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General interests: astronomy, hypothetical/alternative biochemistries, speculative evolution, military history, bizarre/creative/funny mods (specifically for Source/Valve games), animal rights, environmentalism

Favorite musicians/bands: Osamu Sato, Com Truise, Pigeon Girl, Skinny Puppy, CLARK, Radiohead, 2814, Lauren Bousfield, The Black Dog, MF Doom, Amon Tobin, DANGER, Boards of Canada, PilotRedSun

Favorite writers/authors: Nnedi Okorafor, Iain M. Banks, Ursula Le Guin

Favorite visual artists: Zdzisław Beksiński, Wayne Barlowe, H.R. Giger

Favorite Movies: Attack the Block (2011), Aliens (1986), Ghost in the Shell (1995), Dune (2021), Rango (2011), Parasite (2019), Avatar (2009), Blade Runner 2049 (2017), Daniel Isn't Real (2019), Annihilation (2018), Dr. Strangelove (1964), Elysium (2013), basically every Studio Ghibli/Hayao Miyazaki film but especially Nausicaa and Spirited Away

Favorite TV series: Star Trek (particularly DS9 and TNG), Darker than Black, Evangelion, Psycho-Pass, The X-Files

I'm Xavia Cytilinsk, and I am full of radiation, molten plastic, and incurable diseases not yet documented by science.

My primary creative focus since 2017 has been an animation project entitled "Path of Lauku". This is a reimagining of a sci-fi fantasy universe which I started writing and sketching ideas for starting back in 2009. I'm also working in tandem on a sequel which takes place in the same universe: "Gate of Lauku".

The central themes of this project are non-humanoid alien civilizations and the interactions between their cultures and distinguished individuals. Central inspirational sources for this project were the 2008 Maxis game Spore and its expansions and later on the Culture series by Iain M. Banks. James Cameron's Avatar and the first few games of the Halo franchise were also major influences.

Latest Journal

Seventeen Majestic Burning Columns

An old-growth vessel was undergoing soul implantation on the day that Aelfaun Sungaris first visited the orbital docks of Gantenskue. The term “dock” was used loosely here, as to a visiting Laujunderitan they more resembled a twisted, splaying network of tremendous insect nests and coral polyps. They had been a sight to behold as their shuttle approached the Ueptael coreworld, far more massive and notably more surreal than any orbital structures he had yet witnessed.

Gantenskue was by far the oldest of the Ueptael coreworlds, second only to their homeplanet itself. It had long been favored as a place of permanent residence because of its similar surface gravity and atmospheric composition to Aurhakualuetoh itself. It was notably a much wetter planet however, its plains of beige and copper all dotted with numerous salty lakes which constantly evaporated and reformed under the heat swells. Its air thus bore significantly higher humidity than most Ueptael had once been used to. Its population had blossomed over the centuries to a relatively immense ten billion, with technological exports having long since become its largest enterprise, not the least of which were biosynthetic spacecraft.

Bia and Zelt-Ekari had accompanied Sungaris as he strode into one of the enormous, vaguely amphitheater-shaped spaces within one corner of the orbital network. The three had known eachother since they were all practically still kits. Fortune had favored the continuation of their friendships, and they had later found themselves leading the same defense fleet within and around the explored volume. In those days it was composed only of Lance of Mauntailo and the Krrhataur supported by a small flotilla of corvettes which resembled fatter, more aggressive versions of a common DSV.

Bia-Ekari smoked silently from an abnormally long filament pipe which smelt of spice and burning leaves. Occasionally she would lift a brow at unfamiliar aspects of biomechanical technology, of which there was much to be seen. Zelt-Ekari meanwhile seemed to grin impishly and chuckle at anything he found entertaining. At the moment he was amused by a passing swarm of small drones resembling luminous, tentacled sea animals. Meanwhile, a larger drone the size of a desk was escorting the three forward. Shaped like a circular mass of waxy gray tendrils which had been flattened and then mirrored against itself into a distorted X shape, it hovered a couple meters above and to the side of Sungaris. It resembled an abstract piece of art much more than it did any identifiable piece of technology, and that went for most of what the Ueptael created.

