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 Post subject: The Road to Godhood
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:14 am 
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It seemed like forever ago that he had last seen Dahlia, Neer, and Jahel. So much had happened since then, and Drakol was still struggling to make sense of it. His memories were tainted or missing, and new ones were in their place – memories that did not belong to the life that he had lived, did not belong to the current era of history. The events following Sikoma's takeover were foggy at best, but the story from Neer and Jahel was that he had gone insane and summoned a horde of undead. After a brief scuffle Dahlia had managed to delve into his mind and, shortly thereafter, he and Dahlia had collapsed into unconsciousness.

Unconscious was the wrong word – they were dead.

What happened during the time that they were dead could not be said. There were vague dream-like flashes of two humans in a world different from theirs: a “plane”, an island, a tree, a portal, their bodies on beds, and then the rest became a garbled jumble.

Drakol remembered waking up and being acutely aware that nothing was the same in his mind. He had a new realm in his mind now, not a library but an arcane fortress. His memories formed a pool of swirling black and white on the floor a foot deep. Where he got that idea he could not know, but it gave him constant access to his memories and his knowledge – and he realized quite quickly that not all of it was his own.

Necromancy was not his art – his art was the bending of the pure arcane to his will. Where had the other knowledge come from? Something had happened, but he couldn't remember.... There was so much that he did not remember.

The fortress was comfortable, though had no apparent defences beyond it's rune-scribed walls. Where had he learned the runes? Where had he learned half of what he required to build such a fortress? Had someone else done it? It was not a feeling that Drakol liked, but he knew, somehow, that he had constructed this place of his own accord. Only, he didn't remember doing so.

Dahlia had awoken shortly after he had and they spent several days together. She had delved into his mind and had been frightened by what she saw – she confirmed what he had known: Half of his memories were not his own. They had consulted Jahel and he postulated that, somehow, Sikoma's mind had been mixed with Drakol's when his library collapsed. It made sense, and it terrified Drakol. What would stop Sikoma from coming back and taking control? Jahel said that Sikoma couldn't – Drakol and Sikoma were one and the same now, but Drakol was in the driver's seat and Sikoma was stuck as a passenger.

At first the wizard had been absolutely appalled at the idea, but as he mused over what that could mean he accepted the idea, and was even happy about it. In a brief span of time, hundreds of years of magical knowledge had become his own – and knowledge that allowed him to combine the two different arts forever thereafter. Suddenly, Drakol knew, he had surpassed Ein.

But there was more – there was always more. He was not a god yet, and that meant there was always more power to be had. A few days later he gave Dahlia a long kiss and bade her farewell, telling her to rule well and return magic to her people. She had tried to force guards upon him, but he had gently refused again and again, saying that he would be safe. “Then,” she said with tears forming in her eyes, “I command you to return safely. I need you.”

Her face was his clearest memory – the cool tears spilling down from her eyes, running over the smooth cheeks that he had caressed so many times before, and dripping off her chin. A strand of her fire-red hair had been caught by a tear and stuck to her face as she cried. He had taken her hand gently, kissed it, and smiled at her: “I'll come back safely, my dear. I love you.”

He turned quickly on his heel and went on his way, hiding his sadness from his mate. He dared not look back, lest he lose heart in his current path and abandon his quest. This was the second time he had left her like this. He hoped it would be the last.

Guards had accompanied him on the journey to the surface whether he liked it or not. His guards did not like him – they felt that his glow was unnatural – but they kept their peace and guided him to the surface without incident.

The sun was more brilliant than he ever remembered it being – no, that wasn't right, he had witnessed such brightness once before in his youth, though he struggled to remember how old he was when he had seen it.

He wandered the world looking for clues of the great library that moved across the land of its own accord every decade or so. It had taken a long time, during which he mastered the new tainted form of magic that he could now use. Eventually his search yielded a ripe fruit. The library was no longer on the continent – it hadn't been for some time – but it was still accessible to him.

He headed south and acquired passage from a merchant headed to the southern continent. The trip began on an eventful note – a pirate ship had come upon them in a sudden storm not a day out of port. The merchant and his crew had been shouting “It's the Storm's Mercy! We're doomed!” when the storm first whipped up. Apparently the Storm's Mercy was the most notorious pirate on the southern seas, having claimed over one hundred ships in her lifetime. The only one that seemed eager to face the ship was a woman with a large sword that was the only other passenger on the ship aside from Drakol.

In the beginning Drakol had thought nothing of the pirate ship, but when she finally come upon them and began boarding he resolved to put an end to the nonsense that was the attack.

He blew the ship to pieces in that raging storm, throwing massive bolts of explosive mana into the ship and watching her split nearly in half and then scuttle in less than a minute. There was something nagging at the back of his mind – something that he registered on an unconscious level but never entered his consideration. Someone, someone very familiar, had shouted his name just before his first spell made impact.

The merchant ship and her crew lauded Drakol as a hero, but he wanted none of that. He went back to his cabin and waited out the rest of the trip in solitude, remembering the days that he had spent with Dahlia, puzzling over the strange feeling he had about the voice, and musing about the days to come He would become a god he decided – such was his destiny.

The southern continent was strange – the people there spoke a strange language, wore strange clothes, and gave him strange looks as if they had never seen a drow before. He forgot that he was glowing now – it had become so normal to him that he simply forgot, like a piercing or glasses after a long time of wearing them. At first it feels strange, but after a while it becomes a natural thing and it even feels weird to be without them. He ignored the looks and pressed on, like an arrow to the target.

