back and relax a bit. "While I am not above going as far as causing a bit of trouble so we can then ride into town and solve the problem, so to speak, I really do see our roles as missionaries. We are tasked with bringing truth of Trual to those people so that *they* may benefit from it. And when people benefit from believing in Trual, they will do the work of spreading the word FOR us. Hurting the people we are trying to convert should be the last thing on our minds. That said, we have room for a bit of fun if there are troublemakers, but we should all keep in mind we are there to save the people from their ignorance. We are not there to primarily exploit them."
Once again, the diabolically beautiful creature nodded, giving Celeste a wide, wicked smile A very good point... we should focus on turning these people to our point of view, not destroy them. However, certain key personages - particularly monarchs and high priests - will likely require either a great deal of deception or outright removal, given how much they have invested in the status quo
Celeste returns Zariel's wide smile with a knowing one of her own. "Priests and monarchs are people too. They to can be turned. In fact, if we can turn the monarch, the rest of the job becomes so much easier because then we'll have the nearly unquestioned support of the existing infrastructure and social structrure. Those priests that are not corrupt worhsip the deities they choose to worship because they genuinely believe that the teachings of their deity is a good way to live and is good for their flock. If we can genuinely show them that living according to Trual's tenets will make the lives of them and their flock better, *and* is spiritually satisfying, there is a good chance we can convert even them. But, if they can't be turned normally, there'll be plenty of opportunities to use...magical means to get their support."
Zariel smiled ruefully and nodded once more. Very true, though I don't like to rely on magical methods of persuasion, at least not for a long term plan or for highly important targets... too many ways for it to go wrong. A genuine conversion, or at least a working relationship is always a superior option, as you already mentioned. . However, if they can't be converted, there are numerous options.
He rubs his hands together and chuckles softly. I must confess, I'm eager to get to work. It's been too long since I've put my hand to business.
"Diplomacy never worked for me, before Lord Trual rescued me. It always failed, leaving me to fend for myself, hiding from bindings placed on me, or bargaining off what little ability I did for some bare hiding spot for a night, before I was turned upon anyways." The water that flows through Waetir's body speeds up as he speaks, his agitation showing. "If we wish to take a monarchy, we will have to remove a monarch's current advisors if we wish to replace them, much less not have them putting up blocks to Lord Trual's requirements."
Waetir turns to the flaming words and the demon/angel creature. "Where are we to be sent on this world, if I may be so bold as to ask? My companions for this may have the ability to teleport themselves massive distances, but not I."
The large red skinned immortal watches the interplay silently. When Waetir asks him a question the wording from before fades away and is replaced by The world is most average in every way. There are large and small kingdoms, deserts, mountains, plains, and oceasn. You will begin in a beleaguered state bordered by three major rivers, and 2 larger nations. This has been determined to be the most open to influence of all sorts. With a wave of his hand, another doorway opens into the Pools. Through the doorway you can see the Keeper look up and nod.
The Keepers changing form solidify's for a moment before it stretches a draconic arm out over the golden pool. A jet of water shoots up and holds position under his hand. It twists into a long shard of crystal and hardens. The Keeper grasps the crystal and walks over to the dark pool. Again he hold his hand over the pool. IN the bubbling depths rises the form of a small homnunculos which shivers its way out of the pool. Striking swiftly the Keeper plunges the crystal into its head. It shudders and the golden glow suffusesit for a moment. The ever silent Keeper points to the red one and the homonunculus scampers to him.
It looks odd as the now ashen skinned small humanoid thing moves about with no cares, except for the shard of crystal sticking out of its head. The red writing appears over its mishapen head. This crystal will travel with you and be the basis for the Icon.
Excellent Avatar of Uri by Retun of Lanky (Aka Lanky Bugger)
Zariel watched the process curiously as the keeper of the pools forged the homonculus that would be the basis for Trual's idol in this new world.Wondrous... does this mean we are ready? if so, perhaps it is best we get underway... we have a great deal to do, and the swifter we act, the easier our task shall be.
"Haste shall beget only thy quickened destruction, devil." Came the sudden words of a being previously silent throughout the entire discussion, her telepathic words echoing to all within. Her unearthly voice was soft and melodic, yet it was flat and full of stern condemnation for Zariel. This would be a tone the others would soon grow accustomed to...
"Mortals die and their knowledge of us shall fade unto obscurity, yet our machinations will be felt by their brood. A mortal epoch is but one breath to the undying, and this one," She continued, referring to herself in the third person ", would desire our Master's goals realized unerringly."
"Such an infernal lust for corruption shall consume thy better judgement, Zariel."The celestial said as her fair face indicated a bit of disdain. Though she was beautiful by human standards, the contortion of her face and harsh disposition did a bit to dull the effect. Wearing nothing but her natural form, the angel put a hand on the pale golden flesh of her hip and stared coldly at the devil. The tips of the celestial's ashen hair descended to her back and meshed in with the feathery wings sprouting lazily from her shoulderblades. "Thy name is ill-fitting. Not nigh as much as what that one fathoms herself to be, however."She said as her golden eyes turned to Celeste, "A Celestial Warrior."
