Pan Post 16 is the first in the mini-arc of Indra. In the Tandras mountains lurks the Kolaji temple where the god Trijara resides. He rises up through his cylindrical library to watch the aurora sweep across the sky marking the middle of the winter season. As he watches he senses a presence, an unusual and unwelcome occurrence in Kolaji. He greets the Indran, who reveals himself to be Kara Pashna, a kara for Jitarayara and explains he is there on important business.
A temple stands atop the lowest mountain of the Tandras. The Tandras are a large cluster of mountains, huddled together and reaching up through the clouds above. At the heart of the Tandras is the lowest peak, a squat mountain far more habitable than the rest. Sheltered from the fierce winds and the freezing snow, the temple is coated in a light blanket of white as the snowstorm atop the higher mountains causes its debris to flutter down to the lower mountaintop. The mountain, and its temple, are known as Kolaji - the temple of Trijara. The temple is made from ice, its walls carved and polished with extreme devotion and respect. The entrance to the temple, compared to its great size, is quite small but the doors are always open. A small path of sticky ice descends from the small door and worms its way through a mountain pass that would-be visitors would have to traverse. Yet those travellers are rare. Very rare. Not from lack of devotion to Trijara, but out of respect they stay away.
Inside Trijara himself walks slowly across the main hall, his long robes trail along the soft icy surface of the room. His reflection meets his eye when he glances down. The walls inside the hall are adorned with redvine. This plant is permanently coated in a layer of ice, which forms and grows along with the plant's bright red leaves. Gradually the ice will be broken, slightly, by the eventual force of the growing leaf, when it will quickly reform around the new growth. The redvine lives for centuries under this incredibly slow growth cycle. A redvine of just one metre is impressively old. Entire walls of redvine is beyond the comprehension of most sentient mortals.
Trijara sits himself down, a disk of light appearing beneath him and rising from the floor. He sits cross-legged and waits for the disk to transcend the floor of the hall into the upper rooms, none of which have floors. Here, in a spiral of the temple, he is surrounded by data-moulds. He holds his hand out and a single mould flies from its perch to his outstretched hand. To look at the glowing eight-shape of the data-mould is doing nothing, but the information stored within it is being read by the mind of Trijara.
Trijara himself stands out against the blue ice of the temple and fits in more with the redvine, his skin being just as red as those leaves. He burns with inner heat, staving off the frost of the deepest winter month. Yet his robes are blue, imitating the icy coat of the redvine plant. The fur of the robe is raised up against his neck and runs down the robe's front to the hem. The pattern on the robe itself is of sketchy mountains, depicting the Tandras outside. The disk continues to transcend the the cylindrical library until it reaches the transparent dome high above. From there he can view the peaks of the Tandras with his own white eyes. But he doesn't look to them. He looks beyond them.
The sky is deep blue, dark and forever on the verge of darkness during this cold time. But his mind savours the hope of the people of his world. And that hope suddenly spikes as the first green glimmer wafts in the sky as solar winds react with the magnetosphere of the planet. The aurora then, like a spreading fire, engulfs the sky in a beautiful haze of green. The regular phenomena happens during the middle of every winter season, marking the central period through that dark time. The hopes of the people are raised as they know the warmer months of spring are drawing nearer. Trijara takes out a small, thin shaft and slips it between his red lips. He draws on it and a thin plume of pink smoke sails lazily into the air. The match is merely known as a 'stick' and, as well as expanding the mind of the smoker, it creates an inner warmth that makes it a popular tool for the month. Trijara, and many of his people, will smoke a stick in celebration of the coming of the aurora. Now he can continue his introspection in solitude, staying indoors and maintaining his warmth. But even as he resumes his focus on the data-mould he senses an incoming presence. His disk lowers itself towards the hall again, leaving the beauty of the aurora above.
When he reaches the hall he sees a small man enter his hallowed hall. All of the gods of the planet Indra are roughly three times the height of their people though still built in similar shapes to their mortal creations. The man falls into a kowtow, knocking his forehead upon the ice. This display is an act reserved for Trijara alone, amongst the gods. While other gods may frequently be visited or requested of, Trijara is a god of solitude and it is great disrespect to come into Kolaji, especially during this divine time.
Trijara: "Rise, priest."
The priest, as typical for many priests of Indra, wears thick, though also ornate, armour. From his chest rise two golden wings to form the chestplate, shoulder pads and then extend upwards into two crescents to frame his head. His skin is stark white except for the bulbous jelly that protects his skull. From the bulb falls several thin tendrils that are not bound by artful decoration, unlike most others of the species. Instead he wears a headdress that consists of two large cog-like circles on either side of his bulb and rest upon a connection that slips underneath the jelly bulb and the tendrils to support both the neck and both cogs. Hovering, via a magnetic attraction, to the right cog is a miniature data-mould. It isn't as large as the one Trijara has, but because it is permanently stationed beside the priest's head it would be constantly attuned to the man's brainwaves; meaning he was forever half in his data-mould and half in the real world of Indra.
Because of the harsh winter the priest is wearing a thick robe over his armour, heavy and black with equally black fur-lining. Yet, standing now, before Trijara the priest would be able to feel the inner warmth of the god radiating through the hall. The priest uses his staff as support when standing. He is tired from his long journey.
Trijara: "You are a priest of Jitarayara?"
The cog motif gives it away, knowledge you don't need to be a god to know. The priest nods energetically but frantically.
Priest: "I am Kara Pashna, dear Trijara."
A kara of the priesthood. Trijara hasn't seen a kara for over a decade. Karas are a very high rank amongst the priesthood. Light orbs suddenly fill the hall, falling from the library and summoned by Trijara. They're commonly found all across Indra, thin shells filled with hundreds of illuminated insects that live their incredibly short lives within their own little microcosm. A small wonder of nature, to be sure, but also a convenient method of shedding light upon a darkened space. The priest's pale, white face glows in the yellow light of the orbs.
Trijara: "You should relate your tale, Kara Pashna. Then we shall decide if it was worth your intrusion..."
"The first post for my mini-series. Much of the basics for the arc were formed by this very post, the Indian-esque feel to the gods and the names and the introduction of Kara Pashna who would develop as the mini-arc's protagonist. Originally he was never meant to be a character beyond just this post. I wanted to create a living alien world, introducing minor details like the stick, data-moulds and redvine. I also wanted to give life to the world through its differing locations, which should be named to add that extra sense of reality and place." - Britt the Writer.