Move along, not ready to see yet.
Should be useful for other Hour writers to get a general idea about the Maw.
|Names||The Maw Consuming|
|Date of arrival||Unknown|
"In it's dominion, the Maw's law is the only law. It emanates from the bones of primordial jungles, and enforced with every shedding of blood. It is fulfilled through the killing and incorporation of something greater. To leave it unfulfilled is to break the law, and that is it's own punishment."
The Maw has only entered the Mansus once, during the war of hungers. It's loss was swift, more to internal strife than the challenges of assault. that it was shown mercy for its transgressions surprised the Maw most of all, though it was no less grateful for the chance.*
- consider more before using in full article. a good piece only works in the right puzzle.
The Maw was first found in the forest amongst a jungle grove. It's date of arrival is unknown, but it's strong ties to the forest suggest it came with the forest. The Maw has only left the forest for the mansus once, and only to forge its pact.
- The Maw Consuming is beholden to its pact, and following one too many murderers bumbling into the mansus proper, is now responsible for any actions they get up to in the mansus. There are loopholes, but booing and jeering individuals lurking near or around the mansus entrances into entering the forest only worked so many times before the residents caught on.
Its tarot card is The Hermit.
The Maw Consuming has no earthly form, and has not gained one throughout it's dominion of the woods. If it ever did, it might be considered the first host the Maw claimed. The first mortal to enter the mansus even, for the pact was not yet made. However, who or what this mortal was is known only to the Maw Consuming, and it's lineage of claimants-turned-hosts.
Blood and thunder! Hunter and Prey! Killer and Killed! The Maw Consuming embodies these, and demands the world takes heed.* It lives in the jungle, but its true home is in the heart of thieves, murderers, brigands. Every killer is welcome in the Maw's dominion, but only those truly dedicated Hunters will ever eat from the Maw's table. All else is waste or sloth, dulled blades of no use to anyone.
- (FnordNote: Alternative phrasing: takes note? remembers?)
The battle-roars of the lion, the hungry howls of wolves! These and more are the only praise needed, gratitude offered in subconscious thanks to the great hunger! The Maw needs no "real" worshipers, no simpering sycophants begging for scraps. The Maw finds such beings distasteful at best, or committers of a most grave offense at worst. How could this not be so when the Maw's law is one followed by most every beast under the sun? In this the Maw Consuming's most dedicated followers might not even be religious at all, much less having heard of the Mansus. And to the Maw's "followers", it is a surprisingly lenient Hour. It never asks anything of it's followers, and it's follower never ask the Maw for anything. If one needs something from the other, they simply take it. If they can.
- The Fang-Gild Club.
- FNORD/"Not really serious about serving the Maw. Mostly in it for the longevity, really. Doesn't hurt that hunting others in the Forest makes for fine sport, either."
- The Clawblunters
- FNORD/"Somewhere between trying to cheat the Maw's "system" and taking the Maw just serious enough. Have I said FNORD already? This one is especially FNORD and likely won't be in the article proper. Probably not a Bureau front."
- Young Teeth Club/Sparkling Ivory Club/FNORD
- FNORD/"A club of backstabbers, murderers, and all manner of violent individual. Less a club and more a bar serving a proper rogues gallery. Probably has a score-board to tally victims, not to mention the stories they trade here."
The Maw's marks recognize ones dedication to the hunt, a notch on an arm or leg. Focus of sight and strength of bone. A straightness of posture and sharpness of teeth. So long as your dedication to the survival of the fittest remains true, you will never dull. Falter in your faith, and you will find yourself on another Hunter's menu.
- First Mark: “First Blood”
- “I have claimed my first kill, and with it my place at the grounds is earned.”
- Second Mark: “Well-Seasoned Veteran”
- “I have hunted my betters, and joined their numbers. Humid atmospheres have ceased bothering me.”
- Third Mark: “Poacher”
- “I have hunted my betters, and joined their numbers. My teeth are sharper, my nails hardened.”
- Fourth Mark: “FNORD"
- “I have hunted my betters, and joined their numbers. The urge to consume has taken root.”
