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Monkey vs. Reptile

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Posted 10/23/08 - 6:20 PM:
Subject: Monkey vs. Reptile
In ancient times the world was filled with many strange and marvelous creatures. Gigantic furry behemoths roamed the lands, devouring whole forests, feathered lizards ran across the plains, huge snakes slithered in the dark areas of the forests, and terrifying beasts with many claws and fangs walked the earth day and night looking for prey. It was a terrifying and glorious time!

In those most ancient of days many races of intelligent beings dwelled in the plains, the forests, the mountains, and by the seas. They built temples and fortresses, tended the fields, and mined the earth for precious metals. Of these, the most prominent were the H'mnn and the Draakon. The H'mnn were so called partly because of the sound their tribes made when gathered round the fires of their villages. Each night their joined together in a deep gutteral song in time to a rythm beat on resounding drums made of skin and wood. They were many kind of H'mnn, some covered head to toe in a thick layer of hair, others with hair only covering their heads and chests. They were highly practiced in the art of the bow, the plow, and sought to live in harmony with the earth and it's song. It is said that they are the anscestors of men, and that the line of great kings that later ruled the earth were their sons.

The Draakon were a tall, fearsome race of bipedal reptiles. They too had many forms, from the great feathered Kings to the lowly creeping servants. With tail and claw they had mastered the arts of metallurgy and magic, and it is said that their kings practiced the darkest of dark arts, invoking their racial god, a fierce demonic avatar with many heads and many horns. Each tribe was devoutely loyal to their king, and each king was loyal to their god. The Draakon often acted in unison, as if they had but one mind and one body.

Though the H'mnn and Draakon lived many ages in relative peace, they feared one another. The Draakon feared the H'mnn because they were individual, unpredictable, too wild and savage, and easily swayed by emotion and hormones. The H'mnn feared the unity of the Draakon, feared their slashing claws and snapping teeth, and their terrible god.

The earth, for a time, was blessed with great swelling abunance in both the sea and land. The seas gave forth many fish, the earth, many fruits, and trees and foliage grew huge and lush under a benevolent sun and pleasing rains. In turn, each race grew populous, growing fat off the land and sea, laying claim to more and more territory. As their numbers increased, so too did their conflicts. H'mnn and Draakon now faced each other on a daily basis, their two worlds coming dangerously close to one another, their two ways of life coming into conflict and competition.

After generations of careful deliberation and charting of the spirits of the stars, the Draakon finally determined to seize control of the lands of the H'mnn--the lands of the plain, rolling hillside, and forest. But the H'mnn surprised them. Despite their individuality, the H'mnn banded together to face their enemy and drove them back to the mountains and sea. Enraged by defeat, the Draakon swore to eliminate the H'mnn from the face of the earth, and marshalled all of their finest warriors together to make a final assault on the lands of the H'mnn. Their fierce reptile army, bristling with armour, shields, and weapons of cold steel, was 500, 000 strong. Never before had the earth seen such a force assembled in one place. The very ground shook as they passed and the trees trembled.

But the H'mnn were far more numerous. From all corners of the world they gathered their forces to come and meet their enemy. Over 2 million of them heeded the call, and on the plains of the great divide near the endless desert, the two mightly armies clashed.

The battle was intense. It drew on day after day with Draakon and H'mnn slaughtering each other in the most gruesome ways. Draakon feasted on the flesh of H'mnn, while H'mnn drank the blood of fallen Draakon to gain strength from the spirit of their foes. The Draakon called upon their darkest magics to destroy the H'mnn, and many who caught sight of the powerful Draakonian sorcerers conjuring devils in the midst of the bloody plains fled the battle in sheer terror.

But the H'mnn were resourceful and resiliant. Time and time again they stood up to the reptile's charge, against their weapons, their magics. They used the Draakon's hive thinking against them, and finally turned the tide with sheer might in numbers. It became a fight to the death. H'mnn and Draakon slaughtered one another until the H'mnn stood proudly on the field, a mere 70, 000 strong, cheering in victory over the rotting corpses of some 490, 000 Draakon warriors.

