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Author Topic: Agarilux the Magnificent  (Read 582 times)

RicRider

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Agarilux the Magnificent
« on: September 11, 2018, 06:53:21 PM »

Agarilux the Magnificent - A RimWorld Story

Linnea, the old man and the boy ran through the jungle. They fled through the pouring rain as fast as they could. There had been no time for introductions. Their ship had malfunctioned and their pods had crashed on this forsaken planet. That is, Linnea and the boy had arrived in pods, wearing only the standard issue synthread pants and t-shirts of Cryo Travel Services. When their pods had crashed they could see the gigantic insects closing in from the direction of the sunrise. That’s when the old man called out from behind some trees at the edge of the clearing on the other side of where the insects were.

‘Quickly, this way!’ Yelled the old man as he darted down a narrow path to his left.’I have a boat… near a river… we can get to safety there!’

Now they fled. They fled after the old man because an old man was the safer option. There were at least 5 of the gigantic insects close on their heels. Linnea had seen them in a travel brochure before she was put into cryosleep. One of them was a megaspider, there were two spelopedes and three megascarabs. Despite her combat training in the Academy this was something she knew she couldn’t handle, especially without a weapon.

They arrived at the edge of a river where there was a boat, packed full of supplies. Linnea’s eye instantly drew to the bolt-action rifle and the revolver. There was also a plasteel knife. Not to mention a load of steel and wood, some survival meals and medicine. Things were looking up.

They leapt into the boat and the old man pushed away with the butt of the rifle after untying it from the moor. He picked up a longer piece of wood and began rowing, using it as a makeshift paddle. The water wasn’t too deep so he could guide the boat easily down the stream. The insects leapt into the water and began swimming after them but it quickly became obvious that they were far slower in the water than on land.

Linnea’s pulse slowed and her heart beat a little slower. The adrenaline subsided.

‘So, old man, what’s your name? I owe you… we owe you our lives.’

‘My name is Mianata and I know of a safe place! You two, you both have the mark! You are blessed by Agarilux the Magnificent! You must come with me and I will teach you everything I know of the Great One.’

‘My name is Linnea and I don’t know anything about any mark. I don’t know anything about any Great One either but I thank you for saving my life.’ She looked at the boy. ‘I don’t know you. What’s your name?’

‘I’m White.’

‘That’s it?’

‘That’s it.’

‘Fair enough.’ Linnea looked at him warily. He looked to be about 18 years old, a bit frumpy around the ears. ‘Are you a farmer?’

‘How did you know that…?’ He looked shocked.

‘You look like a farmer. It’s your hair. You’ve obviously never been to a place where people have a sense of fashion.’

‘Now, now, children. That’s not a good start to our great and glorious adventure to discover the true nature of Agarilux the Magnificent! No fighting please. There are enough troubles on this planet without us having to bicker as well. You will see when we get there, I know a wonderful place. And you two, you both have the mark. You will love it there.’

‘What’s this mark you keep speaking of?’ White asked this time.

‘My boy, you grew up on a farm but you always wanted to be somewhere else. You loved plants and your father was a cow farmer. You especially loved mushrooms, but you never had the time you wished you had to explore the forest and learn all you could about them because he made you cook and clean up after the cows all the time.’

‘How in all the Glitterworlds do you know all this about me?’ He looked at both Linnea and Mianata with anger.

“Agarilux the Magnificent told me you would come and the Great One told me everything about you!’

‘Who is this Agarilux?’ Linnea demanded.

‘Linnea, your mother was cruel to you and you fled her house when you were 18. You stole her charge rifle and some packaged survival meals and all her silver and booked a trip on the first CTS ship you could find. You ended up at the Academy of the Stars and you worked hard to be a fighter pilot, practising your shooting skills. But you could never pass the exams and instead you became a starship janitor. You thought this was beneath you and you deserted your post and got onto another CTS ship… and now you’re here. And you have the mark too!’

‘There’s no way you could know all this about us.’ Linnea looked furious. ‘You’d better start explaining things old man.’

‘All in good time, my dear!’ He chuckled as their boat sailed into the mouth of a gigantic cavern that looked like it was going to go deep into the bowels of this RimWorld to who knows where. But Linnea felt strangely comfortable as their boat sailed into the darkness and she relaxed. For some reason, she trusted this old man.

White had calmed down too. He looked visibly relieved as they went into the darkness.

===

Very shortly they arrived at a landing in the caverns. They disembarked from their boat and could see hundreds of glowing mushrooms lining the caverns on either bank. White knew them all, tears streamed from his eyes as he stumbled out of the boat, feet and pants wet up to his knees. But he did not care.

‘They’re all here! I’ve seen these only in botany books! There’s the blue glowstool, the red noku and of course, the tall and purple Agarilux!’

‘Your great one is a mushroom, old man?’ Linnea suddenly connected the dots.

