Chapter 17 – Fall What May (History)

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Fall What May – Part 1

      On the eve of the Fourth day, of the month of Austis, in the year of Tree-Ten, the rebellion, lead by one, “Azrael Von Vvesson” was squashed but not without the sacrifice of the Zeroth and his Valkyries. What follows is the recounting of the events per research, and eye-witness accounts, such as myself, a mere Ten cycles at the time of its ending.

      On the Ninth day, of the Month Jansus, in the year Root-Ten, the Zeroth survived the Transcendence and took his Valkryies, as per tradition, of the Vagars of the time. ‘Twas a celebratory moment of time, were there ever to be one.

      It is during these times that tensions began to rise, in part because of reports of aggression on our merchants by the tribals of the Outerlands. While the claims were unsubstantiated, the attacks were later shown to be the work of bandits, the public was soon rising up in demand of retaliation.

      Using the evidence supported, many of the Knights Ten refused to give into the bizarre bloodlust of the public. However, one Azrael Von Vvesson, chose to use the opportunity to support the public’s desires.

      Azrael was the Second Knight made First upon the successful Transcendence of the previous First to the Zeroth. His influence was massive in part to his own skills and persona, but also due to the genius of his wife, one Ninavin Von Vvesson.

      Her influence over Academia, is tantamount to a king. Her ingenuity gaining her the Master seat at such a young age. Together the couple, who’s matrimony was blessed by The One King personally, rallied the disenfranchised citizens to a, later discovered, false cause.

      However, the Outlanders were not going to roll over and be persecuted pacifully. They rallied themselves against the kingdom of Arsea and slaughtered us by the thousands. The Outlanders had ancient magiks that are found to be rare amongst the people of Arsea; and though we would not admit it, these ancient magiks were significantly more powerful than that of our own. Where we manipulate the elements, they manipulate forces that are yet without understanding.

      To make matters worse, our own people, whom were initially  supportive of the war, and inevitably forced to fight in said war, turned on us. The mobs, the riots, were unlike any this author, and various witnesses, had ever seen. Ordinary, everyday citizens were marching through the streets and defiling everything they touched.

      Our streets ran red with the blood of our people and our borders were razed from the encroaching Outlander hordes. Pure madness had seemed to take hold in our country and our end was fast approaching.

      The Zeroth Knight himself entered the fray and though powerful he may be, he was but one against many, flanked on all sides. Ninavin then, put concept to proof in an outrageous experiment. In order to guarantee the safety of the others it was reported she, that is Ninavin, conducted Aetherical manipulation, the details of which escape this author, on herself in an experiment in boosting the performance of innate talent.

      This went against the very core foundation of our traditions. Ninavin, you see, was but a normal woman not gifted with any aspects. Through means that escape all but her, she was able to modify her aetherical composition in such a way as to compete toe to toe with the Zeroth. Unleashing, “beastly and ghastly” powers Ninavin was able to trounce the dissenters within our borders in order to free up the Zeroth and Azrael to focus on the war effort against the Outlanders. 

      In time the Zeroth and Azrael Von Vvesson were able to push back the Outlanders. It is during this time that Azrael reportedly grew in competition to the Zeroth, in due part of Ninavin, and challenged the Zeroth’s popularity. By reports found and seen, the man known as Azrael was a charming man, but with mind of brick.

      Once the war ended with the Outlanders falling back to their own domain, Azrael was reported to see the new peace, and lamented. Spending ten cycles in a climate of destruction had given Azrael Von Vvesson a reported desire for more confrontations. Under the guise of a man of the people, Azrael was able to once again spur the citizens; however in this, he sought not war with the Outlanders, but an overthrow of The One King.

      Ninavin was reportedly working on her gifts of this, “science” as she calls it, to amplify the man known as Azrael, her husband. Once enough of the people turned against the Knights Nine and the Zeroth, in support of Azrael’s cause, Azrael and his ilk descended on the remaining Knights Nine with a vengeance to bring about a civil war, that’s affects still persist even in the days of this author.

      The Zeroth, sworn to dis-allegiance, halted in his attempt to correct the civil war, seemingly complacent with the knowledge that the people would do what they are wont to do. However, even before the civil war saw its end, it is reported that Azrael… changed. (‘Tis this author’s due diligence to affirm that the following accounts could not be verified and thus fall to the wayside of probable exaggeration and mass-hysteria).

      According to all accounts recorded, ‘twould seem that the man once known as Azrael Von Vvesson changed as the civil war raged. It is reported that upon the blood of his own people, his body bloated and became slime-like. ‘Tis told that upon his head grew horns that spoke up to the sky.

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      Upon his hands were a curse of claws able to tear through even the most solid of building foundation. Indeed, his own followers were reported to have changed in both temperance and appearance- their being more reflective of their twisted master.

      This, in turn, made those who remained loyal to The One King, to take upon themselves the mantle of Zealots in order to fight back the monsters of fairy tales e.g. the oldest accounts of verbal orations that tell of the beast of Eld and their masters, the Beta. Where humans and their ilk were perpetuated as the first species, the Alphas, these new creatures had warped and tore at the humanities of those that succumbed to the influence and became another species- Betas.

      It would seem that these circumstances, whatever their truths, spurred the Zeroth into action. However, Azrael was stronger than any mortal, reportedly. It was approximately around this time that one Ninavin Von Vvesson approached the Zeroth. By the accounts of those present, it would seem that Ninavin could not stand idly by and watch what was once her husband, destroy everything that they had once fought so hard to protect.

      By the accounts of those present, Ninavin’s hair was a yellow in shade at this point instead of the onyx it once was. Using that and her prior growth in battles as proof of concept, she offered to “adjust” the Zeroth. What happened next, to the exact detail, is not known to any outside of the two, and as later discovered, the six involved.

      What is known, is that the Zeroth was immensely powerful afterwards, and the Valkyries of before, now possessed hair similar to those of aspects. It is with this new found power that the Zeroth met Azrael in mortal battle. Upon slaying the one Azarael Von Vvesson, the armies of his ilk are reported to have vanished into dust. While such claims are again, unsubstantiated, ‘tis true that there is no burial site that can be found to house the corpses- of which there would have been many; far too many to have simply hidden away and be dismissed as a full fabrication.

      Soon after this, the Zeroth succumbed to the wounds he suffered in his fight against Azrael; however, curiously enough, the Valkyries soon fell victim to a sudden death themselves. It is in this tumultuous time of the Fourth day, of the month of Austis, in the year of Tree-Ten, that our nation suffered insurmountable losses unlike that which has ever came before; the loss of the Zeroth and his Valkyries.

      The nation was stunned- beyond the war with the Outlanders, beyond the mass-hysteria of madness to overtake our people in two civil wars, this was the day that set in motion the events to come; of which’s ramifications can even still be felt all these years later, in the twilight years of this author’s life.

      Ninavin’s research and application of her, “science” became the blame in the people’s eyes. Whether this is true or not is, again, unsubstantiated; however, the fear was real and that is all that mattered.

      Ninavin quickly became ostracized from society- her objective interference in Arsea’s protection gave her too much protection to send to the gallows; so people simply banished her from polite society. What became of her afterwards I do not know; but reports still occasionally surface of her, informing those few of us who still remain in the know, validation of her continued existence, some sixty-odd years after-the-fact.

Histories Of War, Vol. 4 – Twelfth Day of Sepsis, Tree-Eighty-One

George H. Bartholum

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