11 March 2007

Four Nations: Building the Dark City

I'm not totally happy with this, but it gets the basic idea across. And it's not like this is gonna be the final text or anything. But I figure we should maybe try to explain some of this Four Nations stuff.

There was a time, in the early days of the world, when death was a deep slumber. The newly dead fell asleep and their families lay them down in beds freshly dug into the earth.

The dead would dream in that subterranean land, the place below, the under-world. There, they would share pleasant visions or nightmares, all springing from the basket of memories they brought with them from life.

But the dead became unhappy. And so they harnessed their dreams to fight off their nightmares. Together they built a great stairway, leading them up from the world below back into the lands under the sun.

And the living welcomed the dead back into their homes. The dead had no dreams or nightmares anymore, for they left both under the ground. Neither did they sleep. But for a while the dead and the living dwelt in the same place.

It was not to last. There was a great battle. Each of the living that fell became one of the dead.

When the Dream Queen was slain, she rose from the ground as the Queen of the Dead. Surveying the field, she soon realized that, if the war was not halted, there would be no one left alive. She sounded her horn.

And so the dead separated themselves from the living. They drew away, beyond the light of the sun, to a place of shadow. There they build the Dark City to which all must one day travel. And the living stopped burying the dead, because the dead stopped sleeping. But neither could they dwell together.

And that is why the dead must travel, each in turn, to the Dark City. Those who remain behind among the living are ghosts. And trafficking with ghosts only leads to misfortune.


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