The remaining Draakon fled to their mountain sancturaries, but the H'mnn pursued them to their caves and killed all that moved. They drove the last of the Draakon into the sea and into the bowels of the earth, the deepest caves and mines, there to dwell in darkness forever. Finally, the land was cleared of all Draakon, and all symbols of their demon-god were burned to ash. The Draakon empire was no more.

But, just as the battle ended, the eldest leaders of the H'mnn were told a troubling tale by a wandering monk of the Annaku race. The Annaku were known as the keepers of great and hidden knowledge, and some said that it was they who had taught the Draakon to forge metal and the H'mnn to plant crops. They were a distant and mysterious people, tall and thin, with pale skin that seemed to glow like burning embers. Always they wore thick hooded garments and carried with them strange spices which they ate only at certain times of the day, when the sun was in the correct position. The monk informed the elders that there was a kingdom of Draakon far to the east, near a great ocean, whose king was a most powerful sorcerer. His troops had fled early in the battle and snuck back to their master under cover of darkness. The Draakon of that kingdom kept many H'mnn as slaves, even using them as warriors in battle. Indeed, their had been many stories from the field of strange H'mnn warriors wearing the ensignia of the demon god and fighting alongside the Draakon serpents.

The monk told an incredible tale. The Draakon king was preparing to usher in a new era of darkness by summoning the soul of the great demon god from the depths of the sea. This he planned to do on the winter equinox, which that year happened to correspond to a great cosmic conjunction, wherein many of the wandering stars came into alignment with the earth. The H'mnn had long feared the day, as prophets of old had warned that the conjunction was the sign of cataclysms to come and the unleashing of evil upon the world. The Draakon would surely succeed and a new era of Draakon rule would begin, unless the H'mnn could stop him. Fortunately there was still time. The great conjunction would not occur for many moons, and even though the journey was long and perilous, the H'mnn may yet still be able to arrive in time to prevent evil from taking over the earth.

Many of the H'mnn were fearful. The superstituous among them saw the portent of the end of the world. There was a great chattering among the warriors. However, the eldest leaders were not convinced. They saw the Annaku as deceptive, tricksters who would love nothing better than to lead H'mnn to a trap, or to destroy both H'mnn and Draakon so the Annaku might rule the earth. Each side howled at each other, some demanding an army go to crush the remaining Draakon, regardless of the so-called evil demon. Others wailed over their lost comrades and begged the elders to return to their villages to rebuild their peoples.

Finally, a counsel of 12 elders from each corner of the world was selected, representing the 12 races of H'mnn. They deliberated and finally selected 64 warriors from their ranks to form a scouting party to track the Draakon back to their eastern kingdom and report on their status. If the Annaku told the truth, a great army would be summoned again to go forth to battle. If not...

At the break of dawn on the fourth day after the great battle on the plains of the divide, the scouting party, led by the great warrior-chief Abb'h from a northen tribe, began their long journey east. Armed with a map provided by the Annaku monk, limited provisions, and light weapons, they turned their backs to the rising sun and left the plains of their homeland, perhaps never to return.

Edited by Midnight_Monk on 10/30/08 - 11:52 AM

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Posted 10/28/08 - 4:18 PM:

hi MM,

this is an interesting setting to be explored. the backdrop provides a lot of potential for interesting character development. i would propose introducing some main characters at the outset to help the reader's interest become more vested in the significance of the battle and other events. nice work developing the world and mythological aspects.

smiling facelib
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Posted 10/30/08 - 11:56 AM:

This is merely a prelude, a bit of background. The next chapter will focus on the warrior Abb'h and his lieutenents as they travel eastward. It may feature the Annaku monk too, but I'm not sure if he is planning on traveling in that direction wink There will be at least two other important characters to be introduced later on...

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