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Brickwork

Gather around the campfire, friends. Today you will hear the story of Brickwork von Vantis. Not only is every single word of this story true, it bears gravitas. Refill your mugs and get comfortable upon ye logs, this story is a kingly tapestry and the threads weave long and deep!

Long ago, in another land, was a small city-state named Altus. Its sturdy buildings were built upon floating islands above a vast sea. To the North of Altus was a vast tundra, covered in snow and devoid of life. Canyons that housed a mysterious empire were to the South. Brickwork was the head chancellor of Altus and, as such, he was responsible for leading the wavering nation to glory. The tired leader would have excepted wealth or maybe dignity instead but none of these things would be in the cards for Altus.

Altus was a black mark on Brickwork's record. The population dwindled and the culture of the Shattered Skies (a name given to the isles) was being diluted ideas and goods entering the city-state by foreign trade routes. It was truly a shame and pitiful to behold. Attempts were made to salvage his homeland but an oncoming war between the nations of the world would deny him that opportunity.

Brickwork remained in that world, lived through the wars, and eventually took shelter deep within the earth when the cataclysm came and wiped out all life and signs of civilization on the surface. Later, Brickwork would find himself on another world with an opportunity for a fresh start. This was thanks to Sheez and Fonjo trying to rip through the fabric of reality in search of a new home.

Coming to Vantis

Brickwork spent the greater portion of a year trapped beneath the surface of his home world. The huddled masses from a multitude of nations were trying their best to survive and enjoy what little luxury they could acquire. Food was short for much of that time but tempers were shorter.

For the most part, the various tribes decided to avoid violence. Cooperation was common but always tense. Occasionally one faction would build disturbing statues outside of another faction's walls but they were often removed quickly before inciting too much anger.

The former leader of Altus suffered from malnutrition and was mostly unable to perform much in the way of manual labor. Because of this, his frame was stark and angular because of exposed bone and pronounced ribs. Muscle atrophy had started to set in; he looked terrible and felt terrible.

Starvation seemed imminent for poor, pathetic Brickwork. His life of moderate success and prestige was coming to a close. But no, fate had other plans.

Energies released by Sheez's spell ripped holes in time and space. Brickwork, along with many others, slipped through the tearing aether. Because inter-dimensional transportation is a fickle beast, Brickwork was the last to arrive on the severed island of the first Vantis. The first, you ask? Yes, there would be more settlements to come. The original island was located on a peninsula's tip on the very edge of a powerful and militant naval nation. Sheez had already brought the refugees from the former world to heel and construction had begun on a fortress for the wizard lord. Due to political forces applying pressure on Vantis, the small settlement destroyed the strip of land connecting their town to the mainland and creating an island in the process. It was on this island that Brickwork was found. It was on this island that Brickwork would die.

The Harbinger of "The Harbinger"

Several days after Brickwork was found along the coast, broken and starving, the citizens of Vantis were prepared to give up on him. His body was wracked with disease; his bones were shattered and soft due to malnutrition. Sheez was busy constructing his tower and Fonjo was preoccupied with political shenanigans.

On the day of Brickwork's death, a contingent of young and silly girls appeared at the gates of Vantis. One of the girls stepped forward and demanded entry. Her hair was fiery red and her demeanor was... not at all intimidating. They were a jovial lot and their joy was infectious. On that day an alliance was formed between the two political entities and Brickwork, in his sorry state, was auctioned off for a pumpkin and two potatoes. I do not wish to diverge from our tale too much, but let it be known that the pumpkin in question would later be known as the "Genesis Pumpkin".