I hope someone from Toril (Reprisal, Forrester, Phasmus, Aloisius) speaks up soon ...
The image of that land appears. There are the mountain ranges, snow capped and mighty. There are the fields, castles tall amongst them, manor homes and peasant homes sprinkled throughout. There are the forests, green and verdent, from the tall boreal forests of Luruar to the lush tropical rainforests of Chult.
There are the cities: mighty Waterdeep, noble Silverymoon, proud Zhentil Keep, menacing Mulmaster, Calimport in all it’s sprawl, Candlekeep with it’s endless libraries, and many more. Like the Flanaess, there are the scars of wars and magic ... the High Moor is bleak and barren, the desert of Anarouch shimmers in the heat. Like the Flanaess, there are places of mystery and wonder. The Halls of Eveningstar, the Star Mounds, Ironfang Keep, the mysterious magehalls of Nimbral, the buried wonders of Raurin.
Like the Flanaess, there are places of great beauty: Evermeet, a green and shining island of wonder in the middle of the blue sea, the stately grace of the islands of the Moonshaes, rising in green covered cliffs out of the froth, the grandeur of the Great Rift, the glittering caverns of Mithril Hall.
The elves of this land are like the elves of Oerth, pretty much; some are blue and some are gold, and some are even green, but they are all elves. The dwarves are like those of Oerth, noble and strong and stout. The gnomes are the same, short and clever and darkly humorous. The halflings are similar; some are peaceful gardeners, and some are lonely foresters, but all are reasonably non-violent. Except for the altered geography, and the fact that there are more mages in this land, and they are slightly stronger than the mages of Oerth, this might well be the Flanaess.
(The people of this land, choose to walk a path that diverged from wisdom and the Light.)
Images appear, in order, one by one.
A stately old inn is seen, probably over a hundred years old. It is made of wood, it is aesthetically beautiful, the price is fair, the service excellent, and the food superb.
But now a large number of people are converging on the inn, and with picks and axes they are chopping it down, reducing it to kindling, and hauling off the remains.
And with the inn goes all the trees and shrugs around it, all hewed down and carted away.
An ugly building, 3 stories high, made out of dinghy stone, is put up in it’s place.
The new owner, a gnome, looks it up and down, smiles and nods: ‘This is progress. We will make much more money now.’
A pleasant country village is seen, with a scattering of homes, churches to various dieities, the general store, the blacksmith, the cobbler, the bakery, everything.
But they are tearing it all down, and people are being evicted from their homes by force.
Again, all the buildings are demolished, and all the trees and shrugs hewed away, and everything carted off.
In the place of the town rises a set of what look like tall stone block buildings (apartment tenements), and a new industrial center rises at the center of town, ugly and black, filled with odd and nonsensical looking pipes, beams, wheels, and long tall stacks.
The people are made to live in these stone buildings. They do not look happy.
Now, smoke begins to rise out of the tall stacks at an incredible rate. It very quickly changes the color of the sky to a murky blue, and the fumes cause people to gag, to cough, to hold their hands over their mouths as they hurry to and fro.
(They chose to walk a crooked path, a path that went wrong, terribly wrong.)
The same town, but now it is a city.
There is not a tree or bush in sight.
There are endless rows of tenements, hundreds of them, filling the entire vision, no countryside to be seen at all.
Gigantic buildings tower over the tenements, but these are not churches; they are great buildings of iron and stone, and an awful sound comes from them.
The sound of bellows, of steam, of hammers, of chains, of some unholy uproar, as if all the demons were loose and on the warpath.
The people in the narrow, grimy streets are rushing to and fro like a hoard of demons were coming for them; pushing through each other in an incredible jam, beggars and the destitute and the homeless evident at every corner, being splashed by the filthy slime thrown from the streets as the passerbys step in the murky water.
From the great tall cyclindrical towers are coming multiple plumes of smoke - so much smoke it seems like a forest fire is in progress. No amount of wood could produce that much smoke unless whole forests ARE being cleared to produce it.
The sky is a sickly yellow brown color, and the sunlight coming through the smoke is weak and reddish.
(The people of Faerun went wrong. As they continued walking their new path, reason and care were discarded on the grass.)
A large gathering of gnomes, bald men and women in red robes, men and women wearing black garments adorned with the symbols of a skull or other ghastly markings, and many others are congregated around a table.
A conversation is in progress:
‘We have perfected Permanency, and now it can be cast without any penalty to the wielder’
‘Yes, but will it take on items?’
‘Indeed, for we have modified it so that it will cover most spells, and most items.’
‘We can create magical items on an assembly line.’
‘Show us some of these items.’
