New Civilizations [IC | Closed]

For all of your non-NationStates related roleplaying needs!
User avatar
G-Tech Corporation
Khan of Spam
Posts: 63397
Founded: Feb 03, 2010
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

New Civilizations [IC | Closed]

Postby G-Tech Corporation » Fri Apr 29, 2022 7:51 am

New Civilizations


Suns rise, suns set. The world turns, and the seasons change. But this is not the world you know. This is a world far younger, more full of potential - the world of New Civilizations.

The date is two thousand nine hundred and sixty five years Before the Common Era - 2965 BC. Mankind is a savage thing, little given to civilization, only taking her first steps toward ideas of government, religion, culture, and many other things beside. And you, by the quirks of fate, by a straying thread in the tapestry of the ages, find yourself thrown backward to this strange and barbaric time.

It will be desperate. It will be brutal. Life is cheap, and the luxuries and even common humanity which you are accustomed to are nowhere to be found. But to be a man in such times, to be a woman, is to stand at the dawn of human civilization. Your actions, your choices, your will - these will echo down through the centuries. You stand as a stone in the river, about which the currents of history now eddy and swirl.

What future will you forge? What story will you write, Author? Speak now the tale of the New Civilizations.

The True God

November 8th, 2965 BCE

Stones and the odd arrow clattered off of the shields of the foremost guardsmen, making a dreadful racket. Here and there a man fell with a cry of pain, unlucky and injured. Some made no noise at all as they toppled, boneless, consciousness fleeing from the impact of a sling against their skull. My heart was sick of it, my face as grim as the winter ice which marked the mountains not far south and west. Even a sturdy padded helmet could only do so much if the hit was direct and the impact square. The human brain was not meant to take such a pounding, and those with such injuries would fare grievously.

The wild lands southwest of Mordhau had been little cared for by the people of the Imperium. They made good trading partners, aye, and the odd bit of heartwood of impressive caliber did filter down out of those hills. But by and large they were so unpopulated and forbidding that they had been passed by, ignored. Latter men would tame them, latter soldiers give a care to their barbarous tribes, latter engineers survey the deep forests and craggy hills.

Such we had thought. Such I had thought. Until the arrival of the Camdenites.

They had come with fire, and spear, soaked in an ocean of spilled blood. This slaughter they wrought in the name of their benefactor, their messiah, the One Who Was Promised. Those who were willing to convert and bow the knee were spared, but placed under harsh tax. Those who were not - well, there were few refugees who escaped the oncoming armed bands from the south. Not because men did not attempt to flee. Not for that reason.

And so the Seventh had marched, at my behest. The Rose Council had approved the campaign, leery of the danger which these fanatics posed to the ambitions of the Imperium in the southern Svaar. They would be weak during the winter, ill provisioned, having to draw their reinforcements across the broken stretches of the foothills of the Alps and the fens of the Ovensee. Rare was the military force who could campaign in such season on account of the lack of forage and the paucity of supplies to commandeer from the locals.

Truth be told, even the Great Company was finding it difficult to maintain the usual sufficiency of provender which one would expect in the field.

But in a battle of blind men, the fighter with one eye will triumph. And pinning down the brigands was more important, in many ways, than having a good ability to maneuver. In these highlands if the zealots chose to melt away they could harass any logistical train with nigh impunity. Far better to bring them to battle where that was not an option to be taken, than allow them the possibility of such a vexatious volition.

From atop their barricade, a low wall of stones piled haphazardly to about chest height, the Camdenites called down the curses of their god on the approaching soldiery. I stood rather to the rear, though advancing with the captain and his retinue; even that had scandalized my minders, but ultimately they served my will, whatever their intentions. Markus had had to be talked down from sending three dozen Blackguards to ensure my safe return, which would have rather defeated the purpose of seeing how the formations of the Seventh handled open warfare. Only six men stood to my fore, their sweaty faces well concealed by heavy tower shields which only occasionally rang with an impact. The lion's share of the enemy's attention was upon the block of guardsmen steadily approaching their redoubt.

Normally tactical doctrine would call for such a position to be reduced by bombardment before an assault. No artillery had managed to be limbered over the Ammersee and her tributaries yet, unfortunately, and so the destruction of this forward position would have to be accomplished the old-fashioned way; an unbreakable shield wall, and the butcher's work.

The captain drummed his spear on his shield in a rapid tattoo as the company approached the wall. With a practiced motion the first line of warriors dropped to one knee, and from behind them men tossed thin javelins, wicked and barbed. Such weapons missed, by and large, even when thrown by experienced fighters, but they certainly made the enemy keep their heads down - and those half dozen of the foe who were unlucky enough to be pierced by them were out of the fight to be sure. A spear of that nature punched through the light linen armor the brigands wore without any compunctions, and created such a jagged wound most of those so injured would die even with immediate treatment. A cruel weapon, but effective.

Again the tattoo sounded, before the enemy could truly resume their bombardment. The next line of warriors, those who had thrown their javelins, advanced past the first, before kneeling in their turn. Men dashed forward a few paces to their rear, and a new volley of barbed implements laid low three or four of the remaining defenders. The throwing of stones and odd archer who pulled together enough courage to sight over the wall was now very slow in returning, fearing another shower of death - exactly the intended result.

I say exactly the intended result, for even as the second volley struck home the guards advanced at a trot, shields high. This was the sprint to the finish, after the slow advance which conserved strength and allowed the enemy to waste what ammunition they possessed. The distance to the barricade was now less than a dozen meters, and this was a critical time - which I knew, and the knowledge of which this captain too possessed, it seemed. It was one thing to shoot an arrow at a shielded man at a hundred yards. Your odds of scoring a kill at such range were paltry. But if accurate weapons were used here, now, in this moment, even the armor of the guards probably wouldn't deflect a lucky shot. Most casualties in an assault were taken in closing the final stretch.

And so now the assault had to begin in earnest.

Clambering over the wall would take time, and leave the soldiers vulnerable to the zealots and whatever weapons their leader had scavenged for them. I jogged along at the rear of the formation, closing the gap, and wondered if the captain of the Fourth Company knew the appropriate response to the dilemma. To the right and left of the enemy position the ground dropped away into steep embankments. There was no room for outflanking. But there was a solution, of a kind - a solution which the captain luckily knew.

A complex drumming, a shouted order lost in the din to my ears, but not, it seemed, to his men. Up their shields went, and down the men of the second and third rank knelt. Hide-faced shields didn't have the best traction, but they didn't need to. Bosses at the center of each rectangular tower allowed the hobnailed boots of the soldiers purchase as a section of the guardsmen rushed up an impromptu ramp of interlocked shields their fellows supported from below.

Shouts of dismay came from beyond the barricade, soldiers disappearing over the wall. Short hacking spears and smallswords of forged steel would make short work of whatever martial training the southerners possessed. Nasty work, brutish and up close, but decisive. It wasn't more than a minute or two before the sounds of battle died down from the Camdenite redoubt. Several of the guardsmen dismantled a section of the wall, and the captain motioned me over.

He had removed his helmet, and he looked so young. It was striking, even though I intellectually understood I no doubt was not far advanced of his years.

"We have their leader, Hegemon. A man named Barabus." The captain saluted, twisting his hand over his heart in the gesture of fealty I had taught Garasov those many years ago.

They had him indeed. He was a wild-haired individual, short but brawny, his black hair in thick curls about his face. Normal enough, really, for this part of the world. Except for the eyes. His eyes were filled with a madness, a hatred that I had only rarely seen. It took three men to hold him down, kneeling on the scrub-grass, despite blood streaming from a head wound and many abrasions.

He snarled and spat, speaking in a patois from out of the west. His words came harsh, between gasps filling his lungs with air, the exertion of combat.

"I know how this ends, Imperial."

I squatted down in front of him, looking him in the face. His tongue flowed from my lips by the gift of my Father, and his eyes widened as I spoke.

"Then tell Camden you are coming, courtesy of the Seventh."

A savage smile touched his mien, a grimace of bloody teeth.

"It must pain you, knowing the one true god chooses us over you."

I shrugged broadly.

"Not today he didn't."

The statement infuriated the leader. Spittle flecked from Barabus' tongue as he shouted, straining against the men that held him back.

"When the Prophet comes, the Imperium will be nothing!"

I stood, shifting my grip on the sword in my hand.

"Until then."

The thrust went in downwards, pommel pointed up to the sky. There was a slight sighing noise from the zealot as the blade whispered between his neck and his collarbone, right down into the heart. A momentary spurt of arterial blood splashed the underside of my grip, and then I pulled the sword clear. His eyes, his lips still pulled back in a rictus of hate - the peace of oblivion washed over them breath by breath, until his chest ceased to stir.

Just the first madmen we would have to deal with. Just another set of misguided fools on this barbaric globe.
Last edited by G-Tech Corporation on Fri Apr 29, 2022 7:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
Quite the unofficial fellow. Former P2TM Mentor specializing in faction and nation RPs, as well as RPGs. Always happy to help.

User avatar
Islamic Holy Sites
Posts: 8288
Founded: Mar 20, 2021
Authoritarian Democracy

Postby Islamic Holy Sites » Fri Apr 29, 2022 8:20 am

Ali was quite pale when he staggered up to the centre of the village to speak. His khopesh was still in his hand, with blood still on the blade. But colour flushed into his face as he glared at the inhabitants of his beloved home.

“I am now the leader of this village. Any objections?”

“Oh, yes, we have objections,” snarled a refugee. “Why should we follow you when you killed my brother? Why should we follow a child who can barely pick up his sword and has to resort to stabbing people in the back to win?”

Ali’s face turned a bright red as several other refugees chortled.
Utu, the ten-year old orphan who was Ali’s best friend, shouted.

“He was the one who let you live here! You should be grateful!”

People’s head swivelled to look at this small boy shouting at them about gratefulness.

“You have to rely on this boy to speak for you?” sneered the man who spoke in the first place. “Why don’t you fight me, child, and we’ll decide who will be the leader of this village.”

Fury boiled in Ali’s body. Recklessly, he accepted the challenge, and before he knew it he was a five minute’s walk away from the river with his sword in his hand, glaring daggers at the tall man in front of him.

The man brandished his spear.

“Let us begin.”

Ali immediately swung his sword at the spear. The man, not expecting such a rapid reaction, jerked the spear out of harm’s way. Ali missed and stumbled, which his opponent immediately took advantage of. The spear was jabbed at Ali’s chest, but he managed to deflect it with a desperate swing of his sword, and it embedded itself in his shoulder.

Pain erupted from his shoulder and Ali instinctively dropped his sword and clutched his shoulder to ease the pain. The opponent thrust again with the spear still in Ali’s shoulder, a move which knocked Ali to the ground and ripped the spear from his shoulder. The spear rolled away. The man turned and with a few strides caught up to his weapon and picked it up. When he turned back, however, Ali had gritted his teeth, stood up, picked up his khopesh and charged. The man thrust with his spear and Ali slashed wildly, unable to dodge. By sheer luck, he sliced off the top of the spear, and continued running. He heaved the sword up and struck the man’s spear-hand. The man bellowed and dropped his stick, and Ali quickly jerked the sword out of the man’s arm and backed away. His opponent picked up a rock and hurled it at Ali, missed and whilst he was trying to pick up his stick Ali struck at his exposed neck. Without the strength of an adult, he did not kill his opponent but that was the last straw for the man. He swung his fist at Ali’s face and made contact with his nose. Pain bursted through the boy’s face, but he stayed firm and swung at the man’s throat. Blood gushed out of him. He fell down, dead.
Call me Muqaddasia.
Proud member of the GCN. Host nation of SETZA. Founder/Co-founder of the (now defunct) IDSF Founder/Co-founder and first in command of the (now defunct) UCA. Founder of the (now defunct) ICRD.
BREAKING NEWS: Galapagos war 4 might be coming | “Aursi among best Muqaddasi allies,”, says government official | Muqaddasi weapon industry expanding WIP

User avatar
Posts: 6689
Founded: May 02, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Orostan » Fri Apr 29, 2022 11:49 am

Aaron Dawson’s Story

Year 16 Month 9 Chinese Imperial Calendar - 2964 BC


Aaron set down the cup of tea on the table. The producers of the drink had been getting better at it much to Aaron's satisfaction. And Tan's, judging by how he took from his own cup. Aaron's eight year old daughter Lei was playing on the floor some distance away from the two men with a toy steam locomotive and cars. She was a great appreciator of the simple toy that Aaron had made for her, and even though it was not of very high quality Aaron took pride in making something that could make his only remaining child happy. Lei spent most of her day being educated by her mother Shun, her father Aaron, or a teacher who taught physical and mental fitness. Aaron sometimes wondered for a moment if he was pushing her too hard to get a good start on education, but every time he did memories of his son murdered during a bandit raid on Luoyang would spring into his mind and he'd be even more dedicated to make his remaining offspring the strongest they could be. Tan's children were older, and late into the day Aaron would frequently ask Tan over for advice. Tan would provide him the advice and also talk about the methods of parenting that were done in the other parts of the empire he semi-frequently visited on this or that project to increase administrative standards. Aaron eagerly listened but the customs Tan usually described were strange to his 21st century mind.

Aaron had also begun to try and test the durability of his political system. Where once he made new laws and administrative changes daily he had frequently been delegating various work he took on himself before to various other offices, including Tan's. So far this had the desired effect of reducing the empire's dependence on Aaron, occasionally he would even ask some advisor for a recommendation on some policy and follow through with it even if Aaron believed the policy was sub-optimal. The important part was not the actual policy created but the impression that advice given to the highest levels of government would be taken seriously. For every five policies which resulted in little or no improvement to the administration or economy suggested by some overconfident bureaucrat there would be one excellent suggestion that Aaron would never have been able to come up with himself.

This was contrasted by the consequences of bad administration both to the empire and to the bureaucrats responsible. This was another common topic of discussion over the table while drinking tea with Tan and where once Aaron had not agreed to the death penalty for all but the most serious administrative mistakes he now supported Tan's idea of making "examples of idiots". Where corruption had once been discouraged with warnings before any punishment due to the shortage of administrators Tan argued the spread of literacy allowed for easier appointing of replacements. The impression of a secret bureaucratic police which could appear from nowhere and bring corrupt officials to trial and then execution in a matter of days also would create a climate of fear among the corrupt. Aaron's agreement with this policy had certainly done exactly that and administrators in the cities and provinces now kept obsessive records of tool and grain distribution as any lapse in record keeping could be seen as evidence of corruption or misdirection of resources towards certain clans.

It sometimes struck Aaron that many of the moral maxims he had tried to live his life by were being turned upside down. On some level he had believed before that absent all other things it was right and good to rule people the way he would want to be ruled, and issue orders and policies that he would like to follow if he wasn't the one making them. Certain exceptions had to me made of course, but as long as he had followed that rule he believed in general things would be alright. After the war though his view had changed, and Aaron's rules had become more coercive. Even if Aaron could get his policies approved by the assembly he did that with his own personal influence now more than a genuine democratic debate. Roughly half the assembly agreed with Aaron, but the other half which represented more clannish interests were in opposition but would never show it in the votes. Occasionally to maintain the idea of democracy Aaron would allow some motion to fail in the assembly. Normally he'd want the vote in the assembly to a confirmation of something already agreed on but "today the idea of democracy was more important than its actual reality" Aaron would say to Tan. Tan would agree with him, and also add that at least for now the idea of a central government which obeyed the wishes of the provinces through the assembly was more important than a central government that actually did listen to its provinces.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN
Ernest Hemingway wrote:Anyone who loves freedom owes such a debt to the Red Army that it can never be repaid.

Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:“To understand the man you have to know what was happening in the world when he was twenty.”

Cicero wrote:"In times of war, the laws fall silent"


User avatar
Posts: 3476
Founded: Apr 27, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Suriyanakhon » Tue May 03, 2022 10:10 pm

Kinoshita Grace


Nurhaci was a bear of a man, in both size and temperament. He had made a name for himself as a supporter of the great Sugedai, reiving across Northeast Asia, and amassing for himself an immense amount of gold, wives, and even more liquor. He was not a stingy man, neither was he an exceedingly generous one. He occasionally gave gifts, but for the most part, he jealously guarded his wealth, his women, and his alcohol. His neighbors learned it was best simply to not approach him, for those who minded their manners, he would mind his. But he always remained in the corners of their mind, in a space of unease.

Therefore, it was a surprise to many of the townspeople when the feared Nurhaci shaved his head and was ordained as a monk in the order founded by Daigen. Much of his wealth he gave away, what he didn't went to assuring that his household were able to comfortably maintain themselves until his firstborn son was able to come of age, and his old collection of alcohol was smashed against the walls in the name of his new religious rejection of alcohol.

“From henceforth, your name shall be Reisetsu.” Daigen recited after Nurhaci, now Reisetsu, received the ten precepts. Another novice monk, perhaps a former barber, proceeded to shave the hair off his head until the new initiate was bald. “You have renounced your wealth and status in the world. Now your family is of the Shaka's. Have faith in the Buddha and practice diligently for the salvation of all sentient beings.”

Nurhaci rose after the ceremony finished and spoke with Daigen for some time before another novice entered. “The venerable converter of Maharaja Sirpa, Jaku, is coming to greet you, venerable Daigen.” he stated, bowing like he would to a chieftain or to a spirit. In some ways, these new novices saw their elder monks in similar terms, as high and mighty beings, like mountains or clouds, that one might approach and venerate. Daigen thanked the novice and dismissed him, and the youth returned to his previous duties.

In little under an hour, Jaku entered the small temple. “How are you, brother?” he asked.

“I am the same as I always am.” Daigen replied, a faint smile breaking from his neutral expression at seeing his younger brother, who did not, however, return the emotional display. “Come now, I understand that you believe in dispassion, but it is a means to an end, not the end itself. The Lord wouldn't begrudge you some warmth to your brother.”

“Forgive me, it's not out of cold heartedness I'm so reluctant. Love of family is my greatest attachment, surely you remember that.” Jaku replied. “I have journeyed far and lost my attachments to many things, but family remains a thorn in my heart and it wounds my self-respect not to have rooted out all affection.”

“I have heard that you have converted the great raja Sirpa, in a short span you accomplished more than I expected. Truly such a feat is a service to the Dharma.” Daigen said impressed, with no insincerity.

“That I have, he has been an ardent pupil and a dear friend. A man like that is hard to find in the Three Worlds.” Jaku answered, smiling when remembering a Dharma lecture he had given Sirpa before he had left about the nature of karma and rebirth. The metaphysical was where Jaku truly excelled, his brain loved the deep theories of birth and death, and he always found ways to explain them that conveyed their vastness but also divine simplicity. “It was not an easy feat and I paid a heavy toll, but it was much worth it.” he held up his flayed hand to Daigen. “A hand for a good friend and salvation of sentient beings, I would have surrendered more.”

“You will have to tell me more about your travels later, brother.” Daigen said, gesturing for his brother to follow him. “I must give a lesson soon to the neophytes, please follow me and help me along in that way you do so well.” Jaku acquiesced and followed his brother into the adjacent hall, where the two brothers, ex-princes, gave a lecture to the impressionable youth about the nature of samsara and the nature of Buddhahood.
Private residence

The Hayashi were a family of complicated origins. Tracing their family lead one back to a wealthy great-grandfather who made his fortune organizing the sale of food to the imperial court, they were not aristocrats, but were burghers who occasionally made decent trade, but never really left their home provinces for the outside world. They had never thought about taking to the sea and seeing the Great Yellow River Country, or the Shen State, or the southern islands. Instead, they focused on trade in Honshu, with the occasional deal with travelers between there and the smaller islands of the archipelago.

The great-granddaughter of this founder, however, Hayako, would perhaps prove more influential than anyone in the family had imagined. A short woman who stood at 4'8", she did not strike an impressive figure, and did not inspire followers because of her strength or presence. Her words were what inspired them and her ideas about how things ought to be that were strangely beguiling. She could evoke high dreams of the future, a Hanajima that was not dependent on the monasteries or the governor system, but was a strong and secular cultural state centered around the Empress.

“Religion is inferior to culture,” she was fond of telling her literary associates who came to her residence the last of every week to have a poetry competition and discussion about world events. “We have grown up so long believing that our country is superior because of its religious dogma, because it is the center of the earth, or something else. No, our country is not dependent on such things. It is superior because of its customs which evoke awe and reverence. It is the wellspring of culture in the world, and it spreads these to foreign lands through commerce and diplomacy. We do not require divine favor. All we need is to raise up the youth, like we are doing now. This shogun accomplished much, in small increments, but what we need is a strong Empress who will bring about the changes that the state really needs to survive.”

She was always keen to emphasize the point of a strong Empress, not a strong leader. Hayashi revered the throne, and saw it as the wellspring of the national spirit, even if she did not believe the divine origin myths written down and transmitted. For a demagogue to come along and take power and make the changes she wanted was not something that she wanted to imagine, least of all encourage, happening.

Her associates understood her ideas well, and had guessed, although not been told, that she was the author of many of the infamous tracts spread along the Kansai region that were banned for spreading disbelief and radical reformism.

“There are some who believe that the Chinese are growing too powerful in our country,” one of the attendees remarked after a bout of poetry recital. “That the immigrants have occupied too many roles in the lower civil service, making it harder for native clergy and noblemen to apply. That they receive preferential treatment too, being employed more by the court than other smiths and weapon masters. Then there's the merchants who come along, I've heard rumors that they settle sometimes and marry Hanajima women for the purpose of converting them to their strange religion. Although I've heard other rumors that if they do, it does not turn out too well for them in the end. They aren't familiar with the power of women in our country.” she looked over at Hayashi. “What about you, Teacher? Are you a xenophobe?”

“In olden days, although no one likes to say so nowadays, our country was a mix of different people.” she answered. “The barbarians who worshiped animals, and in some parts of the country, still do. The civilized people who came from the east and conquered the land of the reed plain under the first Tenno. The first Tenno was also a foreigner, although it is not popular to say so today. She was a conqueror who bent the bow and slew the rival chieftains, and installed herself as the object of worship.” the audience breathed in somewhat to hear this. Although they were not surprised by her opinion, it was still taboo to say aloud, a violation of the law which carried a stiff penalty. “Those who come to the country and adopt the civilized customs ought to be allowed to stay or go at their pleasure, provided they do no harm to the nation. If the barbarian king of the Shen were to adopt our customs and come to me for protection, I would provide it.” the audience laughed at the idea of the barbarian king, who they imagined as a tall brutish figure, little distinguished from a beast, wearing the delicate clothes and style of the court.
Imperial palace

To be the fourth Tenno was a lonely affair, little did she get to see the outside world except for her gardens, and it showed on her pale melancholic face. The court was empty except for the ruler, who had arranged for a troupe of actors to entertain her for the day, but was yet for them to arrive. She took her fan out and sighed, writing down a note to remind herself of some meaningless thought on the back. Despite being the supreme ruler of the land and owner of every being under the sun of her islands, impatience was not an emotion she was trained to express. As she waited, she entertained herself by drawing on the rest of the back of the fan.

Finally, the guards announced the arrival of her guests and the Tenno, somewhat embarrassed, hid her brush in the sleeve of her robe. The acting troupe approached and prostrated before the throne and offered a thousand pardons for their tardiness, fear arising that she would punish them extremely. The Tenno accepted their apologies and clapped her hands for them to start. Extremely grateful and eager to proceed lest her graciousness dry up, the troupe obeyed.

The dance opened with a recital of the background, about a tormented ghost of a sinner who had carried on numerous sins in life and was being tormented by devils. The actor who portrayed the ghost wore all white, as well as white makeup and bleached hair, which added to the uncanny nature of the performance. The Empress was enthralled, watching with intense interest that encouraged the troupe. The ghost launched into a soliloquy about the nature of impermanent things, but Her Majesty's thoughts were not merely on the performance.

After the performance had finished, all of the troupe, except for the head, an old man, left. He bowed and spoke to the Tenno. “Your Majesty, I hope that you enjoyed our play.”

“I did, I did.” she responded enthusiastically.

“We are wanderers, we receive the occasional patron, but our goal has been to reach the imperial court and ask for your support for our establishment of an acting school for our lineage.” the head explained more and more to the Empress, who listened, although her thoughts were elsewhere.

“You shall have my support.” the Tenno replied. “Although I am curious about something else.”

“Of course, Your Majesty.” the playwright bowed.

“I was curious about that girl, the Ghost of the play.” the Tenno said, recalling the woman's features.

“Oh! That is my daughter, Yuu.” the playwrighter exclaimed cheerfully. “She is a fine actor, is she not?”

“I should like if she might visit me sometimes, and tell me more about the craft. I have always been interested in the specifics of theater.” the Tenno replied. not entirely untruthfully.

The playwright seemed surprised and bowed again. “Yes of course, Your Majesty. We would be honored for our daughter to be an attendant of the imperial court. Such an honor... we never expected.” the old man seemed like he was about to choke up.

