Well, good ol’ Cygno here can help ye wi’ this trusty guide! Available in all the shady places over the Kairos galaxy. This guide here’ll tell ye all about how to find the best markets in Pias and how tae not get scammed by some scoundrel.
First off, terribly sorry for ye bein’ here. I dunno if ye were forced tae run from the gangs or police in Canopy City or whatever other tragedy befell ye, but sorry. Pias ain’t a holiday site once yer under the leaves, I can tell ye that fer sure.
By the time yer readin’ this, y’ll have discovered that those Waspitai’s ‘ll kill ye if ye give them the chance and that yer best hope of living is building a treehouse in the lowermost branches of th’ Sap engine-trees.
Oh, aye, word o’ advice... don’t go stealin’ the Sap from the trunks of the trees. That powers Canopy City so it does, so they’ll have sensors an’ all that locked on to ye. The police’ll be pulse-bombing yer house before you can use the Sap for anythin’ useful. Best to not do that, ‘kay?
Yer gonna need a torch.
Even in broad daylight ye won’t be able to see the deep depths of the jungle without one. Behind ev’ry leaf a million and one things want tae rip ye to shreds and eat yer remains. Half of ‘em ‘aint even got a name ‘cause all the scientists died tryin’ to capture specim’ns, so they did.
Of course, when ye come face tae face with th’ blasphemies a simple light ‘aint gonna do shit. So ya better have a good ol’ phase weapon, makeshift armour too if ye can find it. If ye can get the bark off those trees and can model it into shields and stuff like that then ye’ll have a better chance o’ survival. Of, like, three perc’nt, but hey ho ye gotta take ‘em when they come yer way.
Oh, and take all yer belongings with ye. Ye’ll see why later.
So, yer on the ground, scared away all th’ creatures an’ now yer ready to get on yer way.
Ye better cover yer legs up well. On the jungle floor there’s a big manner o’ beasties that’ll dig into yer organs and make ‘em into cocoon hotels, bug restaurants an’ even worse things. Once saw a man whose heart had ripped its way through his body an’ had turned into a Chalchra Mother, so I did. Poor sod. Those barbed tentacles must’ve hurt when cuttin’ his skin tae ribbons.
Anyway, if that’s all sorted my next tip is tae avoid all fruit, things that look edible and definitely water. I’ve seen men melt into flesh puddles when drinkin’ from streams and burns and the like in the Pias undergrowth. And believe me, ye don’t wanna be in their shoes. Or lack of.
Th’ next step should be easy. The only way ye can be standin’ still is if yer in the Tarsia Sector. Otherwise... well mate, no one’ll ever know fer sure how ye died but anyone who goes into Von-Kumen, Farpacia or Yuondria never comes back. Well done on gettin’ my guide though.
Tarsia Sector is a relatively small part of Pias. To know if yer still in it, just look up. If ye see the hoverpads o’ Canopy City yer all right. Some people say that the transmissions o’ the city keep away the really bad things, but I dunno. I’m no scientist.
To get to a market, ya gotta look fer the stones. Y’see, long before Pias chocked itself tae death in flora, there was ‘tis city o’ ancient people. Some say they’re an obscure Descendant civilization, 3rd Gen, but what we do know is that they left a city. And they also built roads, but they’re long gone so don’t bother tryin’ to dig up the leaves for ol’ paving stones. Nah, that’s what the stones are for.
These small pyramids o’ pure white diamond. Really heavy an’ impossible to break. Well, these Ancient Piasians put ‘em here many years ago and they still stand. Some say that they’re really massive and that most of are just covered in dead leaves an’ that, leaving only these lil’ tops. No one’s ever been ballsy enough tae check, mind.
These stones’ll shine a beam o’ light to the next pyramid, and then another, and so on, so all ye gotta do is follow the light trail. Be warned, though, the light ‘aint always clear. An’ then there’s all them evil monsters tae deal with too.
If ye ain’t dead at the end o’ this all, ye should find yerself at th’ front of a big ol’ stone archway. Well, it’ll look more like a hedge ‘cos of all the plants an’ that, but it’ll be an archyway.
An’ this is th’ entrance to Lempo City.
No one knows th’ real name o’ the ruins. Them Ancient Paisians all buggered off before makin’ a comprehensible language or contact wi’ the C.U.F.P. So, all th’ people who found it named it Lempo an’ set up camp.
Nah, ye ain’t gonna get to live in any of them fancy mini-temples or ruined houses. Aye, might seem like a luxury from a treehouse, but ye don’t wanna stay in the city. Ye’ll get dragged into gang politics and before ye know it someone’ll be after yer head. Believe me, I had tae get rid of many a bounty hunter from bloody self defense alone when I lived there, aye! How was I tae know she was the daughter of the bloody boss of the richest smokepod stall, damnit.
Lempo ain’t much o’ a city. Just a bunch o’ mossy ruins with people livin’ in the husks o’ shrines. There’s one fire pit which goes on ev’ry month or so fer festivals and ceremonial stuff like that, but besides that it’s just a place fer social interaction.
Best not tae do that in the open, mind. Monsters still come an’ go outside.
Aye, fer gossip from above and safe food yer better goin’ tae The Zigg.
The Zigg. A giant ol’ ziggurat, standin’ like a brick mountain. Compared tae the trees around it, howev’r, it may as well be a lil’ mole mound. Tae be fair though, down ‘ere the moles make mounds big as spaceships,. My point is, it’s pretty damn big.
Gettin’ in is pretty easy. Well, as long as ye haven’t pissed off any of the gang leaders that is, heh. On the bottom-most level of the giant bricks, there’s a big hole which’ll be guarded. Ye’ll only be able to see two of them, but believe me, there are many more watchin’ ye from the shadows.