‘Here is an arquebus (the device) that fires three times as fast as a normal arquebus, it never misfires, and it is twice as accurate.’
‘Here is a cannon (the device is shown) that loads itself, and we are working on making Bolts of Holding for the ammunition.’
‘Here is a device that will propel a ship through water without sails, employing steam, and its steel blades won’t break from any normal cause’
But now one of the gnomes steps forward, and presents a flask of greek fire.
‘When this is thrown, it will burst with 10 fold effect, and nothing will put out the fire until the oil itself has burned out!’
- - -
(Walking their path, they abandoned the care and caution of magecraft. They abandoned the responsibility of power. They chose to turn a blind eye to consequences. Only power mattered, and that was pursued ruthlessly.)
The forests are being hacked down, trees falling, crashing, thundering to the ground.
The new and horrible sound, the sound of chainsaws, is heard, and the forest is being destroyed at an appalling rate, an incredible rate.
Two iron or steel rails have been laid through the cleared area, and a gigantic machine is sitting on the rails, or a series of gigantic machines. The logs are being laid upon them, piled high, until thousands of trees are laid on the train, for train it is, and the engine roars to life, and with black puffs slowly accelerates, pulling the massive assemblage of logs and steel vehicles away, with a noise like steadily rising thunder.
Some of the trees that were cut are not hewed apart, but instead stripped in mills - strange mills filled with the deafening scream of magical saws, and then placed straight up.
Long rows of these naked posts are set up, then wires - made of some unknown substance - are hung from them, again and again, and more and more posts go up, and more wires, until they seem to block out the sky.
A bird lands on one of the wires, then contacts a second wire. With a flash like lightning, the bird is incinerated. Grumbling gnomes are seen climbing up and working on the wires with devices that are unrecognizable.
They kick the corpse of the bird into the nearby river, which is murky and has a strange sickly smell to it.
The view pulls back, and it can be seen that the devastation to the forests is far and wide, and everywhere these steel beams have been placed over the ground, and the poles and wires are everywhere.
All the quaintly old towns and villages are vanishing, and vast cities are springing up.
Cities where the air is so toxic men and women and children die from breathing it, people are made to live stacked up 10 stories high, 5 to a room, where beggars and the destitute rot in the narrow streets, and where endless vast factories, forbiddening, black, pour endless amounts of smoke into the atmosphere, filling the whole sky with a black pall.
The rivers are poisoned, and those who fall in come out sick, and they die, or must be magically healed ... but magical healing is still as rare as ever, and the clergy are raking in the money more than the new bankers or stock brokers are, shouting and yelling and brandishing slips of paper in a meaningless (and endless) cacophony of sound.
(Some among them had never chosen to walk the crooked path, and had retained wisdom and reason. They gave battle to the gnomes and technomancers, fought to keep them from making Faerun over as they pleased.)
- - -
The druids are gathered in conclave in the sacred grove.
Next, they are seen in the blackish pits of the machines, the factories, throwing their magic, wrecking the machines, stopping the smoke from billowing out into the sky, stopping the poisons from flowing into the rivers.
The sacred grove appears again. Into said grove march figures sheathed in armor, head to toe. The armor is strange; the figures look like they are covered in giant shells. Each figure is carrying a long tube that spits fire: fire that melts rock, and devours trees and shrubs, burning them quickly to cinders.
The grove burns, wails of protest by the dryads as they die unavailing them, for those who are attacking are without pity or remorse.
The image of a court appears. The gnomes are the judges, and the jury.
And the executioners, and the druids, men and women, are taken out and hung, by the hundreds, their bodies left to rot in the poisoned sunlight.
Wizards with red robes shoot blazing beams of light, whether magic or technology is unknown, and those beams cut down trees in a flash, like they’d been struck by lightning.
Mile after mile of forest is destroyed, then fireballs and thousands of the new greek oil explosives are thrown in, incinerating all.
The screams of the dying druids are matched by the screams of dying animals, birds, and the Faerie, trapped and unable to flee the firestorm.
The scene of a dungeon. Druid women hang in rows. With great glee, the men and women who are their jailors, wearing the hideous skull symbol seen earlier, begin their work of torture, ultimately multilating the victims beyond recognition.
(Drunk with power, victorious over the peoples and forces of reason, they chose to willfully abuse the very magic that had made them strong, and to hand the secrets of its power over to those who should never have been allowed to even know of such things.)
- - -
A man and a gnome are sitting, facing the hideous visage of a great orc, and a small grinning kobold.
The man speaks:
‘This is the new gatling gun, with Permanency and Haste, and with bullets augmented with explosive magic.’
‘Here is the secret of mass producing the new rifle. With this weapon, you can kill your opponents at thousands of yards, and their arrows cannot touch you.’
