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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

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The Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

First Circle of Zerthimon

*Know* that we are the First People. Once all was chaos. The First People were thought drawn from chaos. When the First People came to *know* themselves, they were chaos no longer, and became flesh.

With their thoughts and *knowing* of matter, the People shaped the First World and dwelled there with their *knowing* to sustain them.

Yet the flesh was new to the People and with it, the People came not to *know* themselves. The flesh gave rise to new thoughts. Greed and hates, pains and joys, jealousies and doubts. All of these fed on each other and the minds of the People were divided. In their division, the People were punished.

The emotions of the flesh were strong. The greed and hates, the pains and joys, the jealousies and doubts, all of these served as a guiding stone to enemies. In becoming flesh, the First People became enslaved to those who *knew* flesh only as tools for their will. *Know* these beasts were the *illithids.*

The *illithids* were a race that had come not to *know* themselves. They had learned how to make other races not *know* themselves.

They were the tentacled ones. They lived in flesh and saw flesh as tools for their will. Their blood was as water and they shaped minds with their thoughts. When the *illithids* came upon the People, the People were a people no more. The People became slaves.

The *illithids* took the People from the First World and brought them to the False Worlds. As the People labored upon the False Worlds, the *illithids* taught them the Way of the Flesh. Through them, the People came to *know* loss. They came to *know* suffering. They came to *know* death, both of the body and mind. They came to *know* what it is to be the herd of another and have their flesh consumed. They came to *know* the horror of being made to feel joy in such things.

The Unbroken Circle is the *knowing* of how the People lost themselves. And how they came to *know* themselves again.

Second Circle of Zerthimon (Scripture of Steel)

*Know* that flesh cannot mark steel. *Know* that steel may mark flesh. In *knowing* this, Zerthimon became free.

*Know* that the tentacled ones were of flesh. They relied on the flesh and used it as tools for their will. One of the places where flesh served their will were the Fields of Husks on the False Worlds of the *illithids.*

The Fields were where the bodies of the People were cast after the *illithids* had consumed their brains. When the brain had been devoured, the husks came to be fertilizer to grow the poison-stemmed grasses of the *illithids.* Zerthimon worked the Fields with no *knowing* of himself or what he had become. He was a tool of flesh, and the flesh was content.

It was upon these fields that Zerthimon came to *know* the scripture of steel. During one of the turnings, as Zerthimon tilled the Fields with his hands, he came across a husk whose brain remained within it. It had not been used as food. Yet it was dead.

The thought that one of the husks had died a death without serving as food for the *illithids* was a thought Zerthimon had difficulty understanding. From that thought, came a desire to *know* what had happened to the husk.

Embedded in the skull of the husk was a steel blade. It had pierced the bone. Zerthimon realized that was what had killed the husk. The steel had marked the flesh, but the flesh had not marked the steel.

Zerthimon took the blade and studied its surface. In it, he saw his reflection. It was in the reflection of the steel that Zerthimon first *knew* himself. Its edge was sharp, its will the wearer's. It was the blade that would come to be raised against Gith when Zerthimon made the Pronouncement of Two Skies.

Zerthimon kept the blade for many turnings, and many were the thoughts he had about it. He used it in the fields to aid his work. In using it, he thought about how it was not used.

The *illithids* were powerful. Zerthimon had believed that there was nothing that they did not *know.* Yet the *illithids* never carried tools of steel. They only used flesh as tools. Everything was done through flesh, for the tentacled ones were made of flesh and they *knew* flesh. Yet steel was superior to flesh. When the blade had killed the husk, it was the flesh that had been weaker than the steel.

It was then that Zerthimon came to *know* that flesh yielded to steel. In *knowing* that, he came to *know* that steel was stronger than the *illithids.*

Steel became the scripture of the People. *Know* that steel is the scripture by which the People came to *know* freedom.

Third Circle (Submerge the Will)

Zerthimon labored many turnings for the *illithid* Arlathii Twice-Deceased and his partnership in the cavernous heavens of the False Worlds. His duties would have broken the backs of many others, but Zerthimon labored on, suffering torment and exhaustion.

It came to pass that the *illithid* Arlathii Twice-Deceased ordered Zerthimon before him in his many-veined galleria. He claimed that Zerthimon had committed slights of obstinance and cowardice against his partnership. The claim had no weight of truth, for Arlathii only wished to *know* if flames raged within Zerthimon's heart. He wished to *know* if Zerthimon's heart was one of a slave or of a rebel.