The Tenno gave him her blessing and sent him on his way.
Kampung Rayang

As someone who once conducted rituals to venerate the sun, the irony of me quickly entering my hut after a long day to escape the hot oppressive ball of fire above was not lost on me. The day had been so tiresome, part of a week campaign against a tribe which had attacked us, bolstered with the belief that the talismans that the Chinese merchants had given them would provide them with some protection against the elements and weapons of the enemy tribesmen. Spoiler: they didn't.

Besides my role as a translator for Bambang, he had also started to entrust me with the task of leading sections of his army. It had been a long time since I had lead troops, but the draft and time as a merchant's crewmember had given me the physical experience to keep up and manage in the face of the weather. At least in public. In private, I was still as whiny and pathetic as I was before I even entered this world.

I collapsed into the bed on the floor and tried to fall asleep, but couldn't. Every time I tried, I just remembered the blood and death.

As I lay and twiddled my fingers, Zhou came through the door, In some ways, she had assimilated just as well as me, if not better. Although given her fondness for men, I wouldn't be surprised if a bunch of cuckqueaned wives didn't burn our house to the ground some day. Well, so long as I wasn't inside when it happened, wasn't my problem.

“How was your day?” Zhou asked, sitting down aside me. I rolled onto my side and she wrapped her arms around me in a hug. It was a weird ritual that we had. Everything felt so strange and foreign here, it was nice to have someone else who came from the same cultural world as I did.

“I hate this climate,” I replied, enjoying the refreshing honesty I could express around Zhou. I told her about my entire day, leaving none of the details back, even those that it probably would have been wiser to keep secret. Zhou listened with her typical nonjudgmental attitude that I had come to appreciate and we spoke for hours until it started to become nighttime.

“You're adjusting better than what you would have expected though, right?” she asked, and I nodded my head. That much was true at least. “It's not uncommon for people to have some amount of shock when entering a climate totally different from the one they're used to. Especially since you've never seemed to have left Honshu before you joined the crew.” I felt a little better than what I had before, which I was grateful for. “How... do you speak so many languages?”

“I just have a gift,” I replied to her, technically not being dishonest. It was a gift, and a curse. “A rare gift, one it's best that the fewest people know about. Lest it invite another one's eyes who shares the same nature as me.”

Zhou seemed confused, but respected my privacy and avoided saying anything else.

The next morning, we were greeted by knocking at the door. I groaned and rose from my bed and opened the door. In front of me stood Arief, a small and timid village boy who was used as the town messenger. “What is it?” I asked with some irritation that made him wince. I felt a little bad for that, kid was just doing his job.

“The Chief wants to see you.” Arief replied, and I nodded.

As I walked to the village center, I noticed that a lot of the villagers were staring at me. The months that I had stayed here had been few, but my reputation had grown massively as a sorcerer and a warrior. I couldn't tell whether it was respect, or fear, or a combination of both. I hadn't been feared for a long time, I didn't want to be again, although I assumed it was inevitable.

Bambang grabbed me into a bear hug which no breathe of air could've prepared me for. The chief's hugs were a force of nature, like a farmer in a hurricane it was best to just roll with them and let them take their course. He gestured for a young woman to sprinkle water on my forehead. I simply stood, confused, unsure of what was going to happen. “My friend, you have rendered me many services, for the good of my person, my household, and my village. I have promised for a long time to reward you, and today is that day. I am granting you land to the north to make yours and five dozen slaves to work the fields.”

It was no exaggeration to say I was more confused now than I was before, stammering a thank you, but in reality having no idea how to really respond. “There is no need to express gratitude, this is merely the result of all of your good service, nothing to do with grace. Settle the land well, respect its spirits, and grow your wealth for the good of Kampung Rayang.”

No, not again.
Resident Drowned Victorian Waif (he/him)
Phra Buddhadasa wrote:Those who have penetrated to the highest understanding of Dhamma will feel that the thing called "religion" doesn't exist after all. There is no Buddhism; there is no Christianity; there is no Islam. How can they be the same or in conflict when they don't even exist? Thus, the phrase "No religion!" is actually Dhamma language of the highest level.

User avatar
Posts: 3667
Founded: Aug 19, 2018

Postby Endem » Thu May 05, 2022 2:35 pm

Nafsi al-Hasa

He had begun to descend a flight of stairs from the former palace of the former prince which he took as residence. And he was greeted by the cheering crowd, all in unison, all together, in a singing voice gave him yet a new nickname. Voice of the Unseen. A nice sounding way of saying prophet.

He had sadly noted, that these people still didn't understand. They did not understand the freedom which he gave them, the freedom which they now had. They didn't either understand he wasn't their king. These people didn't know any of that. They thought of him as their new king, a God-King anointed by the divines, and just as he had cast their shackles off, they so readily put them back on, and tried to give him the chain to which they clung.

Every step down the white stairs felt heavy, as did every wave of cheering. Truly this scenery was food for narcissistic thoughts. In his mind images of just how easily he could clasp his fingers and become yet another of history's tinpot dictators. They certainly wouldn't even notice, for they already treated him like so. With a word he could have his haggard rags exchanged for finest clothes, and on his temple would be placed a golden wreath, and prospective candidates for his hand would lineup to spew out proposals for creation of a new royal dynasty.

He almost wanted to spit these thoughts out, but he worried if he did, they'd land on fertile ground and fester. He felt that, despite wanting to make something new, he was only destined to repeat a mistake. He felt not one man who was walking down, but three, three distinctive failures, and the one in the middle the undecided fool between them.

He could certainly become a teacher. A benevolent dictator who'd enshrine the modernity from which he came, and who'd race for it at breakneck speed. To go back to comforts of the life which he escaped, that boring malaise. And he would crush the uniqueness of this world under homogenized modernity. To become an enlightened absolute monarch. Another Peter the Great or Louis XIV. L'etat c'est moi and aprés moi, le déluge. For he'd leave the world in the same place he departed it the first time.

Or then he could swing the other way, embrace the Caliph and the Khan. Rally the desert and really the tribes. And then would come a jihad in his name, he'd make everyone from Oman to Kazakhstan scream his name, scream of fire from the desert. As he would let run wild his followers, tell them what was right and what was wrong in corruption of his own words. And he'd have the waters of the gulf run red with the blood of the unbelievers as he sat on the throne made from their skulls, and watch as the heretic was burned on a stake. Caedite eos, Novit enim Dominus qui sunt eius. As he'd let history shape the world again the same way it had shaped it once.

Or perhaps instead of writing history again, he'd simply give up, become a hermit and be submerged by the ever shifting sands of time. And he'd let his people write the Bible in wait for their messiah who has left and who never will arrive. He'd see as what he had built would crumble, over and over , and over again, forever and ever in a cycle of death and rebuilding.

Just as he had reached the last step, he realised he had found himself lost in thought. It happened to him so much recently. He blinked thrice, his eyes filled with tears. But his vision cleared itself of the clouds of his own thoughts which surrounded him and made his judgement clouded. It was now not the time for philosophy, he had to receive important guests, and then begin preparations for departing himself.

Two riders on camels strode through the crowd, as they rode through the street leading to the palace. He recognized in them Azzam and Zakiya. They rode up to him before dismounting and dropping onto a knee. Azzam spoke in a tone indicating religious elation.

"What you have commanded, we did o Prophet. The djinn nestled in the stone has been vanquished."

He nodded sagely before signaling for them to raise up.

"What of the stone? And where is Mahir and the rest?"

Zakiya this time answered.

"The stone was taken by Yanba'awi heathens."

He thought for a second of possible consequence of that, but determined that the actual physical stone was less important, it was only a hunk of rock afterall. But he did make a mental note to inform Mufid to spread the news of this cleansing.

"And Mahir?"

Once again the speaker alternated.

"The influx of people ravaged the land both by sword and famine, not many tribes survived, neither went unschated, a new one formed around Mahir from those which did not die. It has claimed lordship over the Rub Al'Khali, and wishes to join the Freedmen, to become part of the al-Muharirin."

"We welcome our brothers naturally."

He hugged then both of weary travellers, like a father hugs his returning children. The realm once again expanded, and with it, a new flank for the brewing war with Magan has opened.
All my posts are done at 3 A.M., lucidity is not a thing at that hour.

User avatar
Posts: 6689
Founded: May 02, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Orostan » Fri May 06, 2022 2:22 pm

Last edited by Orostan on Tue May 17, 2022 11:55 am, edited 4 times in total.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN
Ernest Hemingway wrote:Anyone who loves freedom owes such a debt to the Red Army that it can never be repaid.

Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:“To understand the man you have to know what was happening in the world when he was twenty.”

Cicero wrote:"In times of war, the laws fall silent"


User avatar
Posts: 3476
Founded: Apr 27, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Suriyanakhon » Fri May 06, 2022 6:47 pm

Kinoshita Grace

Imperial Palace

There was an almost deafening silence filling the imperial court, the knowledge that any day now the retired Empress could breathe her last. Whatever ailment she had, the exorcisms of the priests and the herbalism of the Chinese could do nothing to save her. “It is the end of an era,” they told each other, for the ruler who had accomplished so much and created the modern empire was about to depart forever. For many, there was genuine mourning and fear. Who would lead the country through the turbulence of the new world, with fearsome barbarians such as the Shen and Yellow River Dwellers? It seemed that the country would not last long with the mere hands of the current generation. For others, the dread of her death was not primarily the filial piety that is romanticized between subject and lord, or even love of country, but the fear that the always vengeful retired Empress' grudges would come back as angry spirits to torment the palace.

“So this is how it will end.” Ruyanpe murmured to herself, laying in her bed with members of her family surrounding her. Her daughter was a sobbing mess, and for once, Ruyanpe didn't have the heart to chastise her daughter for weakness. She reached her hand out and wiped some of the tears from the Empress's eyes, something of a futile gesture given their downpour, but Ruyanpe wanted her daughter's last memories of her to be kind. A pang of regret entered her heart. “I have done so much, but I feel I have accomplished so little, and you all, you have to carry the burden of what I failed to do.”

“Don't say that, Your Majesty.” her cousin choked between tears.

“Bring me my old coat,” Ruyanpe commanded a servant, who bowed and hastened to obey her wishes. “May the kamuy forgive me for ever putting on another. I've destroyed the customs of my ancestors and made heaven angry with me, for this is my reward. To have lost my husband, my son, my firstborn daughter, and my cousin. All because of my own ambitions.” for the first time in decades, tears started to fall down Ruyanpe's face.

The gathering sat stunned, unsure of how to respond. Ruyanpe attempted, with some difficulty, to regain her composure. “If I could go back to before all of this, before I first became the Tenno, and could reverse all of it, how happy I would be! But we have adopted so many foreign customs, it is impossible for us to go back to the old ways. These ways are rotten and cheap, the make believe of a girl who has departed from us, and from me. I'm alone, I'm so very alone. You all are here to comfort your aged relative, and I appreciate it for all my harshness. But there's only one person I desire to see and,” she stopped and allowed a servant to fit her into the old worn out coat. “I cannot find her and tell her I - ” coughing overtook her, which she attempted to cover with her sleeve, but it overpowered her.

For the rest of the night, the Retired Empress was unable to take and drifted in-between consciousness and unconsciousness, until finally she breathed her last.

As I contemplated how I was going to deal with the new situation that I had been dropped into, something felt odd, not quite right if you will. I couldn't place what it was, perhaps one of those weird ominous feelings you have that don't really mean anything. It was no use thinking about so I put it out of mind and focused with renewed attention on how I was going to get out of this mess.

The slaves numbered little under a hundred, more than me and the guards put together. I was confused why they didn't rebel until I saw the tattooed markings over their faces and bodies. It distinguished them as slaves, nothing more and nothing less. Even if they ran away, all of the villages around would know them as nothing more than slaves, and either have nothing to do with them or force them into servitude. A cruel master was at least a certainty, you knew the hand you were dealt with. To throw it out and try for a new hand was even more frightening.

Bambang had had the slaves construct a new house for me on the land I had been granted, fairly large by tribal standards, as well as start plowing the fields to grow crops. Whenever I saw the slaves outside toiling, it reminded me of the last time I owned slaves, and I shut myself in to avoid acknowledging them. I had to go out sometimes, it was expected of me, and I wanted to make sure that the guards Bambang entrusted me with didn't mistreat them too hard. Zhou herself didn't seem too fond of it either, although she didn't share the same horror as I did. To her it was just a regular part of her world, albeit not a desirable one.

I wanted to free them, but to do so would be considered the height of ingratitude, and the last thing I needed was to enrage the one patron I had. Bambang expected me to give a surplus of the harvest that they gathered with him as tribute, if one day the slaves up and went, it would be a massive violation of my unspoken social contract with him. It would also run into the problem of what I mentioned earlier, there was nowhere these people could go. They would be shunned and rejected wherever they turned, or worse. It was best to keep them with me, to protect them if I could.

“What do you think I should do?” I asked Zhou when we went out for a walk one day. She shook her head. That was helpful.

I needed a way to be able to free them, but not invite Bambang's wrath. As I thought about it over the next week, an idea started to form in my head. Over the course of the month we first settled in, I talked to the slaves and made sure to get to know them before I did what I had planned. Finally I called them to gather outside of my house. They came, unsure of what to expect, and confused as to why I had not called the guards either. After they had prostrated to me like they did others considered their social superiors, I spoke.

“You all have done hard work,” I stated, thinking carefully about what I was going to say next. Fortunately I had the odd ability to speak in other tongues, so I could speak in their dialect, in a way more accessible for them to understand than if I had just spoken in Rayang's. “And I want to reward you with an offer. I shall free you,” there were loud stirs of confusion, all of them disbelieving. Zhou stared at me as though I had gone mad, and to tell the truth, perhaps I had. “In exchange for your service as farmers and builders. The food you grow will belong to you, the structures you build will be yours. Allodially. I give it to you now, and it shall never be subject to revoke. All that I expect is taxation, of course, the same as if you were anywhere else under a lord. Your tattoos mark you as slaves anywhere else, but I don't care what ink is on your skin. So know that you will be free for as long as you reside here.”

“Why would you do this?” one of the crowd asked with a mixture of awe and suspicion, an emotion that the crowd seemed to share.

“I find it abhorrent to enslave another human being, and would prefer it not exist as an institution.” I replied, unsure of whether I seemed someone with high ideals or a clown. Oh, who cared. “But I am a subject of Bambang Kepala and can only accomplish so much. Please be my subjects and not my slaves, I leave it up to you.”

I had expected the crowd to be talkative, but they had gone silent, except for one who seemed to be their appointed spokesperson. “I... we... happily accept.” he said, bowing before me and the rest followed. “Long live Hyou Kepala!” they shouted and raised their hands, to the surprise of the guards who came rushing until I informed them of what happened.

“How dare you!” one of the guards shouted. “It is property that the chieftain gave you. Do you mean to say his gift isn't enough?”

“When a gift is given, you can use it however you please.” Zhou replied angrily, walking in front of me as though to protect me. The rest of the audience also seemed on my side, making loud and threatening noises that put the guards on the alert.

“Our Lord will still receive what is due to him, of that I promise.” I said, hoping that that would be enough to satisfy them. “You can tell him that yourselves, for I have no more need of you. Go back to Rayang, thank you for your time.” the freedmen stood agape as did the guards. When the captain was about to say something else, I shouted. “This is my land, and I stand here as its lord and master of the animals, spirits, and people who reside here. Say what you want but don't anger a tiger in its own den.”

Fearful of me, or perhaps the army of freedmen beside me, the guards nodded their head and acquiesced. As they left, I spoke to the crowd. “I grant the houses that the guards used to live in as nurseries, hospitals, and storehouses for you to use.“ after I had finished, they stood there, unsure of what to do. “You don't need my command to go to your quarters now. Do what you like, its your liberty not mine.”

Cheers and celebration broke out which continued into the night, and my attempts to go to bed were stopped by the throngs of celebratory freedmen who hoisted me up on their shoulders and tossed me in the air. It was the first time I was genuinely popular and I was completely terrified.
Last edited by Suriyanakhon on Sun May 08, 2022 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Resident Drowned Victorian Waif (he/him)
Phra Buddhadasa wrote:Those who have penetrated to the highest understanding of Dhamma will feel that the thing called "religion" doesn't exist after all. There is no Buddhism; there is no Christianity; there is no Islam. How can they be the same or in conflict when they don't even exist? Thus, the phrase "No religion!" is actually Dhamma language of the highest level.

User avatar
Posts: 3476
Founded: Apr 27, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Suriyanakhon » Sun May 08, 2022 10:26 pm

Kinoshita Grace

Kampung Kembang

As one villager hung up the new flag of our settlement, a violet colored flag with a golden flower in the center, I watched from the bamboo window of my house, slightly elevated more than comfort for someone with a fear of heights. I sat in the one room I had with a small makeshift desk to rest the bamboo that I was writing on. I was starting to think, if I wanted to preserve my knowledge for this place, so that the future generation could learn and grow, I needed to invent a writing system.

But what would be the nature of this new writing script? I could use the Japanese script of kana, repurposed for the use of the sounds in this Rayangese language (as I had started to term it). But I grimaced at that, it seemed wholly unsuited, and unoriginal too. A plagiarism that would accomplish nothing but keep me bound to the same demented thought patterns that made me try to force my world onto this one.

Something original, perhaps? The thought sparked a memory from my past, in my old world, where I had been a simpler girl. I'd worked on conlangs, for fictional worlds I used to build for fun. Most of these had been drawn somewhat on old classical tongues, no one could be completely original. But I could try my best to break the mold and make something new.

An abugida seemed the most fitting for the language, I decided, writing out the characters for the new script. As I continued writing, I became more and more invested, almost stopping my breath from anticipation. I decided to use a system of organizing the script similar to gojūon in Japanese. So many plans popped up in my mind, for a monolingual and bilingual dictionary, grammar book, etc. I could create a language for a new village... no, a new city, that would be a beacon for the world.

Were the seeds of redemption that I had wanted for so long finally going to be planted in my mind? Could this be the way to make amends for my past and to start a new life, one where I wasn't Kinoshita Grace, but Hyou Rin, the ex-merchant army girl? If I managed to convince Bambang of the truth, that my ways were better, that slavery was not a necessity, that we could have a free and strong island where men and women were brothers and sisters, not masters and slaves, wouldn't that be an act of the utmost merit? If the two of us worked together, we could spread this philosophy across the whole island and make it one federation. My hand quivered as I was overtaken by the mental phantoms of new cities, books, people, all of the signs of civilization. Not modeled on an old dream, but on a new one.

There was only one problem that stood in my mind... the Yellow River Trade.

It seemed wherever I went, they were there. From what I'd gathered, Taiwan was part of Hanajima's land, but the Yellow River merchants were still allowed to wander back and forth, to extract resources that were the rightful property of the Empress. How could Ruyanpe allow this? I gritted my teeth. At least leave the people of this place to their own devices, not to the barbarians who flew the flags of a failed ideology from me and their king's world.

They would need to be dealt with, removed from the island if I was going to carry out my plans.

There was a knock on the door, a minute later, Zhou entered. “Bambang wants to see you.” she said, her voice shaken.

I stiffened, my bravado from when I sent the guards away no longer there. “If he wants to see me, he has to merely ask.” I replied, although my shaking hands might have conveyed less confidence than what I had wanted to present.

“He wants you to come to Kempung Rayang... Hyou, I don't think it's a good idea to go.” Zhou sat down and hugged me, taking me by surprise. Tears were starting to fall from her eyes and she buried her head in my shoulder, I found myself petting her head to try and console her. Suddenly she pulled back and looked at me. “Let's run. You don't have to go. We can head south, I can find us a fishing boat. We can go south, find a new home. I don't... I can't...”

“I'll be fine,” I said with as much firmness as I could muster. In truth, I had no idea if I was going to be. But I didn't want to see her cry, given what we had been through. “If... if I hypothetically wasn't... I trust you as my successor.” Zhou seemed taken aback and unsure of how to respond, trying to mouth No, but being overtaken by sobs. “The people trust you, or at least the men do.” ha, even with imminent death hanging over my head, I was going to slutshame my best friend. Japan 1, China 0. “You've run a ship before, what is a village except one giant ship that needs a captain?”

Zhou smiled a little and tried to say something but was suddenly overwhelmed by sobbing again, I simply hugged her and stayed like that for several hours until I couldn't wait any longer.

As I got up and went outside, a large group of villagers stood outside in front of me. “I assume that you've all heard...” I said, trying my best not to seem grave, but failing. “I am going to Kempang Rayang. The Chieftain wants to talk to me about some matter. Please don't worry, I'm sure I'll come back in one piece. If I don't come back, remember the laws that I've laid down, and revere the local spirits. I'm sure you'll all do very well.”

Adiputera, a young man with a tattoo around his right eye, spoke. “Bambang calls himself the lord of this place, but it's you who freed us, and it's you who we elected our Kepala, to protect us and guide us. Many of us were warriors before we were captured and made into slaves. If he harms so much as one finger on your hand, or a strand of hair, we shall lay siege and slaughter them in all directions, and people will know that we aren't slaves any longer, but the Kepala's sons and warriors.” he bowed to me, and the other villagers did as well.

I muttered something about how I was sure it wouldn't come to that, although deep inside, part of me was filled with love for them. They were my children, my people, more than the people of Hanajima had been to any real extent. To some extent they still saw me as possessing some supernatural authority, having some spiritual power or Mana, as many of them called it, but they also saw me as a person, who they trusted with the power. At the moment they had not much choice, I was the only person who could really fit the role, but maybe in time, it would be by free choice and not necessity.

I bid farewell to all of them, except six who volunteered to be my guards, and made my way toward Bambang's fort.
Kempang Rayang

Hours passed before I reached it, but the guards of Kempang Rayang recognized me and let me in, although they made my guards stay outside. I told them that everything would be alright, and while they were not satisfied with that answer, they acquiesced. I walked further and further into the village, my eyes darting from all of the people who seemed friendly but my brain whispered paranoid thoughts about.

As I reached the village center and entered the central building, Bambang sat, looking extremely grave. “Is it true that you freed all of the slaves I gave you.” he asked calmly, which made me worry more than if he had been angry.

I nodded. “I did,” I replied, not defiantly, but calmly, as though I did not see anything wrong.

“Do you have a good explanation for the disrespect you gave me?” Bambang asked.

“I thought that it would be even more beneficial for you, and pay back your generosity more than if I had kept them as property,” I replied, thinking out what I was going to say next. “Free men grow more crops than slaves do, they are more loyal, and can serve all sorts of roles that slaves would not be trusted with. They have agreed to live on my land and pay me in taxes for what they grow, those taxes go to you, my lord. If this is disrespect, I am not sure I would ever be able to meet the standard of respect.”

“You are a witty one, sometimes too much for your own good.” Bambang muttered, although thinking over what I had said. For a second he seemed to change demeanor, but then went back to interrogative. “But why dismiss my guards if you are still loyal to me? Everything on the land belongs to me, for I am the source of Mana, how can you do what you like with all of that property without asking me?”

“I dismissed the guards because the freedmen would never have respected me if I had kept their oppressors there. These people have been beaten and oppressed by your guards, they won't live happily beside them.” I replied fervently, for the first time being powered by the conviction of my words. “I also would not have their trust, for it would imply that I don't really see them as free and that I am keeping the threat of a return to servitude over their heads. In regard to all property being yours, I would never contest that, but the merchants are allowed to do whatever they want with the land, so why shouldn't I do the same thing with my own slaves?”

“Watch yourself, Hyou.” Bambang warned.

“I have always been your benefactor, and have never been otherwise. But these merchants are allowed to go unquestioned, through the woods, and tearing up land. They anger the spirit lords and bring down curses upon us.” I stated, to the surprise of Bambang.

“They are tearing up land?” he asked, he looked at his advisors who also seemed surprised.

“They are mining constantly near the north of your border.” I stated with some disgust in my voice, which surprisingly made Bambang flinched. He seemed unnerved by what I said. “They try to buy the silence of villagers so that you won't be informed. This is what they do in places they plan to conquer. They trade and then conquer. My friend has come from there, she knows what they are like. Why do you trust them, but not me? Have I angered you that much?” I was laying it on thick, but Bambang seemed to buy the act, and was filled with wrath, not at me, but at the target of my own wrath.

“Take an armed contingent at once to the north and tell the merchants to leave.” Bambang shouted to one of the advisors, banging his hand against the bamboo wall. “They've disrespected me, and the gods of the land. I won't have anything more to do with them.” the advisor nodded and made haste to carry out the order. Perhaps it was because I redirected his anger, but Bambang looked at me. “I'm sorry to have doubted you my friend. In some ways, you are much wiser than me, and I respect that. You can stay the night if you wish.”

I bowed, relieved. “Thank you, my lord.” I told him. “But I would much rather go home to the land you gave me, to see my friend again and let her know that I'm okay. She worries a lot, and I don't want to make her wait longer than she has to.” Bambang gave me his blessing and I went on my way, hoping that that would be the last I would see of the merchants for a long time.
Resident Drowned Victorian Waif (he/him)
Phra Buddhadasa wrote:Those who have penetrated to the highest understanding of Dhamma will feel that the thing called "religion" doesn't exist after all. There is no Buddhism; there is no Christianity; there is no Islam. How can they be the same or in conflict when they don't even exist? Thus, the phrase "No religion!" is actually Dhamma language of the highest level.

