Fate to Stop

Beyond Dominia: The Role Playing Mill: Fate to Stop

By Elrohir (Elrohir) on Thursday, June 21, 2001 - 10:27 am:

"Jaron, come look at this," Sara said. She had been far more curious about this place than he was, and had gone off exploring alone. Her voice echoed from the speakerbox. "I'm in the control room."

He grudgingly exhaled and stood up, reluctant to leave his prefabricated meal which Sanctum had more than happily prepared for him. He was still pondering the strange dreams he had been having since he arrived in Sanctum, but had not had much success deciphering a meaning, if there even was one.

The control room wasn't far, and presently he arrived. Sara was looking up at the main screen, and there appeared to be a planet on it. Rather, he assumed it was his world, since he could recognize general landmarks from the maps he had once read in Oor-Tael's halls.

{What is this?}

"I remembered hearing that this place was Phyrexian in origin, so I decided to investigate. Here," she pressed a button and the view shifted. The world disappeared. "Witness the birth of Phaema." She pressed a different button.

A woman appeared on the screen with golden hair and eyes that pierced the soul. She lifted a hand, and the pain in her face was unmistakable. Slowly, light bent and coalesced, a stream of dust and other gases all rushed to a singular point and then...A world formed.

Jaron recognized at once that it was not his world. It was populated by machines, waiting the day its true master would come.

{This is not...}

"Keep watching."

The woman moved on, far away from the first world, and created others. Then she left the multiverse of Dominia entirely and created one more world. Phaema. Time was marked in eons, not the seconds spent flitting from planet to planet, plane to plane. On the first world, time marched on. Yawgomoth came, and he learned a terrible secret about Phyrexia: As an artificial plane, it must eventually collapse.

This was revealed to Sara and Jaron in much the same way Yawgmoth had learned, and the news terrified them. Phaema was created by the same being who had created Phyrexia, and Jaron now believed it was none other than Tara herself. This news explained why "Phyrexian" technology was in Sanctum.

Tara had given every world a form of technology she was familiar with. In the beginning, it was all the same, but mutated over time with shifting purposes. But its presence here allowed Phyrexians to find Phaema, and so they came, altering it to be much closer to their own.

The two watched history march on Phaema, observing the Atog Wars, the Guild Wars, the Four Hours War, the destruction of Deep Shadow, the Armageddon conflict, and the Black Monolith War. A few years past that, and the picture showed nothing at all. They believed that the end of the world was near.

{Why didn't Thrakkiss find this, I wonder?}


{Never mind. I'm not quite sure what to make of this.}

"It could mean the world is finally ending, and we're here to usher it in."

{Or we've been shown a glimpse of what might be, if we don't act now to reverse it. With Fatestop, Shadow could bring premature demise to the world.}

"But what can we do to stop the end of the world?"

{We'll think of something.}

By Shadow (Shadow) on Thursday, June 21, 2001 - 07:20 pm:

A few minutes passed and Sara shrugged. "I sometimes question the value of axioms, but my...mentor once told me that any man could be defeated, if he could be understood. Perhaps we should look into Shadow's motives?"

She noted Jaron's frown.

"I can feel the power in you Jaron. I know, and I know that you know: you have some significance in this world, Phaema. Yes, everyone has some significance, but some are like matches: with the potential to start a wildfire, change a world."

{Change fate?}

"Stone or none, I gave up my belief in fate. If I still thought my life were laid out before me by some sort of pretentious God, I would have long since gone mad with confusion. If there were such a thing as a Fate, some sort of "master plan" why would it involve so much suffering." She looked Jaron straight in the eye, saying so much with the glance that her next words served as mere augmentation. "Why so much pain?"

Silence for a few more moments.

"You see, that's why we're here discussing this, because I think we can stop the end of the world. That's why I brought up the axiom. At it's root lies an understanding that nothing is unstoppable or infalliable. Every power in existance has some motive. A tree has as much motive as has a man. The stone? 'Fatestop,' I spit at the word. Ridiculous. I'm sure the thing is of tremendous utility, but in the end there's a still a man who has to use it, and men somewhere who had to make it, and name it."

{How can you just dismiss things like that? What of prophecy? Never has a prophecy failed. Is that enough evidence for you? Fate not only exists but is written down, and it binds those of which it speaks. You can claim anything you want. Perhaps men did name the stone Fatestop, perhaps because it can change prophecies.}

"Prophecy! A lucky guesser is not named a prophet, unless the guesser is a mage. We make the prophecies come true by believing them. Humans, at least, have an astounding ability to fool themselves into anything.

"Listen, Jaron, it doesn't matter. Even if there were such a thing as Fate, or if prophecy were truth, we have no prophecies here and no way of knowing any Fate. The one thing we can do is try. Shadow is not some unstoppable force from beyond the multiverse. He is a creature, like any other. He has a motive, and he can be unraveled."

{But we know so little of him. We hardly even know who he is.}

At that, Sara moved her eyes slowly around the room and the notion had been conveyed. She spoke it anyway, "We have in this 'Sanctum' the necessary tools; all that is left..."

By Elrohir (Elrohir) on Friday, June 22, 2001 - 10:36 am:

Feeling at once compressed and stretched to his limits, Jaron fell to the ground convulsing. His muscles were clenched, his limbs pretzeled in ways no human could comprehend. Sightless eyes struggled to lock on to anything, but all was a blur and clarity was lost.

Sara knelt next to him. "Jaron, what is it?" She received no answer but a scathing headache as his mind pierced hers with agonizing efficiency. She shared his pain, of not bodily contortions and wondered at the cause.

In moments, he relaxed, exhausted.

{He can be unraveled, but so can I.}


{Shadow just attempted to destroy one of the other bastions.}

"How can you know that?"

{My father gave me one of them. I didn't realize it at the time, but this attack... I felt the other four and knew each intimately as I've known nothing else.}

"See, you have a power to change the world. I might as well. Sanctum can provide us the information we need."

{But Sara, Sage explained some of this to me, about a prophecy that would return Shadow to the world. He's back now. How can we just cast aside fate as if it didn't exist. We, neither of us, would be here, now, with tools to fight this threat. This is something we were fated to do.}

"There you go making yourself believe. Sanctum, what do you know of Shadow?"


Jaron smiled. {See, how can we learn anything from Sanctum about Shadow? Sensors and "computers" don't know fate. Sanctum knows only what it's been given. It doesn't know prophecy. What information we learn must come from direct observation of Shadow, or through interpretation of prophecy.}

"You're so vexing."

{Perhaps. You're right, though. We need to know his motives, and what makes him tick. Fatestop can undo magic, make it work backwards, "reverse the flow of mana," or so I was told. Doesn't it make sense that to combat him will take either magic more powerful than Fatestop can disrupt, or to use some type of technology that Fatestop won't affect because it isn't magic-based?}

"Neither of us have magic that is immune to Fatestop. We have technology here, but who knows how to use it?"

{Thrakkiss does, and he's out trying something right now that might work. But you overlooked something so immediate to us.}

"The Bastions?"

{Yes. I told you that Shadow just tried to destroy one.}

"He failed."

{But it's magic. Magic that, for now, at least, he can't affect - or so I believe. If we can harness the powers of the five bastions...we might have a chance at stopping Shadow.}

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