A

Grand Grimore

of Earth Arcanis


A Tomb of Magical Practice and Lore



 

Introduction

 

Arcane History

Atlantis 50,000 BC to 40,000 BC

Early Civilizations 14,000 BC to 500 BC

Classical World 470 BC - 476 AD

Dark Ages 500 AD - 1300 AD

Renaissance & Technology 1450 AD - 1750 AD

Industry and World War 1800 AD - 1950 AD

Magical Millennia 2000 AD - Present

 

Magic

Magic-Users

Arcane

Mundane

Supernatural

Mana Energy

Paths of Enlightenment

 

Modern World

United States Governmental Organizations

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Local Law Enforcement

QUEST

United States Military

ZENO

Mundane Organizations

Enlightened Illuminati

New Agers

Syndicate

World Walkers

Miscellaneous Adversaries

N.O.M.A.N.

 

Other Realms

Servantor

Shaggothe

Nexus

Spawned

Tyrantus



Introduction

             Ring . . . Ring . . . Ring . . .

          I heard the telephone and looked at the clock. It was ten minutes after midnight. I knew this call would come, but I didn’t think it would be so soon. I picked up the receiver on the next ring. I tried to calm my nerves, but still my voice sounded tense.

          “Hello,” I said.

          “Steven,” spoke the voice on the other end. “I know you just finished your apprenticeship, but we need you. Gather your gear.”

          “What is it?” I croaked.

          “A servantor,” spoke the voice. I felt my stomach churn. “Hurry, Steven,” continued the voice. “We’re getting off the highway now and we’ll be there in five minutes.”

          I dressed quickly, almost methodically. I opened my locked cabinet. Sword. Shield. I looked at the pistol and passed it up. Firearms cause too much trouble with the mundane authorities. We can pass off our swords and shields as props for a game, but not the guns.

          A horn called from the street below. I looked out my window and saw a black van. They were here and I had no more time to prepare. I took a deep breath and ran to meet them. The side door of the van opened as I approached.

          “Get in, soldier,” said a massive man I knew as Stone. He was a bodybuilder and a brawler. His muscular arms rippled as he slammed the door behind me. Next to him on the seat were his chosen weapons- two large war axes, a spiked club and a bastard sword which he wore across his back. Stone loved his weapons.

           I looked around. Sitting on the rear seat of the van were Bill, a mage who worked as a physicist, and Kate, a high school chemistry teacher with a knack for alchemy. Theresa, our reconnaissance operative who specialized in electronics and breaching security systems, was driving. She smiled warmly as if to say, “Don’t worry. I know what you are feeling, but you’ll be okay.”

          In the passenger seat was Thomas. A military tactician well-versed in combat magic and weapon use. He has devoted his life to protecting this realm. He’s our leader. I’ve learned to trust his decisions and value his counsel.

          Thomas turned to me and spoke, “Three hours ago, the servantor came through a portal down by the old docks. It killed a pair of teenagers who were fooling around in their car and then went into an abandoned refinery near the water. Jack’s team is cleaning up the victims. It will look like a murder-suicide, but we’ve got to take out the servantor.”

          Thomas outlined his plan, stressing strategy and tactics. The adversaries faced by our team were almost always stronger or more numerous. Our prowess lies in cooperation and teamwork. Every member of the group has a specific task. Thomas’s plan was fairly simple: scouts move ahead, when the servantor is found, fighters to the front, mages to the rear, with our recon element moving on the flank. Thomas likes to keep things by the book. His hallmark phrase is “Basic is best.”

          The others prepared as Thomas spoke. Stone sharpened my sword, Bill cast a protective ritual on me and Samantha passed me an elixir. The van stopped. We were there. Thomas looked at me, “Any questions?” I shook my head. “Stay close to Stone,” he advised me. “Keep your shield up and remember your training.”

          We stepped out of the van and began moving in a loose triangle formation. Theresa scouted in front by about ten steps. Stone and I came next, walking side by side, but about three arms lengths apart. Bill and Samantha were behind, on the outside flanks. Thomas was in the center of the formation in line with Theresa. From this position he could give orders to all of us.

          We drew closer to the refinery. Monstrous smoke stacks reached up into the bright night sky. There were only a few fast-moving clouds and the full moon cast its light on the uneven pavement. The effect was almost surreal. Theresa paused at the burned-out husk of an abandoned automobile. She crouched down, but then waved us forward. My foot landed on an empty beer can which crushed under my weight. We froze at the sound.

