Scribbled in the margins of the pages and a loose leaf folded into the journal:
The slippery nature of Light defies our ability to quantify it. By some sad twist of logic, we know more of the Darkness than we do the Light we draw on. I have attempted to study with Magnus and Drake during our Wolf hunt to ask them questions about the Light. These are simplified versions of their words.
Magnus, the Storm Caller, defined Light as THE force of Creation. It is the Genesis of Energy, infused into the basic matter of the Universe, from which Life springs. Thus, Light challenges Darkness: Energy and Matter combine to create Motion, the necessary ingredient of Life, as opposed to Entropy. Through extreme application, this Energy can destroy, but this is also a need of Life: the rhythm of Death and Renewal. Death is not Darkness: Entropy is Darkness. Energy v. Entropy is the true battle.
Drake, the Void Walker, defined Light as the need of the Universe to Make Itself. That is, by definition of Existing, the Universe must express that Existence, and Light is that Expression. It is the tangible – if not quantifiable – proof that Existence is Real, and not merely an illusion. For example, if the Universe were a person, the Void is that Person, but the Light is that Person saying “I think, therefore I Am!” I admit that this theory is more esoteric than I am comfortable with. Nor am I sure I have understood it correctly.
For my part, I see Light as the Result, rather than the Cause, of Existence. It is a building block of our perception, certainly, but not its cornerstone: if you shut out the lights in a room, does that room and its contents cease to exist? No. Only our perception changes. Thus Light is an extension and not the purpose of Reality. Which brings me to the nature of Darkness…
End of Page
A letter, or transcript of a message, tucked between the pages of the journal:
I hope this message finds you in good health when you return. In answer to your question, I do not hate the Vex so much as I fear them: as 1 artificial intelligence viewing another, their abilities far surpass my own, my command of the Light aside. But that is not the reason I believe the Vex may represent the final end of the Light, even more so than the Taken (Traveler forbid the Vex ever master the power of the Taken King!). Allow me to explain:
First, we must do away with this idea that we cannot understand the Vex. On the contrary, I believe the motive of everything in the universe, possessed of sufficient energy and matter, can be understood – note that intelligence does not come into play here, for this is something more fundamental than that. All things have 2 traits in common: survival and propagation. From the lowliest amoeba to the oldest tree, personal survival and the continuation of their own kind is a need written deeper than DNA, and only when they conflict will they choose between those motives. Even galaxies move and combine, destroying and creating new stars and constellations.
Secondly…allow me to use an analogy: take a rubber band in your hand, the kind you bind those old books with in your library. Have it? Crumple it in your hand. Now, take it and stretch it out until it almost breaks. Then, let it go and watch it snap together, back to that crumpled shape. Do it again. You have seen, in microcosm, the life-cycle of the universe: energy applied to matter, expanding out, until it snaps back from resistance. Again and again, over uncountable stretches of Time.
What does this have to do with the Vex? If simple minds like ours can through crude analogy understand the eventual end of the universe, what must a powerhouse intelligence like the Vex see and understand? And if driven by the need to survive, what lengths would they go to in order to survive when the band snaps back together?
Obviously the first step would be to simulate the probable outcomes. That would necessitate processing power so vast as to require energy on a scale our species has never needed – from what Power could this be drawn? And, once this simulation was being run, would anyone who enters it understand that it was not real? That is what I believe the Black Garden and the Vault of Glass represent: the simulated possibilities of past, present, future, and out of Time altogether.
The Vex do not control Time: they are racing against it, and they would gladly absorb the Universe to stop it forever, even if meant submitting to a Power they cannot understand. The Vex are literally playing out the oldest story in the book, with the oldest Question: How do I cheat Death?
Light be with you,
End of Transcript
As you read, you feel a small lump in the binding of the journal. Turning it over, you notice a ragged seam on the edge of the lump. You pick at it, and a small data chip falls out. Plugging it into a compatible device, the following audio transcript plays…
Therapist: You are very quiet this session. I don’t think I have seen you like this since you first started coming here.
Silence for 63 seconds. Background noise is audible, what might be traffic.
T: What happened on the Dreadnought? When you called you said you had seen her again. I thought you meant a fellow Guardian. What did you mean?
Morc-35: The Wizard.
T: The Wizard you called – shuffling of papers – Skadi?
M35: Not my name for her. You can thank my comrades for that.
T: Naming things gives us power over them: it helps us define them, set borders on their existence. A nameless thing, or something that has its name hidden, takes on a greater aspect in our minds than it should. This is part of the reason cultures throughout Earth’s history have placed great value on people’s names.
M35: I am an Exo. I can calculate the abilities of a Wizard. I know the average distance they stay off the ground, the amount of damage a bolt of Arc energy from their claws can do, the average number of Thrall and Acolyte spawn they have at their disposal-
T: And none of that changes the fact that you were afraid of her. Who can blame you after the incident at the Seeder? It is the whole reason you sought therapy in the first place – a brave decision, and unusually self-aware for an Exo. Many of your people do not acknowledge the human aspect of their intelligence.
M35: You speak of her as if she is in the past tense.
T: Is she still alive?
Silence, lasting 9 seconds.
M35: I do not know.
End of Transcript
The next page is full of scribbles, made in a hurried manner, as if the writer could not get them down fast enough…
Pay attention: I understand now. I finally understand the truth I have been chasing. The Vex, the Darkness, all of it…
For weeks I have been watching the Vex and the Cabal adapt their tactics to the Taken. These Taken are but remnants of the larger idea, cast offs and vestiges now that the King is dead. But they hold the key to the Darkness and the Light. The Vex are the window into the answer of everything: because we created them.
Listen! Do not ignore this! We made them! Consider this: the Observer Effect says that we change the result of something by the mere act of observing it. Think about those implications.
Next, consider the fact – the FACT – that mankind, in their Golden Age, created simulations, simulations of the world and how it might be. In fact, it has been posited that all reality is a simulation inside a simulation ad infinitum.
Do you see? Let me explain further.
If reality is a simulation, it stands to reason that we could create our own simulation of reality. But! But, by the mere act of creating that simulation and observing it, you alter it, ever so slightly…That simulation would, in turn, create a simulation of reality. Simulation within simulation within to an infinite number, and each would observe the simulation they created, and thus make tiny, tiny alterations to it. But they reach down into infinity, each change, until finally, if you followed it far enough, the simulations at the bottom would resemble nothing like the ones at the top. The very fundamental rules of the simulation would be different. It would look nothing like the real world, the reality that created the first simulation.
Now, one more posit: what if, just WHAT IF, the rules were SO DIFFERENT at the very bottom that the denizens of the simulation not only realized they were in a simulation, but thought of a way to PROJECT THEMSELVES INTO REALITY BEYOND THEIR SIMULATION?
You think it mad? But if you can observe the simulation you created, and it can observe you in return, is there not a causal relationship? Is there not a connection? Is there not…a gate?
The Vex are that: a simulation, a consciousness removed many, many times from our own reality, and they in turn have opened the way to THE REALITY, the TRUTH that is the DARKNESS and the LIGHT. We are in Reality, the first level – or very close to it – the Vex worship the elements, the forces of this reality they have pushed through the many layers to a reality far removed from their own. The Darkness and the Light are the beginning.
And if they can step through the bounds of the simulation, through these many layers of reality, is it so odd they can step through Time? So the race is on: to stop Time, to defeat it, and save the REALITY they have found so that they might live forever. And we, the instruments of the Traveler and the Light, took Its power and created the endless loop that birthed the Vex. Thus they must destroy us, because if we created them…we can end them forever.