Report from 1st quest of the Northeners.
It is hard to tell what is real anymore, or what was before. I was sure I'd break a leg when I fell into that cave. But when I gained my senses back and woke up from another night/day full off nightmares, the leg felt actually better. There was still a pretty bad wound on it. Luckily, no broken bones.
I used moonshine to wash it and ripped some of my rags to tie it up. The evil aura still lingered around the shrine. Actually it felt somehow stronger. I should leave.
Day (or days?) later I was running. Something was after me. Some invisible horror. Full of fear, I kept on running. Suddenly in front of me a high cliff full of sharp rocks appeared, below a large mass of dark waters.
I looked down and saw some sort of vessel. I couldn't outrun what the fuck ever was after me and I didn't want find out what it was. I hesitated a bit. Then I'd made up my mind. I gathered my strength and jumped. I spashed into the waters with minor injuries only. I was able to reach the vessel. Kayak actually.
Call that a lucky find! Even if I'm not really skilled in swimming or paddling, I thought I could lose my pursuer by following the coast line to some place a bit safer.
My luck turned. The currents of the dark waters were too strong and my body too weak. So I drifted off, farer and farer from the shore. Completely lost in fog. Water running out. Hungry. No idea what time or day it is. I have been paddling for hours. My body hurts. I'm going to die here.
The Great Machine has only talked with me while I sleep. Could I reach it awake? I feel my sanity slipping away, and like in deep trance, I carved a gear shaped cut on the back of my hand. I used the pocket knife I had found in one of those lockers. I chanted "koneeseen kadonnuta, ei voi takaisin saada. Osa konetta. Koneenosa. Osa konetta. Koneenosa."
I have no idea where these words came from but it felt as if I had known them for ages. Blood dripping. Waves splashing. And the precence of the Great Machine filled me. "COME AND SEE. THE GREAT MACHINE PROTECTS."
I saw the light of the Great Machine and it gave me the strength to carry on. Another day on the waters. Madness deepens. Was it real? Is the machine real? If it protects, then why am I still paddling in mist, with no hope of surviving.
I decided to repeat the ritual. I carved another gear next to the one from before, this time a bit larger and deeper. Again I bathe in the presence of the Machine heart. This time, there were signs to follow. Finally I see land ahead. I was able to get ashore.
I fell on my knees, yelled out loud: "With this blood, I devote myself to you, Great Machine God. You are true and pure, I shall do your will, I shall embrace you and bring others to you. I am part of the machine."
I carved a third gear next to the two before. Too deep. Almost.
I can hear the sound of flowing waters. Followed it through the dark of night and found a waterfall of fresh water. I drank so much. I bathed. Strangely the pain of my wounds felt better.
Still bathing, I suddenly felt pain of something sharp pointing my neck. I turned around and there was a human pointing at me with an arrow and a bow. Woman actually. Beautiful but scary. I screamed and tried to escape but that didn't go well.
The woman was going to shoot me. I surrendered. Butt naked I was taken to her camp, a bit farther away. In the camp there was a man, too. Big savage bastard that could split me in two pieces just with his hands.
Åra and Mantra were the names they called each other. Some sort of hunters, I assume. The woman was their leader and the man her protector. They had me tied up. The woman was asking me questions of my orgins while the man was setting up some fire. The warmth felt so good.
I told her everything. She didn't tell me a lot back. But maybe i will know later. I need to gain their trust first. Naked, famined, wounded and exhausted I wasn't really a threat to them.
The woman treated my wounds after I had finished my story. She is some sort of witch! My wounds sealed up in front of my eyes! Witch could totally help me find the Machine God, even though she seems completely clueless about.
Like I was talking complete nonsense. But she is a fool. The Great Machine is real. I got here being guided by the Machine. It is real. She is just a part of the gears. She saved my life so I owe her. I'm going to serve the witch until my debt is payed.
The Great Machine protects.
Koneeseen kadonnutta ei voi takaisin saada.