Friday, 4 September 2020

Transcript of THE GRONFERENCE

 In the latter days of the world 'Ir', the rulers of the Great Glorious Gronnate put forth a call for the greatest minds of each nation to attend a great GRONFERENCE in which they would combine their seperate knowledge about the forces threatening Ir as a whole.
This is a record of that GRONFERENCE


(All dialogue by the various 'players')


...........................


Gron Maximal ((secondary)Gronnate); “OK. IT IS I GRON MAXIMAL, WHOSE EYES ARE HOLES STRAIGHT TO HELL, (via Gron Secondary). GRON MAXIMAL IS UNAVAILABLE DUE TO DERUSTING.”
 ANYWAYS. GRONFERENCE WILL START ON 3RD GRONUARY (MARCH) 6TH.
 
TWO DELEGATES CAN SIGN UP FOR THE 6TH. 3 (WOW) FOR THE 7TH. AND 2 FOR THE 8TH.
 
EACH DELEGATE IS TO DELIVER THEIR PAPER AT THEIR EARLIEST CONVENIENFE ON THEIR RESPECTIVE DAY. THEY WILL THEN BE BADGERED WITH QUESTIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE. THANK YOU.
 
ON THE 9TH GRON MAXIMAL WILL DELIVER SHOCKING REVELATION (HOTLY ANTICIPATED). QUESTIONS MAY BE ANSWERED. ENJOY.
 
OK SIGN UP HAVE FUN LOVE YOU KISSES (ANYONE NOT PRESENTING A PAPER WILL BE BARRED FROM THE CONFERENCE AND SUBJECT TO INTERNATIONAL RIDICULE)
 
GRON MAXIMAL (via Gron Secondary)”
 


 

Gronference, Day One

 
..
 

 

 
Gron Maximal ((secondary)Gronnate); “I GUESS GRONFERENCE IS CANCELLED DUE TO LACK OF INTEREST???? SHAME NO ONE IS GETTING IN ON THESE SHOCKING REVELATIONS”
 
 
FUCK ME AND THE GRON I RODE IN ON I GUESS”
 
 
The delegate from Ulukaa fidgets with his skullcap.
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); "We actually have two papers in preparation, but somehow the Vizier responsible for announcing them has not yet given clearance to present the findings. Nonetheless, we should like to present titles: "On the Psychofauna of the Western Optimate" and "White Apes, threat or menace?"
 
Gron Maximal ((secondary)Gronnate); “THIS IS ACCEPTABLE IF YOU WISH TO PICK A DATE?
 
I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT'S HAPPENING WITH THIS THING SO….”
 
 
The Ulukan delegate seems uncertain of the format but is too embarrassed to actually ask any questions. His lizardman grabs the loudhailer.
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Lizardman,(Ulukaa)); "How this work? Is phone chat or text or what? Maybe if is text, terse paper is best?"
 
 
Gentleman Scholar and Low-Level Addict Uxlorian Vesh stumbles onto the stage and knocks over a stand before grabbing the podium for stability - their eyes AFLAME.
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "Gentlethings and people of Ir
our simple subaqueous globe
or possibly bendy interdimensional megastructure floating in the cosmic fluid..
for only the Optimate truly knows
I stand before you today
today...."
 
Vesh's eyes become distant as he enters some kind of fugue state
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "THE APES
PALE AND MONSTEROUS
THE TUNNELS
ahem
I stand before you today, a being transformed by that simple benediction so long denied to the peoples of Ir by the missing TYRANT who once ruled our globe (or megastructure)
 
the gift of TRAVEL
 
for I, and I ALONE, dared, in the dying months of the two thousand and nineteenth year of the closing to penetrate the false boundaries of our imprisoned world and to step within those Holy Lands once placed in total service to our world-ruler
 
what I saw there, I shall now recount
The Lands of the Optimate are truly strange
more akin to a Great Parkland than any natural landscape
(but is any of Ir truly natural? Think on it...)
a place designed
built
shaped by one titanic will, to whims unknown to mortal minds
a parkland,
a FALSE wilderness
winding roads, manufactured hills, backwards streams
(I'm not sure it they were real)
I will be frank, I witenssed, sorry, witnessed much of what I saw in a severe stake of Akhwei withdrawl –
 
I am not a man of details
I am an artist, an explorer
a synthesiser of knowledge
not some petty grubber in the MINES of MENDACITY
I will say this frankly - CERAMIC WOMEN
deadly creatures, though polite enough
autmomata, I think, these were the right hand of the optimate
and in our Rulers disappearance, I believe they stand still closest to the optimates will
they gather in the island city of Portal
guarding its empty colonnades -
 
other servants had that Global Tyrant
Golden Folk, most beautiful, and extremely dull, and quite clingy really
and kinda boring really
 
APES
monsterous, white, ssome near hairless
technilocgists
I'm sorry"
 
Vesh pauses for another drink of what is almost certainly not water
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "tech-nol-ohh-jists
moving like ghosts in the night
hiding
hiding hiding hiding
moving through secret ways
managing the great MACHINE that is our world
how deep does it go?
what is real and what is not?"
.
Vesh
.
Waits.
.
Staring
.
at
.
the
.
Audience
 
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "SO!
NONE of you dare guess?
I have seen the horrid factories of the Apes
and I have been within Portal
I have crept through the Empty Palace!
Bare!
I tell you know you fools - cosmic order is awry!
A great Wrongness approaches!
What could cause the Optimate to leave?
Not even to die, but to disappear?
I am certain that - while the rulers of this world brawl with each other for sad flecks of territory and prescidence
 
SOMETHING is coming
For I have seen a Grey Waste
and the Pale Courts
and a Thing which moves like grey and broken glass
And I do believe that this world and everything on it, and all of our cultures, and our VERY LIVES
are nothing more than a lifeboat
or less
 
bugs
bugs clinging to a leaf as it falls
This is Ir you fools!
You fooooools!"
 

..... Vesh now breaks down laughing, and/or possibly crying...

 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "I am available for questions" (whispered)
 
 
The gentleman from Xingando stands.

 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Now would you say it is indeed true that the Optimate is, as has been observed by a number of intellectuals, a simulation?"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "I am certain, and will state clearly here and now
either everything around us is a simulation
or nothing is
or possibly some things are
but its one of the first two I'm CERTAIN
we only need work out which one
BUT
Sir
I think it highly likely that the OPTIMATE
is no more or less a simulation than YOU Yourself!
Are YOU a simulation sir??
I mean really, are you?"
 
 
Léon Masque appears to do nothing for several moments.
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Ah sorry, I was wagging my eyebrows under my mask.
 
I am not entirely convinced of that fact myself! But stands to reason that we are all, in fact, Temporarily"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "Nothing could be more clear in my mind than your statement honoured member from Xingando
I must ask you though...
 
Is it possible for me to open a loan with your state bank?
 
My credit is not what it might be.."
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "I'm sure one of my people can make a deal with you. I of course am independently wealthy and keep all my money in offshore accounts so am not up to date with these things."
 

The delegate from Ulukaa stands:

 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “Ulukaa can supply the great Uxlorian Vesh with any amount of Akhwei they require.”
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "I agree completely with that policy!"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  “Might we learn more of these tunnels? Originating where, and leading to where?”
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??));  "By all means..
I am no technical expert
but if we turn out attention to this map of Ir..
which someone has allowed to fall over, my apologies
but if we examine this Island between the northern and southern Optimate
bordered by what we would call, the Pale Pass and the Grasping Pass
I do believe that this is the centre of the Optimates technical or material power
(though not its administrative centre)
I suspect that this island dominates the tunnel network
and is the core of the REALM OF THE WHITE APES"
 
 
An aide whispers to Masque who then stands back up.

