Year 10 of the New Settlers Calendar

"I am the void"


The phrase resounded in the minds of all the settlers.  

As the Fair approached, they already felt their souls torn apart when they gathered in too many groups. Something - or someone - clawed at the inside of their beings to extract what was most precious.  

After a hazardous journey, with tired faces and heavy steps, the settlers arrived safely. Several camps noted in front of their doors the appearance of a Pylon, vector of the evil which took them to the body. Four had come out of the ground in different places, in front of Edenorya's door, in front of those of Vendavel, in front of the Primal Camp, and finally not far from the Circle of Ritual.  

The first searches were laborious. After vain attempts to try to decipher any disease, other approaches were tried.
Some experts then affirmed that a ritualistic web of great technicality had been woven all around the Island in a Net of
  my. The latter had the function of first capturing the souls of the deceased at the time of their death. Then he infused them into the gigantic corpse that was the Archivist. The idea was put forward that this was an extreme measure to avoid the total deliquescence of the dead body of the Island. Issue or simple symptom, it is clear that the necrosis and putrefaction that attacked entire regions finally seem to have stopped. By chance or by will, this snare mistook the agglomerations of settlers for a concentration of powerful soul, and thus sought to snatch this soul to return it to the Archivist.  

The souls thus found themselves beyond the reach of the Void. Despoiled of what he considers to be his in the cosmic order of things, the latter sent his agents to contact the colonists to offer them assistance and means in return for equivalent aid. Faced with their refusal to cooperate, he sent his creatures to corrupt the pylons in turn by force.

Void creatures appeared several times in front of the pylons, always in the same configuration. White-robed humanoids chanted around the construct, seeking to affix the mark of the Void upon it. All around, fighters with impersonal faces were busy confronting the settlers to buy enough time for corruption to take hold. Only the destruction of all the combatants made it possible to dissipate the Void and thus avoid seeing the pylons perverted.

Although some colos succumbed to the sirens of the Void, most faced it fiercely. Between voluntary and involuntary marked, the frictions intensified within each Camp, ideologies opposing convictions.  

A Void Avatar materialized within the Pact Camp of the Levant Empires to entice them to join his cause. The Queen, sensing his presence, had also gone there. The Avatar explained his goal, and reminded that he meant no harm to the colonists who followed him. The Queen then recalled that the fall of Kersis'kal, the civilization which once flourished on Kandorya and of which she is the sovereign, was the fault of this white enemy, and urged the colonists not to pursue what she called  “mistakes of the past”. The Eturians chose not to follow the Void, and suffered the bitter consequences soon after, coming under several assaults from the wrathful Void.  

But by nightfall on the first evening, the Void had been able to corrupt almost all of the pylons despite the settlers' resistance. The urgency of the situation forced a course to follow; the Entities present - Cornelius of the Totemics, Queen Elia'is Pragma, the Brazen Red Dragon, and the Angelic and Daemonic Quartet of Crosyus, Fortunus, Neros and the Keeper of Secrets - informed the colonists that a ritual of great magnitude had to take place. 


This was to be done simultaneously on all the pylons, all of which would suffer the Void's wrath in turn. We would have to hold on, be efficient, and be coordinated. In each Camp, several settlers took charge of setting up the Ritual of Stabilization, which was intended to calm the energies of the Rets, by harmonizing the pylons between them, while preventing the Void from parasitizing the souls used to maintain the Archivist in a state of partial cohesion. Four simultaneous rituals were to be conducted, each on a pylon. All guessed that this would attract the attention of the Void which would then send its creatures. You just had to hold out enough time and switch the energy from pylon to pylon so that the Ret could be stabilized before the Void managed to overcome the defenders.

However, this did not prevent certain powers from pursuing their own agenda: heavily weakened by a hazardous ritual carried out to place protection on the Pylon of the Primordials - the only one that had so far escaped any corruption of the Void - the Queen took them in influenza and brought war to their doorsteps. Cornelius, as well as a white-clad elf, unknown until then, intervene in the face of the Pragma's rage: the Totemic asked her to form a common front in the Void with him, and despite her arrogance, she accepted him. lend a helping hand when the time is right.  

