Valiant: Knock Knock…The Hour Glass…THE ANCIENT MASTERS of Atlantis…

*song* “Standing in the Darkness” by Alias

Back and Forwards are all the Same.
They always seem to tell the same stories
On One Timeline…Until the Rhythm breaks
And lessons must be learned…Again?

History may navigate different eras,
But the attitudes always seem the same.
Is that the Nature of the Human race
Then? What is Time meant to tell?
The Light, the pulse…Varence blinked and
Winked and cocked his eyebrow. “To impart
A story must have some meaning, some
Intention…without that it’s useless. The
Best things learned are always timely…They
Have to be.” He grinned. “Maybe some
Things we shared were misread earlier…
They are all connected you know. We put
Them in order very carefully.”

“Please note he said…We.” Ceres added
Enthusiastically as she sat to his right
Elegantly sitting straight with her hands
Holding her knees.

Varence casually turned to her and cleared
His throat. “Before we begin…Ceres, may
I have a glass of water?”

She half turned to meet his eyes. “What
Are you asking me for? Of course you can…
Go get it yourself…am I your servant?
You cannot walk and talk at the same

A bizarre moment as their expressions exchanged…
Something. I’m not sure really what it was…but
It was funny to watch.

“Ah, never mind,” He smiled; was that a joke?
“Let’s begin…Remember, just write it
Simply…no excessive detail…”

“Oh…” Ceres smiled, she nearly laughed, “He
Said simply…RUN.”

He rolled his eyes…and then began…

“Back…roll it back again to the time. Back…
And here, on this world it was a different
Time, a lost age of civilizations. Words and
Schools had the same meaning then…they
Only want to delight in holding knowledge
Over others…what a prized perception…

But it was not like the world you know…
It was bright and shining with cities and
Manmade things everywhere, as far as the
Eye could see…Towns and estates did
Exist, but like the cities they caged nature,
Tamed it, fenced it and tried to erase
Its wildness as much as possible to make
Everything seem as controlled as possible…
Now ignore the aspects of their society,
Their culture…the different lands of the
People that spread across continents…
They varied as much as they do to your time
Currently…But they were as divided as
They were diverse…Their opinions, their
Physical characteristics pulled them in
Different directions, as much did their
Cravings…Their gender, and their desires.
Many worlds are like this however
Throughout the stars, remember that…For
Where there is life that builds civilization
There is always one thing…pride. And with
Pride, there are always those elite themselves
To control things.

But upon this world, in your long ago…
In the world you never knew…
There was a power unlike any present
On Earth. One that stood above the leaders
To aid and guide them…And fix their
Mistakes…It was called many names
With great reverence, but primarily known
As…The House of the Ancient Masters.

The Ancient Masters rose as an order
Of the best of men and women. They were
First taught by the Last of The Lion Men
That existed on Earth…
For those unfamiliar with The Lion Men,
Here briefly, I will tell you…They were a
Magnificent, powerful race of beings, resembling
More strongly Lions that you know but walking
On 2 legs…towering between 9 and 12
Feet Tall. Their race was eradicated by
The Dark Empire…Their women taken,
Removed and sterilized…Separation of the
Sexes is the first step of the Conquerors
In sabotaging a race…
But The Lion Men were majestic, in form
Of mind, body and spirit…possessing
Extraordinary psychic powers. They were
Noble and good…Far above the reckless
Hormonal indulgent humans of the First
Earth…And so they served as great
Counselors of virtue…They created the
First Temple Divine…A house of religious
Worship…one that respected Nature…They
Were very alone in their thinking then.
But The Lion Men saw great potential in
Humans, they always have…A story
For another time, but suffice to say it
Is a destiny of Two races Forever connected.

But as I said, The Lion Men saw great
Potential in humans…and so sought
To Teach humans, on the First Earth…Their
Ways of balance and living…to instill
A more noble belief system. They selected
The Best of the Best of human students
As apprentices…To become what
Would be called The Ancient Masters.

They selected human students that
Excelled in multiple talents…Art, Music,
Poetry…Those with insightful minds. Those
That were well shaped and of good
Physical skill…They had to be able to
Think and move with equal good measure.
The Lion Men were never fond of
Laziness or those that slept all the time.
Their beliefs were simple…And still are…
If you are going to be of value, then
You must demonstrate, possess and
Exercise great talents, great control and
Great virtue to become a Master.

