Eptian LXXV [75]

May 11, 2011

Eptih traveled a great distance with his caravan hoping to find some piece of land that was uninhabited and far from the troubles he knew where beginning. He also wanted to find a place of honor where he could bury the body of Thmascuid. As his journey took him further away from the Mortal realm, more of the Hetharcyp that were following him fell away from the caravan. Typically these men were the younger unmarried men who wished to find wives and build fortunes and when they felt they were getting farther away from those possibilities they could go no further and departed in good standing with Eptih. For his part he was happy to see them go to make better lives for themselves, he knew that the serenity he was seeking was no draw to the ambitious. In reality Eptih wanted to live alone with his wife but he would never turn away those that were following him and so he imagined himself living in concord with his wife and neighbors, farming his new lands and enjoying the spoils he had won in the war.

Eventually, Eptih found what he was looking for in a large valley that was encircled by hills with large mountains to the north. Here on the northern foothills, overlooking the valley, Eptih stopped and built his home. Many of the remaining Hetharcyp built homes in the same vicinity and soon afterward the land below in the valley was cultivated for farming, the land being equally divided amongst the Hetharcyp who settled their with Etih as the unquestioned leader. Many streams flowed from the mountains providing the necessary water year-round and the soil in the valley was richer then any they had seen before. It was obvious that the area had never been farmed and only a few old Sreoth ruins were scattered around the entire area.

Once his home was built, Eptih chose a special spot on his estate and buried the body of Thmascuid, he marked it with a small stone obelisk with the name “Thmascuid” carved in it. This spot would eventually become a place of pilgrimage where many would come in order to pay their respects to the man they felt as though had near single-handedly laid the foundation for Mortal freedom.

Eptih’s slaves and the other Hetharcyp worked the fertile land of the valley and abundant crops soon followed. The yield was so large there was an overabundance that needed to be transported to a far away market and sold off. This vast yield continued and as a result Eptih and the Hetharcyp became wealthy, but at the same time it drew many to the area looking for opportunity. Additionally as word spread about the place and the burial spot of Thmascuid the amount of pilgrims increased, many of which intended to stay, in hopes of making their fortune. The Hetharcyp did not relinquish ownership but they did allow some to work the land and build their homes there.

As the population increased and more people labored in the fields the yield from the farms increased and in time there was a constant flow of goods going in and out of the area. To make things more convenient many wanted to establish a town and a market but Eptih was initially not open to the idea. However when many of the Hetharcyp started to request these things as well Eptih relented and allowed the establishment of a town and market on the opposite side of the valley from his home. The mortals established the town and called it “Hero’s Tomb”, referring to Thmascuid’s tomb even though the tomb was a distance away and on Eptih’s private lands.

Eptih felt the establishment of this town was a bad omen for the future, it represented everything he had hoped to leave behind. He knew now that no matter how far he went to escape the evils of selfish men that evil would inevitably come to him. Due to these feelings he wondered if it might not be better to embrace the town and control it then to let if grow unimpeded and eventually control him.

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Eptian LXXIV

September 16, 2009

Once Eptih returned to the Great Chasm Fortress with Reyam he had already made up his mind to have Ebrel executed. Ebrel was too knowledgeable about Eptih’s lineage and too involved with the Velidian Empire, he was culpable for many horrors forced on the Mortal population and if Eptih was to spare him, especially since he was familiar with Eptih’s family, it would look as though Eptih was protecting him. Additionally, Eptih did not want it known that he was the Son of Velid and the brother of Rhosrc.

Once Ebrel knew Eptih was back in the camp he requested he be allowed to speak with him again. Eptih met with him again and in a bid to assuage Eptih’s anger and hopefully have his life spared Ebrel told Eptih where he could find the head of Thmascuid. He also revealed the mysterious general who had come on the scene as a powerful force and disappeared just as quickly was Queid Thmascuid. This information sparked a rage within Eptih, having the head of Thmascuid offered to him like it was some kind of paltry peace offering, and he soon after ordered Ebrel to be executed. The deed was done and Ebrel’s body and spiritform where locked up in a rather common sarcoph, a sarcoph that was not associated with a family much like an unknown orphan would be. This act by Eptih, pleased the Mortals who wanted revenge above all else. It was however disturbing in its lack of respect especially since Eptih knew Ebrel was the son of Orendun. 

