T'kalia Character in Cathedris | World Anvil

Cathedris Themesong

T'kalia

A Monument to Eternity

T'kalia middle.png
He never moves, never so much as flexes a muscle. Just stares with those dead, flat eyes. Sand forever pours from tear ducts that went dry millenia ago. He's remained in that location so long that whole colonies of giant fungi have populated his body where it touches the ground.
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— The Tower Duo; A history of Rak'tos and T'kalia
  Broken, frozen eternally in his moment of agony, and overshadowed by his greatest failure the incomplete Comprilith; T'kalia remains on one knee in central Enqua as a 250m tall monument to grand aspirations and the inevitability of time. His body is icy blue, and appears to be in a perpetual state of decay, as portions of his flesh bubble and rot, yet vanish before ever reaching the ground. Strange time-defying sand pours from his eyes and the chest wound from which his very own spear sprouts; a third arm erupts from his back, the entry wound, and coils around that spear as strange crystalline objects hang motionless around him.  
T'kalia was once the god of Time and Information, undertaking the grand project of building The Comprilith with Rak'tos. T'kalia waded through the eras for information, while Rak'tos shifted space to store all knowledge inside the structure.   It is considered one of fate's cruelest jokes that the T'kalia seemingly ran out of time before the Comprilith was ever completed.  

All the Time in the World

Most records from before the war state that T'kalia had a unique method of experiencing time, compared to other beings that experienced it linearly. Yet he did not have complete omnipotence over time; rather he had a greater awareness and appreciation for it. Time was a vessel, and T'kalia used it to learn all he could. He was always slow to speak and rare to respond, his observation instead focused on however he perceived the flow of time around him.   However, there was always one that could break him out of his reverie and focus his attention on the present: Xiuthan, the god of growth and decay. The Time that T'kalia held so dear was ever present in the cycles of life and death that Xiuthan embodied, and thus the love T'kalia felt extended to Xiuthan herself as well. However, for whatever reason, these feelings never blossomed into a relationship between the gods. To Xiuthan, time was merely a tool with which she practiced her craft; because of this, T'kalia could never be more than just a fellow god.

















     
 

Scraps from The Comprilith

  • Small pieces of the floating crystals around T'kalia have been collected. They are quite cold to the touch and resist gravity, floating in space wherever they are let go of.
  • Some mushrooms from T'kalias legs were found growing in an old library room. The entire area was declared a bio-hazard and was mysteriously burned to ash.
  •  
    Long before the Seven Day War, when T'kalia's love was strong and he still had power in his body, he crafted the most wondrous gift for Xiuthan; a tree imbued with his power over time. In this tree flowed a crystalline sap that would trap any sounds spoken near it, quietly playing them back for the rest of time. It is said that this tree contained T'kalias first confession of love.
    Kazcallen folk lore

    Birth

    Born on the 7th day of the 19 Days of Creation.

    Kill Count

    Killed none during The Seven Day War.

    Death

    Died on 4th day of The Seven Day War.

    Killed by

    Killed by Xiuthan in accidental rage.

    Present-day Power


    Movement

    T'kalia never moves, and never shifts positions. He remains so perfectly still that it seems as if he's just a statue -- one that appears to perpetually leak temporal sand, and be in an infinite state of decay.
     

    Creation and Destruction

    Portions of his body appear to rot off, only to vanish in the blink of an eye, as T'kalia remains broken in time itself. Sand endlessly pours from his dry eyes and abdomenal wound, yet never seems to run out, and never overfills the piles at his feet.
     

    Awareness

    Behind his unchanging, sandy coloured eyes, some say that you can see a semblance of awareness lurking, yet most agree there seems to be no evidence to prove this.

    Children

    The Comprilith

    Contrasting to how he thought of Xiuthan, T'kalia's relationship with Rak'tos was completely the opposite; The Tower Duo worked exclusively as project partners, and shared no emotional connection. Whether it was a quirk of their personalities or some deep misunderstanding between the two, there appeared to be a cold barrier between them broken only by the the shared goal of completing The Comprilith.   It's not fully known when construction, or even planning, first began on the Comprilith; yet it had been worked on for thousands of years before The Seven Day War brought the entire project to a halt. The plan was to use T'kalia's power over time to find all information that would ever exist within Cathedris, and use Rak'tos's control over space to form that into knowledge that'd fill the tower. Yet it remains unfinished, and just as broken as its two creator gods that remain nearby.

     

    Frozen at His End of Time

    Tempella, Spear of Time


    A few hundred meters long and said to be containing grains of the past, present, and future inside, Tempella was what T'kalia used to guide himself through time. It's said he could use it to stretch a moment into an eternity, or make any amount of time pass by in the blink of an eye. Currently the spear remains embedded within T'kalia himself; stabbed through his spine and jutting out from his abdomen, pinning T'kalia physically and temporally within his final agonizing moments.    