"Zerthimon surrendered to the *illithid* punishment rather than reveal his new-found strength. He *knew* that were he to show the hatred in his heart, it would serve nothing, and it would harm others that felt as he. He chose to endure the punishment and was placed within the Pillars of Silence so he might suffer for a turning."

Lashed upon the Pillars, Zerthimon moved his mind to a place where pain could not reach, leaving his body behind. He lasted a turning, and when he was brought before Arlathii Twice-Deceased, he gave gratitude for his punishment to the *illithid* as was custom. In so doing, he proved himself a slave in the *illithid* eyes while his heart remained free.

By enduring and quenching the fires of his hatred, he allowed Arlathii Twice-Deceased to think him weak. When the time of the Rising came, Arlathii was the first of the *illithid* to *know* death by Zerthimon's hand and die a third death.

Fourth Circle (Vilquar's Eye)

*Know* that the Rising of the People against the *illithid* was a thing built upon many ten-turnings of labor. Many of the People were gathered and taught in secret the ways of defeating their *illithid* masters. They were taught to shield their minds, and use them as weapons. They were taught the scripture of steel, and most importantly, they were given the *knowing* of freedom.

Some of the People learned the nature of freedom and took it into their hearts. The *knowing* gave them strength. Others feared freedom and kept silent. But there were those that *knew* freedom and *knew* slavery, and it was their choice that the People remain chained. One of these was Vilquar.

Vilquar saw no *freedom* in the Rising, but opportunity. He saw that the *illithid* had spawned across many of the False Worlds. Their Worlds numbered so many that their vision was turned only outwards, to all they did not already touch. Vilquar's eye saw that much took place that the *illithid* did not see. To the Rising, the *illithid* were blinded.

Vilquar came before his master, the *illithid* Zhijitaris, with the *knowing* of the Rising. Vilquar added to his chains and offered to be their eyes against the Rising. In exchange, Vilquar asked that he be rewarded for his service. The *illithid* agreed to his contract.

At the bonding of the contract, a dark time occurred. Many were betrayals Vilquar committed and many were the People that the *illithids* fed upon to stem the Rising. It seemed that the Rising would die before it could occur, and the *illithid* were pleased with Vilquar's eye.

It was near the end of this dark time when Zerthimon came to *know* Vilquar's treacheries. In *knowing* Vilquar's eye, Zerthimon forced the Rising to silence itself, so that Vilquar might think at last his treacheries had succeeded, and the Rising had fallen. He *knew* that Vilquar's eye was filled only with the reward he had been promised. He would see what he wished to see.

With greed beating in his heart, Vilquar came upon the *illithid* Zhijitaris and spoke to his master of his success. He said that the Rising had fallen, and the *illithids* were safe to turn their eyes outwards once more. He praised their wisdom in using Vilquar's eye, and he asked them for his reward.

In his greed-blindness, Vilquar had forgotten the *knowing* of why the People had sought freedom. He had lost the *knowing* of what slavery meant. He had forgotten what his *illithid* masters saw when they looked upon him. And so Vilquar's betrayal of the People was ended with another betrayal. Vilquar came to *know* that when Vilquar's eye has nothing left to see, Vilquar's eye is useless.

The *illithid* gave to Vilquar his reward, opening the cavity of his skull and devouring his brain. Vilquar's corpse was cast upon the Fields of Husks so its blood might water the poison-stemmed grasses.

Fifth Circle (Power of One)

Zerthimon was the first to *know* the way of freedom. Yet it was not he that first came to *know* the way of rebellion.

The *knowing* of rebellion came to the warrior-queen Gith, one of the People. She had served the *illithids* upon many of the False Worlds as a soldier, and she had come to *know* war and carried it in her heart. She had come to *know* how others might be organized to subjugate others. She *knew* the paths of power, and she *knew* the art of taking from the conquerors the weapons by which they could be defeated. Her mind was focused, and both her will and her blade were as one.

The turning in which Zerthimon came to *know* Gith, Zerthimon ceased to *know* himself. Her words were as fires lit in the hearts of all who heard her. In hearing her words, he wished to *know* war. He *knew* not what afflicted him, but he *knew* he wished to join his blade to Gith. He wished to give his hate expression and share his pain with the *illithid.*

Gith was one of the People, but her *knowing* of herself was greater than any Zerthimon had ever encountered. She *knew* the ways of flesh, she *knew* the *illithids* and in *knowing* herself, she was to *know* how to defeat them in battle. The strength of her *knowing* was so great, that all those that walked her path came to *know* themselves.

