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|Bulk of page written: Fall 1999|
THE LAUNCHING OF THE COSMIC EXPRESS SERIALS
-- Chapter-by-chapter Synopses of 'The Trigregos Gambit' --
1. The Trigregos Gambit: "Thrygragon"
For a change, Mind Tap does not begin this, the third of four books comprising the Launch Tetralogy. That's because it isn't Saturday, November 29, 1980. Isn't even AD. It's YD, as in Year of the Dome, -- 4376 Year of the Dome, to be precise. And Thrygragos Varuna (Uranus) Mithras would appear about to step into some serious deep-dreck doo-doo.
Doo-doo or not, you don't get to become a Great God by being a dodo. While Mithras is certainly no dummy he might not be a Thrygragos either. May in fact be but a third of the VAM Entity, as Thrygragos Sedon's first born could well be collectively known.
That's definitely one of the things about Master Devas, the third generation of devazurkind. They were all born simultaneously, in litters of three. Though they only have one father, albeit even if which one (Mithras or the Moloch Himself) may prove debatable, and one mother, none of them can be sure which one of the three Great Goddesses (Sapiendev, Demeter, or Devaura, -- respectively, Mind, Body, & Soul) was their mother.
Not that it matters overly much any more. The Trigregos Sisters, their three nowadays fantastical mothers, are long lost, perhaps even long dead. Hell's Banana Peel! -- the Three Great Goddesses are so very long lost, so very long gone, not only did they never reach the Whole Earth 669 years before the Great Flood, or Genesea, they never escaped from New Weirsystem on the Sedonshem, or Sedonship, in the first place.
There's a few other things to know about these devils. For example, there's no such thing as a fourth generation of devazurkind. Master Devas, in the absence of their mothers and even with the help of their fathers, cannot have devic offspring. All they can have are Spirit Beings, the azura-half of this race of extraterrestrials so maligned, usually quite rightly, by the still-emerging monotheistic religions, predominently Christianity, and their Xuthrodite/Anthean allies.
(NOTE 1: Constantine the Great -- whose legions worshiped him as a Leo or Lion, if not as an out-and-out incarnation of god, and considered Mithras their Holy Father -- only recognized Christianity in 313 AD. Which was some 63 years before this chapter takes place on the other side of Cathonia. As well, some would argue, the Roman Catholic Church did not come formally into existence until even later.)
(NOTE 2: Catholic, by the way, is not to be confused with Cathonic, though the Greek root word is similar, -- katholikos, meaning 'universal' or over all. Which is pertinent because, in this chapter, we start to learn a little about All the Invincible, the self-determinedly female, albeit mainly machine, Sphinx-like overseer of the Prison Beach of Incain. Needless to say, she/it comes more into play as this serial progresses.)
Another thing about devils is that they themselves were just Spirit Beings for most of their time on Earth. In fact, they did not start becoming individually solid entities until around 2000 YD. That was when one of them, Tvasitar Smithmonger, discovered Brainrock and began crafting them each power focuses or talismans. Crafted one for each of the Great Gods and, in absentia, the Great Goddesses too.
While most Master Devas can wield each other's power foci, not so the Trigregos Talismans. These three so-called Sacred Objects are poisonous to devas. And that, in a nutshell, is what this entire book's about, -- nut as in it drives whoever has one nuts. Whichever devil has one, that is. Not so non-devils though. Which of course makes them damn fine weapons to wield if you're anti-deva. (Like the Auntie Ants & Antie Uncles are, -- hint, hint!)
Why? Lots of reasons. For one he (also the golden brown warrior because that's essentially what Chrysaor means) is the lone child of Thrygragos Mithras and one of his 'daughters', Marut Kanin (or Marutia, -- named after Sedon's Cheek), the future Kore-Eris, Discord or Strife. For another his birth parents, not altogether as opposed to his possessive parents, were the Male and Female Entities in the early days (daze?) of their Seventh Lifetimes.
