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    death


    Death comes for most in Vazdimet, but the availability of Necromancy has forever altered its meaning. While each culture has developed their own viewpoints and societal norms, one core fact remains.   Even when it arrives unexpectedly, the meaning of death is a choice.

    Treatment

    For many, death has been reduced to an optional state of existence, a choice on whether to pass to The Afterlife and the next phase of existence or to remain on the mortal plane.   Reconstruction clones, often called resurrection clones, are carefully grown with enough of the deceased's genetics to operate as a new body for the soul, allowing a necromancer to bring them back to life once more. Competitive and dangerous jobs often offer this service in benefit packages as a way to retain top talent, particularly in The Freeholds and the Sparnell Confederation. Others return as Afterlife Intelligences, souls bound within a tyrellium crystal serving as the AI behind machinery or a computerized system, an agreement often stipulated in military contracts in exchange for extensive specialized training.   With all the options available to choose from, those with the means or foresight to plan ahead often seek the services of an Afterlife Planners. These specialized therapeutic necromancers assist deceased souls and their loved ones in navigating the complex choices of afterdeath care, from resurrection options to healthy grief management and the art of saying goodbye.

    Prevention

    They say death comes for us all, sooner or later. I intend to put it off as long as possible.
    — vampire-hopeful
      With the advances and capabilities of Curative Magic, the effects of disease, injury, and old age can be relatively contained and even rolled back in some cases. For most this requires repeated trips to the healers, although some have been known to willingly contract vampirism to harness the virus' self-healing effects. Those who decide upon this course of action typically hide their affliction and take efforts not to infect those around them, as many a vampire has been erroneously executed as a spy of the Hydell Order on account of the Order's open acceptance of the virus among the elite. Confederation TAGs are also known to use the disease as a tactical advantage in certain circumstances.   Due to the unpredictability and sometimes even violent nature of death, however, most treatments revolve around the decisions and options available to treat the condition after it has already occurred.

    Cultural Reception

    Each culture within Vazdimet has their own traditions revolving around death, whether that death is their own or that of a loved one. As with all things, these are greatly influenced by not only the generally held beliefs of each faction, but also their readily available options and technologies.  

    Space Defense Legion

    "The Legion believes we were only meant to live this life once. Dad offered to resurrect Mom, but she said no. So he taught me Soul Call instead."
      The technologically skilled Space Defense Legion believes this life is only the beginning of one's journey through the planes of existence, and that while the individual holds a responsibility to learn what they can from each life they must not linger beyond their allotted time in each plane. Funerary preparations include the biocremation of the deceased, and the scattering of their ashes by loved ones as a symbolic gesture of allowing the dead to pass into the next phase of their journey into The Afterlife.  

    Hydell Order

    Felix bit his lip. "Strange question, I know, but... Do you still have his hand?"   Clare looked around at Scout, her eyes wide. "His hand? I... buried it."   "With enough genetic material, we could make him a resurrection clone."   Before Clare could speak, Peter interrupted. "I'm not sure I accomplished enough in life to be deserving of resurrection."
      True Descendants of the Hydell Order are taught from an early age to seek favor from the Ascended Conclave in the hope of being named worthy to join the Ordained Ascended upon death. This selection and ascension is accompanied with great fanfare and pride, with family and friends invited to the ascension ceremony and even provided free transportation.   Those deemed unworthy to join the Ordained are instructed to pass into The Afterlife. While the Ascended Conclave will not fund or sponsor any memorial ceremonies they do permit loved ones to celebrate or grieve as they see fit, provided it does not violate the Natural Order. Simple burials are most common when the deceased's body is available, often in land owned by the family or communal property set aside for this purpose. Cremation is also available, although some stricter sects of adherents frown upon this.   Resurrection is strictly prohibited. Those suspected of being a Resurrected are executed, and their families excommunicated from the Faith for harboring a blasphemy against the Natural Order. This has not stopped the wealthy from the attempts, and many Descendents of lesser means suspect officials of turning a blind eye to the transgressions of those who prove valuable enough to the Order.  

    Sparnell Confederation

    Laughing, Shane touseled her hair. "Within reason. We're not reenacting Five Hundred Fun Ways to Die here. We don't have their budget."   Selva's brows furrowed, leading Shane to launch into a short description of the Sparnelli game holo, where Families competed for recognition and audience favor by offering up members to experience the creative and often painful deaths of their choosing.   Propaganda, Feels sighed. Have to numb everyone to the truths of Confederation ideals.
      Death is a common occurrence within the Sparnell Confederation, and normalized with regular entertainment programs such as the ever-popular Five Hundred Fun Ways to Die game show.   Afterlife care of conscripts and service members within the Sparnell Armed Forces is determined by their superiors, who will often assign an individual to serve the remainder of their contract as an Afterlife Intelligence or a member of a Tactical Assault Group rather than requisitioning a more expensive reconstruction clone. Upon completion of their service the individual's Family will have the authority to choose, although members who have amassed enough glory to satisfy their Family leadership are usually permitted their own consultation with an Afterlife Planner and a vote in the results.  

    Mordena

    <You had plates made out of your own bones?> Max blinked.   <Not just bones. Bone porcelain.> Cal laughed. <And there were bowls, too! Obviously I don't need any of it anymore. You can have them, if you want?>   <Cal...> This was not something he wanted to think about right now. <What am I supposed to do with your leg?>   <Chuck it in the pit and get back here. I'm serious. It's fine.> Cal's voice turned hard <The Grand Navarch wants you in his office, right away.>
      To the Mordena, death is little more than an optional state of existence. Reconstruction clones are available to anyone who desires to return after death, while the Resurrection Center on Janikk will keep a cryonic clone of those expecting to die frequently or soon on hand to minimize wait times.   As a result, standard Mordena Funerary Rites often appear callous and uncaring to the uninitiated. Bodies of the dead are thrown into isolated pits to feed the local wildlife, the cleaned remains picked through later for reusable components. This follows the Ways of the Balance, the spiritual beliefs of Janikk herself which Shane Lawrence and his people agreed to follow in exchange for permission to build a home on the planet.  

    Freeholds and Vardan

    The beliefs of Freehold planets and Vardan clans are much more varied in nature.   Planetary traditions often began with a similar rendition to the beliefs of the Legion, Order, or Confederation, adapted over time to their own resources and altered by the cultures with which they have regular contact. The prevalence of resurrection options is typically determined by the personal technological level of the planet and the financial means of those wishing to return. The nomadic Vardan clans often adapt Afterlife stances similar to those along their trade routes, with space burials and Void mummification as common methods of body disposal.
    Origin
    Natural
    Cycle
    Chronic, Acquired & Congenital
    Rarity
    Common

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    Generic article | May 25, 2022

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    Cover image: Planet Moon Solar by LoganArt

    Comments

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    19 Apr, 2022 16:29

    Love this article - I love the varied nature of the cultural reception of death.

    Master PrincessESH
    Aster Blackwell
    19 Apr, 2022 22:03

    This is fascinating. It's so interesting to explore how death would be viewed in a universe where it's often temporary. I love the variety in how different cultures approach it!

    19 Apr, 2022 22:44

    Thank you so much! This is one of the major themes I love exploring in Vazdimet. There's just so much room to play with it.

    Lead Author of Vazdimet.
    Necromancy is a Wholesome Science.
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