Soon after the execution of Ebrel a large group of Mortal leaders came to the encampment. They wished to speak with Eptih about dispersing the army. Each leader wanted the men he had sent to join the army back so that they could rebuild their own towns and kill off as many Narcirogen as possible. By this point Eptih wanted nothing more then to be released as general and so he was in agreement with the Mortal leaders.

The question was put forth what should be done about Mortal sects that had cooperated with the Velidians, the Siradyt in particular. Eptih put forth the proposition that in the new order that was developing they would be shunned and that this would be punishment enough, he made it clear that he did not think it wise to attack them, that enough blood had been spilled. Many others however wanted retribution and when consensus was reached it was clear that a part of the army would be assembled and used to punish all those traitor Mortal Sects. Out of respect, the generalship of this force was offered to Eptih but he quickly refused stating that he wished now only to find some land, start a farm and live with his wife and future children. Eptih also advised that the course the Mortal leaders where setting upon could lead to civil war among the Mortal race and that this would be a disaster.

Consequently, Eptih was relieved of duty, the army was disbanded and a new small army composed of volunteers, typically younger unmarried men, was formed and command of it was given to ____. The various Mortal leaders now asserted themselves and amidst debate and argument begin making plans to re-organize all of existence. Eptih wanted no part of all of this, he could see that the squabbling was just beginning and was only a precursor of things to come. Eptih therefore addressed his army one last time and when he was done many of the original Hetharcyp wanted to follow him but he made it clear to them that he wanted no part of the what was coming and offered them advice to go home and find their own peace. When Eptih had finished he took his spoils which included treasure and slaves that he had claimed in the war and with his wife rode away.

Eptih went to where Ebrel had said the head of Thmascuid was and there he found it. Eptih next came back to the town of his youth and dug up the body of Thmascuid which he had burried before and reintroduced head to body. Eptih left with his caravan which now included the body of Thmascuid to find a new land in which to settle.


Eptian LXXIII

August 19, 2009

As the Sonimian Overlords returned to the Great Chasm Fortress they where confronted with a large entrenched Pan Mortal force that was waiting for them. Upon returning these Sonimian forces smashed against these battlements and broke apart like sparks fly off the anvil with each successive hammer blow. The Overlords, once defeated, would flee into the surrounding landscape with what remained of their forces, now powerless to turn the tide. The Sonimi themselves could not be captured but a majority of their forces were. It was assumed that the Sonimi wandered around looking for Velid but none of the Mortals knew for sure.

Ebrel was eventually brought before Eptih and he would not reveal much, he did however have a story to tell Eptih. He explained how Eptih was the son of Velid, the twin brother of Rhosrc and that his mother had been the wife of Velid and mother of the two boys. He told Eptih how his father had tried to kill both him and his brother and how his mother had gone into the Great Chasm, where he had been tossed, in order to retrieve him and that there she had perished or at least that was what was believed by everyone else. Eptih was astonished by the tale and yet it all fit all together that is except for one glaring thing which he asked Ebrel about. If he knew all of this why did it seem no one else did, why did he not direct Velid to capture him when he was a youth and thus avoid conflict altogether? And to this Ebrel replied that being the only one of  two who knew the truth he felt that holding the knowledge of the true events could save him from some future miserable fate, meaning he could persuade Velid with the info should he ever come into opposition with him. Eptih did not believe Ebrel’s reason for concealing the information and wondered if he knew his mother was in fact still alive. This caused Eptih to fear the repercussions of Ebrel continuing to live for he seemed to hold Derram’s fate in his hands. Discussing the intricacies of being of the Norstilam race which both Ebrel and Eptih where, Eptih realized that Ebrel was in fact the son of Orendun. Eptih though did not reveal this to Ebrel.