 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "This delegate would thank you to please refer to the Golden Isle by its current, correct name. And yes that is quite shocking. Can we be sure these times are quite real?"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "It is entirely possible that we are nothing more than dreams conjured within the minds of deluded and decadent aesthetes from some higher dimensional plane..
but if that were the case

would it actually change anything you choose to do?"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  “Ulukaa would like to know more of the Thing Like Broken Glass. Where it is now, when and where we might expect it to reveal itself. Thank you.”
 
Oh, and what it wants. Thank you I’ll sit now.”
 
 
(Vesh has been drinking consistently and now seems dangerously inebriated)

 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??));  "ENTROPY - has a FACE
folding out of terrible dimensions, Blind Palaces, white wombs like inexpressible pits; voids in Nothing itself!
a screaming, white noise across the sky and
EARTH
mountains crack open from within, oozing structure like pus, curdling into revetments and porticos, doors yawning open, spilling forth the sound of blindness and the pennants of the deaf!
Even as she coils to crush it, it decays, and her grip slips
God-Killer, Destroyer of Thought. First, greatest, and mother of all Entropic Wyrms....
the wyrms...."

 
Vesh now seems unconscious
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  “Ulukaa requests permission to tend to Delegate Vesh and wishes to point out that whatever condition they appear to be suffering from, it was not caused by Akhwei or any of its derivatives.”
 
 
Gron Maximal ((secondary)Gronnate); “NO TAMPERING WITH HERALDS THANK YOU”
 
 
Masque has shuffled away a large folder prints with HYDRALOOP in multiple places.

 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "One thing can be certain, no one here in this room has built any tunnels underminig territory that has previously been called the Optimate..."
 
 
Gron Maximal ((secondary)Gronnate); “THE GRONNATE SHALL HERETOFORE BE REPRESENTED VIA LIEUTENANT-SCHOLAR ROROM, SEEN HERE SNIVVELING AND SOMEWHAT LAVENDER IN COLOR IF NOT OF SCENT AND DEFINITELT QUITE MUSCULAR UNDER HIS MANY MANY ROBES, SERIOUSLY”

 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivveling)); "Nnnnngggghhhh wellllll this is uh, great um, thank you scholar Vesh for that errr,,, well we've started a little early, all by the grace of Gron, naturally, yes, thank you...... Any qu-questions? Ah, oh, okay, those have started too, why not."
 
Hmmmm I have a question,,,, for the unsconscious man, hmmmm maybe someone can wake him up?? Well he's a herald, we mustn't tamper with him, but still, maybe some Gronning water, yes...... And live lamb, those refresh the spirits.... Well anyway it's more of a comment, errr,,,, my master GrON MaXImAL, may we all quaver in the sheen of his countenance, as it were, wishes it be expressed that we all, if you follow, perhaps the gentlemen could elaborate upon the nature, of this, ahem, face.... Well I suppose that was a question, hmm, after all. Is he awake?"

 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??));   "ak..
wie..."
:

Vesh appears to be drooling and semi-conscious
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); I guess, haha, the gentleman from Ulukaa, could, gosh, we'll have some guards watch, actually just do it right up there, right at the lectern, if the gentleman could Ulukaa could fetch, since it was requested, the, ah, Ackwee, was it??? Certainly we've none of that here in the Gronnate, I'm sure Wall School is making sure of that, haha!... Well dose the man and let's get on with this, we've all got beheadings and such to attend I'm sure,,,'
 
 
 
The Ulukan delegate approaches cautiously and administers Akhwei in smoke form, blowing it up Vesh's nose with a little squeezy rubber syringe

 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); "This never happens. There must be some interaction with another substance they've been taking."
 
