The Works of Theodoric Goodgone

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The Works of Theodoric Goodgone

Postby Nevermet » Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:53 pm

After a traumatic supernatural event of some kind while in the Indian Ocean, British Army officer Theodor Goodgone abruptly retired, moved to New York, and became a member of the Theosophical Society there. Through occult investigations, he became obsessed with the Ven, resulting in two works: the highly respected Hoplology of a Forgotten Root, and the highly controversial The Dream Cacoon and its Rejection.
After doing some digging, I managed to get my hands a copy of both of these. Unfortunately, his writing is very dense due his tendency to write in code and his tendency to drink absinthe while writing. So, beyond merely having these things approved, I'd also welcome constructive criticism regarding my summations and interpretations.

I'll post about Hoplology of a Forgotten Root first, and I'll post about The Dream Cacoon and its Rejection later in the week.
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Re: The Works of Theodoric Goodgone

Postby Nevermet » Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:55 pm

Hoplology of a Forgotten Root
Goodgone used his background in the military and his obsession with the occult to create an in depth look at the martial practices of the Ven in Hopolology. There were several interesting findings within it:

  • Ven notions of style influenced not only dueling, but mass murder as well. Many strategies and tactics were considered bad form, as they suggested taking mass murder more seriously than was appropriate. A good secret general was depicted as one willing to do unsavory deeds, but a dangerous general was one who contemplated how to do those deeds with cold efficiency, without passion.
  • The exception to this was dealing with Orks, who were recognized (at times) as genuine threats to some provinces and who were not worthy of any sign of respect. It was therefore quite acceptable for someone to spend time developing strategies and tactics that were effective at dealing with specific Ork threats. Goodgone argues the spear & shield tactics of thuaka originate from organized Ork killing.
  • Goodgone describes two Suaven he pieced together from several sources. First, Tjorran Adrente was a Suven of Duels, and author of The Swordsman: A Practical Guide to the Art of the Blade, hoping to personalize vengeance to avoid civil war. He embodies violence that supports and is been permitted by the law. Depending on the Ven's perspective, this either makes him an improvement on or a dilution of Falvren Dyr. Second, there is Rejnayr Rusu, the Suaven of Ork-Slaying and to a lesser degree mass murder. Rusu was a hero among the Bear to helped lead her people into the wilds away from the insanity of the Betrayer War. Away from court intrigue, the ideal notions of dueling with style meant little and the need to kill monsters quickly was key.
  • Goodgone claims that swordsmen academies were not only about dueling, but about training the thuakaven of personal guards as well. Similar to the Koryu of Japan, swordsman schools dealt with multiple weapons and had competing philophies on how to act with style and prowess simulteneously. He spends some time in particular discussing Drende Valdachae, which could be translated as “The Wolf Requires Territory” or “The Wolf Expands.” This was a dueling style about ruthlessly controlling space and crowding opponents, with analogous strategies for how to deal with Orks and pirates. For practitioners of Drende Valdachae, the stylish kingdom was one of methodical and inevitable expansion, crushing and assimilating as it went.
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Re: The Works of Theodoric Goodgone

Postby Nevermet » Thu Aug 05, 2010 8:51 am

The Dream Cacoon and its Rejection

For a year or two after Hoplology came out, Goodgone tried to climb the social ranks of the occult community with mixed results. Then he disappeared from the scene for about nine years. When he reappeared, he had written The Dream Cacoon and its Rejection, which made quite a stir among Ven scholars.

While no complete copies remain of the book, the basic thesis is clear: humanity existed during the time of the Sorcerer Kings, who took many of them and adjusted them slightly to create Veth (quicker maturity, etc.), and then created the Ven with the Blooding Ritual. Goodgone argued several very controversial things about the effects of the Blooding Ritual, most with little or no evidence:

  • The Ven were physically more durable than Veth. What Wick (2008) discusses as a matter of Ven literary convention Goodgone takes as fact: Blooded Ven were capable of taking a great deal more punishment than unblooded Veth.
  • Only the Ven could perform blood magic. This was not a matter of law, but rather an arcane consequence of the Blooding Ritual
  • Veth were physically similar enough to humanity that Goodgone believed the Blooding Ritual could work on humans as well.
  • Goodgone argued Solace and becoming a Suaven were products of the Blooding Ritual. Without these Veth aged and died just as humans do.

The Dream Cacoon and its Rejection was supposed to be the first of a two or three volume set. Before he could begin writing The Dream Cacoon Rediscovered he died while searching for pieces of vaq'in cacoons, and a rumored extant Suaven still dreaming loudly somewhere in the South Pacific.


I've mentioned this second work for completeness, but I fully expect it to go in the 'heresy' category rather than truly be accepted by the SRI.
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