Empire Of Souls Book 1 Chapter 47
Volume 1 Chapter 47 Moksha
A lone figure sat in a meditative pose with legs crossed on a strangely shaped golden throne.The figure appeared to be a lean, lightly robed man with a crown that bore an image of the tree of life fit snug against his brow, and rising slightly above his head.The palm of one of his hands rested in the other atop his legs, and his eyes were tightly closed.
The base of the throne looked much like the upper body of an elephant with two elephant heads, one on the left and right. A leafy pagoda rose upwards out of the back of the two headed elephant as if it were reaching for the sky. An occasional breeze stirred the golden leaves making it seem as if the entire structure were a moment in time rather than an inanimate throne.
There was no sound in this place and it was devoid of color and presence. It was as if it were a place of both arousing life and listless death. The man who sat in silent meditation was releasing a powerful pressure and was clearly the center of this place and gave off an impression of absolute prominence within the empty expanse.
A deep and over exaggerated sigh shattered the empty silence.
"That cursed one found it. This has allowed him to break free from the cycle of reincarnation. His soul is no longer a cog in its wheel, but he still has a long path ahead of him. Oh, how I grow weary of this endless and bitter loneliness. When our world came to be, right in the beginning, the Origin had consciousness. By creating its first life, it established the order and structure of this world. I was one such life, chosen to be a custodian of this infinite wheel and here I have remained for all that time. What was once bliss, an escape from cruel reality, has now become my torment."
The man seated in a meditative pose spoke with his eyes remaining closed. His words were filled with deep lamentation as if he were grieving the end of all things.
A crushing sound reverberated through the empty space sounding much like the sound a drop of water makes when falling into the sea, only magnified infinitely. It didn't seem to bother the man who was the only visible life within the void.
His voice was not much more than a whisper but its power echoed growing louder until the border of this domain shattered like glass, opening into a dark space. There an immensely handsome and golden heroic figure floated proudly with gleaming divine armor, and a laurel crown. Twelve golden immense wings protruded from his back giving him an aura of majesty and power that was not any less than the man seated in a meditative position on his throne.
Tihr flew swiftly into the void like domain until he was floating right before Moksha who had yet to open his eyes.
"Do you ever move? Or is it necessary for you to remain still?"
"I am the cycle of life, death, and rebirth. I am ever moving and ever still. Why have you come?"
Tihr glanced briefly around the space, it was empty as he knew it would be but he looked nonetheless.
"You know exactly why I've come, why play these games?"
"If you had done your work properly, things would never have come to this!" Tihr spoke barely containing his anger.
"I already told you, there was no way to know what would happen putting him into the cycle of reincarnation. A soul that possessed part of the Origin of a world would not be so simple, but you insisted. Now, once again, you have come to point fingers? I completed my part of the bargain, it is you that have failed."
"Hmph! Even if that is the case, it is highly unlikely that he would be able to escape from the cycle as he did! If you had been observing as you should, how could this possibly happen? He has fully removed himself from our clutches and now none of us will be able to sense him with our divine power without descending!"
Tihr could no longer hide his anger and he abruptly turned around staring off somewhere into the distance.
"You know what is at stake here Moksha. I truly hope you had nothing to do with him escaping the cycle of reincarnation."
A boundless pressure surrounded the two as Moksha's eyes finally opened. His eyes had a rippling pattern and any that looked within might lose their soul. These were the eyes of Samsara and were considered to be one of the most powerful divine artifacts within the god nexus. Tihr could feel the power of those eyes on his back but he remained unafraid with his back to Moksha.
"You forget yourself Tihr and this body before me is a mere avatar. Even if your main body was here, this is my domain. Here, I am the sole ruler, or have you forgotten?"
"You know very well exactly why I had to come here with my avatar and not my main body. If not for your carelessness, we would have gained the Origin from that bastard and I would have already advanced to an Elder god, increasing my power. We all could have advanced, and we wouldn't be in the precarious situation we have found ourselves in. We were so close to achieving our objectives. He would definitely have given up either in this life or the next, but miraculously he somehow survived the curse. Not only that, but he has even escaped the cycle of reincarnation."
Tihr finally turned and looked straight into Moksha's eyes. He felt some discomfort but other than that, there appeared to be no negative effects. He raised his divine longsword which he had been holding at his side and pointed it towards the seated god of reincarnation.
"And you say you have nothing to do with it? That it is mere coincidence? This may only be my avatar, but it still possesses 70% of my power. I have also come here in good faith, and I demand an answer!"
Moksha's pupils began to swirl emitting a strange darkness that swept outwards. Even though Tihr stood with his sword pointed at Moksha threateningly, he began to suffer under the pressure emitted by Moksha's Samsara eyes.
Moksha's word rippled through the void like a hurricane of sound, thundering against Tihr's avatar. The avatar struggled to resist the power of the Samsara eyes but eventually was blown away towards the fringes of the void and eventually to the outside.
Only a few words continued to echo through the vast empty space, "This is far from over."
The Samsara eyes closed and silence reigned once more in the space for a time before Moksha muttered to himself, "Did you think I would care for the scraps you offered me? No, what I seek is much more. My fusion of laws is that of the soul, much like the path of this young one. Perhaps in time when he matures, only then will I be able to reap the harvest of my efforts and finally be free of this place."
Tihr's avatar had long been blown outside of Moksha's domain and couldn't hear the last words that Moksha muttered. Nonetheless, he didn't fully trust the the words of Moksha anyway. There was no proof of his accusations and he was only making certain assumptions, but he couldn't help but feel there was something more going on here.
Originally, Tihr had not wanted to involve any other gods in his plan to obtain the Origin of that world but things had not gone as planned. In the end, he couldn't avoid others becoming involved and had to share the larger portion of the spoils but he was able to keep some things secret. The existence of Aleksandros and a significant portion of the Origin's power, only a very few knew about it. One of those was Moksha, who was necessary because of his position as overseer of the cycle of reincarnation. The other was the Devil Sovereign Bhaal, from where the curse originated from which could carry through lifetimes.
"Tch… That being can't be trusted but there is nothing that can be done currently. Moksha is one of the original gods of our world and a unique one at that. He has no church, no followers, nothing to hold him down. The only responsibility he has is overseeing the cycle of reincarnation and he gains his power from leeching a very tiny amount of potential from every soul that passes through it. This amount, though small, can't be ignored because of the vast quantity of souls. In essence, he isn't necessarily powerful but at the same time he isn't weak. I thought the Origin of that world would be sufficient to entice him but I am beginning to think his ambitions lie elsewhere."
After floating in the space outside Moksha's domain and pondering for a moment, Tihr's avatar finally disappeared from that space. After some time, he reappeared somewhere else distant.
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