Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Started by Jonathan Walton, April 16, 2005, 06:50:37 AM
Quote<Paganini> There's a place. It's old. Wet and slimey, green blocks. Black water runs through it, a pit filled with the bones of the dead. It's my temple.<Paganini> It's connected to the river by a tunnel.<Paganini> Soon, the new Lock & Dam will be built there, which will flood it. Maybe even crush it in the construction work.<jwalton> cool.<jwalton> I don't think I have a temple.<jwalton> I survive because of too old ladies who still sing my songs in the late afternoons, remembering their dead husbands and the harvest dances when they were young and lovely.<Ashera> i think i'd almost forgotten myself until recently<jwalton> what happened to make you remember?<Ashera> when some young women started getting into crafts and heritage and started making jewelry and things with my symbols on them<Ashera> and wishing and dreaming about beauty as they did<Paganini> I will eat them.<Paganini> Foolish happy symbols.
Quote<Paganini> The temple is very square, dark. The only light shines down through a few drains in the celing, grated with crusty bars. The walls are slick with green slime.<jwalton> Enter the cat, stage left.<Paganini> A ribbon of black water flows down the center of the temple, like an aisle in a church, glistening with sludge.<Ashera> Jeslyn enters, hesitantly picking her way through the slimy patches<Ashera> She's not happy about being down here where it's so wet, but she knows she needs to be here.<Paganini> On his dais, Slyx shifts his bluk. His scales whisper in the muck.<Ashera> She approaches the center and stops, trying to collect herself<Paganini> "Iss that you, ssisster?"<Ashera> "It is, brother."<Ashera> "Certain tokens of my power have been destroyed recently. I believe you had something to do with that."<Paganini> Slyx opens his outer eyelids. Their faint glow casts a shade of pale green over the temple.<Paganini> "Mm, yess. Very... tassty. Ssuch little happy thingss... Why do you make them, ssisster? Foolissh vanity."<Paganini> Slyx flicks his toung out and back, as though savoring a lingering flavor.<Ashera> Jeslyn arches her back in annoyance, then settles back down. "You know that such vanity brings me power."<Paganini> "Little powerss for little peopless. Ssuch have we become, ssisster."<Paganini> "Thiss place... it iss my my vanity. And the unfaithfull sscheme to take it from me."<Ashera> "And that is why you call me with your destruction?"<Paganini> "Ssss..."<Paganini> "Your vanity makerss... old women... they know. Assk them yoursself."<Ashera> "And how is this my concern?"<Paganini> Slyx opens his inner eyelids, a balefull viridian grin. "You will ssee, ssisster. Ssss...."<Ashera> "I tire of this place. Must you always live in such surroundings, brother? Perhaps if you had surrounded yourself with beauty it would not have come to this."<Ashera> She gets up and begins to walk out, then flicks her tail and turns back to Slyx. "I will see what may be done."<Paganini> Slyx dives from his dais, slithering into the pool.<Paganini> "The offeringss of the faithfull, ssister," he hisses after her.
Quote<jwalton> "Why, my dear! These earrings are SO BEAUTIFUL! Why, if my late husband William had lived to see such things. He could sing the Song of Cat's Eyes as well as anyone in town."<jwalton> She winks at the college student. "That's why I married him, after all."<Ashera> "Thank you, Grandmother. It took me a lot of tries to get the design right."<Ashera> (i'm thinking they use "grandmother" as an honorific)<jwalton> "These look just like a necklace he used to wear, in fact. I'm pretty sure he was wearing it when we buried him, but I'm not sure."<jwalton> "You know how the mind goes..."<jwalton> She glances out the window, in thought.<Ashera> "What was William like?"<jwalton> She looks back over, her eyes full of joy and a little sadness. "My William?" Now she smiles more fully. "He was tall, but not too tall. And his eyes were full of light. You know..."<Ashera> "I wish I had a boyfriend..."<jwalton> "He used to prance a little when he walked. So full of spirit, that man. And everybody in town knew who he was. He would walk down the street and have to shake 6 hands before he got 5 blocks."<jwalton> "Aw, my dear..." the woman says, taking her by the hands.<jwalton> A little moth settles on her shoulder.<Ashera> The student moves to flick it away. "Grandmother, there's a bug on your shoulder."<jwalton> The woman snatches her hand quickly.<jwalton> "Don't, honey. Don't you dare! Don't you know that moths are the lover's hope?"<jwalton> "No wonder you ain't got a boyfriend." She smiles.<Ashera> The student smiles back at her. "I've never seen a moth like that one before, though."<jwalton> "hold out your hand, dear."<Ashera> she holds out her hand<jwalton> the old woman gently coaxes the moth off her shoulder and onto the student's palm.<jwalton> It's creamy white, with long silver antenna. And tiny dinnerplate moons peek out of darker clouds on both wings.<Ashera> She cups her hand gently, making sure not to crush it as she examines its wings<Ashera> "That almost looks like one of the necklace patterns you showed me."