‘Agarilux the Magnificent is the Greatest of All the Mushrooms, young one! In time you will be found worthy and you will meet him too! I have seen him walking in my dreams and in my dreams he talks to me!’

‘If I didn’t know any better I’d say you were high on smokeleaf, Mianata. But I know better and you don’t look stoned to me.’

‘Stoned?!’ Mianata gave her a dark look. ‘You would be wise to stay away from drugs, young lady! We won’t have any of that stuff here!’

‘Calm down, old man. I was just joking. I’m not into that sort of stuff.’

‘What about you, boy? Did I make a mistake when I chose you?’

‘Nope, if I’m taking your meaning. I don’t do any drugs either. That stuff is bad and makes you think funny. Gets you killed.’

‘Smart boy.’

‘Besides, my father was always drunk and high on psycite. It was disgusting to look at. I never want to see him again.’

‘Good. Now… well here we are! This is almost the place. It’s down this tunnel. Quickly, take a weapon and take the survival meals, the medicine and the components that I’ve scavenged. We will need them straight away.’

Linnea found it hard to decide but in the end she chose the bolt-action rifle. 'I'll hunt.'

'Young lady there's only a few rats, hares and iguanas that stumble down here. We will mainly be eating mushrooms. But you're a good shot so you take the rifle.'

'I'll take the knife... for the plants.' White said.

Mianata took the revolver without a word and gestured down the tunnel ahead of them, it was lined with the purple, red and blue mushrooms and it was very easy to see where they were glowing as they provided enough light to see.

‘There is a place at the end of this tunnel, at a confluence of tunnels. We will found our Temple to Agarilux the Magnificent there!’

‘Great.’ Linnea said. ‘I always wanted to be a priestess.’ She humphed sarcastically.

They headed down the tunnel.

===

When they arrived at the place Mianata had mentioned, Linnea and White could not have imagined a place of such beauty.There were three majestic pools of water, two on the west of a gigantic cavern and one on the east. In the middle of the three pools was a rocky area that looked to be a spacious cave with two entrances, one that opened onto the two western pools and another that opened onto the eastern pool. There was a third, smaller opening to the south of the central grotto.

‘Now, boy. You must get to work straight away. We can plant mushrooms anywhere we want. Can you grow the noku yet?’

‘I’m afraid I can’t. I still don’t know enough to plant their spores correctly. But I will learn in time, I promise!’

‘No bother. Then you must harvest the full grown noku and plant Agarilux and glowstools around them. I’ll leave you to figure out where just keep them close to this central grotto. This is where we will found our temple!’

White nodded, an excited gleam in his eye, and got to work. He began collecting Agarilux and glowstool spores and began planting them and tending to his new mushroom garden.

‘Linnea, come and help me get the rest of the stuff, we will need it. We can leave the silver for now but we must secure the steel and the wood. We will start to build our temple with those!’

‘Sure, old man. I’ll help you. I really like it here for some reason. It’s so… peaceful.’

‘Yes, yes, yes. I told you you have the mark!’

They ran back down the tunnel and hauled the steel and the wood to the grotto. By the time they had finished their task Linnea was sweaty and slightly annoyed. She was also bored and wanted to do something else.

‘Old man, I want to do something fun. We’ve been hauling things for hours.’

White was giddy with excitement and looked as happy as a boomalope in the rain.

‘It’s not fair, this kid has been doing what he likes.’

‘Young lady life isn’t fair but you still have time to put together a stone cutting table and lay out some basic plans. Tomorrow you will help me make stone bricks while I build our temple! White will continue working on the garden. But now I must rest. I bid you good night. Find a place to sleep!’

‘Where?’

‘On the ground! It’s warm and refreshing here. Tomorrow we will build shelter and beds!’
« Last Edit: September 11, 2018, 07:10:15 PM by RicRider »
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Jackalvin

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Re: Agarilux the Magnificent
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2018, 10:31:36 PM »

Yes! I've always wanted a detailed story about a shroom cult!

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HQentity

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Re: Agarilux the Magnificent
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2018, 12:27:47 PM »

This is absolutely outstanding, I love this. I feel like it has a similar vibe to an author called "Paul Stewart" - have you heard of him? Thanks for writing this! I eagerly await the next chapter!  8)
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RicRider

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Re: Agarilux the Magnificent
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2018, 12:50:18 PM »

Thank you for your interest in this story! I've been really under the pump with work projects and although I have about 5 days of this mapped out and played through with screenshots and everything I just haven't found the time to finish writing up what I've played so far, let alone fire RimWorld up to keep playing the adventure and let the story play itself out.

Perhaps over the Christmas holidays I'll have a bit of spare time so stay tuned; I'm really eager to get back into this!

I haven't heard of Paul Stewart before you mentioned him but he looks really interesting and I've added his books to my reading list. In case you're wondering it's possible my writing style might be influenced by South American magical realists like Marquez and Borges as well as 1980s fantasy authors like Le Guin and Feist. I've also read a lot of Umberto Eco and Italo Calvino.
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