What are the Fragments? What is Noth? To address these questions, and to give you all an idea of the world that Ain’t No Redemption is set in, I present to you this essay, written from the point of view of a great scholar, sage and con artist: Mump.
(Note that Ain’t No Redemption, takes place in the Fragment known as Tume)
A Treaty of Fragments
Prepared by Mump, for the High Administrator of the Blackwatch
It is said that to be ignorant is to live in paradise, and the less one knows the simpler life shall be. Of course, being persons of rare intellect, ignorance is not an option. This is why we delve, why we search for hidden truths. It was, after all, folk such as us who first sought to make contact with the Gulf Dwellers; who first pulled the chime on Perdition’s Door and broke bread with the Gods of the Underworld. It was us who, in the dim light of the first days, began to ask questions; questions that led, over centuries and millennia, to civilization. Today, High Administrator, I shall attempt to address three issues: What was the cause of the Calamity that sundered our world? Why did it, this Calamity, create the Fragments (as opposed to complete annihilation)? And, how can we categorize and organize these Fragments?
For years now (more than this old man cares to count) my colleagues and I have studied, and argued, the origin of the Sundering. Some maintain that it was the Olden, our very own Gods, who, in a fit of Immortal rage (read: Godly Temper-tantrum) smote our dear Noth,and tore it apart. Of course, this line of thinking comes from those who put more value in superstitions than proper, arcane and scientific research. Others point to our own ancestors, claiming that it was Mortals who brought down cataclysm, by harnessing sorcerous powers beyond their control. I will admit that that does sound like us, but, I believe that the answer can be found somewhere in between these lines of thinking. Pictographs seen at sites such as Raker’s Rock, the Den of the Wolf Mother, and even below Blackwatch Tower, point to a battle, a war fought by those above, those below and us, silly Mortals caught in between. They show the Olden coming down from their unseen fortresses to do battle with the Under Gods from Perdition and Glooming. Imagine, a war fought on a global scale, where devastating powers were unleashed by Gods and Demon Kings, and Mages of unmatched potential.
Creation of the Fragments
It seems that this War, and the eldritch power used therein, ate into the fabric of space and time. The concept is difficult to comprehend, even for such men as us, High Administrator. So, let me conjure for you this imagery: Portions of the world, landmasses and oceans, cut off from each other and floating in a great Void. Imagine, if you will, them in orbit around the dark core that is the Realm of Glooming. Those are the Fragments of Noth, parts of what used to be our world, only now they act as worlds unto themselves. Even more curious than this disconnect geography is the Temporal Effect: each of those pseudo-worlds maintains its own timeline, derived from a period of our history – and future. Through the Great Eye I have glimpse Fragments born of our distant past, when Fire was our God and stone tools our legacy. But, I have seen Fragments with wonders that I would never have imagined, where the people are connected through devices that allow them to communicate over vast distances instantaneously.
Organization of the Fragments
Currently, it is not difficult to organize these Fragments, as we have only been able to glimpse but a few in our studies. First, and most relevant to ourselves, is the Rannite/Dorrite Fragment – our own. As far as I have seen, this is the only Fragment in which the Blackwatch has any true foothold. Tume is a Fragment of Wastelands and Gunpowder, with little in the way of government and law – a mercenary’s dream come true. Hearth is a Fragment of our earliest days, of which I mentioned earlier – where we made homes of caves. And finally, this brings us to Aurora, where massive cities burn brightly with light that cannot be extinguished. But, while these are only a few, it is my belief that more remain to be discovered – that there could be as many as a dozen Fragments of Noth, each sitting in their own pool of Time.
In summary, we still have much to do if we wish to understand these Fragments, their relationship to each other and, Olden willing, find a way to bring them back together.
From your most trusted and uncanny servant,