Author Topic: The Followers of the Aldain and Azorel's Key  (Read 1758 times)

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Offline Tolen

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The Followers of the Aldain and Azorel's Key
« on: September 12, 2010, 10:29:32 AM »
     What follows is a description of a secret society that was working in the background against the PC's of the original campaign.  None of the PC's met any of these guys face to face (that they knew of), but they were trying to accomplish the same thing the PC's were, though for different reasons.  This is another long entry, because it contains a lot of myth and history.

The Followers of the Eldain
     Secretive and mysterious, the Followers of the Eldain are a group of wizards and magic users who believe that all magic comes from the Eldain, and that by following in their footsteps, they can unlock the great power once held by mortal hands.  the scour the world looking for arcane scrolls and texts that describe the power lost when the Eldain were destroyed.
     The history of the Followers is hard to describe, because little of their activities have been brought to the light.  They are, in every way, a secret society, and have not openly claimed responsibility for any events over the past millenia.  In fact, most law enforcement groups refuse to acknowledge that the Followers even exist, or that they would be a threat if they did.

Organization
     The Grand Magus rules the Followers.  He is ancient, even by elven standards.  He creates the policies and mandates for the group, his word is law.  Each of the Followers is akin to a research assistant, travelling the world to uncover everything they can about the Eldain.  He has eight 'Seconds' who take his orders and give them to the lower-ranking members, who actually carry them out.  The Seconds act as a sort of advisory board, taking what has been discovered to the Magus.

Joining the Followers
     You do not join the followers.  They approach you, and only after you have proven worthy.  No one knows for certain how they seem to know who their next recruit is, and the methods of divination they use are as difficult to discover as the members themselves.  It is believed that the Followers are not all Elven, but of course, this is impossible to prove.

Important Members of the Followers
     Unfortunately the secretive and mysterious ways of the Followers prevents any real knowledge of the Followers to be known.  Many people who are presumed missing may in fact have been recruited.  Aside for the Grand Magus, even the composition of the Followers in doubt.  The Grand Magus is surely a very high level magic user, possibly an Arcanist.

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Offline Tolen

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Re: The Followers of the Aldain and Azorel's Key
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2010, 10:49:22 AM »
The Prophecy of the Keys and the Account of the End of Days
     This series of legends and myths was the driving force behind the original campaign.  This is the tale as recorded by the College of Bards of the Twilight Order.

The Creation of the Key
     Far back in the dim reaches of time, near the end of the first great age, the Age of Wonder, there was a skilled artificer named Azorel.  Azorel was a bitter elf, one who held a distinct hatred for the gods who first created the elves, then turned their back on them.  As was tradition in his family, he learned the Arcane arts from his father as a boy, and by the age of fourteen, he had outstripped his father's abilities.  He had created many useful and powerful artifacts, and continually struggled with his feelings about the gods.
     After many years, he challenged the chieftain of his tribe.  The laws of the day allowed him to take over as chieftain if he could defeat the older chieftain in a duel.  Azorel easily defeated the old elf, and went on to rule his tribe for nearly two hundred years.  Unknown to all, though, was that he wasn't a pure elf, he was one of the Eldain, which even in those days was not common, since ages of inbreeding had watered down the Eldain, turning them into the Elves we all know today.  It is said that every elf has the traces of the Eldain in his blood.
     By the end of his rule over his tribe, he was old, even by elven standards.  He was now four hundred and twenty eight  years old.  As he ruled his tribe, he brought many other tribes into an era of peace.  The tribes were violent people, however, and as his strength faded, they rankled under his rule.  they had not conquered another tribe in many years and grew restless.  A young warrior mage named Parcenal stepped up, and challenged him.  his strength had ebbed, and he was humiliated in front of his people.
     After Parcenal took leadership of the tribe, he immediately made war against the neighboring tribes.  Azorel schemed to retake the tribe.  But to do so, he would need to consolidate his power.  He believed that he could regain his old title through the use of an artifact created of the power of the Eldain, though that had fled from him.  So he gathered other Eldain to him, though there were few of them to be found.  As the strength left his body, he and the other Eldain worked to find the right combination of elements that would allow the artifact to work.
     Azorel gathered his followers together at a place of power in the North of Nithallion, and combined their energies to create the artifact.  The names of the eight who helped create the key were: Azorel, Dearnon, Mortain, Vessaroth, Harimon, Lorin, Bencalion, and Ceassagrill.  It was called thereafter Azorel's Key because it was he who caused the key to be created, and it was his power that was completely drain in its creation.  He took the key to the tribal council.
     "I have created, through the arts of the Arcane and the Mystic energies of this world a key.  This key opens no less a door than that of Cairn Aedel, the home of the gods who despised us.  With this key, the gates of the mighty mountain fortress can be flung wide open, and the elves can take their place above the gods and have their vengeance on them.  Once I have done so, I will be ruler of the Elven people, every one of them."
     The tribal leaders were in awe of the device, and amazed that one so old could have collected the power to create such a device.  For it was in those days that the elves (and least of all the Eldain) respected their elders as they do now.  They considered the elf and his power, and realized that in his advanced age, he was feeble.  So they took the Key from him.
     In his disgrace, he realized that no good could come from the key he had created, but he was took weak to do anything about it.
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Offline Tolen

