Totem Grotesque


Produced in their thousands and scattered across the globe; the ‘mobile totem grotesque’ served as either a symbol of victory or as a painful reminder of defeat – depending on the territory they travelled through.

Each stone chimera was carefully carved from the ruins of the once great Cathedral of Hope (destroyed during the Octane Leper Crisis). These simple silent statues served only to prolong the memory of that once magnificent building – again, a memory of despair for those that believed in the Cathedral, or of joy for those that longed for its destruction.

The vehicle harnesses power from the cosmic ray funnel (umbrella). A simple navigation computer situated at the top of the ‘balance motor’ pole provides an autonomous means for the device to travel without human direction. Its journey was typically random with only simple error detection built in – but as a penalty of death was carried upon anyone wishing to hinder the machine, it was rare to find a mobile grotesque deliberately blocked on its voyage (unsurprisingly, totem grotesques seen to be experiencing difficulties were quickly helped out by people nearby).

Their numbers have dwindled but several of the mobile totems still roam the countryside lanes. Many now follow their own well worn track in and endless cycle that locals dare not divert them from. The people of Hope, where the cathedral fell, have even embraced three of the grotesques that pass through their town; claiming that the stone statues are living embodiments of the priests that were crushed inside their once great house of god (possibly due to the uncanny likeness they have to 3 of the original gargoyles that were fixed to the side of the building).

Suspicions that the machines were really used for spying on the populace are unfounded. Admittedly, injected within the head of each statue there is a small organic cell computer connected to sensory recording apparatus. And there is evidence that each pole and funnel (umbrella) are easily capable of acting as part of a powerful transceiver. But these capabilities were included only as an afterthought and were never activated.

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