Axtrami Haiq Ouzala
The words which lie herein are a documentary of the Ouzala - the Weapon of the Ouzquin Dremorix - And the enchantments of Axtrami.
For your approval, Lord Scarlin.
Here is the information you requested on the origin of the weapon of choice of the Ouzquin Dremorix.
As requested, further information based on the rumoured Ouzala with enchantments of Axtrami has been added.
The information gathered has been taken from various sources, including folklore and histories of the Ouzquin Dremorix themselves.
I trust this list is comprehensive enough for my lord's eyes.
*Crack!* Naraku reeled in pain as the fighting rod struck his skull. Locked in mortal combat with a skirmisher of the Sect of the Shattered Orb, he had failed to so much as land a single blow on his foe with the Dremorix battle-staves, and now, forced to his knees, he was defeated. But why!? Did he not train devoutly every day with the weapon!? He was more dedicated to practice of the staff than any other Ouzquin Dremorix, and yet the style of fighting he had was flawed! Why was he worse at using this weapon than the others?
Satisfied that Naraku had been taken out of the fight, the attacker moved on to other targets in this small raid - and it was true, that one blow had jarred Naraku's senses far more than it should have. The warrior was shaking violently, and he emptied his stomach unceremoniously onto the sand. All the warmth seemed to have left the man, and his skin was pale as death. Darkness washed over him, and he slumped to the ground.
'Naraku.' The sound of thunder echoed its voice in his mind, and in the pitch darkness before him, two orbs flickered into being. The two beads flickered uncertainly for a moment, then light flowed through them and every colour imaginable shone forth - Naraku could see that the spheres were of a glass so pure, he wept simply by looking onto them. 'I see you, Naraku.' And with those words a form congealed around those orbs - materializing out from the darkness. The two balls of light served as eyes beneath a dark hood, which hid the features of the being before him. The cloaked body before him could have been either male or female. Naraku realized it did not matter. 'Axtrami...?' Was all Naraku could ask, and as if in response lightning cracked, but beneath the hood of the form before him. As that light shone beneath the hood, Naraku saw both a humanlike face, and saw also roiling clouds of a violent storm contained only by the material of the garments, the orbs of light levitating amidst the turmoil. 'That is what you call me, yes.' The voice of Axtrami was not a voice at all, but rather the rumbling of thunder in the emptiness of the void they were in - Naraku found that he could understand the voice of this thunder. 'Your devotion has empowered you, Naraku. I see your plight.' With these words, images flashed everywhere in the void around them - lasting scant seconds, but covering an entire lifetime: They showed Naraku training alone in the deserts for hours upon end with the battle-staff in his hands until he could no longer stand on his own accord, at which point he would take the time to meditate on how he could improve his practice the next day. The visions also dictated Naraku's constant failure when putting his practice into use on real foes. He saw his many wounds, pains and near-deaths summed up in an instant.
'You were not meant to hold this weapon, Naraku.' In the hand of the figure a staff of pure glass came to being for a few seconds before melting away to the floor and disappearing. 'Gather the broken shards of your fallen comrades. Come to my temple in Karikun. Bring your stave.' A bolt of light as bright as the legends say the original Staff of Axtrami was blasted down from the dark above them, and Naraku was obliterated into nothingness.
Pain was the first thing that registered to Naraku - a headache that all the alcohol in the desert could not simulate, and an aching in his muscles like none he had felt before. The next thing he noticed was the fact that he was lying in a pool of his own vomit. With difficulty, Naraku pushed himself to his feet and peered at the aftermath of battle. It was nighttime now - that meant it was at least seven hours since the Sect of the Shattered Orb began their raid on Naraku's home-town. The ground was littered with the corpses of his village, and the bovine pen had been ransacked and all the beasts stolen. Naraku allowed himself several minutes to grieve for his loss, before he picked through the corpses, taking glass beads and shards before he turned and began walking north. Ever north to Karikun.
The shining city of Bareka, built on a large station of bedrock in the middle of the Karikun desert. This is where Naraku journeyed to. Half the city was carved into rocky hills and outcrops, the other half were buildings of stone-and-glass who's roofs rose into pointed spires towards the heavens. The largest spired building - made nearly entirely of glass - stood in the western area of the city. This was Karikun's Temple of Axtrami - A devout place, where clerics bask in the glory that is the Lord of Reflections, light and storms. There were only two clerics currently in the temple when Naraku stepped in, but as soon as his foot touched the sacred floor of the temple both froze in place, as though caught in time. The sounds of the busy city outside faded, before disappearing altogether, and the light of the sun dimmed, steadily fading from day, to dusk, to night and finally to absolute nothingness. Eternity held its breath for a second, before slowly, the altar in the middle of the temple shone, and a bridge of pure light appeared, connecting Naraku's feet and the altar and beckoning him to travel forth to it. As Naraku took his first step forward, two beads of glass shone into his view just behind the altar, and the form of Axtrami appeared once more, one gloved hand rested on the glass slab before him. No words were uttered. Naraku halted before the altar - the slab of glass the only thing between him and his god - and he lay his battle-staff on the altar before him, along with the collected glass pieces.
