There will be no tricks in this tale. I tell you this so that you can relax. You’ll listen more closely if you aren’t flinching every other instant, waiting for the pratfall. You will not reach the end and suddenly learn I have been talking to my other soul or making a lullaby of my life for someone’s unborn brat. I find such things disingenuous, so I will simply tell the tale as I lived it.
But wait, that’s not a real beginning. Time is an irritation, but it provides structure. Should I tell this in the mortal fashion? All right, then, linear. Slooooow. You require context.
Beginnings. They are not always what they seem. Nature is cycles, patterns, repetition — but of what we believe, of the beginning I understand, there was once only Maelstrom, the unknowable. Over a span of uncountable aeons, as none of us were here yet to count, It churned forth endless substances and concepts and creatures. Some of those must have been glorious, because even today the Maelstrom spins forth new life with regular randomness, and many of those creations are indeed beautiful and wondrous. But most of them last only an eyeblink or two before the Maelstrom rips them apart again, or they die of instant old age, or they collapse in on themselves and become tiny Maelstroms in turn. These are absorbed back into the greater cacophony.