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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:44 am 
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In the midst of a conversation I recently had on Discord, I came to question the trustworthiness of the sources we have on D’ni culture and history.

  • Myst, Riven and Tehrahnee events are recounted by Katran’s, Atrus’ and Gehn’s journals. Gehn’s journals stop before a crucial point, for obvious reasons. What’s left is a recount whose accuracy and objectivity we just have to trust. Also, there doesn’t seem to be any Rivenese or Tehrahnee source.
  • It might be worth reiterating that the Myst and Riven games are based on the above-mentioned journals, but are explicitly not an accurate representation: Myst and related Ages were bigger and with more places of protection, trap-books are a game mechanic, sound doesn’t travel through the linking panel, buildings in Ae’gura have the wrong size, etc. How wide is the gap between the games and the journals, only Cyan knows.
  • Most of what we know about the D’ni comes from the DRC findings in the Cavern, the Ages and from Yeesha’s sermons. But while relocating to Rehleeshahn, it’s likely that only the least important documents and items were left in the Cavern, and Yeesha is known to have ‘interpreted’ D’ni history her own way.
  • Besides their Age inspection duties, the Maintainers acted as a sort of police/military force, which suggests they had classified documents. Considering D’ni technology, it isn’t far-fetched to assume those documents were encrypted (and perhaps stored in the Lattice). Assuming anything was left around, could the DRC, which was constantly underfunded, afford a cryptoanalyst to decode them?

Speaking of the Maintainers (and a bit OT), they make a rather poor impression: they were caught completely unprepared by A’gaeris’ conspiracy, and in its aftermath they seemed rather absent. Did they just disband, or decided to go undercover? Could they be the ones who ended the bahro war?

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 12:33 pm 
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Apologies in advance for only addressing your OT point at this time.

korovev wrote:
Speaking of the Maintainers (and a bit OT), they make a rather poor impression: they were caught completely unprepared by A’gaeris’ conspiracy, and in its aftermath they seemed rather absent. Did they just disband, or decided to go undercover? Could they be the ones who ended the bahro war?
I'm sorry, but when did the bahro war end? The last I heard they'd merely been lured away from the cavern by Yeesha who possesses something they want.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:06 pm 
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True, but that was a temporary solution, and it was ten years ago.

Yeesha wrote:
(11/05 19:17:51) Yeesha: Because of that, I will draw them away. Away from the cavern. Away from you.
(11/05 19:18:24) Yeesha: I do not know how long they will seek what I carry. It could be only days, it could be months.

Note how she did not expect to be able to draw the bahro away from the Cavern for this many years. Perhaps, at some point, rescue could only come from a lesser evil, a more organized and experienced force that dealt with them in the past.

Yeesha wrote:
(11/05 19:19:10) Yeesha: I will try to return and help you in the future.
(11/05 19:19:18) Yeesha: If things go well, I will offer you my aid.
(11/05 19:19:31) Yeesha: If things do not, you must find a way on your own.

Perhaps things did not go well, but then what could have kept the bahro from coming back? Or perhaps the war ended, so that her aid was no longer necessary.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 4:29 am 
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I am glad you brought this subject up Korovev. I have questions and interpretations of my own of the pellet cave bahro glyphs. 3,4 & 5 I see differently than what is told. I may be a bit sketchy on my glyph numbers.
BCG 1 in the pool cave represents Yeesha leaving home (Tomanah). BCG 2 she is in the desert looking for some thing? BCG 3 Yeesha meets Southwestern Indians, possibly Anasazi or Pueblo/Navajo. It appears to me she is trading with a great Chieftain, This is shown by the rows of corn, turtles, people an things. She is trading for the location to the entrance (cleft) that leads to D'ni Aguera. Remember Atrus and T'Anna do not have linking books to Aguera. Now the cleft possibly would have been a scared place of the Indians.The Chieftain believes her to be a person from there ancient lore of Underground people, one of the 4 worlds in lore. BCG 4 we see Yeesha depicted in the caverns in or on the way to Aguera city. BCG 5 we see Yeesha in the middle of a spiral. I believe this spiral represents the Kings of D'ni. Yeesha is in the middle because she has studied/learned about all the Kings. The reason I believe this is because, there are 37 pedestals in the Kings Palace with a spiral in the center of the floor. There 33 images of people in the glyph with 4 on the outer corners. Yeesha is still learning about her peoples history at this time.
I may be way off on this but wanted to put it out there to see what everyone thought.
Let me know in here what you think, possible? maybe? now way in the Universe? :> )
shorah gah bigtotee gah t'agho

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:47 am 
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Bahroglyphs interpretation is not my forte, so I’ll leave it to our bahro experts ;)

DaVinci wrote:
BCG 5 we see Yeesha in the middle of a spiral. I believe this spiral represents the Kings of D'ni. Yeesha is in the middle because she has studied/learned about all the Kings. The reason I believe this is because, there are 37 pedestals in the Kings Palace with a spiral in the center of the floor. There 33 images of people in the glyph with 4 on the outer corners. Yeesha is still learning about her peoples history at this time.

One problem I see with your interpretation is that since Keraþ’s abdication in 660 B.C., the D’ní have been ruled by a Guild-based oligarchy (I’m not aware of any monarchic – or democratic – eras in the middle). In my understanding, Yíša has gripes with D’ní culture more under its oligarchical than its monarchical era.
By the way, this could support my point that the DRC had to work with leftovers: documents and artifacts related to recent times were perhaps considered more relevant by the D’ní, so they relocated them to Relíšan, and that’s why there’s a big gap in the D’ní history we know.
It could be that the DRC didn’t have time to publish that part, but if I remember correctly, the Kings’ biographies came out a long time ago, so they would’ve been able to publish at least a chronology if they actually had any documentation.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:56 am 
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She wouldn't have needed to trade for the location of The Cleft, Atrus knew where it was and she would have known too growing up as Atrus often visited the Cleft.