And The House, or The Temple as it
Was also known, of the Ancient Masters
Became the very embodiment of this.
It existed and grew by the strictest
Of a code of ethics, no exceptions. They
Built their schools across the world…
Very separate from the cold urban
Fortresses of cities, and they kept
Their gates closed, and never let in
Anyone that strayed from their
Beliefs and teachings. The world saw
Them as far too elite, far too strict
And rigid…And yet they sought their
Counsel endlessly…For advice on all
Their problems. How interesting, don’t you

Over time, The House of the Ancient Masters
Grew and grew, and as the Time of The Lion
Men ended…and the last of this majestic
Race vanished from Earth…Their human
Students took over and carried on their

In the Early Days there were always 5,
5 to lead, 5 to heed…5 like the 5 points
Of a star, a crown…The fingers of the hand…
The form of sentient beings…A head, two
Arms, two legs…5…with an order of
7 to do their deeds and 1 above them
All to rule…13…13 like the phases
Of the moon, they made to balance the
Seasons and rotations of the Earth. 13…

And to balance the elements of life and
The forces of nature…together with the
Lion Men, The Ancient Masters forged
13 Crystal Skulls to hold all the knowledge
That they knew of creation…under
Heaven, of the Universe, to preserve
Knowledge so that nothing would ever be
Lost or abused or forsaken ever…

At the head of the order was Astopheles, the
Wisest and greatest of all in Form of
Mind, body, and spirit…He was ageless,
Appearing immortal…no one could
Determine his age upon sight…they
Only knew he was the First, and
Most powerful taught by The Lion Men.

Below Astopheles sat…Melora, great
Priestess of the East, of the sisters
Divine…The embodiment of the First Eves.
Then Jarenth…The Elder of the Brothers
Of Light, prime of the embodiment of
The First Adams, like Astopheles…
Then Xan and the Priestess known
As The Scarlett Shaman, also of the
Sisters Divine…who acted as
Administrator of the House of the
Ancient Masters…responsible for
Recruiting and disciplining all students
Of their school. Only these 5 will
Be discussed here.

It was upon the Eve of one of
The last summer moons that Astopheles
Sat in his Office of the Temple with
His respective Crystal Skull, the Skull
Of divination, which sat above all
Other Skulls…He was reviewing
Requests by the world leaders for
Counsel as current political unrest was
Troubling them. The people were in
A constant state of wanting more…
But if that were never enough, a
New age of reason and excitement
Had come upon the world…First
Contact had been made with an
Alien race…And at last all the
World had hoped to find the answers…
Answers as to their origins…Where
Had the First Adams and Eves
Come from…When, why, how? The
Questions were limitless…They only
Knew what The Great Lion Men had
Taught them…That they had escaped
Oppression and slavery from a Dark
Empire…and their true home was far
Far away across the Universe…beyond
The reaches of their science to chart…
It was a very hungry time…

Astopheles, a powerfully built tall man,
Was handsome as the First Adams were
Well known to be…he had long silvery
Gray blond hair and blue eyes with
A short-trimmed beard…and by
Current standards appeared to be about
35 years old…but in truth his age
Numbered in the hundreds of years,
Perhaps thousands. No one knew his
Real age, he just seemed to always be

As he sat staring into the Master
Skull, Melora entered…She too was
Tall and beautiful, fair of beauty and
Dark of skin, like the 1st Eves of
Earth…with long dark brown hair that
Was braided with shiny gold and blue
Beads…and gold eyes. Her Crystal Skull
Was known as The Skull of the Great
Waters, The Waters of Intuition…She
Entered Astopheles chamber office vexed and
Concerned but still kind; she was
Always calmly composed. “May I
Enter?” She asked.

“Enter.” Astopheles waved from his
Great marble desk. He already sensed
Her mood was grim.

“The senate is insisting again
For an audience.” Melora said,
Adjusting her long reddish purple gown.
“The people of Atlantis are demanding
More voice…Especially with their
Living styles…as well as news about
The new visitors from the stars…which
Continually remain in seclusion with
World leaders mysteriously. When can
I give them an answer?”

“Everyone wants to live like the
Wealthy citizens of Arcadia!” Astopheles
Bellowed., “The great pleasure city
Never ceases to entice the masses,
Everyone wants to live like a king or a
Queen…It never ends, they always
Want more…”

“They insist on the same rights as
Arcadia.” Melora said kindly, “They
Only want better lives…”

“But this is Atlantis not Arcadia…no
Rights have changed…They are the
Same as they were before. If they
Want to live in Arcadia…Then let
Them move there…” Astopheles groaned.
“Complain, complain…they certainly
Have not lost the right to complain…”

“Shall I use those \words then?”
Melora smiled.