The Attis is also the main reason I described deviants as 'mostly still mortal'. Unlike virtually all others of his ilk (deviants being, in many respects, the equivalent of the Twentieth Century's supranormals), it seems that for going on 2400 hundred years now he's been getting killed on a fairly regular basis, -- usually by Cruel Plathon.
(By the way, the Bull of Mithras is an important, albeit usually peripheral, player in the 'Heliodyssey' series of stories currently appearing elsewhere on these web-pages. Along with the future Mater Matare, Mother Murder of War-Pox fame, he also shows up this chapter.)
So what's the deep-dreck doo-doo deal here? Thrygragos Mithras, who had been well venerated on both sides of the Dome, then-currently finds himself sadly lacking in the due-decibal dividends befitting divinity on the other side; this thanks mostly to these upstart Christian folks, fawns if not spawns of the hated Celestials and their Gnostic Christ. Greedy sort that he is, he needs to make up for what he's lost out there by gaining more adherents in here.
Trouble is the Inner Earth's adulation-quotient is currently being shared by his two 'brothers' in the Moloch Sedon: Thrygragos Byron, aka the Unmoving One (a quite-literally Buddha-like figurehead), and Thrygragos Lazareme, aka Lackland Libertine (a 'god-isn't-dead, he's-asleep' character). The solution? Simple. Supplant them, humiliate them, eliminate them as worship-warranted, -- basically just get rid of them. (Look up 'henotheism' if you don't know what it means already. That's what Mithras is prepared to offer his two, second generational brothers. With him as the top-dog top god, it goes without saying.)
They've risen to his bait; are coming at Mithras full-force. With all their then still-surviving spawn and all their armies to boot. And he's preparing to meet them, with all his and all theirs to boot even more butt. Only Mr. Mith's spawn don't like him; particularly his 'daughters'. After all, even on the Outer Earth, no female has ever been initiated into Mithraic rites.
Daddy's a tyrant, no nicer way to put it. Mith's maternally deficient; paternally dictatorial. Much better Great Byron or even Thrygragos Lazareme, dystopic maniac that he undeniably is. This if only because their children, regardless of sexual inclination, are treated as equals. Doubly this if only, in the latter's case, because of the Libertine's complete disinterest in their welfare; the welfare of any of his offspring save his first born, the three Unities: Order, Balance and, Lazareme's favourite, Chaos. All three of them are anarchists but probably none more so than Unholy Abaddon.
(Without giving away too much, Abe Chaos comes to take freewill to its irrational extreme. Still can't find a way to kill himself though. Not for lack of latter-day trying either, -- as will become apparent in future installments of both Launch and Heliodyssey.)
For Mr. Mith it's going to be: 'What's my back doing with all these knives sticking of out it; I feel like an outside-in porcupine' time. Demogorgon, thanks to the Pauper Priestess recently released from Incain, -- in return for nearly a hundred of Attis' ever-loyal Mithrant legionnaires --, will see to that.
Or will it, them, the Unnamable, the Conglomerate Deva? Answer's -- 'Nope!' At the risk of repeating myself, no dodo's our Great Greedy God.
Did I mention the Thrygragos Talismans? Did I mention that another name for Mithras is (was?) Saturn or, more familiarly, Kronos, -- Father Time, he who devours his own? Oh, and did I mention what the 'A' stands for in VAM Entity? Didn't?
Must have forgot!
2. The Trigregos Gambit: "Unholy Abaddon"
Double trouble this time up. Or, if you prefer, two stories for the price of one. Got to have a story teller though, thus we meet Jordan Tethys, the beer-guzzling, Cathy and Golden Applejack drinking, Legendary Thirty Year Man, for the first time since, you guessed it, Mind Tap. Story tellers have to have audience as well and the Legendarian has an audience of one, a very familar one, especially if you've been following 'Centauri Island', -- none other that Fatman himself, Alfredo Sentalli, aka Alpha Centauri.
It's Saturday, November 29, 1980, -- the same day we began the other two serials in 'The Launching of the Cosmic Express' serials. It's also Devauray, Tantalar 29, 5980. Does that mean the Fatman and the Legendarian are beyond Cathonia, on Sedon's Head? Wasn't something like that hinted at in Tap? Was indeed. So maybe now you can start rereading all your printed up previous installments of Island in a new light. (And not the one beside your bed either.)
