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  1. While adventurers have set out to find the most beautiful orchid in ancient temple ruins, very little is known about the origins of those ruins yet, et alone about the Celestian natives in general. Juan Alfonso Fontonajo and his companion have discovered a hill somewhere in the highlands of Celestia - and on top of that hill stands an ancient statue of a winged man riding a tiger. What is the history of this statue? Who have the natives of Celestia prayed to in former times? On the neighbouring island of Cascadia temples to the feline gods have already been discovered, deep in the jungles. But what is the connection between the cults and history that have been unveiled on Cascadia to that of Celestia? On Cascadia the Myzectlan still uphold their city as a refuge deep within a mountain vale, protected from the once (and potentially still today) maneating large carnivorous cats. But scientists like Montoya have set up a relationship to the natives of Cascadia, and researched their culture, their history and their doom. This has yet to happen on Celestia. And as the curious eye may or may not see, a native scout is closely watching Fontonajo's expedition already. Will he approve of Fontonajo approaching the strange altar on the hilltop? For now one difference seems to be obvious: While in Cascadia most shrines were hidden deep in the jungles - because of the secret and forbidden nature of the cult especially in its early days - this statue stands highly exposed on top of a hill for everyone to see. So how are the natives of Celestia? Are they like those on Cascadia? Do they emerge from the same ancient civilization, share the same blood and the same culture? Have all of them become primitive huntsmen? Or have they always been? Have they once lived on Cascadia, or vice versa? Or maybe those two peoples are not connected in any way, after all? Only time will tell, and only when scientists and adventurers have made their discoveries, written them down, made the connections between the puzzle pieces - only then will we finally know who and how the natives of Celestia really are - and why. For now it is most obvious that there must have been a religious cult involving large felines, at some point in the past at least. The altar is still in decent but not perfect shape, which may also be a result from the sun shining relentlessly at the rather dry hilltop. But who is the winged rider on the tiger's back? Is the tiger the worshipped one, or is it the humanoid with wings? Does the statue display a real hero, or rather a fictional divine being? What is the relationship between the two? And is it pure coincidence that a jaguar is drinking at the small pond at the foot of the hill? Surely other feline cats have recently been spotted on Celestia. But what is the releation between them and the inhabitants of the islands? An incident happened with a white tiger which was recently discovered and then killed shortly after. But are there also deep hostilities between the natives and the felines? Would the felines even attack wandering Halosians? Not even that is known yet. Only one thing seems certain for now: That Juan Alfonso Fontonajo and his company will continue their exploration of Celestia. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thanks a lot to @Ayrlego, @Lord Buckethead and @Bregir for your support and feedback during the construction of this MOC. I am happy to have the chance of exploring Celestia with you - and hopefully soon some others as well. The island and its natives bear some great potential which we have the great chance to develop together. The general colourscheme with lots of olive green, mixed with some dark green, has been inspired by @Gideon's fantastic entry to category C of the most recent challenge. The orchid is a copy of that from @Kai NRG's delayed yet wonderful entry to the challenge. Looking forward to all other MOCs for the Celestian Natives. :-) --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  2. This is Dearji the Windsong. Dearji is one of the Truachesh neh Triuri (People of the Triple Goddess), and a citizen of Eslandola. She has just been ordained by the Crahaish neh Triuri (Ministry of the Triple Goddess) as a Wandering Acolyte. Her mission is to spread the faith through story and song. ------------------------------ About the Truachesh neh Triuri (Truachesh for short): Where? Approximately three days ride from the center of the Corrington/Eslandola