A Thought Before Dying

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Galathir's eyes shone on the Sliver, watching it with eerie intent, as if studying something he feared. He spoke:

“I have long lingered on languid truths. A past, present, and future, all converging at points. It is my hope, Professor, that your action here will take us from inaction to ingenuity, from woe to weal, and from Vindictus to vindication. I do not know what it is that curses my kind, even though I live always in the liminal twilight between flight and burrowing torment. I can see at all points the moment in which it happened, just as the Apotheotheticals were thrown from this world. And yet, I lacked the prescience and lack the postscience to do anything of it on my own. And so… I leave it, then, to you, A Professor. The father of one of the greatest people I’ve ever met or been meeting. A Vorocitian. A woman vested with a past she needs to meet. A Tinkerer. A mind that will shake the fabric of reality. A Stargazer. A priestess with a heart that has not realized its power. A Watcher. A force among men that may well bring a god to their knees.

All of you, but Alu'thar most of all. Promise me this: do with my death what I could not do with my life. Lift this Vindictus Curse; and take no life of my kin of gem or metal. This I ask you vow.”

He then spread his arms and closed his eyes, and the clocks stopped spinning. Lights and dust hung in the air. Atar touched the Sliver to Galathir's form.

As the Sliver made contact, there resounded a keening note that flittered through the windings and fabric of time. The glass on the clock's face exploded inward, pausing moments before slicing all within to ribbons, and each shard reflected something... different.

  • Alta saw shifting sands and cluttered streets, a golden sun, an ancient ruin, and a massive manor shrouded in fog - the very same one she grew up in.
  • Asteria saw the underbelly of Centurion, shifting gears, a fractal pulse, and visions of ships that sail on starlight.
  • Ceres saw a color-starved town, a river of screaming flesh, an ornate palatial room, and a blinding sandstorm.
  • Lianthus saw his daughter amid a red glow, again in a vast mead hall, again around a campfire, and finally in a lightless room amid the ticking of clocks.
  • Sylas saw pink petals falling around him, a nightmarish purple-black sky, the rising of a cage from below ground in a massive room, and an evening dinner in a Fey court.

Each of them, paused in time as they were, felt the slivers enter their body. It didn't hurt. If anything, it felt right. And then, darkness. They felt a weightlessness, and could see chains of light descending towards them at a rapid pace before suddenly they found themselves standing in the middle of a lecture hall devoid of color. In the moments after they arrived as they looked around, they saw each of their companions had eyes that glitter and pulse with the only color visible here. Alta with a red stare, Asteria with gilded eyes, Ceres with a starry purple, Lianthus with a flickering blue, and Sylas with his pulsing green right eye, the left as devoid of color as the rest of the surroundings.

Each of them heard something race into their head. Clearly - obviously - something has gone so terribly wrong...

Written by Luridel, with formatting and additional writing by kiligir. This is the first six sessions of a game named Vindictus, and comprise its first arc.
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