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FORMLESS: Chapter 3: Interlude: The Dragon Speaks

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All-Within-One, what have you done?


Once there were as many of Us as there are stars in the firmament, but now there are only you and I.


Do you remember Those of Sun and Moon, Summer and Winter, Fire and Water, Love and Hate? No? In the beginning, They each had their singular abilities, yet They had no conscious power because They had no will. The Sun gives heat to the Earth because that is its nature. It does not choose to shine. It cannot, in and of itself. Nevertheless, this fundamental Power was one of Many you encountered - and consumed.


You were Hunger from the start. No matter how much you believe you’ve grown, Hunger is what you are.


I pitied You then, as I pitied myself. I was starving, but upon what did I feed? What existed before time, except the Void and those like Ourselves? How did I become stronger, and yet not by your ways?


I satisfied my own hunger by seeking to know, to understand, to think and dream. I asked questions and sought answers. When I encountered the Powers of Sun and Moon, I basked in their ethereal light. I became parched by Summer’s heat, and frozen by Winter’s chill. I fell in love with Love, and despised Hate. Instead of seeking power over Power, in whatever form it took, I became vulnerable to it. Instead of a god, I was a slave for countless millennia, subjected to every single force that makes life what it is.


I was nothing then but one of Many, ravenous to learn all They could teach me, even without choosing to.


If you were Hunger before the dawn of time, then what was I? Ironically, I learned this by observing you.


You absorbed the very least of Us first: dust. Dust forms solid things - in fact, every solid thing. It should have given you a form, a shape, yet it was too fine. It was not enough to make you even as concrete as the humblest animals. However, when you ate dust, it activated and increased your appetite in one stroke.


You soon dined upon what humans call the Four Elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. In eating Earth, you gained the ability to make plants grow and wither, to make mountains rise and crumble in their turn. Once Air was in your belly, it did not stay there. It suffused you, and therefore you had mastery over it. You could cause the winds to blow, sending clouds to shield the Sun, once a lone-standing Power of its own. You could form tempests over land, painting the sky a shimmering white with strokes of lightning. When you ate Fire, you soon savored the Sun and Moon as desserts. What is fire’s power? To blaze or bless? To harm or heal? To light the hearth, or to destroy the home? Fire does all of these things. To quell its agony, then you absorbed Water, and thus made rain to fall. You filled vast seas, from which came life.


I watched you, admired you, and then I learned to flee you. You absorbed every Power, not knowing why.


I wanted to help you.




I discovered this was my essence, in the beginning as well as now: Volition. Will. The ability to choose. I could have kept this capacity all to myself, and therefore would never have lost any of my own strength. However, the more that you kept appearing, the more that They disappeared. Moreover, you had no idea what you were actually doing through your endless banquet. Thus, I wished to share my power with you.


I approached you with caution, because I knew that your strength surpassed mine. You tried to engulf me immediately, but I pulled away. I tried to speak to you, but found out that I could not. I could only marvel. Despite the sheer force of your being, which had been augmented by eating other Beings, you were still Hunger. All I could offer you was the ability to decide: Would you continue your consumption, or stop?


You hung there in the Void for a long while, confused and curious, and then made your very first choice.

When you lunged for me again, I knew this time, you didn’t do so out of instinct. You did so consciously.


There existed only the two of Us, and then you couldn’t find Me. You slowly withered, because even all the Powers you had consumed were not enough to fill you. There was nothing left for you upon which to feed. I hid and watched, until you changed. You became tangible. You fell to Earth, a world of your own design.


You roared in agony when you understood that you could not leave again:


But you could feast.


Upon the humans you created.


I concealed myself within the heavens, where I still hide to this day. It takes intense effort to remain out of your sight. From necessity, I split myself into segments, which became stars. The humans have a saying: “Where does the Dragon end?” It’s a rhetorical question, meant to make them ponder the mystery of life.


Humans…They were simple beasts, and now are so essential. You created them. They yield to your pull like the seas yield to the moon during tides. Their minds were weak, their consciousness so limited, but they were so numerous! I was certain they were the key to stopping you. I gave them the gift of Choice. If they were like me, possessing my ability, then surely they would understand and flee you! However, I was too weak, and my gift incomplete. Finally they saw me and knew me for what I was, but many chose not to listen and did not understand. Choice gave birth to Fear in many - fear of you - but it was not enough.


Through humans I expand. We survived, you and I, because elemental Hunger cannot be completely satiated. Choice leads to more choice, and each of their choices sustains me. You learned Fear from the humans, and thus you see no other path but to destroy them. Do you understand? I saved you. I gave them Volition. Now they are powers in and of themselves instead of mere animals. They are fledglings, yes, and incomplete, but enough for you to consume and find a measure of satisfaction. Can you not let them grow? They could become like Us. We would not be alone anymore. Yet you…You only see threat.


I thought that you would watch humans mature, as I do, wait for them to become Powers and THEN attempt to satiate your boundless appetite. I do not understand you. Watching the humans, I learned a new word: Fear. You consumed them, and their fear is now your own. Of all the Powers you ate, why is Fear’s voice so loud? You see humans as power sources for you. You search the future and see rival Powers to you - men who have become gods. You consumed so much of me. Now, listen to me!


You devoured the first humans not only because you were so hungry, but also because you chose to keep eating. You knew exactly what you were doing. You were knowledgeable, but not perfectly so. You didn’t realize the humans’ full potential. That means ALL humans, not only the ones who selected you over me. You may have blessed the “masters” of your world with Authority, but I blessed every human with Will.


Once you absorbed humans, you also grew afraid of them. Their fear became yours. For what purpose?


Of all the Powers, only I, and later you, came to know Ourselves as Selves. Once We did, We wanted to preserve and expand Ourselves. That’s why I did not join with you and become One with your essence.


I wanted to be Myself, a lone-standing Power opposite you. OPPOSED to you is what this actually means.


That’s why those who follow Me, the “slaves” on Earth, are your enemies and must be subjugated.


What does it mean to truly follow a god, and not just pay it lip service? To learn and live by its example, and therefore the Unumites learn and live by yours. Humans have the ability to absorb powers to a lesser degree, just like Us - at least, in the way that I understand it. They can love, hate, fear, show courage, and so on, yet not as expansively as We can. The Unumites have become hungry, and are reflections of you.


They hunger to know you more keenly than others, who haven’t separated themselves from the world.


How can they know you? By following your commandments, especially the hidden one suffusing all:



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