They approached the outermost lip of the amphitheater as the drone came to a halt and bobbed in the air once as it turned to face Sungaris and his companions. “The one in charge of your newly appointed old-growth unit can be found in row four, column fifty-seven of this bay, Aelfaun.” The drone chirped politely from its translation module.

“Ah, thank you.” Sungaris nodded at the wide strip of blue-green light on the drone’s front which he had only assumed was some sort of eye. The drone bobbed again and then arced high into the air before gliding off on its way to its next assignment.

The bay stretched out ahead and below them now, a multi-terraced crater over a kilometer across. The Ueptael liaisons who had first welcomed them to the orbital structure had given him a virtual map of the interior, and on his terminal’s screen it revealed the amphitheater to be just one of many dozens arranged upon a kind of circular plain. The ceiling was a series of thorny plates far above them which added to the impression of an enormous cave. The separate bays were cordoned off by divider walls perhaps ten meters high, each resembling a tremendous piece of petrified wood. Everything seemed to be rendered in rich tans and rusty reds, the colors of a grand desert. The divider walls split the different sections of this plain into a sort of city-sized maze. No wonder it had become necessary to utilize drone escorts just so visitors wouldn’t get hopelessly lost in here.

Most of the bay’s terraced interior was empty, but at the very center it was bustling with activity. Dozens of Ueptael engineers hurried about glistening clusters of complicated looking equipment. Translucent and flickering coils of biosynthetic tissue piled up in meters-tall formations around the amphitheater, accompanied by small towers composed of what looked like pulsating veins of slick glass. Sungaris only understood the basics of Ueptael engineering in abstract, and the precise functions of these various bizarre devices eluded him. He noticed a lone Ueptael standing in what had to account for the fourth row and probably fifty-seventh column of the bay some thirty meters from them. He turned and motioned for Bia and Zelt-Ekari to follow.

“Damnably idiotic, isn’t it?” The Ueptael’s translator spoke as the three Laujunderitans approached. They did not alter their position in any way to suggest that they took particular interest in their existence. It seemed more likely to Sungaris that the individual simply wanted to think out loud.

“What’s so idiodic?” Sungaris asked calmly.

“That.” The Ueptael struck the air with one of their bulbous chelae in the direction of the gathering at the center of the crater. “The entire circus of idiots below.”

Bia-Ekari tapped the display of her personal terminal and rotated her forelimb so that Sungaris could see it. It showed a personal profile headed by an image of a Ueptael with bushy crimson quills and skin of rough golds and tans, identical to the individual standing beside them now. They had found the person they had been sent here to collect. Sungaris nodded at her before turning back to the Ueptael.

“You mean they uh… soul implantation process as it’s called?” Sungaris questioned further.

“Implantation…” The translator which the Ueptael wore around the base of their trunk spoke with a synthesized sneer. “Of course, implying that the original souls of the people who volunteer for this shit aren’t lost to oblivion, rather that they are conveyed into a ‘higher state of being’. For nearly two millennia everyone has subscribed to this nonsense like it was some kind of cosmic law.”

The Ueptael popped the sphincter-like lid open on a spiraled tube full of some variety of purple gel-food and began to noisily suck up its contents with one of their two proboscises. Being liquivores, everything this species consumed was some variety of nectar, juice, gel, or something in between. Aelfaun Sungaris noticed some three or four Ueptael at the very center of the gathering were being escorted into strange looking harnesses with tall, upward branching antennae like wild coral growths. Many of the engineers and technicians around them were beginning to halt their work and observe this smaller group as though witnessing an event of some significance.

