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The Ethereal Table - A short story
Taey Rurj is elected by The Old Gods as a representative upon the Ethereal Table to form the realm as she saw fit. Not all The Old Gods agreed with her enactment as her initial decree was controversial in nature and there was simply no way she could handle her responsibilities by herself. Therefore The Old Gods elected Caprikel as her associate, creating the Senate around the Ethereal Table where decisions would be made in accordance. However, a conflict brews between Taey and Caprikel as they oppose each others decisions causing several laws to be broken. Coming to a resolution is simply not an option leaving only a single question - who will prevail in this conflict?
Chapter 1: Controversial Verdict
The legends always told stories about divine beings and dragon aspects, however they’ve never told stories about the Old Gods. That is of course, because the Beenu language has not yet been deciphered. Their stories tell about these Gods, and warn us of their power.
Until today, decisions by the Old Gods remained unanimous, mostly harmless to the overall wellbeing of the realm. This was until today. The Old Gods whispered simultaneously, electing a divine representative of the ethereal table. Her name was none other than Taey Rurj. The Old Gods assigned her with the task to lead the direction of the Grand Paladin Order as she saw fit for the realm. The task was so paramount, it would later change the development of the entire destiny of this tiny world.
Taey represented the physical entity of a Kobold and took the pedestal at Rank 3 the significance of which did not seem critical as she was a single representative, however it allows the higher ranked senator to make the final decision in a dispute. Any forthcoming decision from here were hers and her own. Her first course of action was to designate Gwyneth Sunsword to lead the Grand Paladin Order to stop Bopen and avenge her father Virgo. Was this the right decision or would have Lance Willakers made for a better leader? The Old Gods could only sit back and watch for what was to come from this decision.
Chapter 2: Violating Dispute
Taey’s decision was highly controversial between the Old Gods. Half of them praised her for the decision, the other half on the other hand condemned her for it. They called her a simpleton arguing that Lance would have been the superior choice as a leader of the Grand Paladin Order. They concurred that having a single leader at the ethereal table could have had devastating outcomes on the realm and there was not a chance that Taey could handle such responsibility set upon her by herself. This half of the Old Gods spoke at once electing a second representative who would assist Taey in the decision making.
His name was none other than Caprikel himself. He believed that Taey was misguided and her decisions needed to be rectified to better suit the future of the realm. Caprikel believed that bringing uniformity through Ageless was the only way to bring peace upon this world. He strongly believed that Bopen was the key to achieving this goal. War was the only option to bring peace upon the land. He knew that he was doing a righteous deed and acted as the true voice of the Old Gods.
His arrival came at a surprise for Taey as she was not informed of this decision by the Old Gods. Ironically Caprikel took the physical presence of an Elf believing that he had an upright view and a noble vision. He took the pedestal as a Rank 8, however Taey had also grown to Rank 8 herself by this time meaning there had to be an agreement in their decisions before actions could be made. They had equal power behind the ethereal table and had just as much authority as the senators.
“Hello there, who may I have the privilege to be in the presence of?” Taey politely asked once she encountered Caprikel.
Caprikel looked her up and down in disapproval before speaking. He clearly did not see her as an equal even though her rank said otherwise.
“It’s shameful as an overseer of the Grand Paladin Order that you haven’t even had the decency to take the physical form of an Elf.” Caprikel smirked in condemnation.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t realise I was in the presence of a Goblin.” Taey furiously exhaled.
“I’m surprised you have the audacity to even say that understanding some of the Old Gods identify themselves as Goblins.” Caprikel spoke in discontent. “You’re pitiful. I’m surprised the Old Gods chose you as their representative.”
From the very beginning Caprikel showed unprofessionalism as a senator breaking a basic rule of attacking the person rather than attacking the subject. He attempted to demean Taey to gain power over her and there was no one around to stop him from doing so.
“So, are you here to assist me or are you merely a simpleton who’s here to show their ignorance?” Taey was having none of it.
“As a senator, my role is to lead the realm to a better tomorrow and as part of my duty I’m here to abide to this by leading Bopen to war!” Caprikel concluded.
“This is outrageous! Can you hear yourself?!” Taey protested.
“I don’t see any reason as to why you wouldn’t agree with this decision. Are you being a hypocrite? I want you to remind yourself that you chose Gwyneth to lead the Grand Paladin Order to war against the ageless instead of taking the more reasonable path by choosing Lance.” Caprikel advised.
Taey refused to listen. She believed her path was moral and was well reasoned. There was simply no other alternative to it.
“No, your request is overruled.” Taey dismissed.
Caprikel understood since they were the same rank they both had to come to an agreement before a decision was made final. He had to have her agree to his proposal, maybe his approach wasn’t suitable to convince Taey.
