Book of Ages

From NeoDex
Jump to: navigation, search
The Book of Ages.

The Book of Ages is a tome describing how the city of Altador came to be founded. It is part of the Altador Plot, and at the beginning of the plot appears mostly blank. It is enchanted to reveal more chapters as the player discovers more constellations, until it is complete by the end of the plot. During the plot, it is the only book on Altadorian history to be found in the entire city.

Plot summary[edit]

Altador Plot[edit]

Main article: Altador Plot
The book serves an unintended purpose.

The player first encounters the Book of Ages in the Altadorian Archives, where Finneus is using it to hold up the leg of his table, which is exactly three inches too short. The player must retrieve a perfectly flat three inch rock from the Perfectly Flat Rock Quarry to replace it before Finneus is willing to remove it. From then on, it is placed on a reading desk in the Archivist's office where it can be read at leisure.

At this point in the plot, only the prologue is filled in, but after the player identifies the Sleeper constellation, Finneus notes that the book has begun to fill itself in. Every time the player identifies a constellation with their telescope, the book will update with a chapter about that founder. Finneus discovers that the Book of Ages is the only book on history that can be found in the entire city, and notes that everyone's memories of the city's founding have been erased as well.

At the end of the final chapter on Altador, it features an illustration of The Darkest Faerie holding flames. This gives Finneus the idea to enchant her statue to make the flames real.

After The Darkest Faerie's statue is destroyed and the history-hiding spell is undone, the Book of Ages updates for a final time with an epilogue. Jerdana explains that she had enchanted to book to update as the constellations were discovered.

Contents[edit]

Prologue[edit]

Long ago, before the building of our great city, twelve heroes arose. Each was famous for different deeds of varying natures. The greatest of these heroes is the one whom we now know as King Altador. He, with the aid of the other heroes, founded our illustrious city by the sea.
Before the Great Betrayal, the kingdom of Altador was one of the most glorious places in all Neopia. It was a centre of culture and greatly admired for its dignified citizens. Those blessed times were nearly lost when one of our own, who once called herself an ally and friend to the heroes, turned her heart to darkness and attempted to destroy the city. Only by Jerdana's magic were we saved, though our future remains uncertain.
Within this tome you will find the recorded history of the twelve heroes and how they came to form the Kingdom of Altador. Protect this knowledge well, for it may be all that is left if Jerdana's magic fails and the betrayer succeeds....

Chapter 1 - The Sleeper[edit]

Just as a hero must perform a heroic deed before he can be named as such, a villain must also do something terrible in order to earn such a title. The Betrayer was not always an evil being and was once even respected for her deeds. Long before the Great Betrayal, (in fact, before the founding of Altador), she earned her place among the twelve Founders by saving the life of King Altador himself.
A terrible menace was plaguing a peaceful farmland, and a hunter (the future king of Altador) journeyed forth to slay the beast. He tracked it back to its lair in a cave at the base of a mountain and there cornered it. Though the beast roared viciously, Altador did not falter.
Rather, he notched an arrow and let it fly, striking the beast squarely in the head. Even as the vile creature slumped to the ground, another of its kind snuck up on the unsuspecting Lupe. The noble hunter would have fallen then and there if not for a purple blast of magic. Startled, Altador spun around, just in time to see the other creature collapse. There, standing behind it, was a dark faerie... the Betrayer.
Altador thanked her graciously for saving his life. He had never witnessed such compassion on the part of a dark faerie before, so he bid her to return with him to his village, where they would feast and be praised as heroes.
Each carried the head of the beast they had slain to the village, and a grand celebration was held long into the night. Altador, realising what a unique ally he had acquired, asked her to stay and join him and his companions in fulfilling a dream he had of founding a great city. The Betrayer agreed, and though she would ultimately help to build the kingdom's august capital and serve the council well, nothing can make up for her terrible betrayal. She broke the king's heart, for no sword strikes as deep as the one wielded by a friend....

