Forums

Vampyres, Demons, and Prayer

Quick find code: 341-342-901-65581312

of 4
Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Your solemn trek through the Wood is interrupted by a distant clamor in the trees.

Ever prepared, you draw your sword with an icy ring and quickly assess your surroundings. Only silence follows. Your heart leaps into your throat as you make out a strange form in the shadows. It does not move, though it appears to be observing you.

You point the blade in its direction, your breathing quickened and anxious. "Show yourself!" you command.

With little warning, a feral, gibbering creature lunges at you from the darkness. You parry its attack and thrust the pommel of your sword into what appears to be its head.

The beast lurches forward, reeling from your sudden blow. It turns to you and looses a terrible cry. In the moonlight, its grotesque form is revealed to you: a hunched, pale-skinned monstrosity with ears that jut out far past its puny head. From its lanky arms extends a leathery, wing-like membrane, and its hands appear to be more claw than finger. Fiery red eyes glare at you hatefully as it bares its teeth through its narrow, bat-like maw.

From the folds of your cloak you produce a simple, silver star of four points. You lift it into the air, the chain drawing about your neck, and rebuke the creature: "Saradomin's light compels you, foul thing! Flee this place!"

The vampyre recoils from you, raking its claws along the frame of its gaunt face. It lets out a wretched shriek as you approach it, star held high. With your foe so disarmed, your blade strikes true -- straight through the heart.

With a final, sickening gasp, the vampyre molders before you into a mound of black ash.


====================================================

Greetings.

The above describes a phenomenon that has absolutely nothing to do with Saradomin's power.

Interested?

Keep reading, then. This thread will attempt to explain the relationship between holy instruments and creatures of the lower realms.

Strap in, folks ;)
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:37 - Last edited on 06-Mar-2015 17:12:03 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Table of Contents

Post 1 - Introduction
Post 2 - Table of Contents (you are here!)
Post 3 - Prayer Theory
Post 4 - Grace, Anima of the Dead, and Ectoplasm
Post 5 - Vamp**ium and Infernus: Part I
Post 6 - Vamp**ium and Infernus: Part II
Post 7 - Saradominism, Terragard, and Prayer
Post 8 - Zarosianism and Prayer
[Incomplete]

Post 9 - Conclusion and Ramifications
Post X - Alternative Explanations
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:42 - Last edited on 05-Mar-2015 23:47:16 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Prayer Theory

It surprises me that Prayer is one of the least discussed points of interest in RuneScape lore. We often find ourselves nowhere else but knelt in quiet supplication before an altar to our god(dess), just before leaping into certain peril. This skill, for nearly every one of us, is as necessary as the weapons we wield.

NPC's believe Prayer Power (henceforth known as "grace" for the purposes of this thread) to be a sort of power granted to us by the gods. We, as players, know differently.

Jagex, as far as I am aware, has handed down no official ruling on just how exactly prayer works. They have suggested, on a number of occasions, that it functions as a form of mystical ancestor worship -- or even necromancy. This appears to have become the general sentiment towards the essential mechanisms of the Prayer skill and will be the basis for my theory.

To better explain the relationship between the nasties and Prayer as a skill, I will give you a brief summary on 1.) how we as mortals obtain grace through training, and 2.) just how this grace works for us in combat.

And, for the sake of clarity, I will draw a clear distinction between grace and prayer:

•Prayer is the physical act of invoking spirits, gods, or higher powers to our aid.
•Grace is a measure of these spirits' assistance. This is quantified into Prayer Points. "Prayer Points" just simply do not sound as appealing... ;p

As we bury the bones of our fallen foes and comrades alike, we are, in some fashion, gaining their favor. This favor is later returned in the form of grace, or prayer power, as we (often unknowingly) invoke these spirits in combat. Such assistance can have a number of benefits: enhanced combat skill, supernatural protection, and even fiery retribution, should we die.

My headcanon allows that spreading the ashes of demons also rewards you with power, but from the residual energies of the slain demon rather than the souls of the dead.
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:46 - Last edited on 05-Mar-2015 02:32:19 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Grace, Anima of the Dead, and Ectoplasm

We know from our Prayer meters that this grace can be measured and depleted like any other resource. There must be, then, some way to contain or cultivate this energy.