No point going into what Centauri's up to on his Island. All that's covered in 'Centauri Island'. It's what he's up to on the Head that occupies much of Gambit. But, to gain an appreciation of what that involves we first have to gain an understanding of the Disunition of the Three Unities of Lazareme. This is what Tethys's Tail is all about. (By the way, tail isn't spelt wrong, but we don't need to get into tee-tee tails right now.)
His tale (that better?) begins on the Summer Solstice of 5454 Year of the Dome. That was the day Zalman Somata's wife gave birth to the terrible twins, Janna and Sraddha Somata. What made them so terrible? Mostly what they did later, actually, but a couple of words about their parents might be in order.
Firstly, though his bloodline is no longer pure Utopian, their father was the Master of the Weirdom of Kanin, quite possibly the Bible's Enoch City. Secondly, his possessive father, their possessive grandfather, was Lord Yajur, the devic Unity of Order. As for their mother, also not a pureblood Utopian, she was being possessed by a devil even as she gave them birth.
This Master Deva was none other than Lord Order's breed sister, Harmonia, the Unity of Balance. So, where's the third Unity, Chaos, in all this? The Legendarian doesn't say but, twenty years later, it's Unholy Abaddon who beds Janna. Does a little more than bed her, Tethys told.
Abaddon was definitely a loose cannon, probably the loosest cannon of all the loose cannons Lazareme fathered. There was something else about him though, -- something no other deva had --, and that was fertility. While devas and humans are physically compatible they aren't genetically so, which is why devas have to possess humans to have non-azura offspring. As we'll quickly see, Abaddon apparently didn't have this problem.
He is Chaos after all.
So, Janna's pregnant. Gives birth to a presumably mortal son in due time. This baby is the blood child of a devil however and, consequently, is much prized. Not only by his parents and Abaddon's tribe either. Mithras Spawn invaded Kanin City in number. They want the Chaos Kid to raise as one of their own.
Yama Nergal, the devic Grim Reaper, attacks Abaddon, draws him away from Janna's bedside, draws him all the way north and westward to the border of his own protectorate, the Ghost Lands (formerly the Elysian Fields). Other Mithradites, the likes of Zuvem Nergalis (Devil Doom aka Gravedigger), the Apocalyptics (Primary and Secondary), & Bouncing Belle Belialma (Sinistral Lust of Satanwyck), slip in behind and go for the kid. No such luck.
Lazareme Spawn, led by Order and Balance, are quickly on the scene. It's tribe versus tribe, Master Deva versus Master Deva. Needless to say, even in his absence, Chaos reigns. In the midst of all this manifest mayhem, another Lazaremist, one Vladuca Fangfingers by name, is left to stand guard over Janna and her newborn babe.
He's a fop, this First Fangs, and Janna can't stand him. She thinks the feeling's mutual. For good reason. According to tradition, he had been promised her. Chaos though, as was his wont, had other ideas and took her instead. Fangs doesn't seem aggrieved however. He gives Janna a glowing weapon, a curved Brainrock blade, to protect her in case the Mithradites overwhelm him. Which, of course, they return and easily do.
Janna uses the blade as instructed. Slices through the Weird, somehow even slicing through the Cathonic Zone, and sends her newborn to the Outer Earth, -- where he may or may not have ever been heard from again. (There's a story here somewhere; though, even if he knows it, Tethys doesn't tell it. Might it have something to do with the Male Entity's Fourth Lifetime? It may indeed. May also be that a man by the name of Goethe told it better than anyone.)
"Tell us your real reasons!" insisted Yajur. "You know Chaos never possesses humans and, consequently, has never had a mortal child before. You reckoned, with your tribe holding his son, he'd switch sides, fight alongside you Mithras Spawn against his own kind, like he once did when he joined Tantal Thanatos and helped expand the Empire of Lathakra.