Chapter 2 - The Dreamer[edit]

Though she lacks the worldwide fame of other Neopian faeries, Psellia is well known and revered for her kindness in Altador. She always does her best to encourage others to achieve and is always there to catch them if they stumble in their lives. A rather inspirational figure, Psellia is known throughout Altador as "the Dreamer."'
One day, long before the founding of Altador, Psellia was relaxing on the clouds of Faerieland when a Blumaroo bounced too close to the edge of a cloud and slipped off. Psellia watched in horror as the Blumaroo plunged toward the sea far below.
She knew the poor creature would not survive the fall, so she leapt off the cloud and darted downward, fluttering her wings as fast as they could go.
The turbulent sea grew closer and closer, and Psellia could see the Blumaroo's terrified eyes as he desperately flailed his arms toward her. Though her muscles burned with the effort of flying faster than she ever had, the air faerie was determined to catch the falling Neopet before it was too late.
Using the last of her strength, Psellia let loose an amazing burst of speed that only an air faerie could manage and grasped the Blumaroo's outstretched hand. With his paw firmly in her grip, Psellia tried to slow their fall, straining at the air until they landed in the ocean with an almost delicate splash. With the last of her energy, Psellia swam to a nearby shore, dragging the Blumaroo safely onto dry land, where they could recover.
This heroic tale spread quickly, and soon thereafter Altador requested that Psellia join him in forming the Kingdom of Altador.

Chapter 3 - The First to Rise[edit]

Long ago, when the Kingdom of Altador was little more than a whisper on King Altador's lips, the heroic legend of Siyana the light faerie arose. It is often said that through her actions alone, an entire village was saved from a most dreadful fate.
During her travels, Siyana once stopped at a small, peaceful farming village. The locals were kind, gracious Neopets, so Siyana stayed in their village for many weeks, helping to keep their crops from frosting over in the chilly nights.
One evening, after checking the crops, she spotted a shadowy form moving in the woods.
Suspicious, Siyana grabbed a thick blanket to hide her light and trailed the stranger at a distance, deep into the woods, until he joined a group of bandits gathered around a campfire. She flew in as close as she dared and listened from a high branch.
"Well done, scout," said their leader. "Soon that village will be ours!" Siyana dropped the blanket and fled as quickly as she could. One of the bandits spotted her and fired an arrow. A terrible pain shot through her left wing, and she fell to the ground. Though she couldn't fly, the courageous faerie ran as swiftly as her legs would carry her, with the bandits in close pursuit.
When she finally reached the village, Siyana was out of breath and could not shout to wake the villagers! Instead, she focused all of her light faerie power to glow as brightly as she could. Thinking the sun had risen, the villagers came outside, and saw the band of thieves approaching. They armed themselves and chased the bandits away for good.
The villagers could hardly express their gratitude to the light faerie. One of the farmers, a Kacheek named Florin, told her that there was a noble Lupe she should perhaps meet. When she did, Siyana the light faerie came to be one of the founders of Altador.

Chapter 4 - The Farmer[edit]

Not everyone who helped found Altador was a magical faerie, capable of using their natural gifts to help others. In fact, one of the most notable of all the founders was a simple farmer with a good heart...
Florin had lived his whole life on a small farm. Each day he rose with the sun, to tend his crops and feed the Petpets he raised on his farm. Though Florin worked hard from dawn to dusk, he greatly enjoyed his simple life.
One day, while going into town to buy more Petpet feed, Florin noticed a group of farmers talking. Apparently, some strange blight was afflicting their crops, and unless something was done, a whole season of food would be lost.
Florin asked one of the farmers to show him one of these sick plants. The farmer led Florin to his nearby field, a third of which had been consumed by some terrible disease that had turned the plants black.
Florin had spent much of his life studying plants. Though his own crops were unaffected, he spent days trudging through dangerous woods, looking for a rare plant that few knew existed.
Days later, as the villagers were just about ready to give up hope, Florin returned, carrying a satchel that was filled with a strange herb they had never seen before. The Kacheek quickly ground up the dry herbs and mixed them into a large trough of water. He then instructed the other farmers to take a bucket and pour the water onto their afflicted plants. Within days, the blight had vanished, and though Florin's own crops wilted from neglect, the villagers were more than happy to share their crops with him.
Tales of his selfless deed soon reached others, and that is how Florin came to meet King Altador and become the future overseer of the kingdom's plentiful farms.

