Epoch Star

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Stories and Legends

Birth of Life
Unearthed Darkness
Advent of Mandrala
Dawn of Destruction
Ignus Invasion
Eye of the Maelstrom
Rising Star
The Fallen
A Bitter End

Unearthed Darkness



Ages ago, before any race had so much as risen above the feral beasts of their individual home worlds, the Enlar had already mastered the art of interstellar flight. Their huge and powerful brains, composing the majority of their body masses, had brought them to the pinnacle of the galaxy’s early technological achievements. They traveled amongst the stars in gargantuan space-faring vessels—mapping out the countless uncharted solar systems and anomalies of their surrounding galaxy.

Though these starships traveled with agonizing slowness, taking decades to journey from origin to destination, their voluminous hulls were crammed with enough provisions to sustain them for generations. Thousands of Enlar were aboard each vessel, and millions of these vessels scattered across the galaxy in an unending quest to shine as much light as possible upon their still dark and mysterious universe.

An ordinary Enlar Observer class starship, whose name has been lost within the annals of history, came upon a barren, stone sphere orbiting lifelessly about some unnamed star. First appearing to the Enlar as a sort of huge, wayward asteroid, the planet possessed virtually no atmosphere, and its surface was completely blanketed in a convoluted network of deep craters and enormous canyons.


Though at the time it was impossible for them to realize, their recent discovery would ultimately become notoriously renowned amongst the entirety of the known universe as “Old Ignus.”


The Enlar perfunctorily scanned its vastness with their sensors, expecting nothing of significance. Their departure was planned almost immediately upon their arrival, and just as their engine’s powered up for retreat into the black void of uncharted space—something incredible happened.

They were completely dumbfounded. The Enlar had believed that the existence of any life upon such a hostile world was all but impossible. But, to their great surprise, the entire globe soon became overridden with the presence of countless snake-like beasts, which spilled forth from the depths of the crater-ridden rock from the various gaps and fissures that scarred its hideous face.

Gawking with unbridled fascination, the Enlar watched these creatures boil to the surface as if in direct response to their vessel’s radiation-based scanners. Their sinewy bodies, averaging some twenty meters in length, tapered to a tail-like point at each of their posterior ends. Like giant centipedes, their bellies were lined with hundreds of sporadically convulsing talons. Their huge, eyeless heads pointed upward to the orbiting Enlar starship, mouths gaping wide open to reveal an enormous gullet bristling with a galaxy of flashing teeth, and razor-sharp fangs.

And in the midst of this astonishment, a blasting message crackled from the Enlar loudspeakers to every corner of their starship’s capricious volume.


“We have been long awaiting your pres-senc-se…” began the broken transmission from the world below. It was the sound of countless scratchy voices rasping together, slowly, and near inaudibly soft beneath the static din of the weak signal. They overlapped one another’s words in a disharmonious blend of slithering voices. It was as if they had one mind: one purpose.  

“Our pros-sperouss s-civilization wass des-stroyed s-centuriess ago in a…natural dis-sas-ster. We are all that remainss of our sspec-siess. Every day our provis-sionss grow more sscarc-se. Pleas-se…help uss, for we are sstarving, and are willing give you anything that you want from uss!”


The Enlar, though utterly marveled at their first encounter with another form of intelligent organism, at once grew fearful. It was their nature to be instinctively frightened by the unknown, and there was something in particular about these serpentine beasts that struck some ominous chord of fascinated horror deep within their psyche. They reminded the Enlar of something from their past, something that screamed out with deadly warning from the echoes of their ancestral memories….

With their potent intelligence, the Enlar quickly rationalized amongst themselves innumerable reasons as to why they should leave; but such efforts were ultimately proven futile. In the end, it was their driving interest, their neurotic obsession to attain every last available detail about the mysteries of the universe—their gift of creation, from Lord Order, himself—that compelled the Enlar to stay.


It was this that sealed their fate.


For a great length of time, their ship hovered above the planet in high orbit, observing all that happened with their primitive scanning instruments, and ignoring the incessantly pitiful cries for aide of the starving creatures below.

They diligently watched, with cold-hearted reserve, as the giant serpents collapsed lifelessly to the earth by the thousand. And it was not long before the Enlar began to wonder exactly what caused this world’s obvious devastation; exactly why these creatures were presently starving to death; and, most importantly, how they had simply known that the Enlar had arrived.

“Help uss!” the slithering beasts never ceased to wail, in their utter desperation. “And we will give you whatever you want from uss!”

And when the answers to these questions did not come, for all the careful scrutiny and speculation that their prodigious brains could afford, the Enlar grew impatient. It seemed that the more knowledge they gathered, the more riddles came to surface, and the more insatiable their appetite to learn became. It was then that their inexplicable interest in the strange creatures, catalyzed by their paranoia into an almost obsessive compulsion, became manifest in their actions.


“We will provide you with enough food to survive,” the Enlar then stated flatly, causing, for the first time since their arrival, a distinct lull to the unending transmissions from the world below. “But you must yield to our demands...”

“Anything” the slithering voices responded. “Pleas-se hurry…we are sstarving…”

“You must provide us with one of your kind,” the Enlar then asserted. “A non-living specimen for us to examine, ‘freshly terminated’ for our research.”


And so the Ignus made haste for the preparation of a corpse, with which to deliver to their Enlar benefactors. Mere minutes passed before the Enlar received yet another transmission, informing them that the desired specimen had been acquired, and was now ready for transfer to the orbiting vessel.

But the Enlar, skeptical of the creatures’ seemingly innocent countenance (and downright terrified to go anywhere near the planet’s surface), merely sent a small, resource-gathering probe down to the world below.

