To be honest it surprised her that nobody commented on the huge and very peculiar stone sticking out of the river as they passed by it. Any other day she would have made a big deal out of this, but given the shocked state in which the whole team still was after the earlier life threatening events, she tried to shrug it off and just forget about it. But for some reason however she discovered she just couldn’t and she kept wondering about the face she (thought she?) saw stuck/emerging/transformed/captive in the stone. What strange epithets to use. It was just a stone. Surely!She was ashamed of herself for thinking like that, after all maybe it was just some natural rock formation, an accident of the weather corrosion, or maybe who some kind of long forgotten meaningless sculpture. Why was she still thinking about it!?!? It had been more than an hour now. And not like she didn’t have the opportunity to raise the issue: everybody was silently walking along in shocked exhaustion, with only the quiet hum of those annoying mosquitoes to be heard. She could’ve said something! Did nobody else notice it? Was it too late to tell them how it made her feel? Would she just make a fool of herself? And why couldn’t she stop thinking about it? And then there were these other thoughts…
And then the fire which undulated in weightlessness turned to sound, pulsating waves of it radiating and spreading with flows of deep blue wrapping around them like magical ribbons.
In the middle of the cavern was a white glowing almost milky liquid that would gradually thin into the thickness of a glowing fog. At first I noticed an ominous shadow swimming a few centimeters underneath, but then it rose and broke the reluctant surface only to emerge and start slowly lifting into the center of the lake like a majestic living chitinous column.
By my third week of captivity I have realized that what I initially took to be a bunch of mindless giant insectoid beasts was far more than that, that it was a society, complete with social norms, cultures and an intricate religion. From my strangely manufactured cage I had now seen how three times a day a “chosen one” would be elected by group consensus and it would have what I can only assume was the honour of getting to carry their idol/deity through the community, to the great reverence of the others (one day I observed the individual for the whole next day and he seemed to have temporary higher privileges as a result). This moment was apparently of great sanctity, not to be disturbed, as unfortunately some of my fellow prisoners had learned. Normally nobody seemed to pay attention to us in preparation for some great ritual, BUT, anybody who spoke louder than a whisper during the procession was promptly silenced… forever. I write these things down in the journal today also, in the hope that when the great ceremony happens and if I am right I will be taken away they will ignore this little leather bound notebook and then after the next migration somebody of my own species will find it and learn something from it, that it may not be too late for them also and they may learn from our mistakes.
——— from “The lost notebook” ———
The music now reverberating through disoriented air molecules was as impossible as the feelings that the crowd was experiencing. Even as their minds’ eyes were opening to see the stage in it’s true frightening form, their spirits were lifting with the growth of the repeating musical pattern into a crescendo of fiery emotion. The couple of hundred in the audience today were any day of the week of the type that would gladly abandon rationality for an urgency of acting on their intuitive feelings, but as the chorus approached they indeed lost all such pretense of either rationality or of the glorified social norms they normally had replaced it with.
Newspaper clipping report on “The unbelievable incident at the National Opera House”
“And should you ever get squeamish thoughts, remember, nature is the best instructor in it’s ruthless ways. It teaches us that always and everywhere the inefficient is eaten away and reused towards the growth of another being more adapted to see the nutrient where others perceive just disgusting waste or do not use the striving essence to it’s fullest. Any niche that has an opportunity will always and everywhere be eventually filled by somebody… or someTHING better able to use those resources.”
Excerpt from the instructional books written by the frightful plantmaster Jooirkhi’ih the IIIrd
The legends say Narra-Ku’thm used to be the capital of an ancient forgotten empire, but then they became so decadent that the Gods of Light abandoned it, and the Shadow Deities took an interest. The inhabitants built a great temple to honor their great hunger for passion and life, which lead to a renewed bloom of their empire, until one frightful day the whole city was swallowed by the vengeful earth. This is where the legends end and well documented history steps in, because 3 centuries ago this ancient metropolis has risen again as a moving city, only partially devoid of life, carried by a frightening great tentacular mass from the depths, and in constant motion. Not fast motion, mind you, to a casual observer it looks just like an old ruin, for it moves just a few meters per year, not enough to notice with the naked eye, but enough to frighten all who ever visited it with the implications that this entails. A few end-of-days cults moved into it immediately, along with the adventurous and extravagant, and even the old temple started to see a resurgence of the old rituals. But nothing happened. In a few years caravans of goods and trade started to include it in their routes yet again. Who knows, maybe in a few more centuries of uneventful strangeness all will be forgotten, and in that behavior so typical of the short lived humans this city will pulse again with great crowds of people spreading out and conquering the world from their moving fortress.