- Fifth Mark: “Seasoned Veteran
- Sixth Mark: “FNORD"
- Seventh Mark: “By Maw Consumed”
- “My hungers have reached a glimmering peak, I can see the Maw itself on the horizon. My knives were prepared for this moment.”
Old Long-tooth FNORD
The Bottlesmiths FNORD
Wotif, Third to the Table FNORD The First Host/The First Maw (Formerly) "And lo, blessed be the name of the first herald, the first grindstone to sharpen our claws and force us to rise ever higher."
- The First Host is long since deceased, in the manner expected of all hosts of the Maw Consuming. As the Mawsoleum was yet to be established, it is believed all traces of the First Host were long since lost. Still, between the force binding an hour to a mortal, and that mortals legacy, there is a great deal of speculation and rumor as to their identity. Were they man or beast? Ape or bird or fish or fly? Each mortal portrays the first host as a hollow silhouette of their species, with a glimmering ball of light floating over their bloody stump of a neck. Even amongst those yet to be the Maw's children, there may be carvings scraped into wood or stone with hooves, talons or whatever they have to work with.
- As for the practical occultist applications, the memory of the maw's historical bond with the first host, the legacy of that host, and the numerous stories and general interest into their history has led to the existence of a peculiar gestalt of these things. It is not the true first host, though the Maw's children give it scraps from the table out of reverence. or pity. It's visage shifts constantly, flickering from moth to bird to worm to hound to whale, all in a matter of minutes. It is far more emaciated than the myths would portray, and it's head is a dim coal shakily floating over a scabbed stump. Gaunt and elongated, it's limbs twitch and jitter as it moves. It is a small mercy to the eyes that when summoned, it's species stays that of its summoner. It is not terribly helpful to summon in and of itself, (unless one wishes to have their entire larder picked clean in a matter of minutes,) but it is a reliable way to garner the attentions of the Maw's Children.
The Maw's Children/Wildlings "...Twisted and bent of shape, the beasts walked as men, spoke as men, and tried to live like men. But they were not men, no matter how much fire they stole." The Maw's Children are not descendants by blood, but by actions. Once ordinary beasts of the world, something burned in them for more, to strive towards a higher calling. To grow strong, and steal the fire Prometheus gave mankind, and once stole himself from the sun. Their changes would only begin fully once they had fulfilled the Maw's Law, and killed something equal, something greater. And at that moment their gruesome transfiguration would begin; in all it's wretched glory. Bones snapping and shifting, organs rearranged, flesh burning as clay in a kiln. It would be agonizing, nevermind the fright of onlookers. But it would be swift, and soon the best crawling on four would stand tall on two. Most of these wretched creatures would find their way to the forest proper, soon after. They would fight (and live) in the forest as any other murderer of the Maw, striving ever higher like one as well. The remainder couldn't, or wouldn't handle the change, their minds stubbornly refusing to rise higher. Those would remain runts, living amongst their worldly homes. Think "Yeti" or your humanoid cryptid of choice.
- "Stymphalian Birds" Grail/Heart
- Wretched beasts, little more than mouths with wings stuck to their bloated carcasses. They once soared on glimmering wings, but sold their promise to better indulge their hungers. They were disinherited from the Maw's forest dominion, and hold no protection from the Pact. Would-be summoners are advised to take care, their loyalty lasts only as long as their bindings.
- The Forest
- The Halls of Skin
- The Maw neither partakes of taxidermy nor approves. Bested foes are to be summarily consumed, not stuffed and mounted as trophies. Nevertheless, even a devoured foe leaves traces. These are gathered, bottled, labeled, and neatly placed on shelves in unlit rooms. A select few are used as molds for flesh, to create a physical replica to fight and learn from time and time again.
