The Sanctuary of the Silver Fellowship:
The Temple of Gryphon, Justicar of Nash
The doorway you entered leads to long wide steps, which leads you down. You can hear the echoing of your footsteps, the echoing of your own heartbeat, as you walk the steps down to a large room, made of a natural cavern of silver-laced rock, yet this place is somehow...purposefully natural. The stone forms a large hollow column that leads up, allowing sunlight to be brought down to shine on a natural well in the ground.
Through the skylight above you can see the circling of birds - or perhaps something much larger - and hear their raucous cries. Down here, in this holy place, the silver in the walls seems to form a pattern too deliberate, too logical, to be coincidence. Eight small natural holes, big enough to put a hand into, are spaced equidistantly around the cavern, though you have no idea what their function is. As you're eyes adjust to the light you also see comfortable carpets, cushions, and low tables have been carefully placed in a circle around the central well, apparently for the comfort of worshippers. To the north is an opening in the cavern, leading to a wide, sun-lit grassy field filled full of wildflowers.
Back up the stairs to the south is the door you entered through.
A pristine white marble altar is here.
Look Altar: Before you lies an austere chantry made of white marble. Upon it is inset the Seal of Nash, emblazoned on a silver Aegis.
Holy symbol to be: The Silver Aegis of Gryphon
Look Up: Above you, the stone rises to a windowing chimney, the sky sapphire bright in its purity. You can see the circling of what appear to be birds, wheeling joyfully through the air.
Look Down: The stone floor is covered in thickly piled rugs, but you fancy you can almost feel the rock pulsing beneath your feet, echoing your heart's beat.
Look North: Stepping through from the mouth of the cave you find yourself in an impossibly wide grass field, with snow-capped mountains in the distance. Wildflowers bloom with holy profundity, and lend their sacred grace to this blessed location. You can feel the holiness of this place, but cannot place an identity to that feeling: it seems to be surrounding and through you, in all things different and the same.
Look south: This is an immense, wide granite door, traced with glyphs and sigils of silver and orichalcum, which leads down into the earth and up into the sky. The door is obviously of great age and significance, and it beckons to you with hidden mysteries and secrets.
Look East: Delicate rugs, silk cushions, and low tables are spaced around the room for the comfort of the Fellowship. A small hymnal book has been left open by a member of the Silver Fellowship.
Look west: On the stones of the west wall are carved The Laws of Nash, beautiful in their simplicity.
I. Thou shalt seek Perfection, choosing a Path to Him, and not straying from that Path.
II. Thou shalt not harm another Nashite, though action or inaction.
We are all on His Path, and must never do anything to harm others on that Path, whether good, evil, or neutral, Conclave, Jhereg, Chiselhammer, Watcher, or Fellowship.
III. Thou shalt praise the Name of the Lord Nash, bringing glory to Him, and answer honestly any questions put before you of Him and His ways.
A number of comfortable resting areas have been created in the space in front of the Laws, perhaps to aid in meditation upon them. Someone has left several pieces of parchment and a well of ink out, perhaps to write down a few notes.
look flowers: The flowers are lily-of-the-valley, ivory bells, silver poppies, and silver lotus.
l glyph: The glyphs are sacred, holy: the Glyphs Immolo, Praesidium, Vera (sacrifice, safety, truth)
l door: If you stare at the door for long enough, the glyphs almost seem to take meaning: they blur before your eyes until you can almost see the shape of a gryphon, protector of the mountains, defender of the peaks of knowledge and wisdom.
Look book (or hymnal)
Remembrances of Nash
Remember me, Remember me
From the day that I am born
Guide me, Nash, by your sun
Help that my heart not be torn
In haste or a fearful angry day;
But be perfect in your sight
and strongly rightful in your way.
Remember us, Remember us
That we may fly in glowing light
Na'er a darkness in our hearts-
But love for all within your sight!
And where our brothers set
Upon us with vile and hateful words,
Show us to love them yet!
Remember them, Remember them
Where all creation's set to wing
And the world must feel so fresh,
Oh Nash, to all the life you bring
Let their spirits fly in feathers,
That they may know you now,
And find the joy that makes us fly
In your knowledge, knowing how.
Remember me, Remember me
The temple walls dark and high
Remind me of your mystery
And my role underneath your sky:
To serve you without question
But know of all your joys
To see I'm closer to your heaven
And than unbelieving noise.
look parchment (or paper): Some thoughts on the nature of Nash
I was initially troubled by the idea, said often by Lord Sirak, that Nash was an evil creator, who crafted the good gods as little more than trinkets for his amusement. How can a god who can create such beauty be evil? It was Nash himself who told me the truth.
Nash was evil, as is his surviving creation, the Nash Bible (and for that reason we do not hold great importance as the other faiths do to that book)...HOWEVER, I should stress that he WAS evil. That was before he rose above this to re-create the universe. By doing so he recreated all things, himself included, and rose above any good or evil. What is left is so far above our ability to comprehend that invariably we subscribe to him the qualities most manifest to ourselves. Is it any wonder that those Nashites who follow the dark path see him as evil? He is the mirror for our own souls, and we are not able to see beyond the mirror to truly comprehend His greatness.
Since this is the case, how you see Nash says more about your own soul than His. Let your life be an example of his kindness, his compassion, his mercy.
Look birds: Those really...aren't birds, are they? Larger, much larger, and with bodies that are too large, more like a cat's body than a bird's, really...
