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War Stories

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Ambitious be the man who righteously seeks the impossible, and audacious be the man who repudiates his colleagues’ most fervent and well-intentioned deterrents to such perilous commitment; but derisible be he who, as days transmute into years and grass forever wilts and stars forever shift and youth forever parts, in such hubristic obduracy and woeful monomania, insists on perpetuating the asinine aspirations that irreparably blight his health; yet he who conquers, he who triumphs, he who in innocuous and jocular bumptiousness boasts of his victory over all the elements, shall be proclaimed a hero and exalted by posterity for millennia.

The aforesaid quote was meticulously written to me one depressing night below the dull stars in beautiful, immaculate, and magicked parchment by the proudest vehicle owner on Texel. Fret not, for my extensive compendium of historical battles and events that transpired during the Wars will not in any way be recorded in such speak, and I have always believed in the dissemination of knowledge to all, not just a few. If you happen to be an individual who takes personal offense at such watered-down language, I thank you for your interest but advise you to abandon my encyclopedia for the more sophisticated and equally-as-extensive series by Monkey, for with all due respect to such a knowledgeable and fascinating man, he does not believe in the same values as do I and refused to take part in my endeavors to translate all the historical accounts to a more palatable form. On that note, let us depart from such matters and analyze the wonderful message from a wonderful man.

I do strongly believe that his intentions in writing such a letter to me were not at all to prognosticate my many months to come, but that is exactly what he did. I was truly ambitious and audacious in seeking knowledge of the past despite all my companions advising me against such foolishness. Consequently, before I knew it, what had started as a hobby had soon become an addiction that has lasted for months with no end in sight, an obsession from which I can not part despite my hair wilting, my eyes glazing over, and my jolly nature conceding to a more dilapidated and monotonous solemnity. I do not blame anyone who ridicules and lambasts me for never knowing when to quit, but I sincerely wish upon the great iris that she grant me in a distant future the chance to say “I told you so” to all those who underestimated me. Unfortunately, Lambo, the wise author of that prophetic quote, is no longer living among us, so I shall have to shout loud enough for even the heavens to hear. If you have read this far into my preface, I thank you, for my wish is to immortalize his name in as many of my readers as I can. He did not deserve to perish in such an unsightly manner.

My apologies for opening this first volume on such a dark note, but, as survivors of the War, you all should be aware by now that the entirety of Humanity’s existence on this wonderful planet has been far from pleasant, and that by reading this series, you all are voluntarily submitting yourselves to a long and arduous journey through bloody political strife among Humans and social upheavals among Texeli, countless of deaths at the hands of our own, and an epistemological typhoon of a scale never in the history of the universe before experienced that shattered the very fabric of reality for both species and that nearly brought forth the end of Humanity as a whole. Unbelievably, such catastrophic events are all tightly bound in a roughly thirty-month timespan! Yet the repercussions reverberate far beyond the timespan on both directions, leaving me no choice but to analyze the many, many years before and the many, many months after the War up to the present day if I am to ever accurately and completely analyze all the social, economic, psychological, and political aspects, hence why the first volume of my series has nothing to do with the Wars themselves but Earth, the planet wherefrom all Humans were extracted by the iris.

You may be asking yourselves why in iris’ divine name is this first volume, and the possibly hundred of volumes proceeding it, so awfully immense. Or, perhaps, you may be wondering to yourselves who in his right mind would spend well over a century of his life pouring over so many journals, diaries, reports, videos, images, voice recordings, and much, much more to recount and analyze the history of the Wars and their immediate effects. As for the latter question, not even I know, and I would never wish such a task on my worst enemy, but in a world where we are all immortal, perhaps someone out there is crazy enough to attempt to read what will surely amount to half-a-billion words I will have so foolishly typed, not that this extensive encyclopedia is meant to be read in its entirety anyway.

As for the former question, the answer is rather simple. Texel is a planet whose size is significantly larger than Earth’s –- incredibly so. The Wars were not contained in a single point on this planet’s surface; the destruction spread like a plague and covered the entirety of the Girdle. Even with one hundred volumes, I will probably be unable to analyze every battle, every development, every discovery. To believe that every battle can be analyzed is to believe in fairytales! Even after a century and one hundred volumes, such a task will probably be no closer to being realized, much like subtracting any value from infinity. Hopefully, I have properly conveyed the severity and complexity of my work and have incited some appreciation for how vast the research has been and will be. Although I have been referring solely to myself on this preface thus far, I would like to wholeheartedly thank the many people who have made this research possible.

First and foremost, I would like to thank Jeffrey, who after unbelievable trials ascended to presidency within the Defender’s Wikia Foundation. Without his leadership, I would not have been able to acquire permission to translate all the historical texts to a more accessible language. Moreover, I would like to thank all those in the DWF who have ventured forth to contribute anything, if even a single, tattered sheet of paper, to the ever-expanding library of historical records. May the iris bless the Foundation, and may it never finish discovering more and more information of the War’s intriguing history, even if that means forever extending my encyclopedia. Without question, I would like to extend my gratitude to all those who recorded down such enlightening information on journals, clothes, walls, tablets, gears, ixstones, and much more. From Lore of Lytening to Mazit Uii, from Project Ark to Strategos, from the scattered journals of The NXT Chronicles to the many writings by Ishpah and Abbott-Abbott, there are so many wonderful sources of information that it would take me an entire volume just to praise them all! Last but not least, I would like to thank all of the Texeli who have welcomed us into their homes. Even after our use expired and the terrible truth was revealed, you all welcomed us and did not discard us, did not forsake us, did not destroy us, and for that I am eternally grateful.

Without further ado, enjoy the first volume of this maddingly long encyclopedia. Of course, there is nothing to enjoy about the Human predisposition, about the origins of such a corrupt species. In behalf of all Humans, despite my no longer being one, I apologize.

I apologize.