border is Dun neh Saogh (Hill of Worlds), the holiest of holy sites for the Truachesh. The last remnants of this ancient culture lie in the fertile farmlands to the east of Dun neh Saogh. A view of Dun neh Saogh, as seen from the south-southwest. (More images can be found here.) Dun ne Saogh, the grain silo to the southwest, the uisge (whiskey) distillery to the northwest, and the Owan Tree east of the main cavern entrance are controlled by the Crahaish neh Triuri. Faith? (large block of text, important but you can read it later) Dun neh Saogh The hill is the most holy of places to the Truachesh, or more accurately the caverns within it. It is beleived that the caverns, carved with innumerable lines of Cymgrii script, connect this world to all the other planes of existence. On the solstices the Truachesh practice their other worlds experience rituals by first drinking uisge (whiskey) strained through a rare mushroom found in the caves, and then dancing to a specific drumbeat. This is believed to create a heightened state of consciousness that will allow one to see into the other planes of existence. A person of pure faith may even physically traverse the planes of existence through the caves in this state. The Owan Tree More than a thousand years ago a strange man from a far land came, he called himself Owan. He planted a strange purple fruit near Dun neh Saogh, watered it, and then promptly died on the spot. There grew a purple fruit bearing tree. The fruit of this tree was found to keep the men who ate it aroused for hours, even after spilling their seed, And that seed would be highly potent. It was decreed by the Crahaish that the fruit will only be eaten at the fertility celebrations on the equinoxes. To ensure this, the Owan tree is guarded and maintained only by ordained priestesses. There have been attempts to reproduce this tree (some with stolen fruit). While the trees grown from the fruit of the Owan Tree do bear their own fruit, none has had fruit that has the same effect. There is some belief that the death of Owan may have given the tree the power of virility. ------------------------------- Recent History Before the Mardeirian Intervention the Truachesh lands were a part of Corrington. At the time, the Corrington crown saw the Truachesh as little more than barbarians, to be taxed like foreigners. The Truachesh chose to hide rather that resist the Mardierian advance, many taking refuge in Dun neh Saogh. The Truachesh had barely acknowledged the Mardierian government before it's fall and the founding of Eslandola. The new government's more lax policies have allowed the Truachesh to flourish and grow at thier own pace. Truachesh life today Most of the Truachesh neh Triuri live an agrarian lifestyle, but they don't eschew modern conveniences and knowledge. Most homes are oriented to magnetic north using compasses. They have little use for currency, operating mostly on a barter system and usually paying taxes in crops and livestock. The Truachesh neh Triuri are mostly a female dominant culture, but men do hold positions of power. The Crahaish, though they prefer the governance style of Eslandola, still hold respect for the Corrington crown, especially the current Queen. Today many of the Crahaish will offer a blessing for Queen Annetta when they encounter Corlanders. Upon learning of her corronation, the High Priestesses gifted her with a masterwork tapestry depicting the Consort's fertilization of the Triuri's womb. It was tightly rolled, and those delivering it were instructed to only unroll it in the Queen's presence. It caused such a stir that the tapestry was promptly rerolled and stored in the royal treasury. In this new era of exploration, a badric revival of the Crahaish has begun. The High Priestesses have reinstituted the title of Wandering Acolyte, and many young vocally talented priestesses and priests are heading out into the wide beyond. ------------------------------------------------------- Today's story: Dearji the Windsong finds herself for the first time on a ship out to sea. The trade ship Captain Daffyd "Splattersquawk" Prows, who as a Truachesh boy of thirteen went off to sea, still held his faith in the Triuri. Captain Prows was glad to be her ferryman as Dearji spread the faith. The blessing and protection from sea beasts she brings to the Dark Narwhal and her crew is enough payment to the captain's mind. ------------------------------- Captain Prows was finally able, after a hard morning, to take his midday meal