Look well: The well at first seems to be a pit, because it is filled with nothing but blackness, but you see a slight shimmer and realize that it is indeed filled with some liquid, perhaps water, perhaps not. As you stare your reflection shimmers silvery in the flowing depths, but you seem older, wiser, and more knowledgeable. This is not a reflection of yourself, but of what you will be, what you can be. Watching the calm water is soothing, and you feel very refreshed.
Look walls: There are eight significant panels, formed by silver veins of metal running through the walls. (Type: look Panel.1, etc. to read each in turn)
The followers of Gryphon, the Silver Fellowship, are, first and foremost, to have fun, hopefully leveling as quickly as possible while doing so. The Silver Fellowship is not, nor ever shall be, a following of PK'ers. It is my desire that you shall grow, nurtured and guided, to the paths of your own perfection.
Be strong in your ability, smart in your skills, careful in your planning, and quick in your achievement.
Player Killing is not acceptable, for we strive to pit ourselves against ourselves in our search for the axis, not against our brothers. If you are attacked, you may defend yourself, but it is preferable, cleaner and more holy in my eyes that you run. There is no dishonor in fleeing from a fight not of your own choosing - far from it. When you flee from combat you deny your attacker their fondest wish: to have a fight. Success and prosperity is a much purer tasting revenge than the chance you may stand over your attacker's corpse. Also do not lose your temper or speak to others in anger, especially those who would spit on the name of Nash. These poor brethren have simply not found his glory yet, and in kindness and mercy we may do more to help them see than any sword blow.
We are good, not just anti-evil. What that means in practical terms that we seek to spread happiness and compassion, to be a example of natural law. You will help others whenever possible (unless you believe those others will gain an advantage in Player Killing because of your assistance). You will heal people who are plagued, regardless of alignment - to not do so is to allow the menace to spread unchecked, which endangers EVERYONE. Live your life with honor, respect, and compassion, and you will find those same qualities returned to you.
Help your brothers and sisters. As there is strength in unity, so must my followers look after each other. If you find a nice item that you can't use, give it to one of our members who can before you try to auction it. This strengthens our own group, instead of another's. Likewise, should you learn of good areas, or have important knowledge of any kind, share this with your brethren. Everyone will prosper for it.
Even though there may be differences in philosophy between us and the followers of Molo, Simon, Ozmo, and Primal, it is important to remember that we all seek to bring manifest the glory of Lord Nash, in all of his aspects. Show respect for the members of these orders, for they, like you, are searching for enlightenment through Nash. If their methods vary greatly, it is wise to remember that in all things there are cycles of growth and destruction, life and death. Each is essential for the other's survival. Watch your brethren and learn from them, for they have important lessons to teach you of survival, endurance, and skill. The eight holes spaced throughout my temple touch in a minor way upon these other facets of Nash, that you might learn more about them, and through them, how we are NOT like them, nor would ever wish to be.
Show respect for all gods, even those with which you may have serious philosophical differences. They have earned their positions, and are worthy of dignity. By the same token, in fact even more so, always be polite and respectful to any Implementor or God+ who speaks with you. If you are behaving as a true follower of Gryphon, you shouldn't have any problems, but if you do, behave with dignity and worthiness. Your attitude will be returned in kind.
Think about the consequences of your actions, for these are important. Do not do something you think is funny or cute if evil may result from it. You are not destroyers; for you to create evil is against your natures, against your vision, and against my way. Always think of who may be hurt by your actions, and avoid such rash behavior.
Beginners are the lifeblood of The Final Challenge Mud, and because of this you will help newbies whenever you can. Never take any action which could hurt a newbie. Show patience and understanding; remember that you were once in this position yourself. Give advice, rather than equipment, and be helpful. Yes, Ambassadors help too, but there are many things that immortals are restricted from telling to mortal folk, and your advice may well be even more useful to a beginner.
As you place your hand inside the hole you feel something grab you, trapping you. A sense of overwhelming power takes you, and you hear the screams of shadows. A voice speaks inside your mind, stunning you:
*** Know and beware. Lord Sirak is power and dominance ***
*** Nash give us the strength to endure persecution ***
You place your hand inside the hole, palm down, and feel the touch stone become soft and sticky, like it has become a living thing. Your hand is trapped, and you can feel your fingertips begin to erupt in painful, pustulent sores, threatening to spread through your body. You hear a voice, whispering and thin, but chilling:
*** Know and beware. Lord Molo is death and decay ***
*** Nash give us the faith to preserve what is good***
You push your hand inside the hole, and feel a shuddering darkness, nameless, palpable, withering, stealing in your hand and your soul.
A voice, nameless, speaks to you:
*** Know and beware. Lord Simon is darkness and corruption ***
*** Nash give us the knowledge of illumination ***
Gingerly, carefully, you walk your fingers gently into the hole in the rock, trying to avoid all hazards. CLICK You try to remove your hand, but it is too late: the stone trap collapses around your wrist as you feel a sharp pain of a bite through your fingers, and chuckling serpentine laughter.
A voice, calm and soothing, speaks to you:
*** Know and beware. Lord Ozmo is guile and trickery ***
*** Nash give us the wisdom to see the truth ***
As you push your hand inside the hole, you feel almost as if your skin is being dissected, analyzed, torn apart for any sign of weakness. As you feel like you will surely pass out from the pain, a voice speaks to you:
*** Know and beware. Lord Primal is hunger and avarice ***
*** Nash give us the patience to resist greed ***
A perfectly preserved long-stemmed red rose is here. A note attached to it reads:
For all of your assistance, I thank thee.
Blessed be, my love.
A fine feather quill is here. Next to it is a small plaque which reads,
Please know that your help
will always be remembered.
Be well, dear lady.
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