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Welcome to the voting thread for the 10th Scribe's Contest writing competition!

"And the baleful beast heaved and snorted, and the pillars of the world trembled..."

How to vote:
Please submit 3 numbers as votes by sending a PM to Scribe account (a special account all Staff members can access). We had 9 entries this time, which means each entrant will receive 9 slaves once the winners have been announced.

You are not allowed to vote for your own entry.

Each (more or less) anonymous entry is numbered ranging from 1 to 9. There is no need to specify which one you think is 1st, 2nd or 3rd. Simply list the three that you like we will do the rest.

Voting will close at 11:59 PM August 7th, 2017 EST (Eastern Standard Timezone).  Once the votes are tallied we will post the results.

Subject Matter: The True Nature of the Father of Darkness

Entry #1

I wish to present a translation of the surviving Nebabtite Tablets found beneath the ruins of Golfrasur: Age uncertain, author unknown.

I have used the Amourfaitfils' translation. Though possibly more controversial than the standard form I feel that its use of pronouns is justified by the similarities in grammatical form to first age Duardin Script.

The B'hanic Manuscripts mentioned are also noted in the heresies of the mad Archmage Escriveon but there is no record of them other than that.

The timing, placing and indeed reality of the events recorded is unknown. Hartsson has suggested a reference to an era predating even the age of myth. The more wild metaphysical assertions he argues are allegorical.

Professor Aych-Peeyell

”....fled east. Driven by the cataclysm that had overtaken their.......lured by the dark figure ......dreams promising....salvation they...

......Plain of Bones they came...... ruined city. Great blocks hinted.... strange architecture....... twisted geometry that......ziggurat that dominated.......aeon weathered obsidian........ protection from the sorcerous winds.........howled.....mutating and twisting all outside.

Safe within....bas reliefs....strange glyphs seeming to squirm and shift just......sight.... trying to find a ..... they could understand.......The Nameless City stirred in her sleep........roused from.....her new children safe...... her bosom that....

Once again...... ever thus and will be again....... For this.........the dark city ALmaddul screamed of...his daemon ridden sight. Broken shard.......shattered dimension destroyed by greed. Alien and......remnant and refugee locked together....

....same city hinted ........B'hanic Manuscripts. S'Hir Ng gnd the eternal....dark thorn stuck ...flesh of our reality. Haunted.......her lover....ghost..... forgotten god stalking halls and corridors.....Thirsting.......worship that makes dreams flesh....Blood.......memories whole....rise again.

Greed incarnate......Alien and undying....Outside time....Gather new children...... again........”

Entry #2

Never barest heat of glowing coal
nor searing flash of breath fed ember.
Not in red eyed glare of molten brand
Nor tempest flare in roaring timber.
In strength of raging minotaur none
nor two thousand pounds of crushing bull.
Not heavy engine of destruction
Comes to price nor pays the final toll.
But rather in the full of endless
rage and mindless fill the smoking dram,
and touch the fiery cusp that fills
the endless burning brutal core I am.

Entry #3

A Flaming Load of Bull

“Evidential transcript number one. I submit to you the so-called song that the accused and co-conspirators performed on the steps of the Grand Ziggurat yesterday evening. They claim to be in a metal band, whatever that is.”

Faster than an Eldritch spell
You are terrifying, beautiful
Blazing, mighty Lord of Hell
And a flaming load of bull!

Master of Dawi Zharr pulling my chain
You’re twisting reality and opening doors
Blinded by you, I fight through the pain
Just say my name, then I’ll scream yours
Just say my name, then I’ll scream yours
A flaming load of bull!

A mighty daemon nestled between dead and alive
A fiery god-beast - no portents, no signs
Day of judgement, but will our prince arrive
Eventually, we’re all buried in the mines

When the mountain starts to crack, there’s no use turning back
'Cause I just had to see, was Hashut really watching me?
In the ash and mist reality twists
Was all this well, or just some kind of spell?
Just say my name, then I’ll scream yours
Where are you?

A flaming load of bull!
(Guitar Solo)

On the holy Plain of Zharr
Prophets raise the battle cry
Ten thousand foes come from afar
But do we pray to an empty sky?

A flaming load of bull!

Flaming bull…bull…bull, flaming bull..bull..bull ( Fade )

“As you can see, this vile blasphemy calls into question the very existence of our divine master! Have you anything to say for yourself, vile worm?”

Entry #4

Father in Darkness

Lord Z’Lenn trudged into the tunnels, his bodyguards trailing behind. The walk was shorter than it once had been. The struggle against chaos had raged for years, the fighting constant, sapping their numbers and assailing their will.

Those on guard saluted him and left, visibly weary. As Z’Lenn settled in for his vigil, the space began to darken as it had many times before. He extended his senses, attempting to find the source. He knew something was there, but again could not define it. The presence coalesced and Z’Lenn drew his power in, he had waited for this chance to confront this thing. He projected his will and demanded. “Who are you?!”

