Threshold Pits

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The Pits are an interesting assortment of rooms and mazes, waterfalls and staircases. A dueling arena, teaching halls, meeting halls, and spiral staircases are there among other assorted rooms. It is accessible via the Library of Dreams as well as the two hallways between the Mt. Illapse and Edgeward Barrows thresholds and between the Valley of Totality and Evernight Plateau thresholds.

Plane History

Threshold Pits is the most ruined area of the City for a reason. Architecturally, because this is the oldest part of the City, it's seen the most strife, the most Chaos through its history. For this area, of course, long predates any of the Houses, or the lands running from the Threshold ring to the Houses.

It's been ravaged and rebuilt many, many times in the history of the Dream. The Corrupted Way gets its name, in particular, from a Prime Artifact of the Dream. It's one that the members of the Light will not even speak aloud "Corrupter of Souls."

The "spike" there that you see dates actually from fairly recent times -- since The Great Loss, actually. I will call the Artifact in question the IT, which is how we refer aloud to it. The IT was hidden here in Threshold Pits, in a part of the maze that normally is inaccessible to ordinary Dreamers.

There it had laid hidden for centuries, in fact. For it had come to rest there in the final days of the Great Loss. The precise area where it was, is a secret. I don't know it. But it's location was able to be viewed only by a powerful Dreamseer, using that Focus' abilities to intuitively grasp the hidden nature of the Dreamspace.

Wraith the Undead -- a Ruler of Dreamers of Light, a Dreamseer Teacher -- was wandering the Dream one day not too long ago. This was not long before the Great Awakening, in fact. And while experimenting with his Vision art, and his Chamele and Invisibility arts, he accidentally found the place where the IT was located.

Once he had seen the place, it became clear to him immediately how he could access it. And, being intensely curious -- even for an Undead one -- he went there. And there he found the IT. He knew not what it was. For the memories of the IT had been lost in the mists of time since the Great Loss. And innocently, he took it up.

The IT immediately began to work upon Wraith. IT works by contact. And ITs effect is subtle, invidious, impossible for the Dreamer himself to recognize, ordinarily. So for some time after he put the IT into his pack, Wraith continued to wander Threshold Pits. But gradually -- slowly -- the IT worked ITs evil magic on Wraith's soul.

Probably had he not already been Undead, the effect would have overwhelmed him. As things were, though, he only slowly began to transform. And the transformation -- was ultimately terrifying.

He became grumpy at first. HIs normal sharp wit, usually applied with humor, became instead viscous and biting. He picked quarrels. He intervened in others' arguments, settling them by collapsing all in sight. Then he began seeking out targets of opportunity. Anything -- mare or Dreamer -- that moved, that breathed, he collapsed.

Word spread throughout the City. And in alarm, Valourin, Ruler of Light, rushed to Threshold Pits to confront his friend and brother, Wraith. They argued. Wraith in fact attacked Valourin, ruthlessly and without quarter. And it was only when, on the verge of collapse, Valourin unsheathed the Scepter of Light and touched Wraith with it, that Wraith became aware of what had happened to him. For a brief instant -- a millisecond lasting an eon -- Wraith understood.

And he collapsed himself in that instant. For he knew that while coherent, and while under the influence of the IT, no power in the Dream could bring him down, save himself. The spot where this exchange took place was in a room called "The Angled Way." But when Wraith collapsed himself, spoiling the far-advanced plot of the IT to wreck havoc on the Dream through Wraith's corrupted soul, the forces of Chaos ... went berserk!

A mighty tremor of Chaos surged up through the Threshold Pits. And through the gap in the floor, the mother of all Dark Mares -- literally, that beast which lays their eggs and hatches them, then suckles them to adulthood -- tried to come through. It's name isn't known.

Perhaps that's a good thing. But to the everlasting good fortune of the City, at that moment arrived several other powerful Dreamers: Kelrith. Gyarmath. Artamor. Sabra. And others. Together, they were able to do two things at once. First, they restored Wraith, and cleansed his Soul temporarily of the influence of the IT.

Secondly, they cast powerful arts of Paralyze on the mother-beast that was coming through the floor. Wraith had dropped the IT when he was collapsed, of course -- it's a Prime Artifact. And Valourin knew better than to try to pick it up. But Wraith, being Undead, and temporarily immunized, was asked to take the IT to a place far away, to get ITs influence away from the mother-beast that writhed through the floor.