Unless ye cause trouble, ye’ll just be able to walk right in, no questions asked. We all got blood on our hands, no need to bring it up.
First of all, ye’ve got tae fail tae be amazed. And believe me, ye’ll be amazed.
The inside’s illuminated with millions of floatin’ nano-suns (stolen from Canopy). A thousand smells, sights, and sounds all put into this one big place. Ye’ve got stalls hanging off vines in the roof ran by Humo-bats, forest villages full of merchant Sparrawtins, scrap palaces filled tae the brim wi’ Cattiz and stalls, oh so many stalls.
‘Tis the safest place on Pias, so it is.
Mappin’ the Zigg is an impossible task, I’m afraid. Stalls rise and get raided, gangs migrate from corner tae corner, freak fires erupt from cookers and turn a thousand shopkeepers tae ash. The only way tae explore and understand ‘tis place is tae just wander.
I can still give ye some tips, though. First o’ all, don’t ask anyone where they got their stuff from. Ye won’t like the answers, believe me.
Second of all, be as nice an’ polite as possible. It still won’t be enough, ‘cause ye’ll manage to piss someone off there by doing something impossible tae not do. Like havin’ a nose, for example.
Third, don’t take any offers o’ smokepod. Massive headaches afterwards.
Oh, an’ don’t bring any money either. Barely anyone’ll accept it.
Aye, the currency here is food, weapons an’ loyalty. I wouldn’t do the last one, mind. That often ends up messy, what with all the gangs and that.
Problem with them is, ye never know who’s in a gang. Ye’ve just gotta be careful.
Spend as much time as possible in there, ‘cause it’s a helluva lot safer than outside. Ye should be able tae find makeshift inns to sleep in if gets tae evening. Barely anyone returns from the night.
What ye buy is totally up to ye, but make sure it ain’t too heavy ‘cause yer gonna have to carry it all the way back to yer tree-house-place. I wouldn’t buy materials for improvin’ it; ye’ll probably never find it ever again so there’s no point in doin’ so.
Ye want food. Worried its poisoned? Well, tough luck ‘cause you ain’t got any better chance in th’ wild. It’s safer in the Zigg anyway. ‘Specially from the Cattiz, they’re brill wi’ food and that.
So, you’ve got yer stuff an’ slept in one of the inns. Gettin’ back is pretty simple; ye just follow the light trail of those pyramids until the sun begins tae set an’ ye choose a tree taw spend th’ night in.
And there ye have it! Ye’ve successfully been tae the shops in the Pias undergrowth. Well done.
Next time ye go to the Zigg, ye should stop off at my stall. It shouldn’t be too hard tae find; it’s one of the only ones that sells books and that. There ye can buy more guides, like “How Tae Set Up A Stall In The Zigg” and “A Step-By-Step Guide Tae Stealin’ Sap In Pias”. Aye, it’ll be grand.
See ye there one day, I hope. Unless ye get ripped apart by all manner of beasts. In which case, ah well.
It's a guide on how to get the shopping done on a hostile jungle planet.
Glad I got it done.
EDIT: 22/09/13 ... woah. I'm not going to lie, I'd like to believe I was going to get a DD one day... but I'd always thought it would be on one of my poems. I also expected it to be something I didn't think was worthy of a DD, but this never crossed my mind xD
Many thanks to *xlntwitch and ^neurotype for suggesting and featuring, respectively.
The voice does add a certain something to it, yeah xP
Yeah, people do really seem to like the world building in this. May just have to involve it in something else, sighhhhhh xP
Yeah, I can easily understand why the whole colloquialism of the narrator's language would get tiresome. It makes it really hard to edit as well; I kept on finding typos for a while even after getting a DD >__>
The problem is is that I think one of the main elements of the story is the narrator, Cygno, and the brogue (I guess you don't mean Gaelic shoe) is a part of him, so I don't know any way to bring about a compromise.
I did like the feel to the name of the Zigg too. It felt very it's-the-place-to-be...y.
Again, thanks for the comment, and glad you enjoyed it
That guide bit at the end was just something I thought of as another thing he could have written xP
By the way, your literature is the most remarkable! Congrats!
I guess people mistaking this for fanfiction should be a good sign that my world building skills are realistic?
Very much so. Have you written anything else in this setting?
Thanks for replying, by the way. Most other DD winners seem to be too busy.
And you;re welcome; I think its more that we get so overwhelmed by the comments. I am grateful for them all xD
Nice job though, not bad.
I meant it more that if I worked hard enough and improved my work, I would be able to get to DD-quality.
But hey, it's a good place to be regardless, pretty darn neat.
Although I do agree that it is some kind of lottery of contacts and the like, I also think the quality of the pieces plays into it as well. The quality of the DDs are normally, if not always, to a very high one.
As a CV, I guess you don't think there's any kind of lottery-ishness to DD selection?
I'd say a decent fraction of DD's are pretty high quality, but there's still a chunk out there that make me sit forward in my seat and question how it even got a DD... which strengthens my theory that some of these people are just reeeaaallly good buddies with gatekeepers.
Not suggesting you didn't deserve a DD, just pointing that bit out; that buddy-buddy practice is unprofessional and it's an injustice to skilled artists on this site. We're all supposed to pretend that it doesn't happen, but it does...
Because by talking to you I'd get a narrowed and edited answer, don't you get that? That's like, asking a used car salesman if I can trust what is being sold to me. I don't sit in my mom's basement and think up crazy theories, I've had a few experiences here that caused me to think that way. That might be narrow-minded (if you wish to dismiss my personal experiences) but your statement implies that: 1) all gatekeepers are honest and 2) all gatekeepers are worth talking to.
I'm just sayin, I'm not going to "win" this conversation anyway, you've already assumed I'm narrow-minded, which ironically, might be narrow-minded.