Gith was but one. Her strength was such that it caused others to *know* their strength. And Zerthimon laid his steel at her feet.

Sixth Circle (Balance in All Things)

Upon the Blasted Plains, Zerthimon told Gith there cannot be two skies. In the wake of his words, came war.

So it came to pass that the People had achieved victory over their *illithid* masters. They *knew* freedom. Yet before the green fires had died from the battlefield, Gith spoke of continuing the war. Many, still filled with the bloodlust in their hearts, agreed with her. She spoke of not merely defeating the *illithids,* but destroying all *illithids* across the Planes. After the *illithids* had been exterminated, they would bring war to all other races they encountered.

In Gith's heart, fires raged. She lived in war, and in war, she *knew* herself. All that her eyes saw, she wanted to conquer.

Zerthimon spoke the beginnings of that which was against Gith's will. He spoke that the People already *knew* freedom. Now they should *know* themselves again and mend the damage that had been done to the People. Behind his words were many other hearts of the People who were weary of the war against the *illithid.*

*Know* that Gith's heart was not Zerthimon's heart on this matter. She said that the war would continue. The *illithid* would be destroyed. Their flesh would be no more. Then the People would claim the False Worlds as their own. Gith told Zerthimon that they would be under the same sky in this matter. The words were like bared steel.

From Zerthimon came the Pronouncement of Two Skies. In the wake of his words came war.

Seventh Circle (Missile of Patience)

*Know* that the Rising of the People against the *illithid* was a thing built upon many turnings. Many were the People who lived and died under time's blade while the Rising was shaped.

The Rising was shaped upon a slow foundation. Steel was gathered so that it might mark *illithid* flesh. A means of *knowing* the movements of the *illithids* were established, at first weak and confused, then stronger, like a child finding its voice. When the movements were *known,* then the *illithids* were observed. In observing them, their ways of the mind were *known.*

When the ways of the *illithid* were *known,* many of the People were gathered and taught in secret the means to shield their minds, and the way to harness their will as weapons. They were taught the scripture of steel, and most importantly, they were given the *knowing* of freedom.

These things were not learned quickly. The *knowing* of much of the ways was slow, and in all these things, time's weight fell upon all. From the *knowing* of one's reflection in a steel blade, to the *knowing* of submerging the will, to the *knowing* of seeing itself. All of these things and more the People built upon. In time, they came to *know* the whole.

Eighth Circle (Zerthimon's Focus)

*Know* that a mind divided divides the man. The will and the hand must be as one. In *knowing* the self, one becomes strong.

*Know* that if you *know* a course of action to be true in your heart, do not betray it because the path leads to hardship. *Know* that without suffering, the Rising would have never been, and the People would never have come to *know* themselves.

*Know* that there is nothing in all the Worlds that can stand against unity. When all *know* a single purpose, when all hands are guided by one will, and all act with the same intent, the Planes themselves may be moved.

A divided mind is one that does not *know* itself. When it is divided, it cleaves the body in two. When one has a single purpose, the body is strengthened. In *knowing* the self, grow strong.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

Yes, the submitter took the exact words from Torment.

Zerthimon definitely is dead. He died in the Battle of Two Skies fighting the githyanki. Who knows if he'll be back?

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

I was under the impression that Zerthimon was still 'alive' in the loosest sense of the word. Some kind of cosmic screw up in translation from Zerai to Common and back again. There are many many instances of death and disappearance/transcendance being mixed up even in the real world.

But what do I know? Yesterday I was chasing celestial dire monkeys through hades wearing nothing but an icicle for a loin cloth...I think I need to up my dose :|

Love
Barkin x

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

Well, if Zerthimon is out there somewhere, I'd really like to find where you read it, because it means that my intro page on the githzerai is wrong.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

I too have read that he is dead. But im just saying, maybe it was a screw up and in their philosophical might they mistranslated something. 'Falling' in battle and falling in some other more mental sense is a totally different thing. Just like dying doesnt have to mean ceasing to live. It could be that he merely disappeared. Hell, we dont even know where our own Factols are. How in the nine are we supposed to know where the forefather of the Zerai race has gone? Or maybe he is dead. It has been known for me to babble insanely and not actually have a point.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

Guys, near the end of PS:T the Practical Incarnation of the Nameless One says that he made up the unbroken circle. It wasn't an original Gith text, it was just something he made to make Dak'kon join him. We don't even know if anything that's written there is "true".
Was there any reference to the Unbroken Circle in the PS campaign setting, or did it only appear in the computer game?