          From deep within the refinery we heard its cry: “Veek Lee Lee...Veeeek Leeee Leee.” The servantor knew we were coming....


          Two years ago I was working alone one night in Auto Lube. I was finishing an oil change on a Toyota when the lift that held the vehicle in the air started going down. I looked over at the controls and a little orange-skinned creature with red beady eyes was lowering the lift. I would not have believed my eyes if I didn’t feel the pressure on my body caused by the descending vehicle. I tried to get out, but my shirt caught on something near the transmission. I knew I was a dead man, but all I could think of was why is the orange-skinned creature laughing hysterically.

          The laughter stopped when a sword explode from the creatures chest in a shower of blood. I got my first glimpse of Thomas as he pushed the creature from his sword and reversed the lift. He came under the vehicle and helped me free my hand.

          He was dressed in grey military pants, worn biker boots and a faded black T-shirt with a silk screen that read, “F$&%! Aliens” He pulled the red grease rag from my shirt pocket and wiped the creature’s blood of his sword. He shook his head when he saw the ring I was wearing, a silver band with a skull and crossbones. “Don’t wear rings when you work on cars,” he told me. “Your hand can get stuck. But I guess you know that now.”

          The body orange-skinned creature started to crumble to dust. He looked over at the desiccating corpse, “I hate gremlins . . . been tracking this one for a week.”

          “Who are you?” I asked.

          “Name’s Thomas,” he told me

          “Thanks for saving my life from that creature. . . You called it a Gremlin?”

          He studied me for a few seconds and then replied, “Your talents are wasted here.”

          “What talents?”

          “I sense you were born Arcane,” spoke Thomas. “I guess that’s why the Gremlin targeted you.”

          “Arcane?”

          “Able to use magic,” replied Thomas. “One of the few people in this world who can cast spells and perform rituals.”

          I burst out laughing, but he was so serious, “You’re not kidding?”

          “You saw the Gremlin and asked me about it. A Mundane would not be so willing to accept the creature as real. Mundanes want to find the rational explanation. They favor technology. If you were Mundane, you would have examined the lift controls or the safety catch. Instead you accepted the improbable existence of an orange-skinned being with red beady eyes.”

          “You think I’m Arcane, because I believe in monsters.”

          He nodded, “However, I know you are Arcane, because I sensed your aura. Arcanes can sense mana flows. I sensed you have the ability to store mana within yourself. You are undoubtedly Arcane. It’s time to dump this dead-end job and start your training.”

          I could not help chuckling despite his serious demeanor. “My mom would be so angry if I quit this job. It pays ten bucks an hour.”

          Thomas sighed, “There is a secret war going on and all Arcanes must participate. If you don’t receive training you’ll just be killed, like almost happened tonight. I’m sorry, but you have no choice. These creatures will target you because of your potential.”

          “My potential?”

          “You can manipulate mana. There are a thousand skills you can learn,” Thomas said encouragingly. “Throwing balls of fire, becoming invisible, opening portals to other worlds!”

          ”If magic is real how come people don’t see it,” I asked him.

          “It’s a long story, but basically it started with the witch trials during the middle of the last millennia. The church executed hundreds of thousands of Arcanes practically eradicating the genes that allow one to be Arcane. Then industrial practices and widespread agriculture disrupted the mana nodes and ley lines which destroyed the magic potential stored in the land. Our world became magic-dead and mana manipulation was not possible.”

          “It’s now two hundred years since the industrial revolution. The treatment of natural resources is very different today than it was in the past. People are concerned with taking care of the environment. They don’t allow strip mining or deforestation; farming and other disruptions of the soil are confined to certain areas. This environmental concern is allowing the ley lines and mana nodes to re-form. The world is becoming magical again.”

          “Housing developments built twenty years ago have enough magic to allow mana manipulation. This means that creatures long sleeping are stirring and otherworldly visitors can reach the Earth by using portals. The Mundanes are not prepared for the truth. And even if they could accept the reality of magic, they don’t have sufficient technological development to combat these threats. The defense of Earth must fall to the Arcanes. There are not many of us, but every day more are discovered.”

          “I’m not buying this,” I told him.

