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The Rise and Fall of Atlantis
Malis had never felt so utterly alone.
His boat was slowly drifting to where he knew not. He could not see signs of land. Things were not looking hopeful. The thought of dying of thirst did not appeal to him. Yet here he was...surrounded by endless water.
Only through his wits, might it be possible to live. A very rare few, so condemned, had survived. So he knew it could be done. Moreover, once returned, they became instant celebrities and were allowed full membership in society. Malis realized he would not have this option. He was sure that none before him had ever been taken out so deep into the ocean.
The Adepts definitely wanted him dead.
He also knew that a miraculous return would undermine this seemingly voluntary suicide and require the White Adepts to take him to trial at the Great Council. Which would inevitably return him right back to this same fate. All of this, with the assumption, he could somehow find a way to solve his current predicament. The real problem for Malis now was how to survive.
Now there were two major currents that flowed nearby Atlantis. One, the most powerful, came directly from the Equator, was very warm and traveled south of Atlantis . This current moved over a circuitous route carrying tremendous moisture to the southern areas of Atlantis, then eastward to Northwestern Africa, down around the western coast of this massive continent. Then moving around Northern Antarctica and then up the eastern side of South America joining a mirror current originating from the Caribbean to continue the cycle. Atlantis' massive size and position blocked much of the water flow that currently warms the Northern continents on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. This southern flow was the one that Karos believed would carry Malis to his death. A current that fishermen were well aware of and were always determined to avoid. For once caught in it, it was difficult to escape. Without oars or sails and unable to spot land, Karos expected that Malis would have no chance.
The other current comes out from the Caribbean Sea. This very strong flow then splits into two separate currents. One joins with the strong Southern Atlantis stream while a second travels up and around the western and northern edges of Atlantis. Then up to and along the eastern US, turning east and then to and around Southern Europe to join back with the powerful southern equatorial flow. Malis’ boat was far enough out in the deeper ocean that it got caught up in this flow. A current every bit as dangerous as the southern one. Mainly as it moves somewhat faster. However, it did carry Malis’ craft towards the northern edges of Atlantis.
As he had no oars or sail, Malis would be unable to direct or control the boat. Then it dawned on him. He was a Blue Adept. He might be able to nudge or push the boat towards one of Atlantis' many beaches. It had never occurred to Karos to take the headband away from Malis. Karos was absolutely sure that Malis would never find his way back. And it looked like Karos was correct in this assumption.
“But which direction to go in?” thought Malis. He could tell the east because that was where the sun would always rise. So he began forcing the craft into that direction. However, as his thirst began to get worse, he was having difficulty keeping his concentration.
He was adrift in a vast ocean of water with no land or feature anywhere in sight... in any direction. How could he use his crystal to maneuver, if he couldn't tell where to maneuver to?
After drifting for at least two days, Malis noticed the air was getting cooler. Especially at night. A bit of morning dew was forming on the edges of the boat, which the Blue Adept eagerly lapped up. It was not enough and his thirst was rapidly growing. He now knew he must be going both north and east. He also knew Atlantis was very large and had to be somewhere close by. Yet he could see no indications of any land, whatsoever. Not even birds.
Malis then noticed a single Dolphin swimming nearby. It did not appear to have a pod associated with it. Lone dolphins were a very rare sight. Was it being ostracized for aberrant behavior? Just as he was? This would be a very strange co-incidence, if so. Malis didn't like dolphins, but this one seemed different.
Malis could sense that this Dolphin was lonely, entirely akin to how Malis was also feeling. Some form of bonding was taking place between these two creatures. Or was some other unknown force at work?
The Dolphin approached the vessel several times. Bumping and nudging it. The dolphin would cling to the side of the boat, as if attempting to reach Malis. It seemed to want to be near him. Even to the point where Malis was able to reach out and touch it. The Adept eventually was even able to grab a hold onto the dolphin's top fin. This did not frighten or intimidate the Dolphin whatsoever. Malis held on and let the Dolphin take the boat with it. Malis used his Blue Adept ability to take most of the weight of the boat from the Dolphin. This would enable it to move much faster. The ship then began traveling far more easily. Carried along entirely by the Dolphin's movement. Since the sun was up and the ship was moving toward it, Malis knew they were now going due east.
He had been on the ocean for two days before encountering his aquatic benefactor and was now becoming desperately thirsty. Lack of water was greatly diminishing his crystal focus. If he didn't find water soon, the boat's real weight would return and greatly slow the dolphin down. Possibly even halting its progress. That would more or less doom Malis to die of thirst.