'Blood is sacrifice. Sacrifice is dedication. Show your dedication, and show me your blood.' The voice of thunder called to Naraku, and around them images flashed of blood - Naraku's blood - pouring atop the altar. The Ouzquin Dremorix barely even paused before plucking a jagged shard from the altar and running it deeply across his left wrist. No sound was given by the man as he held his wrist out over the altar, his artery pumping a steady stream of blood onto the items atop it. Naraku never faltered his gaze off the twin orbs of reflective lights beneath that hood until he fell to his knees, then blacked out. Just before absolution claimed him, the Dremorix saw lightning crash beneath the hood, and he swore he saw a genderless face smile.
Naraku woke to the copper smell of blood. He lay on the floor, next to the altar of Axtrami - it was daytime again, apparently, as the brightness of light burned his eyes. Slowly, he stood, and felt dried blood congealed onto the left side of his face - the face that had touched the ground. Finally, he took in his surroundings. He was now in the middle of the temple, the altar was completely covered in what could only have been his own blood - the blood also rivered down the side and covered a good metre of the floor... So much blood! The Dremorix peered at his left wrist - There was signs of a huge gash in it, however it had been pulled closed and stitched together with what appeared to be an impossibly fine strand of a flexible glass thread. The two clerics of Axtrami were staring in absolute horror at Naraku - one second they were going about their daily rituals, in the next millisecond this man appeared on the floor and blood saturated their sacred altar.
Finally, Naraku noticed a soft glint of light atop the altar. He reached to it and plucked up what he thought at first to be his Battle-staff. It didn't take long for him to realize that this was not his weapon, however.
Where once the staff stood straight and long, now it had a gentle curve to its length. On the convex side of the wooden staff, a gulley an inch deep ran and clipped inside that gulley were wicked barbs of glass, two to three inches long and pointed dangerously. The gulley paused in two spots to allow hand-holds, and on the tip of the staff a final, wickedly curved and pointed icicle of glass stood proud.
Naraku felt as one with this weapon, and as he held it the dried blood moistened and dripped away onto the floor. Archaic symbols of ancient power were lined in intricate filagree of reflective glass against the treated wooden shaft, and the weapon felt light; weightless. Naraku had found what he was meant to wield.
The Ouzala was born.
The exerpt above is the Ouzquin Dremorix's account of the history of the first Ouzala. This information was gathered from various members of the Glass Shifter's society, and interestingly, the stories given remain strikingly similar even down to small details - from one Dremorix to another. Even different settlements have the same tale of the Ouzala. They also suggest that this occured some three-thousand, five hundred years ago. I find this highly suspect, as few races on this planet have a recorded history so far back. Besides, if the Society of the Ouzquin Dremorix were so ancient, why have they never expanded from the deserts? I believe the glass shifters to be little more than a century or perhaps two, old. However, you pay me for the information I gather, not for my opinions!
Interviews with various Ouzquin Dremorix have revealed that all current designs of the Ouzala derive from this 'Legend' of Naraku. Nearly all Ouzala are handcrafted by the owners from scratch: They must find, carve and treat the wooden shaft, and add the grooves and notches in it so it is capable of holding the glass spikes. They also must craft and insert those shards. The end result is that no two Ouzala are exactly the same. Each of these weapons bears the hallmarks of their creator.
With the passage of time, variations of this weapon have come into place; I have seen several one-handed versions of the Ouzala. I have also heard of a variety of a 'Brass Knuckle' type Ouzala, with short spikes around the knuckles, and two larger ones atop and below the fist. By far the most popular, however, is the traditional 'Spear Ouzala'.
It seems that every Ouzquin Dremorix - male and female - has made an Ouzala at least once in their lives, even if they have never used it, and never intended to use it. When I asked further of this I received only blank stares, as though I had answered the question with my own words. I suppose it must have something to do with their religion, but that is merely speculation. Perhaps it has simply been integrated into their lives over time.
The Touch of Axtrami
There are fabled Ouzala known as 'Axtrami Haiq Ouzala' Which roughly translates to 'The Glass Spear touched by Axtrami', or 'The Glass Spear held by Axtrami'. These are rumored weapons which are supposed to have been blessed and personally enchanted by the god of storms himself. It is said that Axtrami is swayed by instances of pure devotion to a task, and that if the person who performed the deed has an Ouzala which they have crafted themselves, Axtrami will reveal himself to them, offering them a great boon... but at a high price. The subject of the devotion matters little to Axtrami, as he is a very nuetral deity - it could be performing a great heist, or saving an entire city against desctruction. It is said that Axtrami even presented himself to a farmer who was so devoted to his task of tending his cattle that the god wished to grant him the ability to aid him - the farmer, bieng old and decrepit was not up to the task required for this aid, however, and chose to remain with his charge.
