As a writing exercise and as a way to document ideas for various settings, populations of people, and their cultures I wrote a page from the perspective of a member of several cultural groups on my imagined world of the All Mind. They were written out in haste and without much thought soI plan to review and revise them later, but now I present them so as to have them available.
There is a spring, tis Brigit’s holy spring, upon the side of Sliebe Danu. It is the quiet center of the whole world, a place of peace and solitude. Does not the whole riot of the land swirl about this eye of the storm a quiet and magic place apart?
The old Gaellic lands of the colony just after the Star Fall ranged about grean Mount na Gael across this inner sea from the magic isle. West the mole men work the mines under the mountains. Far to the north and East the Folk of Sin live atop their pinnacles and fly their sky ships against the dragons and their masters, the Darklings. These folk of the cold northern forests and mountains are allied against all humantiy with the Gobli who range all about the wastelands of the world. With the Darklings they vie with the Sin and the Sea faring Fomorians, the raiders and slavers of the Disputed Lands and the Scots of the Isthmus below those broken lands, but not far to the East. Then too, the brown and black folk fled the Old Gael to the south and wide they ranged to the steaming jungles of jaguars and the cruel Corn Kings, to the deserts of the great Khan, and even south of that to Nubia even to the Western sea. North of them and West of the Western mountains of the Molemen are the Umircens. These left the Gaels as ones and two’s and small families to found the many city states of the Umircan plains from mountains to the seas. There too are elves of the RibbonWood. North of all live the Iron men, the Rus, and their thralls the Inuit ice men. If you sail west from Umirca or indeed East of this isle there are Celts among the islands of all the seas.
There are so many peoples, but in the middle of it all is a blue pool on an ice topped purple mountain above a green isle in the inner sea.
It is known how our folk came to inhabit this isolated island fastness. Always we shose to live a civilized life and yet always we chose to live apart. So it was that we peopled a village among wild hunters, a town among small farms and when the gobli and human kind went to war we built out city amidst the sea and left them to their warring
And so it was that we chose to expand to other isles, to seek safe havens in the seas and waterways near the coast and to treat with others for fortified hold fasts or on the coast from ships in strength.
When we found a lonely shore we would note it and the resources there found. We were always short of good lumber so often lumberman followed close on the heals of explorers. With good timber we built great ships to range up and down the coast. Other coastal people would try to compete, but we were the first and easily the best tradesmen. We ranged north of our northerly home to trade for iron and gold with the Rus and far to the south for spices,k cotton, and suger from far to the south of the great Khan. We are the Kings of the great Western Ocean.
We have become a great people, but we have not forgotten how we came out of the Gaels who had enslaved our fathers over the eastern mountains. Nor have we forgotten that our fathers came from a planet that circled a star named Sol far off. All this we remember.
Are we not the true sons of Captain Bailey and his sky sailors? We have lost the stars for now, but wide we range upon the Seas even, it is said, beyond the spine of the world. Though none have returned from the far side of the world, one day they will. One day we will sail all about this world and to, as Captain Bailey, to other worlds among the stars.
Our father and mother fled the currupt Gael of the Daemon Danu. They and the true Scots, brothers and wives, built a land apart and defended it against grasping Danu and ravening Balor and the Morrigan of war. We sought only peace to raise our children, to grow our crops.
So, in their wisdom, our great father and mother built a wall to keep out the Gaels and Slavers and Fomorians and Sinoese and the Darkling’s Goblin hordes. The sea we leave to the war crows, on hill and cranog we live.
When raiders came ashore the clans gathered. We would rise from the mist and annihilate our enemies until our lonely shore brought no raider. Reavers knew to sail on.
Rarely they would come in greater numbers than we could easily crush on the beach so we let them come, bleeding them all the while. At some point they would realize they had gained nothing and lost much. The trip to the sea was harder still until they found their boats burned or taken and the end of the survivors was the same as the first to die. Such was the way we dealt with invaders.
It was strange to see clans who fought and raided each other coming together against a common foe, or perhaps it had more to do with how most disputes were settled by the combat of champions and rarely involved general combat.
Our interior valleys are rich, our cattle grow fat on the hills and grain for bread and ale grows in profusion in the plains. All our men have time to train in arms and to hunt. But our heroes and champions train skills to levels unparalleled in the world.
