Tag Archives: Sanctuary of the Swordmaiden



[The final dictated diary entry of an unfortunate explorer has a singular focus, and is burned onto the broken, blood-encrusted screen.]

MY LEGS! Oh gods it hurts it hurts it HUUURTS why did I ever try that jump? Why did I think it was a good idea to – oh gods is that bone poking through the skin? And is that my – sitting on top of my – oh gods, it is. GYAAARGH! The pain the pain the PAIN why the stars did I come to this gods-forsaken planet in the first place?

Okay just – just calm down. Medishot… numbing pain enough… to talk. Legs… shattered. My attempt to reach the heart of the Sanctuary… doomed to fail. If you are reading this, turn back. TURN BACK before you take one lousy STINKING MISSTEP and plummet to the floor of this hellscape of a – oh stars the pain’s coming back. Too much to concentrate. Must reach… medishots. Belt. Where’s my belt. Oh, it’s on my – with the – oh no. Hey! Get away from that!
I need it! Well… I will need it. If I can – why are you looking at me like that? Oh gods. Your eyes. Why are they like that? Please, I need help. Don’t – please, no – not my legs. Not my legs! What are you – don’t eat that! Gods – nerves must be – totally severed – or pain would be oh NO GODS NO THOSE ONES AREN’T SEVERED gyagharghGODS ALMIGHTY the chewing the chewing oh gods OH GODS HELP ME the horrible chewing and crunching and

[The remainder of the screen is filled with the autorecord AI’s valiant attempts to write out the agonized sounds.]

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

Corruption in Hive-Mind Insects: A Hypothesis



Property of Dr. Harkov Zelvic
May not be reproduced without the express consent of Dr. Harkov Zelvic
“Dr. Harkov Zelvic” is a trademark of Dr. Harkov Illic Markev Dakor Kizkov Zelvic
All Rights Reserved

The nanobiotic nature of the highly adaptable infection known colloquially as “corruption” appears to allow it to spread at an even more alarming rate in hive-mind species of insectoids.
The rapid infectiousness of this bio-phage displays similar behavior to the techno-phage which affects mechanical beings such as constructs, bots, even Mechari. And just as the techno-phage spreads incredibly quickly by hijacking communications signals between mechanicals, it appears a mild form of latent telepathy in the hive-mind insectoid species of Nexus allows the bio-phage to do the same.


Although “ordinary” Strain-corrupted creatures are generally mindless and aggressive, with little in the way of coordinated strategies, both hive-mind insectoids and mechanicals continue to display unexpected cunning and intelligence – fighting together, planning complex attacks, and even protecting their area of influence in the same way an army would protect its flanks.


At this time, there is no known or accepted treatment for the so-called “Strain” corruption on the planet Nexus, unless one considers extermination a form of treatment. The Strain, which displays clear signs of hive sentience, conclusively spreads more quickly among beings with hive-mind intelligence, be it biological or mechanical. If we can document the principles behind corruption’s heightened infection rates within such populations,
interrupting these signals could profoundly slow the rapid onslaught of the disease and might even be used to reverse the effects. Even if infected creatures cannot be saved, this resistance must be studied if the Strain is ever to be defeated once and for all.


Complete and total incineration still appears to be the best way to deal with the remains of experimental subjects or encroaching corrupted insectoid hives.

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

Darkspear Diary


The Goddess speaks through the abundant life here, as she speaks to us everywhere on this world. And here, in this sacred place, the Sanctuary itself calls to me. It is a song that carries on the warm, gentle winds of summer, a song that hums beneath the babbling of the running stream, a song I hear in the cry of every bird, every predator, every tree, every living thing I can see and many that I, Rayna Darkspear, cannot.

The Sanctuary’s song has long spoken to me, as it speaks to all of us. But of late, I hear things the others do not. I fear my sisters do not let themselves hear these notes of the song, either because they are not as attuned to its sound as I am – or perhaps because they choose not to believe these dark sounds could be part of the great web of life with which the Goddess blesses us.

