BUILD YOUR OWN WORLD Like what you see? Become the Master of your own Universe!

Cloud of Ash

by hughpierre


The skin appears dry and cracked, though skin dryness isn’t always to blame. Though, the truth is that no one can say what causes the Cloud.


It is common for skin to scale after prolonged sun exposure. Therefore, it might have been rational to blame the violet sun.   If not for the fact no other group in the Floodlands display the effects.
As the disease seems to be confined to those from a particular blood group. The next thought becomes that it is an inherited weakness in themselves.   However, the Ash does occur in individuals far away from the Ñuñu Hills without known relations. 
Blame as fallen onto the tiny worms, mites and spongers that swim in the flood waters and bury themselves under the skin that leave the discolouring rash.   But that does not explain why it would only target the cloud.
For lack of any other explanation, a fungal foundation or some other miasma capable of crossing borders as become the dominant theory for transmission.   Though its unclear how it could bypass all other states in the same region.


Cloud of Ash gets its name from the constant shedding of the victim's outer layer of skin in large, scale-like flakes.
  • Pinkish Rash
  • Iching
  • Dryness
  • Flaky skin


As tempting as it may be, it is heavily advised to pull the peeling skin off. Instead, allow it to slough off the body on its own.
  1. Take pain relievers as needed
  2. Use a soothing balm
  3. Take regular cool baths
  4. Be gentle with your skin
  5. Make a cool compress
  6. Stay as hydrated as possible
  7. Keep the skin covered

Hosts & Carriers

Cloud Clans

It cannot be seen by looking at them, but the Cloud population is culturally homogeneous. Any group of related individuals possess different shades of eyes, skin and hair among themselves so it can be difficult for outsiders to say whose related to who.  
The cloud clans are thought of as an indisputably beautiful people. Cloud people are generally of a lighter disposition than other groups, which in itself is not odd, except that their skin carries tinges of pink, blue, grey and yellowness.
  Their origin tells tales during the Keanian era which describes themselves as being plainly white until the Keans introduced the colours of their world to them. Ordinarily, such a story would have been thought of as being metaphorical, but given the clans are a mix of multiple atypical colours; it is inferred that the hornkins introduced an unknown element into the environment.


Painted Plagues

It is told that through some unknown and malevolent force, the governor of Gaioor sought to gain a kingdom of his own. And in answer, a deluge of diseases crossed over from the Cold Swamp and, one after another, laid waste to the administrative framework across the empire's cities, coastal colonies and the capital itself.   In an attempt to save itself, the cizin banished those afflicted to the belly at the point of the spear. These masses of people would never be seen again.

Cultural Reception

Painted Diseases

Contrary to the other plagues, Ash drains the colour from a specifically beautiful people. When it first made its appearance in the Imperium Cloud,‌ many people were made very self-conscious, particularly if it occurred on their hands, feet, face, or other visible areas.   Later on, as the effects became less extreme in the cloud's descendants, more colour returned to the clans, albeit in a more subdued tinge than was before. The smoggy clan, however, would never recover their hues.

Condition | Aug 3, 2020
  Alternate Names
  • The Cloud
  • The Ash
Chronic, Congenital
Affected Species
Species | Mar 13, 2024

Cover image: Star Dust by Ludovic Florent


Please Login in order to comment!
Dec 12, 2020 20:29 by R. Dylon Elder

Oooo man I hope you won't mind if I shout out your articles in my next world ember post. I've been loving your work this year. Any particular one you want attention on cause it's hard to choose lol while I'm here lemme just say this condition is really cool. I love how simple and believable it is and yet the air of mystery it has with the bolded statements bringing up what certain theories fail to explain. Well done.

Dec 12, 2020 22:26

I don't mind at all. I've read many your works and I'm impressed with how you manage your elaborate worlds. I'm going to be starting work on a few new worlds next year, so any attention you could bring to them would be appreciated.   And thanks for all the great criticisms.