Chapter 5 - The Dancer[edit]

The true worth of a kingdom, it is said, should not be judged by the wealth of its treasury, but by the happiness of its people. An excellent example of this lesson can be found in the form of Sasha the Dancer, a Cybunny who had the gift of indomitable spirit.
A great festival was once planned in the quiet town where Sasha grew up. For months, the villagers toiled so that their festival would be the grandest ever. Though they worked hard all day at their normal jobs, the villagers laboured long into the night to set up a grand stage and saved as much of their food as they could for the gala event.
When the day of the festival finally arrived, the town was buzzing with excitement.
At last they would enjoy the fruits of their labour, sing, dance, and get a much-needed break from their daily lives. But when the festival was just hours away, an extremely fierce set of winds began to blow. The town elders herded everyone into a large basement below the town hall for safety.
For hours, Sasha sang to the children and kept them calm as the adults fretted and worried. After the howling wind quieted down, the townsfolk pushed open the trapdoor that led to the basement, only to find that their beloved bandstand and food stores for the celebration had been utterly destroyed.
Seemingly, the spirit of their community had been destroyed, too. A dark cloud seemed to hang over them. But that's when the Cybunny stepped forward, despite the chaos...
...and began to dance, as if she were on a beautiful stage. The villagers were shocked, but soon began to smile and join Sasha's dancing. The sound of their revelry was heard well into the night. It wasn't long before the future King Altador came to the village, seeking the dancing Cybunny named Sasha. Altador understood the power of hope and inspiration, so he warmly welcomed her to be a part of his council.

Chapter 6 - The Wave[edit]

The courage to lead is a trait that few possess, and the ability to lead well is even rarer. Marak, the leader of a peaceful clan of Peophins, was one blessed with this ability...
Marak ruled over a small underwater village at the base of a drop-off just beyond the shore. His clan had coexisted peacefully with a town of fishermen who had lived on the coast for many years. Of late, however, due to their over-fishing, food was becoming scarce. The land folk blamed the shortage on the Peophins. Though Marak tried to reach a peace agreement with the leader of the fishermen, hostility between the two camps escalated quickly.
One day, giant rocks tumbled from atop the cliff, smashing several homes. Marak investigated, and was horrified to learn that the surface-dwellers had rolled the giant boulders down onto his village! Infuriated by this senseless act, Marak returned to his village and organised for battle.
Soon, the village's entire population was spread out in a long line, three Peophins deep, just below the water's surface. At Marak's signal, they swam forward as fast as they could, creating a huge wave that washed the fishermen away from the rocks they'd been pushing into the sea. Both sides continued battling into the evening. Tired, wet, and hungry, the fishermen finally gave up.
Though Marak was still angry, he did not want to leave a mutual hatred that would only fester, so he went ashore and spoke with the fishermen's leader. He reasoned that continuing like this was senseless. Persuaded by the Peophin's visit, the town leader agreed to work with Marak to find a peaceful solution.
A few years later, King Altador heard the tale of Marak's strong leadership, and offered to let the Peophin and his clan live off the shore of what would become the city of Altador.