After listening to Ebrel, Eptih wanted to know if the story was true and so he decided to visit his mother and ask her. Eptih left the army in the hands of “____” and by himself went off to visit his mother who was quite far from the Great Chasm Fortress. When Eptih arrived Derram was happy to see her son but she could see that he was distressed and when she asked what was the matter he told her the story Ebrel had told him. Derram was disappointed and told Eptih that the story was true and with that Eptih questioned her as to why she had withheld so much important information from him. She explained how they where in danger of being found by Velid and that she did what she did to save him. Eptih asked her how she could leave Rhosrc behind with Velid and she told him she had though he was dead having seen him so mangled. Eptih was in a sense relived knowing the truth because for so long he had questioned his ancestry and had never been able to coalesce all of his thoughts about himself, his mother, Thiaraceph and Thmascuid into one logical account. Now all was revealed and all of his questions where answered. Although Eptih knew Derram had done what she had for his and her welfare he still had some animosity toward her for deceiving him and thus left without accepting her apology, leaving the situation with her unresolved.

Before departing back to the army Eptih went to Reyam, who was in the same town as his mother, and took her with him on his way. From there Eptih made his way back to the army at the Great Chasm Fortress slowly taking time to consider all that he had learned and spending time with Reyam. Although Eptih’s mind was at first occupied with all the new revelations he quickly became unburdened by the truth and was able to focus his attention on the celebration of his recent victory and his beautiful wife. Nevertheless after many days of travel as Eptih came closer to the Great Chasm Fortress he began to debate with himself what to do with Ebrel and what path to take now that his purpose of freeing the race of Mortals was fulfilled.


[ Eptian LXVIII ]

May 18, 2009

Velid was outraged that his army had been checked by the rebels, he was expected to be receiving word of his armies victory and the slaughter of the enemy not that they had been bested in their confrontation and where on the verge of destruction. Velid as a result of the news directed his secret weapon the Queid general, the same one Eptih had briefly seen before, and his son Rhosrc as an auxiliary force to bring their forces to bear on the Pan Mortal Army. He further instructed them to destroy every last vestige of the Mortal rebellion and to not leave a single living being behind alive.

Rhosrc, for his part, was not happy that the Queid general has been chosen to lead this assault on the Mortal rebellion after all he has done to prove himself as the most capable second to Velid. Rhosrc at this instance was done trying to prove his validity and now decided to take power with his own hand, he just needed the opportunity to neutralize his opposition. Rhosrc’s hunger for power was a good harbinger for the Pan Mortal Army, although they did not know it Rhosrc was more concerned with establishing himself in power then defeating the mortal rebellion.

The Queid general that Velid directed to attack Eptih and his army and who Eptih had seen before was in fact Thmascuid, his head having been placed upon the body of another in the Velidian’s belief that the war knowledge Thmascuid had in life might be retained in death. This shadow of the living Thmascuid was not the same man who was the greatest of the Mortal heroes but he was a cunning leader still, even as a lowly Queid. Having been not far from the action Queid Thmascuid and his army arrived in time to reinforce the Velidian army before the Pan Mortal Army could attack and destroy it in its weakened state.

Eptih was disappointed that his army had not been able to neutralize the Velidians before they could be reinforced. He knew that now the Velidians would be enlivened and as a result the fighing would be much harder and especially violent as the Pan Mortal Army had recently been reinforced and was invigorated as well. Both sides confident of their victory.

The Velidians, now under command of Queid Thmascuid, commenced the attack and the fighting was viscous. Soon after the main attack began Rhosrc arrived with his army and he was upset to see that the battle had begun, he expected Queid Thmascuid would wait for his arrival if at all possible before commencing. With his army still out of view of the Mortals Rhosrc sent a messenger to Queid Thmascuid and the messenger returned with orders for Rhosrc to direct his force to the rear of the Mortals and attack. Rhosrc did not like this idea and hesitated to consider his options but eventually saw no clear move other then to follow the orders and therefore he proceeded to march his army toward the rear of the Mortals and once there began the attack.

