Thursday, June 11, 2015

:: Random Item—Flail of Dōngjì ::

Flail of Dōngjì
by Wm Jay Carter III, 6/11/15

a seraph
Weapon: Flail
Culture: Human
Condition: Cold, Light
Color: Jade
Keyword: Epic

The ancient human temple lays open, devoid of any guards or watchful sentries. Inside, just beyond the forechamber, is a sight that rings true with the words of the epic poem about this place: unmoving, the head of a gargantuan ajagara protrudes into the nave from the roof, jaws wide, fin-like ridges flexing in agitation, encased in feet-thick layers of spiky ice from nose to neck.
At the epicenter of these spikes, piercing the dragon’s eye-ridge with spikes of its own, is the head of a jade flail, the chain and handle of which trail downward as if the weapon were once held by a warrior standing on the ground below that fearsome maw. And there, on the floor of the nave, a monstrous scorch-mark is all that remains of Aippaq, the legendary seraphim warrior. If the tales are true, that is...

Aippaq (“Companion”) was one of the greatest seraphim warriors ever to have lived. From an age before the córean curse, her wings were renowned as blacker than the chill of death. Her tale is well remembered thanks to the writings of the córean poet Akama. In those days, before the Cataclysm, the córeans respected and even admired the seraphim for their capabilities and honor in battle. This is well reflected in Akama’s epic poem about Appaq, called “Maroochy Kyeema” or “Black Swan and Red Burnt Earth.”

The concluding stanzas of the poem describes how Black Swan (Aippaq) had won the respect of a human village when she buried the cavern home of the mighty ajagara known as Red Burnt Earth (Kyeema). In return, the humans called a feast in her honor and gifted her a magical jade flail. The flail bore inside it an angry zephyr, which made the weapon light and swift in combat. In addition, the flail had been enchanted by the village’s elder druid to invoke Dōngjì, the primal spirit of winter. After the ceremony there was feasting for many days and nights.

One night before the celebration was to conclude, however, Red Burnt Earth attacked, evidently having escaped to take vengeance on the humans for their treachery. Black Swan took her jade flail in hand and flew to the heights of the human temple to protect it from the dragon’s fiery onslaught, and there the two locked in a battle the likes of which had never before been witnessed. It concluded when Kyeema proved why she was called Red Scorched Earth, immolating Black Swan almost instantly. Before Black Swan perished, however, she struck a killing blow with the Flail of Dōngjì, slaying the dragon and saving the human village.

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