in his cabin. The cook had finally managed to make a good shark meat pie, and Daffyd wanted to savor it. Not three bites in, though, he felt something wrong with the ship. A quick glance at the compass, and the captain knew they were off course. With his compass in one hand, and cutlass (for gesturing effect) in the other, Daffyd rushed up to the top of the sterncastle. Another look at his compass, to be sure of the proper bearings, gave him the confidence to shout, "Starboard you idiots. Thirty-two degrees starboard, now!" Down at the wheel, crewman Potts was pushed aside by First Mate Tolan duBroise, who efficiently set the course. As the Dark Narwhal listed slightly with the hard turn her sails were able to catch more of the wind. "Keep us on this course for two hours," Captain Prows called down, "Then bring us back to port seventeen degrees." While he was attending to righting their course, the captain didn't notice the cabin boy, Frink, come up behind him. "I made ye sumthin', Cap'n," the boy exclaimed. Frink has carved a fish out of some driftwood for the captain. -------------------------------------------------------- Later the captain returned to the helm, and First Mate Tolan was able to spend some time atop the sterncastle with Dearji. Dearji is singing of the Triuri mating with the Consort, in the old tongue. Even to those who couldn't understand the song, her voice was clear and pleasing. -------------------------------------------------------- Dearji isn't the only passenger on this voyage. A Corrington 'Political Officer', Byron Messuir, is on his way to Terreli to settle an important 'legal matter.' The odd thing is that while the Dark Narwhal does make berth in both Belson and Terreli, this voyage she will be making numerous trading stops along the Eslandola coast. If the 'legal matter' were truly important 'Officer' Messuir should have gotten passage on a ship bound directly for Terreli. Dearji passed Byron as she left the sterncastle for the galley. Frink had called up to tell her that the cook had finally agreed to let her bless his crockery. Even though most of the crew didn't share her faith, all but the cook has asked for a blessing on the tools of their trade. Today the cook has finally bowed to the pressure from his mates. ------------------------------------------------------------- About Captain Daffyd "Splattersquawk" Prows: (Lots of text, but a good read.) -------------------------------------- First Mate Tolan duBroise: Tolan duBroise was once a Corlander who's family was well liked at court. In some way (he's not telling how) Tolan ran afoul of one of the Fraternities of Science. To avoid a major incident, he was asked to leave by the Queen herself. Tolan is quick witted, and joyous in much of what he does. From his time at the Corrington court, he has great skill with a rapier and is well versed in the navigational sciences. But his time on the Dark Narwhal has forged him anew. Tolan is quite fervent in his new faith in the Triuri. When Dearji came aboard, Tolan promptly offered his private bunk, adjacent to the Captain's study, for her use. (This is the only image I could get to show the detailing under the windows.) Dearji has enjoyed her time with Tolan, and is considering bedding him. After they make port, of course, because she is running low on supplies to make pregnancy prevention potion. --------------------------------- About the Dark Narwhal: She began as a moderately sized caravel, but has been customized to suit Captain Prows' tastes. The sterncastle was increased in height and width to counterbalance a giant brass spiral horn that was added as a bowsprit. A fourth sail was rigged to the new bowsprit. She has only two long guns mounted near the bow, one port, one starboard. She has four small guns on swivel points, also split port and starboard, in line from the long guns. Most of the wood of the Dark Narwhal has been stained black. Along most of the railings are brass and pyrite (fools gold) details. Captain Prows has chosen not to fly the Eslandola standard on his main mast, but instead flies a small tapestry with an image of Dun neh Saogh to proclaim his faith. To comply with the laws of Eslandola, Captain Prows had a wood and gold approximation of the common Eslandola flag placed prominently on the sterncastle. The Letter of Marque plaque found its place under the 'flag' nearly a year later. ----------------------------------------- That's all. Thank you for your patience in waiting for me to finish.
