May 26, 2024

Cthalha

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Cthalha is the Elder God of the Elder World.

Cthalha is an enormous aquatic creature with a humanoid torso and a long, mermaid tail. She has elongated arms with sharp claws, and a series of crab-like appendages connected at her back. Her head looks like that of an octopus, with tentacles that hang around her face, and six eyes that see in all spectrums of color and across realities. She has knowledge that stretches almost to the dawn of time, due both to her age and all the secrets the oceans hold. This is one of the greatest sources of her power, as she has access to knowledge from ancient times.  She currently possesses the Rune of Elder Magic.
The Elder World
Cthalha reigns over the seas and all that lies within on both Earth and beyond. Ancient lost creatures, sunken temples, and lost treasures are under her control. Although she values bravery and the spirit of exploration, she is as cold and merciless as the seas she commands. Many ancient aquatic races swear fealty to Cthalha, and she draws upon them for her needs. These creatures have inspired many myths ranging from leviathans to mermaids to fish people. Besides the creatures of the sea, many seafaring folk pledge themselves to her for protection from sea. 
 
Under the guidance and control Cthalha are her three Sirens, who live in the seas of Earth and are known for luring lost sailors to follow them into storms and dragging their bodies to the deep. Tales of their cruelty and seduction have come to be known even more so than those of Cthalha who in comparison is rarely seen.

Lore Scrolls #

“Fragment from the tattered pages of the Bathybic Librum: …of this world, which was in the eldest days all a sea. The deep waters embraced the earth and brushed the heavens, untainted by the grotesque, the rigid, the unyielding protrusions of the land. All was liquid, shifting, dark, and deep. Until it fell from between the stars. It wounded the waters, its waves racing thrice across the globe. And it shattered the earth beneath, delivering upward vast swathes of ocean floor. And these became the first islands, and continents, to mar the pristine body of the sea.”

“Then did the unearthly effluence of that fallen mass infuse the waters for leagues around. And the grotesque things that swim and crawl in the depths grew more loathsome still. They turned upon one another, and other sea life, driven by a new malevolent mien and a burgeoning intelligence. And they fought, and slew, not for territory or for food, but to prove their devotion to the things that lurked still in the flooded crater, the things from the stars, which the newly reborn abominations sensed but never had seen, and which they came swiftly to worship.”

“…came the rise of beasts that walked on two legs instead of four, and thought themselves greater than other beasts. And the youngest of these was man. And humankind, so vulnerable, dwelt in terror of the deep. All save a few. Some few men and women found a fascination in the rolling of the tide and the blinding darkness beneath the aqueous skin of the sea. These were called by their cowardly brethren mad, but had been touched by the dreams and portents sent by the terrible slumbering consciousness of the one who waits below.”

“And some were drowned in abyssal depths, and some taken by the ichthyic abominations who dwelt below and were nevermore seen, and some returned inland, their thoughts twisting like eels and their dreams overflowing, but always without answers. Until one came, her name nevermore to be spoken, who would become the greatest of the Deep Sirens. Never did she brave the abyss, but sat herself in the sediment at its edge. The abominations recognized that she had been called, and left her be. And for years, she studied and she waited and she dreamt at the edge of the sea.”

“In study of the tides and the shifting of the sea-driven sands, did she read the secrets of the world and the waters, the creatures birthed below and the alien intelligences from above. In listening to the gurgle and the hiss of the Deep Sirens and their host did she come to understand the barest inkling of their utterances and the cold hatreds that drove them. And only when the patterns had rewritten her thoughts, until her own words had metamorphosed into those burbling sonances, did grim Cthalha, dweller in the crater, send to the Siren her own dreams.”

None since have understood the incomprehensible mind of the Queen of Ciphers as did the first Deep Siren, but many are they, driven by curiosity or madness or an impossible awareness, who try. They are always three, trines of Deep Sirens stretching back to the beginning. Seekers of secrets, linked by esoteric writings and forbidden knowledge, their thoughts and dreams changed by such enigmas until they share with their brethren notions and understandings unspoken. And all serve Cthalha, and venerate her, that she might grant them the deepest comprehension of all things before the inexorable end.

But the Queen of Ciphers cares little for such a transient thing as man. For Cthalha is of the sea, be it one of green waters or of the colorless void, and as they, she is endless. She waits, and cares not for the passing of time. What rose shall fall; the sea was first, and the sea will be last. One day, the tides and the stars shall move as one. Then Cthalha will rise, and the sea will rise, and all that was land, and voice, and life, and thought, shall once more be hers alone.

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