Another threat report...this one for one of the gravest (no pun intended) dangers the universe holds
Many point to the Outsiders as the source of one of the greatest threats in the known universe. But the Necrarchy has its origins entirely in this cosmos, despite being a complete violation of cosmic law.
Scientists and mages alike have tried to understand the nature of this cosmic abomination: is it a single being, a gestalt consciousness, a mindless predator...or something even more sinister? Most likely, the Necrarchy is all of this and more.
It is a collective of beings to whom death has lost all meaning, who exist in a state of perpetual undeath - a tainted necrotic ecosphere where thoughts creep through decayed brains and atrophied muscles twitch in perpetual twilight, where rotten teeth break down living flesh to feed its never-ending hunger.
It is not ruled by a single entity, it has no head to cut off or a heart to pierce...all beings in it exist eternally inside the Darkmind, the collective consciousness that rests in every single necrotic cell.
All that can be done is to contain it and the spacefaring races of the universe have cordoned off the Deadworlds where the Necrarchy holds sway, destroying any ship that ventures too close for fear of contaminating the rest of the universe.
The origin of the Necrarchy goes back to one of the first races to ever develop sentience: the secretive and enigmatic Myrr. The Myrr as a people valued both science and magic highly, often combining the two to achieve marvels that have not been seen since. They also greatly valued their individuality up to the point of eventually living in what one might call an "enlightened anarchy" where no one would intrude upon the wishes of another. Given their mastery of both science and magic, it was only a matter of time before one among them might make contact with DIVINITY Herself, ascending the dimensional ladder until reaching The Supreme Throne.
That being was Athan, one of the Myrr's brightest young minds. Unfortunately, he made the same discovery as almost everyone else makes when ascending towards the Supreme Being...the revelation almost always leads to insanity, the mortal mind unable to cope with the entirety of the cosmos presented before them. His brilliant mind sought refuge in fixating on one thing only...the truth about death. He learned that upon death, each soul returns to DIVINITY to become one with it, thereby losing a great deal of its individuality. The thought frightened Athan and he began to seek a way to prevent death from ever reaching him. Now, death was a rare occurrence to the highly-advanced Myrr but they were still mortal and the mere possibility of "disintegrating" as he called it (wrongly, as DIVINITY would say) terrified him.
He worked for years to find a solution, to end the tyranny of death forever. Sadly, he succeeded, not by making himself immortal but by weaving a powerful spell that effectively banished the concept of death from his surroundings by removing it from the upper Dimensions in his vicinity.
When he realized his mistake, it was already too late.
You see, in his eagerness to escape death, he forgot one thing...he stopped death but not growth.
Within a few weeks, he was a tumor-ridden wreck, unable to undo the spell, for his brain had long stopped working in any rational sense. And the growth of the being that was once Athan could not be halted. Instead, it grew and grew and grew, enveloping and destroying other beings, its cells continuing to work even after being destroyed. And the more tissue the mass gathered, the more capabilities and knowledges of its victims it assimiliated. The Myrr tried everything but in the end, were forced to admit defeat. They fled their homeworld, abandoning the undead mass to its fate.
And the creature, now without food to fuel its ravenous desire for growth, evolved. It began to split off parts of itself, sending them into space to seed other planets with its hideous mockery of life. It spawned parasites that subjugated others to the collective mind that now inhabited the monstrous mass - fortunately, the spell that protects the main mass from death only works to a certain degree, allowing these monsters to be killed by force. The rotten minds of the Myrr sorcerers and scientists it devoured helped it create ways to bridge the gap between worlds and invade...countless races fell before its onslaught before a defense could be mounted....in the end, the Necrarchy, now having grown so large it filled entire star systems, was contained in a star cluster, but every now and then, the planets align in a certain way, allowing the creature to attempt an invasion by magic or spores...
Earth has suffered two invasions by the Necrarchy. the first one was stopped by a group of valiant knights in medieval times, the second one was halted by the Guardians.
A necrotic Hierarchy
There exists no hierarchy amongst the ranks of the monsters the Necrarchy spawns but there is a vast difference in power.
The Darkmind is the "brain" of the Necrarchy, consisting of the combined intellects, knowledges and memories of all the people it has ever consumed. Its intellect is vast, its willpower infinite...fortunately, the Darkmind is consumed by the desire to grow and to feed, for it cannot starve but has grown so large that painful hunger is its constant companion. A part of the Darkmind is always busy upholding the original spell that gave it life while the rest plots or directs the numerous minions it has created.
