March 22, 2006, 08:07pm
Alternate History of Eternia as told by Zodak
A few things beforehand. This just part of an alternate history i've been mulling over for a bit. It includes elements from both Cartoons, the minicomics and the dc/star comics. There are things i've thrown out from each that i didn't like so don't expect this to gel with any one of the different continuities.
This fix tries to consolodate the history of the snakemen's involvement with Eternia and Hordak's supposed involvement in the creation of Eternia's Towers as told in the Mini-comics. This is all set in the Pre-He-man era so if you're not interested in that, don't read it. This may not be the final version, i may end up changing things, i may get sick of it and leave it. I dunno. Theres descriptions of geography in this so for those lacking in imagination i've included some maps Here
I am Zodac; Cosmic Enforcer, and i am dying. It has been several millennia since i adopted the mantle of Enforcer Prime in the wake of the death of honored Zodon, and in my time i have seen the rise and fall of scores of my Enforcer brethren. Once we were a great and noble order, charged by fate to watch over the universe and maintain the mystical order, the balance of good and evil. But that was long ago, and now we fight for our very survival against the encroaching darkness which threatens to engulf our dimension and all others in the chaos which crawls and consumes everything in its path. We are the final bastion between light and darkness, our allies all long gone, even the mighty armies of the Evil Horde were no match for this new evil, this abomination.
More and more i find myself thinking on my youth; on simpler times when the actions of a few good people could alter the fate of a cosmos, when wizards and warriors did battle in the name of peace and personal glory. Inevitably my thoughts time and again return to that world of Eternia, where i cut my teeth as cosmic enforcer oh so many centuries ago. Eternia is now of course long gone, and remains only in the hearts of us few old enough to remember those virgin times, a number that dwindles with each passing year and i fear it shan't be long before it is forgotten forever. I sometimes try to impress upon my charges just how glorious those times were, i attempt regale them with tales of He-Man and his Masters of the Universe and his ceaseless battles against the forces of Skeletor and his minions. I try to recount to them the early history of the Horde and the defining moments which shaped this universe in those early years, they do not listen. I am an old man, a relic of a bygone time and they have better things to do than to listen to the ramblings of this old fool; in truth i cannot blame them, the light of Eternia's star died eons ago and it is hard to connect with a time and place of which they have no experience. In truth..i pity them.
So it is with a heavy heart that i commend this tale to page, i do not know whether anyone will ever read this or if even there will be anyone left to read this book. Word from the front becomes more dire everyday so there is a good chance my work shall be in vain, but then again i must do something to occupy myself as there is little this puppet leader can do about it.
My tale begins many millennia ago on the small world of Eternia, out beyond what is now referred to as the lost zones. It was a blue and green world of mountains and valleys not unlike so many others, but what stood it apart from its peers was the deep magics which fueled the fire in Eternia's heart and caused all manner of beings to spring forth from its womb. Eternia is in an age of savagery, wild beasts and giant reptiles roam the vast plains which make up most of the worlds dry land, for in that time Eternia was not split up into tree-lobed landmass that was seen in the days of He-man, but was a single unified super continent encircled by great oceans. Neither was Eternia segregated into the lands of day and night which would be called the Light and Dark Hemisphere.
But while the land may have been united, the people were not. No great kingdoms existed in those times, instead the tribes of the different races which called Eternia mother warred on each other for her natural resources. Into this maelstrom came the invading forces of the fledgling Snake Empire led by King Hiss himself, already Lord of several worlds he now had Eternia in his sights. His snake warriors easily suppressed the local primitives and it seemed that nothing could stop the young world from becoming another conquest of Hiss's ambitions. That is until an unknown warrior stepped forward from the wild jungles of the north and waged bloody battle against the snakemen..and won. He was the greatest Sorcerer that Eternia would ever have and the local people called him Hero. Warriors from every tribe and every race flocked to his banner to repel the reptilian invaders, eventually an elite brotherhood would emerge, populated by the most powerful and wisest wizards, witches, sorcerers and mages of the time and it was they who struck the greatest blows against Hiss's people. They were to become the Council of Elders, protectors of Eternia against all who would sully it with evil and guardians of its people.
In time King Hiss was defeated and he and his warriors were banished to exist in limbo, sealed away in the in between places between dimensions and outside of time's loving grip. Finally there was peace. It was the beginning of Eternia's Golden Age; the tribes of Eternia were united and under the guidance of the Elders they made themselves a great utopia, a city of magical marvels the likes of which Eternia would not see again for millennia and it was during this time that the great Dam of the Ancients was constructed. Life was good and it seemed that this new age would endure forever..but if theres one thing my role as Cosmic Enforcer has taught me it is that nothing is forever.
