Through some accident, some coincidence, you find yourself in a relatively new corner of the Neocities server facility. You can tell this was built just recently; not a single floor tile out of place, and fresh bands of red and blue paint across the walls. Absolutely pristine, and yet, oddly empty. You passed a custodian on the way in, but like a corpse before the flies descend, it's completely still. You duck into one of the rooms, hoping to find a technician, an electrician—someone to talk to. Nothing in here, though, just the whir of machines, hosting thousands of instances of new and dated worlds alike. You figure system hum is better than silence and wander about the room, admiring the engineering.

That's when things get a bit strange. In the corner of the room, in a pile of tan blankets, you notice an orange pile of fluff with huge ears and a thick, yellow mane. It rolls over onto its back and stares at you with radiant green eyes, as big and ensnaring as a hedge maze. You snark about the mangy thing needing a haircut, and it hisses. A nearby table hosts some kind of encyclopedia already open to a page in the middle; the word "CODEX" is stitched into the leathery front.

"Read it," the orange fox impels you. "If you can read, I mean."


Capy drew this one and I still love it

[1] Mariteaux is one of Elinar's six provinces, bordering the country of Adwolen to the north. It is the second-most populous province, after Auberlimar, hosting 15% of Elinar's total population in its capital city, Whalecrest. Much of Mariteaux's industry is centered around the export of seafood and magical studies, and Whalecrest's long, studied history and maritime climate make it especially attractive to tourists.

[2] Mariteaux (stylized as "mariteaux") is also the pseudonym of a Flareon from northeast Kanto. Contrary to popular belief, he is not French, and in fact, knows no French at all. He does, however, make levels and mods for various Quake-based video game engines, writes for the Valve Developer Union about these game engines, and occasionally makes music under yet another assumed name. Fascinated by strange shapes, noise, distortion, and minimalism, mariteaux has an obsession with creation, no matter how weird and off-kilter the results.

"Hey, stick around a bit, maybe," the Flareon calls, his voice softer than before. "It gets awful lonely around here. I've got some stuff you might like lying around too." He wanders over to you and shakes out his mane, as if to make a point.