Chapter 7 - The Gladiator[edit]

Physical strength, coupled with a strong sense of virtue, is often lacking in this world. One who steps forward and demonstrates both will quickly become a legend. Such is the tale of Torakor, the Gladiator.
In the old days, armies often collided, at a great cost of money and lives. Sometimes, to spare those costs, each army would send forth its greatest warrior and let a one-on-one battle decide the victor. A Grarrl named Torakor was the strongest warrior in one such army, and he won many victories for his commanding general. With Torakor faithfully at his side, the general thought his army to be invincible, and decided to expand his territories. Torakor was troubled by this, but who was he to question his leader?
One day, the army came to a small village the general wanted to conquer. His huge army surrounded the village, and he shouted a challenge to the townsfolk. "Who will face my champion? Send forth your greatest warrior, or bow before me!" All was silent until a quivering Shoyru stepped forward, armed with only a garden hoe. The army burst into laughter--except Torakor. He approached the Shoyru, then turned to face his own army.
"I will fight for them," Torakor stated. "Step forth, any who think they can best me in battle."
His general shouted, enraged. "Eliminate this traitor, at once!"
Mortified by the order to attack one of their own--thousands against one, no less--the warriors lost confidence in the general's leadership, just as Torakor had. One by one, the soldiers joined the Grarrl, facing outward from the village. Torakor, through strength of virtue alone, had won his own army. Word spread quickly of a mighty army that protected villages instead of sacking them. It wasn't long before Torakor received a letter, informing him that a new city could use an army such as his. Torakor gladly accepted.

Chapter 8 - The Collector[edit]

When it comes to financial dealings, it is very easy for one's morals to slip, since greed is a very powerful and terrible desire. Those who can resist its call are greatly valued for their honesty. That is why Gordos, our Skeith tax collector, is always smiled upon--even when he comes to collect.
Before Gordos helped to found Altador, he served a city that severely taxed its citizens. He felt bad for taking such a large portion of everyone's earnings, but the governor insisted that every Neopoint was being put to good use and that high taxes were necessary to keep the city prosperous and growing.
Gordos took the governor at his word, but eventually he noticed that the city was falling into ruin. Crime had escalated, and many went to sleep hungry. Wondering why a city with so much tax revenue was not flourishing, Gordos went to talk to the governor. When he was denied entrance, Gordos pushed his way into the governor's home... and was shocked to see it lavishly decorated. Expensive art and exquisite rugs lined the rooms. Golden plates and goblets were set on a table with enough food for thirty townspeople.
Gordos clenched his teeth. So this was where the tax money had gone? To gold platters for the governor to dine upon while the people starved? Gordos confronted the governor, who attempted to bribe him, offering to share his riches if Gordos kept quiet. But Gordos would have none of that. He alerted the police, and had the governor removed from office. Gordos then sold the luxury items, returned the profits to the people, and reduced the tax rate to a fifth of what it had been.
Word of Gordos's deeds soon came to the attention of King Altador, and before the next new moon, the brave tax collector was in the council of an honest leader.

Chapter 9 - The Thief[edit]

here is an old saying that it takes a thief to catch a thief. There is some truth to this old adage, as was proven by Kelland, the Techo thief...
Born into a life of thievery, Kelland never questioned his role in society, much less whether what he did was right or wrong. Stealing was simply a part of his nature. One day, he watched as a tired Elephante collected his weekly wages, and headed down a dark, empty alley.
Moments later, an Aisha jumped from a nearby rooftop, grabbed the Elephante's small coin purse, and escaped into the shadows, leaving the poor worker helpless. For the first time in his life, Kelland felt something stir inside of him. Was it sympathy? When he returned to the thieves' den later that night, Kelland saw the Aisha thief lounging about.
Disgusted, Kelland walked past the Aisha, and using his great stealth, stole the coin pouch back. Quietly, the Techo returned to the streets, to where he had seen the Elephante sullenly trudge home. Kelland placed the pouch on the Elephante's doorstep and knocked, then leapt onto the roof. Below, he heard the door open, followed by a gasp of joy.
The Elephante looked around, but saw no one. "Whoever returned this," he said into the cold night, "has my eternal gratitude. Thank you." He left a few of the coins on his doorstep and closed the door. Kelland dropped to the street and picked up the coins. He felt oddly fulfilled, something his life of crime had never brought him.
From that moment on, the Techo used his skills for good whenever possible, doing his best to ensure that the working poor did not suffer from crime. Word soon spread about this reformed thief, and it wasn't long before a wise Lupe asked him to join his council, for light from darkness is a rare quality indeed.