It was the hay day of Eternia's golden age and the Council of Elders had ruled over Eternia for a hundred generations, the forces of evil which had plagued Eternia in the past were all but eradicated but it was known that out on the outer fringes of the planet, on the eastern shores dark things still lurked, ever threatening to re-emerge. After years of contemplation and research, the Council decided that now was the time to implement their final solution to the Eternian problem. Centuries of struggle had taught the Elders that the complete eradication of evil in this world was not only costly but impossible, that the universe must maintain a certain balance lest it fly off its axis and rather than fight it, they should embrace it. Any Cosmic Enforcer of the time would have instantly recognize this event as a mirror image of the credo which we, the Enforcers of the Cosmic Law, live by. Alas i had been called away from my duties by the order to aid in a matter of some urgency on the other side of the universe, so i was unaware of the tragic events which were to follow.
The Council wasted no time beginning the construction of the colossal Towers of Eternia which were designed to tap into the magical fields which emanated from the planet's magical poles and channel it into two towers of stone, one fashioned in the manner of a castle and the other in the image of a serpent. The energies coursing through these towers would then be channeled into a central tower which harnessed and tamed the raging magic so that they may be controlled.
These magical poles should not to be confused with the planet's magnetic poles which radiate magnetic waves from north to south, but fields of magic which erupt from the planet's core in the west and eastern plains and sweep the surface of the planet in opposing fields of light and dark magic.
It was during the construction of these towers that a stranger from another dimension arrived on Eternia, a figure that would come to haunt it's people throughout the ages in one guise or another. The outburst of mystical energies unleashed during the defeat of King Hiss has traverse the dimensions and brought Eternia to the attention of Hordak, but far from being the world conquering tyrant of the Horde of later years, this Hordak is on the run from an vengeful Horde Prime after a failed coup by Hordak has left Horde Prime on the verge of death and only through the work of Horde Worlds' scientists was his life spared. In fear for his life Hordak fled by using a dimensional portal, neither knowing nor caring where it took him as long it took him far from Horde Prime's grip.
He arrived on Eternia broken and battered, himself horribly wounded in the clash with Horde Prime, found by the Council he was brought to the City of the Ancients and cared for by their physicians. Hordak quickly had the measure of the Elders and realized if they knew his true nature they would not hesitate to send him back from whence he came, even if it meant his death. He spun a tale of how his world had been invaded by an evil armada, bent on their subjugation and that he was the last survivor of a great rebellion which had failed to free his world from the oppressors grip, in his desperation he fled by way of dimensional portal but not before he was mortally wounded...that part at least was true. Whether the Council believed his story or simply saw potential in him is uncertain, but they invited him to stay with them and live as an Eternian. Seeing the advantage in being under the protection of such obviously powerful beings Hordak quickly agreed as he knew that if Horde Prime ever found him his rage would know no bounds, and then as before Hordak's mastery of science would prove no match against his master's magic. However, despite the Council's seeming acceptance of Hordak he was still ostracized by the people at large on account of his appearance, strange even by Eternian standards and people could not help but see in his visage, tales of ancient demons of Eternian Legend which still lived on in the collective memory.
Soon however the Ancients' would have more to concern themselves with than Hordak's demonic appearance as a virulent plague began to sweep its way across Eternia, seemingly impervious to all magical remedy. Thousands perished by the day worldwide and even the City of the Ancients was not safe as one of the Council was struck down with the disease. All seemed lost until Hordak volunteered his services in combating the plague. "Your magic has failed you, allow me to try my science." he argued. Desperate, the council agreed and within the space of a month Hordak had developed a remedy. The people were overjoyed and elevated Hordak up to the level of Saviour.
"Not since He-Ro led us against King hiss," they would say "has Eternia owned so much to one man."
In truth Hordak was no more concerned with the fate of Eternia than he was about the bugs under his feet, it was only when the one of the Council's number fell victim to the disease did he turn his attention to is. After all who will protect him against Horde Prime if the Council is wiped out by some virus?
The Council however did not see things as Hordak did, and in gratitude for his service to Eternia and in recognition of his obviously superior command of the sciences, they offered him the vacant seat on the Council, much to Hordak's delight.
