Category Archives: All World Politics & Locations

Details different forms of politics and locations.

The Master Assassins

The Masters are a group of eight assassins directly under Fenrir. They form the Council that convenes at times in Ganpon. There are two masters for each Domain, one Senior Master and one Junior Master. The Junior Masters are usually newly promoted wolves and are generally younger than the Senior Masters. The oldest Master, aside from Fenrir, is Baghdad at the age of 65. The youngest Master is Sparta at the age of 15. She was also the youngest Master in the history of the order. The Junior Masters are also the partners of the Senior Masters as they are equals and each watches one half of their shared Domain.

In the event a Senior Master is removed from their post due to death or demotion, the Junior Master is elevated to Senior Master status. Very rarely are Junior Masters passed over for that promotion but it depends on various factors and is decided by the Council, the final say coming from Fenrir. Sparta became a Junior Master because her predecessor under Athens was conspiring against him, seeking to kill him and become Senior Master. Athens found out and reported it to Fenrir who had that Junior Master removed and killed. Sparta was the only wolf in the East who showed the most promise as a leader and was made Athens’ new partner despite her young age.

There are four females and four males on the Council. Below are the names, wolf types, ages, branches, and statuses of the eight Masters. Included is Fenrir for comparison.

Pompeii is a 30-year-old red wolf assassin and Senior Master of the North. She watches the Far North in Genbu’s territory. Her partner is Cairo, a 23-year-old Tundra wolf assassin and the Junior Master of the North. He watches the southern half of Genbu’s territory.

Athens is a 45-year-ol Eastern wolf assassin and Senior Master of the East. He watches the Far East in Seiryu’s territory. His partner is Sparta, a 15-year-old Indian wolf assassin and the Junior Master of the East. She watches the western half of Seiryu’s territory.

Baghdad is a 65-year-old Arabian wolf assassin and Senior Master of the South. He watches the Far South of Suzaku’s territory. His partner is Thyatira, a 33-year-old Tibetan wolf assassin and the Junior Master of the South. She watches the northern half of Suzaku’s territory.

Thessalonica is a 40-year-old Eurasian wolf assassin and Senior Master of the West. She watches the Far West of Byakko’s territory. Her partner is Corinth, a 26-year-old Arctic wolf assassin and the Junior Master of the West. He watches the eastern half of Byakko’s territory.

Lastly, there’s Fenrir, the 4500-year-old dire wolf assassin and the Grandmaster of the Order. His territory is strictly Ganpon, the capital of the Human Empire in Suzaku’s South. He has no partner but his three most trusted assassins are Rome, Syracuse, and Damascus. Their ages and wolf types are unknown, though it’s rumored that Damascus isn’t a wolf at all but a dog bred to look like a dire wolf, the American Alsatian.

There is some weight to the rumor as Damascus is always used as Fenrir’s decoy and enemies who walked away alive confirmed it was him at first before Fenrir showed himself. He’s not as big as Fenrir but of all assassins, he’s the closest in size and appearance to him. How a dog could be a transformer is the great mystery and Damascus himself usually calls himself an overlarge wolf. Other rumors say that he’s a true dire wolf like his master but Fenrir is quick to affirm that he is the last of the giant transforming wolves. Still other rumors state that Damascus is the son of Fenrir, hence his resemblance to the ancient Grandmaster. All World may never know the truth behind him.

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Fenrir, The Assassin Order of Wolves, and The Fenrir Conspiracy

I’ve written on Fenrir before but I decided to give a bit more info on the ancient Grandmaster, his Order,  and an old conspiracy theory surrounding him. The bits detailing more on Fenrir and the Order were originally going to be two separate posts but I might as well consolidate them all into one.

As written before, Fenrir is the ancient Grandmaster of the Assassin Order of Wolves (AOW). He’s the only dire wolf assassin left in the world (since the dires of Island Reptilia are normal, non-transforming dires). All his subordinates are extant species (arctic, grey, etc.). His mortal enemy is Altair, himself the Grandmaster of the Roc Assassin Order (RAO) and is part of a one-sided rivalry with Gilgamesh the werewolf.

