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Taiu ta Atzipe walked through the large enterance way and into the main hall of her castle. Well, castle might not be a good word for the building Taiu called home. The main hall was a large room with many stained glass windows, each which sparkled with a million lights. The ceiling was adorned with innumerable banners, all made of bright colors that distracted the eye. The room was designed so the wind which blew over the land of the gods, Zerua, echoed throughout the hall, sometimes creating a soothing whisper and others a loud cacophony of screeches and wailing. The air was thick with hundreds of different incenses burning in all corners of the room. The entire hall was designed to confuse the senses. However, none of this bothered Taiu. As she strode across the hall towards her inner chambers, Taiu wandered down what was for her a literal memory lane. Each of the windows depicted a different episode in her long history. Episodes that, to normal eyes, would be hidden and confused by the chaotic dance the lights played. But Taiu could easily see through the confusion. She was, after all, the goddess of deceit.
Taiu entered the inner chambers. In stark contrast
to the main hall, this part of her home was plain and simple.
Everything was made of white marble. In the center of the room
there was a bath and against the back wall was a sitting couch
and table, adorned with the finest fruits and meats. This was
Taiu's inner sanctum. This was where she came to rest and contemplate.
She approached the mirror that stood behind the bath,
looking at and appreciating herself as she drew nearer. Being
a goddess, Taiu more than amply filled her robe. Her large bosom
pressed against the confines of the robe that hung below her shoulders
and above her knees. The shiny black velvet of the robe contrasted
sharply with the white fur that trimmed the edges. Her hair fell
past her shoulders to the middle of her back, her glittering silver
mane offset by the black streak that went down the center. Her
boots matched the robe. Taiu was a sensuous goddess, though she
was definitely not a goddess of lust and love like Liki ta Ahal.
There were few mortals, however, that could resist her temptations.
Taiu stepped towards the bath, holding her arms out
to the side. As she did, three female servants, the transparent
cloth of their garments clinging to their bodies, rushed to her
from a side chamber. One removed her robe as the other two guided
her into the bath. She let herself stretch out, her luxurious
hair flowing across the marble floor. One of the servants combed
her hair as the other two bathed her, gently caressing her body
with soft sponges. Soon, Taiu closed her eyes and began to drift.
Things were changing, she thought to herself. She
couldn't quite figure out what was different, but she knew something
was. It was a small difference, hardly noticable. But, there
were very few things that could be hidden from Taiu's gaze. It
seemed to her that there was an almost inperceptable red haze
permeating the land, becoming one with the land.
Red. Red was the color of Indar ta Gudu. Taiu smiled
as her thoughts drifted to the most powerful of them all. Indar
had once been a god of war, but, through the eons, he had adapted.
He was now a god of empire, of expansion and adaptation. His
followers no longer killed their enemies, but rather made their
enemies become one with them. In time, Indar had gained such
a large body of worshippers that he soon displaced Lehen ta Zahar
as first among the gods.
Before his ascension, Indar and Taiu had been lovers.
The fruit of their love-making was Ander the Strong, the last
and greatest of the warlords of the mortals. Ander was an ardent
follower of his father, at a time when Indar was a terrible and
merciless god of war. Ander had led his people, the Odol, in
conquering all of the neighboring nations. The extent of his
kingdom was enormous, greater than any time previous in it's history.
However, Ander had made so many enemies during his conquests
that, upon the death of his mortal body, the kingdom collapsed.
The Odol were made slaves of by nations they once held in captivity
and terror. However, Indar had still had a large number of worshippers.
Without the capacity to make war, they adapted themselves to
their plight and, with time, they occupied some of the highest
positions in the various societies they had become a part of.
It was during this time that Indar had undergone his transformation.
He encouraged his priests to extend their power, not through
war as they had before, but through economic and political force.
Soon, all of the various nations had joined as one powerful empire,
an economic giant, before which all others were soon absorbed.
Of course, Taiu, and the other gods and goddesses
for that matter, enjoyed Indar's rise in power. For, as he gained
worshippers and the empire expanded, her followers also grew in
number. After all, in any political and economic system as large
and powerful as Odolia, there were more than enough men asking
for favors from the goddess of lies.
Suddenly, Taiu sat up, water flying in all direction,
her eyes wide with terror. She realized what was going on. It
had all started with Indar's gain of power. It had been happening
for such a long time, no one had noticed. Until now.
``Horixe! Indar is trying to remake all of reality in his image, and he's starting with Zerua!''