Saturday 12 December 2015

Conchodeus & Zoophoria

There are many gods in the Uncertain World but only two creators. Conceivers and sustainers of reality, those who hold the world together with their thoughts, imbue it with existence and maintain its position in the shadowy multiverse. Without these two, nothing is.


Call the first 'Zoophoria' or 'Tetrautera', but you may as well call Her Lady Day, Lady Mania, Wait-What-Who, The Mother, Queen Genesis, Queen Wideawake, The Dancer, Mistress Murder, Light, Luck, Chaos, Chance or just 'Life'.

She rules light, life, wakefulness and day. (And those really weird dreams that wake you up.) She governs dance, violence and sex. It has been claimed by her prophets that 'she is the only reason anyone around here is getting laid' and she is praised accordingly for this.

She made the form of all living things and is the mother of all monsters. She parties with the sun all night and then kicks it out of her house at dawn, thereby returning light and life to the world.

'Let her not party too long' say her worshippers.

She governs birth, growth, the decay of bodies and the transformation of dead things into new life. So long as there is still flesh on the bones the body belongs to her.

Her home is the forests, the rivers, the sea, anywhere things are living or growing or transforming. She flows endlessly between them, never ceasing in one place for long.

She has outright told her prophets "I'm really not sure what's going on" and is notorious for forgetting things.

Her seasons are Spring and Summer.

Her angels appear as wild-riding amazons and multi-armed omni-gendered eternal-dancers.

Her demons are hairy howling barbarians, biological horrors and a fey Wild Hunt.


If you want a common name, call Him 'Conchodeus', but like Her, He has a thousand other names; The Carapaced Man, He Who Waits, Imperator Rasa, The Silent One, The Carapaced King, The Tired Man, Fate, Night, Sleep, or just 'Death'.

He rules death, sleep, darkness, words and dreams. He governs history, poetry, the Moon, the stars, silence, shadows the wastes and all distant places.

After Zoophoria created the form of living things, Conchodeus decided on their nature.

The Dead are his to watch over and the undead, or active-dead are said to be the dark dream or nightmare of the Carapaced King. All fleshless undead are somehow connected to him.

He watches all bones as they moulder and becomes upset if living scavengers disturb them.

His seasons are Autumn and Winter.

His home is the waste beyond the  waste, the desert outside time. The Dark side of the Moon.

He claims to know all things.

His angels come in the form of knights, insects and weird fetish nuns.

His devils are insects of ice, doomed decayed automata and men of business

Her Temples

Her temples and churches can be found anywhere and everywhere, from the centres of great slums, to treehouse-temples in the hearts of forests, sprawling stone cities and nomadic boat-city cathedrals. They can be eons old or days old.

The visitor can never be sure if there will actually be anyone at home. The transgendered priests of Zoophoria and their various tribes, clans, pilgrims, cliques and hangers-on can up and move in the space of a day. All that is required is for someone reasonably charismatic to claim they had a vision and a temple-culture the size of a small town can be packed up and on the road in a couple of hours. Many of the gigantic temple complexes stand empty and overrun by monkeys for hundreds, or thousands of years, only to be suddenly re-filled overnight as a nomadic congregation comes back on a whim.

Zoophoria ensures that when not in use, her temples and cities are not re-purposed by any business or conquest-minded culture. As soon as people leave, wild animals, monsters and crazed crones creep in. Poisonous flowers, thorny vines and hallucinogenic fungi erupt from the earth and cover the stones.

No profitable business, hierarchal organisation or highly-organised martial culture can meaningfully take root in these areas, they are eaten by tigers, mobbed by baboons, cursed by crones, poisoned by toxic blooms and driven mad by multicoloured spores. Neither is it generally safe for single men to go there.

However, fleeing women and homeless children will often be completely safe, the predators and monkey tribes will overlook them, the spores and poisons will not affect them.

When active her temples are a wild and colourful bricolage full of movement, drumming, flags of torn multicoloured silk, jerry-built pools, fountains and hydrological systems, goats, bees, fresh fruit, odd machines held together by hairy twine, newly-cut wood, dancing schools, martial arts schools, painting, art, 'art' and monkeys.

Monkeys are not sacred to the Lady of Day, no more than all life is, but she thinks they are cool.

As her priests welcome all into Her temples, Zoophoria welcomes all into Her realm. Galzebrub, the great prophet, reports in one of the few commonly accepted direct communications from Her;

"Sure, come over, bring anyone."