 
Cups of curdled milk are passed around to the delegates by way of refreshment while they wait
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "I live
Academia
knowledge
questions
what face?"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  "Welcome back. Keep the syringe."
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "the, ah,, to wit , face of,, entropy?""
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "I'm back ladies and gents!"

 
says Masque apropos of nothing
 
 
The Ulukan ambassador offers Masque a syringe, too.
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "mmmmmm-maybe n,no"
maybe don't do that, here
(sorry)"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "A wyrm
a being beyond causality
enemy of all that is
enemy of thought and identity
this world little more than a bounded fortress on the borders of a fallen land
HE KNEW
and HE FLED
SHE comes!"
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "I'm not sure we can include speculations about its gender in the conference proceedings, but hmm, okay, that's uh....
 
well, so, do you know, is it capable of fear, or maybe love??
 
and, if not, what is its weak spot?"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "Fear is ash. Love is ash.
That which consumes Time itself can have no weakness
except perhaps the structure of Reality itself"
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "I'm not sure we quite, hmmm, appreciate, the gentleman's, err, pessimism, but thank him for his comments. I suppose we shall keep the floor open for a while, in case anyone else shows up, it being a bit early, still, and all, but what if...? Hmm, maybe the gentleman from Ulukaa can present next, once the question period has ended, and we can sit silently and drink our milk until then, and enjoy the live dog fight that the University has so generously organized in this very room and which, as I'm sure you all noted, has already been going on for about half an hour,,"
 
 
Uxlorian Vesh (Unaligned, (Herald??)); "I bet on .. the quick dog..."
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "oh, ummm, and I've been asked to inform you all that, yes, the house is taking bets and can fill you in on the fighting histories of all our dogs, over there by the pile of spears....
 
ah, and, just hearing now, thank you, that the GronU Department of Vice is offering tours of its facilities for the duration of the Gronference, for a nominal fee, of course"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  “Ulukaa will be able to deliver its report tomorrow, pending the release of information rights from the Embassy. In the meantime, we suggest the Ulukan delegate monitor delegate Vesh for safety. No contact is required, no tampering! But since we are not sure what else delegate Vesh may have ingested, we should feel remiss if we did not take care of them.”




 

Gronference: Day Two

 
 
The delegate from Ulukaa ascends a small dais next to the podium. His lizardman arranges a set of paintings and remarkably finely carved wooden figures in tableaux to either side, before reclining in a languid and slightly officious pose at the delegate’s feet.

 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “We shall keep Our observations short and to the point.”
 

As he starts talking, the lizardman points to the paintings, which are clearly meant to illustrate the speech, and puppets the wooden figures into strange, stilted groupings, the meaning of which is less clear. Whenever, eg.  Violence is mentioned, all the figures are placed upside-down and on the same level.
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “First: we have identified four groups that are being terrorized by the White Apes: Golden Persons, various Animal-Persons"

the lizardman arches an eyebrow 

"Ceramic Persons, and for want of a better name, Ancient or Thawed Persons. Of these we have interviewed some Animal- and Thawed Persons, who uniformly remember nothing before Oct. We propose that they may all have been brought to life or out of suspended animation or similar in Oct or Sep. Some Thawed call themselves “Cryo.” They appear to include natives of all the known lands of Ir.
 
Second, the White Apes seem bent on eliminating all these persons but we have discerned no other motivation among them. They pilot metal boats and fight with fire weapons, so fighting them with wooden navies seems ill-advised. We would like to hear from Kanibalo about how their metal ships might perform.
 
Third, we have discovered some medicinal properties among the secretions of the Optimate inhabitants. These are being investigated. They suggest that the inhabitants of the Optimate may have been... cultivated or selectively bred for some specific purposes.
 
 
Proposed next steps: we should like to mount a joint and cooperative expedition to the Isle described by delegate Vesh, by assembling an international team, with each nation sending a single researcher and their retinue. the lizardman holds up a placard that reads: 1 pt. These researchers would work together, pooling their resources without precedence among them, making all important decisions by council vote. All intelligence gathered would be freely and equally shared among the participating nations. If any are interested in participating, please sign up afterward.”


 
The lizardman makes the sign for violence, then flips the figures right-side-up and bares a wide double-row of fangs while staring intently. At a sign from the delegate, he crinkles his eyes half-shut, and the expression suddenly looks a little like a smile.
 