Many of the paintings of Lucilian Bradley were controversial, some were even banned by the art community, but, in his morbid fascination with the unknown, he didn’t really care about that. However there was one in particular that he exposed that night at the new gallery that caused the outrage to explode into incendiary violence. In truth is, even having barely escaped the burning building and the furious mob, he was secretly happy IT was swallowed by the flames. The fact that his paintings were inspired not by imagination but by the demonic trance visions was his dark secret, one that he could live with, but what he saw when he painted that particular one traumatically opened his mind to the horror that some abominations can occasionally fuse, creating fresh new horrors.
However, a few weeks later, his secret relief shattered on the cliffs of reality as he received a large check with the post. Normally he would’ve celebrated the huge sum of money, fueling his expensive decadent lifestyle, but, to his unease, the check revealed that the secret collector who had been generously bidding at the exhibition auction somehow managed to save that painting and wanted to thank him. Lucilian wished at least he hadn’t known! From that day on he started praying for engulfing fires, seeing them as paths to salvation.
Xanadians perceive the world not through color wavelengths but as a form of bounce-back melody of the universe, a living song that’s ever-changing with their motion. Woe unto the man that becomes part of this song. He might hear beautiful rhythmical bony clicking that delight his ears, and a deep low vibration wonderfully going through his body… but not for too long. Few are knowledgeable enough of the secret world around us to run with all their strength at the first sounds of this amazing melody.
When the Rogganite first arrived, they thought it to be reason for great celebration. The Pharaoh instructed the priests to make a great feast in it’s honor, hoping to thus secure his lineage’s rule. He was struck with fear as the priests told him the Rogganite had come not to help, but to rule as God among men.
I had escaped my dimensional experimentor’s captivity through that stupid accident that could’ve well ended my existence, but instead set me free. But I did not know what to do with my new-found freedom. The huge alien distorted manifold castle I was in had endless corridors mirroring backward into endless rooms each more strange than the previous. In one such room I found a long rotten corpse that looked almost humanoid as it was sitting on a surprisingly well maintained luxury soft leather couch, with some kind strange helmet on. In an unexplainable morbid curiosity I put it on, and I was instantly transported to something that I strangely knew to be one of the orbiting moon’s volcanic crater… which to my surprise seemed still active and steaming, and teaming with strange extraterrestrial insectoid life. It seamed to mean me no harm, but instead of safety, the sight of their hive mind-collective filled me with an overwhelming feeling of celestial loneliness mixed with fascination.
In many cultures across the wide green earth storks are associated with the bringing of babies. Of course that is primitive nonsense, weather through natural science or common knowledge we all know of how babies are really made. There is however a bit of truth behind this myth, the truth of the Swhuushirimi Predatorius that might have inspired the legend. Though a being of the spiritual plane and thus invisible to most observers, every one in about ten thousand men are born with the aberration of glimpses into the spiritual world, and such men sometimes see a flicker of a Swhuushirimi as it brings the free choice chaotic spirit of the child (though often only years after the lump of clay enters the world).
edge of page scribbled annotation on the apocryphal writings of the heretic Narimian Opteul.
The warehouse smelled bad. No wonder, considering the piles of skin, flesh, torn scales and organs wrapped in fresh leather laying across the floor. Yet in the middle of it all the flesh-merger worked undisturbed by all this. Occasionally he would reach into a pile and take a required bit of tissue to add to his creation, as needed. This one had taken longer than expected due to the calibrations needed, but he was confident his next attempt of electrification would bring it to wonderful life. He worried for a moment of the unpredictable resultant mixture instincts it would have, but he shrugged it off in his scientific curiosity.
