Wednesday, July 1, 2015

City of Curses: An Introduction in Seven Voices

Ok.  #Crux, City of Curses is about a year old now.  Around this time last year- Late June to Early July, I sketched the image of a skull with a clocktower atop it.  My best friend was moving out of the state to college, and both of us weren't sure we could continue our gaming relationship.  

We didn't make it.  

I had been posting stuff on my blog regularly at that point, and still sort of use it as a creative outlet for myself.  I lack the confidence to try to get my work published, yet I enjoy sharing my half-finishing ramblings.  I don't know why.

Crux was born out of a curious urge to have a world of dark fantasy done my way.  There are no elves,  no dwarves.  There are no easy answers.  Darkness looms all around, and yet the emerging sciences and technology offer hope.  Cosmic horrors and faeries abound.  And it is a world that dares to dream of woman in power or on parity with men, with no pretense.  Sexuality that doesn't care about orientation or gender status in a world of constant transmutation and other things.

A darker world, yet with its own unique different benefits.  Since last July, I've posted constantly on it.  Its become the centerpiece of my #FateCore campaign.  And I've started to write longer and longer prose set in it.  

Crux is one of the many worlds floating in my imagination.  Here is an introduction to the City of Curses, the Maru Sea's gateway and a place ruled by a mysterious prince:

The City of Curses has stood for over ten thousand years.  They call it Crux because it sits on
crossroads.  But I think they call it cursed because of the massive skull that is its greatest landmark.  In this new age of industry and wonders, though, Crux seems to suit.

Crux has seen everything.  And you can find just about anything here too.  From the newest firearms the University can design, to the sweet singing of the Divas of the Singer of the Song, you can find it here.  There are dangers in the shadows, yes.

But this city is where the new age, will come.  Crux is the birthplace of technological wonders, and one hopes, perhaps, new chances for those without any.
Maralda Tyranus Inculti; Tomasi Bard and Student of the University of Crux

This city belongs to the Demon's Orphans.  The Prince of Crux hides in shadows.  But this is a new age.  The old Prince can't last so long as we have gunpowder and the demon's power on our side.  The City of Curses is a center, alright, one that cannot hold.

It will break.  Like all things do.

There are those who prey in this town.  The desperate cry out, and we provide for them.  The powerful tread on all of us.  They don't even see it coming.  An army of the desperate, all recruited to slay the man who put himself in charge: the Prince.

I don't know who or what he is.  But when we start our revolution, we'll find a way to finally remove him for the crimes he's orchestrated.
Saldo Witchhand; Tiefling Gangster and Raconteur of the Demon's Orphans

Crux sits at the mouth of the Sleeping Straits, the greatest and largest city of Ith.  But the powerful, the wealthy, the sorcerous, they don't look at those they step on.  No one sees the Monsters lurking down where I walk.

This is a new age, and Crux deserves better.  It deserves a new light to help it out of the old hatreds and lies.  New wonders are coming, from we androids to other dreams being made manifest.  This City of Curses can't hold onto its long evils forever.

The Church once cleansed this place.  We will do it again.  There is a new age coming.  My people herald that, but I know we cannot be the slaves others imagine us to be.  I am an Android and I am a Paladin of the Summer Flame.

I stand against the coming darkness, and I hope for the dawn of a new age.
Oddfellow; Android Paladin of the Summer Rose, and member of the Eagle and the Crows

My people came to this place ten thousand years ago.  We conquered this apa planet, this meager world of rocks and weeds.  Yet Crux never fell to us.

We've been here ever since.  Our people can sense the strong ties this place has to the world around it.  But the apa, they still need to learn.  They dare to create things that poison the air, and make a mockery of life.  We Ursyklon were an elder race that once sailed betwixt the stars.

Its here, in this city of Curses we might be able to make you apa learn to listen.  If not, some of us have other means.

I'll be fair in my warning.  My people's ancient enemy still lurks out there, hidden in the dark and forgotten places.  They will return, those who serve the void between stars.  We Ursyklon remember them.

Don't fear a mysterious Prince or those proud Sorcerous who tread upon the poor.  Fear the ancient monsters who wait for a chance to destroy and blaspheme all we hold dear.
Nalli Eaglesoar; Ursyklon Greenknife

So many secrets!  So many things to behold!  Crux is a ancient city.  Long buried underneath its streets are countless ruins of begotten ages.  The University of Crux stands atop the Skull that so many think of when they first come here.

Crux is jewel to behold, once you look at it from above.  So many from all over the world come to this place, this crossroads to meet, trade and deal with one another.  Cut away the skin, and you can see the corruption rotting so far there is no one to ever cut it out.

It is easy to call someone a monster.  It is even easier to see the Cursed and cast them down.  But we Vampyres know better than that.  Everyone is a Monster here in Crux.

Just wait long enough and you can see them change.  Don't be fooled by the lies and glamour- be smart, and use the intrigues of this place.  Lift yourself up.  So many fall trying to be heroes, its we monsters who've learned to stick together.
Baroness Izzeranna Medama; Vampyre of the Medama Clan and one of the five Blood Barons

The gaijin always claim to know so much, yet they know so little about this place.  This Crux.  For we Tengu, each past life and its memories are clear as glass.  But for the gaijin, they only have half-truths and bad stories.

They think that makes their stories worth knowing.

The City of Curses is known throughout the world, but we came here to serve the Prophet of the Winds.  For her, Crux is key to knowing the path of the world.  We learn the gaijin and their ways.  To learn the secrets of those who remember not.

We and our kind have seen the best and worst of this place.  So many come, and so many are bound by fealties and oaths unseen.  There lurks a unseen Prince, and his will controls this place.  You can always sense it.

We Tengu will watch as others try to unseat him, and always, we laugh.  Our Prophet has never seen him fail, and what she says can never be false.  To the gaijin we laugh, but we warn you.  So many scheme and plot in this place.  Be wary of the shadows.
Ono Ghost-Scorpion; Tengu Scrollkeeper of the Ghost-Scorpion Clan

Crux is my City.  Do not mistake illusions or pretenses for a lack of governance. We will have justice here, no matter the cost.

We tolerate the intrigues, lies and monsters for a greater cause.  We have no obligation to explain ourselves to you.  And in ten thousand years, no one has ever succeeded in taking Crux from us.

Enjoy the illusion.  Beware of the dark.  And always keep your mind open to surprises.
The Prince;