Eptih now being attacked from two sides called in the 3rd Division he had placed in reserve and the 3rd moved quick and managed to sandwich in Rhosrcs forces. This enraged Rhosrc all the more as he felt he and his army had been used as a distraction. But what angered him most of all was that he expected that the Queid Thmascuid would have let him know if there was a Mortal reserve force and so he wondered if Queid Thmascuid was trying to get him killed. In his rage Rhosrc left his army in their tenuous position and made his way around the entire battlefield and reached the Queid general and his forces in secret. Upon confronting the Queid Thmascuid, who was surprised to see him, Rhosrc removed his sword from its sheath and cut the Queid general down. The Queid general’s troops tried to restrain Rhosrc but where unable to do so. With the Queid general dead and his spiritform released Rhosrc rejoined his army and began a withdrawal as best he could. He lost many of his soldiers but eventually managed to pull his forces out with a large remaining contingent.


[ Eptian LIX ]

December 24, 2008

After the reassurance of their fidelity, Eptih and his commanders moved their forces into position to ambush the coming Velidian army. They waited for some time and eventually scouts were sent out to see if they could find the Velidian army and they returned with news that the Velidians were proceeding directly into the trap. Only a short while later the Velidians indeed walked directly into the trap and when Eptih called out the order the ambushed commenced catching the Velidians off guard. The Queid put up a fight but were routed. Eptih himself wanted to get to the Sonimian Overlord but the fray between them blocked his path. The Sonimian Overlord who found himself without his guard began a slaughter of his own killing all the Hetharcyp who were unlucky enough to come within his sphere. Eptih saw this and for the first time realized the power the Sonimi wielded.  

During the battle Eptih, who was commanding his army and scanning every possible view, saw a Velidian force that had come up after the battle began. This force was made up of Mortals, most likely Siradyt, and commanded by a General that Eptih thought seemed like Thmascuid even though he had been dismembered. Having seen this situation develop quickly Eptih had no time to study the face of the General for confirmation of identity but had to reposition a detachment of his own forces in order to counter this oncoming force. Whenever opportunity permitted he would try to make out the face more clearly to prove to himself that it was not Thmascuid but he was never able to see him clearly. 

As Eptih realigned his forces the Sonimian Overlord called for a retreat and the mysterious general turned his troops around and left the field immediately followed by the his forces and then the remnants of the Velidian army. The Hetharcyp did not pursue as their injuries were great and they were in need of rest. Although the ambush had been successful the Hetharcyp had been severely wounded. Eptih realized that had the mysterious general been able to attack things might have turned out quite differently. It was a stroke of luck. 

The Hetharcyp proceeded back to the town on Eptih’s orders and there they nursed their injured. Once Eptih had secured his camp he took a small force and began searching for Thmascuid. Eptih wanted to settle the score with Thmascuid once and for all. Eventually Thmascuid was found and immediately Eptih engaged him and without the least bit of compassion and no words, Eptih quickly killed Thmascuid and decapitated him putting the head up on a tall pike to rot. Additionally Eptih had Thmascuid’s spiritform and body encased in a nondescript Sarcoph that was burried deep on the outskirts of the town among the trees by his men. Derram later saw the head of Thmascuid on the pike and pleaded with Eptih to take it down but he ignored her request and that was the end of that. 

Eptih realized that the Velidians would not suffer so great a defeat in silence. He knew they were reorganizing their forces, preparing an attack and with that in mind he took his mother and some of the few reaming Mortals with him and with his army broke camp and proceeded out of the town.

Once clear from the town by a large distance he put his army under command of Fayareg and sent them to a predetermined point. He would take his mother, the remaining townspeople and a small detachment of Hetharcyp on a side trip. Eptih and companions proceeded to the town where he had left Reyam before. This is where he planned to deposit his mother and the townspeople in what he considered to be relative safety. 