He took it to the safest place he knew, the Ruler's Circle in Dreamers of Light. And as he gained distance, the Chaos driving the mother-beast began to wane in force. Until eventually, there was only enough attraction between the mother-beast's dorsal spike and the IT to cause the spike to pulsate, up and down, up and down.

The spike has remained in that condition ever since. And fortunately, the Dreamwrights present were able to stabilize the floor sufficiently to prevent the mother-beast from coming closer to the IT, following Wraith up Mt. Illapse.


History of Dueling Arena by Molly Mayhem

I asked around and asked around but no one knew of a history for the Deuling Arena , so I came up with this one. If there is one around that someone knows of I'd like to read it. I have no idea if this one even good but here it is and I just thought I would share it all with you..

Renrut Nek spent countless hours in his study,experimenting and researching, always trying to come up with ideas for new arts. With his arthritis his bones and joints would stiffen from working so hard.

He loved to blade as exercise, but the planes were too far for him to walk in his condition and by the time he got to where he wanted , he was exhausted. Morden, a Gatekeeper, who thought he was a hotshot, would always seem to know when Renrut would be showing up. Morden took advantage of Renrut's condition and always used to seem to beat him down. Poor Renrut could never get up the energy after his tiring trek.

One day as Renrut was in Sanctuary in the pits deep in his thoughts, a portal suddenly appeared in the wall before him. He looked stunned as he walked towards it. It's spiraling lights mesmerizing him and beckoning him forth. He shivered as he touched the portal and slowly entered it.Once through he blinked as he stared into the Abyss that surrounded him. The only light,that of the portal spinning behind him.It was at that moment he realized that this was a sign to help him with his dilemma of having to go so far when he needed exercise. He went back to his study and designed what he figured to be the perfect dueling arena. It took six months for the completion of this room , which he named obviously,The Dueling Arena.

One day he invited Morden to his study where he challenged him to a duel. Morden just laughed and mocked him. Of course Renrut was well rested and ready for this challenge, as he lead Morden to the Arena. Morden was slightly taken aback as he entered this massive room , nonetheless he made himself a blade in preparation for what he thought to be another victory.The duel was going not as Morden had planned as Renrut took the final swing and was declared victorious. Morden felt a little foolish and bowed deeply to Renrut Nek. He apologized to Renrut for all the times he dueled unfairly. The two shook hands and went off in their own directions, each holding a new sense of respect for the other.

The Dueling Arena has been greatly used throughout time and is conveniently situated off of the Sanctuary just in case of those unfortunate collapses. Renrut Nek fully enjoyed the ability of just walking basically around the corner to do what he enjoyed most, dueling. Some say they have seen Renrut Nek up on the ledges looking down among the duelers. Could this be possible? Next time you find yourself in the Arena engaging in a friendly duel or just as a spectator, look around because you never know who you might or might not see!

I hope you enjoyed it, I know it isn't much just a little bit of fun.


General Notes:

The Threshold Pits are accounted one of the oldest parts of the city, and form a sort of foundation for the city. Different stories tell different origins for the plane, but it can be reasonably concluded that the Threshold Pits were likely the first plane created. From there, it is likely that the rest of the city was constructed outwards. The Courtyard and its links to Threshold likely being later refinements to ease the entrance of both newcomers and older dreamers alike.

Though often under utilized in current times, it still holds several rooms of significance to the city. These include a Ballroom, and a Dueling Arena to name the most notable locations. Both are accessed from the Threshold Pits Sanctuary.

~Arnaya, Soulmistress and Journalist

Three Faces:

...Entry into the Threshold Pits is past two walls whereon are three faces flush. At first glance those images appear to be two male adjacent to a middle holding a baby. On inspection, and questioning so many as to their opinion, it is decided those three faces represent The Trinity Brothers. The Trinity Brothers were Medio, Bajo and Gato. These ancient Dreamers were the source for Mare Essence evaluation (enslavement, imprisonment and banishment.) Before this revolutionary approach to Essence, Dreamers just left Essence to vanish. The three paths diverged as the Brothers centered on the principle of similarity in essence between avatar and Mare. Each path accumulated a following of decisive students and adamant critics, to the point that the brothers sought refuge and privacy in quarters, now known as House Order of Sable Moon. Eventually the Brothers converged their views, and were about to present an unthinkably revolutionary Mare realization, when they were assassinated by their closest supporters. " They had to be killed to free them of evil."...

