On the Backs of Gods
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On the Backs of Gods
On 6th February 2012, /tg/ was greeted by yet another "see this, wat do" thread, featuring a picture of a craggy colossus seemingly raping a giantess in a valley.
Since /tg/ is naturally awesome, it took the idea and ran with it for multiple threads, developing a setting in which humans colonize the bodies of sentient giants and aid them in elaborate mating rituals whilst trying to survive the perils of living on a massive, unknowable being that's barely aware of them.
Setting Directions currently include: Probably quadruped giants, but bipeds also included, some giants exhibit herding behaviors, forming mobile nations, ground dwelling people are hardy and nomadic, possibly spider-riding mongols, builders of mighty walking castles etc, a little bit of writefaggotry about finding mates for the giants, the offspring of which will have a new city built on their back as they develop, and general talking about how giants boning would affect the cities on their backs. Also Wanderer is confirmed for possible BBEG concept.
About the world
There are three kinds of giant beings.
- World Walkers - The largest of the two and the largest beings in the setting, they are inhabited by entire nation-states. They are aware of humans in roughly the same way that humans are aware of the bacteria living on our skin. Humans preform a similar role to bacteria - to use up space and resources so that "pathogens" can't. Humans are essentially incapable of communicating with the them. The population ranges from roughly one to four dozen at a time, and the world is big enough so that they may only meet another once every few years, despite that they're far and away the largest things in the setting. World Walkers are divided into two sub-types:
- Colossi - Typically non-humanoid and made out of stone, metal and other inert materials. Their populations often carve cities right into their bodies.
- Titans - Made out of flesh and are generally more humanoid than their cousins. They wear clothing that its people inhabit. Female Titans tend to have their cities inside hollow jewelry, on anything that can be discarded or won't be damaged, considering the dangers involved in the foundation of your country suddenly being mounted by another one. Also because people living on the inside of spheres and toroids is cool.
- Giants - Significantly smaller than World Walkers and aren't actually related to the them. They support much smaller populations than the World Walkers, generally around only a few households at most. Due to their smaller size however it's possible for them to communicate with each other to a certain degree. When it becomes apparent that the Giant is looking for something, be it food, a mate or any other number of desires, it's population will send out scouts to try and find it. When it comes to mates, this involves making inhabitants of other Giants aware that there is one out looking and to prepare themselves. When they return, the inhabitants preform a ritual to make the Giant aware of their findings. They're never quite sure if it has any real effect, but they do it regardless because it is good for the community.
- The Nightmare - The one apex predator of the world. It is the only thing capable of threatening a World Walker, aside from other Walkers. The Nightmare actually named The World-Shaper. But but it's more commonly called The Nightmare, which is a lot more fitting name, as it's basically the scariest fucking thing to ever exist to the people of the setting. It is a large, uninhabited monstrosity that preys on World Walkers, and is basically the scariest fucking thing to ever exist to the regular people of the setting. It does actually serve a useful purpose in that it is the only thing that can kill a Walker. Since the world can only support a few dozen Walkers at a time, and while a successful breeding happens rarely, it does happen (And they don't really age and die either), so The Nightmare works as a kind of population control.
Humanity's tech-level is at a fantasy standard (peasants, farming, etc.), but with a dash of steampunk (airships, dirigibles and whatnot for trade and contact between Walkers).
As a Boogie Knight, I often get called upon to set out in search of a mate for Our Goddess, The Walker Lelina. It is no easy task, let me assure you.
At dawn on the day of my quest's beginning, I set off for the Feet, a journey of many days that is traditionally undertaken on foot without rest. There, I recuperate for a day after a week's hard travelling, before donning the ceremonial armour and robes of station and setting off on the voyage proper.
I cast off from the Feet on an airship, a small two-person dirigible. The other "person" is actually just enough supplies and Disposable Locomotion Enchantments to see me through to another Walker, and so the journey is a lonely one.
Once I eventually find another Walker, I dock at the Feet (or equivalent). I am greeted with the respect my station as a Boogie Knight deserves, and then I set off for the capital of this new God.
I am brought to the capital and presented to the King or Queen of the Walker. This person, part head of state and part religious leader, listens to my message: Our Goddess is fertile, able to bear children. We would like a union between our nations, between our Walker Gods, such that new fruit can be seeded, new land grown and a new Walker - a new nation - born.
Oftentimes, I am rejected. Resources are scarce, or the public is in turmoil, or one of any number of inauspicious signs. Only when a community is in a moment of perfect harmony can the King of the Walker spare the lengthy amount of time needed to communicate with their God.
