A companion/guide to the interactive story "Atlas' Weight"
So, this is a companion and guide that Dark Dragon, Zex, and myself have decided to post sharing the backstory we've built for the world in our original, weight gain fantasy-based interactive: Atlas' Weight. Also included is a "Who's Who" of significant characters, and various esoterica and bits of worldbuilding (how the colors of magic work, etc.) we've come up with.
Before we proceed, please know that we drew inspiration from Greek mythology for parts of this...in that we twisted its arm behind its back, beat it up until it said "Uncle!" and stole its lunch money. Honestly, we mostly borrowed names and concepts, and sometimes used Roman when we liked it better. Nothing contained herein is even remotely mythologically accurate, so if that's a requirement, you might want to look elsewhere.
This is a living document, and will be updated as time goes by and as I have time to add to it. At the time of original posting, it is still incomplete.
Using this lore is not a requirement for writing in the story, but if you want to use any of it for your additions, feel free! Sometimes, characters by other authors will be added to the lore if they're deemed significant enough, filed under the appropriate headings. If someone created a character we take in another direction, credit to their original creator will be included here, in the lore. Below is a list of headings; you should be able to skip to the appropriate sections by using the search function and copying the appropriate heading. Enjoy!
Link to Atlas' Weight: https://www.writing.com/main/interactive-story/item_id/2283571-Atlas-Weight
Table of Contents
"Section 1: The History of the World" - This section details the mythical backstory of Celastiar, and answers questions such as why Atlas is so revered in Celastiar
"Section 2: Terminology of Power" - An explanation of various terms as applied to the Powerful Beings of the story.
Section 1: The History of the World
In the beginning was Chaos, and from Chaos came Ouranos, Gaia, and Tartarus: The Sky, the Earth, and The Void. As time passed, Ouranos and Gaia fell in love, wed, and birthed children: The Titans, who then filled the world with wonder and life.
After a time, jealousy and envy darkened Gaia's heart, and she began to resent her children, for she believed that they had stolen her place in her husband's heart, for Ouranos loved nothing so fiercely as he did his children.
Tempted by the corrupting whispers of Tartarus, she devised a plan to mate with The Void in order to birth a race of Giants to destroy the Titans, so that she could have Ouranos and his love all to herself.
But The Sky sees all, and Ouranos learned of the evil his wife planned to unleash, and struck first in defense of their children and the world they had created.
The battle ended in mutual annihilation, insomuch as beings such as the Three can be annihilated: Ouranos defeated his wife, but was injured at the last and rendered brain dead, while Gaia's body was shattered.
As Ouranos fell, the tallest and strongest of his sons, Atlas, reached up and caught The Sky before it could crash to The Earth. Knowing their brother could not long withstand his burden, the Titans gave up their power to Atlas, passing forever into the Realm Beyond Chaos so that the people and creatures they created would be preserved.
Meanwhile Gaia, weakened and shattering, sought the aid of The Void in a desperate attempt to save herself. Tartarus promised to heal The Earth if she would first give him the children she had promised. And so Gaia mated with Tartarus and birthed the Giants, who came forth twisted and corrupted by the Power of the Void, which is antithetical to all Powers of Creation.
Once the Giants came to be, Tartarus broke his promise to Gaia and allowed her to shatter. The shards of her body were flung across the vastness of infinity and became the myriad worlds of the multiverse, resting beneath the Body of Ouranos and divided from each other by the Emptiness of Tartarus. Her spirit was forced into dreamless slumber, divided amongst the countless fragments of her body. The largest of the shards, at the Center of All Things, became the world of Celastiar.
Atlas, knowing that the worlds would fall to ruin without his siblings to fulfill their duties and with the majority of his attention and power focused on holding the sky, crafted a solution. He selected twelve mortal families from twelve of the many races, and endowed them with a portion of the power bestowed on him by his siblings, setting the Twelve Great Constellations in the sky to serve as the source of their power. Thus was the Zodiac born, and through them Order was maintained throughout the cosmos.
Meanwhile the Giants, cruel and twisted creatures that they were, created as dark mirrors to the Titans, sought to fulfill their purpose and struck out at the last surviving Titan. Knowing that Atlas could not defend himself whilst holding up his burden, the firstborn descendants of the Titans, the Olympians, joined forces with the newly formed Zodiac and waged the Gigantomachy.
Eventually, the Spawn of Gaia and Tartarus were defeated. Many were slain, and others were banished from Celastiar forever; cast out to drift amongst the Worlds of Infinity forever. But with peace restored, the greed of the Olympians was given free reign: Angry that Atlas had entrusted the power of the stars to mere mortals, many of the Olympians rebelled against Atlas' decree and tried to take that power for themselves. The battle was hard fought, and many loyal Olympians perished, but eventually the Zodiac stood victorious and the rebel Olympians fled Olympus, deciding that if they could not rule in the Center of All Things then they would at least rule elsewhere.
The exact details of the Gigantomachy and the Olympian Rebellion have been lost to time. Of the few beings in Celastiar old enough to have lived through those dark times, only Atlus is easily reached, and Atlus refuses to share those memories with anyone.
"The destruction of my family is not fodder for an evening's entertainment. Seek the bards if you desire stories." - Atlus
Section 2: Terminology
Primordials, Titans, Olympians, and Demigods. what gives?
So, definitions with explanations, I think.
Primordial: One of the original three beings. Wholly divine, incapable of true death but can be incapacitated at each other's hands. The most powerful beings in all existence.
Titan: A chlid of two Primordials. Wholly divine, can be incapacitated at each other's hands, and can only die by giving up their power to another Titan and passing into the Realm Beyond Chaos, the ultimate source of all things and the Afterlife for the Divine.
Olympian: The offspring of a Titan and a mortal. Not wholly divine, but possessing the immortality of agelessness after reaching the prime of physical life. Can be killed by a being of sufficient power. The Olympians who rebelled and fled after their defeat eventually became the Greek Gods, spreading propaganda vilifying the Titans to the humans who worshipped them. Power varies on a case by case basis.
Demigod: The offspring of an Olympian and a mortal, not wholly divine and possessing the immortality of agelessness after reaching the prime of physical life. Can be killed by a being of sufficient power, and are the last link in the generational chain to be considered a divine being: Any children born to Demigods are wholly mortal, lacking any Divine Essence. That said, Demigods are not necessarily weak. Like the previous generation, the Olympians, power levels among Demigods vary on a case by case basis. For example: Atlus is a Demigod by lineage (the grandson of Atlas himself), but is stronger than any Olympian on record, though is still not as powerful as a Titan or Primordial.
Zodiac: A member of the 12 families chosen by Atlas to maintain the balance of the multiverse. Empowered by the 12 Great Constellations (The 12 Signs of the Western Zodiac), the 12 Houses oversee various aspects of reality, ranging from watching over the mortal afterlife to ensuring the Cycle of Seasons remains stable. Some of these duties require active stewardship, while others are sustained merely by the existence of the members of the House, and still others are fueled by the interactions between the 12.
Zodiac Monarch: The leader of a Zodiac House, referred to as King or Queen, preceded by the constellation they draw power from (The Virgo Queen, the Taurus King, etc.). Typically, but not always, the most magically powerful member of the House.
The Magi-Star: A series of 12 (formerly 13) Houses who act as advisers to and in support of the Zodiac, themed after the Chinese Zodiac. While not overseeing the fundamental forces of nature, they still possess vast magical powers that exceed those of ordinary Celastarians.