(Source: http://www.angelfire.com/ab7/dranak/Histories/Plains/history-threshpits-three_faces.htm)


Statues In "Library of Souls" Room

"Beauty is more than just looks, Bowmer, true beauty comes from within, not from one's appearance". His mother's words rang through the Dreamsmith's mind as walked the dream. So much had already been built of the City, murals were being painted and some sculptures had been added to enhance the atmosphere. None ever said that Bowmer himself was an attractive man, but his artwork was acclaimed throughout the dream and his shard of Cloudsbreak. None understood why he chose to make his avatar appear as homely as his Cloudsbreak form, but the words his mother would say to him each night as he slept were lodged deep in his mind. Her beauty and wisdom was the inspiration for his artwork. As he walked into his shop this Dream, the dust swirled around his feet. On the workbench was a list of the sculptures he still had to finish. Lower Hall, the Library of Souls. So many statutes needed, how was he ever going to finish them in time?

He set about his work, taking the blocks of marble from deep under the Chasm of Souls. This artwork was to welcome dreamers. What better form than to make them look similar to some of those he'd seen so far? Over the weeks that followed, he crafted them beautifully, using the water than ran over the waterfall outside his home, he smoothed the finished statutes, polishing them with his flame. Only 8 more were needed when he finished his work for the day. Satisfied that he would complete his work on time, he decided to take a walk through the planes, looking for the companions he'd neglected while he was busy sculpting. "Bowmer! Come over here, something's happened." Fra'Garian waved his fellow Dreamsmith closer to the group gathered in discussion. "I've almost completed the sculptures, what's happened?" he asked as he joined them. He looked around at the group. Eight dreamers he knew. Serana and Pomius, the FateSenders. Kessi and Jezanda, the Soulmasters. Lyanie and Inglan, the Gatekeepers. Marcos and Quinlan, the Dreamseers, all Dreamsmiths, all looking at a strange, dark crystal sitting on the table before them. "A message has come to the City.. from outside in the Chaos somewhere. It seems a Dark One known as T'marak is planning to pay us a visit. We're discussing a way to stop him from causing any damage." The group of nine discussed the matter all through the night. The next day, when their unwelcome visitor was expected, they headed toward the City entrance. The Soulsphere of a younger dreamer came through the portal of Corrupted Way, screaming about the dark creature that had collapsed him.

Jezanda restored the young man and sent him on his way, each of them taking their places as they'd planned, surrounding the generator in the center of the room. The strongest of the group, Lyanie and Inglan, took their places by the portal leading into Renrut's study.. Serana and Pomius taking their places by the portal to the maze.. Kessi and Jezanda by the portal to the Jagged Steps and Marcos and Quinlan by the portal through which T'marak had to pass to get into the City. The two DreamSeers used their insight to see the evil creature approaching them, and warned the others to prepare. Bowmer stood behind the generator itself as the nine readied the arts they would need to win this battle, his mind drifting to his statues as he waited. T'marak was expecting a welcome when he passed through the portal and attacked the assembled DreamSmiths viscously. Lyanie fell to her knees, fatally wounded. Bowmer called out to him, drawing his attention away from the eight by the portals. "Foolish dreamers. Trying to take what is ours and twist it with your Order!" the Dark One's voice filtered through their minds. Bowmer stood bravely before the horrid creature as it advanced on him, trusting his companions to follow through with their plan.

As T'marak neared the generator itself, the eight evoked their arts, the power of the generator enhancing them more than they had expected. Bowmer lashed out at T'marak and a loud explosion accompanied by a brilliant flash of light filled the room! When the smoke cleared, Bowmer looked around. The room was silent. The only sound he could hear was the steady hum of the generator. Where his companions had once stood were now statues. In the center of the room, trapped by the power of the generator, was another statue. Tears filled his eyes as he realized that he had evoked his skill instead of the Art he was supposed to use. As it struck T'marak, it lashed out farther.. turning those who had stood so bravely against him into statues as well. The Dark One no longer being a threat, Bowmer walked around to each of the statues. Touching each in turn and feeling the trace of the soul that had once inhabited it. The next day, he returned with a plaque and placed it on the wall there. "Let none forget the sacrifice of these 8 fine dreamers who stood against a power of Chaos. May the statues here always stand guard over the portals to remind us to be ever vigilant and always prepared to defend our fair City."