 

Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Will the delegates from Ulukaa be taking questions at this time?"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “Throughout the day, as we recuperate on our naugahide couches. It may take some time for us to process the questions through our naugasmoke, however.”
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "w-well,,, technically all d-delegates are r-re-e-equired to take questions. Haha, thank you, academic honesty and all that...,,,,..,., Oh! Hmm, M-Maximal, blessed he, of course, I piss myself at the thought, as is proper, he's reviewing my notes and shall address, ah, his questions through me, once he is ready.....
 
i-in the meantime, the doctoral cohort at the department of Aeronautics and Catapults, oho, will bless us with its presence.... ah, we only give out one doctorate per year, Yes, they're all defending their theses, right here before us, by combat, you see as is our custom.... The house is taking bets, of course,,"
 
 

Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "I, for one, will put 20 on the short guy.
 
To the gentleman...gentlepersons? from Ulukaa, may I ask, how do these 'thawed' people seem to you? Are they even real people? If no one there can remember anything before Oct wouldn't you say that lends credence to the idea (that everyone seems to be talking about) that Ir is in fact a simulation?"


 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “It is certainly an interesting hypothesis. We have... I don’t want to go too deeply into our methods, but we have tried to help them uncover their memories and their lack of detail seems suggestive - perhaps of a simulation, but also... it seems deliberate. Others who have lost their memories, if you lead them with questions, they make things up, they’re often suggestible. Not these Thawed. They say they do not know, and there they stop.”
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "how does... Mmmmm, the delegate from... From Ulukaa, p-propose, aha, to enlist in this, ah, joint venture, those nations who have, in the words of Maximal, sHOWN ThE UtTER WEAknEsS of GRON, to deign, as it were, not to attend this congress?"
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “I think we just make them jealous with our Ir-shattering achievements when we return.
 
If hardly anyone possesses the acorns to participate, then I suppose we happy few may have to double our ventures.
 
To whit, two researchers each (with entourage).”
 
 
The delegate from Ulukaa folds his hands and rests his chin on them. His lizardman starts to enfold him in petals of crimson gauze.
 


 

Gonference, Day THREE

 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "issss,, mmmmm, would anyone like to present today?"
 
 
A graduate student carefully carries a small, yellowed skeleton up to the podium and props it there.  A lit pipe sits wedged in the pipe facets in the skeleton’s teeth.  One of the provosts gestures frantically at a no smoking sign, but is ignored.
 
Slowly, cautiously, the skeleton begins to move.  It is shaking with the effort of standing upright.
 
 
Prof. Antef (Mourgelands, (Deceased)) “Good morning,”
 
 
It says, with a voice like the creaking of rafters.  Slowly it rotates its head from right to left, its empty sockets surveying the room.  It pauses for dramatic effect.
 
 
Prof. Antef (Mourgelands, (Deceased)); “The Optimate - the mysterious and powerful civilization that rules our world.  Where did they come from?  What do they want?  Why have they used their powerful magic to separate our nations?  These questions have puzzled the scholars of Ir for hundreds of years, but they have never been answered.  Until today!
 
In this lecture I will lay out a remarkable theory: that the Optimate is not a native faction to Ir, but rather comes from beyond.  In fact, new archaeological evidence suggests that the Optimate came to Ir thousands of years ago as a conquering force.  Let us begin with an analysis of rock layers sampled from the Tuthmaness canyon in the northern Morguelands.”
 
 
A slide projector crackles to life.  Layers of rocks are discussed, as are tree rings, stone tools, and weevil-eaten manuscripts.
 
 
Prof. Antef (Mourgelands, (Deceased)) “And in conclusion, there is much further work to be done to explore these novel results—
 
--I’m sorry, I am not feeling well.  I--”
 
 
The skeleton’s head slumps onto the podium.
 
After a few second of silence, a graduate student rushes up to the stage to check on it.  The student is knocked to the floor by invisible force.  The skull rises up into the air, dragging the limp skeleton along with it.  From inside the skull, a glow becomes apparent.  A violet flame engulfs it.  It is too bright to look at directly.  The smell of burning bone and old tobacco fills the air.  A different voice speaks, cavernous and melodic, like a pipe organ.
 
