"Oh my God!"
This scream came from Lur the Jealous as he peered at the physical world from his All-seeing Tree, whose exposed heartwood displayed a phantasmal image of seven dwarves contemplating a newly-flooded section of farm-rock. He reached the length of his arm into the tree, passing through the woody trunk which rippled like a disturbed glass of milk. His fingers emerged clutching a bloodshot eyeball that pulsed like a beating heart.
Moving with deific speed, he was now in a grand chamber covered in symbols so secret only three mortals in the entire multiverse would recognize them. There were no doorways in any of the pillared walls, and in the center of the room was a long crystalline table surrounded by a number of comfortable-looking leather chairs, the exact number of which seemed to change with each passing instant. Lur threw the curious eyeball at the ceiling. The collision released a dazzling explosion of a color not possible to describe.
The other gods were already answering his mental summons. One by one the deities of Aluonra manifested themselves directly into the chairs, of which there were now several hundred, with some floating dozens of feet in the air, occupied or not. As there were no mortals present, there was no risk in driving anyone insane, so they were each in their true shape, formless but not without form.
"This had better be a public apology, Lur," said Kigok Pokercooks immediately, though it was less a statement than a congealed projection of annoyance.
Lur pointed skyward, and the gods' eyes all followed the seven dwarves now pictured on high. "What the hell is wrong with dwarves?" someone called out. It was Otik the Blueness of Flickers.
"What indeed," added Kigok, who was known to be an attention-seeker. "What needs to happen before they avoid such a place?"
"That," said Lur, while he continued to point and the ceiling took on the appearance of a bald dwarf with a tiny nose, "is not who it should be. It's the Sorcerer, he's behind this. I don't know how he convinced them, but it looks like they're trying for a new settlement there."
"Not to mention the collapse of improbability," intoned Bengel, who was associated with lust and depravity.
"Oh, let's mention it!" cried out Kigok. "It's been a real thorn in my side."
"Shall we review?" Zimesh, whose followers envisioned him as a rotting corpse, pulled a scroll out of thin air and slid a long bony finger along the parchment, and sat up as his chair lifted high above the rest.
Lur protested. "Like I said a thousand and six times, that --"
"You resurrected a mortal who had been to the Lost Library." Zimesh gave Lur a stern glance.
"I figured he'd be off to the Abode of Unending Pleasure. I told him exactly how to find it!"
"A mortal already guilty of bodysnatching. You sent him BACK to Aluonra with augmented knowledge when you FOUND him reading in the Library." This was supplied by Nifih the Pond Grabber, who never stopped smiling.
"Look, he needed to go back, to prevent the Conflict of Atrocities. It would have opened the Seal!" Lur had already explained all of this, and was growing impatient.
"It could have been closed again," glowered Egath Seasonlord, "but crumbling as it is now, it's almost useless. And what has already come out..." He trailed off, giving an involuntary shiver.
Anan the Cave Fish God spoke for the first time that century, "Given our last attempt to subdue the Sorcerer in Limbo, it's unlikely he'll return there by choice."
"It's not just him," added Limul, the Goddess of Metal. "Half of the dead and displaced aren't getting to Limbo either." The image on the ceiling flickered to show those lucky souls that found other worlds and bodies to possess, casting now-homeless souls to the aether. Those less fortunate were shown presently wandering the cavernous ruins of Battlefailed, halls of the earthbound damned, in monstrous bodies not fit for happiness.
"You messed up, Lur," said a young god named Thoth, who at six thousand years was barely old enough to speak.
"I know, I know," Lur held up a hand dismissively. "I'm sorry, alright? We can all blame me after we've fixed up the cosmos."
The other gods looked among themselves, then all of them looked back at Lur, who was suddenly pinged by the godly equivalent of nervousness.
"This has been a long time coming," said the hundreds of voices in chorus.
If Lur had a heart it would have been pounding. They had entered The Union without him. It meant only one thing.
Ar-en-ji, thought the gods loudly.
'I can explain,' Lur almost began, but thought better of it. "I can explain!" he said anyway, and marveled at saying precisely what he'd specifically decided not to say.
"Irrelevant. Your action's consequences cannot be ignored. Your fate is sealed." The eyes of the other gods were glowing yellow, brighter and louder until all the room was awash in golden light. Like an elongated thunderclap, a low rumble rose up from the floor.
"Your actions have condemned the innocent and undermined existence. Your mistakes will be fixed for you. You are stripped of godhood, Lur Thiefwitch. Go now and live as one of the mortals you have doomed to extinction." The gods all raised their arms at once. There was a bolt of lightning, a cloud of smoke, and Lur Thiefwitch was gone. The light of the room faded as the eyes of the Gods faded to black. The eyeball fell out of the ceiling with a wet noise and shattered on the ground. The pieces boiled away into nothingness. The room was quiet.
Her face grim, Kigok rose out of her chair. "We must contact the other worlds. And figure out what we can do."