The Blue Adept remembered that the Dolphins were once able to communicate directly with E-osu. By some form of mind connection. At least that was what the stories had offered. So he tried to think of where he wanted his aquatic companion to move towards. He began imagining land, beaches, etc. The Dolphin suddenly made an abrupt change in direction. Almost due south. It seemed to have started taking the boat to where Malis was mentally directing the creature. Moreover, the animal did not seem uncomfortable at all and appeared eager to help him. Malis began to believe this was not a coincidence. What it was he never knew. And for the life of him he couldn't determine why. Some strange fate was at work.
One cheery note did enter into his egotistic mind. Malis had acquired his very own dolphin companion. Just as E-osu. This brought a smug expression to the Blue Adept's face. One wonders if this dolphin would have so eagerly befriended Malis, if it had known where all this would lead?
It wasn't very long before first birds, then a distant mountain top and a green landscape of jungle started to appear. All lit by the bright sun burning overhead. Although Malis had never seen this part of Atlantis, he immediately knew where he was.
Stories about a mountain with the face of a man, one bearing a strong nose, lying on his back and gazing to the Northeast were common.
This was E-osu's Mountain. Or Mt. El.
So named by the many fishermen, who had ever seen it. The stories said that this particular peak contained E-osu's face and was rumored to have been created shortly after he died. Which was partially true. On the day E-osu's body was placed into his crystal sarcophagus, a minor earthquake occurred and a huge landslide came off this mountain's top. This removal created what appeared to be a face. However, it didn't really fit E-osu's profile. This could be easily compared to what he actually looked like in life. His body was totally preserved within the crystal clear atal sarcophagus. Something about the crystal prevented decay as well. It didn't matter if the likeness was accurate though. This landmark became a permanent and specific guidepost to any persons or ships that made their way anywhere near it. This profile could be spotted on either side of the continent....north or south. As far as you could sail and still see the mountain.
Despite this sighting of precious land, Malis was again getting worried. He realized this mountain was within the wilderness areas. How ironic that he, who was supposed to be dead out in the ocean, was now in the area of banishment? He was about to step onto the lands of the Beast Men?
The regions of Atlantis north and southeast around Mt. El were generally unexplored. Portions on the Northern side of the Atal mountain chain were semi-desert due to less rainfall. But there were also lush jungles pocketed along the Northern coast. Short rivers watered green pockets with plenty of vegetation and clear fresh water. On the vast eastern side of the long mountain chain were rolling hills covered by thick forests. Until these hills reached a narrow plain on the eastern edges. Wide beaches of white sand could be found intermittently along the ocean borders in the north, northeast and the southeast.
The current population of Southern Atlantis was estimated at around 70,000+ people, the vast majority of whom were living in and around the Capitol. There were small farming and fishing villages up and down both sides of the Continent. But only out to around 100 miles in every direction from Atalan. The majority of these communities were only a few days walking distance to this city
The unexplored far north was the lair of those who had been banished. A region long ignored and unaccounted for by those within the Atlantean leadership. This "Beast Men" population had also grown as well. Something that Malis would soon discover.
Shortly after spotting land, the friendly dolphin took Malis' boat right up to an isolated beach surrounded by dense greenery and most importantly...a fresh water flow. Malis jumped out and pulled the boat up onto the shore. He rushed to the clear running stream into which he repeatedly dipped his hands to drink.
Once his thirst was sated, he realized he was hungry. He could see some fruit trees on distant hills, but was too hungry and too exhausted to hike up to them. He gathered some wood sticks, then dry grasses and removed a special flint stone from a leather pouch he always carried around his neck. Malis got a small fire going. He then went and picked up a large stone. One with a sharp pointed edge. He began walking towards his boat.
His Dolphin companion was still waiting in the water near where the boat sat. This Dolphin had adopted Malis. He didn't feel as lonely with this human around. He would stick around and help Malis get fish. He would assist him in any way possible. He had no fear of this human.
Malis true to form, took the stone in his hand. He then walked over to the Dolphin petted him and then bashed his “friend” over the head with the rock.
Malis repeatedly struck the Dolphin until it was dead.
The Blue Adept became aroused as he did this despicable betrayal. He was turned on by both the blood and the dolphin's pain. He then removed from his pouch a piece of black obsidian with only one very sharp edge. Malis bent over the dolphin's body and started to cut it up. He then laid this flesh on flat rocks heated by the fire. Once reasonably cooked he began to eat this loyal "friend."
Malis was now guilty of having killed his brother and a dolphin.
Unknown to Malis, another human male was observing him from behind thick brush. This person suddenly burst out from his hidden coverage and came rushing forward. The loud screaming, his very large size and the savage intensity in the stranger's eyes, momentarily frightened Malis. But only momentarily.
