Star-Fired Beef

The Secret Lore – The Ankh

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See all the Secret Lore here.

The Ankh is a group instance in the Scorched Desert zone of The Secret World. I haven’t been inside, but I have discovered the first remnants of Dr Klein’s research nearby the entrance. Needless to say, it ended badly for all involved.

The Ankh

Our wisdom flows so sweet. Taste and see.

TRANSMIT – initiate the oily signal – RECEIVE – initiate the dream frequency – INDUCE VOMITING IF SWALLOWED – initiate embalming protocol – WITNESS – The Ankh.

What is time to us? We stand outside. A romantic thing is about to happen nearly four thousand years ago. Romance to us, sweetling, but our sense of beauty follows a different aesthetic than yours.

The hooked needle enters the nose, like a lusty, lusty proboscis. It pierces the brain and stirs the grey. All memories commingle in a swirling stew. The soup! The soup! It all flows out. A mummy leaves little to tempt the worm.

Initiate the now.

A new romance blooms. Dr Klein, the ever-studious, sits with the mummies in the dusty dark, studying a black fluid he calls the Filth. It has gone by names he is not cognisant of – the Devouring Plague, the Zero-Point Pathogen, the Blackworm Jism. Daily he microdoses the ebony liquid, at first via syringe, but soon he holds the droplets in his hand, cooing until it slithers up his nose with a lusty slurp. It pierces his brain, stirs his grey. The soup! The soup!

 O, Dr Klein, Dr Klein – we are the only ones to sing his screeching ballad. Would you like to hear it, sweetling?

Go to the desert’s edge – to the Valley of the Sun God – to the cliffs – through a gap in the stone. An Orochi excavation camp – empty – high tech equipment hastily abandoned. The recent earthquake uncovered that which should be forgotten – an ancient temple of unusual shape. Guttural sounds come from within. Without, a jackal cackles the hymn of madness.

Enter the Ankh.

Initiate the secret histories.

What is time to us? We stand outside. Everything has happened. Everything is happening. We smell the brick oven of the desert and the gelid funk of aeons, and we are there.

Akhenaten made his first pilgrimage here. On this spot, the Pharaoh commands his slaves to dig, hundreds of lives lost delving for his god. Through shafts and passages in bedrock deep, they reach bottom, as cold as the space between stars, the walls and floor slimed with oily water. The cult of Aten is born from this black-jellied quim of earth.

“Be this the condensed breath of my god,” Akhenaten says of the black water. “Harvest it!” A temple is built, so that all may bathe in the ichorous breath of Aten. A pulley system is installed to extract the dark matter below. The baptismal fluid evaporates in the desert air, so ceremonies are conducted underground.

The black water invokes visions during sermons. Embalmers use it to ensure a cultist’s service is as eternal as the sun god. Undead cats savage slave children to the musical laughter of the Pharaoh.

Time passes – first in a trickle and then in a gush. The City of the Sun God grows. The black water flows thicker, the visions stronger, the deformities more severe. The holy fluid, now a tar, flows upward on alien gravity – a living thing – choking passageways in rivulets and tendrils – a crawling chaos.

Some grotesques out-grotesque all and can no longer be endured. The Marya, the Young Warriors, descend on the valley, footfalls sound as cleansing rain. They gift the Aten cultists with the mercy of slaughter. The new Pharaoh commands that the temple be sealed, the entrance to the hollow collapsed. The black water recedes. The darkness waits, monsters skulking in its belly, moaning for their god.

Initiate the now.

Digital devices beep for Orochi employees who will never answer. Dr Klein came with the team as an archaeologist. They found the Filth. They found horrors. They found things less easy to define – machines of warped bone and sinew – voices that are not voices that sing lullabies that will eat you in the dark.

Lullu-lallay, sweetling.

The Filth has dried, but flows again since recent events. Urgent – cross-reference with Tragedy in Tokyo!

Dr Klein, the ever-studious, still diligently studies and experiments, and the dead are ever so much more cooperative. He works with the mummified clay, and now great Melothat walks the halls as titanic as a plague.

Dr Klein takes his medicine daily, tiny doses of Filth. He fancies himself immune, but there is no immunity to the slime that flows along ninety-nine dimensions his science cannot see. Dr Klein is part of the soup. Now he is more, and now he is less. He has plumbed depths you cannot possibly fathom. His skull is a tentacular snow globe.

Shake it, sweetling! Shake it!

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7 thoughts on “The Secret Lore – The Ankh

  1. It sucks hard that Funcom is in such trouble right now. 😦

  2. Aye. I hope they will find a good investor, whereas “good” includes not intending to make massive changes to TSW. After all, according to all info available, TSW is one of Funcoms products which actually is making money and thus has chances to survive.

    And in ” I haven’t been inside, but I have discovered the first remnants of Dr Klein’s research nearby the entrance.”: you were unable to find a group? Or you did not try to find one? This dungeon is quite fun to run, at least in the lower difficulties. (I’ve done it a few times in nightmare difficulty, but it was stressful. )

    • Nah I gave up trying to find a dungeon group after the Polaris.

      • Strange. You really didn’t find people? How did you try to find a group? Or at what timezone do you play? For i indeed also noticed that when it’s quite late at night, i also don’t manage to find dungeon groups, as the population is low at that time.

        Some pointers:
        – The LFG tool for a long time was not really used. Yesterdays patch changed that thing significally, maybe it’ll now be better.
        – The channels Noobmaares and Sanctuary are where you really easily and quickly find helpful people.
        (Command /chat join Sanctuary and enable it in the chat and off you go. )
        – With the new changes of daily challenges, which include doing elite dungeons, it should now be quite easy to find people who want to get a group for elite difficulty. (And if you are in QL9/10 gear, you are ready to go for elite difficulty. )

        With the exception of unusual daytime (or rather nighttime) i didn’t really experience problems in finding a dungeon group yet. Of course, i also do a lot with people of my cabal, but we have a tendency to fill up our group with people from Noobmares. (We prefer Noobmares to the normal LFG, of course we run the “risk” of getting lower geared and inexperienced players, but we don’t mind that. At the same time, people from Noobmares are generally more relaxed and less elitist than of the official LFG channel. )

        Most recent example, yesterday evening when we did the new Issue 12 dungeon in elite difficulty. We had two people from outside of the Cabal along. Of course we did plenty of wiping (the dungeon came out yesterday and nobody knew the mechanics yet), but we managed to finish it. 🙂

        Last not least, if you need a hand for dungeons, feel free to contact me. (Ingame name: Slad) Not all times when i am on i can be of assistance (e.g. Sunday evenings my group of friends traditionally does some hours of wiping in the Penthouse nightmare dungeon, we’re just not good enough yet and Monday evening i have to be at my girls show in the Albion theatre) but when i have time, i am ready to help, so feel free to contact me. 🙂

      • And an update: The new challenge system includes challenges to do dungeons in Elite difficulty. This means that highly geared people now also rush into elite dungeons again, many of them are ready to take beginners along. For example in the elite dungeon we did yesterday, we had one player in QL4/5 gear along, who had the order to need on everything, as he’s the only one who will be able to make good use of this gear any more. (And yes, we beat the dungeon without any wipe and even without any death. )

        So getting a dungeon group has become easier than ever. Enjoy. 🙂

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