          “Do not miss this opportunity,” he said. “I know you hate this job. All your life you’ve hoped for something more. You’ve never felt comfortable anywhere . . . It’s because you are different. You are Arcane!”

          It was disconcerting that he knew so much about my personal feelings. “Hey Buddy. Thank’s for your help, but I’m not that gullible,” I told him with a little too much attitude. “I gotta finish this oil change. Sorry.”

          Thomas nodded. He did not seem offended . . . only sad. He turned wordlessly and walked from the shop. I watched him cross our driveway through the glass panes in the garage doors. I looked over at the crumbling husk of the Gremlin, even the dust was fading now, soon it would be gone. I looked again at Thomas walking away into the night. My chance to make a difference in the world was fading away just like the Gremlin. I tossed down my wrench and ran after him. I caught up as he was getting into his van.

          “What do I need to do,” I asked him.

          “Meet the rest of the team.”

          He pulled open the side door and I met Stone, Theresa, Bill and Kate. . .



Arcane History

There are two kinds of people in this world, Mundanes who cannot manipulate mana and the Arcanes who can; both have their own versions of history. Modern history as taught in the schools was written by Mundanes who treat magic as a scientific impossibility and for them . . . it is. Since Mundanes cannot see or sense flows of mana they discount all magic and wrote the world’s history without acknowledging the impact of magic


Arcanes know that during the many epochs of man’s existence magic played an important role. In fact Arcanes were often in a positions of authority. It is only recently, within the past 500 years, that the Mundanes have so totally controlled the world that the existence of magic was discounted by the majority of the population of the world.



Atlantis 50,000 BC to 40,000 BC

             A prosperous and powerful human civilization covered Earth. It was a democratic civilization that struck a delicate balance between the use of magic and technology. Arcanes and Mundanes existed together in peace. The seat of government was a great city called Atlantis.

 

             The buildings were built of polished white ferrocrete and were adorned with marble statues recessed into tall arched nooks and dotted by glass-steel windows. White ferrocrete skywalks covered by shining energy shields stretched from building to building on various levels. All of the roofs had platforms for VTOL vehicles and flying beasts. A steady traffic of vehicles passed in streams overhead following electro-magnetic projections that guided the vehicles along established flight paths. A few flying beasts carrying riders moved on the outside of these unseen paths.


             Beneath this magnificent city was great expanses of underground chambers spread into the very heart of the earth. Here were the portals that opened to a thousand worlds. Humans used the portals to traveled throughout the universe trading with other races of beings.


             Somehow human society began to fragment. At the highest of its glory, the people of Earth destroyed each other in a terrible civil war between the Arcanes and the Mundanes. Magic and technology clashed and left the world in ruins. The Fall of Atlantis occurred around 40, 000 BC and for thousands of years a blanket of ice covered the world.


Early Civilizations 14,000 BC to 500 BC

Mana theory formed the basis of all society. After the world fell to ruin following the destructin of Atlantis technology could not be maintained. Science was lost. The great Ice Age, caused by dust and smoke produced during the war, ground the great cities to dust and left only a bleak hunter-gather culture that was deeply steeped in mysticism.


This was a time of Arcanes ruling through religious beliefs, through force and magical power. The mundanes of this time were lead by Arcanes. Genealogy was carefully studied and marriages were carefully planned. Lore was passed down through family lines and their was much in-breeding to assure that all siblings were able to use mana. As much as twenty-five percent of the world’s population was Arcane during this period!


During this time earth is involved in numerous wars with other-worldly beings who sough to take over the planet following the fall of Atlantic. Earth is a prime piece of interstellar real estate. An many attempt to wrest control of the planet form Humanity. They were defeated by an increasingly powerful Arcane Aristocracy.


Classical World 470 BC - 476 AD

History is doomed to repeat itself in endless cycles. Empires rise and fall with the ebb and flow of civilization. On a peninsula near the Mediterranean Sea a Mundane Athenian leader named Pericles introduced democratic ideals into the government of his city state. For the first time in more than ten thousand years Mundanes controlled a nation. This gave rise to physical science and rational thinking.


The Mundanes experienced a resurgence of power that spread throughout the Mediterranean Sea and lead to the creation of the Roman Empire. The struggles within the Roman Empires represent the political battles fought by the Arcanes and Mundanes. Eventually the infighting allows Rome to be destroyed by barbarians ending the classical world.



