Act 1: White Marsh – The Fate of the Foreign Races
[13 years ago – Etibar Aurel-Terran: Age 6]
13 years ago a travelling procession consisting of tens of thousands of people moved from the west trekking all the way to Toro’s North Western border.
Among these people was a 6 year old boy; his name – Etibar Aurel-Terran Liew. But everyone just called him Terran.
What was strange about these people was that none of them were human. In fact, whether it was their origins or their destination, both were places populated by alienoid beings.
These people had extremely pale white skin. In fact, they were whiter than a sheet of paper. They did not even have the pink flush of blood flowing underneath the skin. If you cut them, who even knows what color their blood would be.
Not only did they have an unnatural skin color, but their fingers were also a deep black color. In addition to this, they also had thick dark-black lines on their arms as well as around the eyes and necks.
Another unique feature of these people was a black symbol on the chest and the forehead. These symbols ranged from dots to clovers and hearts. They represented the unique power that a person of this alien race possessed.
In addition to powers which were unique to the individual, this group of people also had a common biological ability. They all had access to Magnetomotive Force at varying degrees.
“The Arun” was the true collective name of these people. However, at some point in history everyone started referring to them as “the Shades”, an alien race from the Shadow Realm.
The population of the Zika world was in the billions. Naturally, the planet was very diverse with thousands upon thousands of ethnicities.
Within a single country, it was possible to have dozens or hundreds of tribes each with their own language and unique attributes including varying heights and body sizes, skin color, hair texture, facial features, and other body type differences.
In general, the human population in the Zika world was very diverse; probably even more so than everywhere else.
However, all these people were still humans born in these lands. In the same way, the spirit beasts, beast men, and other mystical creatures were also full natives of the Zika planet.
So who were the Arun?
In this world there actually existed aliens? Beings from other realms, planets, or even other dimensions!
These people were the residents of the White Marsh.
In the Sword Scar continent, the White Marsh was located to the North West of Toro and it extended into 3 or 4 other nations.
It was also the place where the foreign races congregated from all over the world. The White Marsh was not only their safe haven but also their new home on this human planet.
A home far away from home.
Terran was born in the Lands of Yellow Sands, he grew up on the road, and at age 6 he and his parents finally arrived at the White Marsh where they settled among other Arun.
Although they were practically alien refugees, the Arun people had a shocking origin. They were descendants of one of the 12 Followers of the Eclipse Dragon.
“Why do the humans hate us?”
“Why did we have to leave home?”
As far back as Terran could remember, he had always asked his parents these two questions. For what reasons were they forced to migrate from the continent in the West – the Lands of Yellow Sands?
However, even if he was a child, his parents, especially his father Etibar Nu-Yuga, never sugarcoated the matter.
Nu-Yuga had always explained to his children that they were a foreign and alien race. This was the main reason their people were hated. It was hostility that had lasted hundreds of years.
“Once upon a time, our people, the Shades, were at war with humanity on behalf of our ‘god’.” Etibar Nu-Yuga spoke to his children.
The shocking thing was that when he mentioned ‘god’, there was a hint of mockery in his voice. Along with it, there was also a hint of pain, melancholy, and defeat. However, his young children including Terran naturally could not sense this.
Nu-Yuga continued, “In this war, humans who were captured were taken back to our home world as slaves. Those in conquered territories were given the title ‘subjects’ bound to serve our people until they died. Even after they died, their descendants also could not escape this fate.”
From this explanation, it was evident that the Shades were a conquering alien race.
The Shades worshiped the Eclipse Dragon. This was a powerful dragon god that had awakened the primordial dragon blood.
Because of this, the Eclipse Dragon had the power of a True God – capable of reshaping reality at a whim, slaughtering other dragons that were once its peers, and conquering the Beast Realm.
A tyrannical conqueror!
Without experiencing a single setback in its conquests, it was not long before the Eclipse Dragon had set its sights on the human race. However, its plans to conquer the human world were thwarted by the rise of the Human Emperor, Sanaan. This was a tale of a thousand years ago.
Even though the dragon had been stopped, the skirmishes between humanity and the followers of the dragon had continued for hundreds of years. Who knows, maybe these conflicts were even going on as of the present but on other planets and planes of reality.
Nu-Yuga continued his explanation, “After the dimensional gate to our home world collapsed a hundred or so years ago, those on that side could not come over and those of us on this side were stuck here. Forever!”