Researched by Cherlia

(Source: http://www.angelfire.com/ab7/dranak/Histories/Plains/history-threshpits_statues.htm


Treaties on The Murals

There are 4 murals located in various areas of the Threshold Pits. They are the Hands of Cooperation (friendship), Lions of Opposition, The House mural, and the Triad Family. Each are located in multiple areas and in varying locations and distances from one another (which we'll cover later), all except the House Mural (all the House symbols together in a metallic display), which is located in the Bog pit which we will also cover shortly.

First understand that there are no "incorrect" interpretations of the murals and what they represent. I have discussed the Murals with Krynn, Solister, Elzabar, and a couple others in minor areas at less length. Each had their own view which would sometimes agree with another's and would also clash. However all are valid and shouldn't be judged better than another. I have included these views and have come up with some of my own, and have come up with my own interpretations of them as a whole as well as I believe that all the murals actually integrate with themselves to teach us an even greater lesson if we are able to understand how they relate to each other (I only realized this near the end but had a "great enlightenment" when it happened.

Let's begin-Let us start with the Triad Family mural. Such a simple portrait and yet it tells us so many things. To start off with the basics, let us start with what it actually looks like. It is a simple painting, with mostly neutral colors such as gray and white, showing three figures. One so very prominent in the middle looking toward the person viewing it, and to each side and behind are two other figures, although they are somewhat less defined. There are 4 "stars" or "lights", with the brightest starting in the middle near the bottom, and the other three extend out to the right and up, toward the future (we'll cover that shortly). There is also a prism of 3 sides forming a triangle which begins, with the top tip, between the heads of the left and middle figure and extends to bottom middle of the mural, encompassing the first, bright light. First, why does the point of the prism fall just between the two faces (left and middle)? Well there are a couple of different possibilities.

First, one must understand that history isn't set in stone. You can take the same facts that cover something in the past, put different people with different points of view into recording those facts, and come out with a totally different history than another. This could represent that. The left face could be the past... not very real and not very well defined. The middle, which would be the present, seems more Real, more coherent and more obvious and vivid. But still... left up to interpretation and just a tad faded. The third (to the right) would be the future, also not set in stone. It is faded as well, very open to interpretation and easily changed. The prism distorts much of the image, which shows how perspective on something makes a great difference on how it is perceived, and much of the time distorting the true image. Emotions, memories, personality, all these things can shape how you view your past, present, and even the shape of the future to come, just as the prism changes the shape of the Triad Family.

Why is the future not touched by the prism? Perhaps this is to show that the future has a set path (perhaps the Lyrans can control such things?) or maybe that after all, the future is the only thing not yet distorted by our perspectives and that it still has infinite possibilities. The four lights- These could represent the Focuses of the dream. The one of Insight would be in the prism, showing brightest, showing how insight (or interpretation) can directly affect perspective the most. Or perhaps the brightest light is the source of the other three. That light refracts through the prism into three parts, three weaker parts rather and shows how one can become many (strengthened) when it looks upon the future with hope (the lights extend into that direction). You will also notice that the figures do not have mouths. In keeping with this interpretation we discussed so far, it could mean that many things in this dream do not have the faculties of voice or sound, or even written word, but they still speak... that is, if you are quiet enough to listen, even without mouths. There is another, simpler, interpretation. The three represent the mind, body, and soul. They come together here in the dream, which is represented by the prism (overlying the mural). It shows how we all share something in common and that we all share in the dream (the prism)... the dream that binds us all into the family... the Triad family (of the mind , body, and soul).

Of course there are many other interpretations. Some Freespirits I've talked with look at the mural in a different way...a painting done long ago by possibly a powerful group who wanted their images etched into history forever, maybe even Dreamwrights. Others think it is just a nice family portrait:) Another mural is the Lions of opposition- It can also represent many things. One particular piece of interesting information is where they are located. For example, in most cases you will not find the Lions and the Hands close to each other. Much of the time they are located as far away from each other as possible. Everything that the Hands represent, the Lions contradict. It is depicted as a still-frame, moments before they clash together. Notice the expressions, showing a lack of any motive for a peaceful solution, possibly representing the wars behind us and those yet to come.

