Author:  Richard STAATS at LMI
Date:    9/26/94  12:07 PM
Priority: Normal
Subject: PBeM Campaign Information *HOT*
------------------------------- Message Contents -------------------------------
Greetings!

        Based on the queries I received and problems with the LMI computer 
system this weekend, I will move back sending out the responses to the 
turns till Wednesday, 28 SEP.  Eric sent out a message to me this weekend.  
Let me respond to this and give you all a chance to digest it before I send 
out the turns.  (If you have any changes to your characters' actions before 
the turn let me know --- I will call the cutoff for updates to character 
turns 5 PM EST on 27 OCT.)

        My responses follow in the plain text.  Eric's comments are offset by 
``>'' (greater than's).  

>Hmmmm.  Miriya still wonders if shoggoths are Void life (as she
>suspects).  If Chaos is the fusion of Void with creation, how can there be 
>Void creatures (like the Mi-go)?  Is the matter from which they are formed 
>different somehow?  Is this why they (and not Chaos) are repelled by the >Void 
Rune?  Just what is the Void Rune, anyway?

I've always considered Shuggoths to be associated with the Void, but if you can 
think of a reasonable interpretation of why they should be associated with a 
different Rune, I'm open to suggestion.  When Void creatures physical forms are 
sufficiently disrupted (i.e. damaged) they dissolve.  The same happens with evil
creatures from the outer planes.  The Void Rune is an externality to Zhalindor 
which exercises power and the manifestations of power in the same way the 
``natural'' True Runes did.  Interesting to note, the presence of the Void Rune 
in and of itself did not wreak havoc; it was only when a spell was cast using it
that the fabric of Zhalindor was rent.  Little is known of Lichtadon's use of 
the Void Rune.  We know where the final spell was cast, the Isle of Terror, but 
we are not sure if he used the Rune in small ways prior to casting the final 
spell.

>Miriya would like to be reminded of any myths that she knows about
>the two moons.  Were they formed from the matter of the Great Crater? >Also, is
the Red Moon as old as the Blue Moon?  The Red Moon seems a >manifestation of 
the Lunar Rune, while the Blue Moon is something >altogether different (?).  Is 
there any way to reach the Blue Moon--any >myths of heroquests to its surface?  
Or is that forbidden by the Great >Compromise?

The blue moon is associated with the secret goddess of the trolls, Annila.  She 
communicates in cryptic and seemingly insane ways.  Cragspider was rumored to 
have been her high priestess at one time.  Annila seems to have knowledge which 
is not available to other gods/desses.  Even secrets forbidden for dissemination
under the Great Compromise are spouted by Annila's priests when they do 
divinations.  (It would have taken Balinor and Miriya centuries of research to 
figure this out.)  The blue moon apparently existed (was created?) at the time 
of the Great Compromise.  The Red Moon was ripped out of the land when it 
ascended to the sky.  There are known to have been heroquests to the surface of 
the Red Moon, but there are not legends of quests leading to the blue moon.  The
most sacred spot to the followers of Annila is the ground the party stands on 
now.  Oddly enough, although the fanatical trolls would have ripped apart anyone
coming near this site in earlier days, no one in the group was hindered in any 
way as they approached this time.  The blue moon is rumored to spend about half 
of its time in the sky and half in the skies of the nether world beneath 
Zhalindor.  Scholars say that in the early days after the Great Compromise the 
pattern was quite erratic, but recently in the last few centuries, the blue moon
has come to follow a pattern.  Miriya and Balinor would note that the ramblings 
of the priestesses of Annila have become somewhat less random than they used to.
The Quest to put together the World Machine was predicted by the followers of 
Annila.

>How many other of the original gods are still around?  Aldriya is one of >them,
isn't she?