“Are you sure it’s not what you want? Think about it, Gwyneth’s path is to kill Bopen. Wouldn’t it be easier if Bopen came to her?” Caprikel persuaded her.
Taey thought about it for a moment. “Dismissed. I refuse to help you create an army for Bopen. It simply defeats the purpose of my initial intention.”
Caprikel stared her in the eyes, furious with the outcome. “So be it.” He conceded knowing he had no power over this decision.
Taey smiled as she walked away from the ethereal table leaving Caprikel to himself.
“You won’t stop my divine decision, I was brought upon this ethereal table to fulfil it and adhere to the voices of the Old Gods!” He whispered in frustration.
He began to chant a curse in a divine language allowing Bopen to take control of the Deadlantis and begin to form an Ageless army. “My job here is done.” Caprikel smiled.
Chapter 3: Malicious Scheme
Caprikel knew that he had broken the sacred law as a senator and the representative of the Old Gods. Once Taey found out, he was going to get prosecuted and exiled from the ethereal table. Worst of all, his divine decision was going to be annulled and Bopen would lose control of the Ageless army. In his mind, it meant the world would dismantle itself in disarray. He simply could not allow this to happen, he had to find a way to prevent Taey from banishing him. Concealing his divine decision wasn’t an option as it wouldn’t take Taey a long time to figure out he had made it without her concession, there simply had to be another way to limit Taey’s actions.
“Why hello there my fellow associate.” Caprikel heard someone say from behind.
As he turned around he saw a male figure in front of him, only slightly shorter yet he didn’t seem as if he was an elf but rather portrayed the characteristics of a tall dwarf.
“My name is Qazerquoi, it’s very nice to meet you.” He smiled.
“I didn’t think there would be anymore Old Gods joining us at the ethereal table!?” Caprikel wondered.
“I was chosen as a third representative to break any ties in voting since the two representatives here are of the same rank. Speaking of which, where is the other representative?” Qazerquoi questioned.
Caprikel thought over it and came up with a brilliant idea, he was going to use Qazerquoi to diminish Taey’s influential power. It was at this moment Caprikel knew that if he played his cards right, not only would he remain in the senate but he would also take full control of it allowing Bopen to achieve his goals.
“I apologise for my rudeness, let me introduce myself properly. My name is Caprikel and I welcome you with utmost respect to the ethereal table. I am invigorated and very much look forward to working closely with you to shape this realm as the Old Gods see fit.” Caprikel took a slight bow.
“Thank you for the formal introduction, but you don’t need to be so pretentious. I don’t bite, you can even call me Qaz for short.” Qazerquoi smiled.
Caprikel visibly frowned.
“What’s the matter?” Qaz politely asked.
“I apologise for avoiding your earlier question in regards to the other representative, but I have distressing news I have to share with you.” Caprikel continued to create a fabricated sad emotion.
“Please don’t hold back, let me know the current situation.” Qaz requested.
Caprikel looked up at Qaz as if he was about to begin tearing up “You see, when I arrived here I found miss Taey to be quite ignorant. Not only does she not care about her roles as a senator, but she also tends to put up quite an attitude.” Caprikel knew he had Qaz hooked in his ruse. It was only a matter of time before he overthrew Taey’s control of the senate.
“Please, do go on.” Qaz urged.
“Taey denied any proposals made by me if they did not support the goals of her successor Gwyneth Sunsword. She’s selfish and doesn’t care about the general requests of the Old Gods. She’s everything a senator is not supposed to be and I’m afraid of the consequences that’ll come out of her decisions. She simply cannot be trusted with the duties of a senator.” Caprikel finished.
“I see. If she is as corrupt as you make her out to be, then I believe we should bring this up with the Old Gods in hopes to relieve her from her position as a representative.” Qaz suggested.
“Indeed, I believe this is the only solution that we have on the table. It’s unfortunate that she only sees her values before the values of the Old Gods.” Caprikel agreed.
“It’s a shame. My successor is Lyn Azveltara who would have assisted Gwyneth Sunsword but I guess it’s just not meant to be.” Qaz frowned. “I still wish to advance the divine decision to impregnate her so that her child would be my new successor.” Qaz explained.
“Since the three of us are all rank 10, I don’t see an issue of enacting this without the presence of Taey. She would most likely disagree with your notion since it’s not directly related to the success of Gwyneth but her vote would not make a difference on the final decision either way.” Caprikel strived to get on Qaz’s good side.
“So be it. In the meantime, we should decide on the punishment for Taey.”
Chapter 4: Realisation
Taey was very rational and perceptive in her decisions. She was cunning and yet cautious, content and yet vigorous to achieve her goals. She knew her responsibilities very well and carefully abided by them. She wasn’t going to let anyone change this, not even Caprikel regardless of his demeanour. However, outside of the ethereal table she inherited a completely different personality.
