Friday, December 21, 2012

It's the End of the World as We Know it...

So the Apocalypse has come and gone and I feel fine.  Yet the end of the world is a seductive concept, as every individual always seems to presume they'll be a survivor of the end. Of course in a game you can really have your apocalypse, and so below is a table of ten world ends, in honor of today's non-pocalypse.  All are based on literary sources filtered though D&D logic.

Vastenov - 1887

1.“From what I've tasted of desire, I hold with those who favor fire” – Frost 
The world ended in fire, those that are left live huddled beneath the Earth out of the cindered skies and black obsidian deserts.  

2.“I think I know enough of hate, To say that for destruction ice, Is also great, And would suffice.” – Frost
The world ended in ice and sheets of frozen blue still blanket it.  Survivors crouch in caves in the lees of volcanos while nightmare creatures of white fur and fangs hunt endlessly through howling blizzard.

3.“Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold” – Yeats
The center of the world broke from divine struggle, titanic magics or simply untold age.  Now the fragments drift together a string of strange islands in the vastness of the Empyrean. 

4.“What rough beast, its hour come round at last, Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born” – Yeats
The Apocolypse Wyrm has come.  It's million children poison the Earth with their venom and pollute the sky with toxic breath, ichorous poisons drip from the leaves of every flattering tree.  To fight is folly, but their is no other path.

5. “On the day the world ends, A bee circles a clover,” - Milosz 
As if everyone has stopped in mid-task and walked away, they are simply gone, but a few remain, and things that should not have existed are crawling out of the shadows.
6.“Not With a bang but with a Whimper” -  Eliot
The world ended and no one realized, life goes on its ruts and and rituals continue unabated as in a waking dream.  Only you are awake from the dream and see the slow sickness spreading as the world contracts and at its edges something alien an antithetical intrudes.
7. “The Crumbling Pageant” – Dryden
Decadence and evil leaking in, the world of the fey has finally broken through and the innumerable courts of the otherworld demand fealty and sacrifice in this one.  Things change, melt and shift.  All is mutable whimsy, and all is deadly beauty.
8. “Everything’s Coming to a Grinding Halt” – The Cure
It has stopped, the magic and the gods drained from the world, and with them the cities and cultures of man crumble.  The arts are lost, the skills of living without magic or the boons of the gods are vague memories and savagery has reasserted itself.

9. “The bright sun was extinguish'd, and the stars Did wander darkling in the eternal space, Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air.” – Byron
The dying sun has burnt its last, only the moon and the worlds own slowly cooling heat allow any life, there are those who adapt - monstrous, those who struggle - futilely, and the majority who simply die.

10. "And where the scythes of Truth had mown. Clear space for Liberty's white throne.” - Realf
Truth is death, freedom is death and death now sits on its bone white throne above the world. Some may be living still, but they are monsters at loose in a world of undeath or livestock to the vampire lords waiting to be recast into zombie thralls

1 comment:

  1. ... and then there is this tidbit: