“How does this beautiful creature you ride fit into this newfound path of yours?”
“He is my spirit, my totem, and he is me. I am a healer, and as such, I wield no weapon other than the arsenal of love and shared abundance. You could call my friend here my weapon, a weapon that heals all he crosses. Alone I can surf all the interdimensional workings of space and time, but only together can we heal our people and our world, fulfilling the destiny our gifts were meant to breed. OUR name is Voltero Envisaetherius, and we thrive to echo synergistic abundance through multiversal eternity.”
Like every other nation struck by a world-shattering event, Ernack’s first response to the social crisis that ensued was an attempt to maintain its well-established hierarchy that was considered crucial for Trinells. The leaders and the rich attempted to call for their right to maintain their positions when the lower layers of their ruined society, holding them accountable for the apocalypse, demanded that they step down. Amidst the social chaos, those with the most wit and merit in the nation managed to pass unscathed for the most part. One such case was that of a well-known family of prospectors that managed to wrestle their influence out of the hands of the power-hungry by validating the fact their ore mining process was the most efficient one. In the nation’s time of need, it couldn’t have been challenged nor emulated by others.
Continuing to reap the support of the grateful Ernack society, the prospectors and their investors lived a comfortable, sheltered life. All of their families welcomed such a state of things, as they hardly felt the repercussions of the raging post-apocalyptic war — all of them, except for the prospector’s son — Voltero.
The prospectors’ efficiency alone guaranteed a safe, comfortable life, and they went to great lengths to keep the investments coming. When the Crystal Scourge paralyzed the extraction and delivery of ores and minerals, Voltero’s family turned to their son’s shunned gift, seeking the most efficient way to focus and utilize it for the well-being of the house and their allies. With it, they carelessly imprisoned their son into forced compliance with the Cryptonian market’s demands when he was barely old enough to understand the concept.
To Grow and Play
Growing up protected from the outside world, Voltero never knew anything but the walls of his home. Still, being an unusually imaginative child, he never lacked worlds and friends towards which he could turn. However, when the words the child mentioned became too believable to ignore, Voltero’s family urgently summoned the wisdom of the Golden Grove to observe the process. At times it would be a drawing flower or a piece of a plant they had never seen before that Voltero would note in his sketchbook. Other times, “otherworldly companions” — creatures that nobody had seen before — that the child could describe in great detail. Under the keen eye of the Golden Grove mages, Voltero’s practice continued to grow more intense and less mindful about the child’s young age.
The prospectors were quick to write it off as vivid imagination until Voltero could find different locations anywhere on their plane of existence. Initially shocked to discover that what the secluded child was telling them was true, his parents quickly realized that their son’s ability would help the family save their wealth and resources as they continued to dominate the sales of ore and minerals.
And just like that, Voltero had been stripped of his carefree childhood early on. Instead, he took his place next to his parents as their solution to the supply issue. Initially, his love and loyalty to his family rendered him proud and willing to assist their endeavors, focusing his abilities according to their wishes, forgetting all about his magical worlds and his strange companions from the sketchbook. He worked hard to prove himself to his parents by finding rich veins of minerals and ore, seemingly without an effort from any part of the plane of existence. Such ability has caused his family’s wealth to grow significantly while many others still survived on the verge of poverty. For Voltero, it was the standard order of things he had grown into.
But the time had come when his mind matured, riddled with questions ranging further from his designated role. There was a longing in his heart for something that had been missing for a long time. Time had passed, and while Voltero was still as efficient in his tasks, inside, he no longer felt pride and fulfillment in a well-done job. Instead, he found himself secretly spending more and more of his time in a meditative state to search for something beyond the mines across the Cryptonian realm. Something he had lost a long time ago.
Friends in High Places
On one occasion, Voltero engaged in a particularly intense meditation in search of new points of prospecting value when a mysterious crack opened up in the middle of his chambers, forming a portal large enough to let him through. Stricken by the incredible, otherworldly view that waited for him on the other side, Voltero quickly forgot about his initial task. He felt attracted by the incredibly vivid vision to the point where it lured him in closer. Yes, there was a mine, but a mine with ores and minerals he had never seen before. Right there in front of him, well within reach.
On the first touch, the portal border felt dense and cold, but it only took a light push for the barrier to break into concentric circles, letting him through closer to the resources lying ahead. Wary but curious, Voltero pushed in further until the palm of his hand wrapped around one of the rocks glowing with alien light. The familiar image of a creature immediately stormed through his head, startling him into pulling his arm back through the portal into the safety of the world he knew. Uncertain about the consequences if he would have decided to proceed onward, Voltero, instead, decided to close the fissure. But to his shock, rather than closing, the portal reformed into a new one and opened to a new, unfamiliar area full of exotic plant life and crystal-clear water that shimmered with a glow so majestic it was hard to put into words. In the distance, a giant creature approached through the mist. A moment of recognition took over Voltero’s body. Suddenly, every insecurity was gone, and he walked through the barrier that closed behind him.
Little did his family know, once they discovered he was missing, that many seasons would pass in not knowing what happened to their only son and their most valuable asset before Voltero would emerge again.
As Above, so Below
The Prospectors’ worst fears were fulfilled when they extracted the last ore from the existing mine, and Voltero still hadn’t returned. A lot of accumulated wealth and resources were spent again in a desperate search for ways to remedy the painful blow to their dynasty. As the investors kept backing away from the failing business, they found themselves under societal pressure that had evaded them before with no clear strategy for recovery. The events culminated when an unsatisfied mob led by miners raided the family’s property, demanding a fair share for their efforts.
A disturbance occurred between the two sides at the height of the tensions. The fissure opened to reveal a misty portal that awed the present. A moment later, mumbles of surprise and terror sounded through the crowd when a sizeable pale beast emerged from it, carrying a familiar face on its broad back. Instantly, the mob retreated to a safe distance, perplexed and hypnotized by the beauty of an ethereal-looking creature that observed them with intelligent eyes. Struck by the moment’s intensity, hovering between excitement and fear, Voltero’s family rushed out to meet him. Politely, Voltero rejected their beckoning to climb down and join them once again. Instead, he stood his ground in front of the people, stating his desire for their troubles to be recognized.
Whether it was the feeling of awe at the sight of Voltero and his majestic mount or a sudden change of heart, Voltero’s family realized the truth behind their son’s words. If they were to have any hope for progress in such dire times, their fortune needed to be the fortune of all. After receiving a promise from prospectors that their needs shall be met, the mob was at ease, obliging to keep the interests of the Ernack society above their own for the sake of prosperity and fighting off the terror of the remnants of the Crystal Scourge. Voltero’s vision was clear. Leaving other Ernack heroes to wield their weapons in the face of danger, he chose a path of pacifism and love for all his followers. In synergy with the mystic spirit, he identified as Voltero Envisaetherius — a balance of two equal parts, healing everything it touches and preaching wisdom beyond the compounds of the existing plane.
But make no mistake. Facing danger is not what Voltero shies away from. Under his wing, Ernack troops made significant progress driving the Scourge Monsters away. The efforts to rebuild the Ernack society were greeted with great approval and gratitude, earning the family and their pride and joy of a son some well-deserved loyalty and a sizeable following needed to change the tide of war. The word has it that Voltero Envisaetherius are yet to present their true strength. With the Scourge Monsters continuing to evolve, maybe we are destined to see this majestic manifestation of their abilities.
But what could they be?