The Rig of the Gael oppressed us, forced us into slavery. We toiled in the fields for the arrogant pale skins, feeding them, building their palaces and all knowing we were equals, knowing that we shared the knowledge of athe other world, Gaia, the workings of the sky ship. But Danu and her Celts, her Gael, they made us slaves.
So we rose up and killed the task masters. We fled their spears and their chariouts to the south lands, over the Freedom River, thru the great swamp, deep in the dark jungles, beyond the desert waste, to our lands, to our forested hills, to our high plains and tall mountains.
We traded with the Bedouin and the Corn Kings, but we do not allow them to live on our lands. The sea lords anchor in our harbors but they do not go beyond the quay, these are our lands. We were equal, but they enslaved us, we were wise in the old knowledge, but they stole our knowledge and sent us to the fields. Never again will they have power over us.
This is why we kill our enemies. This is why we do not sell our brothers and sisters to our neighbors. This is why we do not take slaves or buy slaves or trade with any who do. For one man to own another is abhorant to us. We live apart and do not mix our blood with others. We remember the years of our enslavement and it will never happen again.
Our land is free land. Our people are free. So it will ever be.
Ours is a cold hard world of red rock and ice. But better to rule in Hell… much worse to serve there. So we thank the gods of ice and fire that we are not the ice folk. They are our subjects, our prey.
We have the magic of iron. we have the slavers chains. We have the branding irons. But we have a fear of them ever rising against us so the only answer is to keep them crushed to the ground. This we do with our ice ships and our contempt for them. The best and the brightest we cull and sell to the south. The strong we use in our households and mines, under close watch, lock and key, and the whip. the devious and sly we use against their own folk.
Through their labors we live well enough. It is ironic that once we had left the Gaellic chains behind it was the ice folk who led us to this place. They hunted and fished, feeding and clothing us, they even took a turn in the mines and gathered the thin timber on the spine of th eworld with us. They prefered the ice while we exploited the red rocked scab. Then, when wood and iron had made us stronger, we took from them what they would have freely given. And then we took their freedom.
Our is a cold hard world, we Rus who live near the endless ice. Some say that we serve to keep their blood lines fresh. Some even say the slaves we take live better with us as thralls than they would on the ice. Easy to say as the master. Tis better to rule in Hell than to serve in heaven, or so said the Devil and so say the Rus, finding our place in this cold hell.
We called the land Dalriada for the confederation of Irish, Scots, and Picts that came together under McAlpine to make a Scottish kingdom. Such was our hope, but no such thing happened. Instead the gods, the children of Danu, seemed to drive off or leave with one splinter after another.
First the Rus, then the Sin, then Danu and her daughters fled to Eri with a faithful few, good ridance. And Dalriada? Well, far from coming together, the people split into smaller and smaller Tuaths, each more jealous of its honor than before and nursing a grudge at its founding. The law was largely forgotten in favor of the sword and the spear.
The land was fertile which only made more time for war. It was a time for heroes. There was land to the north and west, still more across the safron Mor. But warriors would rather go chase the Sin or try to hunt down escaped Umircens in the great Northwestern wastes.
Then Balor began to set up permanent camps across the Safron, but not to expand our territory and raise crops. No, these were places to stage slave raids against the Sin.
At this time the folk that became the Scots left across the Safron. Their purpose was to settle and build a culture apart from the Gael in Dalriada. Perhaps not too surprisingly Balor’s coastal Fomorian slavers raided some Isolated Scots settlements and the Scots retreated south and eventually built their wall.
Later, the folk who came to be called Galatians left for the Southern continent’s Northern horn.
And we in Gael still war, though the fields don’t provide so well as they did. Though the great waves of Gobli Hordes have come and gone leaving drifts of metal and bone. Still Dalriada crys for blood and drinks ours, red and hot, when ever it is offered.
Once the Sin were one. But now the Shoguns have divided us into city states. Or perhaps it was the topography and our enemies that did it. Who can say? We have many enemies, it is good that our homes are fortresses of stone, fortunate that they reise to the clouds on minnacles of rock.
We fled the Gael who still pursue us. We suffered the Fomorians who took us as slaves and worse. We faced the Gobli first, the hordes of the Darllings and then we took wing to protect our homes and futures from the Draken of the Darklings.
Have we not met each enemy and defeated them? We are secure in our castles of stone and now we sail our cloud ships to hunt the Dragons where they live
But for how long? Now, more and more, Sinoese fights Sinoese. Our many cloud ships and brave dragon divers drove the dragons from the skies above our citadels. Now sometimes the cloud ships can assail our sities of stone when no other force could.
