Ten Thousand Club
Cath even while dreaming would dream of her lands and the events going on in it. She had expected to not need to intervene and let things take their natural path allowing her to live out life after life among them. She had seen conflict coming and had expected it to come from others gaining power and threatening the old groups. What she had not expected was that two of the old group would let a very minor conflict fester into something that even Cath did not like. The priests sometimes claimed to speak for her and they had once been humble only saying they searched for her will. Now one pretended to bring justice in her name. That was the true insult: he pretended that he held her power and was her voice. Cath did not want any of the groups to use her to dominate the others, if they wanted to reign supreme they had to do it without using her. The odd flux in the laylines would have to wait as it seemed the other gods were messing with her domain, if they were that eager to have her remove her influence then she just might. That would have to wait as Cath would have to wake up. She didn’t want to wake up to be the goddess she was, but this insult to her could not go unpunished.
In Quan’cath all would know something was wrong as the twilight that bathed all the land eternally changed not tonight but to pure black and the glow of all things magical started to flicker and dim. The only thing that glowed as bright as it had before was the well where Cath slept. The well didn’t just glow as it had before, instead it grew brighter and brighter, a pillar of blue light erupting from it’s depths and all that looked upon it would realize what was happening as the blue became a bright red. Cath, their creator, had woken and she was not pleased. As the red pillar reached the heavens the sky of Quan’Cath was dyed crimson every animal hid and yu’varth ran for their homes not sure what the wrath of their fickle creator would bring. Not many would truly know what had happened in court, they would know of the sculptor but not even his destruction of the holy church had roused Cath from her slumber and everyone would wonder what had happened in that sealed room to cause this.
In the court even as the guards looked over the bandages and clothes that had held the sculptor they felt something change not knowing what was going on they did not know of the waking of Cath and the descent of her wrath upon her people. They would feel someone appear in the courtroom and raise their weapons before even knowing who it was as just now two people had died and they could not be found out. It was only a split second latter that they realized their mistake and dropped their weapons and fell with their knees going as far to press their faces into the floor at the sight. All knew Cath their creator, but in no work of art had she ever been depicted with anything but the serene calm of slumber, now she stood before them furry erupting from her and the expression of anger on her face making each and every guard know how close they were to being unmade.
“ My goddess we..'' The captain started before he was silenced with a raised hand from Cath the energies of the enraged god lapping against him making him feel as if he was being torn apart, millimeter by millimeter yet instantly healed at the same time. Any pleas he might have died in his throat as he knew he could do nothing before Cath.
Cath turned from the Capatin to the two dead Yu’varth and raised her hands. Energy poured from her fingertips filling the robes as even if death was not her domain Cath in her mind had every right to call back what was hers from the grasp of Ninuzid. The two Yu’varth that had seconds ago been dead were reformed both surprised and shocked as they had been dead. The first thing the two saw was each other and both knew they had in a way killed each other, yet the rage was not gone and as one the pair would lunge at each other. Just Before the highpriest and sculptor could meet both would find themselves yanked back and sent flying into the walls hard enough to send cracks spider webbing through the polished white rock. The two should have passed out, should have been in pain, but they were not and only then did they actually see more than each other. They registered the guards kneeling in full supplication to another figure which both knew. One had swore his life to her and the other had tried to bring about her image upon a pillar. What both didn’t recognize was her expression, never had they seen such anger.
“High priest D’Uze” Cath said her voice contrasting her clear anger as it sounded almost calm “ Explain” She said and with one word the priest knew exactly where he stood and how little sway the high priest had with his goddess.