Upon arriving, Reyam was very happy to see Eptih and he was equally happy to see her. It was if the two had grown closer together while they had been apart and on the first night after he got his mother situated he asked Reyam if she would marry him and she agreed. A day later in a small ceremony with Derram present Eptih married Reyam and the bride and groom were happy. Eptih knew however that his time with Reyam would be short-lived as the situation demanded he be elsewhere and not burdened with paltry romantic feelings when such huge events were swirling around them.


[ Eptian LVI ]

September 16, 2008

By this time the Velidians had become well aware of the Hetharcyp and Velid himself had taken notice and called for their destruction. The Velidians were financing just about anyone who was willing to fight the Hetharcy and it was at this point that the Velidians decided to retake the town that Thiaiaceph was holding.

Thiaraceph  makes overtures to the Velidians and lets it be known he is willing to give up the Hetharcyp and Eptih for control of the town. This deal is taken by the Velidians and as such they sent a small band of Siradyt with Queid support to secretly enter the town, coordinate with Thiaraceph and assassinate Eptih. By sheer coincidence the very day this small force came to the town to do their work Eptih had gone out with the majority of the Hetharcyp to reconnoiter the approaches to the town. As a result only about twenty-five percent of the Hetharcyp were in the town. The Siradyt assassins believed Eptih was still in the town and they made their move against the Hetharcyp that were present planning on killing their way to Eptih. When the action began the Hetharcyp were surprised and thus caught off guard and many were killed. Some were able to flee the town and inform Eptih of what had happened although they had no idea that Thiaraceph was involved nor did they recognize it was specifically an attempt to assassinate Eptih.

Eptih fearing a large attack called for the withdrawl of the Hetharcyp from the town, at least the people would not be held responsible for quartering combatants and might not be held account for the damage the Hetharcyp had inflicted on the Velidians.

Eptih decided to take a small band and reenter the town and try to convince Thiaraceph to take the people back to the caves, but mainly he wanted to get his mother and Reyam and her family out of the town. Thiaraceph refused to move and as much as Eptih tried he remained obstinate leaving Eptih no choice but to go to the people directly. Eptih presented the situation to the people and told them he could take them back to the caves where the would be safe. Then Thiaraeph presented his case that they should stay and without the Hetharcyp would be free from rebuke and the majority of the people choose to follow Thiaraeph. Eptih could not believe the outcome and made preparations to take away those who wished to follow. To Eptih’s further surprise Derram told him she was staying with Thiaraceph. When Eptih questioned her she related her commitment to Thiaraceph and that Eptih was now his own man capable of fending for himself no longer in need of a mother’s protection. When Eptih questioned her further she cut him short and asked him to respect her decision, which he did with a disappointed demeanor. Reyam and her family were decided upon going with Eptih and the Hetharcyp.

When Eptih saw all those gathered to follow him back to the caves the number was so few that there was no way they would be able to survive and so Eptih told them that he would take them to friendly town throughout the area deposition families in the various towns. With this news still more fell off to stay with Thiaraceph.

With that Eptih, his small band, Reyam, her family and a small group of other Mortals headed out to rejoin the rest of the Hetharcyp.

As he promised, Eptih deposited the people in various friendly towns and he kept Reyam by his side until the last possible moment when she and her family were the last to be taken in. It had become obvious to all close to the situation that they favored each other. This was a shock to some of the people, their relationship being taboo, although less so in the company of his warriors. In their culture a warrior like Eptih was to win a bride or have her given to him by a father. Some felt Eptih was taking advantage of the situation, a fatherless girl whose entire adult male family was dead. It was not the way things were done but they were not married so it was overlooked.


