Ancients

The Account of Bruum O’Druin and the
Cult of the Ancient Ones.
As dictated by Bruum O’Druin and transcribed by Laress O’Druin.
In the year of 690AC, on the eve of my 269th birthday I received a scroll delivered by mysterious means.
What I read was quite disturbing, this was a request from local mountain villagers for official inquiry into ravenous
attacks by “Mad Dwarves” ! This was strange coming from the Divine Coast all the way to Miir City, into my hands,
how? Curiosity got the best of me and I quickly packed for travel.
I arrived at the small mountain village north of the Rotsca Swamps. The village was still smoldering after the
raid a week ago. There amongst the rubble and debris I found a high priest blessing the bodies of over 200 slain
men, old and young alike. The priest told me a dreadful tale of a raid on the village by lunatic dwarves, they
ransacked the village of valuables, overwhelmed and killed the warriors, mutilating and defiling them all before
gathering the women and children and rushing off into the swamp with them. They then began to cannibalize the
women and children in a pit of fire, before a crude altar, feral and wild.
Only the high priest and five young girls survived the attack. One of the young girls lead me to where she
saw the raiding party enter the swamp. I tracked them for three days unable to catch up, for they moved with
exceptional grace through the swamps, like I through the Brau. Finally I spotted a fire and smoke a few hundred yards
away. As I approached the beating of drums and low chanting became audible.
The ring shaped fire surrounded a monolith twelve feet high and four feet wide at it’s square base. A sort of
ooze appeared to seep out of the unrecognizable material which was of a dark green hue, only there was gray
variegation in the color that seemed to swim around the thing. I felt my will power strain as I began to study it’s
archaic hieroglyphs, which were impossible to see clearly from my vantage point, I slowly began to flank the
makeshift altar blocking my sight.
A hundred paces away I froze in my tracks as the strange hieroglyphs that covered the monolith began to
pulsate with intense light. The cultists suddenly began to claw at themselves and vomit uncontrollably, again I felt my
will power failing me as I watched unable to look away. With great concentration I was able to close my eyes, when I
opened them again I was cautious to not look directly at the monolith. That’s when I saw the vile Idol on the altar.
The hideous Idol was roughly a foot tall with a square pedestal bottom, on top of which stood a creature
unlike any I’d seen or had heard of in any dwarven legend, or even imagined in my own nightmares. It had a bulbous
head with black oval eyes and large octopus like tentacles for it’s mouth. The body was scaly and bloated and had
arms and hands, which had cruel immense claws on them. It’s dragon like wings rested along it’s back and ended at
the base of the pedestal, just beyond it’s feet at their tips.
The cultists had begun chanting again and I felt a low powerful vibration accompanied by a horrible high
pitched squealing. I rushed to grab the Idol and make off, but was heard by the high priest who then alerted the
other cultist to my presence. All of them attacked however, not skilled in combat, what they lacked in training they
made up for in psychotic aggression. It took along time but I was able to successfully defeat the ones who did not
flee into the darkness.
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As I was packing the Idol away for safekeeping, a hiding cultist attempted to back-stab me. I was too quick
for him and was able to disarm and subdue him in a single counter attack. Physically, he was no match for me and he
soon ceased his senseless, futile struggle. He began to murmur to himself as I tied him to an old oak, when I cut off
his finger he looked less like a raving lunatic and more like a wounded child. I asked him “What god commands such
blasphemy and murderous rampages” he only laughed. I was going to end his miserable existence there, I would
have if he wasn’t a dwarf! I ordered him “speak or I cut off your hands, then your feet, and so on, and so on”.
After a while of consistent intimidation, the wounded cultist whispered in a hoarse voice “We worship the
Ancient Ones. They were here when the planets were young, long before even gods walked the earth, who came
from the stars and brought images of themselves with them. Now they lay dead and dreaming in the depths of the
sea, in their archaic stone sarcophagi. And when the stars are right again we will awaken the great sorcerer Xorutus
from his slumber, to once again roam the stars”. His confession was as sincere as it was schizophrenic, and I thought
it best to take this dwarf back to Miir to be imprisoned and later interrogated about the women and children of the
village.
Had I indeed stumbled upon an ancient but somehow unknown cult to mythic beings, for I had never heard
a tale like his before, and haven’t since. In need of guidance on the subject I went into the desert of Synne Caross to
find my old friend Nahg, the Protector. He became quiet and contemplative when I told him of this cult and showed
him the Idol. I will never forget his words of trepidation.
The old wise dragon said “Works of the gods, master dwarf, are incomprehensible to even the righteous.