It was thus that Hordak first learned of the Towers of Eternia. Construction had been halted as the plague had took hold and so only the foundations of the central tower, and 2/5ths of the two antennae towers had been constructed. As his fellow Council Members explained their function to Hordak; a plan formed in his mind.
"These fools!," he thought. "they would harness the elemental powers of good and evil and do what with them? Waste them in some idiotic search for balance? If any one person could command those titanic forces he would have power unimaginable. Power enough for me to destroy that wretched Horde Prime!"
And so construction began anew with Hordak at the helm, but he knew that there would be no way he would be able to make his plan come to fruition with the council looking over his back. He needed a distraction.
That distraction would come in the form of the Council's old enemy. King Hiss.
And so Hordak traveled to snakemountain where the infamous Snake King and his followers had been entombed centuries previous. It was no co-incidence that snakemountain sat over Eternia's eastern pole, the very focal point of all of Eternia's dark energies. Those with evil in their hearts had been drawn to the place ever since the first man had slain his neighbor out of jealousy, now snake mountain stabbed skyward towards the heavens, a temple of evil.
Hordak made his way into the bowels of Snake Mountain and broken into the sealed chamber that house the pool of power, the gateway to that infernal realm the Elders had cast the snakemen all those years before, and opened it.
"Free, after all this time. FREE!" Hiss cried as he arose from the pit.
Back on Eternia again Hiss and Hordak hatched a plan. Hordak would give Hiss the opportunity to get revenge on the hated Council of Elders and in return, when Hordak had attained Godhood, the two of them would carve out the Horse between them, and Eternia would be Hiss's Throne. There was no love loss between the Horde and the Snakemen as Horde Prime himself had commanded the invasion which decimated the Snakemen home world, and started their own expansion spacewards. Both sides knew that the other would undoubtedly betray the other but the offer was too good to pass up, still they agreed, each one swearing to kill the other once the Elders had been eliminated and with the aid of intelligence provided by Hordak, King hiss started his second invasion of Eternia. The re-emergence of King Hiss had taken the Elders completely by surprise and several settlements fell to the snakemen before the Council realized what had happened. All those defeated were in turn turned into snakemen and so their numbers swelled with each new victory until their forces numbered greater than they had when they first arrived.
Work on the towers continued under Hordaks' watchful gaze while the remainder of the Council made their defense against King Hiss, but with the wizard He-Ro, who had led the first successful conflict against him, long since dead, the Council was in for a difficult fight.
The battle raged on and off for a year, neither side gaining the advantage until it was finally time, the Towers were near complete and soon Hordak would attain his Godhood. On the eve of the Tower's completion Hordak sent word to Hiss that he had information which would allow them to strike the final blow against their enemies. They met on the north-eastern shores of Eternia, a place that would be known in the future as the Desolate mountains. Here was the site of Hiss's new stronghold as the mountainous terrain would make any incursion by the Elders a problematic affair at best. The two met and Hordak informed Hiss in no uncertain terms that his services were no longer required, and detonated a Horde Device he had secreted under new Snake Mountain. What Hordak had not foreseen however was that Hiss' new fortress was sited on top of a rich vein of Korrodite, in fact it was this Korrodite which had given the Snakemen the advantage needed to fend off the Council. The Explosion was..in a word..earth shattering. I felt the screaming anguish of Eternia a galaxy away and traveled with all speed back to my charge world, but i would prove to be too late.
The explosion had nearly cracked the planet in two, indeed a hundred times larger than the City of the Ancients had been reduced to rubble, sending dust and rock clouds of apocalyptic proportions into the atmosphere which proceeded to block out the sun. The planets' tectonic plates fractured and fissures began to erupt in a snaking red belt of molten lava which began to burst forth from the planets' core, new plate were being formed, separating what had once been a single land mass into 3 distinct continents, connected by only the slimmest of land bridges. The ring ocean came flooding in forming what would soon be called the Sea of Rakash, after the mountainous peaks which had once stood overlooking the Sands of Mystery. The whole planet shook violently as earthquakes decimated cities and structures all over Eternia, even the City of the Ancients was nearly leveled by their ferocity. Fleeing in rocket form from the growing mushroom clouds, Hordak made his way to the Central Towers. The Elders could not fail to realize his treachery and if he could not reach the towers before they did all his plans would be for naught, but he did reach the towers before the they did, and i was waiting for him.
Cosmic Enforcers are supposed to be devoid of emotion, calm of spirit, giving advantage neither to good nor evil, but keeping the celestial scales balanced both within ourselves and without. You may speak ill of me my brethren when i say this, but in that moment i felt anger, and shame, for in my absence i had allowed this to happen; i had neglected my duties and this Hordesman was about about to attain that which mortals are forbidden to know; immortality.