    Maximum Potential

    T'kalia had a base, constant awareness of large portions of time; however a lot of this information came in at once, and thus was often confusing, jumbled, or clouded. With Tempella, he was able to pinpoint small instances and hone in on them, greatly increasing the accuracy with which he explored the timelines.    

    Current Power

    It's thought that Tempella in combination with T'kalia's own endless agony are the source of the temporal sand that endlessly pours from his wound and eyes. The spear's ability to focus time have instead intensified T'kalia's final moment so strongly that the very essence of twisted time pours from him as a result.  
     
    The carnage, the death, it was so unnatural. It drove her wild. She began to unravel. T'kalia tried to calm her. He left his spear at her feet, in the hopes that she'd see that violence isn't the end here. Yet as T'kalia began to walk away, Xiuthan picked up the spear and hurled it back in a fit of thoughtless rage; the spear flew true and found it's home squarely in T'kalia's back.
    — Day 4 of the Seven Day War
     

    Industry

    Ever piling at T'kalia's feet is the key to untold wealth and knowledge -- should it be harvested, stored, and used correctly. Temporal Sand flows infinitely from T'kalia, pouring into piles that never grow or shrink over time, no matter how long it's been or how much has been harvested. The organization dedicated to the exploration of the Comprilith and Categorization of the findings from within have contracted a portion of the Legion to collect this sand for them; it's stored in glass jars, where depending on the amount within, it will last for up to 3 days.   However, that's not the only reason why the Legion has set up camp around T'kalia's legs; with him being an unmoving, temporally frozen God-husk, he provides an unparalleled opportunity for Ichor extraction in order to fuel Catalurgy and Catalurgical experimentation. In the case of Dimiti, another stationary God-husk, Ichor extraction is still dangerous because of the abundance of Rendlings that form from him. However with T'kalia, there are no Rendlings to worry about; at least, not in the traditional sense. The fungi that have colonized his lower extremities release spores at an astonishing rate, which seem to be perfectly suited to grow within the warm, moist environment of human lungs, where they accelerate the aging process of the new host's internal organs, resulting in their untimely demise.  

    Timeless Worship

    In modern times, T'kalia still sees a large amount of worship. While his followers are most often people from Theah Prieah or other countries on the continent of Enqua, a large portion of scholars and students pray to him regularly as well. Additionally, small pleas and offerings to T'kalia are made on a daily basis around the world, in the form of people wishing for a moment of time to last just a little bit longer.      
     


    Cover image: T'kalia by Stormbril, Background by Katarzyna Gonsior

    Comments

    Author's Notes

    It's my first God-husk since Avartarian! First of hopefully 4 or 5 total this World Ember. But even if it's the only one done, I'm very happy and proud to have completed another.   If you spot any typos or mistake, please feel free to let me know! Otherwise, what do you think of our friend T'kalia here? :D What's your favourite bit of lore regarding him?


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    Dec 21, 2022 01:54 by Aster Blackwell

    Breathtaking design and art as always. I love the pose and agony of this one. He is such a tragic figure, more tragic I would argue than He'an themself! I wonder if something like the Comprilith was even possible to finish. Did he know that it was an unfinishable project, or did he think that some day he'd actually be able to contain all of the knowledge of the world in one tower?

    Dec 21, 2022 02:39 by Stormbril

    Thank you Aster! <3 When starting out with him I didn't expect it to go in such a tragic direction, but the more I wrote the more it fit.   I think he fully believed it would be something he'd finish -- he was likely blinded by his ambition, losing the overall sight and perspective of time, and didn't realize how long it was taking or how long it might take D:

    Dec 21, 2022 01:55 by Chris L

    I love the tragic mythology that you're building. Always glad to hear the story of each of these dead gods.


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    Dec 21, 2022 02:39 by Stormbril

    Thank you so much Kitoy! Their stories are so enjoyable to tell and weave together :)

    Dec 21, 2022 02:04 by Amanda McRoberts

    This looks wonderful! I love the shards floating around the article.

    Dec 21, 2022 07:17

    Another beautiful entry in your world, nicely illustrated and formatted. A great inspiration to continue my own.   One typo I found: "Killed Xiuthan in an accidental fit of rage," should be "Killed [by] Xiuthan in an accidental fit of rage." Easy enough to make mistakes like that within so much text.

