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Deru Deru, The Delegate

We the people.
— Deru Deru
 

Early Days

Before Birth

Below the waves of the Nausen Sea dwelt the Abyssal settlement of Taimdun. A relatively isolated place built around a slumbering Tectonic. For years, displaced refugees had been steadily flowing into Taimdun. Economic strain was soon felt and disagreement on how to handle the problem arose. Geographically, a single narrow channel connected the ocean to the Nausen Sea. There was no way in or out without the express permission of the Taimdunian military. As bureaucracy came to a grinding halt, newcomer immigrants were denied passageway. They established camps that then turned to makeshift shanty towns. Within Taimdun, urban protesting became rampant and soon erupted into violence. The incident resulted in 42 casualties and over 300 injured individuals and was dubbed "Tebexin's Skirmish". The chamberlain that presided over Taimdun declared martial law. At the cusp of societal collapse, an empyral woman known as Arsunik, descended from above. Coinciding with her arrival were seismic tremors caused by the resident Tectonic stirring in his sleep. In Abyssic culture, such phenomenon were seen as good omens as the Abyssic embraced the unknown.  

Uniting A People

My mother said that the threads would never lead us astray.
I still believe that.
— Deru Deru

The Aggregate

Arsunik proposed to the Taimdunian chamberlain a telepathic system that would connect all individuals and allow information to be shared and empathy felt on an unprecedented level. The system, now dubbed "The Aggregate", was wholeheartedly embraced by the chamberlain and Taimdunians. Only a handful of citizens refused to join. Once established, the Aggregate's nexus of information was then available to all members with no restrictions. Every thought, memory, and emotion now was indiscriminately accessible. As old secrets came to light, so too did forgiveness. Every individual could now directly feel first-hand the thoughts and emotions of another as vividly as their own. Thus the pathosocracy was born.  

The Delegate

 
As I opened my eyes for the very first time, an unyielding amount of information surged against me. Amongst the turbulence, a hand emerged and beckoned me towards tranquility. To understand what I am, to understand who I am, you must understand our history.
— Deru Deru
  Arsunik fashioned a phantom known as "The Delegate". They served as the voice of the Aggregate. The Delegate would probe into the informational swaths of the nexus and emerge with a verdict deemed fit by all members. In order to communicate these verdicts, the Delegate required a host body. A consenting, compatible individual would be chosen to share their body with the Delegate and act as their anchor to the material world. When a current host died, the Delegate would find a new host body to co-inhabit.
  When young, the Delegate was extremely impressionable to the influential will of the Aggregate. Their identity began as a reflection of Taimdun's psyche. The Aggregate ingrained the thoughts, morals, and feelings of its peoples onto the Delegate. However, in time, the Delegate's sense of self strengthened. They developed a unique individualized sense of self. This eventually resulted in establishing a feedback loop with the Aggregate itself. The Delegate spoke to the Aggregate, and the Delegate spoke for the Aggregate.
 

Impact

The Pathosocracy

The pathocracy is an open decentralized system, the Delegate was created to merely act as the entity to voice the verdicts of the collective sum, it has no more authority or control over the system than any other member. Clauses/(Amendments) are the only method of large scale changes being enacted system-wide. Its establishment completely revolutionized Taimdunian society. The settlement operated akin to a superorganism. Each individual a small part of a greater whole. Every role in society fulfilled and a balance achieved. The Delegate merely served as the concise voice of the Aggregate. Despite being connected so deeply to one another, every member had a sense of self. Information in the Aggregate was not a mere hivemind, it was more akin to a massive archival domain. It granted all members unrestricted access to its contents as well as providing them with the most vivid experiences involving empathy. With every subsequent additional generation, the collective sum of the Aggregate's knowledge and experience increased exponentially. Lifetime's worth of knowledge became available to the youngest of members. Taimdun went from a city on the edge of collapse to a center of prosperity. Self-actualization, group-actualization, and mutual benefaction all became the new core values of Taimdun, and by extension, the core values of the Delegate. Thus the economic struggles of the past were quelled by the Delegate.  

Seismic Awakening

When the embryonic Tectonic awoke, he was greeted into the world by the Delegate, who dubbed him "Unikhexa". After long discussion with the Delegate, Unikhexa began to act upon the natural inclination of Tectonics, expansion of his plate. This triggered increased activity in all nearby geothermal vents. Taimdun's economy thrived and the Nausen Sea was now gradually expanding as Unikhexa pushed against the surrounding plates, widening his own plate. The gradual spatial growth of the Nausen and increased geothermal activity allowed for the economy to also grow continuously, yet avoid stagnation.  

The Statute of Limited Memoria Clause

As the years passed, as with all living things, the eldest of the Abyssic denizens reached the end of their natural lifespan and began to die. However, their memory threads were still woven into the Aggregate and thus made an impact upon the Delegate's verdicts. It was called into question how to deal with the opinions of those now deceased and thus no longer inhabiting the world. There was a desire to honor those who came before, but also not to allow the Aggregate to become entrenched with hundreds of years worth of opinions from a bygone time. An agreement was levied and reached. A statute of limitations clause was enacted into the system. After a decade’s time, the deceased person’s memory strand would be deactivated and stashed away into an archive accessible to all.  