Shortly before the attack, the Primordial Camp had also found itself at the crossroads of contrary wills: Airain, as well as Kovaris, opposed Cornelius accompanied by the daughter of Kfar, Ninawatah. An elf, nicknamed “The Elder”, also presented himself to the Primordials to counter Brazen's rage. The Dragons came for the achievement of a goal that was unthinkable in the eyes of their opponents. Brass swore to sweep away anyone who got in his way as the Totemic remained calm and poised, master of his words and gestures. 
Before things got out of hand, an agreement was reached and the Champions of Dragons and Totemics clashed for their Masters. At the end of the fight, of the 20 champions, only one remained standing, the armor slashed with blows. The so-called Other, the white obsidian, emerged victorious from the confrontation.
 

Elsewhere, tensions arose among the minions of Crosyus, Fortunus, and Neros. United against the Daemon of the Game, the conflict was over who would devour his power. After much confrontation and negotiation, it was agreed that the Keeper of Secrets would be the one to appropriate her power: and upon the destruction of the Daemon, she rose to a new power among the Unified Dominion, new colors of the followers of the Dominion Gods. .  


Within the Court of Bones, the festivities given in honor of the Queen were interrupted by a strange present: a mirror, brought back by invited settlers. A shrill cry echoed across the Plain tonight, and only those present knew what appeared in the heart  of this one. Nevertheless, all noticed that the next day, the wounds caused by the Queen had closed, and her vindictive behavior appeased… for a time.

The presence of the Entities and Powers - and above all their intentions - worried some of the colonists, however. Within the city of Edenorya, a ritual of Guildian magic was carried out in order to protect the city against possible attacks from these powerful creatures. It seems that now, the offensive capabilities of Entities are diminished within the city walls - as it was a few years ago.

The port, a favorite ground for pirates, was also the target of an attack from the Void. Disturbed by the presumptuousness of the pirates, the latter sent several of his creatures to attack the pirates of the seas. To the excess of the power of the Void answered the steel and the gunpowder, both carried by a song repeated ceaselessly, always stronger, in spite of the mowed down bodies one after the other. Before dissipating, the Void made its intentions clear. He didn't want to kill the settlers, just get back what's rightfully his. They could be with him or against him.

Inside the various camps, preparation for the ritual took place… Vendavel and its inhabitants began to create an artifact capable of storing energy while the ritualists finalized the arrangement of the ritual.
Some elsewhere decided that it was not their fight and that the Void could take what it wanted. It wasn't a problem for them because they could continue their little life in their corner since he didn't want them dead.
A large-scale confrontation even took place between the settlers. A combined army of the followers of Queen Elia'is, the servants of the daemon Neros and Meridion laid siege to the Protectorate. The fight was fierce but in the end, the Protectorate had to admit defeat and temporarily bend the knee.

 

THE RITUAL

Then came the conclusion, the big moment for which some had been preparing.
The 4 rituals around the pylons began simultaneously as the warriors gathered to face the danger that was about to arise.
It began at Vendavel.
The pale figures dressed in white materialized to rush towards the defensive circle. They were, however, repulsed by the courage of the fighters.
 
But it wasn't over. The Void materialized again, stronger, and charged again. Several fighters fell at this moment but the attackers were once again repelled.
A new wave appeared, even stronger than the previous one. Obviously, the Void was growing stronger every moment. When all seemed lost, an influx of energy from the other ritual circles healed the fighters' wounds. Others gave of their vital and mystical energies in order to allow Vendavel to hold out longer.
A new assault later, however, the breaking point was reached. The Vendavel Pylon Ritualists switched the energy to the next, hoping they had bought enough time...

The next point was halfway between the servants of the Dominion and the Protectorate. The fight again was fierce and the 4 powerful Angelus and Daemon fought together alongside the mortals. But even they couldn't have lasted very long if everywhere else the settlers around the other pylons hadn't transferred their life energy to heal the wounds of the warriors in the heart.  of action. The ritualists on site, eager to gain a few precious seconds, took a great risk and transferred the energy to the next point only late. So much so that one of them fell under the blows of the void creatures.

The Primo camp pylon was the scene of an extremely violent confrontation. Indeed, the defenders - greatly weakened by the substantial help they had provided in support of the other circles - were surprised from behind by the creatures of the Void and despite the help of their congeners from the other rituals and the support of Cornelius, they couldn't last very long.
Many lives were ended in this fight, whether directly beneath the Void Blades or elsewhere as people gave their last breaths in support of Camp Primo and the Cymbroghi at all costs.