If these conditions are met, I am welcomed to a room in the royal quarters. I quickly make myself at home; when the King communes with his Walker, it can take months for the conversation to advance to the necessary point. Eventually, the two come to an accord - most usually in my favour, though some Walkers have been known to refuse, though none can guess as to why - and the Walker ponderously halts. I then journey to the Feet, this time accompanied by a royal procession that lasts for months and travels to every major settlement between there and the Crown.
I take off with new supplies and a response to my message, and after many more months of journeying alone, I arrive, finally, at Our Goddess, the Walker Lelina. There, I am greeted as a hero; I am permitted to dock at the Crown itself (the only time such a thing is ever permitted), and I then speak to the Queen of the Walker.
"My lady," I would say. "Your Boogie Knight has returned, and he bears good news. The Walker Ospileth has accepted Our Goddess, the Walker Lelina's offer of courtship, and the nation of Ospileth will join with ours for a time. A new Walker shall come of this union, and a new nation shall be born!"
At my proclamation, much jubilation arises, but the preparations for an even greater jubilation (and, more importantly, for The Mounting) begin.
David shivered at a gust of biting wind, crossing his arms tightly beneath his woolen jacket. Leaning in to the wind, he quickened his pace, eager to escape the open air and bitter cold. The morning was clear and bright, save for a few errant wisps of fog that still clung to the craggy upper reaches. Distant dirigibles scudded through the blue sky, sunlight glinting off their steel frames.
Turning a corner in the rough-hewn road, a grin spread across David's face as the city of Redmount spread across his view. Built right into the stone sides of their Walker, the cities ancient buildings seemed to crawl up the sides of mountain, stacked endlessly atop one another. Bright banners and flags snapped smartly, advertising noble breweries, general stores, renowned gunsmiths, and the myriad other businesses that had sprung up. The narrow streets were packed with innumerable crowds, flowing up and down and inwards and outwards. The noise of their movement was clear even from the bottom of the city, where David stood.
With a spring to his step, the boy skipped into the city, one hand firmly over his coat pocket. It wasn't often that he had coin to spare, and he was determined to make the most of what he had. Hopefully, if he had more delivery jobs like this one, he would get to make more trips into the city. Maybe he would even be able to buy some sweets from the confectioner, if he had money to spare at the end of the day!
A rumble filled the earth then, and a great grinding sound, as though a boulder where being smashed against a cliff face. With a colossal thunder, the city lurched forward, sending unwary pedestrians stumbling to their knees. Loose furniture and goods were thrown into the air, pelting unfortunates with leftover lunches and silverware.
David weathered the lurching movement with the ease of long practice, one hand latched onto a steel rail, his stance wide. Within seconds of their commencement, the great rumbling stopped, allowing the grumbling of the crowd to be heard once more. "That's 'is third step today," A wiry old dock worker said admiringly, "He mus' be feelin' sprightly." David nodded wisely at the statement, then promptly forgot the whole occasion. He had an important job to do, after all.
Glancing at the burden he carried once more, David cast about the street, searching for a building marked with the same insignia. Although he could not read the signs that marked every street corner, David had wandered the cities streets many times, and had come to navigate more by instinct than conscious thought. It was the work of mere minutes before the boy discovered his target.
A sharp rap on the door summoned a portly, well attired servant, who regarded the scruffy boy with an expression of distaste. "Evenin' sir," David began, drawing himself up self-consciously. "I's been hired to deliver this package to yer' home. ' Was told I'd be paid for me services." The last part was lie, David had been paid in advance. But it was always worth trying for a few extra coins. Holding the package out hopefully, David smiled in what he hoped was an endearing manner.
The butler gingerly accepted the package, wiping his fingers as he set it aside. "Here, boy," He said brusquely, holding out a pair of half-dollars. "A bit of payment for your troubles. Now get yourself gone." David quickly snatched the pair of coins from the servants hands, scampering off before the man could think twice about it.
Chuckling, the boy ran back into the city, eager to spend his newly acquired wealth.
Crunching eagerly on a sugary peppermint stick, David loitered at a street corner. His initial excitement at being loose in the city once more had begun to fade, replaced with the depressing knowledge that he had become a stranger. His family had vacated their home in the residential district little more than a year ago, but it might as well have been a lifetime ago to David. He recognized none of the children that scampered through these streets, and a lingering sense of loyalty to his old gang restrained him from joining them in their play.
Beginning to feel somehow cheated, David was almost ready to give up the whole excursion as a waste of time when he spotted Johnathan. The older boy was taller and ganglier than the last time David had seen him, just beginning his growth into manhood, but he was still very recognizable as the boy he had known. Jonathan, dressed in over-large dock-workers slacks, was leaning against the wall of a coffee shop, trying very hard to appear casual.
Struck by a sudden surge of nostalgia, David darted across the crowded street, eager for a friendly voice.
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