"...But if our Master envisions worth in such lowly subjects; then this one is not to cast her doubts upon His ways." She admitted matter-of-factly. "If thou must speak to or of this one, then do so by the name of Sophiel."
__________________ Paragon Badger (14 HP)
Str 23, Dex 32, Con 30, Int 17, Wis 27, Cha 19
AC: 33, Claw: +29 Melee (1d2+19)
Body by Jake Army. Avatar by Kyace.
Last edited by Paragon Badger : 06-24-2008 at 01:23 AM.
Zariel turned to the creature that called itself Sophiel, smiling sardonically and giving her a bow at the waist. A chuckle spilled from his lips as he looked her up and down slowly, letting his gaze linger in ways that he knew would draw the celestial's irritation.
Ah... come now, angel, there's no need for that tone. We are on the same side here. I merely seek to fulfill our master's desire in the most efficient way possible. If honest conversion is an option, so much the better... it's just that mortal hearts and minds seem to respond so very well to what is commonly known as corruption. Vice takes hold more quickly than so-called virtue... at least in my experience
He ruffled his wings a bit, his smile widening a fraction As for my name... it was given to me by my previous master, and I've kept it as a reminder of how much better the one I follow now is. Still, for all his faults, Asmodeus does have a sense of humor, doesn't he? That was the only time he ever really took an interest, was my descent and my first rebirth... The reasons behind my naming are too complex to go into the moment, but suffice to say, it was yet another twist of the knife at his former fellows. Ironic, yes, that he used to be among the Celestial host? One of the greatest. It's a fascinating story, the Fall... so many versions... and a very pointed reminder.
He laughed again, still eyeing the celestial, and then he winked. In any case, I'm glad you can put aside your natural animosity. I promise not to dine on infants or terrorize any orphans, if it makes you feel better.
Celeste gives a quick nod to the celestial, her face showing nothing but professional respect. "Our charismatic friend here is correct. Corruption should be our last resort, for it leads to needless destruction. Why should we corrupt what we intend to own? Afterwards we'll just have to clean the mess up. It would behoove us to proceed with this mission as if we were a diplomatic envoy...albeit one with much power to showcase our problem-solving skills should the populace require a demonstration of Trual's embrace."
<ooc> I gotta go to bed. Will finish this in the morning </ooc>
Hah, I would never have guessed, but I must say I, in part, agree with the celestial. Most of you do not have the perspective that I do of the world, of the lesser people, of those that serve rather then rule. Before my rebirth, I was a mere foot soldier. Only the unusual quality of having an individual intellect marked my apart from my peers. Have you ever heard the saying? "It's better to be one of the grunts in the field. It might not give you the 'bigger picture', but it gives you a much truer one." Seeking to corrupt the heads of the worlds governments is one thing, and will help to prevent police action against us, however it probably will not give us as great an inroad into Trual's goals as one might think. To gain a person's faith is different from gaining a person's fealty, and such is what we must do.
However, again, good works and healing will only go so far. We must prove that we are able and willing to back Trual's word, that we seek to be a force of moderation and of benefit to the world that all the other gods are too mired in hubris to provide. We must not give into our baser impulses, and while I know I'm not one to talk, these would ruin us before we began. Working together, celestials and infernal united in raising the world up to a better place, will also go far towards this goal, however we ascertain it must be done.
As his speech rumbled off to a halt Excilath smiled, a truly jarring sight. If I may suggest, given the rest of our natures, it might be in our best interests to place Sophiel in a position of authority within our ranks. Not so much our commanding officer, but one able to veto our plans and reign us in. Personally, I know that such will be welcome, for as much as I wish to serve Trual to all my capacity and enact his dream, I am a creature of my nature. Whereas Sophiel, whom I presume is a celestial warrior, is familiar with the neccesities of battle and the other acts we must do to achieve our goals, but it is within her nature to temper her acts to only what is needed, rather then what is desired.
Last edited by Incendius : 06-24-2008 at 02:21 AM.
The Red One holds his hand over the the crystal which begins to float above its pedastal. It spins gently the Red One says in a deep resonant voice "Clanth" A single facet lights up, he touches his clawed finertip to the facet. A glowing portal irises out of the air, on the other side you see a dirt crossroads in a wooded area. The writing appears again in front of the Red One This is your destination. If you have any questions ask them now. The portal will remain open for an hour.
The homonunculus jerkily knuckles its way over to stand in the middle of the group, seeming to await orders from someone.
Excellent Avatar of Uri by Retun of Lanky (Aka Lanky Bugger)
The body is necessary to maintain the integrity of the crystal. The crystal houses a tiny mote of Trual's essense, it needs a life force to sustain it until it is bound by mortals into a solid form, the Icon. You will need at least one hundred willing mortal souls to give themselves to Trual.
The ceremony and makings of the Icon are up to you and the populace. If it is somber, or frenzied, joyous or dark, it matters not to Trual. Do not allow the life of a mortal to be sacrificed to him, you all know that this is abhorrent to him. Once the Icon is in place, Trual's power will have a gateway to Clanth. True clerics can then be granted power there, until then you are the only powers of Trual on the world.
Excellent Avatar of Uri by Retun of Lanky (Aka Lanky Bugger)