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  • Ellisandro
    Ellisandro  53 mins ago

    But you can only know FOIG doesn’t exist by FOIG thus proving its existence.

  • Thranduil Greenleaf
    Thranduil Greenleaf  1 hour ago

    FOIG is a lie.

  • Ellisandro
    Ellisandro  1 hour ago

    I'd like to say FOIG!

  • Dizzy-D2
    Dizzy-D2  5 hours ago

    Anyone else having issue with Trusty storage?

  • FlowerGolem
    FlowerGolem  17 hours ago

    Please someone casts "Raise dead" on the server. wink

  • wisdombeyondages
    wisdombeyondages  18 hours ago

    Unfortunately due to some unexpected RL events I won't be able to host Loreseekers tonight! We will be getting together again next Sunday after NN

  • Cuchuwyn
    Cuchuwyn  22 hours ago

    There will be a nature night in a little over 3 hours from this post! Hope to see you there!

  • Kat
    Kat  1 day ago

    Since the rework I am finding forums are very slow to load pages.

  • TheSiteMaster
    TheSiteMaster  1 day ago

    Given the many other fixes and features we need that one is pretty low priority. I've gotten a lot of feedback that the hours ago is useful for event alerts.

    Not saying we won't do it, but other things come first since formatting the chatbox easily is already difficult.

  • wisdombeyondages
    wisdombeyondages  1 day ago

    could we get a date stamp for chatbox? not just an "hours ago"?

The Island of Thain :: Forums :: Off-Topic :: Music, Books, Films and TV
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A kind of thank you
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LAN_402 LAN_403
9:38:42 pm GMT 05/08/19
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
Epilogue: Present

Crowds cheered in the way only a truly adoring mob can cheer. Flower petals flew into the air and the huge choir began their song of congratulation and delight. Outside on the street in front of the Central Circle, black birds were released in flocks and the massive audience gathered there made a noise even louder than the one coming from inside MOON ROOM.

On the balcony overlooking the street stood Simoon and Kafy, dressed in the most costly and ostentatious clothes the city had to offer. They gleamed and flowed and dripped and shimmered expensively, and for a few minutes graciously lapped up the adulation as they were expected to do.

After a while though, and calling out apologies and thanks, they glittered smoothly indoors to join the huge throng of specially-chosen revellers, well-wishers and potential benefactors. Everyone had come to celebrate the official wedding and dedication of Eshimoon Warindja Makishai and Kafiyu Lembiya Selemersa not only at the start of their life together, but at the founding of a new Obsidian City family: Ngyakiya.

Saiyali and Bethifika were standing together, clapping and cheering with some other Ngyakiya family and friends, as their new matriarch and patriarch Kafiyu and Eshimoon ambled down the balcony staircase arm in arm and made their way sparklingly to take their place at the head of the gathering.

The cheering and clapping subsided, and everybody sat themselves in order on the firm and silky cushions spread around the tables that filled the space from edge to edge and corner to corner. Hundreds of people had been invited and according to tradition, food was also being served to the enormous crowd of local well-wishers outside.

''I do love a big wedding!'' laughed Bethifika as she raised a glass to Saiyali.

Saiyali grinned back and answered, ''My first one, Fika! I must say I like it so far!''

They laughed and ate and drank and felt honoured to be part of something that felt truly momentous. The city didn't acquire a new great family every day, but thanks to the posthumous support of Saliki Nashivaar for her adopted daughter's new business ventures – and the generosity shown in several documents bearing her seal that were found in her personal archives – the new family was well prospected for success.

Saiyali and Bethifika both refilled their glasses and raised them towards their gracious hosts, who were sitting not far in front of them.

Saiyali called out, ''I do not approve – Mama, Baba – Fah! But I do wish you the best in all endeavours, eh?''

Kafy laughed and answered, ''Indeed, eh?'' enjoying the ironic fitness of her own well-honed accent, and playing up to her new role with glee. Friends around her laughed; more drinks were toasted and gulped. Bethifika raised her own glass and called out, ''Th' biggest name's got t' begin somewhere!''

Simoon called back, ''Exactly!'' and stood up, knocking on the table in front of him and calling for silence. ''Please! Friends! First of all, thank you! Thank you—'' He pointed at one shouting face not far to his left, ''—Yes, you too Mifele! No – thanks to everybody – really – for just – being here. To celebrate with us not just our love—'' he leaned down to kiss Kafy and they stayed gently nibbling each other for several seconds as lewd cheers rose around them. Simoon went on as he stood up straight again, ''—but also our new-founded Family! Ngyakiyasi – where are you all?''