When you have been chosen for your devotion, it is said the feel of the eye of Axtrami upon you curses you with a terrible illness - a sickness so intense that you are effectively barely able to so much as walk. When the one stricken with illness next falls asleep, Axtrami speaks to them, playing on their devotion, and offering them a chance to earn something wondrous. Axtrami asks for the Ouzala they own, plus one item that is difficult to obtain or part with. He also demands blood as final sacrifice. This item always relates to the the gifted's devotion.
If the chosen person manages to obtain the lost item and manages to return to a Temple of Axtrami - of which nowdays there is one in most major deserts - then Axtrami enchants the presented Ouzala. The weapon changes physically, Becoming an ornate masterpiece etched with Holy and eldritch symbols, but it also is granted an immensely powerful enchantment. This enchantment is a power imbued by Axtrami himself, and always gives a means in which the chosen person can further his or her skills. It is rare that Axtrami enchants an Ouzala for the purpose of aiding in battle, and most Axtrami Haiq Ouzala - though extremely well made - do not give any additional benefits to what they were made for apart from superior craftsmanship.
Children of Glass excerpt
By Lord Dermond Jaged
I believe the reason Axtrami requires someone to have an Ouzala is in tribute to the first person he contacted - Naraku. Lord Scarlin, it is said that once someone rightfully owns an Axtrami Haiq Ouzala, they are connected to it. It's powers work even if they are only in the general vicinity of the Ouzala. The book also suggests that if these fabled Ouzala's are stolen or taken by decietful means, their powers would not work for the thief. Perhaps it would be wise to study further before beginning your expedition.
The final section of my research are summaries of the only known Axtrami-touched Ouzala. These are the only Ouzala known of who's owners took on the quest from Axtrami and succeeded. These have been summarised mainly through folklore and what little information I could glean from this society's historical manuscripts.
The Ouzquin Dremorix name is first, followed by the common tongue translation. After that is a record of the dream each person had. Finally, the appearance and powers of the particular Ouzala are noted, as well as their current whereabouts.
Axtrami Haiq Ouzala
A gentle, barely audible hum - like someone running a finger around the edge of a crystal glass - reverberated in the background of the darkness. Narine stood silently in the middle of nothingness, waiting for something - although exactly what, eluded her. 'Have you seen a god weep, Narine?' A voice sounded softly, in harmony with that soothing hum. A single tear-shaped drop fell in slow motion from the heavens - it's shining glint the only sign of light in this darkness. It was not liquid, however - and as it hit the ground, it shattered in a way that only glass can, the sound of its destruction somehow complementing the hum. 'I wept at your performance.' Two more drops fell from above, followed by another - a gentle drizzle of glass rain began, each drop creating it's individual, resonating sound until the darkness was filled with an orchestra of breaking glass, the sound so crisp and clean that all the worlds sounds now seemed empty to Narine. Shattered glass littered the ground, slowly rising. 'I have heard your efforts, Narine.' The sound of Narine's lute echoed with the noise of the glass storm - ten thousand hours of practice summed up by the puppeteer of this dream in a single, impossibly beautiful chord. The glass teardrops fell heavier, and Narine found she was chest-high in shattered glass. 'What of them?' Narine spoke softly, it finally dawning on her who had invaded her dreams. Axtrami did not answer directly; 'Find the harp-string of Elusimao the harper. Take up your Ouzala. Bring them to my temple in Horina.' The shattered remnants of the glass rain engulfed Narine's head, and she heard nothing more.
Appearance: Ilariel is a 6 foot long Spear Ouzala, which has a sharp curve to it, far steeper than a normal Ouzala - it's almost as deeply turned as a longbow. Coiled in a spiral along the shaft and inbetween the barbs of the Ouzala is a single, long golden harp-string. The wood is has a golden and black swirling pattern over it, and the teeth are all one inch long and pure crystal. When swung, this Ouzala makes a pleasant, resonant hum in the air.
Power: When worn or within 5 meters of the owner, this Ouzala grants that owner the ability and knowledge to play any instrument like a master, no matter how foreign it is to him or her. In addition, it grants the user innate knowledge of the technical workings of music - what chords fit well with others, how harmonies should be constructed and so on.
Current whereabouts: held by Dariaki, an Ouzquin Dremorix who has taken to travelling the 'outsider' cities, playing masterpieces on various instruments and making a large sum of money.
The stone-walled room was bare, apart from the four torches hung on each wall lighting up the place, and a hooded man standing in the middle of it, a book open in his hands. 'History of the Ouzquin Dremorix?' the man uttered questioningly to Hainis. Hainis gasped audibly - the man had a hard-back book of the draft-text he had spent the last 4 years of his life writing; NOBODY could have that - he had only just finished writing the book on parchment-scrolls five minutes earlier! For that matter, where was he...? The thought of location was whisked away, and he couldn't quite grasp it, but no matter, he had to get his book back! Hainis lunged towards the robed man to snatch the book and push him back. The moment his hand touched the body of the robed man, however, there was a flash of light, then everything disappeared and blackness reigned.