<jwalton> The grandmother nods. "Moths are the moon's children. They come around harvest time, to keep the gatherers company when they bring the crops in."<jwalton> (Pag, you wanna intrude?)<Ashera> "I've never made that one. It uses too many pearl beads."<Paganini> (Yeah.)<jwalton> "Well, it might help you catch a boyfriend. Harvest time is for other things than just eating. There's the dancing, and laying in a field underneath the stars..." she trails off and winks.<Paganini> The front door bangs open, and a young man bursts in. He's disheveled an grimy. Mud cakes his black boots and smears his calf-length duster.<Paganini> "Grandma!" he shouts. "Grandma! You're never going to believe this!"<jwalton> The moth flutters to the cieling.<jwalton> "What is it, Simon?"<jwalton> "What's happened?"<Paganini> "There were some divers out this-morning exploring the site. You won't believe what they found!"<Paganini> He thrusts forward a muddy palm.<Paganini> "It's just like that stuff you were making such a big deal about at the art fair last week."<jwalton> The old woman goes over to examine closer.<Ashera> the scrawny gray cat that was lapping water from a bowl in the corner moves forward and rubs against the student's leg<Paganini> There are two stone amulets rolling around in the silt on his palm, obviously ver old, but still bearing visible marks.<jwalton> She takes them over to the sink and rinses them off, to see the marks more clearly.<Paganini> "The divers said there's a whole *building* full of this stuff. Not just jewelry, but statues, stone pottery. It's like an underwater archeological site. In the middle of Big River!"<Ashera> The student moves to the sink, craning over the old woman's shoulder to see the amulets<jwalton> In her palm, the old woman can clearly make out a spiral that emerges from a circular design.<Ashera> "Those patterns do look kind of familiar..."<jwalton> She mumbles, "The serpent and skull."<jwalton> She clutches her heart, "No."<Ashera> "Grandma? What is it?<jwalton> "Simon, call the construction company."<jwalton> "Tell them they have violated a burial ground and must stop. Now."<jwalton> She drops the shards in the student's hand.<Paganini> Simon looks at her in astonishment<jwalton> "Here you go dear.<Ashera> "A burial ground?"<Ashera> She takes the amulets and examines them.<Ashera> "They're like the ones in that book you showed me..."<jwalton> They're made out of bone.<Paganini> "I can't do that! I'm just an assistant engineer! Besides, this is the 21st century. I thought you'd be interested in a fascinating historical discovery. I should have known you'd start off with all this mumbo-jumbo."<Paganini> Simon stomps out.<jwalton> "Well, sort of a burial ground. But we didn't use to bury our dead. We did... other things."<jwalton> "Simon! Si-MON!"<Ashera> "I can call, but I don't know if they'll listen to me."<jwalton> She smiles, "Every little bit helps, dear."
Quote<jwalton> we could have the next scene be a flashback to the fall of the original temple, when the animals were still gods?<jwalton> and maybe we could figure out that there's some ancient enemy who's encouraging the company to go ahead with the construction?<jwalton> and then quit for the night?<Ashera> sounds good<jwalton> Pag, what did the People used to do with their dead?<Paganini> They gave them to the river.<jwalton> And the temple was built on the river, as a place to throw them in?<Paganini> Exactly.<jwalton> cool.<Ashera> how about the bone amulets?<Paganini> Then the current would take them down to the domain of Slyx<Paganini> I think the amulets were a source of power for Slyx, just like they are for Jeslyn.<Paganini> That's why he understands them, and likes to eat hers.<Paganini> So, the amulets were the payment for Slyx to accept the dead.<Paganini> They're sad little vanities, like Jeslyns are happy ones.<jwalton> and the People started burying their dead with Christianity, or because they were seduced by a rival god?<Paganini> Right.<Paganini> And the temple was eventually flooded.<jwalton> well lets do the flooding of the temple. all the gods are meeting there and the water is rising.<Ashera> okay<jwalton> and the old priests are trying to get out.<jwalton> and some people are trying to save some sacred stuff<jwalton> and they're asking the gods why they could let this happen.<jwalton> and so the gods show up.<Paganini> Cool<jwalton> and maybe we can finally get to roll and show off our god-powers.<jwalton> :)<Ashera> heheh<Ashera> so why *are* we letting this happen? figure out in scene?<jwalton> yeah, I figure some rival supernatural power.<jwalton> who's grown more powerful than us.<jwalton> like Jesus or the guy upstream.<jwalton> or maybe both.<jwalton> maybe it's unclear at this point.<jwalton> or maybe Slyx is mad because he's not getting his quota of bodies.<jwalton> and so refuses to save them once the flood starts.<Paganini> Wow, that would be cool.<Paganini> All this has been Slyx's fault all along!<Paganini> He ends up living in a sewer with crap for offerings, because he was too ticked off to stop the river from flooding.