These flesh-constructs harbor are the most independent of all Necrarchy constructs since they are meant to infiltrate other worlds and pave the way for the invasion. To that end, they create suicide or murder cults, seed places with vampire or ghoul parasites and teach Necromancy to those interested in the darker arts. The Necropolitan (see Paragons) is a Harbinger. They appear much more intelligent than the Darkmind itself and are often surprisingly sane...they are still eternally bound to the Necrarchy, however and would never ever betray them. All Harbingers are potent sorcerers, able to pretty much feed off death and create independent flesh constructs of their own. They are high enough on the chain of power to still be immortal with only total disintegration being able to slow them down (though they still reform after about 10 earth years)
The towering undead behemoths are the generals of the Necrarchy, war-marchines as well as capable commanders. Undead relays of the Darkmind, they are usually the first that come out of the flesh-gates created during the first wave of any invasion (see below). Where Harbingers look like emaciated beings of indeterminable race and gender, Nepharites appear to be giant corpses studded with all sorts of weaponry. They also constantly emit spores that fester and grow into new parasites.
Basically, these are unliving battering rams, composed of dozens of corpses that have half-melted together. Flesh-gates can spontaneously transform into Gholems when attacked. These creatures know no independance and have no mind of their own, only existing to kill and incorporate new corpses into their own bodies, eventually growing into enormous size.
The parasite is a small lump of flesh that is excreted by Nepharites or the main mass of the Necrarchy whenever a direct assault is not viiable without softening up the defenders from within. Once it comes into contact with a living being, it tries to get into the host via open wounds or body openings. It then seeks out the main circulatory organ and proceeds to surround the heart, at the same time draining the body of all minerals and other vital components while unleashing undead antibodies into the bloodstream which quickly overwhelm all immune resistances and rebuild the body with necrotic flesh, at the same time infecting the brain, subjecting the target to the will of the hive mind. A vampire needs blood to fuel its existance but can no longer produce it themselves so they need to drain it from others. Vampires gain great physical strength, stamina and regenerative capabilities as well as the ability to spawn more vampires by injecting an egg from the parasite into a victim - this happens via the blood-draining bite if the vampire wishes.
Interestingly, human skin cells react strangely to the transformation, becoming highly susceptive to sunlight....
Vampires are very independant and retain most of their living memories...and it is possible for a vampire to regain his free will, as evidenced by Dracula.
The stake through the heart only works with very young (1 year or so) vampires as afterwards, the body is so riddled with necrotic tissue it can be reanimated in mere days. A vampire older than a year needs to be beheaded.
Actually, ghoul parasites are undeveloped vampire parasites that have found a host before maturing themselves. They constantly seek to continue their transformation but cannot do so, the unresolved needs driving the victim completely insane after mere days. They constantly seek meat to devour to finish their gestation. They are not that useful to the Necrarchy but make decent shock troops.
The shuffling hordes do not eat brains. They merely seek to kill as many as possible before venturing towards a ley nexus and meld together to form a flesh-gate. Zombies rise from their graves or wherever they fell as a result of the red rain that falls in the first stages of a Necrarchy invasion. It contains a small spore that nestles into the brain and worms its way through the nervous system, often replacing it where it is damaged. Destroying the brain destroys the spore and thus, the zombie.
A Necrarchy invasion happens in five stages, though stages can be repeated if necessary and the amount of progress made in conquering entire worlds means that several stages can happen parallel to each other in different continents, for example.
1.The Red Rain
Either due to machinations by the Harbinger or because of a natural mystical alignment of planetary bodies, a weak link is opened towards the Deadworlds. The Darkmind reacts instinctively by unleashing spores into the athmosphere of the target world via the link. The spores disperse in the clouds and fall down with the next rain, turning the waters red. As a result, the dead begin to rise.
The zombies start to slay as many living beings as they can, preferably while the red rain still falls. If met with heavy resistance, they begin to withdraw to the nearest ley nexus to form a flesh-gate. If not met with any resistance, they do this when zombies have started to outnumber the living 5:1
3. Opening the Gateway
Driven by instinct, the zombies converge on the nearest ley line nexus and their bodies meld together to form a huge gateway. If a Harbinger is present, the creature will cast the portal spell themselves, otherwise the zombies begin to form a small hivemind necessary to work the spell implanted into the spores. This takes much longer, however. Once the Gateway is open, the Nepharites come out and begin animating more and more undead, fashioning them into constructs and Gholems. They emit a call that draws all vampires and ghouls to them.
What it says. The Necrarchy floods the enemy with undead hordes, learning about its enemies as it assimilates their bodies and minds. The war goes on until 90% of a planet's total population are dead (counting non-sapient animals)
5. The end of life
Once the balance between life and death is ruined by the undead outnumbering the living utterly and completely, every single undead joins in a communal ritual that rips apart the space between the Deadworlds and the target world, allowing the Necrarchy to expand its bloated bulk onto the planet, turning it into a new Deadworld where everything IS the Necrarchy.
Last edited by Neo-Paladin
on Tue Aug 23, 2011 12:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.