Dozens of people – all the official members of the new family Ngyakiya, their paperwork completed and submitted and stamped earlier that very day – cheered out loud. Several drinks glasses flew across the room, prompting yet more cheers and a few warning cries.

Simoon held his hands up for quiet and amazingly, the raucous crowd obeyed. ''I won't keep you from your food for long, because I know you're all starving, right?—'' more laughs, and Simoon's hands flew up again. ''—I just want to say this! We're all of us destined to end at nothing. We all know it, and that's the reason we value family – right?—'' There rose more huge cheers.

Simoon went on, more slowly and seriously, ''—because family is bigger than any one of us – it goes on longer than any one of us – generations of time, on and on till everyone here is long forgotten. Not just a connective, that comes and goes with the people who make it and changes with every generation – we make a family because then our names can live on – after we die and we're long since dispersed into sky and earth. Our descendants keep us alive through the names we pass them – and we can only hope they don't go on to shame those names!'' He grinned to the gathering, winked at Kafy, and finally raised his glass high and called out, ''So! Here's to not being forgotten – and many honourable children!''

The crowd roared and everybody drank again. Simoon sat back down, Kafy raised her hand as a gesture to someone far at the other side of the room, and food began being served.
Saiyali was keeping an eye on the light outside as she ate and drank carefully, not allowing herself to get too full or become intoxicated. She was happily cheering and bantering, and passing comments with Bethifika on the attractiveness – or otherwise – of all the guests they could see from where they were sitting.

Bethifika noticed Saiyali's abstemiousness at one point when she went to fill her glass; Saiyali shook her head. ''No, thanks Fika. Not for me, not just now.'' Bethifika frowned, confused.

''But Saiya – 's a wedding! An' not every day y' get a whole new name!'' She raised her glass earnestly. ''Ngyakiya – ah, it's th' least we could do f' her, ah?''

Saiyali nodded and raised her own glass, nodding and replying in a low voice, ''I'll be glad when I can wear it officially. '' She gave Bethifika a confidential wink and added gleefully, and louder, ''Then, I'll have a lovely long name – like a Mama!''

Bethifika sneered, but answered with a chuckle, ''Ah – go on then wi' y' lovely long name!''

Saiyali cleared her throat and raised her own glass as if toasting herself. ''Saiyali Bilandu'te Saliki'we Nashivaar Ngyakiya'' She grinned, but with a joking wink to Bethifika added heartily, ''What a truly lovely name that is—''

Bethifika raised her own glass with a sincere and meaningful stare into Saiyali's eyes. ''An' so long!'' But she couldn't stop herself bursting into a fit of giggles, and Saiyali joined in with relish. Finally, Bethifika shook her head and cajoled, ''Saiya – go on, have a proper drink; y' know they got th' best – an' they actually bought it, too! 'S got t' be worth a real toast, ah?''

Saiyali nodded and smiled gently. ''Don't worry – I'm keeping a bottle for later. I've got an appointment tonight, so for now I need to stay – sensible''

Bethifika laughed. ''I understand – work work work, ah?'' She raised her glass again cheerfully. ''Then thank y' f' not including me in whatever it is, I'm planning t' be in no fit state!'' She laughed again and took a deep drink.

Saiyali sipped delicately as Bethifika raised her glass towards Kafy and blew a cheeky kiss in her direction with a grin. She smiled to herself as she recalled what this same Bethifika had told her once, in what seemed like another world; in a little old house next to the roaring grey ocean.

Nobody knows who they are; everyone thinks they're just a story.

But they're not.

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9:43:59 pm GMT 05/08/19
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
[The Book]

The book lay on its back on the beach, spine broken and both covers glued to the grey sand by sticky sea weeds and a crust of salt. The pages waved and flapped in the wind, as if it was trying desperately to throw itself piece by piece into the sky.

Another page tore loose and was borne aloft, flying and tumbling on the gale over dune and grass and this time landing on a spiny, scrubby little bush where it flapped hopelessly. Finally by its own flapping and jerking it was pierced all over and ended up stretched tightly across the thorns; any passer by – however unlikely in this remote and windswept stretch of the Sea Heath – might have been able to read quite easily as they passed:

Pocket Guide to the Empire (2284 edition)

Congratulations on purchasing A Pocket Guide to the Empire! We are certain you will find it useful, enlightening and fascinating.

This edition sees even more information in an even smaller Guide – and for the first time ever we now include fold-out artists' impressions of some of the more notable sights you may be lucky enough to encounter on your travels. Annotated scale maps of all locations are included, as always, and once again we've tried to keep everything as up-to-date as possible. We always appreciate it when travellers send us new and better information, so if you find anything in the Guide which ~is~ inaccurate, or even just misleading, we encourage you to get in touch and let us know.

