Ladies in Hades and the Dyval Wears Prada
Journal - Trent - Entry 39
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I’ve been busy these last few months. I’ve been all over the place, taking full advantage of the guild’s resources in this and other locations and dimensions when necessary. Lets see if I can break this all down quickly.
- The minion war has started. Near as I have been able to determine, it erupted into full-force fighting that spilled out across the world around the same time we all left to go to Ancient Babylon. The Devil’s Gate in old Saint Louis, especially, has erupted with Demons and Deevils like a dormant volcano. The mighty Coalition has been powerless to hold them at bay and has been steadily driven back towards Chi-Town (the only good thing about this war!). Reports have filtered in that major battles have also taken place in Russia, Atlantis, Psyscape, The Palladium World, and China. And that’s just what we’ve heard about. Anyone who can fight has found ample work.
- I found a stowaway – one of those Nexus Maw worms managed to somehow slip into one of my less-important dimensional bags. I froze it in time, destroyed the bag, packed back up and destroyed the space we were in when I found it. It can keep the mutant Brek-Shall company in the limbo between dimensions.
- I greatly expanded my knowledge of magic using the guild resources. Knowledge is key, and I’ve shored up many of the deficiencies I’ve noted in my abilities. It cost almost four million credits but I feel its money well invested.
- Those two rune items I found in the tower have been identified: “Eye-Gouge the Obfuscator” and “Veiled Threat,” a dagger and a pole arm, respectively. I will discuss their fate with the group once we are reunited.
- Those strange beads I recovered from Ishtar’s cave in Ancient Babylon, they are made of Gantrium! An incredibly rare, and incomparably valuable, metal with magical properties. What it’s purpose is or was has eluded me for now, though. Their value is so high I do not dare involve anyone other than Tyvernos in my research into their properties, but even he could do little more than identify the metal.
- I’ve found precious little information to back up my theories on the nature of time. What little I have found, though, has been encouraging.
- That strange book that nearly took over my mind, one of the guild mages which was researching it became possessed by it instead and took off. Poor man. That’s quite unfortunate.
- I’ve found no clues or information which could explain the blinding white light and consuming darkness I witnessed end my own dimension. For now that continues to remain a mystery.
- I’ve found no clues or information which pertain to the puzzling references I’ve been given lately, concerning “Dimensions of the Mind.” I may have to do some serious meditative introspection to really delve into this, on my own.
- Jescha and I have parted ways. When some weeks went by and she didn’t contact me, I went to find her. She had been sick but has recovered. But she was left feeling drained, and felt that she needed to re-unite with the Enclave in order to start feeling herself again. I read between these lines, and her subtle hints in our conversation… Her and I were finished as long as I maintained my relationship with my inhuman companions. I love her, I loved her, but… I cannot meet her demands. I cannot force myself to have the same attitude as the Coalition – even thinking about it gives me major migraine headaches. I was sorry to see our relationship end this way, but there was no compromise. She is who she is, as I am who I am. I have accepted that and moved on.
Now for the two most major discoveries.
FIRST: This… issue with magical energy… Returning to this time all but slapped me in the face with it. Having tasted the energy which erupted during the apocalypse, I realize now that the energy around us in this time is… corrupted, somehow. It’s tough to find the word for it. I’ve done significant research, performed numerous experiments, and even explored numerous locations in my attempts to learn more about this. And what I’ve learned is alarming.
This issue is just about everywhere – any dimension which has ever been connected even briefly to any major nexus point on this planet has been infected similarly. I think I traced it back to its origin… a dimension of super heroes, shortly before their second major world war. In my short time experimenting and researching this it became obvious to me that this taint on magical energy was not only getting worse, it is accelerating at an alarming rate.
What little I have pieced together on this though has made me consider… what if the insanities which we all are developing are just a side-effect? Some warning mechanism, or symptom, perhaps, to make us realize something was wrong? I uncovered that beings with larger reserves of magical energy were affected first (such as the gods!) and it hit them the hardest. But it’s been going on for so long and it’s been increasing in its effect so much that now, even mortals with the most minor of magical abilities have even noted these “side effects.”
All this exposure to this magical energy contamination… I just don’t feel clean anymore. No matter how many times I wash myself I just don’t feel like I can get it off of me. Is this related? I don’t know. But I do know that I need to be very careful about who I trust to share this knowledge with. I haven’t even shared it with Tyvernos. No, when Pall Mall returns I shall have a talk with him about this.
SECOND: I’ve read through that journal I found, the “gift” from the future/alternate Trent. FuTrent? AlternaTrent? I haven’t come up with a good designation yet. My mind’s been otherwise occupied. But the journal! It’s a treasure trove of information that could only possibly be more valuable if the writer hadn’t been obviously insane by the end.
He became obsessed with the Cosmic Forge – after years of searching he realized that he couldn’t find it without having the Book of Heroes and the Omega Book. He blamed the Promethians for keeping spell knowledge hidden from him – knowledge he was sure could help him fix his condition. Somehow he learned how to deliberately travel through time, though it appears that doing so was in part responsible for the insanities he displayed by the end. In this journal, early on, he discusses his own companions – no-one that I know of in my reality, but trusted allies he worked with until… well, some of them died, some of them stopped trusting him after he made certain decisions, and the others just aren’t mentioned anymore.
The final entry is the most telling. In it he mentions mental fractures and internal dimensions. He talks about multiple minds and harmonics… such fragmented knowledge, just casually talked about. Is this what I have to look forward to? Is this my future? Or, somehow, impossibly, is this my past? I don’t know, and I can’t know right now. Am I, was I, or will I be this person? I don’t know and I can’t know right now. I am who I am, and even if my memories of my past are false, they are what makes me who I am today. I cannot be anyone other than that.
The man who wrote the journal, who could be me, who might have been me, or might have started as me… at the end of his journal he writes: “A desperate man has nothing left to lose. A desperate man has nothing left to fear. I must save myself and in so doing, save the Megaverse.” Whatever happened to lead him to that point specifically is unclear, but what is clear is that he made sacrifices in order to achieve what he felt was the greater good. But what he sacrificed, the deals he seems to have made… Take away the madness and it paints a picture of someone desperately trying to do what he feels needs to be done, and growing to hate himself more and more in his pursuit of doing so.
Are we so different? I hope so. I read this journal as a warning. This represents a possibility for my future could hold, or what my past has held, or what my life would be in another universe. I will heed this warning, despite all my other misgivings. I feel there are so few people I can trust, but going it alone is not the answer. This book proves it. I need the aid of my companions, I have to force myself to trust them now, more than ever. Or else… no. There is no “or else.” Message received, future/alternate Trent. Thank you for this warning. I shall heed it.
Time to meet with my companions. They will be arriving shortly.
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