Chapter 10 - The Gatherer[edit]

The gentlest heart in our world belongs to Fauna, an Acara whose kindness knows no bounds. Fauna always had a knack for nurturing living things. On the small farm where she grew up, the apples Fauna tended grew to an enormous size and were the most delicious in all the land. Everyone smiled and waved when Fauna walked through town, and Petpets often followed at her heels.
One day, the Acara noticed that the parade of Petpets that usually followed her was nowhere to be seen. Seeing Fauna's confusion, a kind old Usul spoke up. "Sorry, m'dear. That storm last night scared them so badly, they all went running off into the dark. Poor things. I do hope they'll be able to find their way home."
Knowing that many predators roamed the edge of town, Fauna immediately set off to find the Petpets, followed by two pitchfork-wielding townsfolk who came along to protect her. After a while, Fauna heard the alarmed squeals of a Snorkle. They rushed toward the noise and found the Petpet cornered by a giant, snarling creature.
The creature glared at Fauna and the others as they approached, letting out a terrifying snarl. Even though they were the only ones armed, the two scared villagers began to back away.
Fauna, however, simply knelt, and held out an apple. The beast growled and bared its teeth, but Fauna did not flinch. The townsfolk gasped as the beast drew close, its jaws just inches from the Acara's face. The creature then opened its mouth and gently took the apple from Fauna's outstretched hand. She smiled and stroked the beast's furry mane. The villagers nearly fell over in shock as the creature began to lick the giggling Acara's face.
The story of gentle Fauna, who could tame the fiercest beast with her kindness and patience, soon travelled far and wide. Then, one day, a tall white Lupe knocked upon her door...

Chapter 11 - The Protector[edit]

Our noble lady Jerdana, who protects the city from harm, has always held a special place in our hearts. She is a benevolent sorceress who commands great respect for her deeds.
Before joining the Council of Twelve, Jerdana was a wanderer. She called no place home for very long and relied on the kindness of those she aided for food and shelter. The Aisha was searching for something, but even she was not sure what it was that she sought.
One evening, Jerdana came across a Lupe hunter sitting by a campfire. Before she could even ask, he welcomed her to sit by the fire and share his food. Jerdana smiled and accepted the kind Lupe's offer.
They sat and spoke for a time, and she listened to his dream of one day founding a glorious and noble city. They were so focused on their discussion that they were nearly caught unawares when a pack of snarling Werelupes formed a circle around them. The Lupe, spotting movement beyond the fire's glow, jumped up and drew his weapon just as one of them rushed in to attack.
Jerdana, knowing they were vastly outnumbered, threw up her arms. A shield of light instantly fell over her and the Lupe. Though the Werelupes scratched and raged at the barrier, they were unable to pass it and finally loped off into the night.
Amazed, the Lupe turned to Jerdana. "Your power astounds me!" The Aisha blushed, for she thought herself humble. "With your powers of protection, my just leadership, and the help of other strong hearts, we could make a city of legends."
Jerdana smiled. "For years I have sought my true calling, and tonight I think I have found it. I will follow you, noble Lupe, although I don't yet know your name."
"My apologies, fair lady. Please, call me Altador."