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

No, the Circle is not in actual Planescape.
Yes, the Nameless One made it and gave it to Dak'kon because he needed the gith's help.

But it doesn't matter because it's an awesome piece of planar mythology. It is so great for the githzerai.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'Rhys' wrote:
Yes, the Nameless One made it and gave it to Dak'kon because he needed the gith's help.

Hang on. TNO made the specific copy of the Unbroken Circle, the puzzle-like item that he gave to Dak'kon. He didn't make up the scriptures!

By the way, I used to have 3.0 stats for the item in question... basically, making Int checks would give you bonuses on skill checks related to githzerai diplomacy and history, plus you could learn new spells or powers...

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Re: Zerthimon Dead or Alive

I can't seem to find an official source that hints at a Living Zerthimon option.

However, I think Rip wrote (at riptaplanorum) about 'zerai myths that have Z. not dead but instead on a mystical journey of origins, from which he will return when the People become enlightened enough for him to lead them into the "promised lands" (basically, anywhere non-Limbo).

And I would trust Rip Van Wormer over an official source any day of the week. Eye-wink

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all tomorrow

Aw, thanks.

What I wrote on my site was:

Quote:
Zerthimon fights his own impossible son during the First Coincidence War. Mortally wounded, he is carried into the soup on a barge rowed by three githzerai women no one has ever seen before. Apocryphal tales name one as Gith.

The official inspiration for that is from the Monstrous Compendium: Outer Planes Appendix:

Quote:
Zerthimon died in the battle [with Gith], but in his sacrifice he freed the githzerai from Gith. The githzerai believe that someday Zerthimon, in his new godly form, will return and take the them [sic] to a place on another plane.

Which was completely different from what I wrote, of course, but that happens sometimes. Anyway, that's the official source for the "living Zerthimon option."

I think it was James Alan Gardner who first suggested the possibility that the Nameless One was Zerthimon, and the great planes-shattering crime he was fleeing from was the endless civil war he started with the Pronouncement of Two Skies; at least from the githyanki point of view, this was a terrible betrayal that spilled blood for eons and prevented the eradication of the illithids once and for all.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'ripvanwormer' wrote:
Monstrous Compendium: Outer Planes Appendix:

Quote:
The githzerai believe that someday Zerthimon, in his new godly form, will return and take the them [sic] to a place on another plane.

Well, that's it then. The issue was whether the 'zerai believe in his return, and not whether or not he is really still alive.

Therefore, the intro text should read "...a way of life for Zerth warriors who follow the teachings of their absent master" (or something), not " long dead master". Ansd since Belief makes the Ring go round, I wouldn't be surprised to see him coming out of the soup one of these days...

BTW, do we know of any false prophets that claimed to be Zerthimon Returned? 'Zerai or otherwise? I don't really like TNO as Z.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

Flogging a Dead Horse
or, Undisputable Proof that TNO did Not come up with the Zerth Scriptures Themselves, even though He Made the Physical Unbroken Circle that he Gave to Dak'kon:

Dak'kon knew the Circles, at least some of them, before he met TNO. It was his original interpretation of the Third Circle that made him doubt that Zerthimon's will had been his own at the Pronouncement of Two Skies, and spreading that doubt he brought about the fall of Shrak'tlor.

TNO met him only after all that, which is when he gave him the physical Unbroken Circle. The words on plates were not TNO's. Some old Zerths wrote them down ages ago.

There is a remote possibility that TNO did add the final circle himself so that it would eventually restore Dak'kon's beliefs, strengthening him, but even that's a stretch, as it's not supported directly anywhere in the game.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'Nemui' wrote:
TNO met him only after all that, which is when he gave him the physical Unbroken Circle. The words on plates were not TNO's. Some old Zerths wrote them down ages ago.

Unless the Nameless One is Zerthimon, in which case he might have written them after all.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

i beleve zert'emon is dead.
'course, thet never say he can't come back anyway. after all orcus retund from the dead in dead-gods. and exeptions are the only thing that are unexeptional in planescape/

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

True, but He was a god, they can be worsipped back to life. Zethimon was a mortal, a very influential mortal, but a mortal none the less.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

But can you worship or believ a mortal back into existance? Now that's the rub. Cool

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I'm pretty sure they would have to belive that he was out there somewhere, or that he was coming back for the Power of Belief to cause his return. And, most likely, he would not be the same Zerthimon as he was before. He would be what the current Githzeria think of Zerthimon.