 
Possessing Delegate (Extra-Planar, (Un-Invited)); “THESE ARE THE LATTER DAYS.  THE GREAT SERPENT APPROACHES TO SWALLOW THE SUN.  ALL THE VANITIES OF IR WILL BE UNMADE.  IN ITS BELLY YOU WILL ROT UNTIL YOU NEVER WERE.  THEY TRIED TO HIDE YOU.  THEY TRIED TO SAVE YOU.  BUT YOU HAVE BEEN FOUND.  THE DOOR THAT WAS CLOSED SHALL OPEN ONE FINAL TIME.  YOU WHO FATTED IR TO FAT YOURSELVES; YOU ARE FATTED FOR THE WYRM.”
 
 
The violet flame goes out.  The blackened, smoking skull crashes down on the podium and cracks in two.  The room is silent except for the hum of the slide projector.
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Well whatever people say about these dead guys, they sure know how to put on a show!"
 
 
Léon Masque stands to applaud vigorously for a few seconds before an aide tugs his sleeve and gestures at the silent room.
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Oh huh. Well uh will the delegate be taking questions?"
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "(theywillbetodootherwisewouldbeungronly)"
 
 
A break for lunch is called, during which grad students from the archaeology department frantically attempt to restore the skull.  They do... fine.  You can see the epoxy.  Some parts are now plaster, which has mostly set.  For the question session the skull, sitting in a box with cotton packing while the glue dries, is passed around to the other delegates.
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "M-max-MAXIMaL would like to know, hmmmm, whether the, ah, Wyrm has shown a propensity for being tamed or enslaved"
 
 
Prof. Antef (Mourgelands, (Deceased, (Repaired))); "Worm?  Oh, you are interested in worms?"
 
 
It is the creaking rafter voice again. 
 
 
Prof. Antef (Mourgelands, (Deceased, (Repaired)));)); "Yes, I did not have time for those slides today, but I do think that changes in the length of earthworms over geological timescales support my theory of extraplanar invasion in the distant past."
 
 
(The delegate from Ulukaa had to be excused today after the skull’s pronouncement because he had a raised eyebrow that lasted more than 4 hours.)
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "w-w-w-w-welllll we would like to apologize for the,, ah, Delay, in the proceedings, haha!... Hmmmm, GrON MAximal was in, ah, a bit of a temper, as it were, as such things go, yes... So, anyway, uhhhhh, p-p-perhaps the g-g-gentleman from Xingando would like to present next??"
 
 
Léon Masque's gaggle of hangers-on assemble behind the podium, each holding up what looks like a ladder covered in stained glass. As he speaks they adjust various alchemical settings and the panes change colors before your very eyes.
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Good members of GRONFERENCE 2020, I give you my findings!
 
FIRSTLY:
 
With the knowledge, common in Xingando, of this world's true SUBSTANCE being mutable under certain conditions (commonly, "Law of Equivalent Exchange),



 
SECONDLY:
 
With knowledge of NEW changes brought about contemporaneously with the Disappearance Of The Optimate,
 
FIRST CONJECTURE:
 
The Optimate themself has been exchanged for a collection of Apes, automata, and various awakened people, else-




 
SECOND CONJECTURE:
There is an exchange having taken place between Ir's SUBSTANCE and another,



 
COROLLARY:
There exists other SUBSTANCES,



 
FURTHER:
There exists other worlds


beyond IR,
 
CONCLUSION:
There are yet WORLDS to conquer



 
Ladies! Gentlemen! Esteemed ossified professors! Our great nations are currently squabbling over the Optimate's leavings! His scraps! His unflushed toilet!
 
These apes and cry-o peoples have appeared from tunnel systems beneath Ir. This is clearly because their home world, home Substance reside beneath!



 
PROPOSAL:
Fabricate a PHOENIX to delve the insubstantial layers beyond



 
Test its transport capabilities. Paying tourists will of course be welcome



 
This is all a first step to the ultimate goal: create a extra-Irial colony



 
I will now be taking questions."
 
 
Ulukaan Delegate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); “Where do you intend to insert your phoenix?”
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "We can discuss Phoenix insertion methods privately, but suffice to say it will be satisfactory to all involved."
 