- The Mawsoleum
- Here lay the remnants of former Maw’s, indexed and true. The remnants interred here are done so with the highest respect, and the greatest care. This is not the Halls of Skin, where predator and prey is placed for all manner of being to gawk at, but the closest thing the Maw’s have to “sacred”. It is the duty of each and every Maw, present and future, to maintain the Mawsoleum and ensure its contents safekeeping. This is not an eccentricity of the Maw Consuming, but rather a pragmatic decision. Each remnant stores the life and death of its former self, ready to be witnessed and studied time and time again. Thus, each new Maw might garner all the experience of old to fortify themselves against their predecessors downfalls.
- The Halls of Skin
- The Tables
- The Lesser Tables
- FNORD, lesser tables shared both in the forest and the mortal world between murderers. Tends to have good sherry and rum. Great stories, surprisingly difficult to find a seat.
- The Greater Table(s)
- FNORD, The Maw Consuming's table and other dining tables of import. The Maw's personal table has 41 seats, 39 for the Maw's children, one for the current Maw, and an honorary seat for the Maw Consuming itself left empty.
- The Lesser Tables
- Ivory Tablet
- As hours go, the Maw is incredibly lenient on allowing entrance to the forest. This tablet is given to those dreamers who meet the Maw's few requirements... But it is just as easily reclaimed should the dreamer fail to renew their bargain.
- Itching Hunger (Edge 2)
- Slight as cherries, sharp as thorns. Sweeter than wine and hints of iron. (This is a second order of influence)
- Gnawing Hunger (Edge 4, Grail 2)
- You shouldn't. You mustn't. You cannot eat hunger, though the taste is beckoningly sweet, you will always choke.
"A Slavering Text"
- Wildlings: Vak
- Text1: "Here are my children, numbered thirty-nine. Thieves, Warriors, Slaves and Saints. They strived for their place at my table, and at my table they dine."
- Text2: "Each of them were once a lowly beast, but clawed and strived and ripped fire from the hands of man. In doing so they proved themselves my children."
- The Storm-Tossed:
- The Spirarch: Neutral. The Spirarch oversaw the Maw's pact, and for that the Spirarch has the Maw's closest equivalent to gratitude it can muster.
- The Perennial:
- The Red Lady: Confused. Feels a vague sense of kinship, doesn't understand why. A gesture similar to a shrug is performed, and the Maw Consuming resumes it's prior endeavors.
- The Hunter/The Worm's Foundations: (A) good sport. Pity they won't join the Maw's hunters, but they are welcome at the Maw's table regardless. Not quite bloodthirsty enough for the Maw, but of all the hours in the Mansus the Hunter would make for the finest host.
- The Masquerade:
- The Bright Tapestry:
Uncertain. Has hints of something old, something primal. Familiar, yet?..Ignorance. The Maw doesn't pretend it understands the Bright Tapestry, and has concluded leaving it alone is probably fine.
- The Die Cutter: ??? Who is this? Why are they in my forest? Are they in my forest? Uncertainty, doubt. The Maw doesn't like this, but lacks the information to act. An hour? An elaborate prank? ?????
- The Mother Bear: Neutral, hesitant acquaintance. As part of the Maw Consuming's pact, the Maw ensures none of its murderers or other ruffians it brought to the forest enters the Mansus proper. As the Mother Bear guards the Mansus entrance proper, it was inevitable the two would meet. Has something of the Maw's Nature versus the Mother Bear's nurture going on.
- The Maw Consuming: The Maw isn't one for much introspection. Still, the Maw has yet to wholly dismiss the lingering gnaw of why they seek to perpetuate the cycle of hunter and prey. Perhaps the answer might be just around the bend, another perpetuation of the cycle away...
- The Succulent Glow: Peculiar vegetable. An ambitious individual, but a vegetable nonetheless. The Maw has been informed repeatedly the Succulent Glow is a fungus, but has yet to dignify them with proper taxonomy. Thinks their Sycophants go well with a honey-glaze and a slow-roast. The Pact may have limited the aquisition of such, but sometimes a Hunter might still find these rare truffles for the feast. The Maw Consuming has had their referral of the Succulent Glow's Sycophants as "truffles" pointed out to them. The Maw immediately denied any such thing, before commenting on how the chef did a wonderful job roasting the truffles that year. Whether the Maw Consuming is aware of this discrepancy is a favorite discussion-piece of the lesser tables.