After leaving Caprikel she headed straight for her resort, her paradise, her home under the Grand Tree next to a beautiful pond. As an Old God, many times more powerful than any divine being she could create universes at a single whisper of her voice, however she was prohibited from doing so by the thousands of other Old Gods as such monumental decisions had to be made unanimously. Luckily, this law did not prevent her from creating a simple humble abode where she could rest in serenity. It was truly a warming place where she could peacefully gather her thoughts.
Taey was highly intrigued by the mortals living in the realm. She would thoroughly study their living habits and attempt to replicate them in hopes to understand them better. She would eat, drink and attempt daily chores just like these mortals, but her favourite activity in no contention was sleeping. The concept of resting your mind up until the point where you lost self-consciousness fascinated her and acted as the main basis to why she voted for the divine decision to kill Phanto the Sun God. She wanted the mortals to endeavour further in this phenomenon. This was a great way to clear the mind and forget about the frustrations. This was her intention after meeting Caprikel, a calming rest.
Several small pebbles had been dropped into the oceans by the Ageless kids when Taey had finally awoken from her slumber. Without any hesitation, she formed five of the most luxurious red gems and began nibbling on them. ‘Breakfast of the Kobolds’ the mortals liked to call it and it was truly a delicacy. The day was bright and pleasant in her abode with the sky and the pond shining in bright blue colours.
What was that? She seemed to have stepped on something. As she lifted her foot she saw a crushed up yellow leaf on the grass. Swiftly she turned around and looked up at the Grand Tree of her abode. The Tree was covered in yellow and red leaves, something wasn’t right. Taey realised the Grand Tree was dying. She quickly turned around again and with a fluent motion of her hand she formed a reflection of the realm in the pond. Her concerns were well-founded, Bopen was forming an army!
She became furious seeing this and demanded answers. Without anymore hesitation she headed straight to the ethereal table to confront Caprikel. The Old Gods could travel through time and space, creating their own heavens and getting to any place in seconds. Taey thought that she could reach Caprikel immediately, however her ethereal transition through space was interrupted by something. Without being aware of it, she ended up somewhere completely different.
Upon recreating her physical form, Taey heard a voice from behind her.
“Hello there.” It was a feminine voice.
Taey turned around and saw a female kobold in front of her.
“I apologise, I believe the Old Gods sent me to the ethereal table as a representative but there was some disturbance and someone else was sent instead of me. I somehow ended up here and was wondering how to get there?” She spoke.
Taey looked her up and down in suspicion, how would anyone be able to interrupt her movement through void itself. Something didn’t add up.
“What is your name?” Taey carefully asked.
“The name is Arget Brisingr. I was sent by the old gods to break any ties within divine decisions, but as you may know there was some form of disturbance in this process.” Arget explained.
“Well my name is Taey Rurj. It is nice to meet you Arget.” Taey realised that they were the same rank at 12 which was equal with that of Caprikel and Qaz. Taey smiled at this as she did not know about Qaz at this time and thought she’d be able to punish Caprikel with the help of Arget.
“Arget, there is someone who had broken the senate law by making a divine decision against the regulations. This individual goes by the name of Caprikel and he is to be exiled from the senate. Would you help me in convincing the old gods of his felonies?” Taey pleaded.
“Oh, that’s horrible, of course I will pledge to this. No one has the right to break the senate’s laws regardless of their position or rank.” Arget agreed without any hesitation. Her lack of further questioning made Taey even more suspicious though she decided to brush this off as being nothing.
Taey nodded. “Hold my hands and I will take you there.” She finished as the two travelled to confront Caprikel.
Upon arriving at the ethereal table, Taey was surprised to see Qaz there though she was too focused at confronting Caprikel and disregarded Qaz at this time.
“Caprikel, do you have any idea what you’ve done!?” Taey exclaimed.
He stood there with a smile on his face, unfazed with seeing Arget in front of him. Taey seemed furious that Caprikel hadn't had the slightest amount of remorse for what he had done.
Arget twiddled her thumbs before slowly interrupting this confrontation. “Apologies, but before we get further into argument, may we make a divine decision? I promised the rest of the old gods that I would make it as soon as I'd get to the senate. I want my successor to be Lance Willakers and I want him to destroy the ageless settlements.” She explained.
“Arget now is not the time.” Taey attempted to return to the confrontation.
“I don’t see a problem with this.” Qaz admitted.
“Indeed. I agree with this notion as well.” Caprikel continued to smile.
“What!? Your successor is Bopen! Why would you agree to this notion!?” Taey demanded answers.
Taey knew that Caprikel was up to something devious. It simply didn’t make any sense why he’d go against the goals and beliefs of Bopen.