And it all ended in front of the city. The garrison, undead, dragon servants and many others, supported by the Queen and the temporarily allied Red Dragon also fought against the last waves of void creatures. In the heart  of the night, the last assaults were repulsed. Enough time had been gained and all together the colonists had fought effectively.

Everywhere in the camps people tended to their wounds, mourned their dead or made new plans for the future. The threat had been repelled and life would resume its course. Or maybe not...
They all felt it. Ritualists, mages, and even those with low affinity to magic. Something was gathering, a sense of extreme danger gripped everyone's minds as fear gripped the people of Kandorya.
Those still valiant headed for the focal point, an open area outside the gates of the Eturian camp.

In a great flash of light they appeared. A new row of Void soldiers this time preceded by two Avatars. These overpowered beings that we had already seen in the plain stood up in front of the mortals, haloed with power. A white circle covered the scene, preventing the settlers from approaching.
Then came the Entities. Brass, the Red Dragon, Elia'is Pragma, the Queen, and Cornelius, the ape-like Totemic, all ready to face their common enemy.
Bursting in, Crozyus, leading the other 3 Greater Angelus and Daemons, entered the circle to rush at the avatars, eager for conflict. He was pushed back and even as the others rushed into battle they too were thrown to the side, too weak to face the incarnations of the Void.
The Totemic then advanced in front of the avatars and turned to the Queen addressing her calmly, asking for her support:
  - Elia'is, it's now. 
Before she could make a move, the Dragon spoke as well, his voice strong, imbued with visible contentment.
  - Elia'is, it's now!
And the Queen did not move. Her face closed, as if making a decision she didn't entirely want, the Pragma gripped Unlife, the legendary weapon, tighter and made no further movement.
A huge smile graced Brass' lips as he turned to the Ape Man. 
  - You will fight tonight Cornelius, whether against the Void or against me.
The Totemic looked around, pausing to contemplate the lives gathered here. The fight was inevitable but what would he choose? That was settled with his next words even as he gestured around the assembly.
  - Yes I will fight. And I choose to defend them. Them. 
He then advanced and twirling, leaping, dodging, he fought alone against the two avatars. Several times his blade hit its target but the confrontation was too unbalanced. Understanding the inevitable outcome, Cornelius paused to store energy. Time that the avatars take advantage of to skewer him with their spears.
The mortals held their breath, and as the Totemic crumbled, a cry of distress burst from the mouths of some Cymbroghis. But his very death was part of Cornelius' plan... Even as life slipped from him, he released  his energy and blew the two avatars who also collapsed to the ground, temporarily weakened.
As the Ape Man's body touched the ground, the Red Dragon and the Queen began to chant, prompting the colonists to act while they took advantage of the time Cornelius had given them to contain the power of the avatars.
Openings were then made in the circle, allowing a few champions among the settlers to pass.
The duels followed, champions of mortals against immortal creatures. When one of the colonists fell, a creature emerged from the shadows to pull him aside, bringing his body to safety. Although cautious, the Black Dragon worked  in its own way.
Many were the champions to fight. The Entities had done all they could, now it was up to the settlers to show their worth and tip the scales. After long minutes, the outcome was sounded. The combined blows of several champions overcame the last avatar, which dissipated, leaving behind only the corpses of those who had fallen.

 

A marine smell then fills the air and all the protagonists moved aside to see appearing above the body of Cornelius, a being with a face covered with tentacles and wearing a tricorn. Océanos, the Ferryman, had come to collect the remains of his brother. As a feeling of endless sadness filled the air, the two disappeared, taking away the memory of the one who had sacrificed himself.
A voice fills the air, strong and filled with the power of the inescapable:
“I am the Void.
 
I have come to recover what is rightfully mine, what I have been deprived of.
 
I have reached out and offered to help you against those Entities you are fighting against.
 
You have decided to oppose me. Because yes, it is YOU who succeeded in achieving this result, not the entities, not other forces. You mortals.
This will not remain without consequences. What I couldn't take here, I'll take elsewhere. Because it is so.
 
I am the Void. And I am Inescapable.”

The voice died out and calm fell on Kandorya.