“What words could sooth the state of
Things?” Astopheles said shaking his head.
“They do not want reason…They want
It their way…They always do…And Attan?
Lemuria? What are they asking?”

Melora laughed., “Attan wants the
Secret meeting of the visitors to be
Made public…For open talks and
Sciences to be exchanged…no more
Secrets…” She laughed again.
“And Lemuria is tired of hearing
The world news talk of Atlantis’s
Constant complaining…They want the
People to…shut up.”

“Of course!” Astopheles laughed out loud.
“And so would I! Who doesn’t?” He
Tapped his finger on his desk… “And
What, Arcadia has nothing to complain

She smiled. “Arcadia wants more rights
To acquire more gold to build bigger
Palaces for their citizens…Their homes
Aren’t big enough…The gold…isn’t
Gold enough.” Melora laughed. “They
Are all complaining about their leaders
Not being good enough for what they
Want to have…”

Again Astopheles simply shook his
Head as he sat at his desk staring
At the Skull of Divination before him.
“The always complain about their
Leaders not being good enough…When,
When are they good enough? They
Always have to blame some ONE
For all their problems…The problems
Were always there…is this new? A
Leader changes and suddenly he is
Solely responsible for all the mess…
If the leaders change tomorrow…then
It’s their fault…and again all the
Blame and excuses shift…Martyrs
Suddenly appear everywhere…They haven’t
Even given this ne a chance…They
Were ready to attack before it began…
Why then should we listen?”

Melora politely smiled, demure and
Kind as always. “They still want counsel…
The people are screaming…The leaders
Cannot appease them…Even the Temples
Of every religion are overflowing with
Worshippers cryi9ngn injustice…hatred…
Rage…No one can remember such
A time…They are calling it, the Last

“Of course it’s awful.” Astopheles grew
Angry. “The more people there are, the
More complaints there are, the more
They want…Each voice wants to push
The other out of the way.”

Just then Jarenth, The Scarlett
Shamanness and Xan entered Astopheles
Chamber very frustrated and impatient.
The tall blond Jarenth stepped forward
First, growing angry. “There are citizens
At the Gates of the House threatening
To riot. You should hear the names
They are calling us. What is wrong
With them?”

“There is suffering and there is greed
Everywhere.” The dark skinned and
Beautiful Scarlett Shamanness attested.
“What do you expect? There are
Extremes of luxury and poverty…is
There sense in that?”

“This has been building for ages.” Xan,
A tall, tanned skinned elder said, with
Long dark hair, he very much resembled
A Native American. “Something definitely
Does not feel right…This is no
Immediate descent into madness, it was
Planned a long time ago.”

“Perhaps all civilizations are tested
This way. “Astopheles pondered staring
At the Crystal Skull on his desk intently.
He laughed., “They want justice? Tell
Them to account for their actions…
The abuse they set upon themselves,
The children their peers…The lust,
The laziness…The bloodsports they
Delight in watching…The greed they
Chase…The blatant acceptance of
Misconduct to pursue what they want…
What of Nature…and the world
Around them? What of the great
Herds of beasts that roamed the
World that they slaughtered simply
Because they were in the way?
Does life hold no value? Tell them
To replace what they have taken…
Tell them to learn to care for what
They have taken for granted…Then
I will listen…”

“Not all are so awful…” Melora
Told him. “There are those that do
Love Nature.”

“They are a minority…True, they are
There, but still a minority.” Astopheles
Agreed. “I can think of very few.”

“There is a man building a great Ark,”
Jarenth then said., “He is the talk
Of the streets and taverns…He claims
To have been visited by some mysterious
Visitors…who told him to build a vessel
To save the animals from some catastrophe.”

“Oh?” Astopheles asked with sudden
Interest. “I have not sensed this, why?”

“It is true.” Melora nodded with the

“That is very interesting.” Astopheles
Said still staring keenly at the Crystal
Skull. “I will explore that further…
That intensely catches my ears…
There is something there I have never
Noticed before.” He leaned forward
Staring further into m the Crystal Skull
For answers. “This is truly an age
Out of control…And age without
Reason, desperate for blame…And
No one is listening, yet so many are
Shouting…why is that? There is NO
ONE person to blame…but there is a
World to blame…And voices From the Stars
Are calling …And Nature is Frothing to
Break Free…I think Nature should
Choose who to listen to…As would the
Heavens…So this Never Happens again…
Let the Skulls choose…And set Destiny Forth…”