I propose that the Ectofunctus and a blessed holy symbol are effectively one and the same.

Consider that, when a mortal dies, they are sometimes snared in the torment of their final moments as ghosts if and/or because they are unable to pass on. Here, they become a tangible manifestation of their own life-force, or ectoplasm, if you will. The final, immutable state of a mortal's soul congeals into this form, forever replaying the final moments of his or her life.

This is the anima of the dead -- our ancestors. It's preciousness derives from its rarity.

Now, grace is not drawn solely from walking, talking ghosts. Do not misunderstand me. Ectoplasm is simply a form that the anima of the dead can take. More often than not, the souls of the dead descend unimpeded into the underworld of their plane of origin, whence we receive our grace.

There's a point here somewhere.

The Ectofunctus is a pool of that infamous ghost-slime which composes all spirits. It must be, therefore, that this ghastly font is a concentration of stayed, tortured souls. Or, you know, a giant, glowing toilet. I prefer the former :p

Imagine holy symbols of Saradomin and holy water to be vessels for this anima of the dead. When a priest prays over the symbol and the water, they suddenly change in quality. It now has the ability to harm (or at the very least, weaken) both demons and vampyres. So what changes? With the current theory of Prayer calling upon the spirits of the dead, it stands to reason that you are charging your symbol with this grace, or aid from the ancestors. This is not unlike the pool at Port Phasmatys -- the only real difference is that the spirits that aid you are willing.

Note that vampyres avoid both the Ectofunctus and holy symbols where possible.
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:49 - Last edited on 02-Mar-2015 06:05:09 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Vamp**ium and Infernus: Part I

Having dispensed with the notion that gods are responsible for this boon, we are encouraged to ask further questions on the nature of Prayer. If our gods do not protect us from demons and vampyres, what power is really at work here? What mystical force harms these creatures so particularly? All in due time, but first...

What is it about vampyres and demons that make them so allergic to these holy implements? Is it biological? Is it spiritual? Do they simply see the truth that is Saradomin's wing-ripping, city-stomping, defying World Guardian frying personality and are physically harmed in the presence of anything associated with him?

If anything, I believe it is a spiritual aversion to the anima of the dead. In this theory, there exists a distinction between this specie of anima and the concept of grace, but this distinction is irrelevant when it comes to harming demons and/or vyrekin. Thus, these terms will be used interchangeably.

Where does this aversion come from?

Well...

Infernus and Vamp**ium are broken, wretched worlds nearly entirely devoid of life.

Further, their inhabitants do not appear to have souls.

Somewhat recently, we've received a plethora of information regarding demon physiology. From these sources we can conclude that it is rather unlikely that demons have souls or an afterlife. They leak energy, much like the Mahjarrat, and will explode upon death -- also like the Mahjarrat. J-mods have discussed the possibility of a Mahjarrat afterlife and generally feel that it may not be possible, as, in their view, Mahjarrat may not have souls. Their anima (and with it, their souls), as we all know, is absorbed into the other Mahjarrat present during a Ritual of Rejuvenation.

Now, if original vampyres like Vanstrom Klause act like a Mahjarrat, fight like a Mahjarrat, and explode like a Mahjarrat, chances are they are also soulless like a Mahjarrat.

But where am I going with this?
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:53 - Last edited on 05-Mar-2015 02:33:33 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Vamp**ium and Infernus: Part II

I feel that Vamp**ium and Infernus, lacking an underworld or afterlife, may be the reason for these creatures' aversion to the anima of the dead, or grace (which is, essentially, the anima of the dead come to aid the invoker.)

We can observe this in our own world. Creatures that exist in caverns without light are incredibly sensitive to it. Similarly, abyssal fish cannot exist above certain pressure ranges -- they also literally explode (HEADCANON: ANGLERFISH ARE SOULLESS TOO!). Lack of certain stimuli in an environment often results in a weakness to these same stimuli upon introduction.

I believe that this spiritual allergy to ectoplasm, anima of the dead, and grace works differently for these two races. For instance, I believe the reaction to a charged holy symbol or a splash of holy water is much, much worse for vampyres than it is for demons.

Unfortunately, this theory has a gaping hole: demons are known to love to consume souls. So much so, in fact, that it has been said that eating souls for a demon is alike taking/doing drugs for us in the real world.

