Enderal:Myths and Legends: The Gargantuan Lizard
Volume 4: The Mountain in the Desert
In younger times, the mothers from Duneville told their children of the “Mountain in the Desert.” This, they hoped, would purge their children of their youthful boldness, so challenging to those who seek to stay true to the path, especially in their early years.
The words set down here concern a wild mage who retreated to the Powder Desert, the better to surrender himself fully to Entropy — and to pull otherworldly beings from different realities into our own. It began with hair and scales, then full limbs, and, in the end, entire beasts. He bore no interest in humans, and cared nothing for spectral beings or the Lost Ones.
Following a few rainy seasons — which the reader may consider akin to winters in our Heartland — he had grown so skillful in the use of forbidden magic that the summoning of animals from the desert lost its appeal. Those alternate realities, he found, were too similar to our own mundane plane. Though he witnessed great cats unlike anything found in our world, and gazed upon richly-colored, gangly birds, or observed jet-black Bone Rippers, in time the wild mage came to regard the exotic beasts with a studied eye. He designed special cages for the creatures he summoned, and took to observing them closely. The mage watched closely his specimens, sketching what he saw; and, satisfied with his drawings, returned the beasts to their own time and place. Research, you see, was his singular passion.
This wild mage, whose name remains forever lost to time, found himself adrift in the sea of endless realities, unable to orient himself, and so sought after a plane where time itself ran separate from our own. Quite to his surprise, the mage succeeded one day in anchoring his mind to a far-off world. Thrilled as he was by what he saw through the veil of distorted haze in that exotic plane, he soon managed to pull the first being he discovered into our reality.
The beast proved a towering lizard vast as a battering ram, with menacing horns and a gigantic armored plate on the back of its skull. In his haste, the wild mage had failed to register the sheer size of the lizard, and soon paid the price for his hubris. When the portal from the distant world appeared and spat the gargantuan beast into its meager cage, the bars burst wide with a mighty crack like thunder. Perhaps feeling torn from its natural place and time, or perhaps terrified of the rending sound of the cage, the great monster raged at the wild mage — and drove one of its murderous horns through his eye.
Thus ends the story, and the life, of the wild mage. It is said that even today vagabonds might paw through the twisted remnants of the rusted cage, and find there traces of a skeleton weathered away by time and desert winds. Of the monstrous lizard from out of time, however, nothing remains, save the whispers which still breathe life into the ancient legend. They call it the Mountain in the Desert.