Mar 11, 2022
This episode carries content warnings for cannibalism, blood, direct physical trauma to a bodily organ, burned hands, implied temporary imprisonment, and rotten food.
Having escaped Alaway's ad hoc temple, the Blackwick Group has attended to their collective wounds and begun to piece together what the vampiric Lord of Wax is planning. In short: godhood. In detail: the theft and usurpation of the last, material power of the Mother-Beast, the god who once called this territory hers. They know, too, that to confront their foe directly at this point would be to invite destruction and calamity. And so it is time for counter-schemes and further research. Perhaps, though... perhaps just a peek? A quick look at what this recurring enemy is capable of. Just a glance, and nothing more.
This week on Sangfielle: Wax, Inchor, and Iron Pt. 4
The Almanac of the Heartland Rider
Blackwick County: From the mines to the lake, the hills to the flats, the town once called Eastern Folly has felt a little more expansive now that it’s out of the hard grip of the old curse. It’s people aren’t perfect, but they’ve made it through some dark times, and that’s more than most can say.
Zevunzolia: Who the hell knows. A miraculous city waiting to be built? A utopian dimension adjacent our own? "The Seventh Sun Itself," I think I heard one of those fools call it. All I know is, however prime and pristine it is in promise, the pricetag keeps going conveniently unmentioned...
The Second Canton, aka The Pale Magistratum: The Second Canton has ordered itself around its Magistrates—holy marshals given weapons blessed by Fulmina, goddess of immediate justice, and the right to use that power as they see it.
Free Seas of Kay’va, formerly the Fourth Canton: First established after Cecile Cartine’s revolution over 300 years ago, today Kay’va is home to a collection of aligned communes who swear that the only way to prosperity is through the defense of equality.
Facts and Figures
Proctor Ekashi Wolff (he/him): Once, the good proctor helped lead the services of the Triadic Pyre in Blackwick, and spend what free time he had working with the township's council. It was that same interest in community and service which led him to stand up for his people when the Pale Magistrates blew into town. Unfortunately for Mr. Wolff, good character is not bulletproof.
Sister Marisha (she/her): For decades, the human called Marisha served as the representative of the Boundless Conclave in Eastern Follow and as the only apparent follower of the old Cult of the Mother-Beast. Eager to guide, and quick to reprimand, she gained a reputation as a well meaning hard ass in the mining town. Now she finds herself adjusting to life inside this secret priory of salt, ash, and ceramic.
Ekule Polyte (he/him): The Blackwick group first met this “Star-Touched” Kay’van agent under the pseudonym of “Janek,” hiding out in Blackwick County. Now, he waits patiently for extraction.
Dr. Kerr Kern (she/her): A Telluricist on loan to the Magistrates, where she works on final preparations for her Keen exam. While she's grown close to the group over the last year, their methods do trouble her. Currently holding Marn's research on Zevunzolia, nullstuff, the Wrights of the Seventh Sun, and the fundamental nature of curses.
Alekest san Geraint, the Margrave of Tescano, the Porcelain Knight (he/him): If you’re a long time reader of this publication, Alekest needs no introduction. You know him from his past adventures, like the slaying of the UnSevered Beast or his solitary stand at Cedartree Station. Maybe you forget some of the details, his angst-filled childhood, the fraught years after his mother’s death, his uncanny dreams. Well, Knight Pickman seems not to be a reader, if her confusion at the Margrave’s arrival is any indication.
Aterika’Kaal (it/its): An ambivalent and ancient spirit. Offers the sweet smell and sublime beauty of roses and the sturdy foundation of a root structure. In exchange: Feed it.
Alaway (currently he/him, varies historically): Was last seen as the waxy, vampiric minister of Yellowfield named Regan, whose generations-long study of technology led him to dream of (and work towards creating) "The City of Lights," a place of flameless fire, energetic implements, and the safety and freedom to live as one wants. Now, having somehow returned to the form that the Blackwick Group first met him as, he threatens to steal the very lifeblood of Blackwick itself.
The Course: There is debate about the true nature of the Heartland’s Truth, the power that turned Sangfielle into what it is today. But the Cleavers call it the Course. Part river, part lesson, part direction traveled. Entirely beyond the grasp of mortal minds.
The Structure: Reason, logic, sense. The world is, fundamentally, a place that fits together and functions. We may not like that, say the adherents of the structure. And sometimes, the world may move in ways beyond our particular ken. But there is something holding it together, and that, they say, is the Heartland’s Truth: The Structure.
The Shape: Are the trains that run across the Heartland bound to the Structure, or do they direct it? Is the overlap between the two even real at all, or might two machinic forces be at work here in Sangfielle?
Sisters of the Mother-Beast: A dedicated priory of worshippers, living in an eternal hymn, worshipping a god long dead.
The Caravan of the Coin: Cursed by Ribbadon, Frog God of Wealth, these traveling merchant-clerics never arrive at a destination carrying what they expect.
Wrights of the Seventh Sun: A secret society dedicated to the construction of Zevunzolia, whatever the cost. Their motivations are many: Some believe that the Devils ought to have continued climbing whent hey escaped hell, that this was not the paradise earned. Otherse believe that Zevunzolia is telos of telos, the end-cause of all end-causes, and thus will inevitably bring itself into being. And given that, to do anything but aid it is to risk exclusion from it, or worse.
The Disciples of the Triadic Pyre: Appropriately devoted to a trio of gods, the Triadic Pyre believe that entropy is the only certain thing in this world, and as such aim to master it. Recently began to mark workers willing to do their tasks in the mines with their brand.
Hosted by Austin Walker (@austin_walker)
Featuring Art Martinez-Tebbel (@atebbel), Jack de Quidt (@notquitereal), Janine Hawkins (@bleatingheart) Sylvi Clare (@sylvibullet), Ali Acampora (@ali_west), Andrew Lee Swan (@swandre3000), and Keith J Carberry (@keithjcarberry)
Produced by Ali Acampora
Music by Jack de Quidt (available on bandcamp)
Text by Austin Walker
Cover Art by Craig Sheldon (@shoddyrobot)
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