“Seeing” into 5 and 6 dimensional space was NOT the problem. He had told those fools at the military this many many times, and brought incontrovertible evidence that his formulas were correct. The problem was the complex mathematics required to process the data thus obtained and make any sense of it for the frail human minds. They had argued that it would require taxing the masses very heavily indeed to build a computing machine as powerful as he had asked for, and were about to cancel his beloved morbid baby project, but then some older glory hungry generals (of the type fearful that this would be their last chance at greatness) came to his rescue by dangling the threat that some other country would get this before them, and plus the high technology jobs thus created, so he got the funds. 5 years, an imperial fortune and a few hundred burned out top scientists later, he had his machine and today was the day when they would use it for the first time. The audience was filled with elder statesmen when the first 5 dimensional project appeared. It was later not easy to then explain to the curious newspapers how such a large group of top officials could all have a heart attack at the same time, but with some diversions and story alterations it worked in the end. The project was cancelled and buried. Deep. Very very very deep.
Gabriil was already 50 years old when he finally inherited his grand-Grandfather’s old mansion. The will had been convoluted to execute and full of more than peculiar conditions, but now he had fulfilled them all. Many ancient treasures awaited him in the old house, mysteries he’d probably spend the rest of his life to decipher, but now they were all unimportant as he rushed to the attic where he indeed found the tome he had been planning for all his adult life: “The Horrificus Magnus” !!! It was finally his to study!
“I was prepared for the next time. It wasn’t cheap, had to sell one of the smaller family mansions, but I was prepared. So, 3 seasons later, when the caravan came through town again, I went straight to the old gypsy lady. Upon giving her the gold and diamonds (the only currency she would accept) she sold me her small bottle. There were just a few drops inside, but I knew it was worth it. As instructed, I went home and lied down on the big bed, after of course having arranged for 2 servants to stand by should there be emergency need for help or to run for a doctor. I put a droplet into my left eye and two into my right eye, just as she told me… but nothing happened. Where was the Deptais!?! I waited a few minutes feeling ashamed like a little kid who still believes in dragons, and I was just about to stand up and do something I would regret when it hit in: I suddenly found myself floating in a sea of colors, the room faded into a blur of violent spectacle of vibrancy, and true to the promise, I saw a couple of Deptais come attracted by the smell of the drops. They were excited, talking constantly in a language I so wished I could understand… and one, one was in particularly animated… and even as I watched him (and it knew!), to my amazement it split into two similar and yet different parts, which then proceeded to complete themselves. It was all worth it, just for that moment!”
Excerpt from the dying journal of trans-substance addict
Death in nature is a state of harmony and assimilation, it has it’s keepers and it’s makers, but it’s evil is in the eyes of the mortals only. The sheep must be herded to it’s embrace as the transformation cycle is the perpetuum of the universe.
An old forgotten fairy tale of nightmares tells that in the cosmic court of the mad king there was a jester who’s powers and madness rivaled his master’s. But one day in one of his morbid jokes he managed to disturb even the king’s mind, and he ordered him exiled to another dimension with no way back. Woe be unto the world he now entertains!
The Shellwalker had had many names among the human tribes across the millennia, not in his true form, but in the form of the humanoid skin-body it was by now accustomed to wearing among them. Only once in a century or two did a situation call for his celestial form to be revealed or it’s powers to be needed, so he had just gotten used to living as a human… as many humans. A boring yet, to his surprise, a very satisfying life. He hoped the cataclysmic mission he was sent on would never be activated, and that the great powers across the galactic dimensions would never trigger him for the purpose he was actually sent here so, so, soo long ago.
A lemplaj infestation advances slowly, very very slowly. It takes many weeks, months, sometimes even years until the disturbing biomass conquers a usable habitat. This however doesn’t make it less terrifying, as the realization of the inhabitants has time to settle in and all attempts of stopping it fail, be it in slow motion but still irreversible ways. Feeding on all kinds of biological mass, not just plant and animal life but many a brave knight has unwilling fed it to a new explosion. The same driver growing it also kills it off though, as it runs out of nutrient it eventually dies out leaving behind only little red spore formations. Cursed is the fool who would want to collect such spores.
