Awakening: Gunther Ravendell

“In the pink ether of the Netherworld, shimmering flashes of triangles, swirls, serpentines, and amorphous blobs of smoke roil through each other at a maddening pace– then sometimes there’s nothing, only quiet. You know that feeling you get when the air becomes so dense your ears turn into shattering crystal shards, and all you can taste is fluorescence?

No, you probably don’t– you can’t relate, because you’ve never had an experience like it.

You can’t remember that time an eyelash bit through your super-psyche, and all the world felt like a brittle pane of profundity– because in your world, such sensations don’t take place; you have no proper basis for comparison. The fact is, I’m already choosing words that can give you the closest glimpse of what I’m talking about, because the proper words to describe those feelings don’t even exist– and I don’t mean that they don’t exist in your world, I mean they don’t exist at all. To convey the truth of these feelings, I’d have to layer my thoughts and emotions over your own, but even then it would only be adequate if you first cleared your being and spirit of all other distracting influences.

Can you do that? Even that one little trifling thing?

How disappointing; I thought not.

You see children, it’s not that every story in your world has been told; it’s that every story of significance, comprehensible to limited human understanding, has been told. At least in general terms.

If I could tell you the full story of the Netherworld– as it is properly meant to be conveyed– you would quite quickly lose your mind. If I told you in your own limited tongue, you would easily be bored to tears and beg me to stop wasting your time.

You need more examples? Very well:

How many emotions of slime could you measure if they graced your ear? What’s the correct piscatory smell to evoke the memory of lust for a holy head-dressing? If I flashed 11 differently-coloured simultaneous beams of light at you, what would be the proper sequence and array to convey the feeling of a comet caught in your gills?

So you see, there are simply too few words– and far too limited human comprehension– to truly tell every story to be told. In over a hundred billion of your own lifetimes, you haven’t even come close to telling one billionth of them. You mostly just recycle the same basic seven stories over and over in different formats. And we? The children of the eldest worlds?

Even we have no idea the true number of stories to be told. I based my figures on what we alone know to be true; and our stories outshine yours like W Cephei to a dying ember in your campfire. Again, a poor analogy, given the limitations of your possible comprehension and language.

Consider a dot on a piece of paper; let this dot represent the very notion of telling a story at all.

Now draw a circle one inch in diameter surrounding that dot. Let this represent basic creativity in telling a story.

Now draw a circle three inches in diameter surrounding that circle– let this represent the idea of advanced storytelling, with interesting plot-hooks, relatable characters, and a sensible story-arc; creating tropes and stereotypes, but doing so in fun and interesting ways.

Now draw a circle 3.5 inches in diameter around that– this represents the idea of adding “twists”, breaking tropes and stereotypes, and granting people a new point of view. This is approximately where most of humanity plateaus in storytelling…

… but then: draw a circle 8 inches in diameter around that! Here are the true artists; those who tap into another realm to tell stories so different and sublime that they captivate audiences for generations to come! These artists make beautiful, almost poetic use of your languages in order to whisk the audience away to that special somewhere; and these gems are the redeeming revelries of your world. This is the peak of human storytelling potential.

Yet, we are not finished, for there is a circle .5 inches in diameter around that, of which your kind has not yet tapped into– but they will, one day.  This represents the evolution of your stories into new technological storytelling media; the stories themselves will not improve, but the audience comprehension will, and that itself makes the stories better– and even this is not the end!

For there are greater circles encompassing greater circles around greater circles, all of which dwarf the circles that dwarf the circles which dwarf your own. These circles represent the stories told by greater minds with a wider variety of experience, and vastly greater comprehension. These are the stories that beings tell, who are gods compared to your mortal mind.

Perhaps one day you will understand– but until then, hear my tale, and know that the only reason it is not more wondrous, more fantastic, and earth-shatteringly beautiful, is because you couldn’t possibly understand it, if it were.”

Azroqqiel went on to tell poor Gunther a story so amazing, that by the end of it, Gunther could do naught but sit wide-eyed, mouth agape, tears streaming from his blood-shot eyes down his dry and chapped face, and choke upon his very breath which he so held in anticipation of the great climax he received. The resolution to the story left him fully satisfied, and internally he begged to hear the next story in the saga, but his body and spirit were left too weak to hear a single additional line. His ears rang with songs and battles he never heard, and it drowned out all other sounds of his own world. Gunther sat in this rapturous state for nearly three full days, while fae folk languidly milked his dreams, intoxicating themselves on the quality and abundance of those tangential thoughts.

A daemon came to Gunther, and attempted to rob him of his very soul, but so powerful was the reverberating essence of the story, the daemon could naught but shield his face as if from a blinding light, and retreat back into the abyss.

On the third day, a compassionate sprite brought Gunter a leaf full of water, and broke the spell of entrancement upon his mind. Gunther shook his head suddenly, as if trying to shake off hypnotic dust, and fell to his knees weeping in gratitude for the sprite. He begged the sprite to ask anything of him, and he would grant its wish; the sprite thought for only a moment and said, “MAGIC!”

Gunther repeated, not understanding, “Magic?”

The sprite clarified, “Learn to weave magic, and spread it throughout this world!”

Gunther sniffled a bit, wiping a silvery strand of mucous away from his nose with his sleeve, “What kind of magic shall I learn?”

Every kind!” the sprite exclaimed. “Especially stories!”

So, upon shakey knees, Gunther rose and shuffled off against the dying light; a spark in his eye, and honour in his heart, determined to grant the sprite’s wish, and sew the seeds of All Magic throughout the world.

 

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