Our aim is to be reliable, trustworthy, and an indispensable guide for all travellers of any means and background, and we thank you for putting your trust in us by purchasing this book. We wish you the best of luck in all your voyages, and if you happen to be passing one of our offices, feel free to drop in and tell us your best travel stories!

Obsidian City (Main Office):
3rd Floor, East 17th / River Park Back
North Gate Circle, Obsidian City

Gold City Office:
4th Floor, 72 Outer River Blvd
Gold City Western Settlement
Opal City Office:
The Old Four Bells, Ground Floor South
a42 Serpentine Way, High End, Opal City.
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10:23:23 pm GMT 05/08/19
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
The End

* * *

Thank you for reading, if you did.

If you skimmed it, I suggest reading it backwards, it works just as well.

I'm now going to add some reflections, because this is a strange book and its main failing is IMO that it's slow, especially at the start.

Actually, for me it's not a failing, because this story was basically a way for me to escape some really trying personal circumstances. So I frame it not as slow but as immersive, sensuous, descriptive, rich. A friend who read it called it 'a real trip', which I loved obviously, but from a friend so awww. Anyway, it is meant to be something to fall into and get lost in, I was completely lost in this world as I was writing, to me that's one of the big appeals of writing and reading fiction - a home away from home that's more interesting than home.

Another excuse: This actually began (as I may have mentioned) as an attempt to create a roleplaying world for tableop gaming. The other stories set I this world (and there are two sorta 'finished' and another in a first edit) have all started as attempts a writing game modules, that overflowed and became full books. I'd say they probably make better actual stories, because the long, drawn-out 'world-building' was done in Shadow Sister.

I'd still like to make games for this world, and devise a system for playing - but honestly, I have no idea where to begin. So if anyone reading would be up for that please get in touch. And if anyone fancies making Shadow Sister into a graphic novel or a movie (I personally think it would make a good 10-episode series lol), call me!

PDFs are available of all the abovementionred. I've been umming and awwing about including a link to a download page, but at this point I think I've earned the right, after reformatting a 170000-word book to post on a fantasy RP forum. So, all the PDFs are available for free from here. That one is shadow sister specifically, but the others are linked to there.

Oh, and another thing: poncey British spelling. Sorry about that shades

So again, thanks for reading, even just reading this bit. I now invite comments and critique, but I won't be hurt if there's nothing. Peace out etc.

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10:04:48 pm GMT 09/25/19
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
o hai

* * *

Excuse me, but one of the things I've been trytng to get done this summer, is a re-write / extensive edit of Voidstone, the second book of this little series. Anyway because it doesn't have so many page breaks and images, I've managed to make a PDF which fits here .. so, here it is, for anyone who'd like to try something else:

Here's the blurb...

The last Shadow Sister is dead, and the Voidstone she kept has appeared. Three quite different creatures seek it. One claims it as ancestral property and a badge of office. One claims it so as to keep a blood promise to its final keeper. One claims it in order to heal her lands, and break an ancient curse. But the dead woman was not the last Shadow Sister - and hers was not the last Voidstone.
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10:36:51 pm GMT 04/30/20
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
Shortly, I'm going to make one more post here then leave off. I've spent the last few months doing a final edit of the third in this little series of mine, and my personal favourite: Wanderer Returns.

The reason I'm making this post now is because I'm excited about it, I have previously considered all three of these works ''finished'' but in all honesty, they were about 75% finished at that time.

Now I consider them more like 95% finished, and in my experience that's more or less as good as it gets. I am now reliant on readers to spot things, because I don't think reading through again myself at the moment will be
a) bearable, or
b) fruitful.

So I'm going to re-publish it as it is, and my next post will contain a link to that file.

In the meantime .. because I'm quite proud of this .. the opening of that book, Wanderer Returns .. for anyone who may be interested, and with respect and thanks because again - if not for the players of Thain, I would never have developed the confidence to write something that starts like this:


It started in dust and fire.

The war had been going on for as long as anybody could remember, for as long as any book could tell; for as long as there had been books. War over land, over water, over food; over an idea, over what rules to follow. Sometimes even over something as simple as clothes; the reason was unimportant, it only mattered that the war continued.

And continue it did, escalating and attenuating from age to age but never really ending. Sometimes people cut each other to pieces with sharp glass, metal or the bones of other things they'd killed. Sometimes they would pound at each other with rocks, or pieces of trees they tore off in their rage. Sometimes they used fire, lightning, as time went on learning to exploit every element of nature, to corrode, ruin and cause ever more refined agony and efficient destruction.

