This is worldbuilding for my current WIP: The Expertise. Since it’s not going to appear in the main plot, I figured I’d publish it here for funsies. Please enjoy.
By C.W. Spalding
In the post-partum of Nume—the beginning of His separation, when His hand first ripped up the meat of His own belly—the cavity of His abdomen grew sloppish. It was from His first rib to His groin that there emerged an astral sea. The smell of it was raspberries and rum. The taste of it was rock and rinds. The ocean was made of the flaking of His bowel mixed with His immortal blood. The squelching of His gut caused a terrible current in the sloshing soup of His own torn muscle, a current which slurped and swirled with endless fury. The surface of it shimmered green with bile, its liquid bearing the bitterness of His celestial fury. It was the rent-meat of His abdominal cavern, the mush-rage of His endless solitude.
From within this cavern of His body arose the first wondrous children—the stars who suckled at the gaps in His stomach and who made their homes atop the land-lumps of His flesh. There they filled themselves with the light of His blood, and named themselves with names. The first-born among them were Serra-Nu and Apri-Nu, named for their brightness and their girth. They were mother brightness-of-many, Apri-Nu. They were father brightness-of-none, Serra-Nu. And their younger siblings were as many as His Teeth. The star-names were impossible to count up, we know only a portion of them. Only those who have impressed their meaning on the minds of His holy humanesque.
Among those impressors, the green child Glaoh-Nu impressed through strange means. It died long before the birth of the first of the humans or their purified children, the humanesques. And yet it lives on in our minds, an aura of all it once had been. The Glaoh-Nu shone not with pale-tinted light, for they mistakenly suckled His prickled gallbladder. As such, their body grew in bitterness, as did their light.
Because of this strange teat from which they fed, their face became the most deformed of all of Nume’s star children. Their body twisted with the bones bent out. Their snout was full of teeth and their eyes were full of tongues. Their nose was a broken eye which dribbled out an endless snot and they smelled by licking the string with the tongues of their eyes, tasting the air to see. They called themselves a star, but that is not the truth of the thing. The Glaoh-Nu was a creature apart, a thing which has not lived before or since under the vision of His Eyes. However, when all children are stars, there was no other thing by which Glaoh-Nu might be named.
The other stars fled from this Glaoh-Nu and their malformation; all other stars except Phicreb-Nu who was small and round as a drop of His tears.
Of all the children, Phicreb-Nu’s shape was like the perfect word of His lips. Her body had the aspects of glass and the beauty of rubies, she shone with a white radiance unmatched by any among her star-siblings, she moved with a more-perfect rotation than any other.
When Phicreb-Nu drew close to her older sibling, Glaoh-Nu hid themselves. But the star pressed on, licking at the snot of their nostril eye in comfort. She laid across their lap, crackling with star-sound. And with their glow brought close, Glaoh-Nu’s fire shone less green; their tongues grew moist with tears and their bones relaxed beneath the skin of their combustions.
But Alou-Nu, second daughter of Nume’s right hip, loved the small star Phicreb-Nu and desired to have her above all other stars. She grew jealous of the gravity shared between the small Phicreb-Nu and the hideous Glaoh-Nu. This must have been a trickery made by the star of green gasses, or else how could they have wooed a star so pristine to their gyration.
For Phicreb-Nu, Alou-Nu brought up the food of her own gut, but Phicreb-Nu did not desire anything beyond what she had already eaten. She turned away the gift of gut-foods. Alou-Nu brought her gifts again, but she turned away the gift of star-girth, an add to her postures, an increase to her inheritance.
At the first refusal, Alou-Nu remained indifferent. But at the second, her fury turned her light the pale white of His scalera. And so, Alou-Nu—mother of the spider wolf, leader of those with down-bound hearts—laid down a devious plan with the lesser lights, a plan to have unto herself Phicreb-Nu. A plan of murder, which was not yet born into Nume’s realm except by natural death. She built up the meaning of slaughter, the manner of destruction, the method of life-crushing. She created all this while tucked in the wraps of His intestine, down deep where His blood-sludge deafened the terrors of her invention. And once she and her lights had thus oath-binded, they waited for the season of stomach-sipping, the same way spider wolves wait on the ray-tailed deer fawn’s first wobbling steps.
So, when Nume’s stomach swelled with the consumption of His tongue, Alou-Nu sent herself and her lights over the abdominal currents toward the island intestine, home of Glaoh-Nu’s shine. Their astral tails left ripples across the bile-mixed blood as these orbs of ill will came forth with deadly purpose. By the green light of Glaoh-Nu flickering over this fleshy-island, they knew their prize was near. When the green star turned its broken eye up to sniff them with its snot, they had already come down upon its warped-boned body. The stars with their flares reached out to the Glaoh-Nu. They took it by its explosions. They crushed inward its gravity with their own, a pulverization which left the star, Glaoh-Nu as nothing more than a drip of helium ooze seeping down into the sea.
When the last of its twisted shape had broken—its tongues laid scattered among the waves, its bones lay shattered beneath the surface of the sea, its snot lay smeared over the shape of His intestine—Phicreb-Nu saw their death and let out a star-scream, a blinding flare of light which cracked the sky open with thunder.
Meanwhile, Alou-Nu stood back and crackled at her victory. She took into her orbit the lesser star, Phicreb-Nu, holding them fast among her many lights as a prisoner. She took the pure thing’s lashing as acceptance, she understood the small one’s weeping as relief. But Alou-Nu did not read her little sister’s heart well.
Phicreb-Nu cried out to her Body-Father, the Numerous Soul.
“Nume, Father of Stars, Body of my Body, Blood of my Blood,” she Phicreb-Nu cried. “My orbit is tainted. Would that I might die before receiving this lonely fate.”
And at her word, Nume’s left eye cracked open.
His hand moved up over the hole of His abdomen and he scooped out from His cavity the star bodies, casting them up into the Nothing which surrounded him. And so violent was the casting of the stars, that Phicreb-Nu’s light was extinguished, snuffed out in the final star-death. Her body became a crimson light and her radiance diminished by Nothing. She swelled, like a star-birthing. She hissed, like a star-crying. Alou-Nu’s light flickered, repulsed with the decrepitude of her small sister’s body. But Phicreb-Nu’s life had not yet extinguished. She had yet more suffering to undergo before her final death. Her own gravity compressed, in and down in the same manner of pulverization as Glaoh-Nu. Her hot skin flew outward, bursting like a bubble of wild-frog mucus. And then the final death came over her, forcing her body into harmony with Nothing that is The Final Death of Nume. Her after-body became Nothing, a gaping hole of endless swallowing, eating up Alou-Nu so she remained only a half of her girth. Alou-Nu’s many little lights were all gobbled up as well, so that she was left queen of only her own wounded glow. The stars trembled with fear, afraid for their own lights, spreading far from the dying place of Phicreb-Nu.
But, Nume did not forsake her. He reached up His Holy Finger to the dying place of Phicreb-Nu and touched her corpse. All around her bloomed the green-glow aura of Glaoh-Nu; His Finger entwined their dying in Nothing forever more. Alou-Nu swung herself toward His touch, in hope to reach His Holy Palm. But the star-corpse tethered her to her place, holding her back. And Alou-Nu remained a half-star, a broken gleam.
In these times, the star Alou-Nu which marks the southern sky, her half-light winking balefully at any traveller who dares to follow her. But from her stretches a tail to Phicreb-Nu which is surrounded forever by the green-light haze of her first-gravity, Glaoh-Nu.
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