Then, the four torches burst alight once more revealing the same room. There were no exits to the room, and now the robed man was gone. In his place was a plain desk, a single, small book placed atop it. Hiri was confused, but his mind was just so muddled in this place he... he couldn't put rational thoughts together. Instead, he walked to the table and glanced at the page the book was opened to. Curious - there was only one word on it! Hainis tried desperately to make out the word, but it became harder and harder the more he concentrated on it. Finally, like a dam bursting within his head, the meaning of the word became clear; In that single, unfathomable word was the sum of his entire life wrapped up in several indistinguishable letters. He read of his own study for years to become a linguist and a writer. He read also, how four years ago, he locked himself away without any distractions in a doorless room to work on a masterpiece of literature detailing the entire known history of his people. The only breaks from his writing was to eat the food passed through a chute to him, or to sleep.
'You have worked hard, Hainis.' What... the table was gone, and the robed man was back. Hainis knew he could feel a knowing smile behind the darkness of that hood, and the man stepped forward, handing the impossible hard-cover book over to Hainis. 'There is reward in hard work, if you are willing to go further than you have.' Hainis remained silent; somehow this scenario was familiar to him, but he could not quite remember where. 'Find the lost Book of the Storm. Take up your Ouzala. Come to my temple in Hamiko.'
Realization dawned on Hainis; he had read once of several dreams and holy quests given to heroes by a hooded man. And that man was... 'By the light of the sun! Axtra...!' The unseen smile beneath that hood widened, and before Hainis could finish his sentence, the torches blew out, and darkness reigned.
Appearance: Luid is fairly small for an Ouzala, reaching only 5 feet in length. Its shaft is perfectly straight and a pure black. The barbs running along it's edge are miniscule - only half-an-inch long, and they are a golden colour. The glass spearhead is curled in on itself to form a groove - the problem with this in combat, is that when stabbed, it tends to collect and hold the blood of its victim.
Power: Luid grants the owner the ability to understand all written language if read, and spoken language if heard. Additionally, anything read by the owner after obtaining Luid will remain locked in their memory photographically, ready to be called on at any time. The owner also seems to be able to write without the need of any sort of ink.
Current whereabouts: Luid is kept in the high temple of Axtrami in Bareka, where the priests hold and protect those Axtrami-touched Ouzala found until someone enters who they deem worthy of using their powers.
'NOOO!' This had to be a nightmare: Gaxatir was tied to the glass altar in the high temple of Axtrami, and four clerics were stationed around him, one holding a terribly wicked-looking Zunouza of obsidian. All four were uttering soft chants to Axtrami, offering a sacrifice to the great lord of storms.
Suddenly, Gaxatir felt calm, and he closed his eyes faintly, 'Axtrami shall protect me.' He uttered with a calm certainty, and he relaxed - no longer struggling against his bonds. There was a silence, and when the Ouzquin Dremorix opened his eyes once more, the clerics were gone, and in place of the Zunouza-wielding one was a plain-robed figure. He held the dagger disarmingly to his side, and beneath the hood, Gaxatir was certain he saw the roiling of storm-clouds, mixed with a genderless face. 'Your faith keeps you strong, Gaxatir. But much as I do appreciate your fervor, I will tell you this and you shall know it as true: Faith alone will not protect you. You cannot always ask for the aid of your god when the darkness swallows you, for although most of them hate to admit it, gods are as fallible as the mortals who bow before them.' Gaxatir said nothing, though he felt those words to be true. 'Your dedication to the worship you do, though, Gaxatir. This is what pleases me.' Gaxatir felt an urge to turn to his left and as he did, he saw himself kneeling next to the altar he was strapped to. He saw how he came by every day to sit before this altar for at least five hours; seeking solace in his lord. 'To recieve my blessing you must be willing to forsake me. Leave the deserts. Learn of five other religions and collect symbols of their faith. Take up your Ouzala. Return to this altar. Go.' Suddenly, the robed figure took up the dagger and plunged it into Gaxatir's chest - His cry of agony was cut off, and only darkness reigned.
Appearance: Hembali is a 6-foot long Ouzala, wrapped in golden and silver silks which are tied in place by crimson, velvet cords. All of the spikes of Hembali are actually blunt and rounded, and are completely ineffective as weapons, apart from the spear-head, which is a triple-pronged, twisting spire.
Power: Hembali grants the holder the ability to heal any wound, illness or curse short of death in seconds, with no ill-effect to either to healer or the healed. However, this can only be done inside a holy place - it does not matter if the place isn't devoted to Axtrami, just so long as it is a place of worship. Anything from a church to a druid circle to a pagan ritual will suffice. Additionally, whenever Hembali is taken outside in a storm, it's glass shards seem to fill with a misty, swirling substance. This substance remains until activated - When this happens the holder is able to call upon it's power to send forth a horribly dangerous 'glass storm' in a cone out from the spear end of this Ouzala. This storm is apparantly in homage to Axtramiya Zuno - an ancient spired tower and the glass city around it - all of which were destroyed when outsiders sought to attack the Ouzquin Dremorix. This glass tempest can tear through flesh and metal with equal ease. The staff cannot be used and 'refilled' by the same storm.