 
Ulukaan Delegate (Human(?),(Ulukaa));  “Is it your contention then that the Apes are not part of the Optimate proper, but instead.... change left over from some transaction?”
 
We mean, could we return them?”
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "Let me see here... Yes there is currently a school of thought theorizing the law of exchange works not merely upon an object's nature but also position. If this is the means by which the person of the Optimate has absconded, it should be quite reasonable to exchange the apes for something roughly equivalent in whichever sub-layer we manage to explore."
 
 
Ulukaan Delegate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); "like a menu? Flip through the existential layers until we find something we like?"
 
We have been given to understand that our Inquisitor has some ideas about the colony, should this become a joint venture."
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "have, mmmm, the esteemed alchemists of Xingando..,,., managed, ah, to pierce, haha! so to speak, this,, veil? H-have they looked upon these, as you so eloquently put it, as surely must be your meaning, other worlds?"
 
 
Léon Masque (Xingaondo); "To the delegate from Ulukaa:
 
If there is another world, chances are there is more than one. If we can travel to one, we can reach another. Stands to reason we will eventually be able to travel to which substances exist beyond - though our reach may, at first, be limited. I suggest we establish a base of operations upon which layer we can travel to first, then progress from there."
 
To the representative of Gron:
 
Such a thing may not yet be observed directly! Just as a powerful wind might only be seen by its effects, these other places are currently only visible by their expatriates among us. Clearly the most direct transubstantial route is via the ape's tunnel nexus, though of course as a man of business and not an addicted poet I myself have not travelled that land."
 
 
(Xingando surrenders the floor as there are no further questions)
 
 
languid applause from Ulukaa’s Reclining Arbor Zone
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "ah-ahh, s-sorry, the, er, mAXIMal has been, ahaha, preparing his presentation, which -- OH YES: the presenter on behalf of the Gronnate will be, mhm, GRON MAXIMAL, may we, you know, revel in the sight of his terrible form, mmhmm -- anyway, he will be presenting his paper in a few short hours, and then,,, hmmmmmm, the Gronnate will. Be taking questions......."
 
 
Several hours pass
 
 
Lieutenant-Scholar Rorom (Gronnate, (Snivelling)); "aaah,, a few hours still... Bear with...."
 
 
Several hours pass
 
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); "Aha! Hellooo, my dearest darlings! Ah, but who is, you may ask, cavorting his fine cerulean features behind yonder lectern, lo, who sashayes so gracefully to his spot behind the lectern, lo, haha! Is it Gron Maximal, you ask yourselves, for he is meant to speak, and by the sheen of his breastplate and the Ir-shaking terror of his morning breath it is not! You are in the presence of doctor-general Lolour Guridia, yes! Yes, I shall be delivering the Gronnate's address -- unexpected, I know, but Gron Maximal, wretched, beautiful, impenetrable he, is taken with one of his, aha, moods, and has decreed -- yes, decreed, that I shall speak in his stead! So settle your fine rumps into your seats and place your final bets on the graduates for, by the steel of my scholar's falchion, I shall now confer upon you gathered the shocking revelations gathered by our esteemed Gronnate regarding those lands called the Optimate!"
 
 
He takes a moment to inhale, having spoken all of the above in a single breath and having turned a distinctly unGronly red
 