So how does this theory still hold?

We are aware, by this point, that anima comes in a vast array of flavors, ranging anywhere from Elder to Divine to personal to magical. We have also experienced firsthand the twofold aspects of just one type of anima: the energy of the Elder Twelve.

More specifically, the Stone of Jas allows the user to either draw on memories or siphon tremendous power from it. I do not believe it uses two types of energy, in this instance -- which leads me to believe that just one type of anima can be used for different purposes.

Of some interest to this theory, the demons that eat souls do so for their knowledge (and, in some cases, their power).

So saying, I imagine souls to be something like spiritual fugu for those demons with an inclination for soul-devouring; it can be potentially disastrous for them if consumed incorrectly.
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 04:59:56 - Last edited on 02-Mar-2015 06:10:03 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Saradominism, Terragard, and Prayer

With all of this wild speculation about the anima of the dead, one can't help but wonder:

Why is it that Saradominist instruments are (seemingly) the only effective vessels for vampyre and demon hunting?

A more cynical answer would be that this is simply an archaic game mechanism of 5th Age RuneScape. As such, it may or may not be subject to change. A retcon would serve to clear up much of the mystery of the Prayer skill.

From a lore perspective, I can see a number of reasons for why Saradominist holy water and holy symbols would hold such power against the denizens of Infernus and Vamp**ium. You see, it all goes back to Terragard...

Our legacy is far-reaching, our origins nearly forgotten. At some point after his ascension, Saradomin began to populate the universe with the seeds of humanity. It is not much of a stretch of the imagination to infer that many cultures have risen from our interplanar diaspora. Short-lived as we are, we have learned to adapt to the multiverse's equally diverse environments.

But many of us return to one of two afterlives: Valhalla or the Grim Underworld.

Terragardians -- we humans -- are a ubiquitous and varied race. We have even been described at one point as the "rats of the multiverse." Such a prolific people must have an extensive lineage. Which, as I'm sure you've already guessed, fits in rather nicely with this theory.

Human prayer may just be the most powerful type of prayer by race in the multiverse. Why is it that we are so given to worship, as one may discover in the Monastery of Ascension? I believe it has much to do with the mysticism of our race -- consequence of the passing of our many brethren.

Saradomin, in many ways, is the epitome of humanity, being that he himself was once human. He may serve as the nexus of human grace.

When one prays to Saradomin, one invokes the entirety of our race's spirits -- many of whom may have been his loyal followers.
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 05:00:00 - Last edited on 05-Mar-2015 22:00:56 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Conclusion and Ramifications

I admit here that this theory is not perfect. In many ways, it flies in the face of what we know of lore, particularly in regards to the interaction between demons and souls. I have attempted (with all of my feeble might) to plug these holes in my theory, but ultimately it's up to you, the reader, to draw your own conclusions.

I believe that this is an aspect of the game which warrants -- no, begs -- further explanation. This may not be the best answer to the mysteries of prayer and demons/vampyres, but it appears to be the only one.

Thank you for your time.

If you're still hungry for more juicy prayer discussion, consider these implications if, in fact, this theory holds true:

Last Prophet said:
Being that Mahjarrat have no permanent soul, do you think that they, too, have an aversion to souls of the dead?

And do you think that Necrovarus's intentions may be misunderstood? It's not exactly the kindest gesture to force an entire city into an undead state -- but what other option did he have? If this theory is true, they are no longer susceptible to blood tithing.
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 05:00:07 - Last edited on 05-Mar-2015 02:10:36 by Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Last Prophet

Posts: 3,421Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Alternative Explanations

Solanumtinkr said:
Drugs are all poisons to a certain extent and bad in large doses. Souls produce Anima but as are as different as stainless steel is from iron. So consuming souls need not produce the same reaction as . . grace(?) would.
-- Solanumtinkr, on the issue of soul-devouring demons

Edcy said:
Yes it does.
-- Edcy, on the Dharmic mysteries of the universe
+
Athonen Lucrendis
+

~Creator of
Ikadia the Exile

&
Saradomin's
last prophet
~

01-Mar-2015 05:00:12 - Last edited on 02-Mar-2015 05:51:17 by Last Prophet

Quick find code: 341-342-901-65581312Back to Top