4 Relics of the Ealamassian Empire
The Ealamassian Empire stretched over 1100 leagues by seven hundred leagues and persisted for nine centuries before succumbing to the relentless barbarism and hostility of its neighbors. They reached almost mythical heights of magical advancement, mathematics, astronomy, agriculture, metallurgy, and thaumaturgy before their fall.
Centuries later, the remnants of the Ealamassi remain detested, feared, avoided, and demonized.
Most folk call them Orc.
1. The Bust of Daqqartum
The Bust of Daqqartum is a three-stone bronze sculpture depicting Daqqartum III, one of the most venerated queens of Ealamass. The queen is depicted wearing her hair in a forward braid. This style has a woman pull her hair forward and braid it so that it covers her neck and chest like a man's beard normally would. The bust has no magical properties, but is an excellent study of an attractive female orc of good health and breeding, demonstrating the traditional personal grooming habits and hair care of the Ealamassi orcs.
Following the collapse of the Ealamassian Empire, the vast and great accomplishments of the Ealamassi were lost, including the previously unheard-of sexual equality among them. Part of this came from the magical, educational, and thaumaturgical arts, which were not reliant on upper body strength or biological aggression. The other part came from Ealamass being a nominal matriarchy. When the empire collapsed, the great works and libraries were destroyed or stolen, and survival of the species fell to males being forced into ultra-violence, and women being remonstrated to breeding chattel.
2. The Gazualum Plate
The Gazualum Plate is a ceremonial dish that was of a type commonly used by the Ealamassi Empire. Recovered from the ruins of the city Gazualum, the plate is three feet across, eight inches deep, and is ceramic in nature with a blazing red and gold glaze. The center of the plate displays a three-headed orc male with six arms, giant tusks, and two penises holding aloft a variety of ritual and ceremonial tools and implements. The figure is incorrectly called Gazualum and is commonly accorded to be an Ealamassian fire deity. In the hands of a skilled cleric or thuamaturge, the plate can be used to create an enormous ward against evil spirits, disease, and cold. The figure is correctly Yamquzzuhalamma, the Ealamassi deity of the Home and Hearth, also known to be associated with groundskeeping, repairs, warding away of thieves and (teenagers) and the satisfaction of good (whiskey), pleasant women, and obedient children.
The Ealamassi were often misunderstood as their religion didn't offer sacrifice to please gods, but rather involved rituals and offerings that repelled unwanted and malign entities. The empire never venerated saints, martyrs, shining saviors, or gods of forgiveness. Rather, they considered the realm of the divine to be more akin to pests or great beasts, either to ward away, or to yoke to their will.
3. The Sharrum-iter Disc
The Sharrum-iter disc is a rough-fired clay disc/torus two hand spans wide and roughly as thick as a normal wrist. The disc is badly cracked, but attempts to detect magic indicate that it was once a wondrous item, and it radiates evil. It is commonly believed that relics like the Gazualum Plate and Sharrum-iter Disc indicate that the Ealamassi were demoniac, diabolical, or infernal.
The Sharrum-iter Disc is a 'Disque espirit', a thaumaturgical device that acted as a negative energy sink. Everything from ghosts and curses to bad feelings and anxiety was drawn to its carved and blessed orifice. This would forcefully discharge these negative energies away from the energy level where the Ealamassi dwelt. Recharging or blessing the disc was as easy as a benediction and adding fresh oils to stone, dousing it with a shot of fiery liquor, or bathing it in pretty much any bodily fluid if properly offered and venerated.
4. The Amphora of Sisuthros
The Amphora of Sisuthros is a three-foot-tall ceramic vase that is commonly described as being pot-bellied in appearance, with overly large handles and covered in colorful but gory pictograms. The inside has a permanent glaze of dried blood that has permeated the vitreous interior. The entire object radiates magic and cursed energy.
The amphora is a Cursing Jar, a magical item that is used to bestow curses on those that have wronged a person. The power of the jar is severe, but so is the cost of using it. The more flesh the curse bearer is willing to sacrifice, the more likely the curse is to work. Most commonly the wroth would sever a finger to power the arrow of their malice. Others, more gravely wronged, would offer a hand, an arm, or more. The part that has been completely lost is that in using an Ealamassi cursing jar, the wronged would name their persecutor, state the wrong done, and then invoke the Ealamassi god of justice and fairness to investigate and weigh their charge and their sacrifice. Non-Ealamassi who have since emulated the jar have done so without this functionality, and created swords without handles, bereft of justice, only drawing blood.
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? Responses (1)
This is a great rework of the orcs, making them polar opposites of Tolkien orcs.