- The Knife's Edge:
- The Warrior Maid: Kin. She is so close, so similar. But she just doesn't understand. Too busy enjoying death to remember why the Maw practices its survival of the fittest lifestyle. No matter, her armies provide good fodder for the Maw's murderers. Pity they aren't quite as easy to recruit from.
- The Ferric Brand:
- The Monument: "Who? Is this another example of 'art' like that more-opened one? Or is it like that dye-cutter thing?... Oh, this is an elaborate combination of the two into some new artpiece isn't it? Good show, good show..." -The Maw Consuming, not even the slightest understanding what it's talking about. Or who.
- The Cub: Bemused annoyance, formerly snack. The Pact only applies within the mansus, but an Hour is an Hour, even a weak one could carve through their murderers with ease. Still, the Maw Consuming begrudgingly acknowledges it's shared interest in personal growth.
- The Seraph: Vague Shrug. Doesn't really understand the Seraph, but can appreciate it's requests for solitude. Sometimes the Seraphs music is appreciated down in the forest, sometimes the forest residents wish the Seraph wasn't quite so thundering.
- Our Lady Betrayed:
- The Worm Funktastic: Befuddled annoyance. The Maw is a primitive hour, and has little understanding of music or any variety of art. What it does understand is that not all of its murderers die in the forest, that some vanish to the tune of a saxophone in the night.
- The Rotted Ox: Revulsion. The Maw understands the value of endings, but sees them as the foundation for new beginnings. A pause in song, a rest between hunts. The Rotted Ox's dedication to the end is a repulsive aberration to be denied.
- Our Lady's Resolve:
- The More-Opened: Vague Shrug. The Maw thinks it's an example of this "art" thing it hears about rather than an Hour proper. A well timed intervention prevented the Maw from attempting to offer it's vague ideas as to "this criticism thing", and souring Pact negotiations further.
- The Unending Worm: Neutral. The Maw has little reason to be involved with the Unending Worm directly, but does admire the Worms work ethic.
- The Clavier:
- The Shambling Dawn: ??? (The Shambling Dawn is too esoteric for the Maw. Puts on an impressive show, though.)
- The Fell-Feaster: Disappointed. Their dedication to hunger is admirable. Their being wholly consumed by said hungers is (a) shameful (disgrace).
Material here won't be directly transferred to the Maw's article proper. Will however be used for contemplating/storing material; either as ideas or future reference.
--"39 Children of the Maw"
- 39 was picked as a spur-of-the-moment whim. But coming up with an actual reason instead of brushing it over couldn't hurt.
- Who are the 39 children of the Maw? "Children" refers both to a family/house, and their honored ancestor.
- Specific names, though. One is the Bottlesmiths, but that still leaves 38 seats at the table.
- How are the children divided? Unnecessary, but arranging them into arbitrary groupings can look nice.
- Four groups of nine with a special table for three?
- The table wasn't always seating 39, had to be less at one point with more trickling over the centuries.
- How are new seats earned? Having the Maw Consuming give seats out semi-arbitrarily works, but a better reason would be preferred.
- 01 would be the earliest adopted "child" of the Maw, with later arrivals having higher numbers.
Filling in the entire list is hardly necessary at this time, but fleshing it out (at some point) would be good.
"Wotif", Gadfly. Third or Fourth to the table. Tormented victims by bombarding them with visions of what-ifs, could-bes, so on and so forth. Might not actually deserve to be at the table, but is a deft hand with a skewer.
05: "The Bottlesmith"/Bottle fly (Green?) [Year:????]
Todo [ ]Finish the Starving Ascetic [ ]Port more things to the full article [ ]Adjust text phrasing to fit intended tone. This Hour embodies survival of the fittest, the accumulation of strength to rise ever higher, and provide a bar to be surpassed. While amusing/suitable for jotting down notes, Cheery/Confused Elder isn't quite right.
Note: Not gone, just busy. More content soon.