Hmmm. Speaking of the power of beliefe, while the githzeria dont have a 'zerthimon returning' thing that I know of, the githyanki do. Has anyone given thought to gith actually returning, under the power of belief?

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'Clueless' wrote:
But can you worship or believ a mortal back into existance? Now that's the rub. Cool

Well, in PS:Torment The Nameless One creates a person by repeatedly introducing himself under a particular alias, until the beleif that the person was real wound up creating him. Not canon, I know, but still.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

In Planes of Chaos wasn't it written that there was a mysterious Githzerai petitioner that lived in a tower outside of Shra'kt'lor and both caused problems for Zaerith and warned the population of immenent attacks? I clearly remember reading this, but I can't find it. If I didn't make it up, it seems clear to me that this is actually Zerthimon. Can anyone back me up on this?

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

Ah, something I can shed light to!

First of all. Yes, the Practical Incarnation created the circle, but as a matter of fact, he didn´t create the words. He *knew* only the words; his stats, if you check the engine, aren´t enough to understand past the third circle, although he´s smart enough to open it all. And fortunately; although I don´t know what are his mental ability scores for in the engine. Flavor, perhaps? And if you think that´s just stats, read this.
"Perhaps there´s some truth in all these legends, I don´t know" he says if you bug him enough about the circle.
Further, he can´t be Zerthimon. He´s a big, burly man with beads in his black-brambled hair, while Zerthimon is a githzerai. The People are thin, bony and unevenly skinned.
Besides, I can´t picture Zerthimon (or any githzerai for that matter) earning the aid of Ravel with his silver tongue. Dak´kon never even says the word "beautiful" anytime in his entire script.
And, are you sure the Missile of Patience spell is in the 7th circle?

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'Lundi' wrote:
And, are you sure the Missile of Patience spell is in the 7th circle?

Yes. It represents the time needed to build the Rising. I believe it is the only Circle spell who's flavor text does not reference the Circle, instead referencing students' laments over its uselesness.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'Lundi' wrote:
Further, he can´t be Zerthimon. He´s a big, burly man with beads in his black-brambled hair, while Zerthimon is a githzerai. The People are thin, bony and unevenly skinned.

Zerthimon was not a githzerai. He was a Forerunner, which means he was a human altered by generations of illithid science. There's no reason to think he would have looked like the modern races of githzerai or githyanki, which have both evolved dramatically over the eons of breeding on separate planes. The illithid slaves may well have been extremely varied in appearance and physiology; just because a certain lean, bony body type was the one that ultimately survived after hundreds of generations doesn't mean they all looked like that from the get-go.

Some of the slaves would have been big and burly if they were bred for manual labor. Some might have had grotesquely enlarged craniums if they were bred purely for food (these might have inadvertently become powerful psions). Some might have been bred for combat, covered in tentacle grafts and bone-claws. Others might have been leaner if they were bred (for example) to swiftly deliver messages that were intended to be undetectable by rival illithid psionicists. What if they deliberately made some of their slaves lean and resistant to psionics in order to make them the ideal couriers in a society where almost everyone can read minds and intercept telepathic communications? Some of the resistance fighters, maybe even Zerthimon, might still have belonged to other castes.

Zerthimon wasn't what is now called a githzerai. He didn't necessarily look like a githzerai, or even act like a githzerai. He is simply the legendary leader of the rebellion of those Forerunners who would later become the githzerai.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'ripvanwormer' wrote:
Zerthimon was not a githzerai.

Blasphemer!

Quote:
Zerthimon wasn't what is now called a githzerai.

Now that's better.

Seriously, I do very much dislike TNO as Zerthimon. The appearance is a minor point, more important is what we know of TNO's "original" life, and I don't think it can be easily matched with what we know of Zerthimon.

He (TNO) was a really, really nasty person, obviously set for an afterlife in the Lower Planes. All he wanted to do was avoid this, so he sought immortality. How does this fit in with the "exiled prophet split the People went on mystical journey of origins will one day return to bring salvation" screed?

Also, in the game, TNO is never "reminded" of githzerai/githyanki in his previous lives, even though he recalls some events that took place a very long time ago. Wouldn't all the Dak'kon talk ring at least some bells if TNO was really Zerthimon?