User avatar
Posts: 2737
Founded: Mar 07, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Saxony-Brandenburg » Mon May 09, 2022 3:08 pm

Here begins Book II of the life of Olivia Ingels.

2964 BCE

Halls of tall colonnades and ancient frescos from days of yore. Hundreds of bodies, clothed in tufted dresses and long, flowing capes dash about. They cary the sparse wealth of a region which is fat in abandoned plunder, her poorfolk gaunt from years of poverty, waves of famine and pestilence dwindling their number. A region of whom only the ruthless have managed to drag their way to prominence. They command a city among the largest of her kin. An island of urbanism in this tide of blood. The city is like a hill, with rings of houses and streets and markets winding towards the highest building in all the land. The white temple. That most beautiful and immortal house of Anu and his bride Inanna. And within this home of Lord and Lady, one man rules as priest and king.

“Hail, Lord Jushur!” The voices trumpet down the hall. A man of large stature and strength, dwarfed only by the long images of his masters, the gods, standing behind him. The long rays of daylight stream across the hall, illuminating his shimmering golden jewels upon a hairy and strong face and chest. His eyes cast authority, and yet they are concerned. For the doors of his hall’s entryway are cast open with a great force, and a man in a guardsmen uniform stumbles down upon his knees, so violently had he entered.

“Speak to me what you have so desperately came to tell.” The lord says, his voice loud and deep, resonating through the chamber.

“My lord! An army is upon your city’s gates!”

A man rarely often disturbed, his face contorts with disbelief, his knuckles tighten around the arms of his chair. “An army? But it is not close to campaign season, for the shephards are still out taking their sheep to pasture, and there is much harvesting work to be done in the fields. No Black-Headed one would dare violate his people’s welfare and let them starve by taking them all to war! Are you sure this is an army at my gate, and not some herd of refugees? For if you are blind and have worried your lord so, I will not hesitate to blind you full!”

“No, no lord!” The man gasps, struggling to his feet. “They carry themselves upon the backs of camel-beasts, and hold in their arms spears and bows, and aloft above their heads do black cloths with strange symbols fly!”

The Lord looks down at his feet, and woe soon comes across his face. “An army at my gates, by the gods… I was not prepared for this on such a day…” He looks to his left, his bald-headed eunuch of a vizier holding his tongue until now. “Of what do you make of this then Niggina? Am I to worry who shall sit upon this throne by tomorrow day?”

The bald-headed man shook his head, seemingly far less worse for ware than his troubled master. “My lord, I believe fortune has struck you this day. Do not the Gishimmarri also ride upon camels, and carry with them strange customs to show their pride? Could this not be the very same queen of the Palm trees, the mistress of black-headed slaves, to whom you have promised to be wed?”

The king looked at the man in disbelief, but nodded slowly. “Surely, I had thought, that they would be a bluff. That no such a queen would humble herself before me, and bledge a thousand warriors strong to my throne, all but for a husband?”

“And, let us not forget my lord, upon the chariot of lady Inanna herself.”

The king turned his head to gaze upon the royal image of his mistress, the goddess who resided within the chamber. His lip quivered for a moment, as he took a deep breath. “If her word be true, and this truly be the lady to whom I have sworn by hand to… It would be a great disservice to my Mistress of heavens above to deny her favored woman, would it not?”

“Surely not sure.” The bald-headed one agreed.

From across the hall, a man with metal bells in hand leaped out from behind a column. Hairless, effeminate, and covered in feathers - he jumped about before the group, giggling to himself as he chanted. “The lord had feared an army had come here for his head. Little did he know, he would sooner have a wife to bed! And thought he had been conquered, but little did he know. He would be the conqueror, with a woman down below!”

Harsh winds blow sharp across their bodies, the long robes of the Gishimmari fluttering, shielding them from the mist of dust across the air. For, though this was the greenest lands many had ever laid eyes upon - from the west, the dry expanse of the Aria brought the familiar dust with them. They could only hope it was not an omen of ill fortune.

The doors of the city were closed when they arrived, and little had been seen coming from them. All the people of the surrounding villages seemed surprised to see them, boarding themselves up in their reed hovels as the caravan passed through. It seemed as though their future refuge would not give them a warm welcome.

Their lady and prophet, dressed in white, stood upon the back of a great beast. A platform of ivory and wood laid across the back of the massive creature, dwarfing the camels her guardsmen clung onto. She leaned forward, squinting, waiting for any answer to come from the silent doors. Some reply, anything, to meet their presence. For she had promised her people a new home, where food was not scarce and where fresh water ran in great bounties. And they had listened, and parted with their homes, sold everything, to join her on this journey. There would be no going back, no matter what reply they would be given.

“Rasulah! Look!” A man below her shouted, pointing wildly as the gates began to part. A man dressed in undyed tunic sprinted forward, down the earthen path out of the city, and towards their mass. “O hear me Gishimmari! O hear me Gishimmari!” He cried, as he ran. “I come from the King! I come from the Lord of Uruk!” When finally he neared them enough to shout clearly, he fell to his knees, his chest heaving. And yet by some miracle he had the breath to call out to them, his voice loud enough to speak over the wind.

“I bear the ring of King Jushur, servant of Lord Anu and Lady Inanna! I come with his word, unto you to give! O Lady Inanna, promised bride of the Lord, he welcomes you to his city! He did not expect your arrival, and thus was unprepared to be a host! On behalf of the lord, I apologize to you for such a misdeed!” The messenger bowed his head towards the earth, kissing it for several seconds, before he began to stand again. “The Lord wishes for your presence, my Lady! He wishes for you to come with your servants to the white temple, where he may speak to you in true presence!”

Their prophet let the air sit empty for a moment, as the frantic messenger waited for her reply. She looked back to her people, tired and hungry beneath the sweltering sun, and called back to him. “And what of my people? My army of loyal servants, who have come to swear loyalty to my bridegroom. Shall they be permitted to enter the city, and rest themselves from the long days journey?”

“No!” Came a strange reply, left alone for a moment before the man responded. “The lord requests only you come, mistress Inanna!”

Her reply came quicker this time. “Tell your Lord that, should he wish to make up for his lack of hospitality, he may do it now. I will come to him, after he has provided for my tired people. Let him give his new guests food and water while they make camp, and when they have been fed I will come to meet him! Depart and ask such of him now, we may wait until you do.”

Thus another long wait would have to come, as the poor young man began the run back towards his master to deliver his bride’s request. And beneath the hot sun and between tall reeds, the Gishimmari began to unpack their things. From the backs of camels, they took their tents and blankets. They drank long and desperately from their bottle gourds, hot and thick water, but necessary with all the sweat that stained their robes. Ropes tied, stakes hammered, and tents pitched - the watchers from the city’s high walls would soon see a village spring up within an hour. Between the reeds, many laid themselves in the little shade they could find, while many others left their makeshift camp to gaze upon the marvelous sight of the roaring waters of the Euphrates. What was only storied to them in myths from this north-eastern land, now was real. For though few of them had looked upon the Jordan river, and had been told of the Nile none of them could have imagined its size, or the vast wetlands which radiate from its lifeblood. The wild birds which fly in droves from its banks, or wade in its waters. The immigrants basked in the glory of the land which they would soon call home, and their lady, it seemed, did not lie.

When next the gates of Uruk opened, it was not merely one man who came fourth. For behind him was a small team of mules, dragging behind them carts with spoked wheels, carrying bags upon bags of what they could only guess was grain. Not only this, but people too followed from them. Trumpets and drums banged and whined, as the grand welcome they had expected finally was given. The men around their Lady laughed, and said to her: “There it is, the festivity of a true queen’s welcome.” And finally could she relax, and smile. Perhaps, this great gamble would work out after all. Perhaps, she thought, she had not led this many people astray.

Olivia Ingels

When first I had laid my eyes upon that which I had only read in far future histories, I could never imagine how real it would feel. For though I had lived within the past for many more years than the future, I was shocked to discover how real it felt to see before me the ziggurat of Uruk. That shining white stone temple which stood upon a hill of man’s creation, thousands of stones which made up those massive walls, humbling me before a building the size of which I had not yet seen since the sky-scraping pillars of Dallas. The stones were not smooth upon its base, for hundreds of hands and breaths of the wind had no doubt traced their paths across those within arms reach, and made those lower ones rough to the touch. As I made my way up the stairs towards the gods home however, the more smooth they became. The fewer feet or hands had ever touched, the farther I walked up towards heaven. The temple itself was quarried Not of some simple common stone, as the Ziggurat’s hill had been, but of stone pure white, polished and smoothed so that its crystals shimmered in the sunlight. Nothing of Yanbu could compare to its glory, for this was the sweat of thousands which I felt. A monument which would surely outlive me.

The entryway itself was rather short, yet packed tighter with guards and nobles, scribes and priests, upon the summit of the hill. All around the temple they gathered with their servants, watching the column of foreigners approach their house of gods. I was alone at the front, and for the first time in a very long time I was deeply afraid to be there. It was as if I was a kid again, entering a world I was unaware of. Washed up on some god forsaken shore upon the desert’s coast. Yet now… I was a different girl. But that feeling was deeply familiar. Perhaps this is what it means to be humbled. To feel another’s power as strange and alien.

The doors opened, and horns blared their brass call. A massive room with columns the size of trees. And in the middle of it all, staring straight down towards me - the tall visage of two elongated, terrifying beings. A Lord and Lady, Anu and Inanna both. And before them both standing, the man to be my king.

It is strange to imagine that I would feel a dreadful sense of guilt as I looked upon him across the room. I had had relations with another but Alya before, when she had abandoned me to trouble herself greater with the affairs of state. Yet I knew I would soon be pledging myself to him as I had done to her. I could not shake the feeling I was betraying something then, that a taught string had finally been oh-so sharply snipped, and left to fly away with the wind.

He was a tall man by black headed standards, but my own he was probably a little shorter than me. He carried himself in the style which you may expect from the ruler of men. His beard was combed, long, neatly kept. His hair was tied behind his head, and upon his brow a golden circlet rested. From his ears hung heavy golden tassels, and from his shoulders flowed a yellow toga of sorts, speckled with vibrant red flowers sewn within the cloth. His wrists hung heavy with gold, and even his sandals were dotted with jewels. But what struck me in the most were two things. The light, which came from the distant walls in long, stark rays shimmered in eyes of green. Even from afar I could feel them better than I could see them. Perhaps it was from kohl or another feat of cosmetics, but they made me shiver with a kind of authority expected from a lord. The other was the great deal of hair which covered his chest and arms. Dark and black, which most of his dress exposed. He was large, not fat, but what I might have lecherously called in the future a “dad bod”. The kind of masculine authority which, I could not deny, was deeply intriguing.

“Hail to thee king Jushur the dauntless, son of Dimuzid the fisherman!” Called a man from behind, and those within the hall fell to their knees, and bowed their heads. “Hail to thee Queen Inanna of the Aria!” Came the same man, and again they bowed their heads to me.

With the gaze of so many weighing upon my brow, my heart only began to beat faster and harder within my ribs as I approached the Lord himself. The sickly smells of a temple rocked my stomach with fear. He did not smile as I approached, but cocked his brow with judgement. When last he finally spoke, his voice was loud and warm, but not with friendship but natural authority.

“You are young, but as tall as an olive tree. Is that why the Gishimmari had chosen you to be queen?”

The sudden question shook me for a moment, as I began to ask myself what he meant. That was before I remembered just how I looked in my own reflection. How I hadn’t truly aged since I was eighteen. I blushed a little, and tried my best to look back at him confidently. “I have lived to see thirty five summers, my lord.”

He seemed surprised by this, with a little curl on his lip. He chuckled, scratching his beard. “Then you are blessed by the gods. A giant with radiant youth… Is that why you do not cover much of your skin?”

Perhaps it was that my white robes were too loose, or that I never covered or cut my hair which made him think that. But he was not offended, and thus all I could do was go with what he said. “If my beauty is a gift from the gods, lord, should not I show it off and treasure it? To keep it hidden beneath thick cloth would be an insult to my blessings.”

“Your piety is proven enough, I do not doubt it. Perhaps, I think, you are fit to bear the name Inanna…” He reached out, and my spine shivered as he touched my jaw. “You have stronger bones than most women, in the jaw and shoulders. Yet your skin is soft, and you seem to have enough meat upon your bones to not be sickly. As I have promised your messengers so I will agree, I will accept your proposal to be my wife.”

I smiled sheepishly, feeling small before him. Perhaps this was the feeling women who love only men have caught addiction to. “As we have agreed then? Of the bride price in grain, wool, and cloth? Of land for my people, of status in the temple, and rooms within your palace quarters?”

He grinned for the first time I had seen, and his stoic command warmed into something which approached a welcome one. “Yes, as I have sworn. You will get your corn for your people, and your wool and cloth for their livelihood. They will have land to farm, and fields to graze. And you befit the power and status of a priest-king, though of womanhood it is uncommon. And of course, you will have a bed in my palace quarters.”

I chuckled, a bit surprised to see him say the word ‘bed’ in the tongue of the Gishimmari. “So you sleep in my peoples custom upon beds with stuffed mattress.”

He shrugged, not looking away from me with those green eyes. “Even civilized folk may take wisdom from barbarians.”

I flushed brighter red than before, as my tongue snaked from my mouth with wanting words. “Then make it a bed large enough for two, and I will cease my demands.”


With embarrassed fear I looked away towards the ground. “As your first wife, I am entitled for you to share it with me am I not?”

He laughed, tears appearing in the corners of his eyes. It would have been patronizing, had I not wanted for his appreciation.“Am I to neglect my other wives then? Surely their jealous ire would come from it.”

And though I was embarrassed,my tongue has a way of wit that responded to his appreciation. Perhaps I wanted to amuse him more, or perhaps I simply wanted greatly for more of his precious attention. “A lord may drink whatever he wishes when he feasts. But let him first sip his finest wine before he drinks of beer or water. It is only right that you take your noblest wife first, and then may enjoy the others. For, women are like flowers in your garden. The most beautiful must be tended regularly if they are to be of prized quality.”

“A poet for a wife then. Alright then I will relent and give you a bed for two in your chambers, so I will feel obligated not to neglect you as a wife. Is that all your newfound demands of me?”

“That is.”

“Then I will accept these terms.” He nodded, and from his finger slipped a ring into his palm, and held it out for me. “Take this.” He ordered, and with a delicate touch I took it, and placed it upon my own. “For first you and your people will swear your loyalty to me and become black heads as subjects. Then we can plan to be wed before the gods. What I have given you is a ring with the word “King of Uruk” inscribed upon it. You can bear it in my stead, as a sign of royalty. Do not dishonor it, or it will curl and twist, and fall off your hand as a serpent may. If you will now, kneel, and pledge yourself to your new Lord.”

I fell to my knees, and upon his outstretched fist rested my forehead. And looking down upon the ground, spoke in his tongue one final treason. “I will speak in your tongue he oath which all my subjects will swear to you in theirs. That blood is blood, and blood not to be paid for is blood not to be paid for. That I am of you, and you are of me. And I will wage war against those who wage war against you. And I will be at peace with those to whom you have made peace with. And I will render unto you all the tithes and obligations I am given as Lord and master. This before the gods I swear.”

And with curt nod of approval, he raised his hand from me. “I accept your pledge. Sit then beside me, and preside as your subjects do the same.”

And from their place at the front of the hall, the high men of my people then approached the king. With their long robes of many colors and patterns, their long hair and copper jewels. They knelt before him as I stood upon a stool beside him. And for the first time I could glimpse what being a queen of Uruk might be like. I found it tantalizing. The ritual, the authority commanded by this old hall. This hall which once housed the king and gods of a dynasty which held fealty over all of Babylonia, only laid low by the dynasty of Ur. I felt connected in a long line of kings, even as an outsider. And there I watched my people, the Shari’i, take from their belts their knives, and place them at Jushur’s feet. There, they bowed their heads towards the stone floor- and spoke in their Gishimmari tongue what I had said. That their blood is one, and blood not to be shed is blood that will not be shed. That they are one and the same. That they will wage war against their kings enemy, just as make peace with those their king had made peace with. When they rose, and belted again their sworn blades - the king removed eight more of his rings, and handed them to each. He spoke in the Sumerian tongue, and I translated like an echo as he spoke to them.

“You are now nobles of the Black-headed, servants of the Lord of Uruk, the true king of kings and ruler of the two rivers. That means you are entitled to the privileges of your station, and the trappings of your nobility. I have given you each a ring stamped with the emblem of a palm-tree, to signify you as Gishimmari nobles. Wear them with pride, for its authority comes from my own. As befits your station, each of you will be given a spoked chariot and team of horses. You can learn to ride them just as well as any camel I am sure, for that is how black headed nobles go to war. As well, I will give unto you each a village for your tribes to settle into, with land to work and much labor to be done. As your lady has made me agree, you are exempt from most taxes for these early years - but I will expect of you to fight for me with the loyalty and ferocity known from your people. Do you understand?”

They bowed in obedience.

“Then rise and go to your tribes, and have them swear the same to your ring. And through this, the bonds of loyalty are sworn. The links which form civilization, the order of life.”

“Hail, lord Jushur.” They muttered, and departed then.

And when the nobles left the Ziggurat down to the hill, they found their people left their encampment, and brought into the city’s walls. And there, they saw them feasting in their streets, in long rows with their newfound brethren. And they watched as their people feasted upon fava beans, with mutton and Persian shallot. And with the drippings of the meat smeared upon loaves of flatbread, and drank their fill from massive urns of beer through reed straws. And local and foreigner alike danced in the firelight, and caroused drunkenly with the sunset. Thus with their stomachs were bought their new king’s loyalty. And their lady’s promise of abundant food and drink fulfilled.
"When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?"

User avatar
Empire of Techkotal
Chargé d'Affaires
Posts: 400
Founded: Apr 09, 2020
Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Empire of Techkotal » Tue May 10, 2022 1:02 pm

Berlin, Germany

It was early in the morning and I was riding the subway again. While I was in the subway, I read Kemp's book over his experiences in the Spanish Civil war I fell asleep. In the background there was still the rumbling and screeching of our beloved S-Bahn (*hustle). Then it faded away until complete silence set in.

Southern Thailand, in yet unknown position

As I opened my eyes again, I was blinded by the light. The first question, that came to my mind, was to if I had missed my station. But to my surprise there was no station at all. I was surrounded by bushes and tree. The whole vegetation was completely unrecognizable and had more in common with a sub tropical jungle as with the deciduous forest in Germany. The ground was soft and wet so I stood up. While the wind blew around me I noticed, that not only were my surroundings wrong, but I also had lost all my clothes. My boots and backpack were all gone. What the hell was this, a crude joke from someone? No.. impossible I couldn't have gone from Germany and to bottom of the world. This.. something was definitively wrong. I panicked and searched in the bushes for a trace of my stuff, but there was nothing. Then I heard a shriek. I looked at the direction from there it had come and tried to be calm. Then came a shriek again, but this time closer. Whatever it was. It was closing in. Suddenly something similar to a wild boar ran towards me, while shrieking. I narrowly avoided its tusks and came to rest in one of the bushes. Then just as suddenly as the boar had come a men came running. He ran straight past me his eyes fixed on the boar.

My eyes and mouth were wide open, while I starred at this muscular one men, not because of that, but because he hold a spear with a pointy stone at its end in his hand and a wooden club at his side. I swallowed my last doubts. Confronted with the face of the awkwardness of the situation and the danger I was in. I had heard of uncivilized tribes in the yet untouched corners of the world, which kill outsiders. Slowly I crawled away from the place I had been at. I hear the rustling of bushes around me and then everything was silent. Moving a leave in front of me to the side the toes of an unidentified person came into view. Hoping that I hadn't been noticed I crawled backwards. Just to find the way I came was blocked. A spear pierced the dirt next to my face and I knew it was over for me.

I looked up and saw the red face of a man. He starred right back at me with. His gaze pierced my heart and I cowered to his feet praying. By god how the hell did I get into this position. He was definitively a dangerous men. I'm still young I shouldn't die like this, but honestly what do I have to lose. I shall die with dignity, looking at death and not cowering down like a Wiener Würstchen(wiener sausage). A German has to be prideful in face of his death. So I slowly stood up, but no matter how much I tried to encourage myself I still looked pathetic, pale and shivering in face of this men. Who to my surprise was smaller then I.

He just continued to stare at me without saying a word. So I took all my courage together to ask him:

"Hello. I'm very sorry about this, but I seem to be lost."

Silence. Oh hell of course there was silence. This red monkey who had never lived in civilization would never understand me. But nonetheless I continued.

"You see I come from a place called Germany and I don't know what happened to me. I woke up here without clothes and my belongings. I shouldn't be here."

The men still starred at me. The bushes rustled and even more men came towards me. Oh. God I had fucked up there was no escape. This was the end.

"Tie him up we will bring him back to the village. I have many questions."

Said the men in a strange language. Even stranger I could understand him without problems. Even though I'm sure I have never learned or heard such a language before. The men pushed me to the ground an bound my wrist behind my back together. I was then forced to stand and walk behind them. One of them was always behind me with his club ready. Sparring a few glances at those men, I could say that they were most likely Asian and from the vegetation around me we could in every got forsaken jungle left in Asia. Though they wore more clothes then their primitive cousins you see from time to time on a picture about strange isolated tribes and they looked different from the very old pictures from our colonial times. In any case this was definitely not Africa or the America so I shouldn't have to many problems.

The group made its way out of the undergrowth and came into the open. Before me vast fields filled with water and some plants stretched out. We walked over a path towards a collection huts standing on wooden logs. Their roofs seemed to consist out of straw, but on this distance it could be everything. Sparring a glance backward I saw my guard and behind him two men carrying the bound boar. He was already dead. Before we even reached the village or that is what I would call it, children come to us while cheering and shouting. They looked at the who had starred a hole into me and he greeted them. Then they looked at the boar and cheered even louder. Once they saw me they fell silent and just starred. Honestly that starring was starting to scare the shit out of me. What was wrong with me. Had I become some strange sacrifice my mind thought of every possibility worse then the one before.

Then we finally reached the village I saw that it was even dirtier then I had imagined. Animal rest hang out in the open and broken pottery lay around. The huts were made out of wood, but didn't look very comfortable.
After arriving at the center of the village the group dispersed. The men with the boar went away and the red faced man went into the biggest wooden hut I had seen yet in this rundown village. Only the guard remained. Several children, old men and women gathered and whispered, while starring at me. A strange smell came from the big hut and we had to wait for a time, which felt like eternity to me. This position was already uncomfortable and then having to stand motionless was even more uncomfortable. Not to mention that I completely naked. Oh lord please just release me of this hell. If this is purgatory then I would like to just
die without a chance to got to heaven.

After a while the men came back followed by an old women clothed in simple garnets decorated with colorful stones and bones. She held a stone knife in one hand and a bowl in the other. She came slowly closer to me. The guard pushed me to the ground and then the woman cut my arm with the knife and collected some blood. Afterwards she went back inside. There was again some strange smell and the red faced men went inside. After taking his sweet time he came out again and proclaimed what he had heard from the old woman.

"The gods have spoken this pale skinned man is not a messenger of death he seems to be from a far away land. I shall personally acquire more about him and this mysterious land."

After having proclaimed this the people slowly parted and the men came towards me.

"My name is Obashku and I'm the brother of the chieftain. What is your name?"

"My name oh Obashku is Alfred. I'm but a simple person from Germany who lost all his belongings and clothes and I'm currently lost in this strange land."

Obashku smiled. "So you are a merchant. It definitely fits, but you must understand I still have doubts about you. But first we shall find you some old clothes. You cannot continue to walk around like this."

That said he went into the hut and brought a loincloth out. I happily took it and then he guided me to a fireplace inside.

"You are now my guest and shall remain here until my brother comes and decides what we do with you. In the meantime you will earn your stay hear and help us out. Now I'm interested in the your land Alfred pale skinned."

I told him about the topography of my land and told him that we were technological superior, but I avoided to mention the technologies that would seem like magic and make him doubt me again.

"I see your land was one of milk and honey. That might be the reason for your sickly appearance. You never had to fight against nature and never became strong. But what brings someone like you so far away?"

"I don't know I was there and in the next moment I was here. Something strange happened which only the gods can explain."

"Indeed only the gods can explain your appearance out of nowhere. I would have certainly heard of someone like you before. But now its time to sleep. There is still a wood hut with a bit of space. The men that lives there is currently on a journey with my brother. So you can stay there for a while."

And so he guided me to the hut and wished me a good night. When I went to sleep I heard someone at the door. Maybe it was the guard again. After waiting for a while without anything happening I slept in.