‘Here is how you build a factory to mass produce weapons of war ...’
He hands the weapons to the orc and kobold, and shows them extensive schematics.
‘Here is how to make Permanency effective over and over, without cost to yourself.’
‘Here are the secrets of magic, which have been wrongfully withheld from you.’
‘Here is how to cast high powered spells.’
‘Here is how to combine magic with science.’
A new image appears. It is like a Nibelungen cavern, for it is full of the den and uproar those dwarves would make.
But it is kobolds who are making this den, as they work in the hellish uproar of a great underground war factory. Magical blades, magical bullets, magic firearms, magical armor, and a number of unrecognizable oddities are all being made, while kobolds gloat over them, grin over them, and peer over schematics.
The scene shifts, and now an orcish city is seen. It is worse than the human cities ... they didn’t even bother to build tenements for their workers, and most live in huts.
But their factories tower into the sky, unleashing ungodly torrents of smoke, and from those factories come great vehicles mounted on the twin rails, and huge versions of the arquebus, over 10 feet long, are sitting on them. The orcs jump and howl with glee as their first magical artillery rolls out the door.
(Those that should have stopped them, failed in their duties. And when the illithid, aroused by the turmoil Above, choose to make themselves masters of the Underdark, nobody even bothered to look for the danger until it was upon them, and they were slaughtered.)
- - -
The Chosen of Mystra sits in her dressing room, peering at herself in the mirror. She looks gaunt and sad, and is holding a sheath of papers.
On those papers, is a long list, the list of druids and elves slain by the gnomes and humans of the Technomancy, as it now calls itself, and by the new and greatly feared Humanoid Alliance.
She shakes her head, and says: ‘We must not interfere. We must allow the world to make it’s own choices, for good or evil. We shall not stop this thing.’
The scene flashes to a drow city 2 miles below her.
The drow are being slaughtered, the mind flayers (illithid) are blasting them, incinerating them, blowing their brains out, devouring those they can catch.
Soon all the drow city is in ruins, and the last survivors are rounded up by the illithid, and march off as mindless automatons under illithid mental domination.
The great House of Baenre falls, and Narbondel breaks in half and falls, shattering, shards flying everywhere. Menzoberranzan is whelmed by the illithid.
Blingdenstone, the home of the Svirfneblin, lays silent and empty, no remaining life in the ruins, every last gnome carried off to the illithid cities.
The priestesses of Ghaunadaur fall to illithid mental power, and their servants, the puddings and oozes, halt, and acknowledge the overlordship of their new masters, the illithid, supreme rulers of the Underdark.
(Their path led to the ruin and multilation of Faerun. In that ruin, even those peoples of reason and lore were pulled down into folly and darkness. Amongst the technomancers who had perpetrated this wreckage, no act of madness was now beyond their scope of thought.)
- - -
The dwarf king roars in anger: ‘The elves started this trouble. I want Queen Amlaruil of Evermeet and all her mages brought here so they can be tried, properly found guilty, then drawn and quartered! Do you hear me?!
The elven emissary gasps, and states: ‘That is not reasonable, m’lord. The elves are victims of this war also.’
The king glares. ‘Bring me the Queen, or face the wrath of the dwarves!’
The elven emissary looks offended, and says ‘I shall depart now, and come back when you will be courteous and have thought upon the matter, and realized that what you ask is impossible and unjust.’
The dwarven king jumps to his feet in anger, points at the emissary, and states ‘I want him taken, chained up, and given 50 lashes. I want it done now.’
The elven emissary looks horrified and shocked. ‘I am a diplomat. Have the dwarves chosen to throw aside all diplomacy??’
The dwarven king roars ‘Make it a hundred lashes, and to the bone. If he starts to die, heal him! Then throw him out the front gate to rot!’
The flogging is carried out, the dwarves grim and strangely eager to the task, and the screams are deafening. What is left of the elf is tossed outside the Gates, which then slam shut.
When the battle is over, they doff their helmets, and the hideous visages of orcs, bugbears, kobolds, gnolls, every kind of humanoid in some unholy harmony, are seen.
The Faerie. But they are leaving. Pearly gates open, the Faerie step through, and the Gates close behind them ... forever.
By the hundreds, by the thousands, the Faerie, many mourning and weeping, are leaving.
The very lifeblood of the world is stricken, the Weave falters, the forests are permanently less verdant and green, the power of life is forever diminished.
The elves of Evermeet ... but now they are in underground caverns, cavorting and dancing and feasting as elves do ... with their new friends the orcs, gnolls, bugbears, kobolds, and all the others.
