In this final installment in a three-part series investigating what the inhabitants of the Ascension Epoch universe actually know about the secret history and strange phenomenon of their world, we we examine what is generally known about the myriad worlds of the Empyrean and the aeons-long celestial war that holds the earth under siege.
- The existence of a “hollow earth” type environment (Pellucidar) is known from personal experience, photographic evidence, and the capture of flora and fauna native to the inner world. Though its existence is generally accepted by science and the public, there is no real consensus on how to explain it. Many just accept that the earth must be hollow, but others (rightfully) point out that every other means we have of confirming this seems to say the opposite. Getting to Pellucidar is dangerous and unreliable. There are some fringe suggestions that Pellucidar is actually another world or even a pocket universe accessible through some sort of subterranean “discontinuity” (a Travel Node). Only the Compass Society and its allies know this to be true, and have a reliable means of getting there. They keep this secret to prevent the same sort of looting and destruction that was visited upon Maple White Land in the early 20th century.
- It is accepted that there are humans, dinosaurs, and other extinct animals on Pellucidar. The Mahars are also known, and in fact some bodies have been brought back to the surface, including a mummified Mahar that is on display at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh. While it is accepted that the Mahars are sapient and have a civilization, it is not generally believed that they rule over large populations of enslaved humans.
- Oz and some other lands in Nonestica have been recorded in clinical literature, but were considered to be the inventions of a psychologically troubled Kansas farm girl. When Ozma traveled to earth in the guise of the Emerald Witch, however, Roundtable, the Compass Society, and the Challenger Foundation became aware that it was a real place, hidden somewhere in the Empyrean. It took them a number of years to investigate, however, since they did not immediately take Ozma seriously.
- The existence of the broader Empyrean is tentatively suggested by a few theories of physics, but any solid details are known only to high gnosis groups, particularly the Void Knights, Compass Society, the Challenger Foundation, and the like. Little awareness of the Empyrean, the Rampart, or Travel Nodes have penetrated to the general public.
- Only a few individuals on earth know of the Arizona-Mars Travel Node used by the John Carter raid – the upper echelon of Void Knights, the Promethean, and other founders of the Compass Society. All of the other people involved were long dead and records, such as they existed, were either lost or sequestered in the wake of the Martian War.
- Thanks to the testimony of Janus, the Compass Society and the Promethean have heard about the Exalted, the Imagineer, and the creation of the Olympians. Whether they trust him is a different matter.
- The War in Heaven, the Great Interdict, and related events are not even guessed at by the general population. Even the Signalman was not fully aware of the extent of what went on. While various religions, particularly Christianity, have some belief in the underlying reality, the understanding is very superficial. Only the Exalted, those in direct contact with the Macrobes or those who have battled them have some inkling of this aeons-long war. This is major sanity-loss stuff.
- Even the Eldila and the Sidereals do not know why the Great Interdict (the metaphysical barrier erected around the earth, limiting the flow of aether) is weakening. Breaches in the barrier were first noticed around the time of Christ’s crucifixion (marking the beginning of the current cycle of celestial time known as the Ascension Epoch); it has virtually collapsed since the mid 19th century, enabling the re-emergence of metahumans. Many believe it heralds a new phase in the War in Heaven, or even its end.