Sticks, stones, fire and water were only the start. Still later they discovered how to separate and recombine the very building blocks of matter itself, and harness the energy that holds the cosmos together. And still, they used it to kill – to flatten the cities they had built, to vaporise millions of lives at a time, to poison entire landscapes so that nothing would grow and deserts bloomed in the midst of lush greenery.

But the slaughter that defined entire civilisations as they rose and fell, was only a symptom of the war of mind that never ceased. The endless war of must-have against won't-give, the eternal war of age's envy against youth's arrogance, the continuous war of Who Is Right, the constant war over What We Do Next...

It was considered honourable to fight, taboo to avoid conflict, and people worshipped death. They wore emblems of corpses, skulls, weapons – many carried real weapons wherever they went, and were quick to use them. Laws were crafted to make allowances for this, and it was considered acceptable for someone acting violently to blame others for provoking their violence. The war was a way of life, and it grew from individuals into groups, from groups into nations; and finally there was nowhere in the world that some aspect of the war was not being played out.

And one day, the people of the world who were still alive, looked around at their devastated planet and asked themselves, ''What have we done?''

Forests were burned and splintered, black and bare, fertile meadows were poisoned wastelands, rivers were green with sludge, and the sea was choked and toxic. The cities meant as sanctuaries from the horror and starvation, where abundance was created every day using technology, were churning snarls of physical and emotional violence. Every aspect of life there was a competition, and to lose was to die – from hunger, illness, violence, or simply from being sent away into the barren lands outside for some infraction.

Many looked around at the devastation and said, Let's leave this place. There are other, perfectly clean planets out there somewhere, waiting for us to arrive and claim them. Let's do so, and leave this cradle behind. Let's plant our seed in the wider galaxy, let's find out who else we're living with. It's time to go!

And they made, out of their own cities, a vast craft called Wanderer. It was built in orbit and it was so big that in order to construct it, the few remaining cities of the world had to finally consume every remaining resource. Everything was first built up into a tall, spindly tower; then from the tower was made the vessel. A kilometre deep and several across, it was the perfectly combined concentration of every human city left on Earth, and when it was finished almost all of Earth's remaining people got inside, said goodbye to their planet and what little still lived upon it, and floated away towards unknown destinations and a golden future.

But not everybody left; some saw the Earth as sacred, or feared what they saw as a betrayal of humanity's common parent. Even so, many of these retreated underground, away from the desolation into new underground shelters that had been built as the Wanderer was constructed in orbit. They were buried in a few of the least despoiled locations and were made from solid pieces of a strong metal alloy, to protect them from movements inside the Earth. These shelters became the main home of what remained of humanity on Earth, and their inhabitants stayed inside for many generations, only coming to the surface when absolutely necessary.

Then one day, it was noticed that the air outside was clean again, that plants were growing, and that the lands, seas and skies once more contained an abundance of life. Not everywhere – there were places perhaps too ruined ever to recover – but at the margins of the old world, some places had been less affected, and revived more quickly.

It still took many generations for those pockets of humanity to emerge fully from the ancient protection of their shelters, and embrace the natural world once more – but finally people learned again how to grow food in the earth. They learned how to make their own homes from wood and stone – and the plentiful black glass that occurred in vast expanses here and there.

And over time they built new cities. New civilizations arose and filled them with art and music and clothes and laws and morals and hierarchies. And children; wealth was accumulated and passed down the generations, and families once again grew powerful.

The wars of the past, the devastation and deserting of the Earth became myths, stories of a time before time, prehistory and legend; the people who had committed the horrors became gods and goddesses in the cultures and memories of the people descended from those who never left.

And the vast spacecraft Wanderer became merely a symbol, a promise that such barbarity and horror would not occur again.

The ancient gods had gone, and promised never to return.

[ LAN_29 10:42:24 pm GMT 04/30/20 ]
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12:28:04 am GMT 05/02/20
Level 10
Registered Member #1273
Joined: 2:56:54 pm GMT 03/23/08
Posts: 518
Right then, ''it's done'' ...

I mean, obviously if I open it to any page, I'll probably find something I want to change - but you have to draw a line somewhere, right?

Part 3 of my little series: Wanderer Returns

Here is the blurb:

A new star appears and begins crossing the sky night after night. Fear spreads among citizens of the ex-empirial Commonwealth; among Shapechangers from the Lands Beyond; and among the people of the Marathy Heart Lands. Most believe the Old Gods are now returning to bring back their war and destruction. Nobody really knows what it is or what will happen when it arrives; but everybody is afraid.

If you do read this, I'd appreciate any and all feedback.
Same goes for anything in this thread .. which is now open for any comments, should anyone feel drawn to make any.

Thank you for spending some time with me here.
See you in-game.
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