The Fenrir Conspiracy is an old theory that’s as old as Fenrir himself. The theory is that the Fenrir name is merely a smokescreen and that Fenrir isn’t really as old as he is, or even a dire assassin. Hardcore believers think that the Grandmaster isn’t the same wolf through all of history. The first mention of Fenrir dates back 4,500 years ago and has been noted in historical events ever since. They discredit that a being that isn’t a High King or the Shogun could have lived for so long. They think that the original Fenrir was so good at what he did, his name became a useful tool and has been used by successors to the Grandmaster title.

A major hole in the theory is that whenever Fenrir moves on a target or gets publicly involved in anything, his methods never change. If he was just one of many successors to the Grandmaster title, historical records would reflect that. Each assassin under him have their own style. Fenrir is different because his style never changes. Part of the hole is that assassins find a style that suits them and they stick with it. They become so ingrained in their way of doing things that they are adverse to learning someone else’s style, even to keep up a ruse. Because history blatantly states that the style of Grandmaster Fenrir is always the same, it further proves that Fenrir truly is an ancient wolf.

Despite the evidence, there are still hardcore believers in the Fenrir Conspiracy. Neither Fenrir nor the Order attempts to quash the theory because it’s actually a very useful tool. If Fenrir needs a decoy, he’ll ask a trusted assassin in his branch to take his name and place. He’s not without his fun side and relishes revealing himself as the true Grandmaster to his enemies. It’s often the last mistake they make. While he enjoys using the conspiracy theory for his own ends, he can’t abide anyone who abuses his name. Aside from his intended targets, Fenrir has also made unsanctioned kills on imposters. Despite a rather negative profession, Fenrir has a good reputation, honor, and sense of justice. Imposters are usually criminals who use his name to commit crimes and to control towns and villages through fear. The Grandmaster regularly sends out warnings, reminding the entire Continent of the price imposters pay if they’re caught by the Order.

Thought not without his merciful side, sparing an imposter found guilty of using his name depends on Fenrir’s mood at the time. It also depends on the severity of the crimes committed in his name. Extreme cases where he kills imposters with no mercy are those who oppress towns and villages and a number of immoral crimes, like rape. Other cases result in him letting the fakes off the hook up to three times or imprisonment. Very few imposters caught by the Order are actually used as informants. These informants understand Fenrir’s desire to keep his name clean and they requested that in order to make up for their wrongdoing, that they be allowed to live and to keep the Order informed of things they may not be aware of. A number of things in remote towns and villages were brought to the Order’s attention through informants. An example would be  a case from 200 years ago where an imposter was using Fenrir’s name in order to rape women without consequence. Fenrir personally had that man held in the branch house nearest the victimized town until he could arrive from Ganpon and deliver the death sentence himself.

Fenrir runs a tight Order. While he is the Grandmaster of the entire Order, he has a council of eight Master Assassins under him to run the branches around the Continent. Each Domain has two branches, covering north and south of each Domain. The Masters must send word to Ganpon if they feel a decision is beyond their power. Certain imposters, for instance, did such heinous crimes using Fenrir’s name, that the Masters who had them imprisoned didn’t know if their authority was enough to warrant extreme punishment. They would send a case file to Ganpon for Fenrir to look over and he would tell them what they could or could not do to the prisoner. In a few cases, like what was written before, a few special cases warranted Fenrir to appear in person and deliver the punishment.

Any and all major missions, usually the assassination of regional government officials, also must be sent to and approved by Fenrir before the mission is a go. He’ll report it to the Emperor or Empress and ask for their opinion of the matter. Though the Order is an autonomous entity with their own laws and lies outside the laws of the Human Empire and other Nations, Fenrir makes it a point to discuss high end assassinations with whoever is in charge of the perpetrator’s race. He allows them to make the final call and he gives the order. If he feels that an assassination is the only way, he’ll circumvent requests for his wolves not to kill a perpetrator.When a previous Empress was revealed to be a very corrupt woman who abused her power to the point that the Empire nearly fell apart, Fenrir disregarded the human council’s pleas for her to be spared on the grounds that she was pregnant with the next heir. He personally planted the dagger that ended her life as well as the life of her child and forced her husband to abdicate the throne, allowing her younger brother to succeed the throne. That mission made him infamous for quite some time because he didn’t show mercy to an unborn child.