 
He takes a moment more to thumb through his notes and inhales once more
 
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); ""Point the first, the ah, Cryos, which I believe we have heard discussed by our illustrious colleaugues at this -- yes this very Gronference!  As you already know, these are persons frozen from a past age, you know. And, lo, thanks to the incredible diplomatic skills of our department of Army and the excellent intrepreters that travel among them we have able to engage in a kind of intercourse -- the verbal kind, you know. These savages, erstwhile perplexed by our terrifying appearances, were ultimately swayed by the University's excellement military discipline and, after, I admit, some rather tense exchanges, have ultimately been prevailed upon to speak with us again, upon the occassion of future missions."
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); ""Point the second, the Cryos with whom we spoke made rather, ah, nonspecific references to a place they called the 'Tower of Flames', which stands upon the large island within the Optimate. This place seemed to inspire in them a certain kind of fear, and they made some mentions of 'portals upon portals', but the words of savages are of course unreliable and often false, and so we have devoted little of our precious, though bountiful, intellectual resources to this question, and instead throw it, like some form of proverbial red meat, which as we all know is the most delicious kind, to the gathered and brilliant minds of Ir to contemplate!"
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); ""Point the third, although we find we have been, so to speak, scooped by our colleagues from Ulukaa, is the savage white apes. We shall not repeat what you have already heard about them, but our sentries saw them from afar, fleeing, as it were, person on great metal ships, although the persons upon the ships themselves were too far to see..."
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); ""Point the fourth, during an expedition to the Optimate, a detachment of troops encountered what they mystifyingly refer to as a 'sky nation', which, apparently impressed by our men's prowess in ritual combat, bestowed upon this detachment the power of flight. Our best and brightest currently have these individuals under supervision and are determining whether this power can, ahh, generalized to the broader Gronnish public."
 
Doctor-General Lolour Guridia (Gronnate, (Non-Snivelling)); ""Point the fifth, and most shocking, is our department of pseudoastronomy has detected, ahhh, shall we say, subspatial tremors in the deep metafabrics of the universe, which they attribute to a kind of tearing, and theorize that some complete rupture, whatever that means, shall occur in approximately eight months. What shall emerge from that rupture, or perhaps fall in, remains speculative, but, to the Herald's mention of Worms, we posit that these tremors are indeed comparable to a kind of vermin burrowing."
 
"We would like to close these, ah, revelations by echoing the calls for international cooperation inaugurated by our friends from Ulukaa and Xingando. Indeed, we wish to reiterate these selfsame calls, and iterate upon them in the spirit of concrete action, by submitting that, in the name of all that is Gron, and indeed there is much Gron to speak in the name of, a treaty of mutual defense and cooperation, to be forged in this very lecture hall, incorporating no less than all the nations whose delegates are present -- that is the Mourgelends, Xingando, Ulukaa, and, naturally, the Gronnate."
"We will, of course, be taking questions."
 
 
Ulukaan Deligate (Human(?),(Ulukaa)); "Ulukaa has no problem with such a treaty and repeats Her suggestion of a joint expedition of discovery."
 
 
A zombie hobbit speaks on behalf of the Prof. Antef, who is indisposed. 
 
 
Mourgelands Delegate (Zombified); “The Morguelands will assent to this treaty."

3 comments:

  1. Honestly I thought this was genius and apparently no-one cares. Also my sister wont just shut up, at least long enough for Laputa: Castle in the Sky to finish god fucking damnn it.

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    Replies
    1. I can only speak for myself. I come to your blog for your content and your commentary. It competes with many other sources of interest and it OFTEN wins, and I have a backlog of many years of posts here that I look forward to getting to.

      That said, my automatic first feeling with things like this is that a collaboration in which you are just one of many creators, and you aren’t working with Scrap or David McGrogan or someone who’s similarly proven, is that other people’s efforts are likely to lessen the effect so it is likely to lose out to other sources of interest. I’m not saying that that’s right or wise, and I don’t know to what degree input was spread between contributors, but that’s my honest read on it.
      That’s partly why I asked you what you would do with a particular nation; I was looking for a place to start that’s likely to be your whole creation, and some more commentary, because it seemed crass to just out and out ask what was your work and what other people did even though I wanted to know that. If other people’s work was as fascinating, I’d discover that along the way.

      I think what would have drawn me into it from the outset is if you began with a commentary on *why* you find it fascinating, like your book reviews; I found your review of Playing at the World very interesting and I read Usama Ibn-Munqidh’s book because of your commentary on it.

      Tell your sister to shut up cause I need your Miyazaki animism content more than whatever the fuck she’s talking about

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    2. You had to be there I guess

      ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

      The design of Laputa robots would make fun minis

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