User avatar
Posts: 2737
Founded: Mar 07, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Saxony-Brandenburg » Wed May 11, 2022 2:15 pm

2964 BCE

A black-headed woman sits atop her home, her hands are dirty and covered with mash. Her wrists burn from the strenuous labor that has taken her all day. Yet this is her turn to work, and soon she will enjoy the fruits of her labor. As she works, she chants a hymn to her goddess, blessing her brew. Upon the shelf just above, a small figurine of that same goddess watches over her work. Together, they sweat and labor to brew the life-giving beer.

“Borne of the flowing water,
Tenderly cared for by the Ninhursag,
Borne of the flowing water,
Tenderly cared for by the Ninhursag,

Having founded your town by the sacred lake,
She finished its great walls for you,
Ninkasi, having founded your town by the sacred lake,
She finished it’s walls for you,

Your father is Enki, Lord Nidimmud,
Your mother is Ninti, the queen of the sacred lake.
Ninkasi, your father is Enki, Lord Nidimmud,
Your mother is Ninti, the queen of the sacred lake.

You are the one who handles the dough and with a big shovel,
Mixing in a pit, the bappir with sweet aromatics,
Ninkasi, you are the one who handles the dough and with a big shovel,
Mixing in a pit, the bappir with dates and honey,

You are the one who bakes the bappir in the big oven,
Puts in order the piles of hulled grains,
Ninkasi, you are the one who bakes the bappir in the big oven,
Puts in order the piles of hulled grains,

You are the one who waters the malt set on the ground,
The noble dogs keep away even the potentates,
Ninkasi, you are the one who waters the malt set on the ground,
The noble dogs keep away even the potentates,

You are the one who soaks the malt in a jar,
The waves rise, the waves fall.
Ninkasi, you are the one who soaks the malt in a jar,
The waves rise, the waves fall.

You are the one who spreads the cooked mash on large reed mats,
Coolness overcomes,
Ninkasi, you are the one who spreads the cooked mash on large reed mats,
Coolness overcomes,

You are the one who holds with both hands the great sweet wort,
Brewing with honey and wine
You the sweet wort to the vessel
Ninkasi, you the sweet wort to the vessel

The filtering vat, which makes a pleasant sound,
You place appropriately on a large collector vat.
Ninkasi, the filtering vat, which makes a pleasant sound,
You place appropriately on a large collector vat.

When you pour out the filtered beer of the collector vat,
It is like the onrush of Tigris and Euphrates.
Ninkasi, you are the one who pours out the filtered beer of the collector vat,
It is like the onrush of Tigris and Euphrates.”

And when the work is done, and the beer is filtered into the collector vat, she divides it into four jars. Those four jars to be delivered to her four neighbors, the ones who she shares beer with. The next week, another among them will brew the beer, and sing the same hymn as she did while she worked. But for now, the thick soupy liquid grain can rest. And to reward herself, she pours from her own jar a cup, and raises it towards the figure upon the shelf.

“To you, Ninkasi.” She speaks, and takes a welcome drink of the divine elixir.

Elsewhere in the city, a bald-headed man, with long nose and dark eyelashes points towards a stone carving upon the wall. Six young boys each look up in wonder at the carving, where three hemispheres cover the world one after another, growing greater and more cosmic the farther out the grow. The man is a priest of the god An, the personification of the heavens itself. Thus he, not only a priest, but a man who had gazed upon the blankets of stars from the highest points - and been taught to recognize each as a holy and heavenly body and constellation.

“And who can tell me what consists of the first layer of heaven?” He asked, pointing to the smallest hemisphere above the earth.

“Jasper!” One boy excitedly replied. “And the stars!”

“That is correct.” The priest replied, motioning his hand all across the sphere. “And this is where all the lesser beings reside, those which are not god but are not of our mortal plane. The realm of the heavens in which we look up to and see beneath the night. That great darkness between the heavenly bodies. This is also where the eyes of the gods themselves reside. That where you can see Inanna shining yellow and white. She resides there, so she may look upon her people.”

“But where do the Anunaki live?” Another boy asked. “Aren’t they weaker, and lesser than the Anuna?”

“Ah, that would be upon the second layer!” The priest responded, pointing to the second hemisphere around the earth. “Where their slaves, the Igigi were exiled. Do you remember what I told you about the Igigi?”

“Uhhh… No.” Another among them plainly stated, with none others chirping up to fill the void.

“Well, you ought to remember your studies, or perhaps you will end up like them! The Igigi were beings created long before man, who looked much like you or I, but now carry the traits of many a beast. They rebelled against the Anunaki, and thus were punished for their insolence to be cursed with beastial traits. After this curse, the Anunaki banished them from the earth and created man with greater wisdom. Now, the Igigi, cast far into the second sphere of saggilmut stone, only come to earth as a curse. They are demons, and only seek to harm. Thus the Annunaki protect us from their cast of creation.”

“Thats scary!” One boy yelled, pointing angrily at the carving above. “They are like Jinn! I don’t want to see any!”

The man snorted. “Then do not wander into the ruins of the old ages young one. Those dwellings of rough stone, or caves with painted walls, which were dwelled in long before the last cycle. Otherwise, you may be cursed by the Annunaki’s rebellious slaves. Heh heh…” He looked down to see many of the children frightened, and, realizing that he had actually scared the children, felt a pang of embarrassed guilt. “But. Eh. Let us move on then… The third layer is the god Anu himself, for he is all the cosmos and thus wraps around it, and within him all the universe is. He is made of luludānītu stone, and acts as a shield for all things. He keeps within himself the ordered universe, for outside of him is the great saltwater sea of Nammu. Eternal chaos, which no ordered thing can be within. His consort, Ki, is the earth we live upon. She is all the earthly things we know, and it is between Anu and Ki that all things knowable to man can exist. Ki is both what we see here, and what lies below the ground since it too is able to be known by man. Because within Ki lies the land of the dead…” He looked down to see the children scared out of their witts, and, in a panic, tried his best to smile. “Oh! Do not be alarmed. There is nothing wrong with the land of the dead. For it is not a scary place, but one just as familiar to you and I upon landed surface. Where all the dead go when they are buried, and sink into a great lake of Abzu! Fresh, clean, happy water… yes, where all the dead are together and far away from evil saltwater. Isn’t that nice?”

He said these measly assurances, but nothing it seemed would shake the fear from their eyes. His head felt light, and he began to terribly worry how it was he was going to explain to their parents why these children could not sleep tonight.

From the corner of his eye, the priest began to notice a woman staring straight at him. For a moment he was convinced she wasn’t, but as he flicked his gaze over to her, she made direct eye contact with him, and waved. He didn’t think anything of it for a moment, before he began to notice more about her. Dressed in loose white robes, with long black curls and a gold circlet upon her brow. He looked down at her rings, and saw one upon her middle finger which unmistakably was royal. It took not long for him to connect the dots, and guess this was the king’s future bride to be.

“O-oh! Uh, may I help you?” He asked sheepishly, looking around to see the children had fled elsewhere in the temple.

“I hope I did not disturb you too greatly.” She replied, walking from the corner and up to the stone carving. “I only wished to speak with a priest of the black head’s sky-god. I am fascinated by all aspects of your culture, I must confess.”

The man smiled nervously, unsure what to do, or why she had come here alone. He watched as the woman traced her fingers across the domes covering the earth, and followers the stars with her fingers as their movements circled across the sky. “Well.” He stammered, seemingly enchanted by her fixation with the model. “We are the land of Kengir, blessed by the gods with wisdom of the heavens! The Annunaki themselves came from their sky-palaces to deliver this knowledge to us.”

Her eyes flicked suddenly to him, as his last words seemingly flipped a switch in her mind. “The Annunaki you say? They came from palaces in the sky to teach you about the stars?”

“Well- yes that is correct. Not I but, our ancestors…”

“The Annunaki, who hold slaves of proto-men, and live in the most distant stars?!” She asked, pointing violently towards the outer rings of the carving.

“Well- yes!” He said with a certain confused starkness.

“Aliens…” She muttered to herself, a strange sounding word in an utterly foreign tongue he could not understand.

“Yes…?” He said, having no idea what he was agreeing to.

“These Annunaki- did they themselves tell you the earth was flat?” She asked, stepping closer to him.

“Well- no I do not believe so. That is simply common knowledge. If you look upon the earth, it is flat. We have stories of the four corners of the earth but, they come from our own history.” There was a pause as she considered this, and as she began to think, she walked over to a piece of papyrus and pen, and began to fiercely scribble something down.

“Are you alright my lady?” He began to ask, before she suddenly rushed back towards the carving upon the wall.

“Does Anu cover merely the top of Ki or does he encompass all of it?” She asked, pointing towards where lines of the hemisphere touched the earths surface.

“Why, it covers it.”

“And does Abzû possess any borders but its’ wall with Anu?”

“No, it flows forever outwards.”

“My people have pictured earth as an island, surrounded on all sides by Abzu. I look at your model, and I see that in fact, Abzu can still touch the earth here, for if it flows all around, it surely touches and pollutes the fresh water underneath lady Ki.”

He saw her point, as she wildly touched at where, seemingly by the picture, the two oceans meet.

“And what of Ki’s freshwater? Should it now all flow out the sides of the earth, or does it have walls to hold it in?”

“It does not.”

“So how does it stay there?”

“Well… it merely does! That is the order of the universe.”

“I look to the earth to try and compare this to, and do you know what I see?”


“An egg.”


“An egg.” She repeated, and pointed at the drawing she had made. Three concentric circles with each were labeled Ki, fresh water, and Abzû. “What if- what if!? Forgive me, but I have long asked what if Anu wrapped around the universe like the shell of an egg? Completely, upon all sides! An egg’s shell, when not porous, completely keeps water out from its precious insides. That water is the salt water of Abzû, and within it are the yolk and white, correct? Think of the stars and the gods as suspended within the white, and the earth as the yolk. Then the earth must not be as you have said, us humans believe flat- but spherical! The shape of an egg’s yolk!” With heaving breath, she pointed frantically at the page.

The priest, not knowing what to do, looked from her drawing to her eyes. He hadn’t noticed it before, but they weren’t quite normal. Her pupils were oddly large, and the whites of her eyes were very red, as if filled with some combination of priestly inhalations. He was shaken for a few moments as he wondered “Is this what divine possession looks like?”

When he realized he had not replied to her frantic motions in quite some time, the woman sighed, and placed down the papyrus. “It is alright to not understand me… I have been taken over by my passions.” She muttered, and looked back to the carving. “Forgive me if I have misstepped.”

“No!” He replied, trying his best to reassure her. “They say you speak with spirits do you not? Perhaps you have been sent this by the Annunaki! Of course, one cannot know for sure…” He smiled in a half-hearted attempt to make her feel better, and in return she gave him a little smile.

“Thank you. I am glad to see someone who understands. I would like to ask a favor of you, if you would not mind.”

“What is that?”

“I want to see your star charts. The positions of the gods upon the heavenly spheres. And if you would not mind, I would like your assistance for a few moments. I have… been overcome with a passion of this project.”

“Of course but, should you not be with your husband? Should the king not worry of your absence this long my lady?”

“I wish to impress him.” She replied, taking a few steps back and staring at the floor. “He knows I am blessed, but I am not confident he knows of my connection with the gods fully. I want to show him my knowledge, so that I may be more than a wife to him. To also be an advisor on godly matters. If I am correct, then surely he and all who question his appointment of me to the service of lady Inanna will no longer doubt my authority. Why, the secrets to the gods may be better unlocked with a better understanding of the constellations.”

Very confused as to why this woman, taken up by some kind of spiritual mania, would come to him for assistance. Unable to question it however, he simply did as she had asked. “And what would that mean?”

“Teach me your ways of understanding the stars, and I will gain your lords confidence. And for this tutoring I can better stand to reorder this chaotic land. Where many a god has been defiled, and where perverse foreign beliefs of barbarous folk have poisoned the two rivers by the fools of Ur. My bridegroom and master seeks to reclaim Kengir for the dynasty of Uruk, then it is my duty as his bride to assist him the best way I can, in understanding the will of the gods above.”

He paused for a moment, considering the request. “If that is what you wish… I can find some tablets to take with you, that you might be able to study the nights sky with. But do not break them - for they are fragile and old. Not as many look up to the celestial bodies in dark times as these. The people of Ur smashed many when they had banned the worship of the Annunaki and the gods outside seven.”

The strange woman nodded somberly as he said this, and then looked at him, unsettlingly, straight into his eyes. “Not for long will this dark era of ignorance last. Do not worry. I will one day scrub every mention of Ur, her queen, and their seven from living memory. No one will remember them, or what they did to the wisdom of Kengir.”

The priest stood there, confused - for he felt a great deal of rage within the woman, who he believed meant every word she said. When last she released her clenched fists, and breathed a sigh of release, she looked at him much more pleasantly. “I will send a servant to collect the tablets when you pull them from your records. Thank you, Abgal, for your assistance tonight… I found it… enlightening.”

“Well my lady, I did not do much but listen.” He said with a shrug. “But I appreciate the sentiment.”

“That was enough.” She replied, and, with a gentle nod, made her way down the hall and into the world below.
"When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?"

User avatar
Posts: 3476
Founded: Apr 27, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Suriyanakhon » Fri May 13, 2022 7:20 pm

Kinoshita Grace

Kampong Kembang

With the ordinance that the merchants were to leave all of Kampung Rayang's territory and not to return, Bambang announced to his neighboring kin that the merchants had wounded his honor grievously, that they had no respect for either him or the gods of the land, and that they were pulling the wool over all their eyes as it were. He let it be known that anyone who desired freedom from the merchants would have his backing if they refused to leave when told. All of the tribes related to Bambang immediately announced for him, ordering the merchants out of their hunting grounds and other hereditary territories, and being prepared to give battle if their orders weren't accepted.

Seeing that the arrogant Chinese could be driven out, and that they had little power over the chieftains of the island, other villages started to express interest in the same thing, having long harbored suspicions and aversions to the merchants who traveled over their land. Others, less outraged and more cynical, saw the opportunity to rob the merchants while they were making their departure.

All of northeast Taiwan was in the hands of either Bambang or his kinship group.I had no idea how the merchants were going to react to this, but for the moment, they were out of my hair. Now I could focus on what I loved doing best, creating and teaching, rather than being disturbed by strangers.

I decided that I was going to teach Zhou my new writing script before anyone else. She took her seat next to me, curious, as I explained what each syllable meant, and how to write them properly. I had to admit, the gentle touch didn't come easily to me. The fact that Zhou was illiterate, and that her grasp on Rayangese was rough to begin with, compounded on my troubles. By the time we got through our first lesson, I was about ready to throw away my brush and decide teaching wasn't right for me.

Before I could do that, a guard entered through the door. “Kepala, we captured a dozen Chinese merchants who were trying to cross through our territory.”

Me and Zhou looked at each other, before making our way to the town square. Kampung Kembang was still very primitive, with elevated houses that could withstand potential flooding but weren't much in the way of comfort. Despite that, as I walked pass them, I felt a sense of pride. This sense of pride gave way to amazement when we finally reached the square and I saw ten faces that I had not expected to see ever again.

I didn't know what to say, so luckily Zhou broke the silence before I had to. “Hey Huang!” Zhou exclaimed with inappropriate enthusiasm to see her old crewmates, waving at him as though we were a distance away. The village guards looked very confused, I ordered them to drop the famished castaways onto the ground. From the looks of it, none of them were in much state to run away.

“Hi Zhou...” the most vocal of them, Huang coughed, from being roughed up or just thrown in the dirt I couldn't tell. “So you're the head of this village now... how did that happen?”

“We constructed it.” I replied, crossing my arms as I thought about what to do with Huang and the other merchants with him. None of them had ever been cruel to me, or Zhou, I don't remember a single one of them wronging me.

“What happened to you?” Zhou asked them.

“We washed ashore and have been wandering around this island for months. Foraging, hunting, making traps. Anything for food.” Huang replied. “All because of that damn Hiroto and his desire to steal that statue. I suppose you're going to throw us out... or kill us?” the other crewmembers tried to hide their fear, but I could tell they were unnerved at the position they were in, and didn't know whether to appeal for their lives or not. Perhaps they might that would make me even angrier and make whatever punishment I was going to give them worse. If that was the case, I decided to relieve their fears.

“Regardless of the fight that caused us to crash, I don't have any ill will toward you.” I told them, which seemed to relieve a number of them who slumped down as though they were holding their breaths before. “You've never actually done me wrong, and I'm not going to execute a bunch of hungry castaways anyway. You can stay here until you're better, and leave if you desire, or...” I trailed off as though I were trying to create suspense, but really I was just trying to see how to make this scenario work best for my ends. “You can live here and swear fealty to me, the Kepala.”

Huang didn't seem to know how to respond, so I continued. “My hospitality isn't contingent on how you respond, but keep this in mind. We are more than happy to receive people who can fight, plow, and trade. You can have a home right now, so long as you remain loyal to my person and,” I glanced at Zhou. “To my co-ruler, Zhou.” she looked surprised, but Huang and the others nodded their heads and bowed to us, announcing that they would serve us in exchange for our protection and care.

“Banyu, please take these men to the infirmary and make sure they have food.” I ordered the guard captain, who seemed apprehensive, but bowed his head and obeyed my orders. “We'll organize construction for their houses soon.”
Resident Drowned Victorian Waif (he/him)
Phra Buddhadasa wrote:Those who have penetrated to the highest understanding of Dhamma will feel that the thing called "religion" doesn't exist after all. There is no Buddhism; there is no Christianity; there is no Islam. How can they be the same or in conflict when they don't even exist? Thus, the phrase "No religion!" is actually Dhamma language of the highest level.

User avatar
Posts: 6689
Founded: May 02, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Orostan » Fri May 13, 2022 8:53 pm

Last edited by Orostan on Tue May 17, 2022 11:55 am, edited 2 times in total.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN
Ernest Hemingway wrote:Anyone who loves freedom owes such a debt to the Red Army that it can never be repaid.

Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:“To understand the man you have to know what was happening in the world when he was twenty.”

Cicero wrote:"In times of war, the laws fall silent"


User avatar
Islamic Holy Sites
Posts: 8288
Founded: Mar 20, 2021
Authoritarian Democracy

Postby Islamic Holy Sites » Sat May 14, 2022 7:29 am

Ali looked at the people, no, not the people, his people, his subjects. All twenty of them. He had called them to The Murder Place (as everyone now called it), where two deaths occurred in less than a minute. He cleared his throat.

“I recognise that this town-“, someone scoffed, “-this town is culturally and geographically independent from Uruk and the rest of Sumer.” Several less educated people frowned. “This place is really different from everywhere else,” he explained. “And so I declare this town exempt from taxation.” No reaction. “We shall develop this area and make Uruk and Babylon embarrassed at their feebleness in comparison.” Several people started chuckling. “I have thought for hours and finally made this code:

The use of money with other members of this community will be strictly forbidden.” Several people tried to object, but Ali shouted them down.

“The use of money with other members of this community will be strictly forbidden! We shall be divided into several jobs: teachers, hunters, farmers, traders, workers, cooks medicine-people and warriors. More jobs may be added as the need for them increases. Those too old or young to work will be exempted from this rule. Everyone shall have rations depending on their needs. The hunters and warriors will provide the rations for everyone, as well as anyone who has spare time. People are allowed to have two jobs. If a hunter or warrior catches extra, they may keep it. Traders will be the only ones allowed to use money. The warriors will act as a police force as well as defenders. This town will offer the poor and unhappy a new home here. Our homes will be made more durable. Homes will also be built on the ground instead of on the river, for inhabitants who are uncomfortable. And finally, a new number system will be added, due to me having a blurry vision which revealed them, and showed them to possibly be much more practical than the current version. Thank you.”

Ali retreated into his house and everyone dispersed.
Last edited by Islamic Holy Sites on Sat May 14, 2022 11:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
Call me Muqaddasia.
Proud member of the GCN. Host nation of SETZA. Founder/Co-founder of the (now defunct) IDSF Founder/Co-founder and first in command of the (now defunct) UCA. Founder of the (now defunct) ICRD.
BREAKING NEWS: Galapagos war 4 might be coming | “Aursi among best Muqaddasi allies,”, says government official | Muqaddasi weapon industry expanding WIP

User avatar
Posts: 151
Founded: Oct 17, 2016


Postby Sobeiska » Sat May 14, 2022 11:23 am


Anna woke up in a ditch: the shower’s dew beaded up against her skin like goosebumps, dying myrtle trees heaped their crisping fiery petals around her. The moon was at its perigee, bright and proud as it ever could be, as its ghostly light bounced off Anna. She started to stir as an inquisitive child started poking her face, trying to wipe what she thought was stage makeup off it.

Anna shot up, “who are you, where am I?”

The child was mortified, the makeup would not come off, she ran to get water and started to try and rub Anna’s shoulder with the wet cloth.

Anna: “Are you okay? I’m perfectly clean, I don’t need another bath”

The Kid: “My name Ah Lam”

Anna: “Hello?”

Ahlam: “My name, my name is Ah Lam”

Anna: “I am Anna, where is your home?”

Anna stood up and realised she was naked, and was without stop mortified.

Anna: “I’m so sorry!”

Ah Lam: “It’s not summer! Go get clothes, it’s c-cold!”

Ah Lam: “But lady does not have clothes, her makeup does not come off, it must be her skin! She is from the moon!”

Ah Lam: “You must come with me, I have to show my mommy, I found the moon!”

The child, without even letting Anna speak, immediately grabbed her hand and dragged her over a hill, from which Anna could see smoke in the distance, and soon she could see hatched straw roofs climbing up, and beautiful skin-covered lanterns. Anna of course was not going to argue, she quite literally had nowhere else to go and she could smell the inviting scents of a rich harvest: squash, mustard, radishes, all kinds of wondrous things. It was the Mid-Autumn festival, a tradition long-dedicated to the worship of the moon, its participants hoping to one day become immortal like the ever returning moon.

Soon the kid let go of Anna, and ran straight to her mother, who dressed in a heavy hemp robe, keeping the cold air out.

Ah Lam: “Mom, look, it’s her, look!; We’re going to live forever!”

The Mother: “Oh my, by Yaunshi, it is, her majesty!”

Anna was uncertain if the mother was playing along for the child, or dead serious and the high expectations of her sudden and jarring arrival began to concern her. Was she a deity to these people?

The Mother: “I am Aeuj Aen, and you have deeply humbled me, your grace; please you must let me give you something”

Anna: “Have you anything to wear, it is getting terribly cold.”

Aeuj: “Certainly”

The woman invited Anna into her home, she found a burning fire, as the noise of the festival behind her faded and a variety of bread and poultry laid out on the table; the house smelled of the oak that lined it, among other less pleasant odours. As Anna kept looking, she saw that Ah Lam had come in from behind the corner and was playing with some small stones, tossing them as if she was tossing dice. Perhaps she thought it was her lucky day? Aeuj handed Anna a rather fine robe made of ramie, anything was better than nothing, but this was certainly something.

Anna at this point was quite grateful to the woman and thanked her, but she made sure to keep herself reserved, if she was to be thought a goddess why risk blowing the cover?

Aeuj: “It is my deepest honor, please you must meet your priestesses”

Anna kept her head up, realising that she was entirely serious, and slowly walked through the curtained doorway of the house. Back out to the sound of children playing and adults chanting. There was a large bonfire in the centre of the village where many were gathered for warmth on the cold autumn night. Gathered in front of a relatively large stone building were 11 priestesses, with another in front of them all. They were singing something, but it was hard to tell in all the noise.

Aeuj ran up to the head priestess, who immediately became upset at the intrusion, but upon realising the occasion was struck with disbelief and annoyance, that was until she turned around, and saw Anna.

Priestess: “I am Fahn Cinq, I am of a long line of historians and wisepeople, your makeup doesn’t deceive me you profane the goddess!”

Anna: “Wipe it off my face then, go ahead and try”

Fahn rushed up to Anna and grabbed her by the cheek and did not find the chalky paste she expected to find, she found milky soft skin, utterly harmless, and without a blemish on display. She suddenly felt a great shame

Fahn: “I-I-I am sorry for what I said”

Anna: “You best be, perhaps you can earn my forgiveness, but let you be cursed with a short life, the life of a fly, until you learn to keep your faith when it is right before you!”

The village soon came to notice Anna’s booming shouts, and soon the collective delusion took root in them all, there were wails, and shouts, all in desperate attempts to calm her. Without any merit to her name, she had enraptured the entire town, purely by being a pasty sunfearing fuck.

Anna, quick to make something out of the chaos, snapped into command.

Anna: “Since it is my day, and you all are such excellent cooks, so excellent that I myself could not resist but come down from the heavens, you are all forgiven”

Anna realised this delusion would not be easy to keep up, she had all the tools in her head to maintain it though. She would use the next eclipse as a powerful moment to cement her authority, but she had no idea how she would build the instruments to get the precision she needed, it would be quite the puzzle.