The High Kings themselves usually don’t discipline Fenrir, because they trust his judgement. His judgement has rarely ever been wrong and they have faith in his ability to do the right thing. The case of the corrupt Empress shook their faith in him however. He was subjected to his first and only inquiry in his long life by the High Kings and the Council of Myth. He defended his decision on the grounds that if the Empress were allowed to live, she would’ve destroyed the Empire. When asked why he didn’t spare her until her child was born, Fenrir gave no answer aside from saying that he had to serve the greater good. If the Empress were allowed to live long enough to give birth to her child, it would’ve been too late to save the Empire. Her brother was a better man for the job and was hard at work at repairing the damage. Though conflicted at his lack of mercy for a unborn child, the High Kings let Fenrir go with a severe promise that they would personally take his head if this happened again.

The Order mostly deals with the Human Empire but has been called in by the animal Nations if needed. They are considered the Empire’s elite guard. Internal corruption and ineffectual leadership in the Order is kept quiet from the outside world. Fenrir makes an annual round trip to all the branches of the Order, making sure the Masters follow the code. If he suspects a Master of either corruption or ineffective leadership when he’s not around, he’ll ask his most trusted assassins from his own branch in Ganpon to infiltrate the offending branch and keep an eye on the Master. If the Master is found to be ineffectual or corrupt, they are removed from their post (by force if necessary) and a list of nominees is sent by that branch’s rank and file for Fenrir to look over. He’ll choose a new Master based on performance, leadership skills, and qualifications. Ineffectual Masters are merely demoted while corrupt Masters are brought before Fenrir and the other Masters for an inquiry. Punishments vary from demotion, banishment, and in extreme cases, death. It’s the general attitude of the Order that it’s better to be demoted and lose a little honor than it is to be found guilty of corruption and lose everything.

Next post will detail Fenrir’s relationship with Altair and the Roc Assassin Order.

The Great Desert/Sanctuary

I was rereading something and was inspired to give a little blurb on one of All World’s defining geological features. It’s known as the Great Desert. It’s a gigantic expanse of sand that covers a good portion of Seiryu’s East along the border to Genbu’s North. It has a bad reputation though well-earned. I’ll tell you how it came into existence as well as why it has been reputed as a dangerous place.

Back in the beginning, the Great Desert was called Sanctuary. It was where the Almighty breathed life into the world and where all creatures and plants of the earth had their beginning. Sanctuary is the birthplace of the Kings, the Shogun, and the Sovereign as well as the forerunners of all creatures, including humans. In the garden that it was, there two special trees. The Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. When the Descent occurred and the human forerunners were banished,  Sanctuary was guarded by the Almighty’s flaming Sacred Sword. It guarded the Tree of Life and Sanctuary became a forbidden place. When the Landless Time buried the Continent and Island Reptilia underwater, Sanctuary was destroyed and reverted to a desert after the waters receded. Legends tell that the Sword of the Almighty still stands guard where it was placed. Legends also say that the dead remains of both the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil still stand. The flood waters had uprooted and drowned many, many tree but those two in particular were two of the very few whose roots prevented that from happening.

The Great Desert, as it came to be called, became associated with evil because those who wandered into it seeking the Trees never came out again, even if they went in fully prepared with food and water. It’s also the only place in All World that is truly dead. Nothing grows or lives in it. Shogun Yamata no Orochi claimed the desert as his territory because his duty is to prevent others from entering it and to find those struck down by the Sacred Sword and reunite them with their souls. That is the Sword’s ability. It cuts down any and all who manage to find it and the remains of the Trees. The souls cut free from their flesh are stuck in sort of limbo until Orochi is able to use his God-given ability to reunite them with theirs bodies.