Silence surrounded Z’Lenn; as a hiss prickled at the back of his neck;

His answer was a cascade of hot breath, exhaled from all around him.
>>“I am your saviour”<<
“I can save myself”
>>“No you cannot. Believe in me, I can save you”<<

The voice echoed away and the awareness of encroaching chaos returned. Masses of mutated beings streaming towards him. He unleashed bright clean fire and they burned, he shot clear white lightning and they fried, but multitudes kept coming. He felt his strength waning and knew that this time he couldn’t hold.

>>“I can help you.”<<
>>“Believe in me. Do Fire, like this.”<<
Z’Lenn sent fire, dark fire in a thousand shades of blood.
>>“Worship me. Do lightning like this.”<<
Z’Lenn sent lightning, black shards reflecting darkness.
>>“Exalt in me. Do this. Like this.”<<
Z’Lenn released chains of dark fire and darker lightning and the demons fell down, bound.

Z’lenn looked at the darkness and believed.
Z’lenn bowed to the darkness and worshipped it.
“Who are you? He asked again”
The Darkness replied,
>>“I am your Father”<<
Z’Lenn exalted in belonging.

Entry #5

Grungni's Pained Anger

In misty days of olden yore there clanged and banged a hammer. Wrought with runes, strong to strike, it forged nails, arms and wonders alike. Upon doom-laden anvil, it struck hot matter again and again. Sparks flew. This hammer was Irongrip of the Depths, and it was wielded by leathery hands that could tear rocks apart. Those powerful hands were the Ancestor God Grungni's, praised be his lore, craft and works until the world ends and the mountains come crashing down.

One midwinter night, dour Grungni struck and struck again at the red-glowing matter upon his anvil. He turned it hither and thither, and so hardened was his thick skin that he did not even need tongs to turn the hot matter. And thus, whenever a fine angle was sought, he dropped the tongs and clenched the sizzling metal between his fingers, keeping it as steady as the ancient heart of the mountains while he struck the matter with his mighty hammer. Yet this frosty night, curses were upon the wind, and Grungni slipped with his hammer. He struck his own thumb, and he yelled and swore, driving his reddening hand into the water pail into which the hot metal is lowered to cool and harden.

Yet as Grungni moved his pained hand to the water pail, a single drop of glowing, hot blood fell from his thumb down upon the Anvil of Doom. So furious was Grungni in his anger that the blood caught fire in mid-air, landing in flames upon the anvil. And from those tiny flames sprang a tiny spark-being shaped like a dark bull, running off into the world. And so the Accursed One who shall not be named was created by the blacksmith's wrath.

- Excerpt from the forbidden Dwarf tome
Blood Grudge

Entry #6

What truly makes a God?

The Four have been named the Gods of so-called Chaos and the mortals of the world have deities that number in the dozens and more. But where do they come from, these beings above all?

Perhaps they are birthed through the belief and actions of mortals? But this feels false. What of the grey-clad stranger who became the Horned Rat, what of the Father of Darkness of the Dawi Zharr? Both created or altered their worshippers rather than being created by them.

Are they lesser servants of those that sit at the pinnacle of godhood, who through trickery and deceit became near equals to their masters? Hashut is fire and darkness, a shard of the Lord of Skulls? No, Hashut is much more than a servant or shard of Khorne. Hashut’s chosen wield great sorcery and whose worshippers are anything but ‘honourable martial warriors’. The Horned Rat is pestilence and ruination, a shard of the Grandfather of Pustules? No, for the rat is ever evolving, there is no joy within its heart, only envy.

But Hashut is so much more and so much less. He is the fiery light that births the shadow of which he is lord. Shadow and flame. Strange bedfellows but so intertwined. Light and darkness and yet impure. Missing. Was he a shard, a shadow of something greater, something whole? Not a shard of the others but someone else.

I see his fire burn and yet there is coldness to his flame.

I wish to grasp it and know him.

But I cannot.

A gnarled hand, cracked like molten rock grasped the scrap of cindered parchment. Eyes like shadows but with the intensity of burning coals peered at the disintegrating words. A mouth ashen and dark twisted into a smile.

Entry #7

Lust for power

The shadows contorted to and fro, the flames rose in the middle of the spires, all joining into a whirlwind of agonizing fire. The air thickened, the darkness consumed the light and tainting the flame to turn a dark reddish hue, the colour of freshly dried blood, the dark firespout spiralled into the roof of the temple.

The aged sorcerer stood before the summoning, clearly straining to contain the force clawing through the chaos, a force that devoured the light and left only darkness. The fire turned almost black as the shape of pure dread and destruction took form. With eyes that glowed like the deepest fires under Zharrduk, snarling smoke and lightning it gnarled “Nu rhun marazit... Dar... langked.... Or.... rhun rik!” and with its final words the colour of blood illuminated the room from within the fire.