Also a warning that while we are humans while at peace and content, we can also become savage animals when angered. They are often hung in places where you can harm others or are expected to do combat. If you will notice, in one particular exception of being away from the Hands, the Lions are located at the exit to the Bog's Lair. There are also Hands located in the center of the Bog's Lair. The Hands signify that this is usually the first area where newly-awakened of all types (Freespirit or of Houses) have to use teamwork and a spirit of comradeship to defeat the first opposition that requires it, the Bogrom. The Lions hung at the exit may remind us that it is too easy to forget our teamwork and cooperation once it is no longer required (once we leave) and what can happen if we forget to take this newly found cooperation with us.

The Lions can truly represent almost anything... us against Mares... Freesoul vs.Illuminate... good vs. evil... but ore importantly, it represents opposition. If you will notice the two Lions are EXACTLY alike, equal in power, and equal in form. While it could be a still-frame before they clash, we never actually see them clash. They never battle for if they did they would destroy one another. And then there would be no Lions at all. They are glaring at each other rather than actually fighting, it could also represent an inner struggle. We are all the same... all dreamers. But we continue to oppose one another with petty differences that are less important than the truly important things... these differences causing opposition are indeed petty, which is why those differences are not shown on the mural.

Only the important things are shown. Since only the important things should matter, it may actually be showing the sadness of even such enlightened beings, ourselves, finding something to fight over that really shouldn't matter at all, for we are truly fighting our reflection since we are all alike. We just can't see this through our Rage (depicted on the Lion's faces) sometimes and that is why we will still fight even when it should be obvious that we are only hurting ourselves. Now for the Hand of Cooperation (friendship) as well as the House Mural-If you'll notice at the bottom of the mural there are dark figures there, perhaps representing the dark side of the dream, dark meaning something that the individual dreamer opposes, which could represent infinite number of things. They are also winged which shows how fear, a basic and primal emotion at the depths of our soul, can give these dark figures shape and form. Above these dark figures there is a horizontal line, clearly separating them from what is above, the hands. This is where the House mural which contains the House symbols comes in (in the Bog room).

The House mural is placed directly underneath the Hands mural. This could represent the spirit of trust and cooperation that the Dream was founded on. It also shows that this trust should be placed in higher regard than that of the individual Houses, since as a combined whole there is strength... in unity there is always strength. However, the House mural is also located on and under the dark figures, underneath the hands. Could this mean that the Houses were formed solely because of darkness within us, darkness that we took upon ourselves to form (which the wings represent)? Would there even be Houses if we all truly understood unity instead of dividing ourselves via the eight Houses? Maybe then, when we understood, would the Houses be placed above the Hands (but would there even be Houses to place above the hands if we truly understood unity and didn't separate ourselves in such ways?). But back to the Hands themselves. If you will look closely you will notice that the two hands grasp each other (one more weakly but we'll get to that) up to mid-arm instead of just at the hand. When you shake someone' hand you are greeting them, and that's all it is, a greeting. Greeting by meeting up to the mid-arm is a sign of brotherhood or deep friendship.

Also, Each hand could represent anything... two dreamers, two Houses... but one of them is weak, the right one, and is slightly slumped over. The other hand is stronger and is underneath and supporting the weak hand, and is also lifting the hand to the top. The top has no drastic, solid line. It is clear and plain, representing possibly the "peak of purity" of the dream, the thing we always strive for, our destination. Also, both are those of right hands, as if the "entities" would be facing one another, and not turned away. Facing each other. Facing...like the Lions. What if they are the hands of the Lions? Opposed....yet cooperating in friendship... helping. Is that not what makes us different, our differences? Our personalities? Our mind, soul, and body...hmmm maybe the Triad Family fits into this as well. We are all different and that is what makes the Dream what it is... the Houses, our beliefs, our families and what we will live and die for... yet with all our differences (lions) and different points of view and how things are and what they will be (family Triad) and those who we group with (the Houses)... all these things... we still manage to help each other and rise above it all in friendship (hands)... for each other... for the City... for the Dream. For just the reason that that is what we are and that's the way it should be (does it really matter whether there is a motive). We are dreamers and we are human... all of us, and that makes us ALL family.

(Source: http://www.angelfire.com/ab7/dranak/Histories/Plains/history-threshpits_murals.htm)

Plane Maps

Threshold Pits Map

Gallery

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