User avatar
Empire of Techkotal
Chargé d'Affaires
Posts: 400
Founded: Apr 09, 2020
Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Empire of Techkotal » Sun May 15, 2022 3:17 am

Panic, a meal and the village were I shall stay a while in

Birds were chirping and people were talking. Somewhere outside the sound of stone meting stone was heard and the sound of grinding stone together. No matter how much I tried to ignore it. It wouldn't go away. So I opened my eyes and stood up. I was in wooden cabin or that's what I'm gonna call it, but it looked more like a rundown hut. The ceiling was made of hay....upon closer inspection it wasn't, but I'm unfamiliar with what it was. Even though this was definitely not my attic, I couldn't remember how I got here. Panic surged up in me. I looked around for the door. Problem being that this room had no windows and there was barely any light coming in through the walls and roof. Which in turn doesn't speak for the quality of this room.

Completely confused and panicking I went to the door. Had I been kidnapped or what happened to me. This hole place looks just as shit as a Russian dacha. Once I had arrived at the door I swung it open and saw a few children in front of me. They immediately run away and shout "The stranger awoke!"

They left me completely puzzled, as a primitive village lay in front of my eyes. Wooden huts with some sort of hay like roofs and all around me half naked men and women were walking around. To my shock it seemed like I wasn't in a much better position then they were. My clothes amounted to a single loincloth and that was it. No trousers, no shirts, no socks and shoes were laying around in the hut.

Oh shit, it came upon me. I had landed somewhere in Asia or Latin America. There was no other solution to the sight in front of me. There was no trace of civilization. Looking at the people and their facial features it doomed upon me I was at the bottom of this world in some shitty unexplored Asian Island or the jungles of the south Asian countries. No!!! God have mercy! Why did I have to land in this uncivilized place surrounded by Barbarians. No way they could be cannibals. Yes! That might be the case. My brain went through all the things I associated with uncivilized tribes in unexplored lands and dug up more and more disturbing ideas in my head.
There had been enough reports from our Asian colony in Papua about cannibals, so I was sure, they might also be some. Even though these reports were over a hundred years old.

I started running. I had to get out of this village. The longer I stayed, the more dangerous it would get. Running around a corner I crushed into someone and stumbled to the ground. A man in his thirties looked upon me with a grin and sharp eyes, that seemed like they were mocking me.

Ah right. I remembered what happened. I had landed somewhere in the endless depths of hell with the devil incarnate before me. Well if I'm already here it can't come any worse. The man before me had a name. He called himself Obashku. By all means, if someone asked me if he was the devil I would say yes. His eyes pierced my consciousness and seemed to read my thoughts. He only needed a pair of horns sprouting out of his head and a pair of hoes so he would look perfectly like the devil.

I might be exaggerating, but my brain was on full stress mode and I was already dehydrating as it had always been the case.

"Alfred what do you run around. You seem desperate. Could it be that our hospitality isn't to your liking?" Obashku said, while smiling at me.

"No. How could that be. I like it here very much and I was just looking around." I answered hastily. It might not have been a good answer, but it was all I could bring forward.

He looked at me unconvinced and then laughed. "It must still be uncomfortable for you, but don't worry we won't do anything to you until the chief comes back. Come now we are going to eat."

And so he lead me to his hut. There his wife had already cooked some sort of rice in clay pots and served it alongside some leaves and small weird fruits, which I couldn't identify. They ate everything else first and waited a bit for the rice to cool down until we started eating it together. Now eating with bare hands might be unhygienic, but I had no fork, knife or spoon. So I ate it with my bare hands. Afters we had finished they gave me a clay bowl filled with water, though it wasn't the clearest I had seen in my life. They drank it without hesitation and looked at me confused.

"Why don't you drink the water. Its good for you. You must drink water to stay alive." Obashku said.

Still having doubts about the water quality I hesitated a bit longer, but seeing the look in Obashku's eyes I drank the water. He seemed satisfied. Having eaten he stood up and went over to me.

"So you said you wanted to see the village? If you really want to see it, I shall guide you around."

Obashku's offer seemed tempting enough for me to accept. There was now way I would get away from here anytime soon anyway and it was unlikely that someone would come to safe me. Not to mention the fact, that my arrival and me understanding them was still a mystery for me.

"Indeed I was just going around looking at the village. So of course I shall accept your offer."

He then went out of the hut and I followed.

"This is my hut. My brothers hut is the big one right next to my. Our village has many huts."

Obashku said and then guided me to the outside of the village.

"These are our fields." Said Obashku and pointed on a vast open area full of wheat like plants. They sure looked like wheat, but their corns were smaller and looked different. Not to mention, that some parts of the field were in wetlands and pools of water. Though the use of flooding their own fields made no sense for me.

"Why do you flood your lower fields?"

"Because they are close to the river and the water keeps many pests away from our fields. The divine water god protects our crops." Said Obashku.

He then pointed down to the field bordering the woods.

"There the river is flowing. You can hear it from here. It gives us protection and gives us food. It protects our fields and makes it hard for wild animals to come to us. If you follow the river in the direction of its flow you will get to the big city. My brother is there currently."

He pointed into the distance. Afterwards he guided me to the river. It was big. Maybe around 30 meters wide and the current was relativly slow. The river unlike the rivers in Germany was wild untamed river, which went its own way through the land and didn't follow the route planned by humans. At a point he pointed at the ground. The ground was a little bit sandy, but it resembled clay. At some points the ground was indeed very similar to clay without being to sandy.

"This is there we get our clay from. I shall show you in the following days how we make clay, if you want?" Said Obashku.

"I certainly would like to make some pots and if you are willing to show me how you do it with this clay then I will do it." Certainly this was something I could look forward to.

"Then lets get back to village and come back with a basket to collect some clay Alfred" said Obashku.

User avatar
Posts: 2737
Founded: Mar 07, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Saxony-Brandenburg » Sun May 15, 2022 4:22 pm

2964 BCE

Horns blare and drums snare, the people watch from their rooftops as the royal parade goes by. Winding through the streets, the noblemen and royal court wear their finest of garments. They ride upon their spoked-wheel chariots, and solemnly follow their Lord and Lady. Their servants, slaves and freemen alike, toss gifts to the hungry crowd, whose hands desperately grasp at the bread, coins, and polished stones which are thrown out upon the road. At the front of the train, many more toss loose grain across their path, sowing the seeds of a happy marriage. Their master wears his fine cotton robes, beautifully patterned, expertly painted. He wears all the regalia and rings of his kingship. He holds in his hands the scepter of his status. For today, he holds up the heavens. Today he is Lord Anu himself. His lady stands beside him, riding the chariot he commands. She holds him close, as the cart jumps and shakes as it passes along the road. She is veiled and modest, hardly does she show more than her forearms to the sun. Crisp, loose fabric of cotton and linens shroud a dignified and submissive queen. One worthy of being his bride. For tonight she is not Inanna, but Ki. The Lady of the earth herself.

Their legion of scribes and bureaucrats, craftsmen and soldiers which are in the Lord’s own employ stand along the ceremonial stairs to the white temple. The holy ziggurat of his Lord’s charge. The steps are littered with more wasted grains and nuts, spent like sand for the occasion. The birds do not even dare to pick at them, however. Even they know not to defy tradition in a moment such as this. They carry in their arms dozens of gifts, weighing heavy on their straining muscles, having waited there for hours. Their toiling for sake of ceremony was simply par for the course on such an occasion.

And when they had come to a halt, the Lord’s nobles and courtiers departed their chariots, and made to form a line behind him. The Lord hands the reigns to a slave, who dutifully takes hold of the ponies. With each step, he must embody the seriousness of the occasion. Not like the joyful carousing that comes with some people’s weddings, these were affairs of the state, and of the world. He steps off first from the cart, and holds out a hand for his bride to take. She bows her head to him, and, grasping his hand, steps off as well. The two, hand in hand, thus begin their ascent. Four flights of steps, each stopping at a level, another event. Now at them, they throw dried beans, and barley, and nuts at the couple as they stop at each flight, one after another. The slaves laugh as they do this, while the two are made to pretend this was a somber occasion. Blessed is the bride for the veil she wears, for even she cannot help but grin as she suppresses her laughter. The poor groom is meant to still himself, and continue his somber disposition until at last he had reached the top, and looked down upon the sea of his subjects below.

Awaiting him at the top is her servants to be, handmaidens who gently tidy her robes and sweep off the litter clinging onto the fabric. One of them bows to her master, and hands him a pitcher of oil. Carefully, he takes it into both hands. Holding it aloft for the crowd, he pauses for dramatic effect. When whence he felt that all eyes were carefully transfixed upon him, he lowered the pitcher to his chest, and began to speak with a voice which echoed down the steps and through the rows of men and women below. A royal voice. The voice of a ruler.

“Before the royal court and the sworn nobles of the King of Uruk. The High priest of Lord Anu and ruler of the four corners of the earth, Jushur, son of Dimuzid the Fisherman, has come to issue a proclamation on this day. Let it be recited in all the squares of Uruk, and let it be recited in every village and settlement beneath Uruk. And spoken to every shepherds' camp and upon the banks of the sister-rivers. And that this knowledge be carried to the court of every city in Kengir. That on this most blessed day, the King of Uruk has taken a new bride. That her name is Inanna, and that she comes from royal blood and of outstanding reputation. That she is both beautiful of looks and of virtue. And that through all of her children will flow the blood of my royalty. Let all hear this and attest to this betrothal as bound by the law and my honor.” And as the Lord said these words, the lady’s handmaiden removed the veil from her head. And his Lady, knowing then what was to happen, bowed her head towards him. And her Lord then began to drizzle the oil upon her head and brow, letting the sweet, sickly smell waft into the air. And when he had finished this, he handed away the pitcher of oil, and bid her raise her head with a strong yet gentle hand upon her chin. And, looking deep into her eyes with a newfound sense of paternalistic devotion, he said to her. “Thus do I solemnly declare, she is my wife.”

The trumpets cheered as he spoke his word, and throughout the city streets the people of Uruk heard their echoes. That this proclamation was an event which all must recognize. And when their loud note had ceased, the cheering began. Loud screams of “Long live the House of Dimuzid!” came from the most flattering of courtiers, while those with less groveling tones merely applauded. And while they all forced themselves to cheer for their lord, the handmaidens of their new Lady dragged forth a throne upon which to sit. And then, when she had rested, they put the veil back upon her - that her head and hair was covered by the white cloth, and secured by a bronze circlet. And when she had sat down, the long train of noblemen of Uruk began to climb the steps towards them. One after another, in careful file, holding in their hands bundles of innumerable assortments. And when the first of them came before her, he bowed his head to her, and standing below her upon the step, the Black-Headed lord offered a fine woolen dress of red feather-tufts up to his Gishimmari lady. She waved to him, and, giving him the appreciation of a bow of the head, allowed her servants to take it with them.

And so this continued, one after another. They offered her more robes and dresses, veils and scarves of foreign pigments and beautiful woven and painted patterns. They placed jewelry and pendants upon pillows and presented them at her feet. They gave her fine sets of cookware, and drinking vessels, and storage urns inscribed with stories from mythology, or painted with men and animals, which seemed to dance as one looked across them. They offered her whole cloth for sewing, and foreign herbs and spices. Coffee had made its way, all the way from the lands of Yanbu and Murabek. Fine oils and perfume, combs and brushes to maintain her youthful beauty. Makeup from Egypt and shells from the white sea. And on and on this procession went, getting less extravagant yet still in such great quantities as nobles were replaced by courtiers, and courtiers by scribes, until each had gifted their new lady in a way which befit their station. The lesser people gave her works by their hands, furniture hand-carved by the royal workshops, and godly statuettes from the temple’s masons. Such was the quantity of the wedding gifts for a queen, that a great pile had amassed of these gifts, stacked atop eachother, that it overshadowed the woman herself.

When at last they could bare no more the attention, and the line of courtiers had grown thin, replaced more and more by common people who give only their well-wishes, and the mid-day sun had grown to begin to descend - the palace’s own scribes began to pack and account their offerings, and the palace guardsmen began to clear the stairs. And whence a clear path down the stairs, and through the crowd below had been made, the Lord of Uruk took his bride’s hand, and led her down the steps of the Ziggurat. Down the steps and through the masses, their servants followed behind waving fans of palm fronds and carrying their most valued gifts for the bride’s household. And thus did this royal convoy snake through the cheering crowd, who then began again to throw nuts and beans and grains at them. All this assault of festivities continued, until at last the two of them arrived at their palace gateway. And as the royal entourage finally disappeared through the gates and into the hallowed halls of the royal residence, the strong wooden doors of her gates slammed shut in a final conclusion to the day.

Olivia Ingels

When first my Lord and I had escaped the gaze of the entire world, and the doors behind us had closed, he reached over and grabbed me by the waist. His arms still glistened with oil in the evening light which seemed to shimmer through the windows as beautiful gold. The world was a picture, a painting by the most skilled artisans of fantasy. The world it seemed to me was endless swirls of beautiful color, my soul seemed to be fighting to tear itself from my mere body with delight! I had loved twice before, but never had I known a man like this. So strong and commanding, yet benevolent and soft as he touched me. I had become drunk on this feeling, this excitement he sent shivering through my veins. And with those strong, manly arms he wrapped the other around my waist, and before I knew it he lifted me up above his head! I could not have imagined it, and with glee I laughed with delight, like a young girl might, as this man carried me through the halls. All the while, he laughed and sang, startling the servants and making even the most mild mannered among them giggle with delight at the sight of their so-serious Lord dancing through the palace. He carried me past the many rooms of jealous-looking handmaids and concubines, past the dining rooms and kitchens, through the many rooms of innumerable functions and envious eyes. He carried me, holding me close with those strong muscles, as I drank in his smell. Masculine, with the scent of sweat from the heat of the day. Yet he was royal, and thus wore perfume and oil which mixed to create an intoxicating scent. Perhaps it was not so, but it was his scent, and thus it made my heart flutter and my skin tingle, and my arms and legs clench with delight. He carried me then until with a sudden stop we approached a doorway, with two fine doors of smooth carving and bronze handles confronted us. He looked over to me, a great beast in his arms, and smiled so warmly, rich and smooth like coffee. “Would you like to see your new chambers my lady?” He asked, and without hesitation I excitedly exclaimed “Yes!”

And when he opened those beautiful doors of dark foreign wood, the beautiful scents of luxuries wafted from the room. Of fresh-cut flowers, and burning incense, and jasmine flowers. And I gazed upon the large room, with polished stone floors and plastered walls painted a royal red. I saw many of those luxurious offerings already placed within there, with chairs long enough to lounge in, with plump cushions upon them, and tables laden with ivory and metal. A large rug which, having been woven as a circle, looked decidedly modern, as if from another time. It had fringes of loose wool, and a pattern of beige red and blue which looked as if it belonged in a department store, much less here in Uruk. Upon the walls were tapestries of the gods, polished bronze mirrors, and lamp holders. And far across from us, the walls opened up to a balcony unlike anything I had seen in 18 years of my life! With linen curtains which fluttered in the gentle breeze outside. But what was most impressive was, in front of my view, a large bed bigger than anything I had since I had entered this world. Perhaps it was a Queen size, though I would not be able to recall exactly. It would certainly be appropriate. But it was large and stood atop a frame of wooden beams of the quality the men of Ur must use to build ships. And upon this frame was a great large mattress, what a gorgeous thing, which must contain an entire flock’s worth of sheep-wool inside it. Layered atop this beautiful, immaculate bed which caused my heart to swell, clean linens which matched the walls and rug with that samer royal reds, teals, and beige.

It seemed as though I had viewed this piece of art for an hour, soaking in the sights, in the moment it took him to set me down. I gazed at the room with tears in my eyes, because I did not think I would ever experience, even as ruler of Yanbu, such levels of homely comfort. That he had bought all this for me, and it surely did purchase my heart. I screamed with delight, and threw my arms around him. “Oh Jushur!” I wailed, rubbing my face into his chest. “You have given me a home greater than I could ever have imagined! You have blessed me with a room fit for a goddess to inhabit!”

He pulled me from his chest, and held my shoulders. Looking deep into my eyes with those chocolate brown beads of wisdom and authority, of love and masculine comfort - he smiled and said so kindly to me. “For surely a temple for my goddess Inanna. A bedroom of comfort and splendor for the queen of sexuality and passion.”

He made my heart skip a beat, filled with the thrill of being wanted, of being loved. Of a man who honestly saw me as beautiful, and the object of desire. He smirked, and abruptly turned his head towards the door, and grinned. There I turned and saw his three other wives looking through the doorway, blushing and giggling into their hands. “Be gone with you, you jealous women.” He said with a hearty laugh. “And shut the doors upon your exit.” And when they did so, he motioned a hand towards the table and lounging couches in the corner, where a large jug and two massive drinking vessels sat. “Perhaps you would join me for a drink then? Your Lord wishes to enjoy your company once more.”

And, as my face became bright red with blush, he led me there and, sitting down upon the couches, he began to pour out bowlfuls of the deep purple liquid.

“And what may we be drinking tonight?” I asked with a gitty playfulness.

“Ah, a wine I think you should very much enjoy. Made from the wild berries of the mountains to the east, flavored with honey and spices and herbs.” He reached across the little table, and there grasped hold of my cup. And, taking it, he bid me open my mouth. With a steady hand, he tilted it upon my lips, and made me drink my fill in a large gulp. It was acidic and bitter, yet syrupy sweet beneath its first shock. It was perhaps the finest drink I had tasted in my life. It was pure liquid and smooth, without the slightest hint of debris of powder, like the thick porridge of the Sumerian’s beer. It was strong too, sharp and medicinal in a way which cut itself into my mind, forcing my eyes to squint as I tried to swallow it all. Seeing my reaction, he couldn’t help but laugh. “That’s alright, just get it down. I know you can do it my brave warrior queen.”

I rolled my eyes, and could feel my already flushed cheeks warming even more. “Alright then big guy, hand over your bowl. And I will make you drink.”

And thus we traded, drink after drink, until I could no more contain myself as the alcohol washed away our inhibition. “Oh my Lord.” I said with heart galloping like a racehorse. “I can no longer wait to have my bridegroom, oh how you have cruelly deprived me of him for too long.” And, climbing over and atop him, I leaned down to plant a passionate kiss upon his wine-stained lips. And there I embraced him, kissing him, drinking in his scent, feeling his body’s warmth. Until it was that he too had his fill of waiting, and sat up to face me. And, grabbing hold of my dress, faded the world into lustful heat and love.

I held him close, and felt his warm breath upon my neck. Both of us covered in sweat, too hot and tired to burry ourselves beneath the fine linens below us. I was right, the bed was immaculately soft, and it seemed to hold me just as well as his arms. I turned my eyes up to see him, looking down at me. I knew he wanted to speak, I knew he had something across his mind. And though I was basking in the happiness, the warmth, the residual pleasure of the night… I could feel a welling of worry come down my throat.

“What is on your mind my love?” I asked sheepishly, tracing my fingers across his chest.

It took him a moment to think it over, before his large chest rose and fell with a sigh, and he looked me plainly in the eyes. “I did not know you were a eunuch.”

I looked away, ashamed of myself. For surely I should have known this would need to be discussed. And in our winds of passion he had for sure recognized this, but our love was in alternate ways. I didn’t know what to say, as part of me hoped he would simply not question why it was I could bear him no children after he had seen my nakedness himself. When finally I had swallowed my fear, I finally answered him.

“I am sorry if I had deceived you.”

He shook his head, looking away. “No… No you did not deceive me dear. I remember now. Your slave had told me you posessed no child-bearing womb, I should have guessed as such.”

My throat clogged, as waves of worry and relief rocked my mind and sickened my stomach. “Then you are not mad at me?” I asked, on the brink of shaking.

Finally, his gaze returned to me, and in place of his frank expression was that warm, loving smile which was so addictive, and in a single glance rested my mind to ease. “Not at all… Your embrace is perhaps more pleasurable than any of my childbearing brides. For they lack a spirit of yours, and the ambition to eh… perhaps try unorthodox tactics upon the field.”

And with delight I squeezed him, and kissed his cheek over and over again. “Oh bless you Lord, bless your kindness and understanding! And for this I reward you with eternal devotion and faithfulness. Think, not of womb or childbearing body, your new bride can never besmirch her master’s honor! For I can bear you no rival children to challenge your beloved son Gilgamesh’s right to rule this city. And unlike the other women, who you must only allow eunuchs or handmaids to see for fear of bearing you an illegitimate child of a bastard’s descent, I cannot possibly dishonor you in such a way!”

He let out another sigh, this not of stress or relief, but comfort. And with his large hand wrapped around my shoulder, and gently touched my arm. “Oh I do not worry of your honor, my dear. For I know you are an immensely virtuous woman, and the gods would not favor one unless she had loyalty in her heart. And besides, I find your eunuch body just as, if not more lustful and nymph like than any of my harem. For your body is just as soft, and full of youthful spring and energy. And your face is without wrinkles, and your skin doesn’t sag. Only boys care for woman’s breasts, like children in need of suckling. Real men desire a greater conquest, which you provide for me just so.”

I can’t help but feel deeply embarrassed with just how much he fawns over me. A man of such power, of such pride, singing praises of a woman such as I. One who, as a child, was constantly told how masculine and ugly I was. How broad were my shoulders, and how large were my ribs. Of how sharp my jawline, or how straight my waistline. Yet he saw me as the perfect triumph of femininity. A perfect flower for he to pluck. I could not take it. It was too kind, too undeserving was I, that I began to weep into his arms, burying my head into his skin.

“Oh my sweet, do not weep. What I say is not flattery, but the truth. And I of serious disposition and cool blood would not decieve you. I would not embrace you as I do should I be repulsed by any part of my newfound woman.”

And, trembling, holding his warmth so close to me, I choked out a reply: “Thank you… I… I love you, Jushur. I love you so much.”

And he replied those words which made me forget for a moment all the hurt and pain I had ever felt. All the love and loss, the separation, the guilt and the shame of what I had done. After how I had treated my marriage to Alya. About how angry I had been made to feel by her abandonment.

“I love you too, my Inanna.”
"When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?"

User avatar
G-Tech Corporation
Khan of Spam
Posts: 63397
Founded: Feb 03, 2010
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby G-Tech Corporation » Tue May 17, 2022 9:08 am

Part 6, Chapter 22: The Mountain Cannot Bow

December 22nd, 35 AG

He was bloody, his face mottled with crimson, scarlet, the yellowing of old bruises and the deep radiant purple of new. And yet defiance screamed in the set of his jaw, the wild fire in his eyes. The guards dropped him to the dirt floor of the tent with little sympathy, stepping back only reluctantly at my gesture. I squatted next to the warrior, nearly to the level of his face as he stared downward into the bare soil, his chest heaving and his breath coming labored with pain.

"You don't need to do this. He is one man. Why suffer for someone who has abandoned you?"

The warrior's face turned up to mine slowly, his teeth bare in a rictus of a grin.

"He waits. A trial for the faithful, to prove that we are worthy of him. Your armies will burn like chaff before the flame. He said you would come, would make us pay in blood for our trust in him. Your time will come."

I exhaled through my nose a fraction, tamping down a wave of irritation. These men were broken records, their minds possessing little more than the ability to regurgitate what they had been told. I had hoped that a captain might have better faculties to draw information from, but thus far had been disappointed. Even the commanders of the ragged bands that called themselves the 'Faithful' were unsophisticated brigands, barely removed from the Neolithic savagery which any tribal kinship could claim. Their weapons, stone, their tactics, crude.

Chaff to the flame. An apt metaphor for the knots of wild men swearing fealty to this Camden which had boiled intermittently out of the landscape to decorate the snowy hills and evergreen forests with their butchered corpses. Most had little better than hunting bows and spears to take against ironshod soldiers and cavalry companies, and their numbers were sparse and growing smaller with every passing week. This Camden, at any rate, had little regard for military strategy for his followers, save to, like an ancient pagan king, pile the corpses of his servants for a pyre of his own demise.

Attempts to convince them to give up their priest-king had proven fruitless, and interrogation likewise futile. Operational security for the location of their ruler was very high, so high that I was beginning to get the impression that most of his followers genuinely didn't even know where he was supposed to be. It had taken less than two weeks march to disperse the hovel-settlement which the locals called Sariah - barely more than an assemblage of a few hundreds mud huts and roughhewn leantos, mired in filth and human waste.

It had had to be burned to the ground, more out of a very real need to prevent the outbreak of disease than any malice toward the inhabitants. Most had few worldly possessions and had carried away little even when given time to collect their belongings. The Eyes had confiscated several copies of what I took to be a holy scripture, the assembled scrawlings of a madman with a very shaky grasp of what might have been liberation theology, or perhaps one of those Evangelical cults.

Definitely a cult in modern interpretation, of course. Interviewing just a few of the locals had revealed a very real lineage of the prophet Camden, who it seemed had been married to both men and women of prodigious numbers - nearly two dozen brides, and that number again of young nubile boys who formed his 'spirit-lovers'. A matter which, to be frank, had set my stomach to turning, though I still tried to do my best not to judge the iniquities of the savage in unfair terms. There were certainly plenty of children, most under the age of ten, both from the clan of Camden and the various kinship groups which had inhabited Sariah.