“Perhaps you need to travel to the Laujunderitan sectors of the Explored Volume more often.” Sungaris suggested. “Many- if not most- of the Laujunderitans I know still refuse to even accept the existence of a soul, at least in the sense of a consciousness independent of a body. Since your implantation processes were first demonstrated to our researchers, many still refer to them as a form of emergent intelligence. Merely the imprint of a once-living person.”

The gold and crimson Ueptael loudly expelled nitrogen from their muscular spiracle ports, their equivalent to either a forced laugh or a pained groan. “So a Laujunderitan has a better understanding of what’s happening here, and your people have never even dared to fuck around with this kind of technology so far. Yet, these people still don’t know what they’re really doing. One minute they’re standing here being congratulated on their promotions, the next we’re left with two to six lifeless shells and an entity which believes itself to be their combined consciousness. Total nonsense.”

A large swath of the spiny plates directly above the amphitheater’s center began to shift and roll away from a central point. This revealed a glistening tunnel which extended up into the ceiling like the interior of a tremendous throat, its moist surface riddled with glowing runes which emitted a harsh pink light. An oblong construct some five hundred meters long with a silvery and mottled surface descended from this strange airlock and came to rest only a few meters above the central platform where the engineers and technicians had already congregated. After a moment Sungaris recognized this construct for the central hull of an old-growth vessel, having apparently detached from its superstructure so that it would fit inside the bay. It looked rather naked without the iconic mass of branching wings around it. The detached core made very little noise for something so massive and unquestionably powerful.

“They do volunteer for this process, correct?” Sungaris asked after a minute. “They train for decades in preparation for this event, at least so I’ve heard. If they must prepare themselves for it so intensively, then it follows that they understand that life as they know it will come to an end?”

“That only makes it all the worse…” The Ueptael replied bitterly. “Not only do they hurl themselves gleefully into the abyss, but all of society has come to accept it unquestionably as well. It’s like some kind of fatalist cult out of a horror story, except this one only grows stronger the more people that know about it. And by the way they drink up this hype so hungrily, you’d think it was the sweetest fucking nectar anyone had ever tasted.”

The Ueptael tossed their emptied beverage tube forcefully and it landed somewhere on the bumpy convolutions of the floor far below. A small service drone shaped like a conical seashell whizzed past and paused to sniff at the discarded item with an extended tendril. It grasped the empty tube and shoved it into a waste receptacle on its side before quickly gliding away. Meanwhile, an array of what looked like thick, orange tree trunks were extending from the underbelly of the old-growth core, likely facilitating the implantation process and obscuring much of the scene from view. The Ueptael next to him snorted out more nitrogen.

“You seem to have at least half a brain somewhere inside your fleshshell.” The Ueptael finally addressed Sungaris more-or-less directly. “What did you say your name was?”

“Ah, I am Roqkuvski Kua Sungaris. I’m the Aelfaun who will be working with you in the Ijiliceen Cluster, starting today.”

The Ueptael’s mask-organ swiveled towards Sungaris and his two companions with a blunt sense of curiosity, the same way a Laujunderitan might turn to eye a particularly noisy insect. “Indeed you are. I wondered when you might show up.”

They turned back and took a half stride which tilted their body marginally towards the position of the three Laujunderidans. “My short-name is Seventeen Majestic Burning Columns. Buy me enough drinks, and someday I might tell you the full story behind it.”

Sungaris smiled subtly as Zelt-Ekari emitted another of his juvenile snickerings in response behind him. “I will look forward to that occasion.”

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  • Link

    Hi there buddy! Nice to see more content of yours!

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      Likewise!! I'll be posting some older stuff for now but I'm trying to get back into the animation process too.

  • Link

    Thank you for the follow! O:
    Have one back! ^^

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    Happy Birthday, dude!

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      Thank you so much! I'm old.... 0 ___ 0

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        Not really... you're literally a year and a half older than me.

        Trust me, we'll both only have a right to say that 20 years from now.