Clearly defined, the glowing eyes set in a daemonic, horned, bull-shaped mask; blood red hair leaked from the sides of the blackened metal. His armour like dragon scales black and burnt, from millennia hidden in the Chaos Warp, obscured by a thick curly beard matching his hair and swirling fire, smoke and lightning. Clutched in one hand, a godly runic axe inscribed with ancient dwarven runes, unlike anything a chaos dwarf had seen in over 5 thousand years. The dwarf god that stood before them and screamed “Zagaz Or Zagzak, Grimnir,” as the brightness overwhelmed everyone in the room and forced them to look away.

Entry #8

"Refered to as Arch-Daemons or Lesser Chaos Gods, to glimpse into the what is of the Father of Darkness, we look to these lesser Chaos Gods, such as Malal, the Horned Rat, Ans'l, Mo'rcck, Phraz-Etar, Necoho, Khorne's Urlf, Zuvassin, the weird Nuffle or even to the Dark Lord of Mordheim, first and last Daemon Prince of Chaos Undivided, Be'lakor, who while not technically a Lesser God of Chaos schemed during the End Times to become the Fifth Ruinous Power by breaking through the Chaos Gate of Grimnir's Fortress Kazad Drengazi.

What these Lesser Deities of Chaos share is the channeling of powers (or possession of the virtues) belonging normally in the spectrum of the Ruinous Four. Maybe mostly accented in Urlf who even bestows the Mark and mutations of Khorne to his worshippers but surely even the Horned Rat is an amalgam of these four fundamental elements of Chaos, waxing primarily in Tzeentch's warpmagic and mutations as well as Nurgle's pestilence and multiplicity.

Hashut, the Father of Darkness, is The Shadow of the Flame that is Zharr-Naggrund, the Bull-God of the Chaos Dwarf. An amalgam waxing primarily in Khorne's strife, war and rage (The Father of Darkness is even portrayed as a red raging fiery bull), of Tzeentch's alchemical magic mixed with the ancient Dwarf arts of smithing and even into the black brilliance of the ecstasy, the wish to enslave and to dominate that belongs to Slaanesh, looming as a shadow beyond the obvious. Interesting enough with no visible traces of Nurglian influence, the Chaos Dwarfs are few and neither subject to decay or multiplicity, giving an alchemical meaning to the Fires of Hashut."

-Except from the forbidden
Alchemy of Chaos

Entry #9

The Witch of Rashan

"...What can I say of these voiceless, sneering masks? We traded much flesh for burnished steel, yet no words were spoken. It is said among the Horselords that Houtha did not even negotiate! Vaszu-cha!!

After, our hill camp was not yet even ringed with stakes when we saw they had made a vast pyre from blocks of blue-black stone dragged behind their train. It was quickly framed with dangling chains and gibbets and, I tell you now! - they built a hungry fire to consume their own vast prize in a chorus of bloodless screams! All the while, they praised and scraped to a throneless fiend that no tribe knows, or knelt in thralled wonder of him while the growing shadows danced about the flames.

In the mead-sick haze of morn, there were but ashes and cinder to speak of the Zharrlings' passing. My mind is unquiet, mother. Tell me of... Ash-Uhr."

"Wait... Chakha ko taku. I have with me an... other. He roils within. He is Malacerion the Ancient. A Lammasu of Ash-Uhr."

"Yazzht! F'jatrak! I have seen the Father's eyes. I have seen His mind. Hashut called to me before your kind emerged from the cast-off smegma of the Old Ones. In darkness, He sanctified me with ash and holy flame, and told me truths of death and of limitless pain. The Dawi-Zharr are His alone and He lurks at the core of their being, in every shadow of the mind and behind every whisper of the heart. His joy is the roar of conflagration. His pride is the silent ashen waste that comes after. His pity is the release of death from unspeakable agonies. You have not yet earned even his contempt. Begone!"

"Mother, are you....? By the true gods... her eyes... We are cursed."

Remember, the Gold winner's prize will be one unpainted resin kit of Four Reliefs:

Great job folks and good luck!

The Staff

Also on CDO: Photobucket TOS Woes & Third party image hosting
Photobucket Migration to the Darklands – Stage I
Photobucket Migration to the Darklands - Stage II
I'll have to get back to the other 8 entries.
Right now, I can't stop trying to fit a song to No 3.
What a good read this has been, will reread tomorrow and make up my mind, well done everyone Takes Hat off
Some really good pieces
Still looking for that song.
Any hints?..........................................................
My votes are in Takes Hat off
Damned good work! Sending my votes now it was a tough call.
@Abecedar - Rock out by Motorhead?
Last day to vote, folks!
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