TALANTEHUT, Wielder of Scales
Fourth of the Demiurges, otherwise known as ‘the Shunned One’, ‘the Bringer of Balance’, and ‘the Wielder of Scales’.
Appearance: Talantehut has appeared in various passages of the Mythologia Elyden and is described in apocryphal texts, in which she is depicted in similar fashion as as a feminine figure, her form hidden beneath heavy layered robes. Her head bears the features of two conjoined faces, one half skeletal, the other pallid. On that dichotomous face are three eyes, each different to the other – a normal human eye that sits in the living side of her face, a black eye that sits in the middle of her forehead, shared by the two halves of the face, and a third empty eye-socket in the skeletal half of her face. She is said to carry her third eye in one of her hands.
She is commonly depicted carrying scales in which are held a skull and foetus, symbolising death and life, respectively.
Characteristics: despite their diverging stories, the Demiurges are said to have retained some form of link with each other. Talantehut is the exception, depicted as an outcast. Talantehut was chosen to be an arbiter through no desire of her own and was forced to abandon her children, who faltered in her absence. Due to this she is considered a tragic paragon of duty and a mirror for the responsibilities of adulthood at the expense of personal wants and desires.
Other Forms: some passages of the Mythologia Elyden describe her as a skeletal figure or wearing the garb of a plague-doctor, though they are few, and it is not thought that she enjoyed, or was even allowed to disguise herself, possibly as part of her judiciary role amongst the Two-and-Twenty.
Children: the children of Talantehut are the valthas. Shunned by their mother soon after their creation, they were left rudderless and never attained the heights of other mortal races. They are said to have mingled with the children of Abufihamat and Vorropohaiah, losing what traits they once possessed. Their descendants are thought to have created the Godheads in the Umbra Sokhar.
Known Scions: Aiu, bearer of life; Dalak Hothabbir, arbiter of the dead; Pathea, the uncaring.
Relationships: following her bestowal of the role of Wielder of Scales, Talantehut became aloof and distant from her siblings, maintining a distance and observing their actions and interactions from afar.
History: even in the early days of the Demiurge’s tenure of Elyden, Talantehut was withdrawn. She took pleasure in creating places of secluded beauty and would spend much time alone in these places, enjoying their tranquillity.
She shaped little following the First Age of Shaping, seeing that the goal of the Demiurges had been accomplished.
However, her siblings were blind to this and continued shaping despite the instructions of The Shaper. She tried to stop them but few if any heeded her wisdom.
The Demiurges were eventually punished by The Shaper for their hubris, and Talantehut was amongst them. Where some amongst her siblings fought desperately to regain the link with their father, Talantehut was broken by this unjust punishment. She cared little for the valthas that were entrusted to her care and they suffered for it. She forsook shaping entirely and wandered across the lands she had created in a forlorn state, looking for answers to why she was punished for the actions of others.
She was convinced to take part in the Great Conclave, where it was decided the Bridge of Worlds would be created to reforge the Demiurge’s links with The Shaper. Talantehut was against this and left her siblings to their plan, wishing no part of it. Arimaspi, who was also against its creation would later persuade her to help him stop its creation. The Shaper had a similar plan and destroyed the Bridge in its nascence, punishing the Demiurges that were involved.
Talantehut he made an arbiter of the desires and actions of other Demiurges, with the power to stop any who dared defy its will again.
Little more than a curse, she found herself a changed being, unable to draw strength from her children, unable to dream or desire. She lost all emotion and became a tool of The Shaper, its will made manifest.
She appeared to Achaiah in her hour of need, ‘saving’ her from the advances of Ashterath, and cursing the serapis for their genocidal wars and destroying Ashterath, banishing him to the sky.
Ashterath was but a pawn of Rachanael, though and she would confront him on the Mound Stygia, and laid down her edict – his children, the plagi, were to be scattered and he would relinquish his power. Yet Rachanael, by then powerful beyond measure, rebuked her words, throwing her down and breaking her body upon the Mound.
Talantehut had been broken, but not destroyed by this.
Seeing the depths that Rachanael had descended to, she bore it upon herself to machinate an end to his wickedness. During this time Rachanael would be temporarily defeated by Allaishada, at which point the plagi were scattered as per her original edict.
Dopellanis and Achaiah had received visions of Rachanael’s eventual downfall at the moment of Talantehut’s battle with Rachanael. Talantehut learnt this and worked meticulously in the shadows to collect any information she could, consulting those who would aid her.
The details of their visions, together with the rest of the knowledge she learnt, were collected in a single tome designed to aid those in the future who may one day witness a Rachanael’s return.
This work was called the Scripture of Shadow and was kept safely hidden in the island of Maleth, awaiting the arrival of one who would bring about the eventual demise of Rachanael. Over millennia there have been various guardians of the Scripture of Shadow who have shaped history to make the visions of Dopellanis and Achaiah reality.
Talantehut would remain as an arbiter of the Demiurges, though as their own power waned and they began to fall into languor, her interventions became and fewer until she disappeared from the extant world.
It is unknown if she too is dead, or if she is just awaiting a time when she is needed once more.