Though not a granted power from Axtrami, anyone carrying this weapon is presumed to be high in the ranks of the holy order of Axtrami or one of the Acolytes of the Morning Dew.
Current Whereabouts: Hembali is currently held and in use by the high priest of Axtrami, within the high temple of Axtrami in Bareka.
Axer Adrami (acks-er Add-rah-me)
It was dark in this alley, and Nimbi was stalking someone. The robes of the man before her made a trail in the sand, and the woman knew this would be a simple mark - however, she did not get overconfident. Instead, she diligently followed ... wait - why was she following this man again? Her memory seemed a bit hazy. Hm, no matter, there was a reason! Anyway, she diligently followed with the practiced stealth of a trained killer. The man turned a corner between two stone buildings and Nimbi followed. What? Where did the man go? There was a dead end four metres along this narrow hall, and no way out yet the robed figure had disappeared. Sighing, she turned to walk out and found herself trapped - that man had somehow gotten behind her and was standing at the exit of the alleyway! 'You hide against the physical sensation of sight and sound, Nimbi. There are those in this universe who have more than these at their disposal.' Nimbi growled - she was the greatest assassin in the city, and she did not need this patronising man telling her how to do things! She reached for her Ouzala and swung, the weapon hitting flesh with a tearing sound, and blood spraying everywhere. The corpse of the man fell to the ground silently, but as soon as the body hit the floor, the man's voice rung once again. 'You truly are great at what you do, Nimbi,' From the stone wall beside her, a figure emerged, stone turning to flesh and material as the figure of the man appeared once more. 'And your diligence will reap you great rewards, should you risk it all. Steal your way inside the high warriors quarters of Bareka. obtain his neckpiece. Bring it and your Ouzala to my temple, also in Bareka.' Nimbi blinked as he felt this dream begin to unravel around her, and she shouted 'Wait! Who are you!?' But there was no reply, and soon, there was only darkness.
Appearance: Axer Adrami is a rather long Ouzala of 9 feet, with two glass prongs as the spearhead curved and touching each other at the tip so they make a smooth circle. The wood of this Ouzala seems to have designs of scorpions and snakes burned into it, the images seeming to writhe as the weapon moves.
Powers: Axer Adrami bestows upon it's wearer the gift of stealth. A common misconception is that this weapon gives the owner invisibity, as this is untrue - In actual fact, the weapon simply makes the bearer seem insignificant. Any conversations had with this person will be forgotten in minutes, and if anyone was not looking directly FOR the bearer, they would not notice if the owner walked right in front of their eyes in an empty street on a bright day. The weapon must be slung on the wearers back, but still on his or her person for this weapon to have effect - if the weapon is drawn, or the item taken away from them, all blending effects will be negated.
Current Whereabouts: Unknown.
A white hall of mirrors. How interesting! Inistiz walked through this strange place with wonder. The roof, floors and walls were all twisted glass panes and the room itself was a maze. He did not know how he got here, exactly, but he was intrigued. Finally, Inistiz stepped in front of the last mirror of the maze-room. Reflected in that mirror was not himself, but a figure in robes of grey, peering back with glass for eyes. Inistiz was shocked, but quickly covered, moving close and reaching a hand out to touch the mirror. The image performed the exact same actions as he.
Eventually, after watching the strange, genderless form, Inistiz turned to look at the other mirrors in the room once more. To his shock, he found that all the mirrors now showed reflections of that robed figure! Strangely, the reflections showed this figure walking towards him, but the figure was not there in reality!
Inistiz was enthralled, and he stepped forward, moving to stand in the place where the reflections suggested the form was. As soon as he touched that place - and walked straight through it - All the images on the mirror stopped moving in unison, and instead began to drop out of the mirrors. The reflections from the floor climbed up and out, the wall forms simply stepped through solid glass and into reality, and the ones from the roof dropped down with silent ease.
Inistiz was now more than slightly worried; there was something wrong with this scene but... well, his mind just couldn't imagine what! Still, the man shrugged and walked back to that final mirror. This time the image did not move with him, and instead spoke. 'Inistiz.' All of the now-living reflections spoke to, copying the originals actions, a cacophony of voices tore through the hall of mirrors. 'Your eyes have never before failed you. However, you find nothing wrong with this room.' Inistiz felt he should be speaking a reply right now, but instead he found himself just staring at the image in curiousity. 'You have lived an interesting life, Inistiz.' The room darkened slightly, and the mirrors gleamed once in unison, before suddenly each showing a different scene in his life - all were themed with Inistiz's history: Each image showed Inistiz spotting something from afar; Inistiz straining his vision in an attempt to make himself see better. Inistiz staring for hours upon end at the shifting sand dunes and sand storms from afar, trying to make out every small detail he could. Finally, Inistiz did reply, 'So I like my vision, yes.' The original image of the robed man stepped forth and out of the mirror, and as he did, all the copies exploded into nothing with a peal of thunder. 'Yes. Your constant attempts at bettering your sight are what brought you to me. And as such, I will share a gift with you... at a high price.'
'Wait... I've heard of this before! This is a dream, right? And you must be Axtrami!'