Now there is a shogun who calls himself the Emperor of the North, And admiral called the Blue Emperor, and even a sinoese warrior who seeks to found “The Empire or the Earth.”
Bad enough when Gaels and Fomor tried to enslave us, now sometimes it is the Sin that sell their brothers and sisters into slavery. This emperor of the Earth is the worst offender for he fights in the disputed lands and takes slaves from the Gael surely, but also the children of Sin in the slave pens of the Fomor and the Gael not to free them, but to sell them to fund his conquest.
We are the children or the moons, called foul ones by humans and lords by the Gobli. The All Mind made us to do its bidding beyond its reach. We are night stalkers, forest dwellers, we do not relish the unflitered light of the day stars. For this reason we are called Darklings.
Surely our fathers and mothers were born of the All Mind. But it made imperfectly and too well for its purpose. Its purpose, we soon saw, was not for our best, not our good at all, we were tools, we were for the humans.
So in caves and forest swamp we learned the making magic. We made brood poos and drew out our brothers and sisters. We copied the Gobli and even made them better. We made servants of our own, we made weapons of muscle and bone, we made dragons and we turned them against the purpose of th All Mind, against humanity.
Now we are masters of the making magic. We terrorize with our armor, never let the humans see the true face of their enemy. We make war steeds, and swift steeds, and dragons, and Golems, living armor, and fireglobes, and trip weed, and fire lances.
We have been thwarted so far. But we build our strength in the great mountains west of the Gael and we sharpen our knives. The goblin wars were but a test. Man will not stand against the next onslaught. Then too, we will be rid of the ribbon-wooders. And then, when all is accomplished, we will be rid of our father, the All Mind, and then we shall rule, we shall make, we shall be as gods.
Eldest Son of Balor (of Lugh)
I am the oldest son of Balor, king of the Fomor, the prince who will never be king. There are hundreds of us, sons, grand sons, spawn of wives, concubines, slave girls, and whores. Many of my brethern are dead, but many more live and hope to one day take my father’s crown.
Some may know, but it seems to me that they do not comprehend the reality of the hundreds of years my father and I have lived. They do not see the way he uses them. They plot and scheme, but they live and die at his word and often serve his purpose even while they think they will succeed in supplanting him.
I am not his heir, though I am the oldest of his. Whether it is because he hates my mother, Brigid, or for some error of mine, or because I am not evil enough for his taste I do not know. But he delights in tormenting me.
He keeps me close, as one should always keep ones enemys, and so I stay to watch the man. I also must watch my back. My brothers think I am favored to be at my father’s feet, they see me as a rival. They seek to rise and they do not know that no son of Brigid will ever sit his throne. But then Balor never means to give it up, he means to live forever.
Balor hates. That seems to me to be the greater part of evel, More than anyone else he hates Lugh, his brother, and second of all he hates my mother, his sister, Brigid. Sometimes I know he hates me third, but no one could supplant the first two in his antipathy. His nearest brother, his wife, and his son, folk so close to him he hates the most.
Eri and the Faerig Isles
Our’s is a place apart, a land where our ways can find their fullest expression. Our ways, not the ways of the Earth Celts, not Danu’s, not her god’s and goddesses’ way, though we may be their blood. Our ways were shaped by our lives and our lands.
Our lands are amid the waters of the inner sea, enfolded in mist, protected from the harshness of the outside world. As we say, “Any trouble that comes must fit in a boat. How big can it be?”
The rivers and lochs are full of fish, there are red deer and boar in the copses, herbs abound for food and for mendicants, and fruit trees crown the high hills.
We have no needs that would force us to look to those over the sea, nor do we have much they would want to trade to gain. Our lives are simple, but long, though not as long as our memories. Few are the folk from the outside who value peace and knowledge, but those who come may find those things.
We know that our people came to these isles from the stars, a planet called Earth, the third planet from the star, Sol. Our projenitors came in a colony shop full of earth type plants and animals with which to re-create an earth like enviornment here.
And they succeeded. Dana Bailey planned to found a colony of celts, living as they lived, and despite her and her rapacious “god” children, her dream is fulfilled here on their green isles.
Here we live more simply than we could. We shoose to hunt and gather though we know of agriculture, hydroponics, gene splicing, and even artificial wombs.
I am the mother of my people. I am the chief of my clan. I fought Gloona and beat her until she yielded. I led our females to drive off the rouge, Mulak, when he killed Peltook. I faced him and drove him off. But Gloona was too proud until I beat her.