I have thought long and hard about this.
I have listened to the song of the Sanctuary for days on end, sharpening my focus until the gentle, healing notes are a dim sound. Now, all I hear is a deep undercurrent of anger and despair. What is it that cries out to me so? And why can the others not hear? Or worse – why do they lie about what they DO hear?

There can be only one reason. They do hear it. They know this forest suffers, they know the Sanctuary hides its pain within gentle sounds and healing power.
But I know it is there. And I will do something about it even if they will not.

There can be no healing with suffering. I will burn away this darkness and cleanse the Sanctuary. I will restore the song of the Goddess, even though it will cause pain before all is said and done.

If my sisters will not help me, they are lost. And they will burn with the rest.

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

I’m Being Watched


Eyes. Eyes everywhere. Eyes on the ground. On the trees. Eyes growing from the walls and cliffs and the caverns and the doomed, corrupted beasts of the wild.

But when I turn to strike out their hideous light? To plunge my blade deep into their damnable gaze? They are gone! Sunken back into the earth, or closed to the bright light of my holy sword. The Goddess keeps me safe, the Goddess keeps me strong.

And yet. My pumera was unsteady and weak.
For days now, my constant companion, a cub who had known me my entire life, had eaten little, growing thin and wiry. Her fur had begun to fall out in patches, while cankers and boils appeared where the hair was gone. I feared for her. I prayed to the Goddess to help her.

The Goddess did nothing for my pumera. She did not keep my companion safe, did not keep her strong. And as I watched the creature that trusted me suffer more and more, suffer to the point where she lashed out, even at me, I saw it.

The boils and cankers were not boils and cankers at all. And as they blinked open, their terrible yellow orbs knew my very soul, and I did not hear the Goddess again.

I drove my blade through the largest of the eyes, transfixing the howling beast. She did not die right away. Over and over I had to strike, until the eyes were a ruined mess of gore and rot. But my friend suffers no more.

Yet still the eyes are all around me.
I cannot put them all out, not if I had all the time in the world. Do I even want to? My pumera suffered and died, but what if it was being reborn into something new?

What if I, too, will be reborn? What if these wounds on my arms and legs are… yes. Yes.

I am being watched. But I do not fear the eyes. They watch over me now, as the Goddess once did. The Goddess who betrayed me, and betrayed my pumera. She made us weak. The Strain will make us strong. Stronger. Better. Deadlier. Victorious.

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

Hunting the Ravager


I have tracked the beast to its lair, at great personal cost. My sisters believe me to be obsessed, and I cannot say they are wrong. I am obsessed, but with good reason. This monstrous creature, this Ravager, is unrelenting. And so must I be to hunt it down and end its depredations once and for all.

I did not start this hunt alone. Two of my sisters were at my side, as were our stalking beasts. Our pets were bold, but not stupid.
They soon began to resist us, sensing what we could not: this Ravager was no ordinary monster. Perhaps we should have heeded their unspoken demands, and turned back. If we had, my sisters and our pets would still be with me. But the infection set in soon after they started acting up, and indeed even then it was probably too late. If I hadn’t severed my own arm above the elbow, I would have been lost too.

I gave them a merciful death.
But they deserved better than to die in such agony. And so I swear I will not stand down. Though I have but one sword-arm, I will use it to strike the Ravager of Moldwood down, and soon.

It must be soon. For even now, I hear the beast calling to me through the remnants of infection in my blood. And its voice grows clearer.

Yes, today I kill two monsters. First, the Ravager. And then I will fall on my own blade. Goddess save me, it is the only way. I am sorry, Blademother. I am sorry.

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

Song of the Lifeweavers


[This free verse work appears to be the work of a long-dead Lifeweaver Pell mystic, written long before they became corrupted.]

Living world of sun of sky
Sing your songs of joy
Thriving life, burning strong
In the deep heart of this sacred sanctuary.

Loom of life and mysteries
Weave the songs of all
Into the sacred fabric
The divine web of existence.
Masters of sun and sky
Grant your Lifeweavers strength

Grant your Lifeweavers courage
Grant your Lifeweavers this song
This song of all things
For it is this song we weave into all things alive.

Quick Facts

Type: Journal

Sanctuary of the Swordmaiden Datacubes, Journals and Tales Locations