Saga of the Gods
Once upon a time and space long gone there was a land called Avandriel, and on this land lived a race of intelligent beings who called themselves the Brell. They were a rational but inquisitive breed and so as to help rationalise the things they could not understand, they theorised about a set of beings who were responsible for the unexplained wonders in the world around them; and religion was born.
First the star which provided their light and then the moons which traversed their night-time sky and the forces of nature on Avandriel were each in turn personified as a deity and worshipped. Religion spread among the Brell like a forest fire after a long drought and with similar disastrous consequences. Differences of worship caused much fighting and killing with even brell with the same father slaying one another due to religious intolerance.
The leaders of the Brell were forced into setting up a guiding force for the new religion which they named The Temples of the Soul, wherein the people could worship their god, provided that they respected its place within the pantheon of the gods.
Naturally some groups rebelled against the new temples, destroying them with fire and killing their keepers, which greatly angered the rulers of the Brell who were strong in their resolve to keep the temples. So they created a policing force the like of which the Brell had not seen before, a group of Brell whose sole remit was 'Wipe out all who did not hold with the Temples of the Soul'. Thus followed the tyranny of those called 'The Keepers of the Faith'.
As the Keepers grew more and more successful, religious differences were increasingly discouraged (often with bloody examples) and so a uniformity of thought grew upon the Brell until the whole of the race believed in the theology of the temples.
Now belief is a wondrous thing, and on the plane of existence that included Avandriel, the fabric of reality was thin and easily warped by the force of belief of many minds. Thus when the number of Brell reached a certain level a section of their plane was forced away into the limbo between the planes creating a new plane. And on this plane the gods of the Brell, just as preached in the temples, came into being and the age of the gods began.
The Gods as their first act of divine power took over the running of the temples, and they regularly appeared to oversee judgement of disputes in temple courts, solve problems, teach and give advice and assistance to the needy. Thus the Brell fell into an age of peace and prosperity; the obliteration of the occasional unbeliever as the only ripple on the otherwise still water that their society had become.
This stable state would have persisted had it not been for the invaders with no gods of their own save themselves. They swept down on the defenceless Brell and began to systematically eradicate them from the face of Avandriel. The Brell beseeched their gods for aid, and indeed the gods came but they were impotent as the invaders did not believe in them and were not therefore in their power.
The Invaders had a science which the Brell had never needed, and so they could not be stopped.
Settlement by settlement the Brell were destroyed; and as the Brell dwindled in numbers the golds fled to their plane and mourned the loss of their worshippers.
After a time the gods saw the last remnants of the Brell die and resolved to try and recreate their former worshippers. However they found that the combined strength of their minds was not enough for the task. So it was decided that new gods would be created by the remaining gods by briefly combining their essences to create a new 'child' god that would be an amalgam of the parts of its 'parents'.
Initial attempts at creating such a child proved distressingly that the child could not exist on the plane they inhabited. So an area in Limbo was set aside as a 'nursery' area, and a part of their plane was given over to physical forms - Lomah - in which the 'children' could power their avatars with parts of their essence.
In this way, they might increase their level of existence through learning to the point where they could survive on the plane of the gods and help in the re-creation of the Brell.
Avatar I - The Tower
Tall Tales of the Tower
"There is some corner of a foreign plane that shall forever be England".
By the town of Beeston (named after a traveller who made camp in a field of hives, and was stung to death by the bees) flows a river called the Thames. There is a small island in the river, linked to the bank by bridges, which is called England, and there is a sprawling series of towers, ramparts and fortresses occupying most of England's land. The local inhabitants have named these buildings by calling the island's most prominent feature, a dark tower that seemed to reach the clouds, the Tower of London. It is not known where the word "London" derives from. Some say that it was a literal reference to the buildings surrounding the tall tower being "low-down" in comparison.
Great wealth and treasure was held and guarded within the Tower. As well as the Royal Mint, there was an especially closely guarded area, the Royal Apiary, where queen bees were nurtured and supplied with pollen so that the Land and its people would prosper with a controlled supply of honey.
The guards within the Tower were an elite band, renowned for their longevity and very peculiar uniforms. Their various duties caused them to be known as Bee Feeders.
Over ages of time, as the Tower fell into disuse, and the land became a republic, the purpose of these guards became forgotten, and their name was corrupted to Beefeaters. They still patrol the dusty corridors of the Tower, intensely possessive of their territory, although they have forgotten why they do so.
Avatar II - The Citadel
Chaotic Citadel Chills
After the extinction of the Brell, and whilst the plane of Lomah was being formed, some of the newly created but malformed inhabitants were sealed into a castle, perched high above a chasm. The only route to the castle was a narrow stone bridge that spanned the bottomless chasm; and the demons of wind, fire, and darkness guarded it.
There was but a single exit from this dark citadel, known only to those of the Council of Deities at that time, far removed from the dreadful entrance.
As ages passed, cut off from the more benevolent magics of the rest of Lomah, the denizens of the citadel went slowly mad. Their bodily forms distorted into even more grotesque and deadly shapes, driven by the homicidal urges of their poor tormented minds.
Throughout Lomah, people speak in hushed tones about the fabulous treasures that are contained within the citadel's dark walls, and shiver with terror at the thought of the deadly traps and obstacles that intrepid adventurers must overcome to win the rewards of valour.
It is fabled that none but the bravest and strongest of adventurers can enter the citadel, let alone survive its rigours. To the victor comes the ultimate accolades of his/her Guild!
Avatar III - The Crypt
Shortly before the invaders of Avandriel ransacked the oldest and largest Brell temple, the Gods made a final attempt to remove the infidels.
Inside the temple, several of the major Brell Gods merged themselves with their stone images, and animated them with dreadful consequences; especially wear and tear on the delicately fashioned floors!
To protect their temple they created the nameless horrors and a hideously fanged lethal monster to guard the single way in. With these guardians in place no invader dared approach the temple, which was surrounded by a graveyard holding the bodies of brells who had tried to oppose the invaders.
Shortly before the Brell Gods placed their guardians, hundreds of the Brell came to worship their Gods and seek protection. Amongst the many that arrived were spies from the invaders, hoping to find another way out, back into the graveyard.
Many months passed, and the graveyard was laid seige to from land and from the southern sea. many believers were slaughtered by rains of burning arrows.
As the numbers of believers shrank to the lowest numbers that could sustain them, the Gods decided to increase their power and release their people from this blockade.
One by one the believers' souls were merged with the Gods' personalities and their soulless husks were left to roam below the temple in the lightless passageways; the dead had no need to see.
Under each stone slab there was a slaughtered Brell, waiting...
In the meantime, the Gods had regained a small amount of their omnipotent powers and used it to save the final temple from being over-run by the invaders.
Below the main floor of the temple they set up a room that contained nothing, or more precisely, everything. the constructed a huge power source called the Singularity, which contained all their believers' souls; and with this power, the Gods did something extraordinary.
Outside the graveyard, on a clear and crisp winter's day, the General of the army laying siege was awoken by his men yelling and screaming. Bleary eyed, he got up and looked at what all the commotion was about. From his vantage point in one of the village inns he could see that the whole graveyard was glowing. Soon after there was a huge bang and then silence.
The graveyard had vanished!