She came into the depths of Periad from the sky, walking gently off The Stilts and descending as though cotton were all that lay between her and the ground, coming to rest before the distillery workers with only the lightest touches of bare feet on the earth. She seemed ethereal, in all green silks, a vision from another world as she spoke words of comfort and certainty to an uncertain populace. She mentioned the end of the world, but they always did, didn’t they?

There were always a few that would listen, that would join. Among them was Richard White.

He shouldn’t have gone, and he knew it. He had a son now, after all, but maybe that was why he went. He followed her down into the tunnels. He heard her words for days, and only thought of his family when he donned green and went out to fight for her in the streets. He and his friends killed a Researcher, but he was the only one who survived. He thought about his son again, and tried to flee. She called him back, and he returned. He wore green again, and fought again. He died, somewhere in the streets, all because the Idol commanded it.

It’s very hard to say no.

The gods are gone. Now there are only Idols.

It is not clear what circumstances make one an Idol, but what is clear is that all of them seek recognition for their existence. An Idol does not live in seclusion and silence. They impose themselves upon the world, and in doing so gain followers and passionate supporters, much like the gods of old.

In The City Idols are treated like heroes, or pariahs, depending on their behavior. Many of them try to gather cults and are hunted down by Researchers, for inclusion into their ranks or isolation in Rast. Some become quite popular, and by dint of getting along with authority, live quite happily in their fame, though most desire more and are hunted in the end. Still other Idols, only cropping up briefly, disappear with the ringing of the Peace Bells.


The Eight Crimes of The Iconodules Zeral