The greatest danger for visitors is that she will forget they are there, or why they are there and either leave them wandering for ever or possibly try to fight them, either out of confusion or just for fun.

Zoophoria embodies direct, physical body-oriented violence in all its forms. She is life but she is also murder, predation and consumption.

His Temples

His temples are always hard to find and far away. They are placed on barren islands in shadowy and storm-wracked seas, carved into blue-veined glaciers, on isolated mountain peaks, hung upside-down in deep, deep caves and built as lightning-blasted towers in black featureless plains. Some are lighthouses. Some are lighthouses bordering oceans that no longer exist, that have evaporated or drained away, or that will exist one day after the land is drowned.

It makes no difference to Him, His thoughts pass through deep time and the things he builds are ultra-permanent. Many are so real that they exist in the same place on multiple planes. Some are so real that they are the only still or predictable points in dreams, like pins in flowing fabric, and that it is impossible to dream of the places where they are without also dreaming of the Temple a it is, down to the exact detail.

Wherever they are, you have to go a long way to reach them, and He'd rather you didn't try. Unlike Her, He does not welcome travellers into His realm or into His presence. if you do find your way there you better have a very good excuse.

Within, His temples are always gloomy, quiet and still. If it isn't night outside then it seems like it is. Vast libraries extend into the shadowy distance lit by lamps burning with pale or azure flame. Within them, all knowledge is recorded in some form. The records of dead empires fill the crypts. Silver domes hold lenses and telescopes to read the messages in the night sky. Complex orreries and astral charts are kept.

When his temples are near river or seas, the patterns on the water are carefully observed and analysed. Flow dynamics are sacred to him, waves, ripples, whirlpools, swells and storms of every kind are considered to be his messages. The wrinkling of the sea under moonlight is said to be his script.

One of the few sounds is the clicking of the orreries as they move, or that of the smooth kinetic sculptures of unknown purpose that shift in the slow winds. The floors are all mosaics, some abstract,some metaphorical, some pure encoded information in binary form. There are great cemeteries and catacombs.

The priests of Conchodeus are robed, shapeless, apparently genderless, masked with insect features, organised into complex hierarchies maintained by secret signs and codes. They loom silently and communicate in whispers. Gardens full of pale night-flowering blooms have snails of every kind, ranging from the near-microscopic to the gigantic house-sized mega-snail. Tortoises, Trilobites and all other kinds of shelled creature are present, they are one of the few kinds of living thing sacred to Him more than Her.

His temples are guarded by calm blue-armoured knights, by gigantic insects and by tense fetish nuns. Should they be threatened then they will be further defended by the wrathful and wakened dead.

Her Hell

The hell of Zoophoria is a hive of flesh or a city made from organs and tubes like the inside of in infinite beast. There biological terrors and the Wild Hunt torture and pursue rapists, sex criminals and child abusers.

There is no formal structure, no organisation and no way out. The only hope for the damned is that Zoophoria forgets they are there for a while.

His Hell

The Hell of Conchodeus is organised and hierarchic. Circles of ice and glass in inverted counter-rotating skyscrapers like an abyssal panopticon. There he specialises in the punishment of liars, traitors and corrupt officials, politicians and police officers.

All damned souls are afforded a fair trial. Witnesses to their crimes will be called from the dead, should they still live they will be called in dreams and should you dream that you have been called as witness in a trial it is very dangerous to resist, if you do the angels of Conchodeus may come for you and snatch you away to a witness stand in hell.

Cross examinations are permitted and the damned are afforded the best possible defence.

No-one has ever been found innocent.

Sentences consist of specific formal punishments with set terms and conditions for reincarnation or release. If the damned serve out their time and are allowed to reincarnate it will be under exact terms and conditions. There are certain things they must and must not do, depending on their crimes. Although the soul will be unable to remember this, they will be reminded in dreams and whispered to by snails and insects in the world. Should they break the terms of their release they will be snatched back immediately to hell.

For this reason, almost everyone in the Uncertain World fears the advice of insects, tortoises or snails.


  1. Better than my Scrapatrick fanfic by a mile.

  2. Incredible stuff this.. Although- I'd have thought She would have Spring and Autumn and he would have Summer and Winter. To me Autumn is decay which is hers. The stillness and silence of a summer's day fits Him better I would have thought.

    1. Nah, those are my favourite seasons, I ain't giving them up.