Lord-Commander Blackblade harrumphed as the bloodied man was dragged out of the command tent. From behind his camp-desk he leveled a gaze at me.

"Do you have more you wish to question? I think it is clear this is a fruitless endeavor. We'll just have to hunt down this coward the old fashioned way."

I rose, stretching out my spine with a satisfying crack, before sinking into my own chair once more and shrugging broadly.

"I'll let Aviana continue speaking to the captives, those which she adjudges potentially of value in terms of information. You never know when something could be useful. I merely regret mobilizing so many men for this venture."

I did, and thankfully Gershwin let the matter drop into quiet. It had been my insistence that a man out of time would be a deadly foe which had sent two thousand men marching out into the frozen wilderness, where perhaps a quarter of that number would have more than sufficed to put down the armed resistance we had seen thus far. I had regrets now, to be sure, but part of me kept on trying to justify my initial assumptions. After all, news from this far west along the Alps was subject to exaggeration, and obscurity. A man like Isaac might have easily resisted a smaller force with bloody results. But not all men were like the ex-Sevrant of Icedonia.

Thank goodness for that.
Quite the unofficial fellow. Former P2TM Mentor specializing in faction and nation RPs, as well as RPGs. Always happy to help.

User avatar
Posts: 2737
Founded: Mar 07, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Saxony-Brandenburg » Mon May 30, 2022 1:46 pm

2964 BCE

“The world we inhabit, my subjects, is a careful balance. A balance between two cosmic forces, which, when disturbed, bring the collective ruin of all. Two Gods, Abzu and An, locked in this dance for all of time. Like Lord An, it is my duty to build the stone wall which separates the ordered world from the tides of chaos which engulf it. To guard the periphery of civilization from barbarism. Ever since the unrepentant heathens of Ur usurped my father’s throne, breaking the line of kings stretching back to the gods themselves, this balance has been tipped. The waters of chaos have breached hold into An’s ordered kingdom, and with it, misery has gripped Kengir and her people. Though within the walls of Uruk we have peace, within our hinterlands and villages is an infestation of criminality and instability. Thus have I gathered you all here today, my loyal subjects. To council me in this tumultuous time on what might be done. How I should bring order to my subjects not merely within this royal city, but my subjects who do not fall beneath our gaze. That upon their livelihoods and labor may be built a kingdom which may once again restore balance across all of Kengir. To return the rightful line of kings to their position above all the four corners, and that in doing so, may peace, prosperity, and piety return to her people. You may come forward now, and address your Lord with your advisory.” When the Lord had finished speaking, he returned his arms outstretched to his side, and, with a slight tremble of the lip from his tired bones, rested upon his throne. His fingers wrapped loosely around the ivory tips of the rests, his body perched upon the seat, leaned forward, looking down upon those below the dias. A hand reaches over from beside him. A woman’s hand, with long slender fingers wraps around his wrist. He casts a gaze over at it for a moment, before he flicks his eyes back down to his subjects standing below him.

A sexless man, with bald head and little hair upon his face bowed before his king. What little he had was scratched across his arms and chest, which was well oiled and clean. His eyes, cast low upon the stone steps, were marked beneath with black Kohl. Before he spoke, all would know his voice was soft, effeminate. The voice of a eunuch. The voice of a scribe.

“My lord.” He began, his words flowing from his scholarly tongue like velvet. “I come from the college of scribes of An, who account loyally for your temple’s grain, and, too, wish to bring order to your holy Kingdom. That, in doing so, we may better account for and feed your subjects their daily bread. If you will allow me, I would dare propose an agenda for the rendering of your justice to the wicked.”

The King’s brow curled, and his lip trembled as if about to smirk, though as a womanly hand carefully squeezed his wrist, he stilled. “Then speak, loyal scribe. What do the wise men of Uruk advise?”

The scribe lowered himself again, gracefully. He was thin and nimble, his supplication was closer to a dance than a bow. “My lord, as it is your Justice is supreme, and your word is law. All law comes from you, for you are supreme in all authority, speaker for the gods. Yet it is just as true, that my lord simply does not have the time of day to sit upon every case of law, am I not correct? For though your word is inscribed and written, we continue to place even minor cases before your court as judgement, when your word has already been known! This is not only inefficient, but a drag on my Lord’s honor to have to deal in the affairs of vile merchants is it not?”

The king was tense, his body quick to anger and of warm blood. He muttered to the servant: “It was not my request for you to advise me on my honor, scribe.” Yet as he did so, the pale lady beside him leaned into his ear, and whispered to him, petting his hand. He let out a sigh of patience then as she finally let go, and he, with cooling blood, waved that the man continue.

“Then, oh Lord, it is the recommendation of your loyal scribes that you give within our department the power to render law as you have spoken. That, with the hundreds of recorded laws of you and your father, and his father and his father, we can judge those who are too low a criminal to be worthy of your time. Not to make law, but simply to echo the words of our king. To let their judgements past be rendered without interrupting your time better spent running the affairs of state.” The man let out another long and elegant bow, before returning to those huddled scholars within the crowd.

The king let out a little grumble, but then nodded. “I thank the college of scribes then, for their advice. I am sure they would be… helpful, no doubt, in settling matters among the merchants and numbering types. I will take their suggestion into account when I deliberate these things.” He tapped his fingers upon the arm of his chair, strumming it as he stroked his oily beard for a moment, before he added: “Let the next man who wishes to advise his king come forward.”

Then stepped forward a man of petty tyranny. The way he talked with a vulgar accent, yet with over pronounced, harsh noises which came from only looking to seem far more grand than he really was. His arms hung with jewelry which, to the average man may look splendorous, yet to those with enough taste are clearly faked. Copper leaf over wood, most likely, instead of pure metal. His robes dyed with faded and common colors like mustard seed brown and yellow. His hair was well kempt, brushed and braided. Clearly he was a man of means who nonetheless wished to mimic a royal status that he simply did not grasp at. The kind of man who wished to assimilate into powerful circles, but who could only be a servant of them. “Oh noble king…” He began, bowing very little. Little more than a short nod of the head, the beads upon his braids clicking together as they rattled about. “While your scribe speaks clearly with good words, I believe he is wrong in his assertion that the wise men of Uruk should judge those criminal among your agricultural servants.”

Already tense from the previous counter, it seemed to take all the strength of this mighty king to not burst from this prattling. The way he tried so hard to sound smarter than he was. It was infuriating. The Lord raised a hand to his brow, and rubbed his forehead, trying to ease the pain that came from petty middle men. He ran his hand through his long curls of hair, pulling a handful down from the circlet which secured them behind his head.

“If it would behoove you lord, it should not be those of less noble birth who judge the criminals of your hinterlands, but the landowning headmen of the villages themselves. Empower us to solve law and disputes among our clansmen and bondsmen, and we will surely provide peace for you.” He gave another nod, and stepped back a few paces to retire the post.

Yet it seemed his audience would not end as the annoying supplicant wished, for the king lowered his hand from his forehead then, and placed it upon the arm of his chair. “I should wish to appease my landowning subjects by giving them the power of law? The sacred status as speaker of judgement? What of anything should come of it but arbitrary judgement? Increasing fragmentation of my realm as petty tyrants like yourself seek to manage each of their fiefdoms under their own law?”

The man, startled by this antagonism so openly when receiving his advice, stuttered. “But-but my lord! Surely this will bring law and order to your lands! By a judge in every village you will no longer need to worry of bringing them into your jurisdiction in Ur!”

“A chaotic one at that!” Snapped back the Lord. “You would have a chaotic order, an ordered chaos! Petty landowning families fighting over whose border ends where. An end to the very civilization which a heavenly kingdom brings. No. All law is vested within me, and should you challenge such a notion, I will have no issue with revoking every ounce of authority you so pride yourself in holding! Nay, any rule of law I invest in any subject will be solely to echo my words.” And with the wave of his hand he pushed the man away, with shame as all the court stared at him, shuffling back into the crowd. “Now, does anyone else have a proposal for their Lord-King? Any man wise enough to give me good council, and not self promoting drivel?”

Since in the court. The mouths of dozens of men remained shut, as to not risk the embarrassment of being verbally castrated before your peers. That was, until a tap was felt on the King’s shoulders. He turned to his side, to see the woman he was wedded to, who sat below him, whisper up at him. Another flick of his gaze towards the empty space before the Dias, and he shrugged. With a nod of agreement, the woman stood, and made her way down the steps.

A woman of foreign born then stood before her Lord and husband, with the long flowing feather-tuft dress of true wealth. She took from her head a crown of gold flowers, and upon her knees knelt before the Lord. She bowed low, her head reaching the floor, prostrated before him, before sitting back upon her knees. “My noblest Lord and master, if you will let a woman of some wisdom speak on this matter, I would be honored to give my council.”

“You may speak then, love. Choose your words though as to not dishonor your reputation before the court.” He spoke down to her with a kind of loving condescension.

“My lord, though the adjudication of your word and law is surely a noble cause, I do not believe it is this which will aid you in the cause you seek to champion. For you have order where your justice is present, even if it is stretched thin. You have a city, Uruk, which is strong and well governed. It is not in the dilution of your powers that you will find order, though for efficiency's sake it may be worth listening to your scribe’s council. No, it is with where that law is projected, how far the rule of law emanates from these halls of Uruk, that will bring order to your realm. It is not enough to vest more individuals with the power to judge, but in the vestment of those to bring that justice out farther than the wind may carry your words. To put another way, a dedicated group of slaves to enforce your law. To protect your hinterlands from hostile raids and attacks from rivals and barbarians alike. To capture criminals and protect your royal caravans. To enforce the paying of taxes and tithings to your temples. To bring those who have done wrong back to whom you vest the power of law. This cannot so simply be done as it is within the walls of Uruk with simple guardsmen and watch. For a man on foot is not quick enough to protect your villages when in danger. And for your nobles, who drive fast chariots, it would be unbecoming of them to risk their lives daily against those who challenge your peace. Thus do I suggest to you, Lord, as foremost lady among the Shari’i, that you grant a contingent of the noblest among them with such powers. For they ride camels swiftly and are adaptable, proficient warriors. They are flexible and strong in single combat. They would surely be willing subjects to enforce your laws, should you only trade their service in exchange for a tax reprieve, as compensation.”

The king seemed amused, as if proud he could own a wife who speaks so clearly. He nodded, and seemed genuinely warm to this third proposal. “Finally.” He sighed. “A woman’s council gives for me something to listen to sweetly. Which does not challenge my honor or my power. Tell me more then, Inanna, since while this is a good idea, there are still flaws which must be ironed out.”

“Speak them to me my Lord Jushur, and I may be able to answer you with wisdom and secure my council as effective.” She stated humbly.

“If the Shari’i guards are to enforce my laws, what shall distinguish those of good merit from any other? How will my people know these are respectable officers of my law, and not vagabonds who have kidnapped their neighbors for more villainous purposes?”

“I would suggest, my lord, that just as you hold regalia of your status, that you should equip them with the regalia of their own. Give to them a bundle of reeds tied in leather straps, and seal it with a wax stamp of the royal seal. By that they will know their power comes from you and you alone my lord. And whenever they are recruited for this duty they will be issued these, to beat and enforce your laws without lethal force, that the villains may be brought back whole and alive to seek justice.”

“And they shall return it when their duty ends, and they retire to their fields?”

“Yes, my lord. As to surrender their authority back to you.”

“I find this wholly reasonable. For we do not yet depend upon their farming to feed our people, it would not be destructive to dedicate these clansmen to this purpose. Does anyone in the court observance object to my Lady’s statement?”

He looked up, and gazed upon his onlookers. Tight lipped since she began to spoke, they offered nothing more to return his question. And so the Lady chimed in, responding to the silent air. “My lord, should you do such a thing, and commit to justice being returned, and security being brought to your most farthest subject’s farms, I have no doubt that history will remember your name. And all the people of Kengir who head your laws and are brought to peace with their wisdom will call you: “Jushur the Lawgiver”. And with their peace will come prosperity, and with their prosperity will come a strong and prestigious Uruk which may once again rise to its onceheld status. That the Lord of Uruk may reclaim his rulership over the four corners of the world, and return the cosmic balance An and Abzu to the cosmos.

Weeks later, two men in black robes bow before their Lord in his hallowed hall. They are Shari’i, those who carry with them the bundled reeds of his lawful border guards. They supplicate before him upon their knees, and touch their heads to the ground below the Dias before they speak. Behind them, a strange pile of goods lays in the chamber. One which all look upon with confusion.

“What is this meaning of this?!” Asks the sexless Vizir to his king. “What have you brought into your Lord’s hall, that you, mere guardsmen, hold his audience for?”

“My mighty lord.” Answers the Shari’i man, who, standing up with his head still bowed, dramatically motions towards the pile behind him. “We, your loyal tribesmen, have brought for you proper tribute from our latest raid.”

“Raid?!” The Vizir seems shocked. He looks between the silent king and the warriors, astounded. “WHO did you raid? What did you do? Barbarians - Black heads do not raid, we exact tribute! This is no civilized an act!”

“My noble lord.” The other says, speaking past the Vizir. “We accosted a caravan of your impious enemies in Ur, who traveled within the borders of your territory. When we learned of their masters, we promptly took from them their precious goods and cargo, and nobly returned them from whence they came. Thus we have come to present to you directly what has been captured, your due as our headman.”

The Vizir looked to his king, furious. “My lord!” He said with great drama, aghast. “These men wish to seek war with the city of Ur! Surely this is worthy of severe punishment. For these acts could surely be just cause for their armies to assault Uruk, and return conflict to your peaceful reign!”

Their silent Lord, with square jaw moving softly as he thought, his forehead wrinkled with consideration, was silent for a moment, as both sides stared at him. Finally, a single word came from his lips, strong and well thought. “No.”

“No, my lord?” The Vizir asked. “Surely you are right, no this is not good act, we must apologize immediately!”

“NO. Niggina. You pre-empt my judgement with your own.” He cast his gaze down to his tribal vassals, who looked up at him like proud hunting dogs. “You have done for me a service this day, and have done well.”

“But my lord! How can you say such a thing! It is not even the campaigning season, and we will severely disturb the harvest should this provoke a war!”

“I am aware of that Niggina. Yet so would it for their own. No, should the men of Ur retaliate, they too will have to wait until the planting season is over to attack. In the meantime, I will have you continue your raids against the men of Ur. You are right that this will cause grounds for war, but what has the past three years of my reign been but preparation for war with Ur?! They dared not martial troops against Uruk when we cut off our tribute to them. They had been biding their time, reinforcing their numbers, cutting their losses, stopping their bleeding. Yet we hold the upper hand which they are unaware of. The Shari’i we command in great numbers, and will be a decisive piece upon the battlefield. Should we bait the men of Ur into an open pitched battle, I am certain we will be able to defeat them. For what is the alternative? We wait another few years for their armies to be re-bolstered, their next crop of children to recover their numbers from the plague?! For more time to collect arms and armor? To have to assault their forces upon their territory - and face the challenge of a siege against a prepared opponent? No, the longer we wait, the less advantage we will have. We will start a war now when we can win decisively, push them to do something unwise. To attempt to punish us for these acts, we will be able to sally forth and meet them upon familiar grounds. There, we will crush them - and follow their fleeing cowards back home to Ur! There are times for wise caution and times for brave action, and I will not mistake one for another!” The Lord looked down upon his subjects, awed at his so bold a response. “You have my blessing, continue these raids. Wreak havoc my men, and let loose the hounds of war!”
"When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?"

User avatar
Islamic Holy Sites
Posts: 8288
Founded: Mar 20, 2021
Authoritarian Democracy

Postby Islamic Holy Sites » Tue May 31, 2022 2:12 am

A boy on a pony galloped to the town, shoving tablets of clay with writing and drawings on it to the stunned inhabitants. “Join the new town, near the river!” he cried. “No taxes! No money problems! A guaranteed home and nourishment for the rest of your life!” This small boy, nine years old, (Utu) did not realise that this was not what Ali meant in “recruiting members to the community”. He had spent hours carefully carving out words and drawings and Ali did not have the heart to stop him. In fact, Ali was lurking near the city with a dagger and a sling in case things went badly. “Builders, people who can work with stone and sword trainers needed especially!” called out the happy child. People stared at him like he was mad. After a few minutes, he noticed. “What?” he whispered. People chuckled and went about their business. Ali appeared and dragged his friend outside the town boundaries. “You did very well,” Ali told the child. “But you must do it this way.” Ali sneaked around until he found someone with ragged clothes, begging but receiving nothing. He did not seem to have any disability. Ali approached him. “Sir,” he began respectfully. “Would you be interested in joining a community where money is not important, where food is given according to your needs and where a liveable life can happen? Where you are assigned a role and you have no fear of beatings or death?”
“Of course,” croaked the man. “But this fantasy you are describing does not exist.”
“I am working on making it a reality,” replied Ali. “Do you want to come? Just to see?”
“Fine,” conceded the man, more out of desperation than anything else. “I shall see.”

The man decided to stay for a week. But now he was asleep in one of the huts. It was the middle of the night. A branch snapped. No one rose from their slumber. More sound, more murmuring. Someone said: “We’re there!” Ali jumped to his feet. “Show yourselves!” he cried, drawing his khopesh. A few people revealed themselves. “We are slaves,” they admitted. “From the town. We fled this night. We wouldn’t have dared, but you say that you are building a free town.” One of them looked at the huts. “Didn’t think it would be so.. marshy, though..” one of them mused. “And when you said ‘houses’, I didn’t think you meant ‘huts’.” As Ali turned bright red, two guards, clad in armour, stomped through the bush they were hiding behind and pointed their spears at the slaves. “What have we got here?” chuckled one. “Our lucky day. We get a pay rise and a bit of excitement. Have you got any idea how boring it was in the town? Standing in the sun, doing nothing?” The second grinned and pointed at the slaves. “You are coming with us.” Then he pointed at Ali. “You as well.” As Ali stuttered, trying to explain, a rock whizzed past his head. Into Guard Number One’s nose. Utu, holding a sling, pumped his fist. “One down!” he cried. The guard, now with a bloody nose, surged forwards, trying to grab Utu, then got another rock, this time in his eye. He screamed so loudly that the rest of the village woke up. “What’s happening?” called one of the old women. “You,” snarled Guard Number Two, “are all coming with me.”
Ali swung his Khopesh at his head, but it clanged uselessly against the guard’s helmet. The guard stabbed with his spear, and Ali could only just deflect the blow. This was a trained warrior he was up against. Meanwhile, Guard Number One recieved another rock in the face. He grunted and rushed forwards towards Utu, held his spear up, stabbed.. then one of the old women threw herself between the spear and Utu’s heart. She was killed instantly. Ali turned around to see the source of the commotion. A mistake. The guard was about to stab, but he forgot about the slaves. One of them barrelled into his legs, knocking him over and making him drop his spear. The slave then picked up the spear and buried it in the guard’s neck.

The guard attempted to shake the old woman off his spear, with no success. Ali, blood boiling with rage and grief struck his sword into the man’s face. He keeled over, dead. “Now,” Ali thought, “I shall be wanted for murder in the town. What a waste.” He looked at the woman again. Tears spilled from his eyes. “A waste. A waste.”
Call me Muqaddasia.
Proud member of the GCN. Host nation of SETZA. Founder/Co-founder of the (now defunct) IDSF Founder/Co-founder and first in command of the (now defunct) UCA. Founder of the (now defunct) ICRD.
BREAKING NEWS: Galapagos war 4 might be coming | “Aursi among best Muqaddasi allies,”, says government official | Muqaddasi weapon industry expanding WIP

User avatar
Empire of Techkotal
Chargé d'Affaires
Posts: 400
Founded: Apr 09, 2020
Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Empire of Techkotal » Thu Jun 02, 2022 7:40 am


Back at the village, Obashku and I walked towards his hut. There Obashku gave me a woven basket.

"Lets go back and collect some clay samples Alfred" said Obashku.

"Ok, but when will we be able to make pottery?" Was my question. I mean I know, that some types of clay can be used immediately, but most have to treated first before using them.

"We will collect some of the red clay you saw at the river and some lower quality ones. My wife and kids will show you what we do with them. I still have a few things to do once we are back" said Obashku.

We both went back to the river. Through the open fields of rice and down to the riverbed. There I collected some of the reddish clay, which was easy to form and Obashku took some sandy clay. With this small harvest of clay we went back to the village. After pointing out to where I would find his wife and children, Obashku parted from me and went to a group of young men and teenagers.

I myself followed the directions he had told me. Along the muddy ground towards the big hut from his brother and then left towards a small bush. From there on I went through a small herd of boar like animals towards a pond. At which many of the children were playing. Their mothers only a few meters away from them. Here I find Obashku's wife. She sat there chatting with the other local women.

As I approached they turned to me and asked: "What do you want stranger?"

I showed them the basket with the clay and told them what Obashku told me to find them for help. Obashkus wife sighed and asked one of the elderly women, if she wanted to help me in her stead. The old women only stood up and showed me the way. We went towards a small mud oven. There were to big flat stones next to the oven and a pot filled with water.

"My name is Wasa. Whats your name stranger?" Said the elderly.

I immediately told her my name and asked what I should do next.

She looked at the basket and took the reddish clay out. Laying it to the side and then taking the sandy clay out.

"The red one is good and I shall show you later how we make pottery out of it in our village. This one is rather bad. We have to wait for it to dry first. But thankfully the children bring clay every day. Could you call them over?" Said Wasa.

"Of course I can. I'll be right back" I said and went to the children. "Wasa has called for you."

The children were not happy, that I had disturbed them during their playtime, but they went along with me to Wasa.

"Here is the finished clay children. You can start to make your pottery." Then she pointed on one of them "Otku collect some dry wood with your brother."

"Now Alfred take this dry clay here and grind it with these two stones, while I distribute the clay, that has already been prepared and don't stop grinding that clay until I'm back." And with these words Wasa took a pot filled with dry clay and gave every child a bit.

They then formed small hills out of it and made a hole in the middle. There they poured water in and then mixed it all together. They would continue to knead it until they were satisfied with it. All while I had to grind the clay Wasa gave me. Then Wasa told me to stop and I had to fill the pot she had just emptied with the fine clay. Afterwards she took my reddish clay and parted it in two. Taking half for herself before giving the rest to me.

"Now lets form the clay together children" said Wasa "Lets start by making a small bowl. Now make that bowl bigger and smooth its surface."

After everyone had successfully made a bowl she took one bowl after another and corrected the mistakes of the children, while smoothing the surface.

"Now lay them to the side and help Otku and his brother with the wood" said Wasa.

The children ran to the woods and I followed behind. There Otku and his brother had already collected a fair bit of dry wood, but it seemed like we need a lot more. So I had to scour the ground for dry sticks or dead branches. After probably searching around for half an hour I had my arms full with wood and returned with the children to elder Wasa.

"Now Otku please create a fire and show this stranger how its done."

Otku took made a small fire with dry fibers and two sticks. And even after imitating him I couldn't make a fire, which made the children and Wasa laugh.

"Now give me some the pottery children" Wasa said.

The children tried to be the first ones to have their pottery burned and quarreled among each other who could go first until an order had been decided. With me being the last. Wasa then took the pottery and positioned it inside. One after another putting them in through the top.

Then Otku and Wasa piled small dry branches on the fire and with time increased the size of the branches. At last Otku put a a stone on top of the oven to block most of the heat with just enough room for ventilation.

"Now Alfred you and Otku will keep the fire going until I come back. If something goes wrong Otku knows what to do." Said Wasa and left with the other children. Slowly walking back to the pond there the children told their mothers about what they had just done. After several hours she came back and told us to stop.

"We will see the results of our work tomorrow. Now Otku your mother is waiting and you shouldn't let her wait any longer. And you stranger you should also go back into your hut. You will need the rest for tomorrow beacause the Chief, Obashku's Brother will come back."

User avatar
Posts: 2737
Founded: Mar 07, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Saxony-Brandenburg » Mon Jun 06, 2022 10:46 pm

2964 BCE

Two moons pass by, and with them the agricultural cycle of life continues. The muddy banks of the two rivers, their floodwaters receded, becoming rich with silt and debris. Riches which fertilized her soil and ripen it for weary farmers to plant the next harvest within. Two moons pass from the Lord’s first pronouncement that war should be made with the people of Ur. That he should charge his subjects with looting and terrorizing their border settlements and subjects, until such a time as they strike back. That the people of Uruk complete their duties to the earth, before the time in which they will soak it with blood. Seeds buried deep in the ground, are then left to fester while their farmers dawn their arms and armor. The planting season ends. The season for warmaking begins.

And so, they made ready for war.