Suddenly, a large rock came hurtling through the air from in front of the speeding attacker. The man fell silent to the ground. He wasn't quite dead...yet. Malis mentally retrieved the rock. He was getting ready to finish the job, when a number of men similar in size to the first began moving out from the foliage towards him. All completely naked. Each was covered in a form of camouflage grease paint and thus difficult to see within the forest. They too were screaming and rushing towards him.
Malis realized that he would have to give these men great cause to fear him.
Almost as soon as the thought crossed his mind, he focused on two of the oncoming men. Using the power of his crystal, Malis lifted them both up into the air and flung them violently in opposite directions, smashing their bodies into thick tree trunks. Killing them instantly. He had now broken the inviolate rule several more times. These would not be the last of his crimes. Merely the beginning.
Upon witnessing the ghastly deaths of their two comrades, all the other men immediately halted and stepped far back from Malis. To further impress upon everyone there his power, Malis reached out to the nearest individual and caused him to explode from inside out. The man's intense screams of pain were frightening. All the men present immediately fell down on one knee, bowed their heads and held out their empty arms. A sign of obedience.
Malis immediately suspected that these must be the "Beast Men;" he had heard so much about as a child. These males were much larger in bulk then the average southern male. They appeared to have bigger bones and far heavier musculature. And were brutish in appearance. These guys could have easily killed Malis without his Blue Adept advantage. They were, on average, only an inch or so shorter, but in weight, much heavier. Moreover, all of this extra weight was hard muscle. Not an ounce of fat on any of them. Their faces and other parts of their bodies were hairier than the typical southern male.
Apparently, there had been many changes in this group of humans over the hundreds of years of separation from their cousins to the south. Malis instantly realized that the leaders of Atlantis were very out of touch. Especially concerning details of some of the other human occupants on Atlantis. None of the Adepts Malis had ever conversed with seemed aware that there were so many of these "Beast Men.” Nor how powerful they had become physically.
It began to dawn on this particular Blue Adept that such males would be quite formidable in the form of an army.
This thought instilled a growing idea into Malis' mind. He would come to rule these people using sheer force, intimidation and superior knowledge. He would train them in the military arts his father had surreptitiously taught to him as a young boy. Malis would create an army, the likes of which, Atlantis and possibly the World had never seen.
We now know that Malis' father, Amalek, came from a militant civilization along the Western coast of Africa. From a region conquered by Bakara. The Bakarans had developed military concepts and warfare technology yet unknown on Atlantis.
Amalek purposely kept this knowledge from the Atlanteans in case there might eventually be contact between his former country and them. He did not want to enable Atlantis with such knowledge nor give them any advantages. The Atlanteans already possessed formidable power with the Adepts. Amalek did not want to give them military knowledge. Malis' father dreamed of one day returning to Bakara and then coming back to conquer Atlantis. Because of the eagerness and sponge-like curiosity of the youthful Malis, Amalek chose to pass this knowledge solely on to him. The other brother, Malik, had seemed oblivious to such knowledge. Amalek also believed such information could assist Malis in aiding his real countrymen, if they ever showed up.
The young boy was instructed in the art of the bow and arrow, the creation of shields out of wood and hides and the use of these same materials to provide protective covering over the trunk and groin areas of the body. Amalek's people were in the beginning stages of forging metal (copper) into knives, arrow and spear points. More importantly, Malis was also trained in military strategies known to the Bakarans.
Malis studied the Beast Men's weaponry, which was very primitive. This would be conqueror needed even more superior weaponry if he was going to defeat the incredible power of the Adepts. He decided to make the bows his father had instructed him in much larger and far stronger. Giving their reach far greater range and superior penetration. Because of the size and strength of these men, they could easily string and pull back these larger and stronger bows. Malis believed this one weapon would give him a great advantage. One he would certainly need against the Adepts.
Troops also require training and discipline in order to perform as directed by any leadership. Malis took a little over a year to consolidate his control over all of the Mutags, the name by which the "Beast Men" called themselves.
All the village headmen immediately became his lieutenants. Especially, after he killed one of their braver leaders. One, whose head was instantly separated from his body and flung violently up against a tree. A lesson deeply impressed upon all present.
Malis demanded that he be referred to as the "Great Headman.” He had now acquired the title denied his father. He would proudly announce this fact to Amalek in person. And not soon enough to suit him.
Malis also began the custom of painting his face and parts of his upper body in a special color. One that made him appear far more frightening to the Mutags. He chose the color of the place from which he had been newly reborn. The hue of the ocean. Malis also chose to become identified with Dolon, the god of the sea. This blue color would also make it easy for the Mutags to recognize their new god.