But while we're on the subject of proto-gith, could someone refresh my memory as to where the Athasian gith race fits in? Are they also a mutation of the original slaves? Or was it that they somehow tied into the Spelljammer pirate-githyanki guys that I don't really know much about?

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'Nemui' wrote:
He (TNO) was a really, really nasty person, obviously set for an afterlife in the Lower Planes. All he wanted to do was avoid this, so he sought immortality. How does this fit in with the "exiled prophet split the People went on mystical journey of origins will one day return to bring salvation" screed?

The implication is that Zerthimon deliberately betrayed his people to the mind flayers, that he started the civil war with full awareness that it would cost his people their victory against their hated enemies, causing only strife between brothers and sisters for eternity, benefiting only the illithids. That was his crime, and Dak'kon suspected it - thus his crisis of faith, which when he spread it to his own followers caused the destruction of Shr'akt'lor. Nameless convinced him that this wasn't necessarily the case, restoring his willingness to live.

As for Zerthimon, officially he's dead, not exiled. He died in the battle with Gith.

Quote:
But while we're on the subject of proto-gith, could someone refresh my memory as to where the Athasian gith race fits in? Are they also a mutation of the original slaves? Or was it that they somehow tied into the Spelljammer pirate-githyanki guys that I don't really know much about?

Neither. They were normal githyanki, busy colonizing the world of the Dark Sun. The githzerai surprised them with a "psionic bomb" - essentially, the science-fantasy equivalent of a nuclear weapon - that turned them into bestial mutants.

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Unbroken Circle of Zerthimon

'ripvanwormer' wrote:
The implication is that Zerthimon deliberately betrayed his people to the mind flayers, that he started the civil war with full awareness that it would cost his people their victory against their hated enemies, causing only strife between brothers and sisters for eternity, benefiting only the illithids. That was his crime, and Dak'kon suspected it - thus his crisis of faith, which when he spread it to his own followers caused the destruction of Shr'akt'lor. Nameless convinced him that this wasn't necessarily the case, restoring his willingness to live.

Yeah, I know. Regardless of whether Zerthimon was a tool of the illithid or not, it makes very little sense to suddenly start worrying about the afterlife, and then go on to seek immortality in order to avoid it, totally ignoring the fates of all three races involved.

BTW, I didn't really understand TNO's argument against the idea of Z. being used by the illithid. It seemed to convince Dak'kon, but I wasn't all that impressed.

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Neither. They were normal githyanki, busy colonizing the world of the Dark Sun. The githzerai surprised them with a "psionic bomb" - essentially, the science-fantasy equivalent of a nuclear weapon - that turned them into bestial mutants.

Interesting, thanks. And when did this happen, approximately? I assume after the Green/Blue/whatever Ages, in the post-catastrophe Athas?

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'Nemui' wrote:
Yeah, I know. Regardless of whether Zerthimon was a tool of the illithid or not, it makes very little sense to suddenly start worrying about the afterlife, and then go on to seek immortality in order to avoid it, totally ignoring the fates of all three races involved.

It's probable that he had very little idea of what awaited him in the afterlife until the followers of Gith began venturing into the planes in pursuit of planar illithid colonies - this might well have been a moment of epiphany for him as he discovered what the Lower Planes were really like, and realized that he might well end up there.

He may not have intended to forget about his people but, as you know, amnesia was part of the package.

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It seemed to convince Dak'kon,

That was the important part, I think. Like his predecessor, Nameless gave Dak'kon something to have faith in. Whether he himself believed what he said is uncertain.

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Interesting, thanks. And when did this happen, approximately? I assume after the Green/Blue/whatever Ages, in the post-catastrophe Athas?

I assume so. I can't find a reference to it on the DStimeline.rtf download (but the psurlons entered Athas in the 189th King's Age, and the psurlon homeworld was destroyed a millennium before). I dropped the question over on the Dark Sun boards.

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'ripvanwormer' wrote:
He may not have intended to forget about his people but, as you know, amnesia was part of the package.

But he regains bits and pieces of the memory in some incarnations, so I imagine Zerthimon would eventualy regain an interest in the whole gith-illithid situation. A greater interest than just a passing glance at the supposedly last karach blade on a dying Dak'kon, I mean.

Quote:
Like his predecessor, Nameless gave Dak'kon something to have faith in. Whether he himself believed what he said is uncertain.

