Thursday, July 28, 2011 will not be humans...

"I'd like to widen people's awareness of the tremendous timespan lying ahead -- for our planet, and for life itself. Most educated people are aware that we're the outcome of nearly 4bn years of Darwinian selection, but many tend to think that humans are somehow the culmination. Our sun, however, is less than halfway through its lifespan. Six billion years from now, it will not be humans who watch the sun's demise. Any creatures that then exist will be as different from us as we are from bacteria or amoebae."
Martin Rees, cosmologist and astrophysicist (b. 1942)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Lunar Mansions

By Tradition, the Lunar Gates of most Living Solar Systems are modeled upon the patterns established around Sol and Old Earth. Thus it is that these gates tend to be sequenced into twenty-eight sub-sections that correspond to the ancient scheme of the so-called Mansions of the Moon. Each of the twenty-eight sections or mansions possess or exhibit a particular psychecultural configuration and at least one appended set of distinct mythotype unique to itself. All of these have been developed and evolved over the centuries by adherents or refuters of the various schools and sub-sets of astrology that have endured or survived the rigors of the Rational Ages as well as the abysmal periods of rampant scientific superstition that followed in the wake of the Bitter Interregnum at the close of the Toxic Age.

Lunar gates celebrate the irrational and the intuitive. They are configured to access the subconscious of human minds, which tend to make them difficult for machines or mechisti to access them effectively as most mechanical forms lack a subconscious or have no direct, personal connection to the Collective Unconscious. Dianaiads are a hybridized genoculture developed to act as Guides and Companions to machines and the machine descended who seek to make use of the Lunar Gates. There are also those who design prosthetic subconscious emulators or who have developed temporary modular implantable/installable Collective Unconscious taps that can be used in some cases as well, but the dianaiads are known to dislike these particular prosthetics and many of the Resident Systems within the Lunar Precincts and Mansions object to them as well. In some cases use of such augmentation is considered an overt act of war or worse. Discretion is advised.

As Riskail has two moons (Duleeb & Voj), one must know how to differentiate one moon from the other when accessing one of the Lunar Gates. There may in fact be no single correct way to do this as the sub-systems of these gates seem to tap into the user's subconscious in order to tailor the parameters of access personally. Some object to the intimate intrusion of the gates' sub-systems into their cortex and psyche, but it is the way of these things and access to the moons is completely voluntary. No one is required to travel through these subsidiary networks.

In the case of artifical constraints, imposed restraints or cultural conflicts brought about by the interaction of individuals or social clusters, one may appeal to the Court Triformica and make their case before a host of attendant AIforms, tutelary memghosts, recovered mentalities, Lesser Mythoi, and others who serve in the Sub-Lunary Zones of inhabited planets in the hopes of suitably distinguishing themselves as to gain either enfleshment or induction into the Lunar Ecologies or the Moon River.

Duleeb has six inhabited Lunar Mansions, Voj has at least eighteen that are known or registered. There may well be several more that are clandestine, temporary or spurious in nature. Very little is allowed to be strictly factual or unambiguous within the Lunary Zones, so such numbers should be considered a rough estimate at best.

The Mythoi have a lot of influence within the Lunary Zones across nearly all Known Inhabited Systems and possibly quite a few that are technically uninhabited as well. It is advised that one at least consider cultivating some vestige of respect for the more mythic aspects of the extended human psychosphere, despite whatever form of rationality one might prefer, subscribe to or cherish. The realms and regions beyond the Lunar Gates have a strong oneiric potential to them and most, if not all, partake of the most ancient dreamscapes and vestigial instincts and other buried impulses that remain deeply ingrained within human consciousness. It is said that those who cannot dream need not attempt to enter the Lunar Gates for they shall not be capable of finding their way.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Cosmogrottoes of Riskail

Within the very midst of Inner Drukhai, between the Void Forests that stretch across the inner-system towards the sun and the Veil Jungles that sprawl outwards to entangle every last bit of debris and available matter even unto Udesh (and somewhat past it even), one will find the Cosmogrottoes. These lesser habitats occupy a fairly narrow Orbital Zone on the very fringes of the Inmost Verdant Sphere. For some unexplained reason the majority of autonomous organoplex-systems and competing feral sub-systems within this region respect the registered boundaries of the Cosmogrottoes, despite contesting nearly every other boundary or claim, either registered or not.

The Cosmogrottoes are predominently spherical shellworlds, each one impinging upon a shared central Serial Sea that spans three hundred and sixty parallel solar systems, all of them lesser K-type stars just on the periphery of the Central Cultural Confluence.

The Serial Sea fills approximately half of the ante-sunward interior chamber of the Cosmogrottoes with a nested cluster of coral-anchored Sea Gates embedded deep beneath the surging waters. Small family-groups of Du'Vallja are known to prowl, hunt and wander about the Cosmogrottoes. Some of them act as Guides to Larkers, Experiographers and various sorts of Meddlers or even Adventurers, though Adventurers are most often discouraged by the Du'Vallja who well remember the debacle of Maklune's Folly or the destruction of Kanjoss by unscrupulous seekers after forgotten things.

Swarms of barnoblasts maintain the hundred-mile-thick latticed hull-skins of the Cosmogrottoes. It is rumored that someone has convinced a colony of these things to construct a fabulous personal redoubt or retreat nestled deep within the sea-washed crevasses and erosion-channels of a particular habitat, but the coordinates are unavailable, despite a data-bounty having been set by certain anonymous interested parties.

Several practising Genartists have spent time within this Sub-Ecology, each one contributing a different and integrated array of plants, animals and bactoforms to the overall mix...except for the unregistered clonedaughter of a so-far undisclosed Scylloi Matriarch who was eventually driven off in the middle of her birthing of a number of sea monsters derived from her own gene-stocks. Red Buoys have been stationed near the known nesting grounds of those aberrant offspring that have been reported or spotted, but like with most Scylloi creatures, many of these things are able to foil, fool or confuse sensors and automated systems. Thus there are always openings for interested parties to join the on-going volunteer patrols that seek to hunt down and contain, capture or neutralize the various horrific beasts and monsters that have contaminated the Cosmogrottoes' gate-synchronized ecosystem.
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