  3. goatman461

    [SoNE Ep. 7] War Hammer

    When all seems to be lost, ISB Agent Goatm An 46-1 dives into action. Lord Tyrus fires furiously into the overwhelming Rebel forces to provide cover fire. Officer VeR is in position to take out the Rebel's main weapon. As he blindly leaps over the edge of the icy gorge, Goatm quickly assesses the situation below... A Rebel officer presents an obvious target, but Goatm will need to save his blaster for the Rebels outside of his hammer's reach. The taun taun mounted Rebel will need to be removed from a distance, the gorge is too tight to outmaneuver the beast. Officer VeR still hasn't taken out the cannon; this could be a problem... Past scene... Goatm's favorite blood-stained hammer has been with him from the very beginning on Naboo, his families adopted planet. Goatm's father, Kalib Ritter von An had fled to Naboo with Goatm's mother when her father refused their marriage. She was royalty and he a lowly knight with a dubious past. On Naboo, Kalib joined the Naboo Royal Space Fighter Corps and worked as a carpenter. He regularly grumbled about the royalist system, managed economy, and interventionist politics of the Naboo elites. As Goatm grew older, he apprenticed under his father and was soon trusted with the sale and delivery of his father's creations. Goatm's father was too hard-nosed to politely deal with the entitled customers who desired his products, but Goatm had a humble tact with the clients that proved very useful to the family's prosperity. This continued on into Goatm's teenage years, until the Separatist invasion in 32 BBY. Kalib was quite sympathetic to the Separatist cause until the Trade Federation blockade. Despite being a former knight and volunteer pilot, Kalib An was a stanch believer in the non-aggression principle. While these Separatists should be free to leave the Republic, they had no right to enforce a blockade. Kalib prepared his family for the worse. Their home was already on the edge of a large conservation zone and Kalib had secured a tunnel exiting there. This was done early on in case the family had been found by Goatm's vengeful grandfather. On the day of the invasion, Goatm was sent into town to purchase more supplies with the remaining currency and wares the family had. Few on Naboo took the blockade seriously and Kalib's furniture sold at a premium because of the lack of off-world competition. Goatm hurried home as the invasion began. His mother and sister would already be into the tunnel and Kalib would be heading for his N-1 to fight back the invaders. Kalib didn't make it to his starfighter. Their home was swarming with droids. Apparently the Naboo government had been collecting records on its citizens for a long time and the data was not as secure as the bureaucrats thought. Kalib was quickly identified and targeted as a possible threat to the droid occupation. Goatm rushed in to see Kalib dying in front of their home; hammer in one hand. His father couldn't speak. He just bled out and died. Goatm would go on to lead a cell in the Naboo Resistance, tracking down collaborators and dispatching them with extreme brutality, often with his father's hammer. Goatm's mother and sister shunned Goatm for what he had become and once the occupation was over, they returned to his grandfather's court and Goatm embarked for new adventures in the Outer Rim. The story continues... Rescue Mission by Commander Beltar Med Evac by goatman461 1/5/15 Edited to include links and bonus pic showing the collaboration with BEAVeR.
  4. Yesterday I posted to flickr this creation of mine influenced by Buddhist and in turn Hindu art. Specifically the statue is meant to represent a bodhisattva like Ksitigarbha and Avalokitesvara. Each of the ritual objects held by the bodhisattva's many arms has a religious significance: the bell to punctuate the recitation of mantras, the staff with jingling rings to announce the coming of a traveler, the trident to represent the three jewels and three poisons of Buddhist philosophy, the axe to symbolically behead ignorance (one of the poisons), and the round orange vessel is meant to represent a wish-fulfilling jewel or cintamani. Click the image for a link to the flickr photo page. I feel bad posting these other things because some are almost a year old, but I'm not sure that new topics would be appropriate either. Anyhow, I exhibited this model at Brickfair VA last year and it's based on the library on the Island of Myst that sets the adventure puzzle game Myst and appears in some of its sequels. These boats I also assembled for the con as my small contribution to last year's Apocalug cyber city. The one in the middle is based on the airboat from the episode "Ganymede Elegy" of the anime Cowboy Bebop. Finally, the oldest model I never posted here isn't very refined as I built it only to photograph for the banner of a flickr group, but I think some of you may appreciate it. It's designed after a meeting house or wharenui used by the Maori people of New Zealand. Once again I have linked the image to its flickr page. Thanks for looking through all these, Nathan
  5. inquisitor88

    MOC: Anubis (another one :) )

    Hello! Another MOC that was made specially for Russian contest 16*16: Character. Anubis by inquisitor88, on Flickr Front view by inquisitor88, on Flickr Left view by inquisitor88, on Flickr Right view by inquisitor88, on Flickr Back view by inquisitor88, on Flickr Secondary view by inquisitor88, on Flickr Full Album with high resolution photos https://www.flickr.c...157644072828416 Hope You like him,Thanks!