The figure before him did not answer his question, 'Focus, Inistiz. Come to the Kreyja desert. Bring your Ouzala to my temple there. If you wish, I shall give you the means to see better than you ever have before. But the risk it costs you, are your eyes.' Suddenly, the mirrors all shattered in unison, breaking apart into shards which fell upon Inistiz, lacerating him. There was nothing but darkness.
Appearance: Loen has two rows of barbs running down a parallel line along a straight, plain wooden base. It has no spear-end to it, and is more like a toothed staff than an Ouzala.
Powers: Loen bestows a powerful gift on the bearer. Any blind who holds this staff, or has this staff against any part of his or her skin will be able to see. As long as the owner is in contact with this weapon, his or her eyes physically change their makeup - becoming highly sensitive, they are able to pick up and magnify any detection of light in an area - so long as a place has any sort of light no matter how small, that place will become as daytime. Additionally, these eyes are able to see the truth behind all things - any physical signs of deception will be picked up by the user, and all illusions and fakery - magical or otherwise - will be seen for what they are.
At nighttime, the bearers eyes will seem reflective - similar to a cats.
Current Whereabouts: Loen is kept in the high temple of Axtrami in Bareka, where the priests hold and protect those Axtrami-touched Ouzala found until someone enters who they deem worthy of using their powers.
The setting sun reflected its rays off a thousand broken glass shards into Jazranika's eyes, and the elderly woman squinted. Where was she...? 'Axtramiya Zuno' A voice sounded behind her, and Jazranika turned to the sight of the broken ruins of an enormous glass tower, which - if it were not destroyed - would surely have reached high into the heavens in tribute. Clouds began to form in the sky, appearing from nowhere and everywhere, and blotting out the sun. A cold rain started. She felt death and despair. A chill wind made her shiver softly. 'A decade ago, this place shone it's glory across the entire desert in homage to me. Now... nothing. Remains which over time shall become buried in the sands.' There was no source to that voice - it seemed to come from all around the woman. 'Jazranika. I see you. I see your life.'
The sands turned in a violent wind and the scene was swept away to another scene of desolation; A woman - Jazranika realized it was herself - was kneeling next to a corpse, diligently uttering a farewell. She placed a mirrored circlet over it's eyes, and plucked the Ouzquin Hemisa from the second circlet on it's forehead, placing it within its mouth. Next, the woman lifted the corpse up and eased it gently into a hole dug by her own hands.. The scene began to get more focused to Jazranika, and she now noticed herself standing and walking to another corpse just metres away, performing the same ritual. The winds shifted, and the sands blew the scene away again, back to Axtramiya Zuno.
'Years spent, following the armies of the Ouzquin Dremorix simply to make sure the fallen are given the final embrace. Of all I have spoken to - from Naraku to Nimbi - I can say I hold the highest regard for you.' An image flashed within Jazranaki's mind of an impossible scenario - of the essence of a storm bowing in respect to the woman.'Your entire life you have dealt with death. Now all I ask is your own life for my gift to be given to you. Take up your Ouzala. Travel to my temple in Bareka. Place your Ouzquin Hemisa upon my altar... and crush it.' A single, involuntary tear leaked from Jazranaki's left eye at what the voice of Axtrami was asking, and the sands shifted once more, enveloping the woman in it's own embrace - welcoming her to her death. Darkness reigned.
Appearance: Xactaki is black like the feathers of the Karikun vulture. The Spearhead is of obsidian, and has two points which spiral and bend, leaving a spherical space in the midst of them. Caged inside those two twisting spires and floating in midair by an unknown magic is an Ouzquin Hemisa - a life orb of the Ouzquin Dremorix. To the Ouzquin Dremorix society, this is as sinister as having a skull on the end of a staff.
There is only a single obsidian barb in Xactaki; almost reaching 3 feet long, it is just below the spearhead, flattened out and razor sharp.
All in all, the weapon looks like a particularly exotic scythe.
Powers: Those who hold Xactaki know when and how death occured around them. They will feel the corpses of any and everyone who died in a 10 yard radius from where they stand, no matter how long ago the death occured. This is both a gift and a curse, as the feel of all those deaths tends to cause depression.
Additionally, Xactaki allows the bearer to speak with any dead in the area, as long as there is a corpse with vocals still intact in the area, or a spirit/ghost. Speaking with the dead will leave the bearer drained and weak for the remainder of the day.
If any living creature (Be it a rat or a mighty dragon) is struck with this weapon, there is a small chance that they would contract a horrible necrosis of the flesh - their bodies would begin to die, starting from the area of the wound and working outwards. This can be healed by even the simplest healing spell, but first aid will not stop it, save for cutting out the already dead flesh and around into the living flesh, and actually making the wound bigger than it originally was.
Current Whereabouts: It is rumored that Xactaki lies somewhere within the now cursed ruins of Axtramiya Zuno, buried somewhere beneath the ruins.