Yes? The universe is a creation of violent chain reactions either influenced or enhanced by formless entities with
purposes beyond our pitiful mental grasps, these entities are the Ancient Ones the mad cultist spoke of. Perhaps the
secret cult hides secret truths, just like any other power system. But should we sentient beings be made to see or
touch these incomprehensible truths, ones own reality would be smashed by the sheer horror it would germinate in
the minds of the conscious”. Although Nahg had never heard the name Xorutus before, he did know of the cults and
remarked that they were indeed very, very old. He strongly advised me to bind the Idol, and to leave these Ancient
Ones to their incomprehensible purposes.
I could not however stop pondering over the Idol back in Miir City and ordered scribes to research the
strange hieroglyphs and material composition. The Idol caused quite a stir amongst priests and clerics who
recognized it’s vileness straightaway and demanded it be destroyed, while a group of shamans and diplomats saw it
as a window into an unknown ancient culture that very possibly predated the dwarven empire by tens of thousands
of years. They regarded my discovery as historic and noteworthy, which cause me grief as every time I went into the
city I would be harassed either to destroy the Idol, or surrender it for study.
As I had suspected my scribes were unable to identify either the hieroglyphs, or the stone it was comprised
of. For me this was just more conformation of the validity of the Ancient Ones. To further verify my suspicions, the
Alliance inquiry performed on the imprisoned cultist yielded no ripe fruit. He soon went mad in prison and was
neutralized by the Alliance. With no further leads to follow I began to become so distracted by life and duty that
eventually a year had gone by since I had even seen the hideous Idol.
In the spring of that year I was traveling back to Berm City to visit some relatives, ship builders by trade and
real genuine people. Over the years I have developed a love of the ocean and sailing ships, and fancy a cruise on the
Corliss in the brisk spring air. A few years earlier I had commissioned a fifty foot sailboat and named her “The
Warning”. On her maiden voyage we were two days out when an intense storm rocked the boat sending us off
course, and into the middle of the Corliss Bay. We ran aground which did extensive hull damage and we began taking
on water.
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The captain came rushing into my quarters to alert me the crew claims we have run shore on some kind of
monument. When we emerged onto the observation deck the crew had already begun bringing light sources ashore
and were flashing bulls-eye lanterns at at giant monolith identical to the one in the swamp! Exact same coloration,
and engraved hieroglyphics, except this one was at least two hundred feet high.
I joined the landing party and headed out on the treacherous rocky terrain. The closer I got the more I was
impressed by its towering size. Some of the men had begun to search the perimeter of the monolith, one dwarf
came running from behind the monolith his face pale and visibly shaking. Another man approached him and asked
what he found, but he could not answer he only stared at us frightened.
A few dwarves and myself went around the back of the monolith to find a large foul smelling pit, emitting
low vibrations that were steadily getting louder, one dwarf pointed into the pit and said “there, can you see, the eyes
are glowing green”! At that very moment at huge black tentacle launched up and out of the pit, slamming down and
crushing five men. Three other crew men paralyzed by fear, fall face first into the pit. The rest of us began to move
back to the boat as another giant tentacle sprung out and grabbed the base of the monolith for leverage.
Moments later we were back at the boat and were dropping life boats from the side when suddenly I felt
compelled to turn and look behind me, I wish I never had, for the vision will haunt me to my grave. A lumbering
fleshy mass of tentacles, multiple teeth filled mouths and random eyes all over its triangular bloated form, appearing
to be assorted body parts. Could this be an Ancient One?
As it slid down closer to the boats, one of it’s massive tentacles lashed out and demolished two life boats.
Me and the captain were only a few hundred feet out in front of it, while it concentrated on the rest of the crew first
and then began to pursue us. Huge waves began to swell around the small boat, as the monstrosity gained on us.
Before it could smash me in two, with the boat, I jumped in the bay, and swam as fast as I could. I must have swam
for hours before landing on another unforgiving rock island, as soon as I got on shore I passed out.
Upon conclusion, no trace of the Warning, it’s crew or their bodies was ever found. I have no interest to
further pursue the incomprehensible, fearing that I or another could lose their sanity, or perhaps end up as the mad
cultists did. The Idol is bound and secured with the Oakenshield diplomats in Burges City, where it remains under
manned security under my strict orders.
…”And should we sentient beings be made to see or touch these incomprehensible truths,
one’s own reality would be smashed by the sheer horror it would germinate in the minds of men”.
C Bowman 2010
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Ancients

Dwarves of Bruinia Byerac Vikshade