Heaven’s Ash

Rising above the surrounding hills and forests like mountains in their own right, the grandest emanations of Syjéral and the greatest of the kami serving the daughters of Sylithandríël are the lórréra, the World Trees.

Far above any dryad, naiad, or lesser emanation, the scattered handful of lórréra work together with the mechal elementals produced and commanded by the dweomerbergs to manage the planetary ecology.

A massive, mountain-sized tree with a blue glow hovering around its branches.

The World Trees, like the lesser dryads, are trees at heart, albeit unusually large and healthy ones, optimized to produce through their natural processes the energy needed to support their other functions. Each of the lórréra is, beneath the bark, an unthinkably complex biocomputer composed of complex arrays and meshes of lignoneurons laid down within the xylem. This system and its animating intelligence are sufficient to model in real-time a complete picture of the lands, woods, and waters around the lórréra, and make such adjustments as the model calls for to maintain stability.

The lórréra exist in a world of continuous communication. They exist as major relays within the same delicate electromagnetic tapestry as the other mechal elementals, with metallic deposits embedded in their lignoneuron-stived xylem serving as their antennae, of course, but more subtly they are participants in the complex web of ecological communication around them. In this, the obvious bluelife bioluminescence is the least part; the intertwining roots and rhizomes of a mature lórréra can cover half a continent, and in doing so, touch all the life thereupon with chemical signals of breathtaking subtlety.

Is it any wonder, then, that we, too, should have learned to communicate with them, and they with us? While thaumaturgical lore – the knowledge of the mechal elementals and the art of reading and commanding them – remains well documented, there remain only fragments of its origins, and that of much other ecological and silvicultural lore – in the shamanic practices of the Emergence, going back into the Gloaming, when eldrae first learned to underhear the electromagnetic whispers of the World Trees, and to attempt deeper communion with nature by crude pagan rituals involving the consumption of their sweet, nanite-rich sap.

(It is also from fragments dating from the Emergence that we have the tale of one Sárvis, called “the Ill-Wit”, who commanded the tribe of which he was king to fell one of the World Trees that he might build for himself “a hall like none other that ever was, or ever would be.” Upon attempting this, his tribe were plagued by ills “as if all the spirits of nature rose against them”, until Sárvis pledged himself to be slain among the branches of the offended lórréra to appease its wrath. The surviving fragments do not record the success or failure of this gambit, or whether or not his people survived.

None have attempted to repeat such grand folly in all the centuries since.)

– A History of Nature’s Artifice and the Thaumaturgy of Machines,
Enneagram Press

Notable Replies

  1. Does the term ‘Emergence’ refer to the return to the surface after the Winter of Nightmares?

  2. Good thought (and in fairness, people who specialize in that historical subfield probably call that the Emergence too), but no. The Winter of Nightmares was around -14.5 ky; the Emergence was around -18 ky.

    The oldest evidence of civilization or sophoncy (other than the Precursors) on Eliéra dates back to this age. Ancient scholars once believed that this was the time at which Eliéra was created (by the Precursors) due to this lack of evidence, but were replaced over time by more analytical minds determined to search for factual evidence of what occurred in the era of the Gloaming, between the fall of the Precursors and this time.

    Basically, it’s the period that the very oldest standing stones/cave paintings/other civilizational relics can be dated to. The start of pre-Imperial history, if you will, ending the Era of Elder Races and starting the Era of Hand and Fire that covers everything from the Emergence through to the Founding.

    Looking backward, everything between the Emergence and the fall of the Precursors is referred to as the Gloaming, the lost age of eldraeic prehistory from which not even fragmented legends remain.

  3. Oops. Yeah, sometimes I forget to take links to my internal wiki out when I quote from it.

Continue the discussion at eldraeverse.discourse.group

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