Yunixtri was tired... so tired! She had been walking for an eternity! Long enough, even to realize that she was actually dreaming. But the sands simply did not end! It was the same dune after dune each hour. Why was she walking? She didn't know. All she knew is the fact that she must put one foot in front of the other, again and again. Over and over. She had seen the sun rise and fall several times, now, and all she wished was that she wake up! Suddenly, Yunixtri realized she was not alone. Next to her was a figure made entirely of sand - an exact copy of Yunixtri, walking the same pace and watching the real version with curiousity. 'Why do you walk, Yunixtri?' the sand asked. 'Because it is what I do.'
Yunixtri paused for a moment. Why DID she walk? Why has she not stopped walking anytime during this dream? She was silent for a while, until she came up with an answer, 'Because why else are the sands here but to be walked upon? Why are there roads if we need not travel? Why is there land if we need not traverse it? I walk because we were made to walk.' The sand image of herself placed a grainy hand upon Yunixtri's wrist, and they both paused in their journey and watched each other. 'If what you want is to walk, then allow me to give you a gift, that I might walk with you. Take a bottle. Fill it with with sands from each of the deserts on this planet. Bring your Ouzala, and come to my temple in Kreyja.' The figure reached out to embrace the tired woman gently, and Yunixtri found herself falling into a restful sleep. Darkness reigned.
Appearance: Tarax is actually small enough to be held in one hand - only 4 feet long and light-weighted. The wooden shaft is covered by thousands of miniscule lizard scales, and the teeth are approximately two inches long and clear crystal.
Powers: If it weren't for the requirement of sustenance and sleep, Tarax would allow the holder to walk at a steady pace until the world stopped turning. No basic task such as walking, swimming or climbing will ever tire that which holds this weapon. Additionally, the holder may perform any of those three movement tasks at a much greater speed for short bursts - if he so wished, he could match speed with a running horse for several minutes, or outswim a shark for some time.
Though there is no limit to how much faster someone can go using Tarax, the faster they DO go, the quicker they will tire. One could match the speed of a cheetah, although only for ten seconds, hence the name 'Dash'.
Current Whereabouts: Tarax is currently held with two other Ouzala in the high temple of Axtrami in Bareka. It waits there for one devoted to the task of travel to come and prove to the priests that they deserve the weapon.
*Tink* *Tink* *Clunk* enormous metal wheels with blunt teeth whirled around above Karyla, pushing each other and moving floors to roofs and opening doors without human touch. The 6-year old child stood on a cliff in the center of an enormous subterrainean cavern of metal and machinery. There was a bewildered look on her face, but an acceptance, as well - there must be a reason she was here.
'So young, to be so determined.' There was no voice to the words, but rather a feeling. A figure arose from the ground itself, cement turning into flesh and material as a robed, hooded form took place next to Karyla. 'Where am I!?' The child demanded almost stubbornly, before blocking her ears at the whizzing sound as a strange, floating ship arose from the cliff before her, lifted by gas and a strange belt mechanism driving whirring metal blades around - as this ship neared the roof of the cavern, a large 'clanging' sound was made, and two enormous cogs far above began to turn. Karyla stared in wonder as the roof of the cave itself began to open slowly.
'In the midst of a dead civilisation. Seeing as you are so young, I have a lesson to teach you.' There was another large CLANG from above, followed by a sickly metal-on-metal grinding sound. The leftmost large cog on the roof stopped moving, and signs of smoke began to escape from up there. 'All that you see here is artificial. That which is made by mortals - no matter how advanced - will eventually erode.' The left cog creaked dangerously for several seconds, before snapping off it's hinges and falling down, striking the air-ship on the side and clipping off several of the important props. The air-ship began spinning and turning out of control, heading for the ground. Karyla gasped. 'This is the folly of mortals. Your task is a trial of devotion over time. If you succeed, your reward will not go to you, but to another. Are you devoted to a task which will take half your life, with no promise of reward?' The question seemed rhetorical, and Karyla was too busy watching the airship crash into the ground over the cliff with an enormous explosion. Soon, a chain reaction occurred. Cogs and metal pipes began clanging and crashing - metal falling down from the rooftops. 'Bring your Ouzala to me. Bring me twenty-four barbs, made by my touch in your world - not that of mortal making. Bring these to my temple in Karikun.'
Karyla looked up to see an enormous brass cog falling down from the roof directly above her. It landed. Darkness reigned.
Appearance: This is the most well-known enchanted Ouzala of the 'outside world' - if non Ouzquin Dremorixes know of any magical Ouzala, it is usually this one. While the majority of ouzalas made utilize artificially made glass, this weapon is fitted only with teeth made from lightning forged glass teeth. Each of the glass teeth has a unique color to it, a greenish gold color that comes from the presence of copper rich minerals that were present in the sand when the lightning struck.
The base of the weapon is adorned with inlays of glass beads etched with holy symbols of Axtrami, then wrapped in specially cured leather taken from the hide of a local desert lizard. The end of the ouzala has three golden eagle feathers tied to the end, though they have since been stained with blood spilt by the weapon.
Power: Apart from Xactaki's necrosis, Vaxatra is the only confirmed weapon enchanted by Axtrami that is designed to give abilities to use in battle. The glass teeth of this weapon are unbreakable by any conventional means. The weapon will tear through leather like it would cloth, and metal like it would leather. When used against creatures or people of darkness, deception or in any way associated with mirrors, glass, or the breaking of either, the force of the blows of this weapon is doubled. Every time the sun reaches its peak on a day, Vaxatra is empowered with the light of Axtrami. The teeth emit a soft glow which is useful for lighting up dark passages, and this glow will continue to emit until the wearer decides to use this light in combat. When this light is used, the warrior is given a burst of energy, able to strike seven times in the speed of one normal attack.
Current Whereabouts: The current location of Vaxatra is unknown, although it's last known location was in the Bracta desert, held by a war-leader of great reknown. His entire army was decimated one night by mysterious circumstances and Vaxatra has been missing ever since.
There are disagreements between the Ouzquin Dremorix society over how many enchanted Ouzala's there actually are. Some believe that there are actually 9, and that the original Ouzala was one of these. If still intact, they believe it would have some extremely potent enchantments on it. The whereabouts of the original Ouzala is unknown, and it is unconfirmed whether or not there is such a thing.
It is my recommendation that you do NOT embark into the Ouzquin Dremorix deserts to capture these artifacts: They are receptive to outsiders, but thievery of these artifacts are taken very seriously, and threats would not be intimidating to these people. Any attempt to forcefully obtain the Ouzala under the care of the Temple of Axtrami will be met with open hostility.
— A mage wishes to speak with a long-dead sorcerer to find out how to cast a spell, He has learned of the powers of Xactaki, and now sends you (The party) into Axtramiya Zuno to seek out this legendary weapon.
—One of your group has an intense dedication to endurance and travel, and he wishes to obtain Tarax from the priests in Bareka. The high priest recognises the party members devotion, and states that if a test can be carried out to affirm the man's dedication, he may take the weapon with his blessing. The test is bieng able to travel along the outskirts of the entire Karikun desert in one month, no horses, carts or other form of travel is allowed apart from his own body.
—One of your party members has been striken severely ill! And right after he performed (x action), too! That night, the ill person dreams of gods, deserts and lightning...
—encounter: While travelling in the northern reaches, The party listens in on a master-musician while staying at a respectable tavern. This musician looks quite odd, with that strange, ornate weapon on his back and the glass beads hanging from his person. A question or two asked reveals that he is a reknowned travelling musician known as 'Daraiki'.
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? Responses (17)
For those interested: Lord Scarlin went against Balrin's advice and, with a small army, entered the Karikun desert to forcefully obtain these enchanted weapons.
His sun-bleached bones have since been lost beneath the shifting dunes.
Credit given to Scrasamax for both his K'tonian Hegemony which inspired Vaxatra's Dreaming, and also for making Vaxatra itself.
http://www.strolen.com/content.php?node=2976 - K'tonian Hegemony
http://www.strolen.com/content.php?node=3090 - Vaxatra
Credit given to Wulfhere for the mention of Axtramiya Zuno - a destroyed city of his creation in the Sending of Axtrami.
http://www.strolen.com/content.php?node=3116 - Sending of Axtrami
As a side note, the item that Axtrami sends the people to find tends not to be that important: What is important is the rarity and difficulty in finding it, or the difficulty in parting with it - this shows the true devotion of those willing to obtain or part with it.
Wow. This is obviously a labor of love and it was a joy to read. The creation of the first ouzala made this a good post, but the following magic weapons made it great. A few of them I didn't care much for, such as lute and quill but Revenant, Unseen and Faith more than make up for those two. The progression of dream sequences and appearances of Axtrami are very well written.
Two thumbs up! and full honors. This is not only well written, and well presented, but it is also sometihng I would have to say is completely innovative, IE a listing of an entirely new type of weapon.
To each their own! Take your pick :D I, for one, like Revenant the best, but I also like the glass rain in Lute!
Where to begin?
This whole concept of sacred weapons and sacrifices is so ancient and yet so nuanced. I love that each Ouzala is so different, and only two are combative.
The characters are *brilliant*. So varied, so simple and yet complex. Each has their own quirks, their own calling to Axtrami.
I could go on, but I wouldn't know what else to say. This is an extraordinary post.
To quote The One, 'Woah'.
5/5 for these orginal magical weapons.
Everything I could say, has already been said.
HOLY SMOKES. This is like a tenfold sub. An awesome religion with a great back story to the weapon it cherishes (or derivitives therein) and how it became...and then you go on and add a ton more weapon variations with the tale of each of their creations. I would have been happy with coming up with one of these and I would be done.
5/5 and have an HoH
Once again I find myself reading one of your endless subs. :P And this was by far the longest I've read, BUT it didn't feel like a chore, it flowed from the beginning to the end. This was by far the easiest and most well deserved full score I've ever given, and here's a HoH as well.
Yep, brilliant stuff this!
HoH for my favorite sub in the Citadel.
Folks! Browse the subs here. These kind of treasures are here to be had!
5.0/5, HoH and fav'd.
Brilliantly done SE!