Chapter 12 - The Hunter[edit]

It is a little-known fact that Altador, the Lupe hunter, did not name the city that bears his name after himself. Rather, when the time came to name their future city, all twelve council members submitted a name by placing their ballot into a box. As Altador pulled each piece of parchment from the box, he was surprised to find that everyone but he had written "Altador" as their suggestion. In a single action, Altador demonstrated his hallmark humility and sincerity, and the loyalty he inspired in others.
The heroism of Altador cannot be described in a single event, however. Rather, a lifetime of noble deeds and good character earned him the title of "hero."
Altador was raised in a city of corrupt leaders. One by one, his neighbours left to seek a better life. Before long, little was left of Altador's hometown. The citizens wandered, looking for somewhere to make a new start. Though still young, Altador did his best to help by hunting for food. It was during this time that he began to develop his skills with the bow and arrow.
The townsfolk soon settled and built a new village. Though they prospered, life was difficult without a city's resources.
There were no great festivals, and trade with other lands was minimal. Once an adult, Altador left to seek out a new city, one with good and just leaders. The villagers gave him their blessing, hoping that one day he would return and lead them to a brighter future.
And so Altador set out, travelling from one city to another. Along his journey, he kept hearing similar stories about the governors of each place he visited. Greed and an insatiable lust for power appeared to be widespread, and the governed always seemed to suffer for it. Altador might have lost hope, and given up his quest, had it not been for one fateful day.
Altador crested a hill and saw lush plains, perfect for farming, beside a beautiful shore. This would be an amazing place for a city, he thought, staring in awe across the fruitful land. Too bad there isn't one here already.
And then it came to him: Could he, a simple Lupe with no desire for wealth or power, be capable of founding a great city? Even if he could, it would take many years of work. How could he possibly accomplish such an undertaking all on his own?
He would have to find others who shared the same dream--others who would swear to uphold what is right over what is easy, and not fall into corruption.
Determined to make his dream a reality, Altador set off. It would take years, but he would find others to join him in building his city. In every town he met, the Lupe listened for tales of great deeds, striving to find others who could share in his dream. He would then gather all those living in the scattered villages across the land--including the one he had called home so long ago. Finally, he would unite them under one banner, which would represent truth and virtue... forever.

Epilogue - The Veiled Past[edit]

The early years flew by for King Altador and his council, as the city began to take form. For hundreds of miles, Neopians from all over the countryside flocked to the budding city. Its twelve heroic rulers pledged that, together, they would form the greatest and most noble city to ever grace Neopia's landscape. Even King Altador himself, when he wasn't holding court, would help place stones and build walls side by side with the his subjects.
These building sessions would often last late into the night, until the builders' torches had burned themselves out. The one who would one day come to be known as the Betrayer wished to use her magical powers to speed the process, but Altador simply shook his head each time she suggested it. "One appreciates a home far more when it is he who places its stones."
The truth of his words was bourne out by the immaculate care that Altador's inhabitants took of the city when it was finally completed. No one threw trash to the ground, or marked upon a wall, as that would only serve to dishonour and defile what they had strived so hard to create.
Word spread of the magnificent city, and soon caravans began to arrive, bringing goods to be bartered for the amazing crops and fine products that the kingdom had started to produce. Within a few short years, the kingdom of Altador became known as a center of culture and enlightenment. Here, everyone could live out their lives in comfort and dignity.
To insure that the glorious city survived the ages, Siyana, the First to Rise, blessed its mortal heroes with the gift of great longevity. Decades came and went, and Altador remained a shining beacon to those who wished for just rulers.
Seeing that the kingdom was the envy of all others, the Betrayer suggested to Altador that Torakor and his soldiers be sent forth to unite all the other kingdoms under the Lupe's fair rule. Once again, Altador kindly denied her proposal. "Our army is a defensive one, not offensive. If I ordered Torakor to use the army to intimidate others into joining our kingdom, even if I thought that it would eventually be for their own good, I would be no better than the leader that Torakor once wisely stood against."
Although the Betrayer hated having her ideas declined, she could only admit that Altador's wisdom was once again correct. Some feel that events such as these sowed the seeds for her future betrayal. In the meantime, however, the kingdom of Altador continued to prosper, until that fateful day....

External links[edit]