Richard and Leon were ramming the captain’s cabin door as hard as they could. Slamming, screaming, kicking with a desperate frenzy. Their shoulders were screaming in painful agony, but they didn’t give in until they broke the door. Somebody had to do this, and if not them… WHO? The crew was in total disarray, not far from mutiny. Ever since that rich booty they had struck on hitting the sinking regal galleon everything had gone downhill. Sure, there were gems, gold coins and exotic jewellery with beautiful engravings in a language never seen before, and everything in plenty for everybody, but what would it all be worth if they all died with a mad captain? Sure enough, as they feared, they found him still staring into that strange crystaline ball showing funny things. It had been 4 days, for God’s sake! It looked like he hadn’t ate or drank anything in all this time, just sat there… just sat there… just…
My commentary seemed to have touched a very sensitive note in the Xiliian culture, as the inter-dimensional trader exploded at that point into not just vocal but particularly disgusting expression of his (and his soul-family’s) views on the subject. I couldn’t understand most of it, not just due to my mind-language limited knowledge but also because I became obsessively captivated by the strange and (even here) abnormal way in which his mouth and tongue opened before my eyes as he got more excited, triggering in me something very instinctive and irrational that froze all my otherwise calm and calculated psychic faculties into a savage animalic mode. Based on this experience I always advise all alter-students to stay away from the subject matter when doing commerce beyond our realms! From “Alter-Universium Soul Trader’s Guide”
The giant of the underworld crawls in slow motion through the burning sands of the infernal depths, for though he was once a frightening lord of great powers, he is now but a shell of his former might, a host and carrier of the burden that hatches upon his back, burrowing into it and reshaping it to it’s needs as it grows and multiplies.
The Cloid crawls through the crevices in the cliffs of the underworld, never getting out into open spaces, and avoiding the scarring green flames. Why would it go out, when aeons ago it discovered that these stones are so charged with the spiritual energy of the journeymen that sometimes they break through the dimensions and into the mortal realms? There nourishment exists in abundance!
The demonoid had been ordering humans around for millennia, so when it realized this stupid man was actually seriously trying to actually order him to do something, the expression forming on it’s face was a mixture of disgust, surprise, disdain and infernal anger.
The Bnii Fyid skull had been passed on from great ruler to great ruler for millennia now, ever since ancient times since when it is rumored to have fallen burning out of the skies and the someone discovered it’s amazing one-to-many subconscious communication abilities. Many great wars of empires had, in fact, been fought solely for this ancient artifact, as regardless weather they were called cesars, pharaohs, sultans, kaisers, kings or presidents they all realized the great usefulness of playing with the fears of the masses, the value of instilling popular fears of other people/cultures/languages/civilizations, and how this allowed their own power to be increased on waves of fear. It is not a precise tool, it is is rather speculated it functions for the emotions of the masses like a prism for light: it breaks balanced ones into spectrums of intense separate sentiments which once separated can be distinctly channeled like rivers.
This ancient political knowledge that the fear of an (even imaginary) common enemy is possibly the greatest way to unite a people under a “great leader” may be commonly known, but the great use and even existence of the Bnii Fyid for this purpose is a secret sealed with ocean scale pools of blood, and not just that spilled by the many spies of different nations trying to find it again, and then their own as soon as they do. Those who know it, know why.
The “Bones of Saraoth” ritual seemed to Jarredth to be a smart way to work his way up to communicating with the high Lord of the Abyss himself. But, even as he tried that, the apparition that started to gently materialize in the mist clouds now gathering around him made his heart stand still forever.
And then in the twirls of thickening darkness I started seeing a shape, no more of them, feeding upon the soul-remains of the depths. I remembered then of my master’s teachings and realized I was seeing the bottom feeder beings known as Deepscourers. Remembering that was fortunate, as otherwise I might’ve let myself be deceived by it’s benign looking, almost peaceful outlook and gotten closer, risking being mistaken for a damned soul and being mercilessly fed upon.