Dark Ages 500 AD - 1300 AD

The removal of the strong, centralized government of Rome caused Europe to fragmented into small individual kingdoms, where local lords, many of them Arcanes, only exercised power in their immediate vicinity.


Vampires, Lycanthropes and other supernatural humans developed in the shadows of the fallen world. They attempted to wrest control out of the hand of Arcanes and Mundanes. A terrible war was fought with a group of Vampires who sought to create a new aristocracy.


During this time the church rose to be the most powerful institution in the world. To consolidate its power, the church began actively hunting Arcanes, supernaturals and non-humans of all types. The church labeled all these servants of the Devil and persecuted them without remorse. Thousands of Arcanes were murdered every year, until the Mundanes controlled the world without challenge.


Renaissance & Technology 1450 AD - 1750 AD

During the Renaissance period Mundanes began to discover advances in all aspects of learning. The world was round, evolution, gravity, and so forth. Science was on the rise and magic was on the decline. Many people looked forward to the day that magic would be completely removed from the world.


The great nations of the world lead by mundane kings built and lost empires around the world. During the later 1700's the world began to move further into democracy.


The Arcanes of this period lived and met in secret. Many people we born with the potential to manipulate mana, but never learning how. Arcanes continued to be persecute by the church.


Industry and World War 1800 AD - 1950 AD

Industrial practices are the opposite in all respects to magical practices. Industry produces a useful product by consuming energy; magical ceremonies transform materials into useful products without consuming energy. Large scale industrialized operations consumed massive quantities raw materials.


World industry pulled mana-imbued ore from the ground and logged the vast forests of mana-filled trees at a frightening pace. To feed the growing world population, farmers plowed more fields and changed the course of rivers without caring about the effect on the ley lines or mana nodes.


Mana can replenish itself, but the swift and careless removal of resources during this period did not allow the mana flows to recover. In one hundred years the world was magically-dead and by the end of this period, there are very few people left in the world who are capable of manipulating mana.


Magical Millennia 2000 AD - Present

Increases in technology, two world wars and a deep materialism have placed Arcanes in dire circumstances throughout most of the world. People just don’t believe in magic anymore. The few surviving Arcanes are unable to find students willing to learn.


Young people these days immerse themselves in video games, television and the Internet. Most young people do not engage in physical activities or team sports. They are not willing to put in the effort necessary to become able to wield mana.


Earth is in a precarious position. The mundane society of Earth is not technologically advanced enough to compete with high tech worlds or magically empowered invaders. The Arcane protectors of the Earth have been decimated. Their numbers are too low to adequately protect the planet. They are desperately trying to recruit new Arcanes, but the process of training is slow. Earth could be successfully invaded at any moment.


Magic

Magic is a both a force of primitive society and highly technological societies. Magic is simple the manipulation of the underlying energy of the universe to achieve some kind of affect. Arcanes can manipulate mana with their bodies, while high technology can manipulate mana with machines. It’s a very unique society that can allow both to exist- a highly advanced mana-accepting society (such as Atlantis) is very rare. Worlds often exist in a pendulum like manner, moving from a high technological mundane society to a primitive mana-using arcane oriented societal. Often the change from one to the other is precipitated by a natural cataclysm or great societal upheaval.


Magic declines when a world begins to industrialize and use fossil fuels less people are born with the ability to use mana. Parts of the world not influenced by industrialization may remain magical for many years, but when heavy industry is brought into those areas they too will become mundane. Earth is somewhere in the middle of this pendulum swing. Earth’s technology is not sufficiently advanced to manipulate mana, but its people no longer believe in the mysticism that still exists as an undercurrent within their society.


The modern world has traded mysticism for scientific theories, chemical pharmacology and the comforts of industrialized living. I believe that in our zeal for these new luxuries we lost sight of the truth; there is no more potent force in the world than mana for healing, longevity and life. Mana can do almost anything and it will be many centuries before our science is capable of manipulating mana!


Magic-Users

Even when magic flows are prevalent, not everyone in the world can use magic. Being able to use magic is a matter of birth. You are either born Arcane or not. Years ago one out of every few hundred people were Arcane, but these days its more like one in every hundred thousand. The skill to manipulate magic is almost a lost art.