Cascade

Due to the interconnected nature of the Aggregate, intense emotions or thoughts have the potential to cascade across it. The outrage stirred by the assassination of the Delegate's beloved sixth host by an outsider was one such occurrence. The thought of military retaliation against the home state of the assassination was an idea that grew in prominence. However, it was the Delegate who was able to quell the people's anger. Through persuasion, the Delegate successfully changed their minds.  

Isolationism

Instead of the initial idea of militant retaliation, the unsavory experience led to the Taimdunians turning their back on the outside world. All commercial trade ceased and only approved diplomatic visitors were allowed admission into the city. Self-sufficiency became the priority of Taimdun, freeing it from dependence on any foreign power. Thus, the Aggregate has remained strictly neutral in the war between the Kotien Candlelight and Abyssic peoples. The Delegate, and by extension the denizens of Taimdun, are not blind to the plight faced by those under Kotien rule, but neither can justify the risks that are to be had if they were to intervene.  

Arising Canards

The longer Taimdun has remained isolated, the more enriched both the extravagant tales and the dark legends became. Many found the existence of the Delegate to be unsettling and dangerous. Some fearing the Taimdunians as being puppets led astray by a dark god. Other outsiders came to revere the Delegate as a deity incarnate. Heretic cults have arisen throughout the world's oceans, worshipping their envisionment of the Delegate. Diplomatic visitors often found the Delegate to be one of the few "well-adjusted" individuals within Taimdun. This is due to many Taimdunians having found vocalized speech to be tedious, as well as the practice of explaining in depth what one means to say is ludicrous.  

Pact of Kindred Flames

As tensions have increased between the Kotien Candlelight and outsider Abyssic peoples, it was the Delegate who proposed a mutual declaration of neutrality with the Candlelight city of Xajohirsen. Since the signing of the pact, the Delegate has formed friendships with the various politicians of Xajohirsen and has attended several social festivities.
I created all artworks featured in this article
Species: Corporeal Abyssic, Phantom
Born: 3492 AG (2472 years old)

Religious Impact

HazelAsh Taimdun Mural
The Mother
The Aggregate
The Molten Child
  The empyral known as Arsunik, the Tectonic known as Unikhexa, and the Delegate were three extremely prominent figures in Taimdunian society post-advent of the Aggregate.   Arsunik served as a motherly figure to the Delegate in the early years. Arsunik was revered for bringing peace and prosperity to the city. Despite being offered numerous gifts, she lived humbly while there. Her sole focus was raising the Delegate. Bestowing upon them, and by extension all of the Aggregate, the swaths of her acquired knowledge. However, a generation later, she was seemingly spirited away one night. The Delegate, the Aggregate itself, still mourns her disappearance, and has remained vigilant for her even as centuries have passed.   The Tectonic Unikhexa awoke shortly after Arsunik's disappearance. The hulking 50 meter being was greeted by the Delegate and Taimdunians, all bearing gifts, rare metals and valuable minerals. The highest gift was a forge hammer, made of refined kotghir. The tool was built by elite Candlelight artisans, all of which were commissioned by the Delegate. Immediately, Unikhexa had grown fond of the "tiny water dwelling peoples". His hammer accelerated the pace in which he could expand his plate, further empowering the Taimdunian economy. In a cultural relationship, the members of the Aggregate have come to see Unikhexa as their son. A "child" that brings immense pride to the people. This sentiment is not one sided as Unikhexa views the Nausen with sentimental attachment. He would defend the Taimdunians at any cost. Thus, he's effectively a living superweapon that protects the domain of Nausen.  

Historical Eras

It rapidly became a cultural novelty to divide Taimdunian history based on the host of the Delegate. By the present, there have been 13 "host eras".
Host Name Duration
(in years)
1st Agnatha 112
2nd Arapaima 212
3rd Warehou 67
4th Cirrhus 83
5th Undula 314
6th Seriolella 17
7th Leer 144
8th Hehring 241
9th Hapuka 226
10th Mahi 361
11th Geelbek 305
12th Morwong 346
13th Wrasse 44*
*denotes current host
Children

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Comments

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3 Oct, 2019 16:50

I have to say, I've had to read the intro a few times. It has an influx of information that could definitely use some explanation. A definition of terms for example, would be amazing. It might be that my english is simply lacking here, but I cannot tell if this is a story of an individual or an entire movement. It seems to tell a very detailed and well written story, but it feels like you really need a lot of context to really appreciate it.

11 Oct, 2019 07:06

I took your feedback and tried to apply it best I could. Restructuring parts, especially the intro, to be easier for a first-time reader. Thank you for the kind words and feedback, both are invaluable!