The daughter of Queen Amlaruil, beautiful and radiant, kneels before the great orc king, and kisses him on the feet. Then he sweeps her up in his arms and kisses her deeply, his body pressed to hers.
With a cheer and a roar, dozens of others do the same.
Bugbears sweep up elven women in their arms, elven women clasp kobolds lovingly, elven and humanoid faces stare at each other lovingly, and there is comradery and merriment ... and many children.
Half elf half orc. Half elf half bugbear. Half elf half kobold. One third elf one third orc one third kobold. One quarter orc one quarter goblin one quarter flind one quarter ogre.
A great dance begins, as elves and humanoids swing their partners around in glee, and the orc king sits with his elven concubine in his arms (she is totally naked, along with three quarters of the crowd), fondling her, while she grins and giggles.
Over all are two statues. One is of Father Grumsh, the Wise Old Sage, venerated by all elves and humanoids, and Mother Sehanine, the Mysterious, who all humanoids and elves venerate for magic and psionics.
Well, actually - only a few venerate these two. Most of the elves and humanoids abandoned their respective religions long ago.
The temples of the Seldarine lay silent and empty. They were not laid to rest with care, but were looted and ransacked, and the sacred shrines defiled.
More importantly, it was the elves who did this.
Elven swords hacked down the statue of Corellon, even arrows are embedded in the great murals, and elven swear words and curses are written on the walls and the shattered altars.
(In the new world the gnomes and technomancers had created, depravity became the norm)
A great cathedral, complete with stained glass windows, looms all about.
The sunlight shines down upon the congregation.
The congregation, is having an orgy.
But this is not just any orgy; this is an orgy of the Church of Toril.
Mind flayers are using their tentacles to pleasure women. Beholders are being stroked along the eyestalks by loving dwarven hands, even as the Beholders kiss each other and those on the floor, licking with their long tongues.
Kender giggle in the background, stealing everything as they move through the crowd, pointing out (as if it needed pointing out) in eloquent detail each new scene they witness.
Several ogres are present, wearing girdles of giant strength. They are quite popular.
Even more popular are the half reptilian Yuan-Tin, with their long snake-like tongues that give a new definition to the words french kissing.
An aboleth is present, and is serving as a carpet for two lovers, who are busy with each other even as the aboleth fondles them with it’s many tentacles.
It would appear several undead are present - their cold embrace is a novelty to the living, and spectral figures merge with the warm, living ones.
Even a few skeletons are present, drawing their long bony hands up and down the backs of those present, sending delicious tingles up and down the spines of men and women.
Meanwhile, the high priests and priestesses are having a private romp of their own.
A human woman wraps herself in magically altered Grey Ooze, and as it pours into her mouth and other places she convulses with pleasure (breathing apparently is optional), and it would seem the Ooze itself is radiating a sense of delight of it’s own.
The halfling woman prefers the Black Pudding. Its thousands of tiny microscopic mouths are giving her thousands of tiny nibbles, from head to toe, like a thousand kisses on her flesh, and she croons with the joy of it.
The elven woman yonder prefers the classic, high style version: the Ochre Jelly. As it pours into her every orifice, she cries out in delight, trying to wrap her arms around it as it encases her in it’s gooey substance.
Men, women, slimes, jellies, and oozes all meld with each other, merge with each other in joyous passion.
Of course, the succubi and even a few erinye are present, with all that entails, and they are a definite hit with the men ... and the women.
Cries of passion and cries of pain compete with each other for dominance in the air, which is thick with reddish incense; powerful aphrodasiacs working upon the lungs and minds of all in the room.
The gnome is standing at a pupit, giving a speech, in which he is explaining the basics of ... well, it is gibberish really (quantum physics).
An audience of learned sages, illithid, a number of phaerimm with beholder servants, humanoids, githyanki, and other assorted beings are present, listening.
When the diminuitive gnome is finished, they all stand and applaud him, even the phaerimm.
Now, you are inside the gnome’s head, hearing his thoughts, as he watches them applaud, and he is thinking ‘We have shown that we are superior to all of them, we gnomes, and they appreciate this now. About time.’
You are now inside the head of one of the phaerimm, whose magic and genius is legendary. And it is thinking ‘It is a privilege to learn at the feet of he who holds the Seat of Academia. If only I could actually get to meet the distinguished professor, that would be very nice.’
(WAKE UP AND PAY ATTENTION. IS THIS WHAT YOU WANT FOR OERTH? IS IT? IS IT??!!
FOR EVEN NOW, THEY SECRETLY TRAIN THE GNOMES AND DWARVES OF THE LORTMILS IN THEIR WAYS, AND THOSE PEOPLE EAGERLY FOLLOW THEM.