Excerpts from the Gospel of Zalius, First Chapter of the Testament of Cleansing
-1st of Limestone, 118-
I arrived months ago, but only today have I decided to chronicle what will surely be the small and meaningless nature of my life. They promised glory, riches, a life of pleasure and luxury such as was to be found nowhere else in all dwarfdom. I was shown messages sent by my loved ones, my friends and relatives, even a special summons from my famous aunt Yalius the Countess of Headshoots (an honor I surely did not deserve). I survived the endless trek across barren wastes, survived attacks by giant eagles and feral sheep. And when we arrived, where were the sparkling gates of diamond? The welcoming road paved in purest adamantine? No, a blasted hell hole, foul miasmas rising across the uncaring rocks, and the skulls of the dead littering everything. Indeed, some of the skulls were more lively than the inhabitants of this thrice-cursed pit!
But I persevered. All I wanted was to do my job, and earn a little pay, and have a dwelling to call my own. One day I would raise a family. I never wanted to stand out, no; other members of my family had tried that, and look at what it had gotten them!
But I'm no miner, never was, never will be. And when I showed up, they asked me what I could do. “Miller,” I said, “I'm a miller.” “Miner, eh?” crowed the disgusting half-wit who was apparently in charge. “'Ere's yer pick then sweetie.” I almost stove his wretched head in, but fear of the monster HolisticDetective stayed my hand. What a creature! All dwarves should aspire to such strength! Such prowess! Such....power...
-2nd of Limestone, 118-
Horror! Oh most foul fate, why such cruelty to one who only seeks guidance and a place to belong? The overseer, Kennel, declared his lifework completed (by me and mine, no less. How is it his accomplishment?) and so retired to spend his days gutting fish and chasing noble tail. I was dragged before Count KataraniSword and ordered at hammer-face to take over where he left off. Apparently my aunt had left instructions that I was to be appointed overseer in her absence; she is even supposed to have left detailed instructions for the running of Headshoots! I want nothing to do with the management of this hellhole! The fortress is a rats-nest of tunnels, failed delusions of grandeur, and hasty attempts to appease previous rulers. How can I hope to understand such a place? Who could ever know enough to run it? I hope that her instructions can help. I don't know what to do! I've never been under so much stress!
At least I got to see HolisticDetective again. She is truly as a god above dwarves...
-4th of Limestone, 118-
After much searching, I found a document that mentions the name of my august aunt, Countess Yalius. Although it has not been written by her, it appears to bear her signature of approval (which is oddly coarse and poorly drawn. I would have thought her runesmithy more refined). The actual plan was drawn up, presumably on her orders, by one Ur Getting Fatter, a previous overseer. While I do not fully understand the wisdom of this plan, I will do my best to follow her wise direction.
Apparently, the fortress is suffering from an 'unfair distribution of basic resources.' It seems that the sage Yalius was surprisingly enlightened; the plan calls for the repurposing of all “throne rooms” and the equal distribution of chores. It is refreshing to see a noble call for class equality, and I am sure that, with Headshoots' position as capital of our civilization my, or rather, Yalius' brilliant step forward for equality will begin a sweeping transformation of all dwarfdom!
After removing all property from the hands of noble and “boorjoisee” (whatever that is) alike, I have settled down to consider how best to proceed. I only hope that HolisticDetective will not haunt my dreams again. I am on the verge of madness already, with the responsibility of directing the seat of all dwarves the world over on my small, untested sholders. All I ever wanted was to belong, to be part of something greater. Let us hope that I can withstand the fulfillment of my wish.
-10th of Limestone, 118-
It is decided, and now my plan for the salvation of Headshoots proceeds apace. The noble have been stripped of their properties, with the exception of their tombs (which are already engraved, and therefore pointless to repurpose). A great accounting must be held! All of the possesions, demanded by these leeches over the years, must be found, melted, reused! For the great plan, the one and only plan, must continue. I will not let my ancestors down! The memory of Queen Sankis must not be allowed to die! And we must all strive to become perfect dwarves, great and strong and industrious.
To this end, I have ordered all precious artifacts melted to their base materials that they made be remade as needed. Dwarf society will no longer be held hostage by the strictures of the past!
Naturally, the nobles are unhappy about this, expressing their anger in mandates and price changes. But I have at least one ally. HolisticDetective looks well upon this work. I can tell, you see. Oh, certainly, she has not deigned to notice me, but I can feel her approval all the same. I will follow the plan as it was given me! I will not let her down.
-20th of Limestone, 118-
A revelation came to me in my sleep. My purpose in life is now clear. The moment of truth is not yet upon me, but soon, soon, soon all shall know me for who I am, and all shall recognize their place in the world.
Yalius never saw the truth. Her schemes, while useful for my newfound purpose, were shortsighted, and strangely self-destructive. I, on the other hand, will bring truth and light to dwarfkind, not just economic equality. None will be able to resist the changes that are to come, not even the plants themselves can rebel, struggle though they may.
-1st of Sandstone, 118-
The elven merchants arrived today. They have no part to play in the times that are to come. I sent our broker with instructions to seize some of their goods and send them on their way; hopefully this will give them pause and keep them from returning to taint the purity that Headshoots shall become. Their nonsense about trees is given no heed. Cannot they see that the only one worthy of their worship stands before them?
-15th of Sandstone, 118-
I found today the drawings for Headshoot's mighty defense, a great engine of terror which has claimed the lives of many. Although such sentimentality is inappropriate for the new dwarves we shall become, I have ordered corrected a small problem in its function which caused the need for periodic pumping to replenish its magma flow. It should provide a steady flow from now on without the need for any dwarves to waste their divinely granted time on the frivolous turning of handles. We must better ourselves, not our creations.
Some new disciples have arrived. A few appear distantly related to dwarves who once lived within these walls; the rest are unfamiliar to me, but they will be brought to see the dark, and they will understand. The transformation shall be upon as soon, and all shall be born anew!
We shall be washed in the divine light of the dark earth!
-30th of Sandstone-
At last, the time is upon us!
I am revealed to all dwarfkind. For I am Zalius, The One True Prophet of our God HOLISTICDETECTIVE! All shall bow before HOLISTICDETECTIVE and revel in her works! We shall all be cleansed as she was, and if our faith is strong enough it shall be an armor of righteousness even as Trailmachines, and we shall emerge from the fires unscathed.
I have released the transforming flood. Ask yourselves, will you, as HOLISTICDETECTIVE, wade across the fire? Will you abandon thought of self in pursuit of your duty?
The faith of the just, the pure, the true shall survive, and all the wickedness of this pit of sin shall be cleansed in the blood of the stones. Come to me, for I am salvation! Believe and ye shall live; but those whose souls are sunk in perfidy, those nobles and their supporters who cannot see the truth, they shall be consumed! The Coming of the Time of HD is at hand!
We apologize for any inconvenience.
Summer now. Going to try to have the next update up tomorrow night. I have dwarfed SWATJester, Solomon, Munin, NiceAaron, and Lackloss. Let me know if you want in, there are a few unclaimed migrants.