So the gullible zerth fell for the same lies twice, just because they were worded differently? Still, I just don't get what's so damn convincing about the 8th Circle, or how it's supposed to imply that Zerthimon wasn't still an illithid thrall at the Two Skies event.

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I assume so. I can't find a reference to it on the DStimeline.rtf download (but the psurlons entered Athas in the 189th King's Age, and the psurlon homeworld was destroyed a millennium before).

I ask because I was under the immpression that post-cataclysm Athas was cut off from the Outer Planes, including the Astral. What DS book is the 'zerai psi bomb info from?

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'Nemui' wrote:
I ask because I was under the immpression that post-cataclysm Athas was cut off from the Outer Planes, including the Astral. What DS book is the 'zerai psi bomb info from?

Athas is cut off from the Astral by the Gray, but the Gray can be penetrated with enough persistence (see A Guide to the Ethereal Plane for the chart).

The story is from Black Spine.

Update: The Dark Sun people think it may have happened in the Blue or Green Ages, and the psionic bomb is actually the reason so many Athasians have wild talents. That would be something like 14,000 years ago, keeping in mind that an Athasian year is slightly longer than a year in any other official campaign setting.

It was "millennia ago," so well before the reign of the Lich-Queen.

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TNO was once a human(?) who commited a crime so great that even a lifetime of good deeds would not redeem him from eternal damnation in the Blood War, and now the planes a slowly dying due to that same crime. He sought a way to escape his fate, by becoming immortal and doing good deeds over many lifetimes rather than one.

His friend (Morte) told him that the Nighthag Ravel Puzzlewell would be able to help him, and this friend was sent to the Pillar of Skulls in Baator soon after death. TNO went to Ravel and she fell in love with him, but the ritual was a semi-failure, as he reincarnated rather than resurrected when he died. Ravel was distraught (the man she loved was gone forever) and went insane, and later attempted to release the Lady of Pain from her Sigil prison, getting mazed before the plan could be completed.

And then other stuff happened, yadda yadda. But in the end, he never was able to escape his fate (gee, I wonder why), but instead accepted it.

The point is, Zerthimon didn't know Morte (alive or dead), and the Pronouncement of Two Skies could not have caused the planes to slowly die. It's entirely possible he was influenced by TNO, or even one of his later incarnations (the whole pronoucement thing would definitely hinder TNO's plans to escape damnation).

420
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PS:T SPOILERS!

I played through PS:T again over the past couple months with extremely high intelligence, wisdom and charisma (all 25 by the end). When talking to your three previous incarnations you find out that the "evil" one wrote the Unbroken Circle to convince Dak'kon to be his slave. It's all lies!

-420

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'Zenosaga' wrote:
His friend (Morte) told him that the Nighthag Ravel Puzzlewell would be able to help him, and this friend was sent to the Pillar of Skulls in Baator soon after death. TNO went to Ravel and she fell in love with him, but the ritual was a semi-failure, as he reincarnated rather than resurrected when he died. Ravel was distraught (the man she loved was gone forever) and went insane, and later attempted to release the Lady of Pain from her Sigil prison, getting mazed before the plan could be completed.

Actually, there's no particular reason to believe that the Nameless One knew Morte before he pried him from the Pillar, but he was already immortal when he did. Morte offered him the knowledge to release him from his immortality, which he subsequently lost when his connection to the Pillar was severed.

'Zenosaga' wrote:
The point is, Zerthimon didn't know Morte (alive or dead), and the Pronouncement of Two Skies could not have caused the planes to slowly die.

Why would the Pronouncement of the Two Skies cause the planes to die? The Pronouncement was harmfull in that it divided crippled the gith-resistance. Without it, the Illithid would have been eradicated (or at least greatly reduced in numbers and power), but it's not like the Pronounciation somehow directly causes the death of the Planes. Unless the Illithid are somehow related to a future death of the planes, of course (which isn't all that far fetched with the whole Far Realm-connection).

'420' wrote:
I played through PS:T again over the past couple months with extremely high intelligence, wisdom and charisma (all 25 by the end). When talking to your three previous incarnations you find out that the "evil" one wrote the Unbroken Circle to convince Dak'kon to be his slave. It's all lies!

Like said before, the Circle was made by the Practical Incarnation: Dak'kon's faith was shattered, rendering his karach blade useless (and, hell, it nearly killed the guy). The potential of the karach blade was so immense (I believe there's some dark somewhere about it being powerful enough to unmake the planes, so that'd be pretty powerful). So, Practical Guy needed something to mend the ol' zerth. The Scripture could very well have been a collection of actual texts, even if the Circle itself was made by the Practical Incarnation.

