Planar Primer #5: Pit, Sea, And Void
Outside the cosmic cycles of life and death lie the places where power began. Below the the Divine Sanctuaries of mortal souls and their faith fueled deities lies a pit of chaos and destruction. High above, there is an endless night sky full of stars and swirling nebulas light. At the edges of it all, beyond that which is comprehensible, sits a bleak darkness where all things come together and all things end.
The Endless Abyssal Pits
Not all souls in the Rivers of the Dead find their sanctuaries. Despite the endless work of psychopomps and the guidance of divine beings, the Rivers run afoul of cliffs and rifts where they fall in screaming despair into the pits below. These are the Endless Abyssal Pits formed at the juncture of the elemental realms and carved out by the darker nature of powerful beings. Before their were faiths of any morality there was power and as mortal lives were created, power corrupted and twisted them. Like a hole it dug into the hearts of mortal and elemental being alike and as it did the Pits where bored into reality. As the divine were born and built their own refuges, the primordials fought against them. But this only fueled the destructive nature of many in power and allowed the Abyss to grow ever-deeper. Most scholars agree that there is no terminus to the Abyssal Pits and that, as controlling forces grow, it will ever get deeper and its lords more powerful.
The Wondrous Seas of the Astral Expanse
Day or night, visible or not, the sky above the Divine Sanctuaries is full of glittering stars of far off worlds and realities. This is the Astral Seas, gateway to all realms, but that name undermines its true scope. Nearly infinite in size, the Astral Expanse is many thousands of seas leading to the countless worlds of the multiverse and containing portals to every plane, known or unknown. Roaming its tides are magical ships, dead gods, and wandering horrors. Pirates lurk around every nebula and explorers seek the artifacts of kingdoms from the beginnings of time. It is a beautiful place connected to all things, but among the most dangerous.
The Velveteen Curtain of the Void
Go too deep into the Etherium and there are no more tributaries of the River Styx. Dig deep enough in the Pits of the Abyss and there is not even anything left to destroy. Fly to the edge of a galaxy and you will feel its tendrils. In all these places, at the edge of all things, lies the Infinite Void. It is there that all things become one and all things cease. It is a space between spaces, where meaning losses itself and forms disintegrates. The most recognizable thing is utterly alien and unfathomable. The horrors there not only fail to care about mortals or their gods but barely recognize their existence. They are less than ants beneath the boot of god among gods. They obey rules which do not exist and the truths of their existence and lives drive normal beings to madness.