The warm summer air holds the land in its vice grip. Thick, chock-full of dust, moisture, and fear. It comes from the south-east, from the great southern sea. From the land of Ur, it blows towards Uruk. Enlil watches upon his chariot of wind. Enlil heralds the coming of their enemies. They come en masse, large columns of men under arms. In the black-headed style they are many, led first by their noblemen upon their chariots. Their spearpoints glimmer in the midday light, held aloft as a forest of deadly trees. Their reed and wicker shields are massive, and cast long shadows behind them as they march. They shadow the dust-clouds kicked up under foot and under hoof. Their sandals dig into the dirt roads along the march. Hob-nailed with foreign metal, a practice given to them by a foreign king. They must be, for their bodies are too heavy for mere leather. Upon their shoulders is too much weight, not from fat, in which they have little. Their shoulders and torsos, their black-heads and their backs, are covered in gleaming metal. It is hot, it is sharp, it digs into their skin. It rubs their joints raw. It covers their bodies in sweat underneath the oppressive sun. More metal than man, just as befits their reputation in Ur. Some of them carry crosses on their necks. Some carry seven-pointed stars. They both mean the same thing. He is seven. He is one. The God of the Axumites. The god of Ur. And so they march, and pray to their foreign god. As they march into the land of their ancient adversary.

The walls of Uruk greet them, as the men of Ur approach their rival city. Its doors remain defiantly shut as the men of Ur encamp upon the horizon. The people unfortunate enough not to make it inside the city before the dawn shut themselves up inside their homes. They barricade their doors, and snuff out their fires. They hope that, to not draw attention to oneself will spare them the enemy’s wrath. Like ants underfoot, one might evade death by total insignificance.

Galloping upon the wind, a rider, with great ostrich feather plumes upon his gleaming bronze helmet, drives his cart towards the gates of Uruk. He leads a team of three black poneys, who powerfully drive their master across the earth. They kick up from their hooves an immense cloud of dust behind him, blinding all in its wake, making all before him aware. He does not seem apprehensive of the threat of death as he comes within the range of slings and arrows. None comes to greet him as he rides right up to those immense doors, made of ships-wood. Yet hundreds of ears are open, and dozens of eyes look down upon him from the walls, as they hear him speak.

“O’ people of Uruk! O’ people of Uruk! Hear me, hear the words of my master! I speak for the Holy Queen of the Four Corners, beloved of the Seven who are One. Ruler of the known world, Goddess among men! Your lady and master, to whom you have transgressed against! Ur-Surtur, your mistress, has ordered you to open your doors! To allow her armies to pass into your gates, and allow them to bring to justice her most unruly vassals. Ones which she has given a DROP of clemency to, and has responded with treason! Your Lord, Jushur, must pay for his crimes! Open these doors immediately, and hand over the traitor, or else feel the wrath of Ur upon you once more! Remember what was done to your city whence we first sacked it, and burned to the ground your holy things in the name of the Seven! Remember how your mothers wailed, and your wives threw themselves into the river to avoid the shame of our men! Submit to your EMPRESS yet, or face again this tide of blood to flow from your veins!” He circled back, as if to demand a response, chanting once more: “Open the gates! Open the gates you wretched dogs!”

And finally, his calls were answered.

A sharp whistle came from up high. The messenger raised his head, to see an arrow coming straight for him. It arced up into the sky, before descending in its sharp plummet towards the earth. It screamed at him, like a hawk’s shrill cry as it descended. It pained his ears, and startled his ponies - who began to thrash about - jerking him aside in enough time to see the arrow strike the ground. It bounced up upon the earth, before clattering to its side. It seemed this was a message enough, there would be war.

And as the messenger turned his war cart around to leave, he saw over his shoulder as the mighty gates of Uruk opened. And to face him, was another forest of spears and shields announcing their intentions. Not a siege, but a battle upon the field before their city. With the wind, he rode swiftly back to his masters, who, upon the horizon, could guess their enemies' intent.

The earth would once again be stained red with blood on this day. And the vultures would feast upon man’s carrion.

The men of Uruk emerge from their stone castle, an equally grand force to oppose their sworn enemies. They too carry spears and wicker shields as in the fashion of their enemies. They carry slings and bows, and march in the square columns of traditional warfare. Their nobles ride upon fine chariots, wearing the brightly colored robes of their status. Yet among their ranks does not shimmer in the sun the same bright plates of bronze and copper. They are clothed in more wool and linen than metal. Though they do not sweat or suffer beneath the sun, a deep feeling of vulnerability is shared as they wonder, will the past not happen again? With spirits high, some still doubt if they can overcome the men of Ur. Strangest still however, emerges from behind them all. The men of Ur, who gaze upon their foe who sallies forth from their walls, a massing number of men upon the backs of laboring beasts. Some come from the north, the rural villages of Uruk, who begin to ready themselves upon the flanks of their army. Others come from within the walls of Uruk herself, and join their pastoral comrades upon the formation. So queer, that men of this type are thusfar uncommon among traditional warfare. They appear as barbarians, people of the Aria who fight like devils. An equal sense of unease fills the ranks of the men of Ur. For these barbarian camel-back riders carry long lances, and strange curved bows unlike any seen in Kengir. Perhaps, they are the creators of the arrows which scream like eagles. And whence enough of them had arrived, a shrill scream echoes throughout their ranks. Vibrating, piercing, it wails from the lungs. The sounds of both men and women fighters amongst their mass. Men’s gazes flick across them and wonder if they are not fighting jinn themselves.

Olivia Ingels

I look upon the fields before my new home, and I do not see a land made for war. It is a futile endeavor, to build homes, to plant crops, and think they will remain as they were. Peaceful, happy, full of life. Then we have to trample upon the crops we planted, splatter our fields with blood, to protect that very life. What a vicious cycle the gods have put us through. One which it seems, they will never relent from. Farasha, my dear elephant, in her eyes I see fear. I wonder if she knows exactly what is soon to happen, not to her, but to other feeling beings. I wonder if she knows that so many sons will soon be slain. I wonder if she can feel the weight of death in the air. I touch her leathery cheeks, and she wraps her great trunk around my arm. It is strong, a great slinking arm which grips tight upon my skin. “Pray to the gods of the elephants.” I whisper to her. “That your sons will never have to endure what man does to himself.”

I let go of her, letting her trunk uncurl like a snake from my arm. I turn to see those dozens of priestly attendants, exempt from the bloodletting, tasked to watch and perform the cushy rights of mysticism while they watch their brothers butcher each other. It sickens me, for it tastes like cowardice. But I look up at the sky, which turns muted browns, yellow and gray. I know the gods will soon be at war as well. From where I stand, upon the very entranceway to the city, where small altars have been erected years ago to concentrate her grounds, I watch as my husbands’ men march up and down the gentle slopes of the fields before us. I see my own Lord wave back to me upon his chariot. On how noble he looks, riding the largest poneys known to man. A great glittering chariot with spoked wheels. Unlike all those who surround him, sharp blades protrude from the sides, slicing into the air with bloodthirsty intention. I wonder if they will save him, or if the bronze plates upon his chest will. None of this is certain.

What is certain, however, is what I may do to aid him. For I am no fighter, I never have been one. My arms are not thick with muscle, and my wrists are weak when they work with blades. My skin is soft and my hair is long. Not like the tribeswomen who ride alongside their husbands. The war I must fight is religious. It is a matter of begging for the gods’ granted boon. I pray it will come.

I see them stop, perhaps a hundred yards down into the fields. It is reedy and marshy upon their left flank, while on the right small hills begin to emerge from the dust and sand. Clusters of homes, of mud and thatch, dot the landscape for miles. Fields of trees and freshly planted grain crosses the space between the two armies. I let out a sigh, and look up to the sky. The realm of the gods, where their wars rage on, and where their messages are delivered. The men of the temple of An, and the girls of Inanna, cluster around me. They have brought out the stone of Inanna, and placed it upon the ground. Such a holy relic, it shimmers and glistens with anointed oils upon the sunlight. As they turn their heads, the men of Uruk can see it there, glowing with a heavenly aura. I wonder if they feel a sense of divine presence upon this rock from outer space. I certainly do. Yet as I turn my eyes back to the sky- I see them there. Circling, high above, a hawk rides the waves of the wind. Perhaps, Inanna, with hawk’s talons upon her feet, watches through those eyes. That she will fight alongside the people who have named their queen after her, and dedicated her as patron of their people. It is a sign, sure enough, that at least someone above is watching.

“A sacred bird flies overhead, from the east towards the west. Its shadow drifts across the field of battle.” I announce to those all around. “Mark it within your readings, as a sign of divine presence and judgment.”

With a dozen nods, I hear styluses quickly scratch upon clay tablets. The gasping bleats of a goat dragged forcefully towards us. Soon to be slaughtered. I look upon its alien eyes, full of fear. I shake my head, for this petty murder is ritual. I have done it before every battle I have ever seen my friends succeed upon. To deny it now would be blasphemy, or worse, manslaughter. I walk over to the girl restraining it, and bend over to pick the poor thing up. It kicks and screams as I place it upon the table, and with cold force bind its legs together with the rope around its neck, that its own thrashing chokes the creature enough to still itself. “Oh, gentle thing. You have harmed none within your life.” I whisper down to it, stroking the scared animal’s head. “Your sacrifice is not in vain, for even you have a master, the Lord upon the land that you and your kinsfolk graze. For even as this knife which I hold will shed your blood, your entrails will predict for wise men the course of battle. And upon the reading of these, they will protect your fields and meadows for countless generations more goats to come.”

The knife is sharp, the cut is quick upon the back of the head. Even as I sever the spine, I feel the body kick and thrash with a final burst of death defying energy. But even this is not enough, and as I hold it down, the goat suffers to its end.

It’s stomach is fat and bulging from years of grazing. I make quick work of the butchering, a science I’ve practiced for the past ten years of war I’ve seen. Insert the blade into the chest, between the ribs, and begin to carve down. Blood flows out upon the table, it spurts and stains my arms and hands. The consequence of taking a life. The more I carve, the more flows out with less force, until at last I can begin to see inside. I count the ribs, see which comes out first. All these have been shown to predict the future. Strange, that at first I cannot find the heart no matter how hard I dig. At first I think I have reached my hand in the wrong place, yet soon I find the reason. A thick layer of fat and tissue, which must be the result of some disease, has encased the area, squeezing against the heart and lungs. The poor thing wouldn’t have had long to live even without my blade. What sickens me more though, is how much I am forced to tear and pull living flesh apart to reach its heart. By the time I manage to wrench it from the lifeless beating carcas, my hands are cut up and nails scratched by bone and tissue. My head feels light, my stomach churns. Not from the gruesome work, but upon a premonition of what this may mean. I look to my left and right, the girls who brought the goat shocked and appalled by their lady, covered in blood, staring back at them with a look of woe. “The heart beats no more, the enemy is vanquished. The birds point to divine favor to cause this victory, but… much suffering must be endured. The battle will not be decisive. No… we must suffer much to defeat the armies of Ur.”

And as I turned my head to look over my shoulders, the men of An’s temple, who heard these words, looked pleadingly for what to do. I sighed, and began to wipe my bloodied arms off with a white cloth. “Tell the men that the gods favor their victory, and to not delay. To face their enemy with full confidence and force. That is the only means where they’ll be granted Inanna’s boon today.”

It is a half-baked prophecy that even I must have faith in. For, without such naive belief what should I do but weep and pray?

Between two groves of palm trees, an irrigation ditch flows from the mighty river. Diverted, flooding the area with its rich waters. The earth is muddy and damp all around, plowed and watered fields turn to muck underfoot. The two armies stand upon either side of this ditch, just out of range of each other's arrows and bullets. Few try to reach desperate shots across the field towards one another. Neither side lands their mark. Each rests their hands until they may approach closer. From behind the men of Uruk, commotion sounds. The banging of drums, the sounding of horns. A great beast thunders its trunk, as their holy men call out to them. “The gods are with Jushur!” They pronounce. “Inanna watches from the sky!”

The wary men, desperate for assurance against their better armed foes, take to this as well as they can. Cheers erupt from across their numbers, one and a half thousand men fill their lungs with air, and shout towards their enemies. Their screams thunder back, as soon their enemies begin to rival their sound. The shouting match lasts until their throats can no longer speak, and their cries dampen into stillness. There is a pause, which silently begins to melt away. Quiet clacking of sticks and fits upon their chests and breastplates grows once again louder and louder like a horse's hooves upon the ground! The army of Uruk, at her center, begins to open up. Like the parted seas, a chariot rides through their ranks. Three white poneys emerge from their mass, and gallop through the field before them. No arrow meets him, though the bows of the men of Ur ready themselves with notched arrows. The rider approaches the channel which divides the fields. He rides all the way up upon its shores, before stepping off of the cart. He hands the reins to the secondary driver, who circles back several yards behind the man. Over the ditch, and onto the ground staked by the men of Ur, the prince of Uruk raises his fists into the sky. In one hand, he holds a round shield of gleaming bronze. It shimmers in the sunlight, polished to a mirror. In the other he holds an axe, a massive one. The head is the size of his own head, the handle as thick as his arm. Sweat gleams off his bulging muscles, the beast of a man roars like a lion! He holds his head up high, letting his long black beaded braids clack together as he shakes his head. “Men of Ur!” He shouts, banging his axe upon his shield, echoing like thunder across the field. “I am Gilgamesh! Hear me now!” A godlike being stands there, waving his arms about like a starving lion, ready to consume any who comes towards him. “I bare the axe of Dimuzid, my grandfather, who you had so brutally murdered! I wear the crown of Uruk’s royalty! I hold in my veins the blood of the gods! Hear me now, or be made to suffer!”

Silence is his reply, as the gleaming, oiled man’s request is made. Even the enemies of Uruk do not take their eyes from him.

“I challenge your noblest men to single combat! I challenge them here, upon the land of my city! I will not spare myself the shame of living defeat! Come and kill me now, if you are men of hot blood! If you are not diseased dogs, then come and face me! Come and kill the prince of Uruk!”

What maddening bravery compels a man, who is not obligated to stand in the front ranks of his comrades, to bare himself out before his enemies, and demand to fight to the death, with no aid from amongst his brothers? Perhaps it is hatred, perhaps it is possession. Yet either way, the fear grips the hearts of the enemies who face him. Yet foolish bravery is not only to come from Uruk’s loons. From amongst the armies of Ur, a massive man of brown skin, and black, thick hair emerges. He wears full plates of bronze upon his shoulders, he carries an oval wooden shield, and sky-metal shortsword of a foreign land. He calmly marches down the field towards his foe, his sword rhythmically slapping against the side of his shield. He grins wickedly at Gilgamesh, who scowles at his foe.

“I am the man who is to face you, prince of Uruk.”

The demigod snarls, and points his axe towards the champion of Ur. “And who is the man that is to face me?”

“Huwawa, the prince of Ur faces you Gilgamesh! I, son of Ur-Surtur, holder of the Seven’s blessed blade! I have come to slay the enemies of my Mother, and bring terror to the dogs who wish to disrupt her rule! You may call me Huwawa the terrible, Gilgamesh of Uruk, for I will terrorize your people to no end for their insolence! They will not rest until they lay in the shade of the underworld, and then perhaps peace may finally reign within Kengir.”

Gilgamesh, with gleaming axe raised into the sky, aims it towards the prince of Ur. “Then I will fight you and slay you, Huwawa, or else let me be struck down where I stand! I bear the axe of my grandfather, who was granted it by lady Inanna herself! Make no mistake, for there is nowhere under An for you to flee to once you are defeated. And none to which I will flee to. I shall slay you, prince, and keep your skull as a trophy!”

The giant snarled and grinned, and beat his shield with the pommel of his sword. “So be it Gilgamesh. Come at me! And may you strike true and clean. Else it shall be the death of the prince of Uruk!”

With another lion’s roar, Gilgamesh pounded the earth with his feet. He threw himself across the field, and towards the giant facing him. Shield raised, axe close behind, he attacked head on with the full force and intent to strike. He did not stop to circle his enemy, he did not wait for the truest moment to swing. He, like a raging bull, struck his shield towards the giant. So surprised was his opponent by this move, that he barely had the moment to move as Gilgamesh struck him upon his shield-arm, feeling the momentum of all his body crash into the giant. His arm buckled, his wooden shield cracked with the force of pure bronze striking into it! Splinters stabbed into the giant prince’s arm, as he roared with pain!

Not letting himself be struck down, the prince’s feet dug deep into the dirt. With a scream of defiance, the giant threw his opponent from him, shoving with all his might from his bleeding arm. With the godlike madness of adrenaline, the pain seemed only to strengthen him, and with newfound beasties aggression threw himself towards Gilgamesh. The prince raised his bronze shield towards the giants’ sword, which hacked and slashed through the air towards the prince! With every missed strike, the lion of Uruk swung his axe towards his foe, cutting the air as the two traded blows unsuccessfully, until with another roar Gilgamesh shoved his foe from him, and the two stared at each other with venom leaking from their mouths, sweat beads glistening and dripping from their heads.

“You are a good fighter, I’ll give you that, giant of Ur.” Spoke the prince of Uruk, who pants like a dog, his chest heaving from labored breaths. “You are as strong as your name proceeds. But no such terror shall befall the city of Uruk- for you shall be dead before this day is done!”

“Brave words from a brave man, yet foolish as you, lion of Uruk. Let history tell of Gilgamesh, brave warrior of his city, who did not shy from death as he fell by my hands!”

The two beasts changed once more towards one another, their weapons high and ready to strike! Gilgamesh, with his lumbering, beastial strikes, wildly hacked towards the field of Huwawa, and with each strike which was powerful enough to take down trees, carved from the giant’s shield hunks of wood which splintered and fell in the wind. Yet Gilgamesh was just as careless as he was brave and wild, and in his maddening strikes, one after another, his shield did not protect his side. And the giant of Ur, seeing his chance, plunged his blade over and towards the neck of Gilgamesh! With a quick strike down, the blade scraped and tore against metal and bone, but did not strike into his flesh! Indeed, his arm stopped short of the neck of Gilgamesh, only tore at his skin and the straps of his breastplate! With a grunt of pain, Gilgamesh slammed his bronze shield once more against his attacker’s arm, feeling the metal connect against bone and flesh as the giant screamed in agony, staggering backwards in shock.

“Lucky man, your gods fight alongside you, heathen!” The Giant gasped through hard breaths, before, awesomely, the prince of Uruk grabbed his own arm, and with a horrible crackling sound, twisted it! That which was surely broken by Gilgamesh’s strike was once more set into place, and, moving his fingers, the giant grinned with devilish power. “What, did you think you had bested me yet?” Asked the giant, who, rolling his shoulders, assumed his stance once more. Not to let his enemy surprise him and capture the moment, Gilgamesh once more threw himself towards his foe! With great, sweeping strikes of his axe cutting side to side across his enemy- the giant, with only half a shield remaining upon his arm, struck Gilgamesh upon his hand! That giant, hairy paw which held tight the axe of Dimuzid, was forced to open with the force of ten tons, and through the air his axe did fly- far away from the two. Gilgamesh, his hand turning bright red, screamed with pain as now he stumbled back, and desperately defended against a hailstorm of sword strikes, hacking and slashing, the sound of metal scraping metal tearing at his ears, as he was forced backwards step after step!

“Give up boy!” The giant taunted. “You are disarmed! You are but a man now!”

With a snarl and a shake of his head, the Lion of Uruk planted his feet into the ground, and with a roar shoved back the prince of Ur with all his might, more bull than man, that inhuman force which seemed to have the gods’ own fist behind it! The giant Huwawa was sent reeling by the sheer force alone, stumbling backwards and, his massive frame dizzy and off balance, fell upon his back upon the ground!

“Do you feel my power yet Huwawa? Yelled Gilgamesh, his face bright red with anger. I am no man! I. AM. GILGAMESH!”

Now with his chance, Gilgamesh ran from his dazed foe to where his axe lay, gleaming in the sun, barely scratched by the hailstorm of bows upon it. He closed his sword hand, and with a face full of utter agony forced it to close with a great crack! He whimpered ever so quietly from the pain, and through pure maddening will turned back to face his foe, who had just enough time to stand before once more, Gilgamesh slammed his shield into him, knocking him backwards upon the ground! With each swing down at his foe, the Lion of Uruk growled, the force of the gods from above chipping away at his enemy’s resolve. His shield tattered into pieces, the Prince of Ur wildly swung his sword at the legs of Gilgamesh! And too blind with anger and rage was the prince, that he had not predicted this, and with one great strike the giant of Ur cut open the leg of Gilgamesh, splattering blood across his foe on the ground. With a gasp of shock, the prince’s leg shook as he felt the metal tear open his skin! Blinding agony forcing him to tremble as he tried to step back, his knee buckling as it tried to support him in vain. Falling to his knees, the Prince of Ur saw this opportunity and took it! He threw himself upon Gilgamesh, and tackled him to the ground! With a raised fist, the giant began to batter the prince’s helmet with his blows, seemingly immune to the pain as his knuckles were cut open and bloodied as he struck metal.

Throwing himself side to side, Gilgamesh, demigod among men, still fought back as best he could. Dropping his shield to his side, he punched back at the side of his foe, desperately, seeming to have no effect! Barely able to withstand the force of this fist into his skull- it was only with pure stupid resolve that he managed to grasp hold of his enemy’s heavy armor, and pulled him down on the ground with him! The two, rolling in the dust, kicking up dirt and mud and smearing it into each other’s faces, traded blows, as each of their weapons fell to the ground, and their fists were all to battle with. And Gilgamesh, favored by the gods, struck true and harder. And with one solid strike to the giant’s nose, sent him down into the earth. With only one chance more, seeing his foe weak and vulnerable for what may be the last time, Gilgamesh roared to life! He threw himself atop Huwawa, who desperately struggled to get out from under him in vain! Reaching for his axe, Gilgamesh grasped it firmly, and with all the strength he had left threw it down true towards the giant's neck!

A horrible sound crunched from under him, as the axe bit deep into flesh. And with his pure animalistic drive, Gilgamesh struck again and again, howling like a wild beast, until where he had once struck flesh he now struck dirt. His whole body shook- with pain, with sickness, with anger. And with shaking knees, Gilgamesh took the severed head of his foe, and held it up towards the sky! And all looked on with horror and with fear, with disgust and jubilation, as all the armies of Uruk screamed with victory!

That was, until with horror, a moment, and Gilgamesh’s gaze turned to his foes- who’s bows began to be drawn, and, as if witnessing it just before it happened, saw the bows of their armies loose a hundred arrows towards him.

GILGAMESH!” Screamed his charioteer, who threw himself from his cart, and sprinted towards him at the speed of their arrows. The prince of Uruk reached for his shield, and held it up just in time as a shower of arrows fell upon him! They bounced from the bartered bronze shield with the sound of rain, and with them, all the armies of Uruk screamed with horror! As their prince lay there, he could not protect himself whole, even as his shield saved his body, his legs were struck twice, one in either calf. With another shout of his name, his charioteer gripped the man by the shoulders, and desperately pulled him towards the ditch! Another shower of arrows, another one hit home. This one Not upon Gilgamesh, but upon his charioteer, who writhed in pain as it struck his arm. With but one arm, he still carried on, and the two collapsed into the water holding each other in a desperate embrace.

With the sound of horns their king, upon his golden chariot, screamed down at them with tears in his eyes. “Save your prince! Kill the cowards! Kill them all!” The armies of Uruk began their advance. All across the field, the thunder of feet and hoof kicked up mud and dust, as they threw themselves towards their enemy, whose rain of arrows turned from their fallen prince to the masses of men, with wicker shields raised towards the sky.

And for the hailstorm of arrows and slingshot from their enemies was answered by a hailstorm of their own- as arrows whistled through the sky, some screaming, and haplessly bouncing off the bodies of their foes. Yet many more did no such thing, and buried deep into the shields of their foes. The rare one planting itself just so past their defences, that it buried into their flesh and muscle. So the sky was darkened with the shade of volley after volley, as the two armies clashed upon the banks of the shallow trench.

Across the line of men throwing themselves heroically into the slaughter, the wings of both sides had begun to move. To the East, the muddy banks of the Euphrates made camel or horse travel impossible. Thus they all came to a clash around the western side, as chariot and camel alike swung around to attack each other! The great host of camels and their riders, hundreds of them, met head on with a long line of chariots, their noble riders firing arrows towards them! Yet they were undeterred, and with horror those noble charioteers looked to see the barbarians charge right into their chariots bodies, that the horses became panicked and threw the cart over its side, while the barbarians stabbed wildly with their lances. So they cried, “We go to Abzu! We are as one!”, and without fear of death but eagerness for the end, threw themselves towards their foes. If this was not enough, those who did not close the gap fired bows which cracked like shattering wood with each volley. And the screaming arrows, which whizzed past their poneys, only furthered their running amuck. What had once been a straight-on collision became a panic! As chariots were thrown from side to side, horses’ legs began to trip and break, and riders were thrown from their carts! In desperation, many tried to turn their carts around, yet swarmed with so many beasts, they were cut down before they could do so! Dozens of noble men with gleaming armor riding upon their most valuable chariots, that which was the prized possession of the army of Ur, threw themselves upon the ground and ran for dear life, cut down by a barbarian foe as they ran.