    Dec 21, 2022 18:15 by Stormbril

    Why thank you! I'm really glad to hear that :D   And thank you so much for pointing that out! They really are easy to miss, those little missed words or other typos, I do that all the time xD

    Dec 21, 2022 08:17 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

    Poor T'Kalia... :( He sounds like he was one of the nicer gods.   I had a sudden thought: if Tempella has frozen him in time, would taking it out of his body bring him back to life? He's dying of course, but not yet dead :p And being able to communicate with a god even if briefly sounds very tempting - people could even ask him if he knows how to fix the situation with the god husks since he's the god of knowledge! Is this something the people of Cathedris would be tempted to do or is the risk of losing access to the sand of time too much?

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    Dec 21, 2022 18:19 by Stormbril

    Definitely :( A little strange and sort of mostly ignored humanity while he pondered time and the information it'd bring him, but still overall nicer than most!   That is a really good question... I'm not sure if he'd be able to respond, or how long he'd be "alive" still. I think there'd be a large possibility that his mind would be long broken by now, having spent what feels like an eternity to him being stuck in his most tragic painful moment D: He might get a few words out, but I don't think it'd carry much meaning -- though I'm sure scholars would be studying those words for the rest of time.   I bet there's some specific cults or sections of T'kalia worshipers that are planning to attempt to remove Tempella from his body regardless though :D   Thank you for the lovely comment and question!

    Dec 21, 2022 08:27 by Catoblepon

    Quite love the article! T'kalia sounds nice and you made me sad with his dead! I wonder if, while traveling time and knowing a lot of stuff, he knew about the god-husk, his fate? If he did, why did he not try to avoid it?

    Dec 21, 2022 18:21 by Stormbril

    Thank you so much Cato! :D The tragedy of T'kalia seemed to almost write itself, it was destined to be a sad story :(   I think he would have known about his fate, and the fate of all God-husks, had he been properly aware! But his focus on the Comprilith and on Xiuthan likely made it so he never looked in the right place at the right time to see what was coming D:

    Dec 21, 2022 18:46 by Catoblepon
    Dec 21, 2022 18:32 by Barron

    You really set the bar on combining content, design, and presentation. Your god-husks are just flooring. Well done


    Dec 22, 2022 17:09 by Icarus Crow

    Something I can't believe I haven't considered: love betwixt the gods! I love this whole concept, and the art is breathtaking. Well done!

    It's Summer Camp time!!! ~ Icarus
    Dec 22, 2022 22:39 by Stormbril

    Thank you Icarus! It's fun to consider the relationships that may or may not have existed between the gods :D

    Dec 29, 2022 09:55 by TJ Trewin

    Ohhhh wow, depending on the flow that's going to be a looooot of sand! I wonder if people would feel comfortable using it for construction, or trying to move it so he doesn't get buried...   Amazing worldbuilding Stormbril! :D


    Journals of Yesteryear

    Dec 29, 2022 23:00 by Stormbril

    Thank you so much TJ! :D   Luckily (or unluckily for some!) the sand vanishes from existence after a while, so no burying would happen -- I imagine trying to construct stuff out of sand would make for a rude surprise too, when the cement foundation suddenly vanishes a day later xD

    Dec 29, 2022 13:27 by E. Christopher Clark

    I'm a sucker for articles about time—time travel, gods of time, etc.—so this was right up my alley, and the image of the sand pouring from his eyes—both the visual image and the image you conjured with your words—is arresting and beautiful and haunting. Well done!

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    Jan 23, 2023 06:12 by Tara Fae Belle

    There's so much to like about this article! Awesome work! But probably what kept my attention and curiosity most were the temporal sands and the relationships between T'kalia, Xiuthan and Rak'tos.

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    Jan 23, 2023 18:07 by Stormbril

    Thank you so much! I'm glad those parts resonated, I think that was my favourite part to write about it too!

    Jan 28, 2023 15:35 by Secere Laetes

    Well, I took this article now about a god, but actually here could be virtually anyone you wrote on WE or before. I just really like the articles. Apart from the graphics, I like the fact that the articles are relatively short and contain everything important, but still remain mysterious. Moreover, the articles are simply fundamental for the world and its feeling. And this special info for patrons is also really well embedded. I was quite tempted by it.

    Feb 5, 2023 22:52 by Stormbril

    Thank you so much! <3 The God-husks will always be some of my favourite things to create, and I'm glad they're enjoyable in this form. And I'm also glad to hear the Patreon is tempting :D

    Jun 28, 2023 21:55 by JRR Jara

    I loved the art and little snippets. He will remain forever in unrequited love, killed by his loved one. wow so sad :(

    Creator of Hanzelot and many more.
    Jul 4, 2023 23:08 by Stormbril

    His story is definitely one of tragedy :( but it was a joy to write and create, so thank you! :D

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