Descending through the planet’s thin atmosphere, the unmanned probe traveled to the specified coordinates. But, upon acquisition of the corpse, the autonomous machine then blasted off, without hesitation, to the safety of orbit, without so much as providing a single scrap of food to the starving peoples.

Afraid of their giant, slithering bodies and lacerating appendages, the delicate Enlar quickly calculated that it would have been a grave error, on their behalf, had they provided the potentially deadly serpents with any sustenance: an unforgivable act of foolishness. In much this same fashion, they also quickly concluded that, upon the advent of their specimen, they would promptly leave, having acquired sufficient data on this striking phenomenon….


Before the creature was so much as brought onboard, a number of detailed biological scans were done on its transport vessel. And once these various, drudging, time-consuming tests had all confirmed that not even the faintest spark of life existed within the serpentine beast aboard, the small carrier probe was then carefully loaded into the main hull of its mother ship.

Still, the Enlar were not yet satisfied, as they continued to scan the miniature vessel with every useful instrument at their disposal. They began to feel firmly convinced that the organic cargo was, indeed, lifeless, and so they then decided to open the main hatch upon the small probe’s hull—under the careful scrutiny of several dozen armed guards.

In all their observations of the broken world below them, the Enlar had never bore witness to a creature of such immense size. The beast before them was so large, that they were unable to view the entire length of it colossal body in a single glance. And so, uttering great cries of elation at their marvelous fortune, the Enlar inched their way closer, slowly boarding the small transport vessel: it was the perfect specimen


Completely overwhelmed with fascination, each Enlar present stared with his lone, glistening eye at the monster’s countless three-pronged talons, lining the entire 30-meter length of its scaly underbelly. The behemoth’s enormous mouth was closed shut, as it now lay resting lifelessly upon the probe’s metallic floor, protecting its deadly teeth from their view.

Like timid scavengers preparing for a feast, the Enlar continued their way closer. Their writhing, electrified tentacles sparked with mystified interest, and their crab-like legs tapped frantically against the metal floor in anticipation of the monster’s dissection. Surrounding the beast in a tight circle, they crowd of meaty, brain-like organisms began their experimentation upon the beast.

No one knows the exact transpiration of the following events. Some speculate that it was, perhaps, the Enlar’s electrical appendages. Other scholars maintain a firm understanding that the monster’s latency was completely controlled by will. But, regardless of the cause, the effect was all the same.


The monster’s body, having been in perfect hibernation, and devoid of any metabolic activity whatsoever, proved too thick a veil of deception for the Enlars’ delicate sensors to penetrate, until it was too late…

            The gargantuan serpent began to writhe and twist violently—exploding to life as it effortlessly extricated itself from the tiny probe. The hull of the beast’s container was shattered like a hollow eggshell, crushing to death all those helpless Enlar within. Rising to its full height, the monster’s elongated body arched upward and cleaved through the ceiling of the cargo bay as if it were a mere sheet of tin foil.

Then, before the terrified throng of Enlar, the beast's mouth slowly opened to reveal an arsenal of pointed blades, sparkling wet with saliva. Its expansive craw, noisome with the stench of its internal fumes, was a yawning black hole of death and decay. And at once, the Enlar were reminded of their past—and the blaring pleas of mercy from their long-dead ancestors rang through their brains in remembrance of the ancient predators of their birth world.


The huge serpent’s slashing talons then detracted from their sheathes and began lacerating to shreds anything that came within the grasp of their razor-sharp edges. Its protracted, slithering body crashed through the thin metal walls of the surrounding vessel, laying waste to all that came into contact with the vehement motions of its meteoric mass. The surrounding victims screamed with high-pitched terror as their electric tentacles were systematically ripped from their bodies, and the soft severed flesh of their oversized brains shoved down the gigantic gullet of the starving colossus.

Mere seconds after its awakening, the monster had already consumed its entire greeting entourage. Minutes later, its huge, trashing body had nearly ripped its way throughout the entire vastness of the Enlar vessel, devouring all within.

Those few Enlar unfortunate enough to be spared from the monstrous serpent’s initial wrath were forced to reveal the secrets of their species’ hard-won accomplishments. The creature took great delight in its methodic torture of the overly sensitive Enlar, who seemed to experience pain at a greatly magnified intensity. The Enlar, helpless to do anything while their skin and body parts were ruthlessly pealed asunder, were soon horrified to discover how fast the enormous beast could master the complex, procedural methods necessary to pilot their space-faring vessel….


Not much time had passed, before the behemoth lowered its recently captured spaceship to the surface of its world. The main hatch of the colossal vessel opened to reveal the victorious Ignus champion.

The few remaining Enlar captives were hoisted like trophies into the air. Before them stood an ocean of writhing snakes—stretching further into the distance than what their powerful eyes could see.

“Leviathan! Leviathan!” the sea of serpents screamed in their simultaneously slithering voices, as the Enlar were then tossed into their midst like discarded entrails to a pack of ravenous hounds. “You have brought us our first sscrapss of food ssins-ce the last Great Feas-st!”

The Ignus serpents snapped and cackled with festive delight, fighting amongst themselves for even the smallest bits of these delicious morsels. The Enlar were ripped to stringy strips of flesh upon impact of the crowd, shrieking with hell-born excruciation while they were devoured with the starvation of a hundred years’ hibernation.


“I have brought you more than that!” Leviathan then roared in its great, booming voice as it stood before the gigantic space-faring vessel. “I have brought to you all the stars in the sky, which we are soon to plunder! This world of ours has been sapped dry of its flesh, utterly destroyed by the ravishing nature of our kind—but there are many more amidst the heavens that will fill our bellies for every age to come!”


Epoch Star  - Space Adventure  / Space RPG / Space Game - Free to download and play

©2004 Battleline Games