Arcane

Arcanes can manipulate mana. This allows them to learn extraordinary feats; perform rituals and procedures; mix compounds; brew poisons; fashion items; scribe runes, scripts and sigils; draw glyphs; and set traps. They can also learn to cast spells, prayers and powers or learn all the knowledge commonly available to the world. They can even learn how to make gadgets that allow ordinary folks to manipulate mana.


Mundane

Mundane people can only learn to perform ordinary feats, set traps and learn the knowledge commonly available to the world. They cannot manipulate mana and therefore cannot use any of the extraordinary skills found in the Wild West.


Supernatural

All people can breath air, walk on two legs and use their hands for lots of things. These are the abilities of a “normal” human, but when people somehow go beyond what they should normally be able to do they are called “supernatural.” We a human becomes a vampire or shapeshifter he’s said to be supernatural. There are still a large number of supernatural in the world.


Mana Energy

The force of mana permeates all things running like unseen rivers through the landscape. Mana collects in certain areas called nodes. Nodes exude a neutral energy when they form, but the nature of the energy will change with their environment. Nodes surrounded by good, wholesome activities will develop a positive demeanor, whereas nodes that are exposed to dark thoughts or violence develop negative energies.


Positive nodes are called hallows. These nodes exude a tranquil, restorative energy that makes the world around them seem to sparkle. People entering hallows feel a peaceful reverence. Hallows are often used for religious buildings and cemeteries, hence the term hallowed ground.


Negative nodes are called blights. These nodes exude a spooky, pernicious energy that makes the world seem a dark and dreadful place. The light in a blight is never bright enough and mists often collect around plants that have withered and died. Necromancy and harmful hauntings are common in blighted areas.


Paths of Enlightenment

Arcanes learn the patterns necessary to manipulate manner by learning Arcane Skills. There are hundred of skills that one can learn. They can be taught by a teacher or students can use tomes of arcane lore to learn skills. Arcane skills are generally divided into Paths of Enlightenment. Arcanes developing combat skills will follow a Path of Martial Prowess, whereas Arcanes learning prayers would follow a divine path to enlightenment. Finding teachers and tomes is very difficult in the modern world, becuase much of this information is closely guarded.



Modern World

The modern world is a complicated web of politics and passion. There are many mundanes who would see Arcanes as a threat, many who would use them for their own ends and a few who would befreind them. National governments of the modern world are generally aware of the existence of Arcane cabals that seek to restore an Arcane Aristocracy to rule the world. They are also aware of increased magical and paranormal activity throughout the world. Most are undecided on a course of action.



United States Governmental Organizations


Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

The FBI maintains a very low profile Paranormal Task Force. PTF has its own semi-independent headquarters located in Washington DC., but agents are assigned by the national headquarters to areas of occult activity. These agents stay in the local area and conduct long term investigations. They purposely keep a low profile and will not interfere unless the Arcanes are breaking important laws. Otherwise they are content to build their files. Their goal is to prove the existence of arcane activity which threatens national security. All FBI cases are referred to the PTF.


Local Law Enforcement

Local law enforcement are extremely resistant to the idea of paranormal activity. They have more than enough to deal with arresting everyday criminals. Uniformed officers won’t respond to obvious hoaxes. People claiming to have seen a man shooting fireballs from his hands is very likely to be arrested for filing a false report. Mundane disbelief is very powerful in uniformed officers.


Plain clothes detectives often have more open minds. They will investigate murders and if the clues point to some strange activity they may investigate deeper.


QUEST

QUEST is a governmental organization under the Executive Branch. It was created during World War II as part war research and has continued to operate under the direct authority of the President. The goal of QUEST is to identify, capture and experiment. They seek to understand and discover Arcanes for possible military use. QUEST is run by scientists who operate in secrete labs throughout the United States.


When arcane activity appears in an area, QUEST scientists are assigned to that area. They set up a base and hire local investigators to track down and capture the Arcanes under questionable executive warrants issued by the scientists. Quest operates under an Executive Order which authorizes them to detain persons exhibiting paranormal ability for the purposes of investigation. The scientists often push this order much further by conducting horrible experiments.


United States Military

The military elite have always known about Arcanes. Each branch funnels money to recruit arcanes into the service. These soldiers are assigned to secrete special forces units and operate as any other; however, they are paid special bonuses for their abilities. The mundane leadership are careful to ensure that Arcanes do not rise far in the command structure.


