Pan Post 45 returns to the Indra (Story Arc) mini-arc within Pantheons of the NeSiverse. Litik Map and Litik Rjingi arrive on The Absent Isle and seek out Kavili Loch. They meet some nayaraks who are conserving the island. Rjingi agrees to stay with them and inform them of events that led the two litiks to the island while Map goes up to the lake. He is allowed entry by Kara Fahran and he finds a statue of Kavili where he suddenly enters a vision. With the advice of Rakimi, Map is able to better guide his vision and see what he wishes to see. He sees a halo and a red-skinned woman in the middle, as well as Brethrain the gas giant. However he is distracted by another vision where he sees Pesu, a machine made by Jitarayara, biological samples and the deceased Kara Pashna. When he wakes up Kara Fahran has saved him from the demon and ushers him to the museum of the crater.
Kavili Pt 1
Litiks Map and Rjingi wade out of the ocean. Map turns to wave back to Ishvat, who had carried them across the ocean to the isles that once belonged to Kavili, the Absent God. She wiggles her tails above the water, much to the embarrassment of Map and the keen interest of Rjingi. She's then gone, dipping beneath the waves and the two litiks turn to the island they find themselves on.
Unlike the tropical climes of the Jaravinjia Isles, The Absent Isle is much cooler and the trees are evergreens that stand tall and thick. A clear stone path leads away from the pebble beach and the two of them follow it, shaking their wet boots as they went. The sky is purple with the evening sun dipping below the horizon. Brethrain is towering above them, its great storms visible to the naked eye.
There's a pleasant haze of water hanging on the air that relaxes the two Indrans' muscles and soothes their skin. It's quite a relief after bathing in salt water for so long. As they emerge from the trees and into a clearing they can see the mountain-bowl that makes Loch Kavili. It towers up until its absent peak is evident. High above the bowl is a halo shaped ring of thick, white cloud caused by the ever-evaporating water of the lake. The cloud rains the same water back down into the hot lake water.
Litik Map: "This is going to be great!"
Litik Rjingi: "We're not alone, Map. Look."
He nudges Map and points towards a few Indrans that are planting a new tree. They head over to the nayaraks, who don't even notice the litiks until they're almost upon them.
Litik Rjingi: "Well met."
Nayarak Poyi: "Well met, litiks. I'm Nayarak Poyi."
Rjingi introduces them both and Poyi introduces the other nayaraks he's with. He takes a break from their work and comes over to talk with the visitors. He tugs off heavy gardening gloves and tosses them towards the pile of tools they have resting nearby.
Litik Rjingi: "What're you doing here? Planting trees?"
Nayarak Poyi: "Conservation project. Trying to rescue public lands from deterioration. Loch Kavili gets little love considering so few actually live here. So we've volunteered to help clean the place and add some plantlife here and there. We were cleaning out the lake yesterday."
Litik Map: "Was it really that dirty?"
He looks worried but the nayarak just smiles.
Nayarak Poyi: "Not really no. Just some rubbish left by tourists here and there. It's pretty much all cleaned up now. No worries. We were bathing in there all night."
Map throws his arms into the air and his cheer draws the temporary chuckles from the nayaraks.
Nayarak Poyi: "You're from Kamal?"
He looks at Rjingi's emblem.
Nayarak Poyi: "We've heard the rumours. Are you here searching for answers?"
Rjingi nods solemnly.
Litik Rjingi: "We were tasked here by Maharashtak. We'll be going up to Loch Kavili to seek answers."
Nayarak Poyi points down the stone path.
Nayarak Poyi: "If you head down that path you'll be there in two minutes. There's a kara on duty outside."
Litik Rjingi: "On duty? Aren't people allowed in?"
Nayarak Poyi: "Oh, it's nothing like that! You just have to take your shoes off."
He points to their boots.
Litik Map: "Oh right! Kavili was said to have the most beautiful feet in all of Indra. So I guess we honour that by showing off our own feet, huh?"
Nayarak Poyi: "No idea. The kara says do it so we do it. I've never been up on history. But do you think, when you're done, you could come and talk to us? We're dying for answers here. We're all on edge. I hate to think we're conserving this place for no reason..."
Litik Rjingi: "Could be a while... tell you what. I'll stay here a while and tell you what we know. Map, you can go up ahead of me. Okay?"
Litik Map: "Fine by me! Your loss! I get to jump in the lake first!"
Rjingi just rolls his eyes and watches Map skip down the path towards the mountain-bowl. The trees grow more sparse the closer he gets and, eventually, he hits rocky terrain. There, cut into the side of the former mountain is a cave with torches marking the entrance. He walks inside and admires the attempts to make the hard rock more accommodating with murals and lights. He follows the corridor along until he sees the end and a little gate barring his path. On the gate is a little bell. He jingles it.