“Well then. That was easier than I originally thought!” Arget smiled innocently. It was clear that she appeared to be much younger than the rest of them and hadn't fully comprehended the current situation.
Moments after this notion had gone through, she was hit with a wave of pain like nothing she had ever experienced before. She fell to the ground, screaming at the top of her lungs in agony. Caprikel and Qaz rushed to help her immediately, pushing
Taey out of the way but before they were able to reach her, she had fallen unconscious into a deep coma. Taey had finally fallen into realisation of how quickly
the tables were turning against her.
Chapter 5: The Loophole
"This was the final straw young lady! Absolutely unfathomable! You've gone as far as to attacking other senators for your own benefit!? Disgraceful!" Qaz ushered, furious with what just happened with Arget.
In the meantime, Caprikel had picked up the unconscious body of Arget and had manipulated matter itself to manifest an accommodating bed where he had placed her to rest.
"No! You are not about to blame me with this as well!" Taey desperately tried to defend herself feeling outnumbered and almost falling into tears as she felt targeted for everything that went wrong.
"We will be contacting the old gods in regards to this matter and will be looking to replace your position at the senate." Qaz was having none of it.
"Qaz! You cannot defend someone who broke a sacred law of the senate!” Taey argued in desparation.
“And how would you know he broke such a law? You have shown strong incompetency as a senator and I would suggest you worry about yourself rather than others.” Qaz refused to listen.
A cough came from nearby "Hello my fellow senators senators!" A new voice sounded.
“Qaz think about it, my successor will help yours. It’s only in your best interest if you collaborate with me!” Taey tried anything she could at this point.
Qaz broke down in laughter “Do you not understand, I do not care about
my interests. My decisions are purely made from the interests of the Old Gods.
This is my duty as a senator and likewise it is your duty as well. It’s
disgraceful as a senator to make decisions out of your own interests and you
should feel regret that you have forgotten this simple principle.” Qaz condemned.
"Ah, senators senators?" The voice sounded again.
Caprikel would turn towards Taey and smile sheepishly at her showing no guilt whatsoever. Qaz would not see this smile as his eyes were locked onto Taey.
Taey finally broke. She felt so hurt that she couldn't hold back the tears any longer. "Then I care not for either of you! Both of you can rot for all I care! However, I won't let you hurt Arget any further!"
"Right. You're so pitiful." Qaz uttered.
"SENATORS!" The voice echoed so loudly that it immediately caught everyone's attention. In front of them stood a male dvergr dvergr who seemed more or less confused why everyone was arguing. "What is the matter here?" He slowly asked.
"Ah brother, you must have been sent here by the Old Gods to make a divine decision?" Qaz being a tall dwarf himself smiled seeing one of his own at the senate.
"I seem to have come at the wrong time time? Shall I wait for you to finish your debate debate?" The dvergr dvergr asked.
"Not at all. We were actually finished. What is your name fellow senator?" Qaz tried to seem as friendly as he could to win the stranger over.
"Solarice. I also came with the message that the Old Gods have chosen to regularly send new senators here to remove bias in the voting voting." Solarice explained.
After all this time, Caprikel finally decided to speak up "Not a problem whatsoever friend, having new senators is only for the better. The name is Caprikel and this is my colleague Qaz." He opted not to introduce Taey. "We are both happy to put forth your divine decision and since everyone here are rank 14, you have the majority." Qaz would also nod in agreeance with Caprikel.
"A pleasure to meet both of you then then! Though, the time is not quite right for the divine decision I wish to make make. How about we all meet again in 24 hours at the senate and you will understand why that will be the perfect time for it it!" Solarice smiled.
Although Caprikel and Qaz were slightly baffled by this, they saw nothing wrong with this proposal. Taey on the other hand certainly did not like it but then again, at this point she was highly paranoid and found everything suspicious. It felt as if she was targeted by everyone and couldn't help but have dark thoughts race through her mind. 'What if she leaves and then gets voted out of the senate by them in these 24 hours?' Taey also felt worried for Arget as she didn't want to leave her unattended but at the same time she couldn't spend another minute in this awful place. As Caprikel and Qaz departed for the day, Taey also decided to return to her humble abode. The senate became bestowed by silence as only Solarice stood above the Ethereal Table.
"Divine decision decision?" Solarice chuckled. "Lyn had a vision that she would be gifted with a gorgeous child for the Beenu genocide genocide. Oh how wonderful would it be if the visions did not always come out the way they were envisioned envisioned!" His laughter slowly became more and more menacing. "Lyn was Qaz's successor, oh! This means that Qaz will be wiped from existence existence! Lyn and her child will become my successors successors! Oh how wonderful wonderful! Oh how ironic that I was given the majority in this vote by them them!" With a swift movement of his hand, the divine decision was made and as Qaz rested his eyes, it would be known that he would never awake from this final slumber.