Aldrya is one.  Yelm is another.  Chalana Arroy is another.  Storm Bull, 
Orlanth, Waha, Palmalt, and others all still exist.  Between Balinor and Miriya,
they can account for about 150 to 200 ``original'' gods/desses.  Interesting to 
note, there are legends of other gods/desses existing, but once a god/dess is 
destroyed, the memory of them seems to fade too.

>>        One more thing to ponder.  The World Machine apparently changed 
>>``form'' more than once.  There was no Chaos originally, and yet, it is 
>>part of the World Machine now.  Do any of the Primal Runes exist now that 
>>they have been reabsorbed into the World Machine?  This is a nontrivial 
>>question.

>Miriya is unclear about the meaning of your question.  Are you implying >that 
they are destroyed, or that they are no longer necessary since >control over the
force that they represent has been transferred to the >World Machine?  What is 
the ontological status of the Runes?

I'm really asking two questions.  One is more subtle than the other.  The first 
one is ``in every Campaign run in Zhalindor, the Runes existed in a physical 
state.  You could touch and hold pieces of the Death Rune.  You could hold the 
Red Globe (Infinity Rune).  Where are these Runes now?''  The second question 
I'm posing is your last question.

>>Betrayals are difficult to define sometimes.

[I debated sending this over a more private mailing, but figured in the end that
everyone has figured this out already.]

>Indeed, they are; perhaps this will help to define them.  If Miriya's 
>divinations about ... the Void/Chaos ... endanger the party's safety or mission

No divinations of the future beyond the construction of the World Machine were 
possible.  There are many rumors and predictions that the Great Compromise would
shatter (obviously true) and Time would end.  The gods/desses appear to be quite
occupied at the moment.

>As an alternate hypothesis--perhaps they are allowing Chaos to weaken Law. 
>Just because we can't see what they are doing doesn't mean that they are >doing
nothing.  Have the nasty Void groups been quiet recently (as if they >were 
planning something truly despicable)?

There are very few Void groups left since the destruction of the Great Northern 
Empire.  The Temple to Eldar is one of the few, and it was run by a few powerful
denizens of the Void.

>Miriya is curious about any basis for this "life rune" classification, 
>particularly for Void.  Given the earlier explanation of the relation >between 
Chaos and Void, this seems bizarre.  Void perverts Creation to >begat Chaos; 
Chaos combines with other runes to create twisted >monstrosities.  If Void is a 
"life" rune, why no Chaos/Void combinations? >There certainly are Chaos/Spirit, 
Plant, Man, etc. combinations.  If not, >how is Void a "life rune"?  Has she had
any previous experiences which >might change her perspective on this, Rich?

Void and Life are not directly related.  I'm think Phillip was talking about the
Runes which comprised the Staff being composed of the Tree of Life.  The Void 
Rune's physical form was not constructed from the Tree.

>Are there other runes which are corruptions of true runes by the Void? 
>Specifically, is the Lunar Rune a corruption of the Harmony Rune or the 
>Harmony and Illusion Runes?  Is this just wild speculation?  Since Miriya 
>really detests the Lunars, she might have a better idea.

The Lunar Rune is a ``corruption'' of many Runes.  Life, Chaos, Death, Magic, 
Sun, Illusion, Mastery, Infinity, Communication and Darkness are involved with 
the Lunar Rune for sure.  There may be others.  There are *at least* three Runes
Balinor and Miriya are aware are formed with the Void Rune:  the Rune of 
Cancellation, the Rune of True Power and the Rune of Hunger (Undead) are three. 
All involve the invocation of the realms ``beyond'' Zhalindor and/or the 
draining away of creation.  Scholars debate whether the Hunger Rune was formed 
by Chaos or the Void.  In fact, the more formidable Undead have very similar 
qualities to some outer planar creatures, i.e. they dissolve when disrupted.  
Orcus is associated with the Runes of Chaos and Evil (True Power), and he is 
associated with undead.  There is an underlying method to the madness.  ;-)

        Hope this helps.

        In service,

        Rich