“ I.. I-i “ D’uze stammered he had always wished to commune with Cath having thought his views were right and he had never seen a sign to the contrary. Now that he had his wish come true he could only want to run and never stop to flee the pure primal terror he felt before his maker. “ I was only carrying out your will” He pleaded though instantly regretted it as the red aura that filled the room grew more intense “ I thought you had sent a sign, we just tried to do as we thought you said. I didn’t want him to defile what you had made” D’uze almost cried sounding on the verge of a break down and madness “ It was him the heretic that caused your cathedral to collapse to harm your children, not me” D’uze screamed like a child trying his hardest to deflect any blame to another. D’uze raised his hand and pointed out the sculptor “ It was him he is the one that did it”
Cath could see D’uze did not get why she was angry, why this had caused her to wake up and not the destruction of part of her cathedral. Still the sculptor did have his own share of the blame for this incident. “Sculptor E’ral “ Cath said and E’ral knew he had no better standing than D'uze; they were both equally small before their angry goddess. “ Explain” she commanded, giving him his chance.
E’ral swallowed trying to not break down like the high priest who was trying to shift all the blame onto him. He needed to do something different; he could not just deny his guilt like the high priest did. “ I just … I am sorry I only meant to show my devotion” E’ral said, moving from trying to defend himself to throwing himself at Cath’s mercy. “ I did not think that such a prank would go so far, it was just meant to mess with D’uze as he was always so against the artists decorating the city.” E’ral explained though in a way he was also shifting the blame. “ I deserve to be punished, but D’uze was being too harsh and was going against the laws of Yu that we had set forth,” E’ral said, pointing to D’’uze who looked like he was trying his hardest to die again. E’ral would have said more but before he could speak he felt the urge to shut his mouth and never speak again.
“ Yes though what is a bigger sin, to make a mistake in faith , or to try to usurp a god?” Cath asked her they were both sinners, but one was less than the other. “ D’uze I have never sent a sign to you, I have never spoken to guide you for that was not what I wanted, you were to find your own way in this land I have given you. Instead you cling to stones left blank so that it might be decorated.” Cath explained just how wrong the high priest and his kind had been “ I had turned a blind eye to what your kind did because you did it with in the laws of your own people, but now you break those laws crowning yourself god of these lands for you say you speak with my voice” Cath continued her voice still sounding calm yet the infinite rage of the divine lurked just behind that front barely kept in check.
“ I didn’t mean to try to be a king, I never thought of myself as your replacement “ D’uze said though even he knew on some level he was telling a lie. He had seen the power he could wield if he just said the slumbering goddess sent him a sign. He had liked that power and thought himself the better of the other guilds that he knew best. “ I tried to do what I thought you wanted I wanted to make you happy with our people” D’uze croaked again on the verge of crying.
“ And look where that got us” E’ral snapped at D’uze before he regretted his words as it felt like a giant hand was squeezing his chest seeking to crush him.
“ Silence E’ral you are not free of sins for the high priest did not act alone and was not the only one to think he knew best what I wanted” Cath said though the sculptor had been more right than the high priest he was still very much in the wrong. “ You in your pride and haste, in your arrogance and spite killed your own kind and through pretend devotion brought down part of my creation all to get back at one man.”
Now it was the high priest who for the briefest moment got to feel better than his rival. Still both knew better than to speak then it came to bothering to defend themselves. Cath had torn through any excuse they might have and forced each to know this was about two men who wanted to get back at each other and tear the other down. One had done far worse than the other but both had made great mistakes.
“If it had just been the collapse of part of my temple, if it had just been the killing of my creations, if it had been a sentence within the laws then I would not be here” Cath clarified leaving just one reason she had truly woken, why this trial and the verdict given by D’uze had stirred Cath to action “ But it is not, now is it? D’uze you have insulted me and transgressed beyond any station you thought you had. Your kind has grown to think themselves privy to my thoughts and thus all knowing. You have doomed not only yourself but your whole order” Cath said a finality in her tone giving no room to protest her verdict. “ I will dismantle the priesthood and remake it as you have shown me it was a mistake to think you could govern yourselves without me. You however will not see that day, but you will not know death or rebirth all must know what it is to transgress me as you have oblivion is your fate” Cath declared.
Even as she spoke, Cath raised her palm to face D’uze, a black spot formed and then grew creating a wind as nothingness tried to suck in everything. From the nothingness black tendrils erupted each ebing another aspect of the great nothing of Unry. “ In this world of light, there is no place for you of the darkness. Thirst not. Hunger not. Return to the void” Cath chanted though she had no need to do so as a dark sphere appeared around the entangled priests screams were silenced and as Cath closed her hand the sphere of the void shrank and vanished leaving only a hemisphere in the stone where D’uze had once been.