Over the course of the six thousand year history All World has seen since its formation, the numbers of wanderers into the Great Desert number only in the low one-hundreds, a vast majority being humans.  Orochi himself is successful 95% of the time at turning the curious away from the desert. The other 5% were those who either disregarded his warning or never met up with the gigantic eight-headed serpent. Orochi is not permitted to violently prevent anyone from entering his territory. He can do little more than to warn the curious of the dangers but the choice is ultimately up to them.  Out of all those who went in and met their fate from the Sword, Orochi was successful in saving all of them except thirty. Those thirty souls weren’t found in time. Their bodies expired and the souls were taken into Paradise. The Shogun, as written in his bio, originally had no intention of policing the border to the Great Desert but was compelled into service.

Though Orochi has immunity from the Sword’s soul-rending power, even he dares not enter the Desert unless needed. The Sword acts of its own accord and has attacked him every time he came to retrieve a body rent of its soul. The Almighty had granted the Shogun special armor that he wears at all times to make the serpent well-protected from the duty-bound Sword. Orochi is always uneasy in its holy presence because he is evil by virtue of All World’s fallen state and the Sword strikes down all evil that comes across it. Innocent or vile, it makes no difference. All who live in a fallen world are judged the same by the Sword.

The Almighty has told the Kings that when All World’s clock ticks down to zero, He would remove the Sword from its place in the Great Desert and that would be the sign that the end was at hand. As the Desert is in Seiryu’s Domain, the dragon King has made it his unending duty to keep a close watch on the sword from his Castle, via the Seer’s Ball. Even ancients like himself fear the Desert and the Sword within but they haven’t forgotten Sanctuary, their birthplace. Their hope is to see it again in Paradise when things finally tick down to zero and are reset.

Jackalopes and Jackalope Hollow

Jackalopes have always interested me, mainly because they’re not mythological. It believed that jackalope legends arose when people saw rabbits with the Shope papilloma virus, which causes horn and antler-like growths on the rabbit’s head and body. My jackalopes take on some characteristics from local tales around the US. They’re able to imitate human voices and they’re often hunted for their antler racks. My jackalopes have one thing in common with caribou as both males and females have antlers. The antlers themselves looked the antlers of a whitetail deer. It’s not known if they lose their antlers during the winter or not. Jackalopes are so rarely seen, study on them is limited.

My jackalopes are an evasive race and given their small size, their power to transform is hardly used as the antlers and ears remain in the human form. In their true forms, their ears stand straight up but in a human form, the ears take on the flopped position seen in lop-eared rabbits. The antlers are difficult if not impossible to hide in a human form so jackalopes hardly take the form of a human for that reason. They live in communities around the entire Continent, one of the more prominent ones being Jackalope Hollow in Suzaku’s South and located in the Crête Isolée region. The communities are governed by a chief. Their culture is derived from Native Americans. The size of a jackalope’s antlers is proportional to their size so they aren’t overly big or heavy. They’re often decorated with various things. Jackalopes are preyed on by the foxes but both sides know that its part of the cycle.

Jackalope Hollow is one of the larger tribes. The Hollow is surrounded by large redwoods and the roots themselves interweave to create a barrier that’s hard to break through, making the Hollow a very safe place. The former Chief was Swift Antler but his position as both Chief of Jackalope Hollow and as a Council of Myth member were handed down to Fleet Foot. Swift Antler had grown too old and retired from his post. Chiefs can either be voted into power or it can be handed down through a family. It varies from tribe to tribe. Jackalope Hollow is one of the few tribes where the chief can select his own successor without the tribe voting on it. Swift Antler’s family had been killed years before by a fox hunting party so he had no heirs. Fleet Foot was one of Swift Antler’s students and the best he thought for the job.

As a jackalope hardly uses his magic to take a human form, their area of expertise is using their magic in their voice mimicry. They’re not known for fighting but it’s no uncommon for them to be used in wars as messengers given their speed and evasiveness. They generally make themselves scarce during times of war so messenger jackalopes are the bravest of their kind, not afraid to take messages in the thick of battle.

I may do a post on foxes but the story was centered around them has been canceled. I may yet bring them back.

