The Queen Walks Picture

For this week's Wednesday update, we have a page from my sketchbook. (Okay, technically it's my lesson planning notebook, as evidenced by the lines and minuscule drawing size, but really, the difference is negligible.) This particular doodad is a war machine designed by the ancient Abyssal Empire - a piece of backstory for the Moon-Struck project.

In the days before the modern nations came to be, there was an empire centered in the region now known as the Dead Lands - the Abyssal Empire. Their iron rule left marks, not just on history, but on mythology as well. Their magi were as gods, creators of impossibility and masters of such works of power as were never seen before or since.

In their overweening lust for power, they invoked forbidden arts, to speak with things whose subtlety and horror could not be surpassed. They made machines that melded magic and the more mundane of forces. They dug deep in search of aether - that most magickal of elements - and they found, instead, the Things That Breathe.

They saw an opportunity in this - for the Things exuded aether in amounts that mortal magic could not hope to burn away. They built war machines with chambers that entrapped them, chains of iron which bound them. And one, the mightiest of all, was christened the Queen's Raiment, flagship of the Old Empire of Febury.

But one day, the creature at the heart of the Queen's Raiment was set free.

On the following day, an Empire that had spanned the world had crumbled underneath the onslaught of its monstrous slaves. The Queen, still carrying Her Raiment, marched from land to land, obliterating all who stood against Her wrath.

For nearly 1,500 years, the Queen has ruled, Her Raiment rusting in the pits beneath the earth. Life seems somewhat natural. Yet the people, when they hear Her name, are still given pause - for they fear, lest She in all Her Glory ever march across the lands, as She did long ago.

Febury remembers. The graffiti blazons darkened alleyways; the phrase is whispered by the desperate and the damned:


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