Yet all was not well for the armies of Uruk, who were no match for the infantry of Ur. In their gleaming plate armor, slash after slash could do nothing to penetrate their defences. The butchering began to heavily favor their foes, many of whom wielded blades of sky-metal, breaking in two the weak copper blades of the common man. They began to be pushed back, the enemies crossing the waters of the ditch, and forcing their foes into a staggering retreat.

“Where is my son?!” The great king cried, pushing and hacking, slashing and screaming stabbing through the chaos. Blood covered his breastplate, his cheeks wet with tears. There upon the ground he found the two, Gilgamesh and his faithful companion, dragging him to safety. With fury, Jushur threw himself at any who came close to them, beating back even the bravest warrior who attempted to stop the two, as they dragged themselves from the horrible chaos.

Yet all was not lost. For just as their enemies had lost the fight against the Gishimmari, thus was opened a chance to attack. And swinging around the side of their forces, just as they retreated, the chariots of Uruk thundered behind their foes. Volley after volley from both charioteer and camel rider was struck into the backs of their foes, who, unaware of their presence, were struck vulnerable, and fell over onto themselves. Their charioteers, with spears ready, reached into their lines of archers and slingers, who, with no-one to aid them, sprinted in all directions, cut down for sport by the men of Uruk. From amongst the soldiers of Ur, shouts began to emerge telling them to “fall back!” For few had realized what had happened, how their line had fallen into a chaotic mob spread out amongst the groves of palm trees and ditch. How they were now shot from behind with whizzing arrows. How their comrades behind them were being cut down. Yet even this created more chaos, where those who could not hear the call to retreat continued to press forward, and isolate themselves, while those who did turn to fight the Gishimmari and their foe’s chariots could not catch a man upon a beast, and became fodder for bows and lances.

Bodies thus began to fall not like rain, but like a hailstorm. As blood filled the ditch and watered the fields, men began tripping and falling upon their own comrades. And with a final demand for victory, Jushur led his bloodied soldiers on foot into a final charge upon their confused and routing foes. What had been a slaughter became a massacre, as any sense of coordination broke down. The men of Uruk, who had become scattered and isolated, were brought to the ground and brutally beaten. Madness ensued, as the screams of man and beast alike continued for hours, as the gods watched upon this horrendous scene and did nothing. This silence was surely the cost of their boon.

And whence the slaughter had finally ceased, the men looked to themselves to see with shock they had somehow survived the slaughter. For half of their comrades lay dead or dying, writhing upon the ground with hunks of flesh carved from their bodies, suffering and bleeding with no hope of survival. And the mothers, wives, and sisters of these men in the hundreds began to pour out of the city, and cry upon the sorry sight of what had been made of the men they loved.

And while the black-headed ones cried, the Gishimmari did not give up the chase. For the field, scattered with arms and armor, became ripe ground for looting. For they had suffered, but nearly in the same numbers, and thus many felt the freedom to do as they willed. Yet a pious folk, none could bear the thought of mutilating the worse bodies, even if it meant losing a portion of their loot. They stripped the armor and shoes from their foes, they took their swords and their nobles jewelry. They poured over their foes bodies, and began to meticulously divide their score amongst themselves, first and only to most of the victory score, as their comrades before limped and licked their wounds.

A young man stood amidst the ruins of the field. Battered, shocked, and bruised; yet still alive. He felt half-dead as his mind spun and wandered in the evening darkness. For ever since the chaos began, he had lost sight of his brother, who he’d sworn to protect to the end. The trees were littered with bodies and blood, as he desperately looked from one to another, hoping that somehow he would find him alive. Though every moment seemed to show worse and worse odds, as his stomach churned and turned to bile. His head spun, his chest aches, as tears filled a brave man’s eyes. “Munzur?!” He called out, over and over again until his throat burned and gave out, and his breathing became pained and shallow. With every passing moment, every incorrect body, the field became darker and his searching more hopeless. It felt as though hours went by, as he stumbled around gazing upon the pained, sculpted faces of the dead. He screamed and threw himself about, anger consuming his desperation which had become hopeless.

“Curse the gods! Curse the King! Curse these accursed foreigners. I am alone! And my brother is surely to haunt me for my actions…” He whimpered, and, with nowhere else to go, fell upon his knees and wept. “I’m a failure mother. I am sorry mother. I could not do the one thing an older brother must. I allowed my younger brother to die before me, and not even with a proper burial! For surely, his corpse has become food for the wild animals, or the birds who feast on rotting flesh!”

There he wept until his eyes stung and he could cry no more, for nothing would come from him but gasps and coughs. And when the haze of tears no longer clouded his eyes, he looked through the trees to see a dim fire burning in the night. With pitch blackness consuming the accursed landscape all around, he stumbled past the trees, and into a field, wherein he saw three men in dark cloaks gathered around a campfire, drinking, while their camels grazed beside them. In fury, he ran towards them “Bastards!” He screamed towards them. “You sons of dogs! How can you drink now, while the bodies for your fellow warriors still lay upon the earth unattended?!?” And to his surprise the three merely stared at him, enraging him more. “Can you not speak you disgusting, good for nothing-“ A hand rested upon his shoulder, and a calm voice came from behind him.

“Peace, peace brother…” The man said, and he turned to see not the familiar face of his brother, but another of the Gishimmari. His face was scarred with old scars, his linen robes were covered and stained with mud. “We have lost much, but in Abzu’s arms are those which are gone. You have lost someone? Let us help you find him.”

He stared at the older man for a moment, as his rage subsided as if by magic of this man’s words. “That… That would be nice.” He said, and all at once he felt as though his anger was unjustified.

“Tell me your name, lost warrior.” The nomad asked, letting go of his shoulder.

“I’m Shuri.”

“And your brother?”


“Shuri, I thank you for your understanding. My name is Yassib. These are very painful times for many, and we have all been scarred by the horrors of war before. Do not confuse our familiarity with death with disrespect, for we are just as sorrowful for our brothers who return to Abzu’s waters this day as you are. It is simply our customs which may seem incongruent with your own. You weep and tear at your breast to mourn, but for my people, we mourn our dead differently. To recite a brother’s name, and drink to it, is a sign of respect for their memory. A tradition of oral recounting so that we will not forget. But perhaps we may help you find your brother. If you were searching this late in the woods, you would come up empty handed.”

“And how can you be so sure?”

“We have already picked over the bodies. You will only find lawless heathens scattered among that grove.”


And, turning his back to him, Yassib walked towards one of the camels, and began to dig inside a bag upon its back. He looked up from his work, back at Shuri. “I have a few candles, that you may have some light. Perhaps, if he is among the dead, you can identify his body.” And taking two long white sticks upon metal discs, he knelt down by the fire and let it’s flames lick and jump upon the pillar. “Come over and look.”

Confused, Shuri walked behind Yassib and past the three, who still stared at him, to see behind their camels was a field of bodies wrapped in cloth, laid out in long rows. There had to be at least fourth of them, which, to his surprise, were all delicately tended for, and donned still in their weapons and armor. “We did the best we could to honor those of your kind as well.” The old man said, and held the candle out to Shuri. “Take this, and have a look. We can help you bring your brother back in the morning. But for now we must keep watch over the others.”

And, passing through those rows of lives now taken, dutifully placed to rest alongside those who died beside them- he was grieved to find a familiar face looking back at him. Perfectly still, as if carved from marble. And he wept no more. His heart was too grieved to do anything but stare and mourn. And yet still, he summoned the strength to turn his head, and see the Shari'i standing there, looking back at him. They saw him there, vulnerable. But more than that, they saw his pain. And in their eyes he saw those very same wounds staring back at him. A silent connection which bonded them with common pain.
"When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?"

User avatar
Posts: 6689
Founded: May 02, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Orostan » Thu Jun 30, 2022 1:56 am

Aaron Dawson’s Story

Year 16 Month 10 Chinese Imperial Calendar - 2964 BC

Taxes and War

Every state no matter how powerful has security concerns and legitimate threats, and must provide for the expense of managing those concerns and threats. The Chinese state was no different, and with the bandit wars having emptied granaries and depleted the supply of labor it was under pressure to seek more affordable ways of managing the tribes and statelets surrounding it. To fund itself and these new border security expenses the Chinese state had traditionally relied on a "labor tax" which was imposed on entire communities rather than individuals to simplify administration. This labor tax typically entitled the state to a portion of a community's labor amounting to perhaps a week or two per person if evenly divided among them. Usually this was taken in the form of a portion of the grain harvest from farmers, but in other cases it was taken in the form of work on state infrastructure. In those cases grain taxes at the end of the year were usually reduced for whatever community the laborers were being drawn from. Usually a small number of people would pay taxes for their entire community and work for the whole year or for several years for the government.

Although taxes were generally high and even untaxed grain ended up under state control to a large degree thanks to the centralized system of granaries, especially in the more built up areas of the country, there were a number of ways the state kept its population happy and paying taxes. In general less prosperous rural areas paid less taxes than the cities and river towns which were taxed much more. Taxes across similar communities were also spread very evenly due to the Chinese policy of changing out administrators after two years and assigning men from one end of the empire to run the other end. This resulted in administrators generally detached from local clan struggles and reduced their ability to build bases of power of their own or favor certain clans in taxation policy to do that. Both the threat of ambitious administrators and clan politics were mitigated by this. The state also spent much of its labor tax revenue on building public works and investing in projects which served to increase quality of life and state revenue in the long run. Farmers who did not need to work as much of the year to feed themselves as they had before thanks to irrigation projects could be taxed more and drafted into the military at higher rates.

With the amount of work being dedicated to expensive public projects there were many opportunities for corruption or favoritism. When a housing project was initiated in a city it was not uncommon for administrators to try and build large houses for themselves or their own clans. This tendency was mitigated in one way by extremely strict and severe enforcement of rules and a strategy of randomly auditing public projects that aimed to make examples and scare administrators away from corruption. In another way it was dealt with by rewarding bureaucrats who actually did their jobs effectively with luxury goods and better living conditions. However a nice house came with additional responsibilities and in order to keep a constant income of good soap, fine silk, and other rewards of good work bureaucrats would have to show consistently good performance and their sons would be held to a higher standard on civil service exams if they wanted to keep what their fathers (or mothers, in some cases) had earned.

The effect of the bandit wars and already existing clannishness in most of the country had resulted in manufactured goods being distributed mostly among more urban clans, and the rural areas receiving mass produced textiles, shoes, tools, and other goods through the Ministry of the Public Stock which had its own system of taxation that served to take from cities or towns and give to villages. While this did wonders for keeping the rural areas loyal and integrating newly settled tribes into the Chinese system it created a great deal of social tension in cities. Urban areas were being asked more frequently to provide for rural areas and the more the productivity of textile mills or other industries increased the more cities were asked to give up. Although cities benefited from a great deal of public investment in the south of the country where artisan traditions were much more developed and the bandit wars had not been as apocalyptic there had been urban disturbances and even occasional rioting when a new tax on produced goods was imposed or an existing tax was raised. In one incident two warehouses in the southern city of Kuaiji had been stormed and looted by urban workers enraged at a tax that would have deprived them of all gains from productivity improvements for ten years. These urban disturbances were greatly aided by the tendency of urban people to regard the new taxes as a formalized way of paying tribute to bandits in the countryside who were now supposed to be 'citizens of the empire'. In reality the desire of the central government was to use more abundant manufactured goods to convince the rural areas and newly settling tribes to accept paying even more taxes.

In total a city, town, or village paid taxes on its agricultural production, its artisan or workshop production, and its labor. Sometimes the taxation of more of one of these things was offset by a decrease of taxes in another category or reduced due to conscription (conscripts were usually not counted in a community's population which was the basis of all taxes), but in general taxes were high although rarely burdensome. State control of granaries also served as almost a fourth layer of taxation, as grain which was held in them was administered by the Ministry of the Public Stock and used to feed non-agricultural workers and provide for the population in general. This was not widely considered as a real tax as the Ministry of the Public Stock's job was not to provide the government revenue but to keep the economy in order, but there were occasional situations where what was practically an extra tax would be imposed by the central government often without the input of the MPS. These were common enough so that town or regional councils would try to pressure the Ministry of the Public Stock to get in the way of the military or other parts of the central government attempting to requisition grain.

Apart from public projects and keeping the rural people loyal and providing labor, most of the state's budget was dedicated to war. Joining the military was the easiest way to get your hands on good soap and the best goods the empire produced. Tribes invited to live on Chinese territory were frequently invited to contribute extra soldiers in return for a tax abatement that could last several years. Urban people upset about not enjoying the benefits of increasing productivity as much as they should could join the army and become very well paid if they stayed in it long enough. The pay of soldiers drafted to fill out provincial armies or contribute to border protection campaigns had also been raised to solve desertion issues which had begun shortly after the defeat of the last large bandit armies in central China and to encourage them to remain in the army for longer. Although the increased number of soldiers could not be equipped as well as the average soldier had been before the bandit wars, they were still issued equipment which provided them a large advantage against the enemies they were likely to face. A thick padded coat to protect from blunt attack, an iron helmet, and an iron halberd was found to be sufficient for most men. Swordsmen (who were usually more well paid and semi-professional) were issued higher quality iron or bronze swords and large square or elliptical wood shields reinforced with metal. They wore iron breast plates and copper or iron reinforced shoulder and arm guards. Only the best men were issued full sets of iron armor anymore, and these men were a minority in the military concentrated in central government armies. Providing wood armor to provincial troops still occurred although it was becoming less common as wood was not worth the expense and was viewed as inferior to copper which was much more frequently given to large numbers of provincial soldiers in need of extra protection.

In total military expenditure amounted to fifty percent of all government expenses with the majority of the rest of the governments revenue being spent on public works. Tax breaks and reductions were counted as an expense separate from all the others because it was estimated rather than known for sure and comprised between five and ten percent of a province's expenses usually. In terms of actual men employed public works outnumbered the military overwhelmingly although public workers who were paying taxes with their work were essentially not paid apart from bonuses which might be awarded at the end of their work if it had been particularly good or beneficial to the state. This and the cost of equipping a soldier made the military many times more expensive per man than anything else without counting any additional costs.

With the Chinese military already being an incredible drain on the state's resources, foreign policy had to consider the fact that China could probably not afford major expansions of its territory for some years at least. Large parts of the provincial armies were used in internal policing and the thousands of men and immense expense of a large campaign dedicated to taking and holding territory could not be afforded, especially considering that tribes settling in Chinese territory tended to be running from enemies outside the empire and attract raiders, therefore increasing the burden on the state in the short term even if allowing more people into China was a net positive in the long term. The tendency of provincial governors to launch "border protection" campaigns aimed at exacting tribute from tribes which occasionally raided Chinese territory which were difficult to discourage also added to the expense of border protection. This encouraged the state to rely more on its alliances with tribes and small states outside of China. In what in the modern era would be called the Sichuan basin the Chinese had been able to use a proxy - the "State of Shu" to fight the "Kingdom of the Ba" and expand Chinese influence indirectly in the region. The confederation of tribes that formed the Chinese backed "State of Zhao" in the north had been used to pressure the Shen Empire as well, and provided an important way to keep the Shen in check in the north. The incentives China could offer to a confederation of tribes or a king for cooperation only went so far though. When a confederation in the west the Chinese had backed against the Kingdom of the Qin and some Xianyun tribes lost a battle rather than try again with the promise of a Chinese legion being dispatched to aid them it chose to dissolve and return to raiding Chinese borders intermittently along with the Qin and Xianyun tribes. China could only get tribes to work with it effectively when it supported groups which were not dominant and had a reason to accept an alliance with strings attached or when another threat - like the Shen Empire - caused tribes or local kings to seek a strong ally.
“It is difficult for me to imagine what “personal liberty” is enjoyed by an unemployed hungry person. True freedom can only be where there is no exploitation and oppression of one person by another; where there is not unemployment, and where a person is not living in fear of losing his job, his home and his bread. Only in such a society personal and any other freedom can exist for real and not on paper.” -J. V. STALIN
Ernest Hemingway wrote:Anyone who loves freedom owes such a debt to the Red Army that it can never be repaid.

Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:“To understand the man you have to know what was happening in the world when he was twenty.”

Cicero wrote:"In times of war, the laws fall silent"


User avatar
Posts: 3476
Founded: Apr 27, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Suriyanakhon » Sat Jul 02, 2022 11:32 am

Kinoshita Grace


There was mourning throughout the empire with the news that the Retired Empress had passed away from the world, some of it was sincere and spontaneous, but the civil authority made sure that everyone regardless participated. Celebratory occasions and cheerful music were all banned for the first week, and temples around the country recited the Heart Sutra for the benefit of the soul of the mother of the nation. Throughout the empire, there was talk about the death being a bad omen, despite the Empress being a woman of advanced age, and her death being far from surprising news. “The sun is setting on our land, and going over to the other side.” some told each other. There were whispers that now Shen, or the Yellow River State, or Kim was the new Middle Kingdom, and that the Buddhist deities and protector spirits were leaving the country for new shores.

Among the people, firebrand warhorses like Nichirei and Wako, proponents of revivalism of Buddhism and Wagaku respectively, were on the rise.

“All of the errors and disasters of the past few years have been because we lost sight of the Way of the Ancestors, and followed the inferior path to gratification.” Nichirei declared to a crowd who had gathered to hear one of her sermons, the guards eyeing her warily. The last time a nun had given a lecture here, it had ignited a revolution. “We have never purged the heathen practices of spirit worship from our nation, or the great sins such as meat eating and alcoholism. Because of this, our ancestors fell down into the great hells and were unable to protect our nation from the barbarian invasions or the death of the Empress. Eradicate these, and the nation will once again be mighty, and the people will attain the great way and become one with the mind of the saints.”

The Greater Purification Movement had started to spread throughout the capital region and inspired vigorous enforcement of Buddhist law, sometimes on merchants and members of other religions who were normally exempt from observing them. Priests refused to perform blessings or to recite prayers for villages that did not throw out their old totems and maintain a strictly vegetarian diet. Monasteries which did not observe strictly vegetarian diets were liable to be subject to rabid takeover with more purist standards on diet enforced (but not, some noted wryly, on the rampant homosexuality that occurred there as well).

All of this was beyond the mind of the current Empress, who sat in misery as her court discussed the funerary rites of the Retired Highness. “Will the Eastern and Western Princes attend the funeral?” the minister of funerary rites asked. “They are both men of merit, and their recitation of the sutras would surely be a blessing for Her Majesty's repose.”

“The two have not been seen since they crossed into Korea,” replied the minister of intelligence. “And from what we have learned, they have made known that they are traitors to our august land, and consider themselves the preceptors of the western barbarians now. If they were to come, funeral or not, we would seize them and clamp them in irons immediately, before they can teach the Shen any more of their accursed magic, and they know that. The abbots of our own capital temples will be enough.”

Tears fell down the Empress' face. “No,” she told the court, much to the surprise of everyone. “They are her, and my, kin, and regardless of their feelings, we share the same blood. If they come, I will not have a hair on their heads be out of place, and they can go wherever they please after the funeral. Whether back to the Shen, or to the south, or to remain here. I do not care.”

Despite their misgivings, the ministers bowed and acquiesced to the imperial wishes.

Chi Lung, Taiwan

The turbulent wind occasionally beat against the ship, scaring the rowers, but Hirata maintained his confidence. The deck of the ship was small and cramped, but he did not worry himself too much about that, convinced in the belief he was that Brahma would soon guide them to wonderful treasures than what they couldn't have imagined before. Besides, he was not really this body, he was sure of it, he was atman, less than the size of a pinprick, so why should he care if this husk was cramped? His crew members, however, did not share his willpower or intensity of devotion and were constantly lamenting.

The Neo-Brahmins had been driven out of Hanajima, or rather, had left voluntarily. The government had decided that persecuting the heretics was more trouble than it was worth and it was much easier to simply offer them safe passage out of the country and into the southern regions. At the moment, it was careful not to violate the treaty it had with the Yellow River State, so the pilgrims were ordered in no uncertain times to avoid China or Korea.

It had been a few years since their exile, at first they had settled in Ryukyu. The community kept itself aloof of the natives, and mistrust was gradually sown between them because of their elitism and xenophobia. Eventually, afraid their children would be influenced by the savages, and noting the influx of Hanajima immigrants who were creating communities on the islands, they decided to head even further south.

“We've spotted land, Master Hirata!” one of the crewmembers ran down into the deck to inform Hirata, who arose from his seat immediately to come outside to look. The island was still far away, but it was there. A beacon that their travels would soon be over, and they would be able to create their new society. One where Brahma's principles ruled, and not those of the fraud Shakyamuni's. “Thank the gods, we're almost out of food.”

“No.” Hirata replied. “Thank one god, the father of the gods, the supreme self and lord of everything.” The crew nodded their heads and cheered more, taking a horn out and blowing to inform the other ships that they had spotted land.
Kampong Kembang

The mood of the village was morose as the men, women, and children were all busy preparing for the potential war between Bambamg and the merchants. Knives started to be sharpened, the women prepared the bamboo and tanned leather, children gathered fruits and berries. I sat on the steps of my house and watched on with apprehension. As much as I despised the merchants, I didn't want to have another war. Too much killing had taken place back when I was the Tenno of Hanajima, if more killing started, my presence would add to it ten thousandfold like a curse.

“Kepala! Kepala!” a boy messenger ran through the village to my house. I stood up immediately, did an attack take place? “The merchants are leaving?”

“What?” I asked convinced that I had misheard him. It couldn't have been that easy.

“They are leaving Taiwan. The tribes rose up with Kepala Bambang, and there won't be any merchants in Taiwan anymore.” the boy said, and I laughed in joy before he ran to tell the rest of the village. There were loud celebrations and promises to the tutelary spirits to offer sacrifices to the land of so many delicious fruits and meats.

The celebration went on well into the night, while I thought about what this meant for my future plans. No more merchants, no more potential spies for the Yellow River King, now I could go ahead with my desire to spread civilization here in this wild land. There was still so much to do and plan, I thought, as me and Zhou sat on my porch and looked at the sky while listening to the music of the festival. But maybe this would be my redemption and the nightmares would finally end.

What an idiot I was to think that.
Resident Drowned Victorian Waif (he/him)
Phra Buddhadasa wrote:Those who have penetrated to the highest understanding of Dhamma will feel that the thing called "religion" doesn't exist after all. There is no Buddhism; there is no Christianity; there is no Islam. How can they be the same or in conflict when they don't even exist? Thus, the phrase "No religion!" is actually Dhamma language of the highest level.

User avatar
Biladu Al Rafidayn
Posts: 1667
Founded: Mar 25, 2022

Postby Biladu Al Rafidayn » Sat Jul 09, 2022 3:05 am

The remaining soldiers of the small town nearby were marching. They carried actual weapons, not just the sticks they trained with. The glorious army, shining in the sun, prepared for war. All fifteen of them. The small town did not really have an interest in defending its borders, more interested in trade, as it was far from the border with other powerful nations. This resulted in the creation of an elite (or whatever was closest to ‘elite’ in this town) but minuscule band of soldiers, mainly used as a police force, or to kick refugees out of the area. Now, all fifteen of them were ready to start the combat. Ali saw it. As he was scouting, he saw them proudly stomping in the town’s direction. He ran as fast as his aching legs would allow him, which was much faster then the gloating soldiers went. “Soldiers coming,” he gasped as he arrived at the village. He shouted again, louder. “Soldiers coming! Get ready!”
One of the advantages of having a society reliant on hunting meant that almost everyone was armed. Ali grabbed his sword and knife, Utu scrambled up a tree with his slingshot and the other inhabitants drew spears, daggers and bows. Ali organised them into two groups, on either side of the village.
As the soldiers drew closer, he could hear them laugh. “… no idea that were coming!” chuckled a particularly round one. They seemed rather jolly for people who’s comrades have been killed recently. They obliviously walked into a trap.
“Fire!” cried Ali. Several arrows and a stone flew into the enemy. This would be a mere pin prick for a true military, but this glorified police force cried in surprise and started to scatter.
Once again, the projectiles struck the confused and terrified enemy. One of them dropped dead and almost all the others were injured. They attempted to fire back, but the villagers melted into the vegetation and then popped out again, now stabbing with their spears and knives. Three enemies lay dead.
They were now being rounded up, being pushed into a smaller and smaller circle and fired on, stabbed and slashed from every direction. Villagers appeared, ran, stabbed, ran back. The miserable men in the circle tried in vain to fight off the attacks. Eventually, when the sun set, only eight were alive. Six of these surrendered. The two swifter ones managed to flee when the villagers were distracted. Ali knew that now the town was their target. Next time, they would get help and crush their small village. They needed to be taught a lesson.
Alt of Islamic Holy Sites
See my military store!



Remove ads

Return to Portal to the Multiverse

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Kenmoria, Westeastern Dicantia


Remove ads