[ Eptian LV ]

August 16, 2008

Thmascuid, after Eptih’s disappearance, had taken to secretly training the youth of the local area in the war arts similar to the way he had been training Eptih. At first he had a few students but eventually the project grew into an entire school with students of varying ages from all the surrounding areas. Thmascuid had turned these students into a force of highly trained warriors all without the Velidians becoming aware. His goal was to reestablish the heroes who had been nearly annihilated in the past conflicts.

These warriors being without a leader decided that they would follow Eptih away from the caves and ask him to lead them, they did this because they were committed to Thmascuid and Eptih had been his first student and a blood relative and thereby the second Hetharcyp, Thmascuid being number one. The warriors took their offer to Eptih and he accepted and thus became the head of an established order of didicated warriors trained to kill. In all at this point the Hetharcy numbered under one hunder warriors however their training made them as fierce as five hundred. Eptih accepted because he did not want what Thmascuid had been building to wither on the vine, he wanted Thmascuid’s legacy to be remembered.

This is where the major split between Thiaraceph and Eptih occured, Thiaraceph leading the people of the town and Eptih leading the Hetharcy. Although Reyam wanted to go with Eptih she could not leave what remained of her family and therefore stayed at the caves. Eptih had convinced her to do so knowing the path he was on was a danerous one and not proper for women.

Eptih left with his Hetharcyp and immediately they began using their skills to harm the Velidians as much as possible. This plan took many forms but initially the Hetharcyp terrorized the Narcirogen killing them whenever possible, killing Siradyt, attacking and dismembering Queid soldiers and evading capture as they roamed the countryside. The Hetharcyp took great pride in attacking the Narciogen at their old town and when they did no quarter was shown and as a result the cruelty of the Hetharcyp became known to all the Narciogen.

Although at first the work of the Hetharcyp went mostly unnoticed by the Velidian ruling class eventually and Velid himself, when enough had been killed and large swathes of land were left in ruin they started to take notice and with each new act of rebellion their discomfort and anger grew. With this notoriety came fame among the Mortals and thus a flock of men wishing to join in arose wherever they went. At this point the Hetharcyp were the only Mortals fighting against their Velidian overlords, the rest had long since been subjugated.

As the Hetharcyp grew so to did Eptih’s power and it became his focus to clear the town of his youth that had been lost. Therefore the Hetharcyp managed to retake the town and slaughter all the Narcirogen inhabitants, upon hearing of this news Thiaraceph decided to leave the caves and return with the people so as to reestablish the town.

One night when the Hetharcyp were camped out in the town they had retaken Thiaraceph and all the townspeople returned. Eptih could not believe the stupidity of Thiaraceph, bringing the people back to the town when the Velidians were sure to try and recapture it. Eptih let his feelings be known to Thiaraceph and the two nearly came to blows. Eptih was however happy to see his mother and Reyam and that night he spent talking with them as the Hetharcyp planned to take the people back to the caves in the morning. When morning came Thiaraceph refused to move the people again and demanded they stay in their town. This put an extreme burden on Eptih in that now his forces would be required to protect the town from the coming onslaught. Eptih tried to convince Thiaraceph to take the people back to the caves but to no avail and it became obvious to Eptih that Thiaraceph was trying to establish his authority over him.

Among the various other sects of mortals elsewhere in Existence the Hetharcyp were either loved or hated. Some felt the Hetharcyp were causing unnecessary trouble, a trouble that would only be turned around and used to cause them further harm. Others however praised the Hetharcy and wished them Success, sending supplies and men and making offers to the Hetharcyp to come and cause havoc against the Velidians in their area, some even offering additional goods for these services.

The support or lack of it for the Hetharcyp divided the Mortals and factions developed that were either pro or anti-Hetharcyp. Some groups that despised the Hetharcyp set up parties to hunt them down and so as the Hetharcyp grew so did their enemies. All of this did not deter Eptih, he was building a military force and could see that just maybe he would be able to throw the Velidian yoke from the necks of the Mortals. There were still many hurdles to cross though and at the moment the biggest one was Thiaraceph and the fate of the townspeople.