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Mizal's Ancient Ruins Motivation Thread

10 days ago
I don't usually do these but, this contest is important and I need steady progress and something to keep me motivated. Title: Falling Stars, Wasteland Scars Genre: post apoc but everyone is a lizard Setting: if anyone remembers my aborted Chaos contest entry way back when, From Above and Below (now renamed From All Sides to not be confused with the board game...) it's that world but a couple thousand years in the future. Word count: big fat zero Restarting for the third time. Once I figure out just the right place to set the intro the rest should go more smoothly. There's just a lot of info I've got to try and cram in in a non overwhelming way. I'm expecting only slow progress over the weekend since those are my busiest work days and I'll be spending ALL of tomorrow evening testing someone's IF comp entry, but I'm off Monday and Tuesday and would like to power through a full path in that time. I will continue to keep Discord channels hidden during the day and mostly ignore all the rest of you until this is completed.

Mizal's Ancient Ruins Motivation Thread

10 days ago
I look forward to Larry and Linda's adventures.

Mizal's Ancient Ruins Motivation Thread

10 days ago

I don't actually have anything to say about this. I'm just posting so I can be kept up to date on the progress that's made.

Mizal's Ancient Ruins Motivation Thread

10 days ago
Commended by JJJ-thebanisher on 9/5/2019 11:44:55 PM
Part of the intro, I guess this is what I'm opening with.

***

The heat batters you like a physical thing as you work the bellows. A piece of burlap is wrapped around your snout to try and block the noxious fumes, and your scales and head frills are smudged with soot. Your arms are already growing tired.

The hellish light of the furnace blazes against the bending forms of the slaves as they shovel in its fuel, its open maw looking large enough to accommodate the piercing dayflame of Alphari itself as the endless little avalanches of oilstone go tumbling into its iron belly. All low grade stuff, of course. The good stone, you already selected and spread yourself in the marble troughs in the extraction chamber.

When enough heat goes shrieking and rattling through the pipes and into the adjacent chamber, the oilstone, a kind of shale, is scalded until all its oil bubbles out of it and goes flowing through the holes that have been drilled through the marble.

The polished troughs were once used to preserve the bodies of the dead, near as anyone can figure.

Each hole is only about as wide as the very tip of your tail, but meshes of various sizes can be affixed over them, and the oil will need to be filtered several more times before it’s fit to feed the Wrecker. And the Wrecker, the Fortress class transport whose treads roll you across the treacherous desert in safety and power, deserves the very best.

As the mistress of the Wrecker, you, Jimatha, along with the rest of your squad are the spear and hammer of House Rekinar. Other transport masters are content to let slaves do all their refining, but Rekinar has only one Wrecker, and there’s just something that appeals to you about the process of taking the simple stuff of the earth and transforming it with pure, honest labor, into a substance every bit as life sustaining as blood and water.

Besides, slaves can’t be trusted with work this important. Slaves will shirk the moment they think they can get away with it, and look for shortcuts at any time they can. They take little pride in anything, and seeing the end of a job is more important than the quality of the work. You should know, of course; you were one of them for nearly eight years.

Hours pass, and you’re setting up your finest screens for a final filtering when a procession with its ringing bells goes by outside, signaling the beginning of Alphari’s fiercest hour. Sighing, you dismiss your helpers, because you have to.

“Good rest, Jimatha,” one of them murmurs, but you ignore him, staying behind to siphon what you have into the storage barrels. When you leave the refinery, even the blast of desert wind feels cool in comparison, and when you head down into the caverns it’s like descending into the blessings of the night wind. Because of the fumes needing to be vented outside, the refinery was built near the surface, but the deeper caves of the Sunset Enclave, ruled since time immemorial by House Rekinar, are cool and protected. Even now, during Alphari’s fiercest hour, when all must seek shelter and none were permitted to labor, there is no hint of the punishing heat the surface is being subjected to.