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The Redemption

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  • The Redemption

    Apologies for any break of protocol - I am new to all this story writing! My first attempt at a CIV3 story. Let me know what you think.

    The Redemption

    Timeless and formless I see and move all. Yet I am not a God. I am worshipped by those people who live and die, who feel pain as they are gutted by a spear, who laugh when they run in flaxen fields as children, who ache when they age. No God am I. I have no race other than that which I force myself on. An ethnic cuckoo, I have no culture of my own, I can merely bask in the reflected glory of that which my minions may construct. My notions of right and wrong are whimsical at best. I did not create this world, but I live in it. I have no home, other than a nominal palace, but this palace is a metaphor in itself, for I can never see inside it. There are others like me. They can move and see all as well, confined by their realm until their minions, as an extension of themselves, can push back boundaries and reduce others to dust. Ragged old men, groomed children, red eyed basilisks, women with pale skin, dark women who call and laugh as we cast our spells. Then the passive, motionless, featureless things. The most frightening of all. They all face me and I face them back. But not one of Us can hold fate in the palm of our hands and say that we know it.

    I have been on this hill for… well, time has no meaning. It never really did. I am not warmed by the sun, nor chilled by the wind. The ferocious cry of the northern winter saw me pushed into this world, naked and alone in a slight dip in a remote incline, my swaddling clothes the rough grasses and brush which cushioned me. I could see everything around me. A limited distance, but everything was plain and safe. I could see my people, fledgling, naked too, as limited as the geography they were faced with. And at the edges of their vision was so much darkness, so much fear, so much vulnerability. I shared this. I felt their pain. Though I could not be killed, or even be seen, I was as vulnerable as they to the hostilities the world might send. For should they be lost, then my myth, my reason for being would be lost also. We were tied together in a tryst with a resolution that would be determined by fate.
    I dug my roots deep into that earth, and like a tree trusts in the seasons and the soil, trusted in my people. As I strengthened so did they. I was caught in fantastic storms, skies ripped apart, where the sounds of their worship carried on the wind. I was caught in baking weather, where the grass lit by itself on that hillside, and burnt around me. I saw rivers boil as molten rock poured into them, and still I heard their plaintive cries, as if I had any more control than they. They would scrabble in the dirt in lean times, their emaciated claws tracing arcane symbols in the sand. The incense stinging the eyes of the sacrifices, already unblinking and red-raw. Their worship made little difference to me. I too, was answerable. And he above me was answerable too. The hierarchy was unbroken and was older than your notions of time. And so far did it stretch, that to know the origin would be to know infinity.

    I learnt to project- slowly at first, hesitatingly, but I could suggest things to my people. Things which were so insidiously powerful that they became not suggestions but commandments. Some of these people were better conduits than others, and so they rose and became great warriors or chieftains. Amongst their people they were respected and loved or held with contempt and despised. Their decisions led to them being called “wise” or even being pilloried and put to death. Quite unexpectedly, they began to become protective of “their decisions” – their stubbornness and tenacity with these ideas, (despite the inspiration thereof being the distilled projection of my bidding) astonished me. I had carte-blanche, and these were my disciples, those brandishers of power, those who would energise my word and my orders. Something inside of them opened to me as they progressed in their ranks and hierarchies, something made them easier to manipulate. I didn’t even have to seek them now, no more crouching in corners of barns and huts as another joyless child was spat into this world. By mere dint of their office, their position, it was self-evident that I could keep them in my thrall. Like a child, finding his feet, learning to walk, I soon mastered their ways, I could tread the avenues which appealed to their most basic motivation, which transcended all material considerations, the thing they would follow over gold, over love, over hunger, over fear. The basic motivation to serve me.

    The process of projecting would be considered strange by any standards. I did it by holding my only possession, a smooth round stone, in my left hand. This was the only item surrounding me which I could touch and feel and use. It came with me, it was part of my consciousness, an extension of my will. Its weight was therefore a constant source of surprise, though to you it would be no more than a pebble. I had no frame of reference for this weight, existing in this vacuum. I concentrated on the one true feeling I could rely on, the weight of this stone. I felt the pull of the forces swirling around it, ferociously angry and tearful, dragging and screaming and kicking, demanding that it return to earth, furious at its impertinence. “Gravity”, it was later named, and given no particular characteristics by those who identified it. But I saw it for what it was; a twisted tyrant and murderer that could crush a skull, topple a building, and chain man to earth. It amused me, but even I was governed by its rules to an extent. I could not fly, but my sight could soar upward and over and around and look down on this creation and the lands of my people. The stone was heavier when danger was near – my heart would pound and my hand would sweat, but by caressing, by stroking and drifting it around me like the censors those tiresome priests would brandish, I could still open those channels, those channels which controlled my people, those tight little cracks that I had to squeeze through, rat-like to hold their mind like I held my cool, cool stone.

    My people, relishing in their false freedoms and pre-ordained choices, soon prospered under my hand. I can feel your shock, your confusion. The society you live in has rules and laws and religion and taboo. Cultural stoppers on the bottles on the shelf. Bottles that mustn’t be allowed to be opened, or would unleash sickening anarchy and pain. But I am not the contents of the bottle. I am not the designer of the stopper. I am the shelf itself. This is all built on my back, just as your world is built on the back of someone less or more like me. It has pleased him to instil you with these notions of “right” and “wrong”. I wish him luck. They have never served me. And so, you will understand when I tell you that I would often project that children should be hunted for food in rough times, or that women should be treated as dogs if they refused an accommodation (I could eat that fire in their eyes), or that the elderfolk of the enemy should be beaten daily until their bodies collapsed inside, and their souls were so bruised that they smudged into nothingness, you will understand that these are my rules. In my world. And that your outrage means less to me than a spark in all the fires of hell.

    To be continued…
    "Gaiety is the most outstanding feature of the Soviet Union. "

    Jospeh Dzhugashvili (Stalin)

  • #2
    Most interesting, please do continue and welcome to the stories forum.
    A proud member of the "Apolyton Story Writers Guild".There are many great stories at the Civ 3 stories forum, do yourself a favour and visit the forum. Lose yourself in one of many epic tales and be inspired to write yourself, as I was.


    • #3
      I love this!


      • #4
        Beautiful, utterly Beautiful.
        Read Blessed be the Peacemakers | Read Political Freedom | Read Pax Germania: A Story of Redemption | Read Unrelated Matters | Read Stains of Blood and Ash | Read Ripper: A Glimpse into the Life of Gen. Jack Sterling | Read Deutschland Erwachte! | Read The Best Friend | Read A Mothers Day Poem | Read Deliver us From Evil | Read The Promised Land


        • #5
          Quite a refreshing new perspective on leading a nation, and sweet writing style - will be a gem of a story if you can keep this up.
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