The E.R.G. slid down the road towards the bridge, with silent prayer and awe-filled jubilation being showered upon them and their cargo from their left and right. The road behind was empty, and up until the bridge was clear as well. They made their way there unobstructed, and Attendant met them and began unwrapping the leathers.
From a static-filled projection of the road about a mile away, and the dumbstruck crowds (or was it a still image?), a metalic dart shoots off at an angle over Exemplar's helmeted head and embeds itself into a decorative pillar. Exemplar retaliates in measured doses by blasting away at his foe with supersonic projectiles disrupting the psychic field and shredding the innards of the thing to pieces. And yet it skids onwards across its layer of air, the two remaining pilots sneering into his mind, as the field's illusion shattered away and reformed as an image that might awaken something to ride alongside his pure battle lust.
Septumvirate, with their perspective from the pavilion railings, could see this play out in motions almost too chaotic to predict with perfect accuracy. The pillar getting struck was simply an outlier, and the irrational symbolism that could be extracted from this minor event (almost as interesting as the fight itself, in the proper context) was laughable. And then they sensed something else even more unlikely and possibly symbolic, both from the damaged screen below and the event playing itself out live; and parts of Septumvirate couldn't quite decide what sort of probabilities were involved, and what sort of orders of magnitude would be involved with comparing the anomalousness these two events.
Surtr's winners were arguing amongst themselves for the prize when they, along with the scorched losers and all else assembled at his camp turned their attention to the telepegraphic screen broadcasting directly above. The beast shaman's second and tertiary heads looked up of their own accord out of curiosity, and the warlord soon found himself staring. Discussion of the day's prize would be postponed, almost certainly.
Bargainer knew the act of inspecting goods before a deal went down. Likewise, the unwrapping of a gift. Furthermore, logistics, transportation, all of that, on some level or another. He could see that Attendant was not licking his lips, or taking pleasure from this act. Each worn and engraved leather stripped off of the thing was simply knot after knot to be undone calmly and with a focus that showed no real excitement for what was nestled inside. But why would it? This was part of the ritual, and Attendant may be the only one who had the complete schedule of events. The word 'manifest' might've been more appropriate, if only to keep up the mercantile theme. But what was unveiled was certainly a curiosity, and certainly the most valuable thing he'd ever personally dealt with.
Only steps away from the bridge now, vision obscured by the crowds only slightly, Pontifex saw the truth laid bare as the last of this focal point of emotion and herd-behavior was brought out of its protective coverings. Its mystery could be related to. Its status and renown aspired to. But nearer proximity to these aspects only brought envy- its existence was, after all, proof of even greater mysteries beyond this world.
The exact state of the crowd, the assembled inhabitants of the world, was impossible to describe just right, given the finite nature of any vocabulary.
The Black Artifact was composed of a dark mottled iron hammered smoothly. From the central flat disc which was about a forearm's length in diameter, it had sides that curved upwards into a slight incline (roughly a 45 degree angle) and were about an finger's length tall. At the outer edge, there was a protrusion, about a foot long, that tapered in the middle and rounded out at the end, which had a small hole in it. This was held in place by three stubby, circular rods that were threaded through both it and the central disc's side itself.
The presence of the E.R.G. could only do so much to keep the crowds from madly rushing towards the Black Artifact. Though many did try, the white-clad dancers moved in synchronized line patterns to hold them back.
(Check your PMs.)