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'Elethíus' wrote:
Actually, there's no particular reason to believe that the Nameless One knew Morte before he pried him from the Pillar, but he was already immortal when he did. Morte offered him the knowledge to release him from his immortality, which he subsequently lost when his connection to the Pillar was severed.
SPOILER WARNING AGAIN!

In my most recent game Morte actually confessed that, though he doesn't remember specific details of his life he does remember that, when he was alive (before becoming a floating skull) he knew the Nameless One and did something to him (betrayed him somehow). Whatever it was he never forgave himself for and remembered this regret even in undeath. Personally I think he was the one that introduced or otherwise lead the mortal TNO to Ravel.

'Elethíus' wrote:
'420' wrote:
I played through PS:T again over the past couple months with extremely high intelligence, wisdom and charisma (all 25 by the end). When talking to your three previous incarnations you find out that the "evil" one wrote the Unbroken Circle to convince Dak'kon to be his slave. It's all lies!

Like said before, the Circle was made by the Practical Incarnation: Dak'kon's faith was shattered, rendering his karach blade useless (and, hell, it nearly killed the guy). The potential of the karach blade was so immense (I believe there's some dark somewhere about it being powerful enough to unmake the planes, so that'd be pretty powerful). So, Practical Guy needed something to mend the ol' zerth. The Scripture could very well have been a collection of actual texts, even if the Circle itself was made by the Practical Incarnation.


It is true that the practical/evil incarnation said that he couldn't say whether the information in the Unbroken Circle was fact or not. That could imply that he got the text from elsewhere and can't confirm its authenticity. But I think he was just saying that to be a bastard.

-420

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'420' wrote:
SPOILER WARNING AGAIN!

In my most recent game Morte actually confessed that, though he doesn't remember specific details of his life he does remember that, when he was alive (before becoming a floating skull) he knew the Nameless One and did something to him (betrayed him somehow). Whatever it was he never forgave himself for and remembered this regret even in undeath. Personally I think he was the one that introduced or otherwise lead the mortal TNO to Ravel.

Now that you mention it...

My bad, of course. It's been a while since I mentioned the game.

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Zenosaga, I've played through Torment three times (with exceedingly high mental scores three of the times); but I never saw it said any where that the Nameless One's deeds are leading to the gradual death of the planes. Likewise, it was never indicated that the living Morte knew the Nameless One prior to the Nameless One becoming immortal (though it is distinctly possible).

I agree in that I am certain that the Nameless One was not Zerthimon.

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According to the creator(s) of Planescape:Torment, TNO is not Zerthimon.

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Chris Avellone (source: Interplay forum) The Nameless One is not Zerthimon, and the Nameless One's "true name" is never revealed in the game - even I don't know who he truly is. Laughing out loud

Hope this helps,

Chris


http://crap.planescape-torment.org/threads/chris_dave_name.htm

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One of the Githzerai characters in the game (a woman, I forget her name) mentions that Dak'kon betrayed Shra'kt'lor (sp?), and angrily asks why he continues to wear the Unbroken Circle around his neck, when he obviously is not a very competent zerth. This means that the Circle is known to other Githzerai as a religious text. Incidentally, TNO can warn her about a Githyanki attack after overhearing their plans.

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'Fidrikon' wrote:
True, but He was a god, they can be worsipped back to life. Zethimon was a mortal, a very influential mortal, but a mortal none the less.

I think a good parallel would be to consider King Arthur. He is titled Britain's "Once and Future King" who died and had his body sent to Avalon, isle of the dead...People have argued as to whether he really died or lived and as to the means of his return (CS Lewis' That Hideous Strength takes a play on this with Merlin, who is also said to have a similar "slumber" until a day of re-awakening...)

Just throwing that out there, though it's def. not PS material.

77 Bonus for Power of Belief to do
I rolled 1d20+77, the result is 90.
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Actually, I tend to think that the Illithids weren't needed for the Githzerai to go against the Githyanki/zerai because the later was going to destroy themselves in the resulting war against every other species in the cosmos.

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Is this entirely reproduced from PS:T? If so, it should be stated somewhere.

Oh, and the intro text says "Zerth warriors ... follow the teachings of the long dead master", but I was under the impression that the one of the cornerstones of the Zerth 'faith' was the belief that Zerthimon will return to lead the people from Limbo to ... someplace. IIRC.

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