Ozchidai was alone. He didn't even know if he existed or not. There was only the mind. The mind imagined, and gave birth to a self, having consistency. Ozchidai continued to think, his mind growing hot with the friction of contemplation.
Ozchdai lay with his eyes closed. Between head and breast an ardor burned within him, like water seething in silence. Above him, waves crested, the waters flowing ceaselessly against his warmth, the hidden flame. Ozchdai did not know the meters, but still sensed something in his psyche. He saw a chant, reached it, was burned by it, and let it out, and saw what was needed.
Ozchdai bent into himself, gathering power. "Settle down," Ozchdai told himself. "Needs a solid base."
He took shape, and did become a small thing. Something so small, it could not be seen by eye. The thing divided itself, and became two things. Together, they swam in the primordial jelly. They divided once more, and the things became four. This shape did not agree with Ozchdai, and so the four things became three things and one Ozchdai. And Ozchdai saw his brood, regarding them with yearning, watching them drift away in the primordial waters. We call these creatures mikros
, the miniscule.
The Progenitor drifted, wanting to take shape once again, and reached into the mantra, and took a new form. Crust enveloped his tailed body, sensitive whiskers sprouted from his jaws, eight sharp legs formed, black beady eyes in his translucent shell. Deep within him formed a womb, and he did stir his own seed to mix with his own eggs, and laid them forth in the waters. The eggs hatched, emerging shiny and new, their own shells half-formed. Again, the form disagreed with him, and Ozchdai evicted from it. He still did not know what to name them, but they are to us the shrimp.
He reached again, and took another shape. This time it was oblong, covered in scales, slits along his throat to breathe in the water, and a powerful tail to propel in the depths. Upon our table is one of his descendants, the fish.
Ozchdai sensed he had a companion, a second being within him. It was his accompanying being, the female form, Kaio. He looked within himself, and let her rise like a continuous stream of milky-white liquid from his mouth, without beginning or end. Ozchdai felt a strange feeling, and swam towards her. Shrinking, Kaio mimicked Ozchdai, taking the same shape. From her womb went forth the eggs, resting upon a stone. Pride and the desire to prove himself filled him, and he shot forth his seed, to mingle with the eggs, which hatched and grew, only to disappear.
Kaio, her duty done, shifted back to the liquid, and mixed with the waters. Ozchdai, jealous and angered at her leaving, tried to swallow her up, but could only drink a small portion of her. Kaio rebelled against him, raging against his stomach. Ozchdai shifted to ease the pain once more, and shed his scales. His gills fell off, blubber growing over his now-cold skin, and grew to gigantic proportions. Power filled his veins, and he burst to the surface, and sang with all his joyous heart. We call this creature a whale.
After singing himself into exhaustion, Ozchdai fell on the beach, unable to move. His flesh sloughed off, becoming countless maggots of blubber, and swarmed back into the sea to reform, leaving Ozchdai in his shapeless form again. Upon the beach was a lotus leaf, newly fallen. Tired as he was, Ozchdai pushed the leaf out to the water, lay down, and drifted away. When he awoke, he was not alone. Five shimmering presences appeared in his midst, blazing. Before he could even speak, they spoke instead. "You are a god. Concept and shape. We are the Demiurges, power and power and power. What is your name?" they asked.
"I...do not have one."
"Then you are Abahb, existence." "No, that is not who I am." "You are Ihdob, awakening." "No." "Uhdnad, connector." "It does not fit." "Avras, everything." One-by-one, they thrust upon him a name, but each slipped off his intangible form. Finally, "You are Ozchdai, progenitor." They said finally. "Yes, that is what I am."
"Now finish your duties and shape creatures for this world." they said, before turning away. As they hurried away, Ozchdai glimpsed a bright head of tawny waving hair, a white shoulder, a shape that cast a spell in one of the dark-shrouded Demiurges. "Oh, if only she would come back..." he thought. "I would like to join myself to her..." And so the concept lust was created from a god desiring a Demiurge, like steel scraping flint.
In a dusty learing, Ozchdai sat. He reached into the mantra, and generated power. Finally, after nine days and nine nights, he lifted his arms. Upon which light streamed from his armpits, shooting off and burying in the sky, becoming a thousand winged and feathered birds. One alighted on his head, and he let it be his brain. He cut out a section of his heart, and tore that up. He scattered it to the wind and the forest, and they became great cats, clawed and nible and lithe and strong. One small one stalked back to him, mewing, and he let it be his liver. Ozchdai sat on the ground, and sloughed off pieces of his spent skin, the palms of his hands rubbing furiously over his essence-belly, his legs. He gathered a great lump, and from that lump hatched millions upon millions of skittering, flying, hovering insects. A grasshopper jumped on his shoulder and started singing, and he let it crawl in the spaces in his marrow.
And so for a long time Ozchdai took pieces of himself and made new things, unknowingly slowly emptying a vast ocean.
The Demiurges appeared again in the sky, bringing with them his brothers and sisters, unformed. Ozchdai determined to help, resolving to give each of his siblings a gift. After the Demiurges poured sunlight and fire into one and turned to make another, he shot forth an albatross into it, and became the first bowman. In the one they mixed silver sand and dust, he threw a jackal. In the sister they molded the sky and the thorns from, he snuck in the ravens. In the amalgam of stars and fortune, one of his cat's brood. In the mix of herbs and sparks, the butterfly. And so he continued, until he got caught.
The Demiurges, seeing what he did, angrily struck at him, breaking him apart, before absentmindedly turning back to their work.
The world was dense. Ozchdai lay on his back, empty of his essence and feverish. Fire flared in his broken joints, needles filled his marrow. The pain was unbearable. How long would this last? He felt the mantra that sat in his head and its thousands of variations drift away and disappear. He bade farewell to each one, speaking the words aloud. He felt he had run the whole race.
Then someone came to moisten his lips. The firstborn gods returned, each sheepishly wrangling one of his mantras. They had caught as many as they could, but many still escaped. The gods took their own powers, chaining the mantras within Ozchdai's form, finally giving him a coherent shape. But they could not restore him to youth, and so he sits in his forest, an old, bearded, and withered god.