Now he stood musing before the grand library, one of the greatest bastions of knowledge to ever grace the world. It was was beginning to crumble to ruins, but looked sound enough. Vines had worked their way up its walls, seeking the sunlight above the treetops of the forest in which it was currently situated. Drakol mounted the first step muttering to his love four-hundred miles away. “I will become a god, and then I will return to you. Until that day...”

He wouldn't think of her again – not for a long time. Dahlia needed to be out of his head now; this was an endeavour that required focus and discipline, his every thought directed toward the fulfilment of his goal. She would remain in his heart though – always in his heart. He desired nothing more than to return to her triumphant, but that was a long way off.

And he had a great deal of work to do.

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 Post subject: Re: The Road to Godhood
PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2012 7:08 pm 
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The library was impossibly vast on the inside – far larger than it appeared to be on the outside. The library was the home of an extra-dimensional space, many times larger on the inside than the outside. Indeed, the entry hall alone was almost large enough to consume the entire 'space' of the building on the outside. What else would one expect from such a legendary location?

Standing in the middle of the vast entry hall, Drakol took in the vastness of the place. There were five levels, each with at least fifteen doors leading to different wings of the library. There was so much to the library that it would take several of Drakol's greatly extended lifetimes to make even the slightest of dents in the stored information, and that was just assuming that each wing was the same size as the one he was sitting in now. He felt a touch of despair – there was no way that he would find what he was looking for in such a small amount of time.

Almost as if the library was able to feel his thoughts, a large white tome on a pillar of jet appeared before him. It was a card catalogue of sorts, giving him a rough overview of what was contained in each section. It took him nearly fifteen minutes to find what he was looking for, but eventually he found it. He was searching for the section on wizardry, which was the eleventh door on the fourth floor. The book and its pedestal disappeared as he closed it and a black platform with a white sunburst appeared before him. As he stepped onto the dais it began to rise slowly, carrying him upward to the fourth level.

As he rose Drakol was able to see through the doors on the other floors. Through some there were rows of books that appeared to be endless, while through others there were creatures both fantastic and mundane standing still as death on pedestals. It was not until they passed out of sight that Drakol realized that they had been killed and stuffed for display and study. He vowed that, if he had time, he would spend a day or two in that section, if only for interest's sake.

Drakol realized quite quickly on his ascent that he was not alone in the vast expanse of the library, despite there not being a soul in sight. There were vague shadows barely seen through the corners of his glowing eyes. Other signs were brief, unnatural gusts of wind that seemed to ruffle pages of books laying open on tables that just happened to turn a single page.

The place was even more heavily magicked than he had first believed. It appeared that all of the other occupants were invisible – or on different, parallel, planes of being within the library. Either way, it would function to prevent distraction by other occupants. Drakol was doubly thankful, for it would also prevent others from peering in at what he was searching for, and perhaps taking it upon themselves to stop him if they were so righteously inclined.

The platform slowed its ascent and drifted horizontally to deposit him in front of his destination. Before him stood a vast expanse of book shelves containing the accumulated knowledge of a thousand years of study. Standing in his arcane sanctum, Drakol could only gape in amazement as the rows upon rows of knowledge. He thought back to his pride at the 'vastness' of his own mental library and scoffed. All of the knowledge contained in those shelves – now in a shifting pool around his calves – would not fill even one shelf in the huge room.

He entered in a daze, walking down a random stack and trailed his fingers down shelves, feeling the knowledge beneath his tingling digits. At the end of the row he came upon a large open space with a number of tables and comfortable chairs. There were only a few books scattered across the tables, the room apparently 'occupied' by only a few others scholars.

The scattered books barely warranted attention when considered against what was on the back wall. On the wall there was an absolutely massive diagram of the planar cosmology and the globe of the planet. The diagrams showed the linkage between the planes and the physical realm, the flow of the ley-lines through them, concentrations of magical energy on the physical plane, and more. There was even information on the other types of energy – elemental and eldritch – that was present in the world. It was, indeed, the most extensive diagram of its sort that Drakol had ever seen – any other contained only a fraction of the information that was present here.

His eyes were inexorably drawn to the location of the black spire where he had fought Gauge twice over. There was a large concentration of power in that area, rivalled only by a large concentration in the forest far to the north of the shale lands on an unnamed island. That, he decided, would be the place that he would ascend – far away from all others that would try to stop him.

He spotted a book similar to that in the entryway, this time with its colours reversed – a black book on a white pillar. Drakol cracked it open and rifled through the contents. There was more in the book than he could even fathom – more could be done with wizardry than he ever believed. It could be used to transmit messages over great distances or cause things to move at great speeds for fast transport, never mind its usage in combat – there were at least three hundred volumes on using wizardry in combat alone.

What Drakol was looking for was different, a far more obscure and difficult field of study. There were only a handful of volumes present in the vast stores of the library – probably the only volumes in existence detailing the subject. Drakol chuckled quietly to himself, The irony of the situation not lost on him – he was looking up volumes that had almost entirely been written by the foremost expert on the subject, “Allan Gauge”. He had killed the foremost expert on the subject of ascension to godhood. If only they had ended up on the same side, oh the discussions they could have had!

But, what was done was done – even wizardry could not turn back time, it was in nearly direct opposition with that element. The realm of psionics was the only one that could tie into time and manipulate it, and even the most powerful psions could only bend time for a few seconds. Ein could no doubt do it, and that was something that Drakol would need to overcome. Another project to accomplish.

Drakol noted the locations of a few of the books in the stacks and went to retrieve them. Lucky they were all there. He gathered them up, fingers caressing the old leather and cloth that bound the volumes, and took them to a secluded corner. Light was not a problem despite there being no apparent light sources or windows, just another magical element of the increasingly amazing library. A fitting place to begin a rise to godhood.

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