Monday, January 01, 1990

The Blessed

The Misbegotten were not the only beings produced by the rape. Also there are the Blessed. And what does it mean to be one of the Blessed?

Imagine that, in the back of everyone’s mind, there is a small door. And imagine that, behind this door, is a raging torrent of pure power. For most people, that door stays locked for their entire lives. However, in one of the Blessed, the lock is weakened and eventually the door bursts open and the power surges forth. Perhaps it is a moment of great stress, such as being threatened by a bully or accidentally falling from a tree. Whatever the cause, the Blessing bursts forth. The bully is pulverized. The fall is halted abruptly. The Blessed has used his Blessing for the first time.

It is never this easy again. Now that the door to this power has been opened, the Blessed must make sure that the door stays closed unless he actually wants to let the Blessing out. This is a long, tiring struggle, requiring intense mental discipline. Many fail to control the Blessing and it takes its toll. There have been tales of Blessed being overwhelmed by their Blessing and literally exploding under the stress. An entire village was destroyed in this way once. Even under less extreme circumstances, the Blessed finds bits of power leaking out, guided only by his unconscious mind. In its own way, this can be even more dangerous.

Imagine what it would be like. Every minute of every day, this torrent of power is beating at that door, and it is all that you can do to keep it shut. Sometimes, sometimes, you want to let a little out. But when you ease the door open just a crack, you must still hold it against the torrent that strives to burst through. Sometimes, the door blows wide open. Sometimes it can never be closed.

That is what the Blessing is like.

The mental toll is hard. The physical toll is worse. As the raw power of change courses through the Blessed’s body, he too is changed and twisted. Rarely is this for the better. The Blessed speak of the Marks of the Blessing. Some Blessed have grown extra limbs, sprouted extra eyes, or had their bones dissolve. Eventually the Blessed will be bear too many Marks, and the physical strain will overcome him. It is a terrifying fate.

Is it any wonder that the Blessed are outcast, forced from hearth and home to wander? Such a combination of power and horror is too much for most to understand. And we hate that which we do not understand. For their part, the Blessed rarely seek trouble. Most strive to hide their natures, wearing robes or loose clothing to hide their deformities, or they seek refuge in the few communities that tolerate their presence, such as the Web. Yet few find the peace that they so desperately desire.

Others choose a different path. They know that they have few years left to them, and so they embrace their power. Some choose to walk the path of the outcast, aiding those who will accept their help. Others choose the path of the warlord and sorcerer, gathering power to carve out petty kingdoms in the wilderness or to call down vengeance upon their foes.

Yet, for all this power, none of them can escape their fate.


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