As for the spiral one (BC6), generally the spiral represented one of two things, a. The Journey, and b. The Descent into D'ni. I lean more towards the idea that it is a combination of the two. Yeesha at the center of the journey because she is the guide, with the people being The Called. The 4 figures in the corners I'd suggest as being representations of the four Seers.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 11:24 am 
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Thank you Korovev and Tweek for the response. The glyph BCG 6? in question I was looking at from a chronological order before the Calling. I would think that Atrus would have told/shown Yeesha where the cleft was also, but I do not recall any detail or story of him saying so, and we do not know the distance from Tomanah. If you have something please point me in the right direction.
The trading part is really conjecture on my part, but, if Yeesha did not know it might be plausible ??

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:45 pm 
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Well there isn't a really defined chronological order, there is a speculated chronological order.

Anyway, there is no story of him telling Yeesha the location, but then we don't have a story covering absolutely everything. Atrus leaves Tomahana to go to The Cleft to get spare parts for the crystal imager, which indicates he visits the Cleft often enough to have some sort of "lab" set up there. I don't think it's a stretch that Yeesha would have learned the location growing up if not gone there with Atrus herself.

I seem to recall Tomahana being Northwest of The Cleft, I can't remember if it was a couple of miles away or 30 miles away though.I can't say with certainty though as it has been a while, I might be getting confused with the area Ti'ana accessed the D'ni tunnels from which was 30 miles to the south of the Cleft.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:33 pm 
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Tweek, good point, Atrus may have taken Yeesha to the cleft but not the entrance to D'ni. So my idea of trading may still be valid because she was seeking the entrance, the Indians may have know where this was located. Yeesha could also have just been seeking a knowledge from them because of indain lore that resembled D'ni lore or history.
I will still hold to the idea that the spiral glyph in BCG 6 is Yeesha gaining knowledge of the Kings and D'ni culture for now.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2017 7:57 am 
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Tweek wrote:
I seem to recall Tomahana being Northwest of The Cleft, I can't remember if it was a couple of miles away or 30 miles away though.I can't say with certainty though as it has been a while, I might be getting confused with the area Ti'ana accessed the D'ni tunnels from which was 30 miles to the south of the Cleft.


The entrance that Tiana used to access the Tunnels was likely 6 or so miles, from the Lodge or somewhere around there given that Tiana and her father were able to make the trek from the Lodge to this area in a short time everday. They'd wake up an hour before dawn, travel to the circle and return before mid day, spending two hours or so at the area each time. The entrance to the tunnels in this area was east of the Lodge, but southwest of the Cleft. The Cleft was a waypoint between the Lodge and the nearest city, which took T'iana 7 days to make a round trip nighttime journey where she slept during the day to avoid the sun. Her first stop was the Cleft, where she left after sunset and arrived before dawn sleeping till evening. That puts the Cleft about 32 miles from the lodge. Given the three areas are in a triangular shape in relationship to each other, I'd warrant that the journey from the Cleft is longer than that of the one from the Cleft to the circle and thus the entrance to D'ni in the circle is likely closer than the walk from the Lodge to the Cleft.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:24 am 
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ChloeRohodes. You have just mentioned something I did not know. I thought Anna and her father actually lived in the cleft while doing their surveys, I did not know of a lodge,(interesting) is this in the book of Ti'ana?

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:28 am 
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Yes


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 4:49 am 
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DaVinci wrote:
ChloeRohodes. You have just mentioned something I did not know. I thought Anna and her father actually lived in the cleft while doing their surveys, I did not know of a lodge,(interesting) is this in the book of Ti'ana?


Yes, the Cleft and Lodge are separate locations. There's a description of both in the Book of T'iana. The Lodge, from the description, kinda sounds like the Pueblo Indian homes that were built into the sides of rock walls, if I'm remembering the passage right.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:06 pm 
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As Tweek points out, the Guild of Maintainers kept a degree of secrecy around their technological R&D. It could be argued that, in order to carry out their inspection duties, they also had some familiarity with the Art, perhaps some of them were former Writers.

Likewise, the Guild of Writers could also have kept a degree of secrecy around their own R&D. Just like we have little information about how the Maintainer suits worked, how the Wall worked, or how many settings the KI actually had (or how they called it, for that matter), there might as well have been various bahro-like techniques (I don’t like the term “Yeesha magic”) under research. If they are not mentioned in the documents, it could be because they were off the records.

10.000 years is a long time; factoring an average lifespan of 325 years, they would feel like about 2000 years for us, and starting from a technological level comparable if not higher than the one we are at now. We know that there were rogue Writers (Kadish, A’gaeris). We know the D’ni had, at some point, a secret intelligence force (the Relyimah); they were disbanded, sure, but can we exclude a comeback in the period between Kerath and the Fall? Or after the Fall? How likely it is that in all the time since Garternay, before Yeesha not a single Writer or Maintainer, whether in good standing, undercover or rogue, attempted to Write beyond the boundaries of the Guild’s rules?

Calam was said to be a Master Writer, to be versed in everything the D’ni knew about the Art. Said by who? By Yeesha. Was she giving an objective evaluation based on her non-first-hand knowledge of the D’ni, or praising a lover? Perhaps he was good, but not part (or aware, even) of that hypothetical Writers/Maintainers undercover research group.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 4:51 am 
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ChloeRodes,shorah, I did go back and re-read this, but now I have another dilemma. Myst Reader 3 books page 324. I read 2 men in a desert at night see the ground move and shake, sand and rock seemed to be lifted. They say "Allah preserve us!". American Indians did not know of Allah. So now where does that place the cleft and lodge??

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