Light of Death
In the relatively early days of humanity, at a time where humans still believed a big bearded man in the sky caused disease and long before a guy named Columbus got his own holiday for stumbling upon an entire continent by accident, there existed a small, secluded civilization of people called the Amratin.
The Amratin lived in a beautiful, hidden valley among the Rocky Mountains, and were indeed a very advanced people for their time. They made great innovations in agriculture and harvesting, developed a very complex oral and written language, and had more knowledge of astronomy than any other civilization on Earth (or the Solar System, for that matter). It is speculated that extraterrestrial beings contacted them on many occasions when they were in need of astronomical assistance-and the Amratin never failed to provide accurate information. Some say that is why "aliens" still visit Earth to this day, in vain hope of revisiting this long-dead civilization.
Their location made contact with any other humans virtually impossible, for their valley was surrounded by a deep, treacherous forest that no one ever dared to enter, because one was dead the moment their feet touched the soft, damp ground. No light penetrated the thick canopy of trees in this forest; day or night it forever remained as dark as the darkest black hole in space, usually bathed in a fog so thick you could scarcely see your own hands in front of you.
It was in this mystical, evil forest called Casrir Dak, or Light of Death, that lived the most beautiful, wisest, purest being on Earth: a godly-white lion-like creature named Hox. Hox had been a gift from a grateful alien to the Amratin, in exchange for providing directions to the nearby Alpha Centauri galaxy, and they had accepted him with the utmost honor and pride. But Hox soon proved to be too much for their small society to handle; the sheer amount of unearthly goodness that his being emanated was too powerful for the human race, and the Amratin found that they were all becoming immortal.
As time went on, many of the Amratin were able to escape this slowly suffocating society by means of an ingenious flying device that they invented with help from Hox's intelligent mind, and a select few made it as far as Europe, giving rise to the tales of immortal gods in Greece and Rome. While the stories remained, the "gods" all died out, because the immortality wore off once one was not in contact with Hox.
The Amratin in their native home found that Hox's goodness was proving too much of a handful for them, and his power could end up dooming the entire human race. So they managed to negotiate with Hox, and being the understanding creature he was, hid himself away in Casrir Dak. The forest is the only place where his power is quieted and controlled, so he lived there, watching over the Amratin and the rest of the human race.
While the Amratin died out long ago, after a plague brought by birds to their city wiped them from the face of the Earth, it is said that Hox still remains in Casrir Dak to this very day, watching over us humans. He could not leave his forest to help the Amratin survive their blight, and so he spends the rest of his existence in constant meditation, concentrating his power over the souls of the dead. He can see into the afterlife, and has contact with his long-dead Amratin friends, but he can never leave the forest as long as he lives.
Hox's eternal pain of loss can be felt each time one experiences extreme fear or crippling depression, and as the years pass his pain grows, and so the pains of humanity grow. But, mournful as he is, Hox still loves everyone, and can sense the goodness in each and every human being on the planet. It is said that when one is ready to die, and is on the point of crossing into the afterlife, there is an amazing bright white light at the end of a tunnel. Some believe it is Hox greeting us into the afterlife, and bringing us into his forest, where he watches over us and we become just shadows among the trees.
We, good humans, lessen his pain just an infinitesimal amount. But to Hox, it makes all the difference.