Kara Fahran: "Right here, little boy."
Map turns, startled, to his right to see the old kara slumped on a stool. He looks tired. His data-mould hovers by his ear and, to Map, looks widely active. Map supposes the man must spend much of his days in virtual space with little to do but guard this gate and watch shoes.
Litik Map slips off his boots without needing to be asked.
Kara Fahran: "Thank you. Just leave them there. I'll take care of them for you."
Litik Map: "Many boot thieves up here?"
Kara Fahran: "You're a funny one, are you?"
Litik Map: "I'm wondering if there's a shrine to artefacts of Kavili here?"
Kara Fahran: "Yep. Follow the path to the right to find the museum. To the left you'll get to the loch itself."
Map looks right. He should probably check them out first... but...
He turns left and hurries up the path, circling around the mountain wall until he reaches the very top. There he finds a diving board has been placed as well as stairs. He hops down the board and bounces into the air before belly-flopping the warm lake water with a tremendous splash. The sky is dark now and the light orbs, dangling from poles, illuminate the area. He's all alone in the warmth of the lake as he swims about. The romantic air gets to him and he feels giddy but relaxed and completely at ease. The haze of warm rain trickles down on his head as he breaststrokes in a circle.
He sees a seating area built into the lake where he can sit in the water and look up at a statue of Kavili. She stands tall and proud, six arms raised and each holding up a different object. One hand there's a hammer. Another hand there's a sword. Another there's a book. Another there's an ancient data-mould.
Her last two arms are on her hips.
He knows the statue is recent because Kavili was long gone before data-moulds were invented but he supposes it's the meaning that is important here, not the history of it. Kavili was largely the god of smithing and planning. Producing the documents to develop and plan and design new artefacts and tools. While Jitarayara creates large machines, Kavili created tools. Mostly Jitarayara has taken on the burden of Kavili's expertise for himself but all say her artefacts were like no other. She was also the governor of literacy. Not the kind of arcane knowledge of Trijara, but the practical skill of writing and tasking things down. Creating plans and designs.
Map sits and looks up at her. He feels a wave of dizziness begin to envelop him and, for a brief moment, he remembers why litiks aren't supposed to travel alone--
He feels his skin crawl but he pushes and kicks his way through the miasma of the Other Plane. He worries about what is happening in the real world but he cannot escape the vision manually. He has to just blindly hope any demon that slipped into reality wound up in the lake and couldn't swim.
As the thick soup of the Other Plane washes off of his skin he sees the blackness of space. He knows where he is. He's not just in a vision - he's in the 8th Realm, the Unwritten Realm. Here he should be able to seek out the future, seek it out like it's a storyboard. He knows what he wants. When an image of a growing tree creeps towards him he mentally tries to force it back. He doesn't want to know about a new tree growing. He must see her. The red-woman.
The tree dissolves and is replaced, again, by space. Then he sees something. A ring. A halo. He sees Brethrain. He sees the gods. All of them. He sees a woman in the centre of the halo. She has bright red skin but he cannot sees anything more clearly than that. She seems to be curled into a foetal position, as though she's in pain or protecting herself. He cannot keep the image. It hurries from him, as though stolen by someone else. He tries to follow it but he becomes distracted by the sight of another future vision.
He watches with confusion. He knows that the visions are not visions of what will be but what might be. But he has never heard of visions of a future that could have been...
He sees Pesu, his skeletal form watching a large machine that Map is sure Jitarayara must have built. Inside the machine Map can see biological samples in containers. And inside is a kara. The kara turns--
Litik Map: "Kara Pashna!"
He falls face-first into the lake but is dragged out again by an old but steady head.
Kara Fahran: "Sorry, it's Kara Fahran, little boy. Lucky I was here to beat the living daylights outta that demon before he sank his teeth into ya."
Map stares up at the old kara, uncomprehending.
Litik Map: "But I saw... He's dead but I saw him..."
Kara Fahran: "I think the heat has gotten to you. Come on, let's get you out of the loch. We'll sit you down in the museum..."
"When Al Ciao the Writer first created Kavili, he broke away from the by-month theme I wanted to give the gods of Indra and so I looked at the character and decided the work theme suited the month of September[Ext 1]. The conservationism in the post comes from National Public Lands Day[Ext 2] in September where people volunteer to maintain public parks. The idea that Kavili also stands for literacy as well as skill came from International Literacy Day[Ext 3], helping to further distinguish her features from that of Jitarayara. The act of going bare-foot stemmed from Hobbit Day[Ext 4] but I changed it to be that Kavili had beautiful feet rather than hairy hobbit feet.
I always knew I was building up to this post ever since Kavili's introduction. I knew the clues I wanted to give to future events and I knew I'd be using Litik Map to do it." - Britt the Writer