War of World's End: A Cinematic Retelling Document in Etharai | World Anvil

War of World's End: A Cinematic Retelling

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This article was created for my Species-A-Day project for 2024! Read more here!
Content Warning: This article contains meantions or implications of: nuclear war, nuclear weaponry, chemical warfare
Please note that story is not an accurate historical document. This retelling is purely for entertainment purposes, and does not claim to inform the reader on the true events of the War. For historically-accurate information, the War of World's End is documented elsewhere.
All characters and events in this story - even those based on real-life events - are purely fictional. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is coincidental.
We set the scene in an Etharai on the brink of war. Her people have never been so divided, so separated. Talks-with-Power, leader of the kuuyik government, was at odds with Theialat'iousti'treakal, the leader of the peiktar. In their people, tensions stirred1.
Families are restless, not able to get enough food to feed their children and themselves. Those who couldn't find a way to earn their food turned to stealing, first to survive, but then to thrive.

Walks-in-Silence was one such person, dancing between the shadows and alleyways of the city he called home. Known as Tiaktar City, it was one of the most expansive settlements on the planet, home to many kuuyikar of different varieties. There were no members of other species living there, however2. The borderig nations looked down upon the kuuyikar for their cultures and customs, and the kuuyikar looked down upon them in turn.

Which made it somewhat strange that Walks-in-Silence was seeing a fthast in front of him. A people whose nation was on the brink of collapse3, he had no doubt they'd found refuge here - though the process by which they had entered the country was another question entirely. He approached them, unsure of how they'd react, and the fthast startled. Walks-in-Silence introduced themselves as the fthast seemed to calm down, offering their name in turn: Lethar4.

The two talked, learning more about one another. They were not as different as Walks-in-Silence had imagined the other species to be. For a moment, the two forgot the brewing wars and simply were friends.
Walks-in-Silence's family did not like this. All they had heard was that their son had made friends with a fthast, something unheard of5.
But Walks-in-Silence did not care, and has he grew up, he remained friends with this antennaed individual, as they both learned much from one another. But unlike their friendship, the precarious peace around them was beginning to unsettle. Walks-in-Silence began to realise a war was eminent, and as an adult now, he knew this meant that he could not be seen with Lethar. Lethar pretended to understand, but in truth was hurt about losing his closest and only friend.

The fthast home country had rebuilt along the years, and Lethar returned home, dejected. Enlisting in his country's military force, he knew he wanted to do something to change the world. He thought the brewing war would give him the change - a chance to forge a new path for the world, one paved with peace instead of broken friendships.

Meanwhile, Walks-in-Silence could no longer deny his birthright. An assassination attempt had claimed the life of his father, and as Talks-with-Power died, Walks-in-Silence had no choice but to take his place leading the kuuyikar, the son of their leader bringing the nation together6. And Walks-in-Silence knew that he needed to get revenge on the nation that had stolen his father from him.

He poured all of his resources into finding the killer, and his people worked quickly and efficiently. Almost too efficiently, however, as what he found snapped his heart in two. His old childhood friend, the one that he had cut off all those years ago, had killed his father on behalf of the fthast government.
And now it was personal.

It was not long before the kuuyikar found a reason to declare war on the fthastyr. Capitalising on the conflict, the peiktari joined the war on the side of the fthastyr, and quickly outnumbered the kuuyikar had to pull in allies. This chain reaction of alliances led to an all-out planetary war, and its original ground long forgotten but a few years in. Peace was looking further and further away, as the planet itself began to weep. And so Etharai slept, in the hopes that she would wake to a better world.

Not long after, Walks-in-Silence had lost near everyone he cared about. The planet was being destroyed by all of the measures he had deemed essential, and his people were dying day after day in this war that he regretted starting more and more as time progressed. He sat in his chambers, to numb to weep at the sight below, when the doors creaked open.

He thought it to be his generals, waving them off to mope. As the presence remained, he thought it to be his advisors, and he told them he didn't need their advice. But as the presence stood, Walks-in-Silence turned around, and could not describe the emotions he felt at the sight before him.

A tear ran down his cheek as his face ran red hot in anger. Before him stood his childhood friend, Lathar, who had somehow survived the war thus far. In Lathar's hand they held a single small weapon, no doubt the one used to kill Walks-in-Silence's father. In a defeated tone, he asked in Lathar was there to kill him - a query to which the fthast responded only with a single shake of the head. Still on guard, the kuuyik king asked what Lathar was doing there, and Lathar said they wanted to negotiate a ceasefire.

This was a pointless desire, and they both knew it. Too many nations had gotten involved, too many warmongering generals and power-hungry leaders had their hands all stuck in the same now-mutilated pie. But he entertained the notion for a while, as the single way to keep himself sane. Lathar came to sit beside him, as the conversation turned from current topics to remniscing on their past.

Neither of them had wanted it to go this way. Lathar had not known that is was Walks-in-Shadow's father that he had killed, nor had he wanted to kill him in the first place - his country had forced his hand. And it all spiraled out of control far too quickly, upsetting the delicate balance of what the nations had called peace.
Walks-in-Shadow finally understood what had happened, standing ready to accept his friend once more. And as they embraced, he felt a warmth in his back, a sharp pain. Liquid spilling to the floor, he looked down to see blood - his own blood.

And he knew then that peace would never come.

And so the war raged on, until tree and leaf, bird and nest, and all other life on the planet had been killed. As the nations killed each other, those who'd had the foresight to hide and remain neutral began to emerge from their hiding spots. The world in ruins, they had no clue what to do with it.

A scientific disambiguation of the facts of the War

  1. There is no evidence for the existence of kuuyikar or peiktari nations that existed before the War, nor do we know the names of their leaders. It is highly unlikely for either of these proposed nations to have existed.
  2. There is, in fact, evidence that the majority of Etharyan cities were fairly cosmopolitan, especially those larger.
  3. There are no records of a country of fthastyr anywhere in our knowledge of the World Before, nor any reason it would be on the brink of collapse.
  4. This is not a realistic fthast name. It has likely been included for ease of pronunciation by non-fthast readers.
  5. Friendships between species were fairly common, even before the War. The implication that they would have been discouraged is incorrect.
  6. There is not any evidence to suggest that the rulers of any of the nations before the War had lineage-based succession.

Cover image: Person Near Fire by Pixabay


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Dec 10, 2023 16:12 by Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull

The footnotes really added to this. It may have been rather inaccurate, but it was a good story! Sad though :(

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
Dec 10, 2023 16:37 by spleen

thank you!

Have a wonderful day!