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Re: The Followers of the Aldain and Azorel's Key
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2010, 11:07:02 AM »
The War of the Key, and the End of the Age of Wonder
     Among the tribeleaders was one called Dearnon, one of the Eldain, and one of the ones who helped create they key.  Dearnon desired the key, not to bring down the gods, but to enslave the elves to his banner.
     Dearnon was the strongest of the Tribe leaders at the council, even stronger than Parcenal, and he took the key for himself after they took it from Azorel.  With his immense power, the other tribeleaders were cowed, and did not oppose him.  Dearnon set his sights on the rest of the world, and set about a plan to eliminate the humans from the world, those creatures favored by the gods in place of the elves.  However, each of the Eldain wanted that power to himself, and so each gathered together an army.
     One of the powers of the Key was to cloud the minds of others, so that anything the owner said was taken as the absolute truth.  Dearnon travelled Nithallion, seeking out its greatest warriors, and through the deception of the Key convinced them to join his forces.  In this way, he gathered the strongest of the armies.
     In the summer of that year, Dearnon's forces met those of the other Eldain in the grassy plains near Uthayr Forest.  And it was the bloodiest battle ever fought by men or elves since.  Through cunning and guile, Dearnon held back part of his force as the battle raged, so that he would always have fresh troops to send against the others.  The others banded together near the end, and sent the remains of their armies together to attack the remains of Dearnons forces.
     The battle raged until only Eldain were left.  Of the original creators of the Key, only Mortain, Vessaroth and Harimon were left to face Dearnon.  They pursued him until they reached the edge of Myr Audun.  The spells and incantations they released have never been uttered since.  Each of the Eldain held power that can only be dreamed of today, and that power died with them.  For three days, they threw magic at one another, so that the beaches glowed for a long time after.
     When it became obvious that the fight would not end on its own, Mithrallon broke his taboo against interaction, and appeared on the beach that final day.  Standing in their midst, he removed their powers.
     "In your arrogance, you forfeit your place among the gods.
     In your foolishness, you took power beyond your control.
     In your wrath, you led thousands to their death.
     In your vanity, you lost everything."
     Then Mithrallon took the key, and sundered it into pieces, and scattered the pieces so that no one would eve be able to reassemble them and cause a war of this scale again.  He then returned to Cairn Aedel.  The Four remaining Eldain were powerless now, and lived out the rest of their lives as normal elves.  However, Dearnon had relied on his power so thoroughly that when it was removed from him, his body disintegrated and became like sand.  And since that day, that shore of Nithallion has been called Farine Dearn, or the "Dust of Dearnoin."
     To this day, even the most powerful magic users hold only one tenth the power of the ancient Eldain.
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Offline Tolen

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Re: The Followers of the Aldain and Azorel's Key
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2010, 11:19:27 AM »
The Prophecy of the Keys and the Fate of the Eldain
     When Mithrallon sundered the key, his son Thorus asked of him "Will the key ever be reassembled?"  For Thorus is charged with the protection of Cairn Aedel, and wished to know if there might ever be a threat of this nature again.  Mithrallon answered:
     "My son, the mortals were created by imperfect beings, for there is no being alive that is full and unsullied.  Therefore, they will always wish for things they cannot have.  I have sundered the Key into six pieces and left them scattered to the ends of Arrylon.  Rest assured that no man or elf, nor dwarf or gnome nor changelings or the halflings yet to arrive will assemble the Key within this age or the next.  However, by the end of the age of transformation, the forces of of the mortals will again begin moving to bring the pieces of the key together.  This will be the end of days.  But the mortals will be unable to agree on the result.  The elves believe that the key will enable them to claim the throne of Cairn Aedel, and the humans will believe that it releases Nixus' beast from the underworld.  I cannot say truest, but fear the worst.  For my mother Feadre, before she died, foretold that I would kill Nixus, and he would kill me.  And that is how we will now it is the end of days."

  As concerns the eventual fate of the Eldain sorcerors, Dearnon had no heirs, and his line died with him.  Many believe that had he survived, his house would have been the strongest.  Lorin, Bencalion, and Caessagrill were killed in the battle of the long day.  Of the four that survived, one cannot be exposed to that kind of power unchanged.  Mortain never died, living forever as a ghoul, spreading terror.  Harimon lived in the caves of the Silverspire Mountains, and he became the father of all trolls.  Harimon was killed when the Argent keep was built.  Vessaroth lived as an elf, though far from Nithallion.  He could alter his form at will, and from him came the race of shapeshifters.  Vessaroth now believes that the Key may not be neccessary to complete his goals.  Only Azorel survived unchanged.  For though he created the Key, he was too weak to continue to be a part of its history, and he did not fight in the war.  He lived for many decades as a great wizard (though greatly diminished in power) and when the thirteen houses arose in Nithallion after the time of the republic, his would become the most powerful.  For his full name was Azorel Kalaif Altrus, and his descendants founded House Altrus.
I'm in Southern Illinois.
No, further than that...
Try South of Mt. Vernon, where Southern Illinois really begins.