The Council of Myth

The Council of Myth is a group of transformers that convene whenever there’s an issue that could affect the whole Continent. I’ve used it at least once, in the pilot story. The Council had to convene because a human named Jen was plotting to overthrow the Imperial Family, for understandable reasons. There’s more info in the post on Judge Krakatau.

The members are different most of the time because they don’t convene a whole lot. The Kings are the exception. They have to be at every meeting if possible. Since they age but never die, it’s best for them to be in attendance to guide the other members. The last Gathering had the Kings, Eupe Obawa the pterripus, Vertigo the pegasus, Pureza the unicorn, Judge Krakatau, Kitsune the fox,  Fleet Foot the jackalope, and Tartarus the griffin adviser to the Emperor. They were also joined by a Death’s Head horse named Reaper who wasn’t a member of that Council. He was more of a device to say that Death follows you everywhere but Reaper isn’t evil. He’s my way of saying that Death knows no good or evil and Death never messes around on the job. Reaper appears to be living but if he touches you, you can see his true form. Since the pilot, the Death’s Heads’ use has been discontinued.

The Coucil convenes in Vale des Lebens, the last pocket of an area unchanged from the Old World. The Vale is located deep in Verboden Waaier and is impossible to find except by those who know where it is. The Vale managed to survive the Landless Time unscathed due to one being. Orochi, the Shogun I’ve written of before, wasn’t on the Ark when the waters came. No one knows for sure how he survived. Not even he knows. The Kings hypothesized that the reason he did survive and the reason the Vale was undamaged from being underwater were linked. They theorized that Orochi probably didn’t get to the Ark on time before the door closed or he was being bullheaded as always and didn’t want to show up.

The theory goes that the Almighty knew what Orochi was up to and somehow trapped him in the Vale, putting him in suspended animation. The Vale was then protected by a shield from the flood waters which covered every square inch of land. Orochi was held in the Vale for the forty days and nights that the rains fell and for however long it took for the water to recede. All that is known that after the water cleared off, the Kings were told by the Almighty about Orochi and where to find him. They headed to the Vale to see the giant eight-headed snake just as he was coming out of statis. They asked what happened to him but his memory was fuzzy. All he remembered was hanging around the Vale before everything went black. He had a bit of a shock to learn he had survived a global flood untouched.

Since the Landless Time left the Vale untouched, it was decided that it would be the meeting place for the Council of Myth. Suzaku described it as “their very own Garden of Eden”. Truthfully the Vale is a small slice of what Sanctuary used to be before the Flood destroyed it and turned it into the Great Desert. It’s well protected from the outside world through a combination of Verboden Waaier’s reputation and the difficulty is to find it. Only one known human has known to see the Veil and that was Anna, Krakatau’s human love interest. The Council did a follow-up meeting after Jen was stopped to decide what to do with him. It was decided that Anna attend that meeting to make it seem less biased. A human should be able to help decide the fate of a human under scrutiny from a council of transforming animals.

Other times the Council convened in the past was during some of the major wars. The War of Lords, in which the Lords of Air, Sea, and Earth were slain, was one such war.  They sometimes convene if the Imperial Royal Family has issues with succession. They also serve as watchdogs for the Family so that all Emperors/Empresses follow the law and weed out corruption.

My next blog will talk about another less used animal idea: jackalopes and Jackalope Hollow.

Nimbus, Leviathan Lord of the Sea

Nimbus is another character who passed over to All World from the world that came before. I overhauled and re-purposed him for his new incarnation. He went from a blue-green sea serpent to a blind Leviathan (still the same creature by any other name) whose color scheme is that of an orca/killer whale. He’s roughly 4,500 years old and was born after the Age of Ice. His long life made Nimbus extremely jaded and he had it in for the human race for many, many years. He was born blind for a reason.