That was one of them dealt with the greater of the sinners, now for the lesser. Cath would only somewhat change his sentence. She had an idea that was both a punishment and a way to protect him. “ Sculptor E’ral you will receive a sentence as well” Cath said and E’ral flinched expecting to face nothingness like the priest. Darkness however, did not come for him “ No you will live but you and your family shall leave this city” She said though she was not sending him to the mines “ You will go into my lands and you will find a land of sand and crystal there in penance you, your family and those who wish to follow you shall build a new city “ Cath explained not needing to explain the mercy in this act sheltering them from any angry ex priests. “ You are a sculptor no more from this day forth you shall be founder E’ral and you shall found the first city made by your hands and your hands alone”
E’ral could say nothing and as soon as he realized her was no longer being held by the power of his deity he also noticed the redness of everything had faded, the natural colors returning. “ Y-yes of course thank you thank you for your mercy” E’ral said anything even the mines were more merciful than not existing. E’ral not needing the command got up and ran past the still kneeling guards who this whole time had done their absolute best to not be seen or remembered. Still they could feel the anger had abated and their Goddess was no longer wrathful.
“ Go tell everyone spread the word you do not speak for me or with my voice but only carry the message. The priests as they no longer exist each is to be stripped of what they have to find new paths in life. And from now on I will be awake to help you deal with your problems” Cath ordered and the guards rushed out to spread the word. Cath wanting them to not be doubted would mark them so that all that looked upon them would know they spoke the truth. There would be much to do and Cath was just getting started already outsiders had found her lands. They were on the outside for now, but given how humans had been given immortality they would one day make it into Quan’cath. She knew they would only bring pointless death and destruction to her lands, they needed to be dealt with. Or at least she should have had to deal with them, but even now she could feel them leaving and was oddly annoyed by that. She had already thought up a lovely little curse for such brutes that had come to her shores. Mawlock had already dealt with the invaders and thus they would not suffer the curse, but Cath was not one to simply let a good idea go to waste. Cath vanished from the courthouse and appeared moments later in the snow of the outlands where she could just barely make out the slowly shrinking shapes of the humans. That had not left much behind being here only for a short time, still they had left blood. That muchCath could work with. With a gesture she unfroze the blood and made it float in the air before her. While she might have living or dead humans to work with, this was good enough for her spell work.
Cath reached into her mouth and pulled forth a tooth, a symbol of hunger. The humans had come with the hunger to fight, the hunger to explore, to kill , destroy, now she would create the manifestation of that hunger. Plunging the tooth into the now sphere of liquid blood Cath started the creation of her curse. The blood started to expand adding to its mass becoming a torso, then limb, then finger till it was the human made purely of blood. That was not enough so Cath scooped up the snow dirt of the land covering the blood human with white and brown giving it a solid form. Cath then changed the now solid whit humans, she gave it longer hands and claw-like fingers made it abnormally thin yet holding all the strength of the endless hunger of mortals. Yet even this was not enough, the humans had left behind the rotting hides they had swam in and Cath gathered them up with a wave. She then attached the rotting fur to the monster binding it as if it was living flesh to her creation. Yet the head was lacking, a human face with sharp teeth was no good. Cath tore the flesh and muscle away from the face exposing the skull and tore the skull up as antlers grew from the now empty sockets and from the former throat another skull emerged wearing the human skull like a helmet. The new skull was more like that of a wolf. With that and a few more minor tweeks the new being was done.
“ You are hunger made manifest, always will you hunger for the flesh of humans and what you do not kill you shall curse'' Cath said “ You are the first of the cursed, the first of the man eaters, you are Gjardr the first wendigo the first of the cursed” Cath finished as she gave life to her newest creature and set it upon the wastes. It would forever hunger and never be able to eat enough. That was another matter settled she Cath could now know the shores would forever be guarded by Gjardr and he would spread his curse to others in time.