A History of Thaea: The Osyraen Period

750 B.E. – 500 B.E.

I’ll admit I’ve decided a few new things in writing this up, and reserve the right to correct any problems I find later. It is all written intentionally vaguely, but this is in part because there is a lot of lost, or confusing history and disagreement intended. Meant to echo subtle things such as the unlikely ages of some biblical figures, or the doubtful authenticity of any aspect of arthurian legend, but all are more likely true(r) in this context.

I intend this to be something of a living document as I track down little things I have (somewhere,) but also part of a series tackling different epochs of world history.

This is none the less, largely codifying my operating understanding of the history of the world, with a few flourishes along the way.

Though exact dates for anything much before 200 B.E. are hotly debated by scholarly circles, most are willing to oblige approximate decades of various significant historical events as far back as the commonly given 750 B.E. for the founding of Osyrae, and the declaration of Osir as King (Koning.)

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A Rhan’s Eye View

So, I’ve been working on a map I would be happy to show for a while. Some might have noticed a featured image on the previous commentary which was taken from the larger map. I’ve a lot more to write up on it, but I thought I’d share this more inclusive view. I’m not sure I have the equatorial scale of the continent facing us right, as it’s been roughed onto the circle to simulate a sphere manually. It should still be fairly close… maybe 20% variance.

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A Game by Many Names

This weeks chapter gets a pre-commentary about the title. Which while entirely prosaic and uninteresting in origin, did inspire me down a familiar (if somewhat different) rabbit hole.† I also admit I may have read this name somewhere as a one off joke I interpreted to mean roughly where I’ve gone (possibly a webcomic.) Though I cannot identify a source. There is a further key bit of inspiration in the following gaming joke: d4s are basically caltrops.

† Now mind you, unless I thought of a proper origin for it, rabbit hole is an expression that should never appear in context of the world of Thaea (origin Alice in Wonderland.) Oh well, this is commentary. Also in the very unlikely event anyone didn’t get where this is going Degresses, Digresses, Snakes, & the Occasional Climbing Implement, may be involved. Strangely this is not a caving expedition, any allusions to the burrows of adorable fluffy mammals aside.


Pilgrims & Paths generally speaking is a children’s game. Though this is the most common name by a small margin Travelers (rarely Wanderers,) and Jacks (Caltrops, or more rarely Stars) may fill in the blanks depending on who you ask. Some (very rarely) refer to the game simply as Ascension, but that can cause confusion with other games. In all irony this final name is most common when it is played illicitly by youth in a cloister, or Palentian soldiers in a barracks, as a form of gambling.

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Broken Hill: The Keep and Upper Court

I’ve long had a pretty strong understanding of the layout and structure of broken hill, and have decided I need to start sharing more of these works in progress. I’ll probably get the regular commentary up later in the week.

I started back in 2015-2016 building out a version of this that is a little farther along, but had issues that made it hard to finish (and solve) than start over using the tools in Sketch Up a bit better.

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The Shadow’s Last Call

I’ve pretty much had the opening verse of this song stuck in my head ever since I wrote it a few weeks ago, and so decided to play around with finishing it, and explore the surrounding mythology/history. I initially went to post it last week but realized that could strike the wrong tone with things going on, until I’d resolved the consequences a bit better.

What darkness rings itself in light,
calls the flames to dance,
oh her realm is one of such desires,
that scald the flesh, like burning fires,

oh what darkness rings itself in light,
calls flames to a final dance,
oh but would you tarry there my dear,
oh would you take, such a frightful chance,

what darkness rings itself in light,
calls the flames to a final chance,
oh if all is surely lost my dear,
oh why not take the chance,

for what darkness rings itself in light,
what noble deed decrees what’s right,
oh who do you trust in the coming night,
when cruelty abounds, in the name of light,

oh what darkness rings itself in light,
what illusions bare the harshest truth,
oh can you trust what you were told,
come on my dear, the night grows old,

oh what darkness rings itself in light,
oh would you take the chance of delight,
or will you terry there my dear,
let the chance be denied by fear,

oh what shadows cast by receding light,
oh would you trust, it will be alright.

The Shadow’s Last Call, 252 E.R.

The Myth:

“What darkness rings itself in light,” is an old Clarion saying about the abyss, which the myths said hung above as a gaping maw ringed in a final fire. Eye or Mouth of the Abyss are synonymous, and though some of the older mythology personified the void or abyss as conniving or intelligent, such occurrences are inconsistent and rare. Most as the modern Clarion philosophy consider the Abyss a simple force of nature, though hunger is ascribed to it, no thought traditionally afforded. Ravenous, gluttonous, and lastly of the flesh in Clarion thought – animal.

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Commentary III:35

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A Road Narrow and Winding

Much is said of the straight and narrow, but far less of the challenge of the narrow and winding. It wasn’t an intentional metaphor but I find unintended ones that fit well often fall out of my writing. From the twisting of “The Path” to variations on euphemism of “purpose.” Our heroes are trying to find a moral path through an immoral world. Their lives an unending maze of twisting paths all alike. Their only real control their own choices, even if the decision is to take choice from another, still rests in their hands.

We open on Wren on his back in the snow. Etore has lived up to her promises, but most specifically to teach him to stay down, or to never stay down. This is more or less how she was taught, first by an abusive father figure, then by a mentor. Her path has not been kind, and even she wonders how much she is taking out on Wren, and how much she is teaching him a lesson he needs to understand.

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Commentary III:34

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The Eye is not Always Calm

I’ll admit there are a few things I’m not fully happy with in this chapter, but the day to day crisis to crisis needed to end. We’ve reached a stalemate, or even a checkmate but it takes time for things to come to fruition. So time moves on…mostly.

Adria’s a real card. *cough* Sorry. She continues to be cryptic about what she knows, though she does admit not so much as she pretends. The cards remain an all but impossible thing not to bring up around her, but she is learning to be more reserved in the company she is keeping. I do rather like her closing line from the opening segment.

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