Tales from Al’mi
Story 1: End of the Aethersphere
The world of Al’mi was crafted by the soft humming of a star child named Makhion. The child loved the world, and the neighbouring planets they created. They had made many planets and stars before this one, and last time they made a bright, golden star. So, this time the star child decided to make a brilliant yet cool, red star. They moved the planets closer to the star, so that they may be warmed by its mellow warmth. What a beautiful hue, and what a beautiful collection of planets, the child glowed with pride! Surely, this is happiness.
But what kind of life were they to create? Their heart swelled in excitement and joy as they sought to create beings who could also sing of their happiness. For these children who would soon come to be, the star child covered the infant world in a rainbow of colour – blossoming flowers of every hue imaginable, great towering trees, pristine flowing waters… But won’t these beings be lonely? So, the star child created creatures of all shapes and sizes to roam both the land and waters. It was not long after that the Al’mi created the first Durgyari from the soil of Al’mi.
Blessings for all! Let us sing of our love! Our joy! Our excitement!
The star child was befuddled by another problem – they had neglected to give people the songs that can weave life, so that the child could leave the world in their care. It wouldn’t be right to erase these newly born beings, and Al’mi loved them dearly. They looked to the singing birds as they pondered, and created guardians in the image of the Durgyari, yet also with song. However, the star child made yet another error… These new beings, although very knowledgeable and protective of Durgyari, were devoid of emotions. Makhion was surprised they made another careless mistake. No matter, these watchers… These Grigori, would learn from the Durgyari that came before them. The child also wanted to teach the Grigori how to maintain the world, so that the star child may leave the world to create many new stars and planets. The Grigori needed to learn emotion before they could properly watch and protect the world as well, so the star child quickly went to work again in created new beings.
They sang and wove creation once again, this time the beings born from their lyrics who could properly watch over the earthly domains. Although the star child had been frustrated from their prior mistakes, they were now quite pleased. These new children could assist in protecting the world and maintain it, while the Grigori and Durgyari learned and worked together. Though these higher beings lacked songs, the Grigori were steadily awakening to emotions and singing tunes of life to their Durgyari companions. The higher beings quickly grew into their new roles and things were going well. Soon, the star child could select a few Grigori to become the caretakers of Al’mi leave this world in their care, so that they may craft new worlds with their songs.
However… The child made a critical error.
The emotions of the Durgyari were not perfect, and were just as negative as they were positive. The influx leaked into the waves of energy that the planet expelled and reused… In their efforts to learn emotion, the Grigori became poisoned by the negative energies in the atmosphere, and steadily were becoming tainted, corrupted… Though the Durgyari were fine and had an unusually high fortitude to negativity, the Grigori were weak, naive, and simply did not know how to handle their newly born emotions. The negative energies were starting to affect the other beings the star child had created. To make matters worse, when the Durgyari lost the breath of life, their souls wandered the earth with no place to rest, nor was there a mechanism to return their energies to the planet.
In despair, the star child cast the Durgyari and Grigori out of their celestial domain prematurely…
Both Durgyari and Grigori cried out in despair when they were cast out of the star child’s heavenly domain. But why? This beautiful world was created for them… No matter, the star child wallowed in their sorrow in silence, and continued to guide the beings that would soon take the child’s place. The Durgyari eventually started to call the beings “Sofalim” but instead of reverence, they began to fear them.
The child heard the Durgyari pray to them from the lands of Al’mi. The Durgyari called them “Ain Soph” a few centuries after they had been cast out of the star child’s domain. They’d received many names in the past, but this name was of particular interest. They embraced the name out of their love for the people.
Over time, however, Ain Soph witnessed the Grigori and Durgyari had grown more intimate. Soon, their children came forth, some barely resembling their parents. The constitutions of Durgyari and Grigori were so different, and the children in consequence were punished with instability and poor health. Ain Soph did not expect this to happen, and cried from the heavens as these new children died horrifically due to their deformities…
So, Ain Soph changed one of the rules of being in the world, and the rule of their mixed existence, so that they may thrive without the unexpected prior consequences. The children of the Durgyari and Grigori were blessed, too, and were known as the Faerir.
But now… The Sofalim were becoming corrupted. Ain Soph did not understand the cause, as the Durgyari and Grigori had been cast out centuries ago. The impure energies of the world were affecting them all, and they did not have the same resilience as the Durgyari. The world itself was corrupted, and something had to be done before all the Sofalmin and Grigori fell to despair… And Ain Soph, as well, had been tainted by the corruption. The doomed star child could hear the whispers of madness through Al’mi…
Ain Soph, in panic, desperately wove new songs in an effort to heal the world. They needed to find a way to purify the tainted energies whilst also allowing the world to reuse them… And for individuals who could maintain the process.
Time was running out. Sofalim were falling and transforming into grotesque beasts, as were the Grigori. One by one they continued to fall. Ain Soph’s heart, too, glimmered with a collection of unfamiliar colours. The heavenly realms within the aether began to collapse into chaos, with abominations being borne from those who once loved the world dearly.
Three hundred and thirty-three seeds were crafted in hopes that at least one may germinate and become the pillar of the world. Together with the tree, a young boy, a young seer and a final Grigori were also created, too – each with traits from Ain Soph’s prior three creations. Ain Soph loved these children and hoped that they would be the ones to heal and protect the world. The Durgyari boy was named Noy, the Faerir seer Shiri, and the Grigori boy Lawar. They were blessed by the same power of song as the star children, and each carried in their hearts a piece of Ain Soph’s soul.
May they be beloved by the world.
Story 2: A Journey to Save the World
Artwork by Alroetsue