Chronicle of Ulak the Drifter
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Preamble

Of all the denizens of the Multiverse, the Uhb’Seq are among the most mysterious. No one has ever been to their home realm, and very few have had the privilege of meeting one. As such, information on their biology, history and culture has been limited to a few anecdotes and illustrations, spread sparsely through the annals of History. What little is known is as follows: the Uhb’Seq (meaning “They-Who-Wander-With-Purpose”, also known as the Pathfinders) are a race of academics, travelers and explorers from a higher plane of existence, in-between our mortal realm of Midgard and the divine higher branches of Yggdrasil. Omnilingual beings, they dedicate themselves to walking the Multiverse, chronicling every important event they witness in immense volumes and scrolls.

However, until recently, few of these documents had ever been translated into any of the Immortal Empire’s languages, as few have ever spent enough time with an Uhb’Seq to learn their written language. If not by the monumental effort of the scholars and translators of the Temple of Knowledge, none of these documents could ever be available to the citizens of the Empire. Thanks to the Imperial Commerce Guild, the Temple of Knowledge has acquired forty-five different scrolls, books and clay recordings from the Merchant Viceroys of Thuol for academic purposes. The documents are currently located in the Imperial capital city-world of Idhai, within the archives of the Sacred Library of Idhai.

Of these documents, twenty are authored by an individual known as Ulak Un’Lij Nar (“Ulak the Drifter”), a high-ranking scholar of what is purported to be a monarchic state in Dira Lemh, the realm of the Uhb’Seq.

While Ulak seems to specialize in writing travel journals and chronicles, he is also an avid enthusiast of philosophy and theology, having written seventeen volumes recording his interactions with deities from multiple pantheons, titled Party of Gods, all of them in possession of the Temple of Knowledge.

The other three documents by this author currently in the possession of the Temple of Knowledge are all part of a wider collection titled Chronicle of Ulak the Drifter, recording his exploration of the Multiverse. The most recent of these volumes, numbered Volume 219, is especially relevant, for it depicts Ulak’s travels through Midgard, particularly the Immortal Empire and its client kingdoms, as well as the Emerald Hegemony and the Solar Dominion. The volume also depicts Ulak’s interaction with Anibal Žalost, a fellow human and academic, who provided him with the information that made his journey possible. Žalost, a student of necromancy at the Imperial Academy of Higher Arcana, has himself contributed to the translation and study of the texts acquired by the Temple by providing a much-needed firsthand testimony of his interactions with Ulak.

The translated portions of Chronicle of Ulak the Drifter have shed some light on the Uhb’Seq as a people. From what can be inferred, Ulak and his kind are extraordinarily long-lived, with Ulak having been an adolescent at the formation of the Immortal Empire in the Earth year 293 million B.C. and having reached his mature age around the year 3042, when Earth and all its sentient species became official members of the Empire. Žalost’s testimony also confirmed the physical appearance of Ulak’s people. The Uhb’Seq are tall, lean, four-armed beings, lacking any hair and possessing elongated faces and two wide, violet eyes. Their dark skin is soft in appearance, yet it can resist the detonation of a plasma grenade.

Aside from being able to understand, speak, write and read in all languages with impeccable fluency, all Uhb’Seq have a natural ability to detect any Way in their immediate vicinity. They can also bypass most enchantments that prevent the Way from being opened, enabling them to travel almost unimpeded. When Ulak first started travelling is unknown, as are most details pertaining to his life outside of his constant wandering. Thus, it is not currently understood when the Uhb’Seq begin their lives as travelers, or when they develop their magical abilities.

Ulak’s writings reflect a spirit of enthusiasm and an almost childlike curiosity that is apparently shared by all Uhb’Seq. He is a voracious reader and, according to his journals, he has spent up to several months perusing the shelves of the Wanderers’ Library. He holds no prejudices towards the peoples he meets through his journey, often immersing himself in the customs and traditions of the locals, as he considers experience to be the best way to understand a different culture. Ulak, however, has a strong sense of morality, and will not doubt to adamantly (if politely) decline engagement in any activity that brings harm to the innocent. As such, he is displeased by slavery, needless cruelty and oppression.

Through his traveling of Midgard, Ulak seldom revealed his species to others, as he considered that this would have diminished his ability to interact with the native populations he encountered. How he managed to travel so extensively from the Milky Way all the way to Andromeda without standing out can only be attributed to his discretion and the immense diversity of species and cultures that comprise the Empire.

Because Volume 219 of Ulak’s Chronicle is the most relevant document in what respects to the Immortal Empire, the Temple of Knowledge and the Imperial Academy of Higher Arcana have tasked me with its translation into the Imperial Common Language. The following entries conform the last part of this volume, which the Temple has allowed me to reveal in anticipation to the release of the completed book.

Since a copy of the completed translation is to be donated to the Wanderers’ Library, I have made annotations (ending with my initials, S.K., to distinguish them from those made by Ulak himself) that will help readers from other realms or dimensions to better understand the context of Ulak’s narration. Hopefully, my translation is faithful enough to accurately convey Ulak’s thoughts and emotions about his travels and cause the reader to experience the same thirst for discovery held by the Uhb’Seq, the Pathfinders.

- Shahrazad Keret.

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