Memories of Death
The comet was drawing closer to Orkfia, each day the prominent feature growing in the sky, resembling more than anything a second sun but furiously red, competing to outshine its equivalent. It made nights hard to separate from days, wasn't it for the red tint it gave objects under its influence. Each day larger than the day before, it kept causing panic amongst the elders of many tribes. Most Empyreons controlling them could remember their own pasts by now, and knew that whatever the comet would do - it wouldn't destroy them. It wouldn't restore peace or still the wars either though, that was not the nature of Orkfians. Pressed on by the threat of complete annihilation, they kept on warring, like so many times before.
The Empyreons could remember enough now not to panic themselves, but it was barely that. What the memories also brought with them was death. And rather than being brought back 100 years ago, to a world where the forests still grew almost untouched, they would likely be summoned in a future just years after their deaths, and maybe not until after the comet would hit the planet's surface. They knew for sure that the tribes over which they were ruling would not last the time between their own physical death and being brought back by the summoning mages. Of course mages would, and as they always did, stand by ready to bring an Empyreon back to Orkfian life, but the time this took would surely lay waste to their tribes. They could only hope that their allegiances with other Empyreons, and theirs in return, would lessen the damage.
During this age, the awakening as some of them would already refer to it as, it had become clear that some abstract force had lost influence over them, else their memories of the past shouldn't have been as clear as this. Some Empyreons even claimed they remembered how to stop the comet now, knowledge dating back to its first appearance 26 ages ago. The only problem was that many Empyreons had already died. Not just from battle - as the memories revealed was the natural process of Orkfian life - but from aging. No memories would give any clue as to what caused their death, or why. Empyreons had, for as long back as their memories would stretch, always been granted never-ending life. Death was not a concept that they feared, but maybe they should now?
Old memories revealed earlier struggles against the comet, or rather the mechanics behind it. Empyreons had tried many different ways before, the Babel Cannon only one of these attempts and it being aimed directly at the comet. New ideas were already in their last phases, but the race against time was now more apparent than anytime before. Most knew they would not live to see the comet, but they knew also this time that if nothing was done it might be the final end of Orkfia. Their memories told them that the last recurrence Orkfia saw - also saw the end of the time spell. And nothing would provide truth of the opposite, not even the most powerful mages could feel even a trace of it. What worse was, even with combined forces they would be too few or too weak to recast anything like it. As it looked, their world was about to be destroyed and they could do nothing against it.
Trying to explore the memories of their pasts gave no comfort, because what laid beyond the impact of the comet nobody had yet seen or could predict. What would it feel like, waking up to a world that could very well be completely barren? With only charred remnants of the Orkfian forests, the inner lakes of Orkfia dried out or the clear air carrying dust from crushed mountains, slowly suffocating them. The outlooks over even the least pessimistic forecasts were disturbing at best. Preoccupying themselves with these thoughts had already drove several Empyreons mad, trying to bring others with them as they themselves erased their lands in fear of what would follow the comet. It stood clear, however, that the comet would hit Orkfia and likely bring with it a second age. An age of death, or renewed life, all depending on how the two powers that be would balance out.
Orkfia Infinity / Orkfia II: Alliances At War
This was the final chapter of the Empyreons, a collection of stories accompanying the first age of the new "infinity" version of the online strategy game Orkfia. If you wish to be one of those to discover this new world, without the boundaries of an impending comet impact, feel free to sign up for an account within the game. And who knows? Maybe the next story will be based on you, or your alliance's actions, during an age to come.
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Last updated: January 2013