The Almighty had to choose three new Lords (of the Air, Sea, and Earth) after the forerunners of the Ziz, Behemoth, and Leviathan races went to war with each other for an unknown reason and were slain by a Heavenly Unseen sent with that mission. It was foretold to the Kings that the new Lord of the Sea would be born after the Age of Ice. The Almighty reached into time and took Nimbus’s sight away while he was growing in his egg. Nimbus soon hatched and was thrust into a battle for survival. As predicted, the Leviathan became genocidal towards humanity for the state of All World, having fallen over 2,000 years before he hatched. Nimbus’s life-long wish was to have seen the world in its perfect state, an All World before the Descent. The only thing stopping Nimbus was his blindness. He was unable to leave the sea and wage his war against humans. His blindness didn’t stop him from sinking ships entering his territory, the Grey Sea off the coast of Suzaku’s South.

Despite his handicap, Nimbus is still a formidable and dangerous fighter. He utilizes echolocation to see where he’s going and having survived as long as he has is a feat few others could match, never mind his destiny for Lordship. Over the millennia, Nimbus’s genocidal tendencies and overall attitude waned to grudgingly accepting he didn’t have the power to change the past. He was born into a fallen world and he knew he was going to die in a fallen world. He still picks off ships when his ugly mood rears his head but nowadays, ships can sail through the Grey Sea without being harassed by a Leviathan with a huge chip on his shoulder.

Nimbus was very antisocial, even to his own kind. Leviathans raise their pups to adulthood but once they’re able to survive on their own, family ties break down and they become competitors for prey. While as sentient and sapient as the other powerful races, Leviathans are less likely to form groups. The only other Leviathan they are willing to share their territory with is their mates and they mate for life. Nimbus’s blindness made him a prime target among his kind but having defeated his enemies and protected his territory, he’s become a well-respected being.

One theory to the Leviathan race’s overall hostility to their own kind most likely came from the fact that the first Sea Lord, Hiamovi, had been killed. He united the Leviathan Nation under his rule, despite natural competition. His death drove his kind into hiding and their overall natures as fierce, territorial beings came to the forefront. In the intervening years between Hiamovi and his successor, Nimbus, the Leviathans nearly drove themselves to extinction.

Nimbus came into contact with Isis, the half-dragon daughter of Judge Krakatau when she and her future husband, Kemet, came to aid Suzaku when the alchemist Nomad was after the Firestone, a powerful stone which helped Suzaku unite his kind under his rule. He had a well-known hatred for hybrids such as Isis, thinking that beings should keep their own races. He sees chimeras in the same light. Isis, however, softened his heart and taught that love knows no race. In spite of himself, Nimbus fell in love with her but he was wise enough to know that Kemet was destined to be her husband. He has since met and fallen in love with a female Leviathan named Cirrus.

Nimbus’s blindness probably makes him the most unbiased being on the face of All World in terms of things like beauty. Using his sonar and his hands (in a human form), he can form a picture in his mind of what he’s “seeing”. However, beauty and color are foreign concepts to him, thanks to the fact there was never a time he could see with his eyes.  He’s a judge of character so if he finds you likable, you’ve been paid a high compliment.

Nimbus came into his destiny as the new Sea Lord along with his new allies, Azariah the Behemoth and Tobias the Ziz. They were destined to be the new Lords of the Earth and Sky, respectively. The three races had a long history of hatred against each other because of the previous Lords’ deaths. They didn’t know it was Heavenly Unseen who killed them. It was destiny of the chosen ones to bridge the gap between the races and put the past to rest. Nimbus rules the world’s oceans from the Sea Lord’s Keep, a fortress off the coast of Genbu’s North. Upon Hiamovi’s death, the Keep sank into the sea to await the new Lord and the stone Watchers (in Hiamovi’s image) prevented trespassers from entering the Keep. When Nimbus made Lord, he proved it to his kind by raising the Keep. The Watchers remade themselves in Nimbus’s image. The new Lord then had Cirrus become his Lady.

Under Nimbus’s leadership, the Leviathan race has slowly come out of hiding and is slowly rebuilding. They’ll likely never reach the numbers they had many millennia ago but it’s a start. With the extinction of the Giant Sharks, aka C. megalodon, and millennia of in-fighting, the great race lost not only their top threat (which was mutual for the sharks) but also a great deal of their gene pool. The three Great Races are experiencing a drastic genetic bottleneck they may never recover from. But with time, things may balance out again. I hope to explore more with them in future stories.