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Cursed – The damned of Kethu

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The Cursed are a smorgasbord of different traits. Some are trapped within the body of a hideous beast. A handful have been turned into inanimate objects and await their release through some means or another. Others have had their internal personalities manifested into external appearances. There are even those who are forced to never come above the crashing waves of the Encircling Sea. The Cursed are by far the most physically varied of the 9 races.

Every Cursed is different, but as they procreate, they pass on their unique traits to their offspring. Many have mistakenly believed that all wolfmen are from the same litter due to this, a fact that has cost a few people their lives.

Due to the removal of a lot of emotional constraints, most Cursed are considered monsters. As such, most of the encampment, villages or communities of Cursed are often times hidden away, trying to live out their lives as best they can, or hunt those who live near by. It’s a mixed bag, really.

Within Kethu’s plane, Cursed benefit from a sort of ceasefire between themselves. Not wanting to further vex their Goddess, all Cursed know that within the Goddess’ realm, all hostilities between themselves must cease or the Goddess may grant them additional ‘gifts’.

Cursed are direct, logical and often only concern themselves with their own well-being. Among Kethu’s plane, the Cursed that live there are often cold, calculating and scheming. They are unlikely to help anyone unless it benefits them and they will gut someone for their gold if they think they can get away with it – a reason why most people do not trust Cursed.

Some who receive Kethu’s embrace lose their minds, reverting to twisted beasts that do not want for anything but what is before them. Some are twisted into a gold-hoarding lizard, while others may be changed into a beautiful flower that traps people because they wish to be smelled.

Almost all Cursed are sociopaths. Only those that have been alive long enough have begun to renew their conscience, and those whose conscience are likely incredibly sorrowful for their acts, let alone their invocation of the Great Curse.

Many know that Kethu was the last God to come to Alteria. So indecisive was Kethu that her form never solidified when it entered through the Oculus.

Shifting endlessly, Kethu found herself upon a plain, uninteresting flat surface. Kethu was unimpressed, so she made the rocks to liquid and the liquids to rocks, but this became boring to the Goddess soon after.

She tore through the ground and made twisted creatures that knew not what they were or what to do. They twisted where they shouldn’t, grew within themselves and expired.

Bored with Alteria, Kethu tried to leave through the Oculus but found that the strange pull of Alteria prevented her from leaping through the orb.

Furious, Kethu sprouted long limbs and tried to bound through the Oculus, only to collide with it and cause it to explode. Shattered, the Oculus radiated small points of light through the void. Beautiful light that played different colours as the fractured Oculus spun in the dark nothing above Alteria.

Kethu was confounded. She told her brothers and sisters that they were trapped upon this changeless, completely boring plane of dirt, rocks and light. None of them seemed to notice Kethu’s plight and all of them dismissed the shifting God, telling her to ‘shape up’.

Kethu retreated to her plane of pointed light. She thrashed and screamed. She built entire mountainsides and turned them to clouds in her rage. In her fury, she morphed her entire plane into a twisted mirror of her confusion.

It was after her tantrum that Kethu finally realized her true plight. She watched through the various points of light, the other planes. How the other Gods played with their creations and their strange little creatures. She wanted some, but none would come to her twisted world. So she set out to the other planes in secret.

Hidden within an ever shifting cloak, Kethu wandered the other Planes, listening to the words of the inhabitants. Some would speak of virtue and hope. Others would speak of vengeance and despair.

Kethu found some of the creatures of Ith’Ir who were fighting over a swine that was across some kind of border. A trifle thing, but the two’s essence were frothing with hatred.

As the two argued, their essence began to bubble from within and in a rage-fueled moment, one wished the other would be a pig and said so aloud.

Kethu gleefully obliged the man who had offered up this essence to her, twisting the man of the requester’s ire into bipedal swine. Terrified, the swineman took to the hills.

Kethu watched as the other man laughed at the misfortune of his rival, happy to have rid himself of such a despicable creature. Kethu approached the man and offered him to join her. After all, she had granted his wish.

The man insulted Kethu and stepped away from the Goddess. Furious with the creature for not even thanking her for granting his wish, Kethu twisted the man into a legless snakeman.

The new scalekin fled in fear of the Goddess. So distraught was Vula/Kethu with her failure to gain followers that she slinked back to her twisted plane. She remained there in silence for a time until she was stirred by someone bumping into her.

Twisting one eye, Kethu spied a small being whose face was covered in bandages.

“Kethu -” the creature said the Goddess’ name, which made the Goddess rise from her slumber.

“I have heard you turned a man into a swine and another into a snake for their grievances. I have stumbled to your realm to ask that you restore my sight!” Said the young, pitiful thing.

Kethu was confused by the request. “Why would I do such a thing, creature?” The Goddess asked in a huff as the small thing smiled at the Goddess.

“Because then, I could see your greatness.” Kethu was shocked by the little things words. With little pause, her hands wrapped about the creature and undid his essence before remaking him.

She was not entirely sure how Ith’Ir had modified the creature before her, but she decided to make improvements while she was at it. Before her stood a boy with eyes, hooves and fur. He peered at her and smiled at her constantly shifting form.

“Thank you, Goddess. Now I can see.” Said the boy as Kethu gleefully held up a mirror to the boy’s face.

“I have given you better legs, my child! To go with your new eyes!” The Goddess was overjoyed as the boy looked at his lower half in disbelief.

“But this is not what I wanted, my Goddess. I only wished for my sight to return.” The boy was distraught, but Kethu smiled her endless teeth at the child.

“It is alright, child. I have removed your worry, so now you will not begrudge my decision. I have removed your fear so that you will not run from me and I’ve removed your disgust so that you understand my beauty.”

The boy was silent for a while before he nodded. “Thank you, my Goddess. I shall go forth and tell all of those I meet about your greatness and about your generosity.”

So the boy went forth, telling all those about the great gifts given by the Shifting Goddess. He warned them of their pact, but told them that whatever they wished could be made real, for a price.

Those who wanted vengeance, restoration, wealth, love and a plethora of other things flocked to Kethu’s realm and one by one, were remade them into such strange and wonderful things – devoid of fear, hopelessness and worry. A twisted gift from the formless mother.

Unique Traits:
Cursed are all strange creatures. Some can be killed naturally, by removal of the head, while others require a specific ritual be performed to unmake them. It depends on the manner of the curse that was used to create them in the first place. If a Cursed is born, they carry with them their own unique weakness.

Due to this, one must always be careful when dealing with a Cursed.

For example, a Cursed who wished to kiss her one true love may be changed into a hideous creature until her lips meet with her one true love. All those whom she found to not be her true love would be warped into monstrosities devout to her that would bring even more would-be bachelors to her den.

To kill this creature, you may need to have her kiss herself – a feet deemed almost impossible, or you may have to find her the true love she seeks so that Kethu’s gift could be lifted.

A Cursed killed in the wrong way will have its essence reconstitute itself in Kethu’s Plane. While this sounds like a wonderful benefit, Kethu is never sure how she put together the Cursed in the first place. A Cursed could find himself suddenly more cat than man or perhaps have a crab-claw for a hand.

Eventually, a Cursed could be so twisted that it resembles more Kethu than whatever it was before. A constantly shifting, blubbering mass of teeth, eyes and tentacles. A fate most Cursed would rather suffer death than have to endure.