At first, there was silence...and then the song began. Slowly at first, faint and halting. It called out to the heavens and the stars opened their eyes. It called forth a great fire and the fire divided itself into three, and each portion was given a name. The Great Sun, the Rose Sun and the Dying Sun. Around them, a world formed and deep underground was a miracle. The Crystal. The bright, beating heart of the world.Raunip
Have you ever wondered how the world of the Dark Crystal came to be? This issue goes over the origins of Thra and Aughra, mother to all, who teaches the Gelflings about life and death. Aughra later has a son, Raunip, and begins charting the stars and suns around Thra. Through her charts, Aughra predicts the coming of the Star-beings, who bring great change to the world.
Chapter 1: A Tale Well ToldEdit
"Wish not for treasures you can hold. No gleaming jewels, bright and gold. For finer still than pearl or gold. The treasure of a tale well told."
The storyteller asserts that everything is part of an endless unfolding tapestry woven by time and hemmed by memory and that one must learn the stories of the past to know the present and grasp the future. Once the last sun sets, they begin the story.
In the beginning there is silence and then the song begins. It calls forth a great fire which divides into the Great Sun, the Rose Sun and the Dying Sun. The world of Thra forms around them and deep underground is the heart of the planet: the Crystal.
Some time later, having felt the planet's longing, the Crystal creates Aughra, who travels the width and breadth of Thra and bonds with every stone, river, plant and beast. She becomes most devoted to the humble Gelfling, who share their dream of dreamfasting with her. She uses this to teach them what she knows of the wonders and perils of Thra, as well as the reality of death.
In time, the Gelfling Clans grow and thrive and learn to fend for themselves. Peace and harmony reign on Thra and Aughra turns her gaze skyward. She uses her knowledge of the suns to predict the first Great Conjunction, which she knows will change everything.
Chapter 3: Strange and Distant StarsEdit
As the centuries pass, Thra remains peaceful and harmonious. Aughra is gifted a son named Raunip, but spends much much of her time preparing for the Great Conjunction. Raunip confides in his friend Tavra the fear he has of the changes the Conjunction will bring, but she assures him that their lives will remain happy.
The Great Conjunction occurs and the three suns shine upon the Crystal. As Aughra gazes upon it, one of her eyes is burned out. Eighteen UrSkeks appear and heal Aughra's wound, but are unable to restore her eye. She considers it a small price to pay for the radiance she witnessed.
Raunip is skeptical of the UrSkeks, who assure them that they come in peace and promise many peerless gifts. Aughra welcomes them and they reveal that their own world has a powerful Crystal like Thra's and that they traveled through as it called to them during the Conjunction. Tavra is dazzled by their beauty, but Raunip remains unconvinced.
The UrSkeks sing to the mountains to construct the Castle of the Crystal in which they house the unearthed Crystal. They award the Gelfling gifts of culture, knowledge and enlightenment with which their race spreads its reach far and wide across the face of Thra. To Aughra, they give a great observatory, in which she spends much of her time examining the sky and other worlds.
As the years pass, Tavra has children and grandchildren, eventually growing old and sick. On her deathbed, she calls for Raunip. As they reminisce over the fun they had during her youth, Raunip feels guilty that he stopped coming to see her. She tells him that he was her first friend and she will always remember him, even beyond their world.
Raunip is approached by an UrSkek and he tells them that he can see the darkness within them that Aughra cannot. The UrSkek commends Raunip for being clever, remarking that he has something of his father in him after all. Raunip, who has no knowledge of his father, is intrigued by this.