Giels Deo, 18, the son of his tribe’s Lead Storyteller (his mother) and Lead Shaman (his father), is heir to a bloodline from the founding members of the Deo Tribe, named after their family. The tribe resides in the Deo forest, which is in the mortal realm—the world between the earth and sky.
Before the story begins, Giels studied oral tradition with his mother for months to become the tribe’s next Lead Storyteller. Most people spend their lives socializing and sustaining themselves by gardening, hunting, and, with the help of computers and the spirit in them, building what they need. Giels desires to be the Lead Storyteller since tribal roles are very few and come with prestige.
Giels leaves his studies to find his assumed betrothed, Cleo. The pair are quickly interrupted by their friend Erikal, who gives Giels a never-before-seen item of legend he’d designed on his computer: a voice recorder. Erikal invites Giels and Cleo to adventure with him, Meritus, and Alana in his new floating vehicle.
At first, Giels declines. Going on the adventure means missing his rehearsal and not demonstrating his skills before the Council of Seven Elders. This would put his Lead Storyteller role at risk.
Giels decides to ask his father, the Lead Elder, for permission to skip the rehearsal, but his father refuses and ominously warns him not to travel in Erikal’s vehicle.
But jealous that Cleo’s first time away from home would be with handsome Erikal, Giels decides to join the group anyhow.
During the journey, Giels learns that his friends’ motivation for the trip is because of a strange message within Giels’ recorder. They believe the god Salihandron, the death escort, gave them a directive to return the recorder to the Wind Cave, where lost souls exit the mortal world. They believe the device contains a spirit or ghost.
Once they arrive at the cave, Erikal decides to test his miraculous vehicle and enters it, which is supposedly impossible.
They end up in a giant tunnel and find a small, empty room where every surface is yellow. Yellow is the most sacred color in the Deo, thus they interpret it as a sign to explore. A door in the room leads to a vast open space defined only by mechwork: pipes, latticework, and machinery.
Giels realizes the Underworld doesn’t match their mythology. Yet, he grows terrified since he believes they’d found the Maze of Azer, where a devil, The Guardian, dwells.
It is then a great, threatening winged beast appears—the Guardian, as Giels feared. It attacks, but a flying craft shows up, and the devil retreats. As Giels flees, he hears a god-like voice in his head telling him that he’s needed in the Underworld.
They escape to the world between the earth and sky and race home.
Now worried the Guardian cursed him with madness, Giels grows angry at Erikal for bringing them into the cave. But Cleo seems invigorated.
Giels returns home in the dark of night and immediately resumes his studies.
The main story is followed by a short chapter, titled Other Voices, which is repeated in full here:
Far, very far, below the Maze of Azer, in an empty, desolate place, a young, immortal woman sat cross-legged. She listened to the thoughts of an ancient one who occupied a space much further below than she. The contents of the man’s mind flew to her faster than time.
“You cannot allow him to stay home. But understand that he will soon become important to his tribe, making your job more difficult.”
The conversation continues in Other Voices II at the opening of episode 2, Illyia.
Alana Balee: Recent friend introduced by Meritus. Thick and wavy, black hair. Usually quiet, except around friends.
Bria Deo: Giels' mother and the tribe's Lead Storyteller.
Cleo ArcGola: A close, lifelong friend of Giels', whom he considers beautiful and assumes to be his betrothed.
Danis Deo: Giels's father and the Lead Elder of the Council of Seven Elders. Booming voice.
Giels Deo: First-person narrator. Son of Danis and Bria Deo. 18 years old. Studying to someday replace his mother as the Lead Storyteller.
Elder Sparus: one of the seven shamans on the council. Thin, middle-aged. Suspicious of Giels.
Erikal TenTensen: tall, strong friend of Giels's. Highly talented with the computer and has recently grown closer to Cleo.
Meritus Alderas: Best friend to Erikal with prankster tendencies.
Billincen Device: a magical item, owned by the Deo family, made up of a bobbing, chrome metal rod whose center point balances on a small pewter pyramid. It seems to serve no purpose.
boromount: a giant, grazing beast.
Boromount Plateau: a plateau along the coast of the Western Sea populated by boromounts. It is the site of the Wind Cave.
cab: the type of floating vehicle used in the Deo.
chromadium: a metal alloy, silver and chrome-like in appearance.
the commons: see Deo Commons.
computer-spirit: the spirit that resides in every computer of the world between the earth and sky.
the Council of Seven Elders: the governing body of the Deo.
the Deo, the Deo Forest: the land inhabited by the Deo tribe.
Deoan: relating to the Deo tribe. Also, the language spoken.
Deo Commons: a large unpopulated forest of Deo trees in the center of the Deo, mainly used for socializing.
Deo tree: a medium-height tree with smooth, tan/brown bark and broad leaves.
do-it-all: a small floating device having several basic tools. Generally cylindrical in shape.
the Drink: an intoxicating beverage.
dusk raptor: a small two-legged creature with soft plumage (dinosaur-like).
elder: one who sits on the Council of Seven Elders, also called a shaman.
the Equis: a lavish ceremony celebrating the change from summer to winter.
gort: a type of stew.
kite: an enormous, soaring, feathered creature.
the Lost Forest: a hilly region to the west of the Deo.
the Lost Tribe: an unknown, mysterious tribe that lives in the Lost Forest.
machine-spirit: the spirit that resides in a machine or device. Typical for all devices.
mechwork: the inner workings of a machine. Also used to describe the machinery of the Underworld.
the Original People(s): an ancient tribe. The first people to inhabit the mortal world.
payadekka: a large rodent that inhabits the Rambles.
ramble-rodent: see payadekka.
the Rambles: a marsh to the east of the Deo.
Silver Dare: Erikal's cab.
Sunfire light: a bright, artificial light, usually on cabs.
the Talis: a tribe on the southwestern coast known for their magical abilities.
tassel-goat: a knotty-haired, modest-sized, four-legged herd animal that grazes on moss, often found in the Deo Commons.
wing-facet: a sheet metal plate, normally as part of a grouping, often oval or with rounded corners, and often curved, essential for the levitation action of cabs and other devices.