All Around the Birdcage Document in Totania | World Anvil
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All Around the Birdcage

All Around the Birdcage is a novel written by the High Elf named Imvis about the Draconian conflict he witnessed firsthand, the Chief Crisis.  

Sections of the Book

The book All Around the Birdcage is a series of vignettes and accounts of different parts of the Chief Crisis. The sections are as follows:  
Nalrik Tilrak by Jarhed

The Clashing Legacy

Nalrik Tilrak was the son of Fepar Tilrak, the leader of the Army of the Revolution. Fepar also intervened in the Chief Crisis to stop his old adoptive son, who had taken in Fepar, Ikkul Ravofarn of Bortan. Ikkul was the one who was the leading force in the war, and was also who Imvis happened to be interning under when the Chief Crisis started.   However, there is no positive view of Ikkul in here. He is portrayed as a rather violent and hateful man, though he is also loving. Imvis's portrayal here, as it is his own, is rather unbiased, as he had no stake in this war.   This section follows Nalrik Tilrak, even with some personal accounts, though mostly from Imvis's perspective, as he deals with his two warring fathers and living up to both of their legacies until, ultimately, he becomes Chief and helps stop the war.   It features a firsthand account of the Tsar Bomba, a large explosion caused by Ikkul as his final move to finish off Fepar, which actually killed him instead. A stylish ending, for sure, and effective. Still, it did not succeed in its initial purpose. Still, there was a love in it that protected Nalrik from its effects, so he was able to stand in it and live. The accounts in this section are from both Nalrik and Imvis himself, with Nalrik's account going as such:
Imvis by Jarhed

Chief Crisis

The Chief Crisis was a war between all of the Draconian Villages for their Chief to become Grand Wizard There were many sides to this conflict, being:
"It was horrifying but beautiful. My father stabbed himself in the chest, my village... my home began to disintegrate as this explosion stretched around us and into the sky. Everything I had ever known began to fade to nothingness, but I still felt it around me. That love, that warmth. He was keeping me safe. Even in his final moments, my father's love was in that spell. His love... and his hatred."
— Nalrik Tilrak
  It also features Nalrik's battle in Yirthum against Captain Farcorin, Nalrik convincing future Chief of Yirthum Jargar Eltan to side with him and make peace, Nalrik's training under the Korvian Rider, and Nalrik teaming up with his classmates to stop the Chiefs. It then features a firsthand account of Grand Wizard Salasar Feaphed killing the Chiefs and ending the war.  
The Professor by Jarhed

Burnt Out

Burnt Out is a section following The Professor, a Tamdian Drug Lord who tormented the capital city of Zephys, and the various victims of his drug Burnout, which ravaged the city hard during the war.   People took it hoping to protect themselves, their family, and their city from the forces of Tamd. The Drug boosted their magical power for a short amount of time, but then cut them off from their connection to their magic, making them unable to use any mana. A short burst of power for a lifetime of weakness. That was all some people believed they needed to keep what they wanted safe safe. But this was not the case, as the war continued on past the time limit of Burnout. Therefore, it did more harm than good.   The Professor was seemingly defeated or killed by Oraakil Mardaar during the Chief Crisis. However, his effect was still felt by the people of Zephys, and his name became infamous in the history books. Part of this is thanks to Imvis's account of the man himself, as well as his victims.   This section ends with a passage that speaks on its effects on the war, and how this connects to the world's greatest problem. A problem that persisted still, that made Burnout simply a byproduct. A problem that made even the Professor himself a victim, for Totania in its entirety suffered from this.
"The war pushed everyone to their limits. Some were more ready than others, and those others suffered for it. They had no time to understand. The desperate struggled for a saving grace, and found it at the bottom of a bottle of Burnout. This, too, betrayed them. In the safety they sought, they only found more danger. Now, the world is tired. Always, always... there is a better solution than to be burnt out. There is always patience, pacing oneself and taking breaks; perhaps if everyone were to follow this, there would be peace. Peace of mind, peace of spirit, and peace on the planet."
— Imvis
Shatt Gunn by genuinetrickster

