Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Dhole Rituals

   In primal times the men of Lemuria served the outer goddess Shub-Niggurath, she who is called the Dark Mother of a thousand young.  A great temple was built to honor the goddess and her jade altars were stained red with the blood of human sacrifice. The terrible first born Children of Shub Niggurath came to dwell in the forests of Lemuria and these places were made sacred to them, these things spawning abominations with beasts and even upon the daughters of the lemurians. For their veneration of the outer god the Lemurians were rewarded with lush harvests and became wealthy beyond all other tribes of men.

  Then the Picts came to Lemuria in their long ships decorated with skulls of men and  beasts. The Picts were mighty warriors who acknowledged no deity save the war-god Cruuach, who had decreed that the world belonged to those with the will and strength to take it. In the field of battle they slaughtered the Lemurians and even the abominations of the Dark Mother fell to their spears, for in those days Pictish wizards had knowledge of the Seal of Koth which made iron as poison to those things from outside.

    The Lemurian priests begged Shub-Niggurath for aid. In a single fortnight they sacrificed a thousand virgins in the garden of the great temple, the ground become as red mud, soaked with blood that nourished the strange and unwholesome plants that grew there. At last the Dark Mother appeared to them, she came in a form so exquisite the young acolytes gouged their eyes from the sockets, wishing her beauty be their last sight. The Dark Mother spoke, "From across the void I have watched these foul men defile my land and slay the children of my own blood. It shall end now. I shall give to thee formulae to rouse the Dholes from their sleep in the deep earth, let those devouring worms feast and cleanse the land". The Dark Mother laid her hand upon the head of the groveling archpriest, words older than the stars flowed into his mind. He fell to the ground numb with knowledge.

   The archpriest was alone when he awoke; Shub-Niggurath had taken the other clergy and acolytes as tribute. The high priest took hammer and chisel to carve the alien words that gnawed at his mind, setting them forever into the temple walls. Then he traveled to the edge of the pictish camp as his god had instructed. He could hear the useless cries for mercy from his countrymen as the Picts cast them alive into flaming pyres, hatred overcame fear in the archpriest and he at last spoke aloud the formulae that would call up the terrible Dholes.

      It was so; the titan worms rose and swallowed the screaming Picts. But their hunger was not satisfied, they consumed all the men and beasts of that ancient land, till nothing of flesh lived in Lemuria. Only at the oceans did the Devourers stop, for the mystery of water is beyond the mind of the Dhole. The Devourers turned away, burrowing through space, time, and dreams, back to their home deep beneath the Crypts of N'kai.

 For eons the land was empty of living things but in time men returned to the Lemurian continent and inhabited the ruins of the previous race. Wisely they sealed the Temple of Shub-Niggurath and when that land sank beneath the waves the Dhole formulae was lost in that forgotten temple on the ocean's floor.

1 comment:

Jack Faust said...

Oh, lovely! I have one of the original versions of The Dark Mother. It arrived - at least at the time - mysteriously on my doorstep between my late teens and early 20s. It was the most baffling Lovecraftian present I've ever received (until the friend later confessed to ordering it), and thanks for making the piece.

My hat is off to you and the piece. Your art kicks ass.