Quote<jwalton> The moth circled the rising waters before settling on the roof of the temple. There was a flash of moonlight amid the evening darkness and then a young mad stood in its place, clothed in white, carrying a hollow reed.<jwalton> He blew into the reed and a eerie note rang out over the river, sounding deep into its depths. The note said, "Where are you, brother?"<jwalton> He blew it again and a high screech emerged, traveling across the lands along the riverbank. The screech said, "Sister, I call out to you."<Ashera> A sleek panther slunk into the temple from out of nowhere. A perfumed mist surrounded her, and there stood a young woman, with night-black hair shimmering. "I am here, brother."<jwalton> "Our people suffer, yet our brother does not show himself. Is there something amiss?"<Ashera> "Recently he has been more withdrawn even than usual. There must be."<jwalton> The young man gestures with his hand and a flock of moths plucks a child from the flood and carries her to safety.<Ashera> She raised her hands and clapped her wrists together. The bells on her bracelets tinkled, the sound echoing. "Brother, I call you."<Paganini> Slyx spears his head up through the river surface.<Paganini> "What iss it now?"<jwalton> The reed becomes two and then four and then more, a raft atop the current. Zyg stands before his brother's emerged head, a palm facing upward.<jwalton> "Brother, why do you allow this?"<Ashera> Jeslyn walks serenely over the waters on a strand of light until she is in front of Slyx.<Paganini> "Iss thiss my land? Are thesse my peopless? Where iss the tax that musst be paid?"* Paganini wags his head over the riverbank.<Paganini> "I hunger. The people have forssaken the price. Let them pay with their blood."<jwalton> "Brother, the people turn away from you, from my sister, from me. They do not pay the tax because they are no longer ours."<Ashera> A cat leads a small boy out of a mass of debris and into the arms of his mother.<Ashera> "If we would keep what little we have, we must help them."<jwalton> "The ones who are ours, they drift away with the water."<Paganini> Slyx thrashes his tail.<Paganini> "What iss that to me? The people live sso that they may feed me in death."<Paganini> "Sstop the river yoursselvess, if foolissh peopless are sso dear to you."<Ashera> Jeslyn gestures and a shimmer rises, protecting the walls of the temple from the water caused by Slyx's thrashing<jwalton> Zyg gestures and rocks emerge from the sea, fortifying the foundation against the crashing waves.<Ashera> "If the people no longer live, there will be none to feed you."<jwalton> "If the people no longer live, we will not be long for this world."<Paganini> "Then I will ssurvive on the muck of the bottom crawlerss ass I have thesse many monthss."<Paganini> Slyx is begining to sound angry.<Paganini> He thumps his head on the bank and the ground shakes.<jwalton> The rocks disappear into the sea, the foundation falters.<Paganini> "I have flessh! Human food iss tassty, but I will ssurvive without it. Will you?"<Ashera> The shimmer fades away, and water sloshes against the temple walls.<jwalton> "Brother, you have hurt us all."<jwalton> A moth drifts above the waters, towards the fading light.<Ashera> "When you are tired of the muck, remember this day."<Ashera> A misty panther stalks away from the temple.<Paganini> Slyx dives into the river, eyes burning bright with rage.
Quote(22:41:23) jwalton: cat, snake, and moth?(22:41:32) jwalton: maybe we were once a local pantheon?(22:41:42) jwalton: so antagonistic, somewhat, but also family, in a way.(22:41:51) Ashera: okay(22:42:33) jwalton: and our people just don't exist anymore, except for maybe a few, who occasionally will recite minor rituals, on special occasions.(22:42:47) jwalton: Ash, you have a name?(22:42:49) Paganini: Very cool(22:42:51) Ashera: Jeslyn(22:43:03) Paganini: So, the three of us are like all that's left?(22:43:04) Ashera: (was thinking of one)(22:43:10) Paganini: All the other fallen gods have faded away?(22:43:35) Ashera: maybe there are others, sort of, but they've almost wholly reverted to their animal natures(22:43:38) jwalton: well, the other gods are just equally fallen. those of other pantheons might be around, but the rest in our associated group probably just faded away.(22:43:45) jwalton: yeah, what she said.(22:44:11) jwalton: so what're our problems? other scheming ex-gods?(22:44:18) jwalton: the city trying to destroy us?(22:44:45) Ashera: how about there are a couple of people left with the "old blood" in them, and they're in danger?(22:45:07) Paganini: I don't think I care about them.(22:45:12) jwalton: okay, and if we lose them we totally revert to being animals?(22:45:25) jwalton: hmm... that may be okay.(22:45:34) jwalton: but maybe you have a different problem.(22:46:00) Paganini: Forsake me? I'll kill everyone in the entire city. Once they live in *my* realm, then they'll know, won't they.(22:46:00) jwalton: maybe, you still draw power from the spirits of our dead followers.(22:46:14) jwalton: you sure are an uppity snake.