Caged In

Caged in is a section of the book on the Birdcage of Zephys, created by Tamd Chief Ilxar Nimphonker and his assisstant Rharked the Rogue Monion. This was put around the city of Zephys to trap the Grand Wizard in, but actually became a way for Salasar to keep his citizens safe from the war.   The section features accounts from the two heroes of the Battle of the Birdcage, Ogonn Ha and Shatt Gunn. Students in the Class of 550 at the Magic College. Here is a quote from Shatt about what he thought of the Birdcage going up:
"I mean I didn't question it at first. It seemed fine. Then it wasn't."
— Shatt Gunn
  Life went on mostly as usual in the Birdcage, aside from the Burnout usage of the citizens. This story is a lot about school life, and moreso the final battle of the war, the Battle of the Birdcage.   In this battle, Shatt faced off against the Alchemist Zasagur to save his mother, Shatlita Gunn, while Ogonn Ha defeated Rharked Monion and took down the Birdcage. There are even some stories of their other friends helping out, like Lorakaen Darelor, Murphy Law, Kathleen Ramone, and Finethir Shinebright. It also features a tale of a crushing defeat to Ilxar Nimphonker, and being saved by a group led by Nalrik Tilrak and including Imvis himself, along with the star of the next section. A Human man by the name of Vodron Susk.  
Vodron Susk by Jarhed

Destruction of Ealla

The Destruction of Ealla is the term used for the battle that took place in the Bardic Village of Ealla during the Chief Crisis, between the forces of Yirthum and Ealla.   It was a massacre, with all but one intern from Ealla (A Devil named Mastema) dying, half of the village being destroyed, and the Chief being forced to flee. But the main attraction in this section is the man that destroyed Ealla, the Human named Vodron Susk. A soldier of Yirthum and one of Imvis's own classmates.   There are some personal accounts from Vodron about what led up to the Destruction of Ealla: Training, an affair, and a rivalry with a Crocution named Ummum. However, when it switches to the destruction of Ealla at Vodron's hands, it is accounts from the citizens themselves.   An anonymous source, which some believe to be former Chief Sirlini Glirdog, is the main voice of this section, talking about how horrible the massacre was. How monstrous Vodron acted, and how it was only her who was able to stop him. The only way people believe it is Sirlini is that throughout these horrible events, there are jokes scattered in to lighten the mood. Sirlini is called the Comedian after all. However, she is presumed dead, so this is likely not her.  
Sinner Caerxan by Jarhed

Ghost of Entertainment

Ghost of Entertainment is a sidestory about the Village of Waire, which was part of the war that was isolated in the Elven Forest for much of the Chief Crisis.   The story is filled with accounts, mostly from Sinner and Cozall Redfury about what happened to keep them trapped in Waire while the war was going on. Sinner in specific goes on about soldiers dying whenever they tried to enter or leave, and about a
Dresmorlin Cobath by Jarhed
Vampire named Dresmorlin Cobath.   This story is treated with a bit of skepticism, with some chalking it up to paranoia or PTSD from the war. However, Sinner and Cozall both swear that the man Dresmorlin Cobath does exist, and Cozall, being an artist, even featured an illustration of the silhoutte, which has since become quite an iconic symbol of Vampires in the media.  
Otikul Nurdesh by Jarhed

A Dream of Eggs

The final section of note is one from the Magic College Historian, Magic History Professor and Chief of Dembar Otikul Nurdesh. Otikul was the only Chief not to declare war on Salasar, and was by Salasar's side the entire war.   Therefore, this section reads not just as an account of what the Grand Wizard was going for, but also the personal feelings of a Chief during the war, as all the others died by the end. Otikul is rather light in his tone for much of it, but it does not undermine his point: The Chiefs were not just enemies of the state. They were men going through a traumatic event in history, and they had no choice but to be at the center of it.   Otikul puts specific focus on a set of Dragon Eggs, one of every color. Salasar gifted one to each of the Chiefs years before the Chief Crisis, yet they had not yet hatched. They were kept hidden away for years by all the Chiefs as a trump card, something they could pull out against Salasar. A symbol of hope.   But in truth, they were fake eggs that Salasar had crafted to trick them. These eggs were ultimately the Chiefs undoing, because this one hope they had was all a lie, and they died to Salasar anyway. Otikul now holds those eggs, and says that he holds their hope now that they are gone. He is the Final Chief, after all. So he must share their hopes, hold their dreams. A dream for a better future. A Dream of Eggs.

Cover image: by Ogio


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