So there at the foot of the central tower we did battle. For your average Enforcer this would have been a simple task but as i have mentioned i was still young, and inexperienced. Our powers were about equal and it was only through force of will that i defeated him. Just then the Council of Elders arrived and took Hordak into their custody and i took my leave. Now the Council faced a most difficult decision.
Their obsession with the harnessing and balancing of the forces of light and darkness on Eternia, although altruistic in nature had ultimately blinded them to the deceit within their own ranks. It was only by the slimmest of margins that their had avoided disaster and even Eternia as they know it has quite literally been shattered, some of the Council even argued things might have worked out better if they had never attempted to their great design, even if it meant surrendering Eternia to the snakemen. The Council was divided yet all were agreed that their presence was more a curse than a blessing. Half of the council decided it best that they leave Eternia for a new world, so that they may start afresh; the other half were unwilling to leave their home world and opted instead to remain and try to undo the damage they had done.
But first they had the matter of Hordak. His crime was greater than any Eternia had ever witnessed, and rightfully he deserved the most severest of punishments; to be cast into the prison realm of Despondos, from which there was no reprieve, but not before he was made to see his precious Towers brought low, swallowed by the planet itself in an earthquake of the Council's own making. To destroy the Towers was folly, but they vowed that no mortal hand would ever abuse its power for evil.
With the growing dust clouds thrown up by Hordak's treachery being carried high on air currents, the sun was was fast fading from the Eternian sky. The Temperature dropped sharply much to the dismay of the remaining snakemen as reptiles cannot abide the cold. So King Hiss, who survived the disaster at Rakash Peak through sheer luck, and his now decimated armies took flight to Snake Mountain and retreated to the only place they could find sanctuary, the prison dimension. Other reptilian species were not so fortunate and with the exception of the reptons who build their cities keep underground, all of Eternia's larger reptiles died out, leaving the smaller mammalians to inherit the planet. Where one door closes, another opens. It would be many years before the dust would clear enough for sunlight to grace Eternia again, but to keep the Snakemen from ever returning the remaining Elders placed an enchantment on winds of what is from that point on called the Dark Hemisphere, so that the dust which drove the snakemen into their self imposed prison would never dissipate.
Over the next few years many new evils would come to plague Eternia. With the expansion of Eternia's new plate, new mountains and volcanoes were being formed across the planet. One of these new volcanoes was to release the dreaded Energy Beast which had ruled Eternia in those early days when the planet was still cooling. This and many other would appear in those times only for the Ancients to defeat or seal them away in the earth. Sensing a disturbance in the mortal world even the demons of the Dark Dimension would attempt to wrest control of Eternia from it's protectors only to be beaten back.
As the planet began to return to normal and the emergence of the new race of humans began to make their own way in the world , the Elders decided it was time for them to hand over Eternia to their keeping. They retreated to the haven of Castle Greyskull, the capstone which sits on the fountain of Eternia's west pole, the spring of all the good magic on the planet. There they would remain, sealed away for all eternity or until the need be great enough and a champion be born to bring justice back to the power, by the power of Greyskull.
Over the centuries the guardianship of Castle Greyskull would pass down the ages by a line of sorceresses, sworn to protect the secrets within should the day arrive when eternia would be threatened again. The Elders who left Eternia in the days just after the fall of the Towers of Eternia would make home on a new world not dissimilar from the one their came from. A vibrant world with mountainous peaks, deep valleys and whispering woods; a world of magic which they could call their own.
Hordak? He remain lord of his prison realm for many centuries, unable to breach the dimensional walls under his own power he riled against the forces which had damned him to his hell. Death to Horde Prime. Death to the Council of Elders. Death to the Snakemen and death to all of Eternia. That is until some 70 years before the age of He-man, before the coming of Skeletor and his endless battle to breach the walls of that castle Greyskull; when Horde Prime finally found Hordak. Hordak begged for mercy for his past betrayals but to his surprise Horde Prime had already decided to spare his life, he had a job for Hordak. The Horde had discovered a world which caused Horde Prime particular disgust, its beauty invoked a hatred in him so intense that it plagued his every waking thought; he wanted the world to bear the stamp of Horde rule and their particular brand of "civilization" and Hordak was going to do it for him.
"What is the name of this world, Lord Prime?" Hordak asked.
Prime answered, "Etheria. It is called Etheria."