Sacred Times

Flions are from Jewel at the lovely Sanori Gardens!

You and your guide proceed along the shore for a time, watching the waves and the sea things that play among them. The sand beneath your feet begins to change in composition, becoming finer and showing less evidence of past sea life. It seems that you have roamed farther from the waters as you traveled, and now a less amiable wind batters at you as the view of the sea recedes. The air has become dry, and the DragonSpeaker begins to steer you yet further inland, navigating by some means you can only imagine. Sparse vegetation sometimes appears in feeble patches of dusty green, comprised of occasional squat shrubs and thorny bits of some unnamed desert flower. There are small, thick and waxy yellow blooms that look rather uninviting despite their faintly sweet smell.

After a time, a shape begins to form on the horizon; it is a sort of low dome with a shimmering aura of desert heat that sometimes flashes bronze in the harsh light. This building is no mirage, though the thought was in the back of your mind when you first saw it. The building remains on the horizon for a time, the sides slowly becoming more visible, showing themselves to be comprised of a brown substance slightly darker than the sand found in its shadow. They seem to be completely unmarked, undecorated, and there is no evidence of individual stones. It soon becomes apparent that the entire building is round, capped by the metallic dome, also uniformly featured. An unusual, yet simple design slightly reminiscent of a barrow or some earthen cathedralÖ you cannot quite decide if it is beautiful or foreboding.

As you and your friend draw up to it, you can see that there is a single opening. It is plain, yet seemingly as strong as the stone surrounding it. No marking adorns the stark surface, no means of telling what lies within. The DragonSpeaker knocks once, a single solemn proclamation of your presence. She does not speak, but seems to be at ease, even here. A rustling, shuffling sound answers after a moment, and the door swings slowly inward, revealing nothing more than a yawning black maw.

The two of you enter the darkness to meet the keeper of this strange, remote domain.

It takes a few minutes for your eyes to adjust completely to the sudden change in light. A large creature waits patiently for you to get used to the flickering torchlight that has replaced the biting sun. It turns out to be a Flion, sitting on his haunches with an expression of utter calm. ďGood afternoon, I am AvraŽl. I am the keeper of this Sanctum, and I ask that you keep your voices low while you are here. Come with me and I will give you refreshment.Ē He smiles at you both, gives the DragonSpeaker a greeting nod, and then turns to start off down spacious hallway, the two of you in tow. The walls inside the place seem to be made of the same plain brown stone-like material that comprised the outside. However, these indoor walls are graced by an intricate storyboard sort of design both carved and painted into the stone. An odd sort of writing appears in places as well, but even without being able to read it, you can tell that the story depicts the creation of the world and various other archetypal tales. Flions and other draconic beings seem to be the prominent characters, though humanoid shapes appear once in a while too. Your musings are interrupted when you suddenly find yourself in a very round, comfortable furnished room. Two human chairs and a low table are the prominent features, and you are pleased to see that the table bears a plate of fruit and glasses of some sort of juice.

ďI prepared a bit of nourishment when I saw you from afar,Ē AvraŽl remarked pleasantly while settling himself near the table. You and the DragonSpeaker follow his example and seat yourselves as well, with the appropriate thanks. As you munch on a particularly tasty bit of mango or something like it, the Flion explains some of the history of this odd place. The DragonSpeaker could have told you, but she did not want to rob AvraŽl of the pleasure of telling the tale.

ďYou are now quite a ways underground in one of the upper chambers of the Temple of the Forgotten Earth,Ē he begins, ďThis place is sacred ground set aside for the worship and protection of the spirits of the earth. In return for the gifts and prayers of those who care for the earth, you will be given good luck and occasional small gifts.Ē He eyed the remaining fruit approvingly, ďThis fruit is one of the gifts I received in thanks for my devotion to the Temple. These things are not given lightly, and they are best when shared among friends.Ē He sampled a bit of an apple. ďYou ought to be able to make it across the desert safely if you take some of this fruit along.Ē He wraps up what is left in a small bit of cloth and hands it to you. ďRemember the earth as you travel and the earth will remember you.Ē As the three of you proceed back along the chamber toward the surface, you cannot help but wonder what the rest of the underground Temple is like, but there is not enough time to explore it today. This thought in mind, you glance at the wall designs you had studied before. Another Flion, some sort of spirit creatureÖ that Flion looks a lot like AvraŽl. There are two people with him as well, and one of them is carrying somethingÖ The picture breaks off into a different story as realization sets in, and then you find yourself looking out into the desert again. AvraŽl follows you just outside of the Temple entrance to see you off. ďYou are welcome to return to this place whenever you wish. Perhaps one day you will make a pilgrimage to the deeper reaches, where the prayers to the earth are sometimes answered in strange and wondrous waysÖĒ The two of you bid farewell and set off in a new direction, each pondering the odd thoughts brought on by the visit to the strange desert cavern.

Name: Moon
Prize for participating in
Talk Like a Pirate Day!
Name: AvraŽl
"av-rye-ell"
Gender: Male
Life Mate: none
Breeding Mate: none
Age: Adult
Wings: Dragon
Tail: Sail
Horns: Two: Brow
Spikes: None
Fur: Mane: Spikey
Markings: Stripes
Coloration: Cream + Sky
Legs: Both
Eyes: Sky
Special: None
Clutch: Special Clutch Three
Personality: Although it is hard to tell from the brief encounter, AvraŽl is actually a very scholarly Flion. He loves to learn and study, and he also enjoys sharing this knowledge with others. His specialty is ancient history, but he dabbles in studies of the occult and spiritual arts as well, more for his own curiosity than anything else. His duties at the Temple of the Forgotten Earth are not well known, though they seem to include praying to the spirits of the earth. Most of the deeper parts of the Sanctum are not well known to any creature save AvraŽl, though he would gladly show anyone who wished to learn of them. It is simply not in his nature to deny knowledge to anyone, as this is one of his most highly prized possessions. Kindhearted, though a little Spartan in his words, AvraŽl is a good soul who wishes to change the world for the better through enlightenment. He is not much of a fighter, though the harsh desert living has made him very strong in body, while his studies and rituals have strengthened his spirit and mind.