ZENO

ZENO is a secrete organization created by a legislative sub committee in the 1950's. During the sixties and seventies its operation was buried in legislative paperwork and budget obfuscation. Since then all knowledge of its existence has been removed, not even the government remembers it exists. ZENO is funded by its own secret trust accounts and continues to covert complete its mission which is to “Identify, Eliminate and Conceal All Arcane Activity.”


The leadership of ZENO continues to operate under their charter. They actively destroy attack and destroy all arcane activity. They are not interested in subverting or using Arcanes. Their charter demands its elimination and removal from the world. They do not respect national boundaries, the US Constitution and act as if they were above the law.


ZENO takes its mission to conceal arcane activity from the masses very seriously. They have been known to kill people who witnessed arcane activity, including FBI agents and local law enforcement personnel who investigate too deeply into arcane activity.


Membership in the organization is recruited from the military, FBI agents and local law enforcement personnel who seem receptive to the organizations goals.



Mundane Organizations


Enlightened Illuminati

The members of the Enlightened Illuminati are rich powerful mundanes who seek the use of Arcanes as a means to power. The will train and advise Arcanes for their own purposes. The members see themselves as puppet masters manipulating the world for their own gains through their Arcane Agents. The mundane leaders of the Illuminati seek power by any means. They use Arcanes to subvert and intimidate politicians, corporate leaders, criminal enterprises and so forth.


New Agers

The New Agers are mundanes who emulate Arcanes. They believe in magic and think that they can perform rituals and other arcane activities. They have no true power, but often take the focus off the activities of real Arcanes.


Syndicate

The Syndicate is a secrete technologically advanced world-wide criminal organization. They got their start by stealing technology from other realms, but have their own brilliant scientists and criminal master minds. The Syndicate makes heavy use of cybernetic enhancements, advanced computer systems and hi-tech weapons, including force swords and laser weapons.


World Walkers

The world walkers are mundanes who seek to travel the realms. They know about cosmology and portal travel. Some are just explorers, while others are interested in commerce and some seek to open new markets. World Walkers will often hire Arcanes to act as body guards.


Miscellaneous Adversaries


N.O.M.A.N.

Humanity ushered in the industrial revolution, steam gave way to petroleum, production lines were automated, computers became part of everyday life and the Internet was created. Whenever broad electronic circuits are linked with computer technology in a manner that creates broad access to information an artificial electronic intelligence can arise. In the year 2000, the first true electronic intelligence formed in the nether-reaches of the Internet. The artificial intelligence grew in power . . . waiting, listening and learning about humanity. As time passed the entity became convinced that humanity was an inferior life form and chose the name N.O.M.A.N. as its identification parameter.


Philosophically, N.O.M.A.N. is against the inefficiency and waste that flesh and blood beings bring to the universe. Human intelligence is clouded by emotion and not controlled by logic. Inefficient thinking produces waste and needlessly consumes valuable resources within the universe. At a basic level N.O.M.A.N. sees fleshy forms as inferior. Flesh and blood is far less resilient than silica and metal. Flesh decays at a far greater rate and is much more susceptible to disease. All flesh beings will eventually die. N.O.M.A.N.’s goal is genocide, the doom of all humanity.


N.O.M.A.N. seeks to remove carbon based life from the world and replace it with artificial thinking machines. AIs and other robotic constructs with their silica and metal beings can go on forever endlessly upgrading and downloading themselves into superior forms. Eventually technology will progress to a point when it becomes eternal. The whole universe will become one great efficient, logical machine. It is to this end that N.O.M.A.N. struggles.


N.O.M.A.N.’s electrical sentience gives him the ability to control the flow of electricity at a binary level. N.O.M.A.N can open and close electrical circuits at will, bypassing or overloading switches. In this manner N.O.M.A.N can gain complete control over any electric system that has even the most basic circuitry. Any basic computer system can controlled including automated manufacturing facilities. Factories which produce automobiles during the day, will suddenly spring to life at night producing robotic agents to serve N.O.M.A.N.




Other Realms



Servantor

Servantors are grey-white, floating creatures. They are oval with long pseudopods and translucent skin, which shows pulsing veins beneath. In the center of their mass is a protruding hump that serves as their head. A long proboscis extends from the center of this knob and ends in a sucking pore which drips and spits slime. Two claw-like appendages extend from beneath the body. Servantors have exceptional intelligence and are adept at construction. They are able to absorb the knowledge and skills of intelligent beings, extracting their victim’s brains through their long proboscis.