“The humans who were highly mistreated, the humans who were once at the bottom of the food chain; suddenly they had the numbers, they had freedom and they had power! Predictably, the few of us left on this side were the target of their hatred.”
“Sigh, it is hard to let go of hate. Decades, even centuries cannot easily erase hate.” With a soft sigh, Terran’s mother added.
Raikar – that was her name. She was a kind woman; but very strong as well.
“Terran, remember always that love is messy and it is hard, very hard. But hate is clean, it is very easy. But that does not mean you should take the easy choice.” This had always been Raikar’s advice to her eldest son.
In this great world, most people were consumed by hate, anger, and enmity. Love and understanding were rare concepts to come by. And even rarer, was forgiveness.
Apart from a few humans, the White Marsh was mostly populated by four alien races: the Shades, the Reds, the Protectors, and the Revenants.
The Red Zonia also known as “the Reds” were a race that came from a foreign domain. On the surface, this domain was populated only by women. These women looked human in form but their skin was red and they had statuesque figures like the traditional Amazons.
In reality, these women were not truly women in the human definition of the term. In nature, there are certain organisms referred to as bisexual or hermaphroditic organisms. These animals are usually invertebrates such as snails, slugs, bryozoans, trematodes, and barnacles.
The organisms possess both male and female reproductive organs during their life span. Concerning reproduction, some hermaphroditic organisms self-fertilize, while others require a partner.
This was the case with the Red Zonia. Not only did the Red Zonia possess both male and female reproductive organs, they could even choose what to outwardly present as once they reached adulthood.
However, in their society, each member was classified as a “mother” since they worshiped the Ancestor Mother. The title “mother” was also linked to the Red Zonia’s high nurturing instinct.
In fact, even if lovers in a romantic couple took on traditionally ‘masculine’ or ‘feminine’ roles, both parents would still take on a nurturing role for their children. For this reason, it could be said that Red Zonia children had two mothers, sometimes even more depending on the romantic arrangement.
Another common rule in nature is that different species cannot reproduce with each other. However, the Red Zonia also broke this rule without the use of any external magic. Shockingly, the Red zonia could reproduce with all other alien races and species including humans.
It was said that since ancient times, there were even humans who migrated and settled in the Red Zonia domain. However, even when a human interacted romantically with a member of the Reds, the resulting offspring would always appear like the Red Zonia. This was because their genes were just too strong.
Whether it was a human male that got someone of the Red Zonia race pregnant or that a Red Zonia impregnated a human female, the resulting child would undoubtedly be a Red Zonia. And it was the same if the Reds interbred with any other alien races or mystical races!
For this reason, while they were not a typical violent alien race, the Reds were classified under [Reproductive Parasitic Alien Race] in the pages of the Universe Race Canon Guide.
The third group of alienoid beings that populated the White Marsh was called “the Protectors”. The origin of the Protectors was not simple. In fact, their full name was “the Protectors of the Blood God Ring”.
This Blood God Ring was a quasi-divine Sacred Relic that had once belonged to the Blood God. It was said that this ring had a huge world within it; a world almost as big as a planet!
The ring also had many other uses that included casting a variety of magic spells, controlling the tides of war, blood manipulation, and even summoning an avatar of the Blood God.
In the not so distant past, a great war had been fought over this ring at the edge of the Zika world and Small Heaven. This war had been caused by eight Demon Saints, a powerful force that the Zika world could not even support. If not for the interference by emissaries from Small Heaven, the world might have been destroyed.
However, the Blood God Ring was lost in the chaos of this great battle. No one even knew where it was including its protectors.
After losing their purpose, the Protectors settled in the White Marsh. After the years passed by and new generations arose, many had long forgotten the original purpose and responsibilities of their ancestors. Hardly anyone was even searching for the ring anymore.
The other major group that settled in the White Marsh was the Angel Blood Revenants or simply, the “Revenants”.
These were not good people. Although they were extremely secretive, this was an open secret in the White Marsh. One of the main reasons for this conclusion was the existence of Angel Blood Veneration, a technique that used the virgin blood of women to strengthen oneself. It was rumored that this technique had originated from the Revenants before spreading all over the world.
From observing the populations occupying the White Marsh, it was evident that the situation there was murky. Peace and disorder were mixed in together. However, the pressure from the outside world still kept the White Marsh populations relatively united.
From the age of 6, the White Marsh was where Terran grew up. Although the lives of the Etibar family were hard, they worked with what they had and lived a good life.
As Terran’s mother put it, “A happy person doesn’t necessarily have the best things in life. They just work with what they have.”