Monday, April 8, 2013

Do you remember Thool's horrible moth people?

Way back in the oughts, The World of Thool blog featured a picture of a terrifying moth man that was some kind of replacement for elves. I would love to show you a picture of it, but I haven't been able to find it for a few years now. That could be because I don't remember any names connected with it. I might have been an illustration from an Arthur Machen story.

Do you remember it? Could you help me find it, pretty please? Thank you!

Oh, here's what I plan to do with it:

"Elves" in their natural state are horrid (to human eyes) moth people who want to EAT YOUR DREAMS. They appear to us as fair, graceful and musical because each and every one of them (it's an ancient cultural tradition--and 1000-year-old people can be so conservative) projects a narcissistic image of their idealized self through a kind of glamour stored in a (very carefully secreted) charm, which is of course fueled by moonlight and mortal dreams. Should the charm ever run dry, you'll catch a glimpse of the elf's true appearance, and things will never be the same.

These horrid moth predators are creatures of Morpheus, god of dreams (so elves may very well choose to look like Cure fans), and as such are able to walk in mortal dreams and pillage them for whatever they like. Dreams themselves are priceless unique jewels, obviously. This is why elves are immune to sleep spells--they just step back out of the dream world like nothing happened.

They explanation for their immunity to ghoul paralysis is similar--a ghoul's attack can only reach the projected image, leaving the elf themself free of the old eaten-alive waking nightmare. They prefer to be on the other side of that equation . . .

This plays on an idea in that Cugel story "Eyes of the Overworld," although it came to me as I was thinking about who it is you talk to when you talk to yourself, and The Last Psychiatrist's writing about our own cultural plague of narcissism. And I should also credit the way my friend Adam played a very haughty elf in my Mutant Earth campaign.

3 comments:

Chris Hogan said...

Was it the Frazetta mothman?

http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee212/kirkultra/frank_frazetta_mothman.jpg

Elves as Slake Moths? Creepy. Top marks.

Aaron Nuttall said...

Afraid that's not it, Chris. It's pretty close, though, except the lovely pastels don't really creep me out. I should have mentioned ehe image I saw on Thool was black and white.

I haven't read Perdido Street Station yet, but I now have more incentive.

Tim Shorts said...

Hey Aaron, could you email me your address at elder_sensa(at)yahoo(dot)com so I can send you a mini manor when they are done.