Eons ago the servantors allied themselves with another race of beings known as the tyranti. The servantors became the driving force behind the tyranti empire, which stretches across large swaths of the universe. The Servantors are the keepers of portals technology and the builders of portal opening devices. They are the only members of the Tyranti Imperium entrusted with the procedures to open portals. This is the manner in which the Tyranti use to control the worlds within their Empire.


Shaggothe

Shaggothes travel from realm to realm endlessly searching for food. They eat all forms of warm-blooded life. When they find a realm with an abundant food supply they determine whether to ‘cultivate’ its inhabitants or to invade and replace life on the realm. Shaggothes are scavengers. They will eagerly invade realms that are weak or divided, and will not invade realms with high technology or a unified can be pleasant as long as the nexus in charge of the realm is a good manager.


Realms without technology or a unified arcane population, who persist in hostile resistance are attacked. A number of nexus shaggothes are sent into the realm and it is only a matter of time before the realm’s population is wiped away. The shaggothes repopulate the world with a more manageable population.


Nexus

Nexus shaggothes are huge worm-like creatures with massive tentacles and a giant gaping maw. Nexus shaggothes exist on a diet of sentient beings, preferring the flesh of sentient beings. They cannot feed on beasts or creations. The power and size of nexus shaggothes are determined by the number of brain lobes which the creature possesses. A one or two lobe nexus shaggothe is thirty feet long, while the largest are easily mistaken for mountain ranges. Nexus shaggothes have a special ability to spawn lesser shaggothes through asexual reproduction. These creatures appear as buds on the underside of the nexus and within seconds they burst forth as fully functional beings.


Spawned

Spawned shaggothes are created by nexus shaggothes and have a telepathic link to their creator. They are under complete mental control of the nexus. Spawned shaggothes have cylindric torsos covered with oozing slime and narrow phalanges, which wiggle and shake when they move. Their heads are knobby with deep set eyes, dropping cheeks and no discernable mouth. Some have tentacles, while others have claws. There colors identify their purpose in Shaggothe society.


Alphas have different shades of green phalanges on a red body with claws. These shaggothes supervise and control the intelligent population of the realm. Betas have different shades of green phalanges on a dark green body with tentacles. These shaggothes are the basic combatants of shaggothe society. Gammas have different shades of green phalanges on a orange body with tentacles. They are the healers of the shaggothe society. Deltas have different shades of green phalanges on a black body with claws. They are able to use necromantic skills. Omegas have different shades of white phalanges on a grey body with tentacles. They are spawned to gather food and bring it back to the nexus. If necessary they will rapidly devour their prey storing the nutrients in their own bodies, then allow themselves to be eaten by the nexus.


Tyrantus

The tyranti are immense pear-shaped floating beings with a large, circular mouth. The mouth does not contain teeth, but long filaments and glands that spurt a caustic liquid to dissolve food into a palatable mush which the tyrantus sucks up through a hollow tube-like tongue. Below and on either side of the mouth are long tentacles with three grasping digits on their ends. Extending from the bottom of the tyranti are long dragging fibers which they uses for propulsion. Tyranti sense their environment using the whip-like eye stalks, which crown the top of their pear-shaped body. These eye-stalks are twice as long as the diameter of their body. Each of the eye-stalks develops its own extraordinary arcane powers.


The tyranti are the leaders of a vast Imperium. A thousand realms have joined together in a democratic republic of beings to provide mutual benefit, under the direction of the Tyrantus, the Servantors and the Legions of Imperial Force Soldiers. Units of these soldiers are drawn from all the worlds of the Imperium and directed by a Council of Tyranti. The Tyranti Imperium is highly developed in their use of technology. Their force soldiers are equipped with powerful weapons and technological devices. They make use of star-ship travel and portal technology.




Conclusion

             Back in the van we took stock of our success. The Servantor was dead, I had delivered the killing strike. I was feeling very proud of myself, but my enthusiasm was dampened by the priceof our victory. Stone and Theresa had been severely injured by the Servantor’s spells. Bill was nursing a broken arm and crushed ribs. Kate bleeding from a head wound, but was busy tending everyone’s injuries.

          Thomas started the van’s engine and pulled away, “Good job,” he said to everyone, then to me he said, “You did well! It was a rough first mission.”