I am the mother. I wish there was no need for males, no need for a mate, but we need young to grow strong. We still raise Peltook’s last brood. Moogat, the withch, says I shouls eat them as many mothers do when they rise. This I will not do.
Our males are too young or I would shoose from them and chase away the rest. I must choose between two bad paths. I must go to other clans and take a mate or I must find a band of ogres, bachelors who may or may not have gone mad with blood lust.
I am now mother. I mate, but I will keep no mate. Moogat warns that this is not the path of wisdom. Moogat talks and talks, but I see no wisdom in her words. Her council is empty. Moogat talks to Gloona too and I know some of the words.
Perhaps I will chase Moogat and Gloona out of the clan like we chase off the old males that like to kill the females and eat the young. Sometimes smart and swift is better than strong.
It is strange that only the mother breeds, don’t we need more young? What if every mature female was a mother and a clan was like a gathering of clans?
This I will think on.
Sons of Loki Called by some, The Dwarves
Folk that don’t know our homes, our treasure houses, and our work places think we live in dank caves. Many think us a species apart. Certainly we tend to be thick of waist and broad of shoulder, and too, while Gaellic and Umircen tend to be light complected and haired we who descend from Loki the son of Dana and his miners are short, dark haired, and perhaps even darker of skin.
It may be that our homes have shaped us, but not so much in the living as the making. We are deep delvers, miners of the mountain’s wealth, we are masters of metal and stone. Perhaps more than any other folk we recall the knowledge of the star farers.
We grow fruit and vegetables in crystal galleries high in the mountains. We forge mechanical wonders, both tools and weapons and all manner of conveniences and mine apparatus. We bring light to the deep darkness. We are fire masters. We are wather masters. We are stone masters.
These thinsg we have mastered, but we strive for still more, to recapture what was our heritage of the stars. Our knowledge is great but our numbers are small. Perhpas because we are not very social, preferring solitude, perhaps because our people are jealous of knowledge hard won, perhaps because most care more for the knowledge we have mastered, for stone and metal and mechanical things, so that they have given up on ever regaining the high knowledge.
So we worship the son of th Sun, Quatsaquatl, but which of the suns is the father? Is the other sun the mother? is the Day Star the son? Ask a priest and you might get as many answers as there are priests, they will say whatever gives them power over you. For this reason, one answer that they will not give is that none of the suns is the father of Quatzquatl, that star is far away.
Much was forgotten and much hidden by the priests to give them power over the people. How else to make them erect temples to far off gods? This is why my family, a family of scribes, passed knowledge of the ancients by story and poem, passed by memory.
We know what a star is and that we live on a planet and that the planet we live upon that is near there stars is not the planet from which our forefathers came. We know that our folk came to this place in a great ship and that they slept in a deep chill to preserve them in their long journey. Perhaps this is why the priest leave young children, tightly bound, in icy mountain top retreats, some perverted memory of our arrival here or perhaps it is just that they love death more than anything.
We write their words and copy their proclamations, we record the annals and publish their oracles. We know their desires and they are not even to their gods, but rather, they lust for blood, for death, always for death.
The Corn King’s people they call us. It would be truer to say we are the Corn King’s Priest’s slaves if we live and the priest’s victims if we don’t.
Ribbon Wood Elves, The Ui Uilsen
We are the people of the Ribbon Wood, creatures of the All Mind. We are the seperated folk of the All Mind’s first communication with humanity. We have been driven from all but the western edge of the Ribbon Wood and now we could survive apart, but we value our contact with the all Mind.
We are not the ambassadors of the All Mind anymore, but we could be. We need not converse with men, nor darkling, nor dragon, nor any creature among the heavens, still, we do. Strange that we grow more curious and range more widely — or perhaps we seek from other minds the knowledge and communion of the community of the All Mind.
Perhaps, as we mingle with other folk, we are changed more than we know. Still, seeking knowledge, and community we hide our true selves, our nature. We come and go among these other groups only rarely do we carry away anything more than observations. Still, we reach out cautiously to learn new things, even with all our past memories we asdd new and are changed.
Has anyone changed as much as us? Little by little we have gone from appendage of the All Mind to, automaton, to atonomous tools, to depandant creatures, to people in league with the All Mind.
There are several more to be added and I plan to make changes to each to sharpen point of view and give indications of where the observations occur on the timeline.