Needles (pun alert!) to say, the Brainrock blade's the Susasword. Possession of it drives Master Devas entirely mad. Not a big step for Chaos, granted, but for someone like him to go even crazier can't bode well for the Headworld. And it doesn't, -- as events subsequently prove, insists Tethys, then proceeds to recount a few of them.
Devil Doom is executed, deva-style. (Yes, devas can be killed; just got to know how.) Janna turns her back on Chaos and takes up with First Fangs. Abaddon moves onto Satanwyck and takes up with Lady Lust. Returns a few years later though, cuts off Vladuca's hand, power focus attached (shades of both Moloch and Apocalyptics), and gives it to Janna. Thus she becomes Second Fangs.
Zalman Somata, returning to Kanin City after conquering the Weirdom of Cabalarkon, is slain by Chaos, using the Susasword. It's the first time a devil has deliberately killed a mortal, a direct violation of Sedonic Decree. Janna has a series of still-borns. Someone digs up Devil Doom's head and reunites it with his body. (Sure, devas can be killed; just don't stay dead very long.) Now just a Spirit Being again, Vladuca moves onto Satanwyck. There's the vampires ....
... And then Alpha Centauri gets the call from Yataghan, his son. Something's wrong on the Island that bears his name. It's Professor Kinesis's doing. You better get out here. Which the Fatman does, in Centauri Island, but no before giving the Legendarian a cigar band.
"So what is it, -- a signal for Janna to destroy the Island?"
Did I mention that Yataghan's wife is named Janna? Did I mention that Tethys might be a devic suicide? Oh, and did I mention the customer in the nearby cafeteria, the one who's always smiling? Didn't?
Must have forgot!
3. The Trigregos Gambit: "Balance Betrayed"
Introducing the twelve-foot tall, thickly-bearded, blue-skinned devagod of Fire Kings and Intuits, his six-inch, red-skinned wife, and -- damn, forgot already!
Actually that's wrong. They've been introduced before: the wife by name (not that devas have names as such) in Trig-1; the husband dot ditto; and the other guy, dit dotto. All over the place as well. But this chapter's not all that much about them. Mostly it's about the continuing saga of the Disunition of the Three Unities of Lazareme.
There's other stuff going on though; stuff leading into GAME-Gambit, which begins this time up. For example, we meet Ferdinand Niarchos, the governor of New Iraxas in Godbad's northeast corner bordering Hadd, the Land of the Dead.
We also learn that Alpha Centauri intends to salt the Cloud of Hadd, to make it rain there for the first time since the First War Between the Living and the Dead. And, if it wasn't for the Disunition of the Three Unities of Lazareme, there never would have been a First War.
Oh, and did I mention Gottfried Kenton? Rather, did I mention that Kenton was smiling even more than he usually does? Or, more to point, that Kenton wasn't in Aka Godbad City even though he appeared to be? Didn't?
Must have forgot!
4. The Trigregos Gambit: "Lord Order"
All Death Day, the Thousand Days of Disbelief, the Byronic Nucleus as that Great God's Tribal Demogorgon, Vampires galore, Zombies and gore, the Headworld's equivalent of the Conquistadores, Iraches as blood-worshipping, vamp-loving neolithics, Mithradites like Lady Lust and the Primary Apocalyptics, devic suicide (one brood-brother), and cathonitization (other brood-brother).
Want more? How about the end of the First War Between the Living and the Dead, the fate of the Somata Twins (Janna & Sraddha) as well as their devic mother and devic grandfather, All the Invincible, talk of Ringleader, the Susasword and the Amateramirror. Then there's that guy again, -- the one who never stops smiling.
I didn't forget him this time; just forgot to mention his real name (not that devas have real names as such; his Etocretan name, then). No problem. It's here too. Don't even have to look for it in Homer's Odyssey, though there's nothing wrong with doing so. It's there too.
The Trigregos Gambit, PREGAME, Chapters 1-4
The Trigregos Gambit, GAME, Chapters 5-8
The Trigregos Gambit, GAME, Chapters 9-13
The Trigregos Gambit, ENDGAME, Chapters 14-17
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