“The nightmare traveler journals” by Ruberti Markun
Among the forbidden works of the insane painter Lucilian Bradley was found this strange painting of the Lord of the Abyss, Saraoth. His friends and family speculate this might be one of the reasons why he went mad and burned the house as this one was found in the only a decade later in the reconstruction discovered secret laboratory where he apparently also practiced occult rituals, a subject and passion he’d been fascinated with ever since he read that dreaded book that his wife still curses long after his death. Was this the demon that eventually got him for playing with his minions way more than a mortal should ever even dream?
The few ever seen by mortals, were described like a mass of bones fused as if in great heat and polished eternally by wriggling black threads that lurk under the skin. It is speculated that they improbably rise in the rare event that an asteroid from the heavens hits a mass/pile of bone (or creates one?), and are somehow the result of an alien consciousness either taking possession of them or bringing them to life with a fused will.
The long dark night of the freezing season had ruled these lands for 6 fatal months, but now the first blessed rays were starting to push it back. Most creatures of the long night were quickly burrowing under the ice and into chilling caverns with their victims, but not so the Carnispecter. It remains active through the weak light times, still preferring the long shadows, but scouting and coordinating the movements of the others deep beneath from wherever is was needed, as it has for hundreds of cycles and as it will for many more.
The diminutive race of Ankh’arr’nilf’schioo has long been enslaved by the fire demons of the south. So long in fact that most peoples have forgotten the original name of their kind and now know them only by how they’re called by their masters: “Boneslave”. They have however tried to keep parts of their own culture from “the before”, and at nights they sometimes can be seen crawling out of the volcanic cracks of the mountain to do their strangely frightening bone dance music in worship of the true-God.
As the two grey haired men with incredibly expensive suits sat in the antechamber awaiting to see The Great Politician, they were getting more and more nervous. The older one was periodically wiping his sweat filled forehead with a golden embroidered handkerchief. They were THE two leaders of business and banking in their country, yet they both knew that the real power belonged to this diminutive man, the man who controlled men with guns who could destroy their empires in gunfire, and controlled the press in to every whim under state imperative. In a mixture of fear and boredom they would both repeatedly be looking at the big portrait painting that was dominating the great room. And as they did so, and as the minutes of waiting turned into hours, they started to get the feeling that the setting sun moving across it was revealing an underpainting, something much older and more frightening. Or maybe they were just going crazy.
The Dimension-0 ring hides under it’s beauty and shine a very dark secret indeed. For the gems it is a adorned with are no ordinary precious stones, but pieces from the volcanic explosions on mount Krara-rathou, the place where hundreds of slaves over centuries had been brought as living offerings, not to the volcano or nature (as some westerners still think with superiority), but to dark powers living deep in under the earth’s crust. It is said that the wearer is able to see with it The Overlapping Dimension. This perspective of his surroundings makes the wearer feel “enlightened”, first through the discovery, and then through the other-beings that talk to him in hi trances. Ultimately though all the wearers (mostly great kings) ended in insanity, no longer being able to interact with their own kind.
excerpt from the book
“Forbidden Lost Artifacts” – by Lugunarius Markhee
The Forgotten Catacombs had been built in the early years of the roman empire, then, as now, serving as a prison and experimentation facility for the handful of shadow beings from Beyond that were captured by mankind. The roman emperors who experienced the great millennial planetary alignment and the resultant horrors that seeped into our dimension were painfully a serious threat to their rule. That’s when the unholy alliance with the Anatherit warriors was done. It wasn’t an easy decision as these creatures where despicable abominations that put fear into the hearts of even the most veteran soldiers, but what won’t a ruler do to maintain his power? In fact this alliance worked surprisingly well for many many centuries. Indeed it worked so well that in just a few decades most of the mortals came to never have to encounter beyonders themselves, and over the centuries popular culture forgot of their existence. However, as humanity grew and prospered forgetting this ancient pact, the Anatherit became discontent and began to neglect their ancient horrible duties, leaving more and more inhumans to roam the mortal realms.
AnNichi Rebamael – Historian of the Forgotten