Written by smeagol August 09, 2006, 04:01:00 PM870 ViewsPrint
Remnants of Erenland's once-great navy lie at anchor near the port of Stormhold, regarded by their countrymen as little better than pirates. If they cuold be persuaded to join forces with other warriors opposed to the Shadow, they could be a critical part of the kingdom's liberation.
On the seas of the Pelluria nature is not the only enemy. While storms and shoals are never taken lightly by anyone who plies that body of water for trade or travel the two legged predators can be just as fearsome. The hulks of the Order of the Shadow and the raiders of the Pirate Princes are the most prosperous of those predators however, in their shadows smaller groups operate. One of the worst of those groups is The Black Dogs
The Black Dogs are a group of self serving pirates. Based out of Dragon Island in the Eastern Pelluria, this group is dedicated to getting ahead at all costs and damn anyone who gets in their way. To do this they play the most dangerous game of all: betraying the Pirate Princes to the Order and Order to anyone that will pay their price.
The Servants of the Pool, also known as the Dark Hand of Izrador, or simply the Dark Hand, are a small and secretive order that is devoted to the sacrifice of the unworthy, those falsely serving the Dark God. The Servants are similar to normal legates with two major exceptions. First, they have no Astirax as they do not trust their motives or devotion to Izrador. Second, and where they get their name, the Servants bond with a black mirror or pool, gaining the power to drain life with their black hand.
During the years of tumult that marked the Third Age, there was an old shoemaker, whose name is lost to history, who lived in the city of Sharuun. This man had a wife, children, and grandchildren, a prosperous shop on the periphery of the Far Lands Market, the great bazaar of the Southlands. One day, he downed tools, and without a word to his apprentices or family, left the city, taking nothing but his walking stick and the clothes on his back.
He travelled far across Eredane, suffering the depredations of bandits and renegade horselords on the southern plains, then venturing deep into the Druid's Swamp and beyond, into the Caraheen. Such a journey was unprecedented in that Age; although in the time of the alliances of the Second Age, men and elves and dwarves would think nothing of travelling thus through the lands of their partners, the growing paranoia and isolation of the Third made such events rare. All along his journey, he avoided the lethal dangers of the environment with his intellect and strange, supernatural foresight. And while the guardians of the forest saw him, and heard of his travails through the Whisper, they did not bar his path or reveal themselves to him.
Finally, the man beheld the hometrees of Caradul itself. Approaching, he begged an audience with the Witch Queen, and to the great surprise of her advisors and soldiers, she bade him enter the Arbour. The supplicant and the Queen spoke for many days, sequestered in her chambers, and when they finally emerged, the Witch Queen announced that the man, henceforth known by the nom de plume Akhmad Alzaad, was a true prophet and visionary, the spiritual heir of Ressial, her advisors form the long, long passed Golden Age. Aradil commanded that Jenan Kyri, the Devoted Captain of her Ceremonial Guard, go with Alzaad back into the lands of men, and aid him in setting up a clandestine society that would safeguard the secrets and wisdom Alzaad foresaw.
The two indeed did this, though it greived Kyri deeply to leave her warriors and Queen. Returning to the Southlands, Alzaad and his elven guardian went to Cambrial, where the prophet used his powers of divination to make contacts amongst the scholarly community. Between them, Alzaad and Kyri gathered sagees and warriors, adventurers and informants, from the North and the South, Highwall to Sharuun, and began weaving them into a unified whole, a network that would endure in secret until the Last Age, when it would be truely needed.
As his span of years wore on, Alzaad left most of the details of running the organization to the still-youthful elf, and retired to a monestary outside of Highwall where he compsoed a book of his visions and prophecies. It took many years to write, and the legends say he died the very night after setting down his quill on the final page. The book, collated by Kyri and the scholars at her side, became known as the Chandrahaal ; the Chronicle of the Paths. The organization as a whole took this name for it's own, and set about preparing for what Alzaad had said would come to pass.
The Channeler's League (also known as the Hermetists) gives itself the noble task of teaching hermetic magic to those who have a gift for it.
Their duty is also the preservation at all costs of magic, whatever form it takes: thus, they often seek to discover and secure power nexuses and covenant items before they fall between the legates' hands.
Since the dawn of time, there is a well guarded secret, that even the elves do not know. Some areas of Eredane were never settled by man or fey, in spite of their natural generosity. Whys is this so? Because these areas are home to powerful nature spirits. And, yes, contrary to the standard D&D worlds, these spirits are sentient. MOst of the time, these areas are also home to powerful magic nexuses that strengthen the spirit's powers.
Since Izrador's invasion, a few humans or fey people tried to flee in these remote zones, hoping to elude the overwhelming evil forces, and find shelter there.Those who would not adapt themselves to Nature would be mercilessly crushed; they were never again heard of, and those who managed to escape the spirit's wrath claimed these were indeed haunted areas, which had bo doubt already succumbed to the Shadow.
Those who adopted the Nature's ways were tolerated. After long years, they eventually discovered the spirits' existence. THey became their servitors, bound to protect these lands which had become their homes. They are the land's protectors, the Druids.
Six months ago, a lonely Defender found a strange place as he was exploring the Isles of Ernan. On a remote island that was partly sunk, he discovered long-forgotten ruins of what was no doubt a lost temple from the elthedar era. In the crumbled ruins lay a shining presence, whom he heard lamenting about his inability to escape this place. The being was actually a Celestial named Eleniel, who had been trapped here at the time of the Sundering. After 8000 years of imprisonment, he was more than happy to meet Ardirian (that was the Defender's name). Eleniel had no way to know what had happened since he last walked the lands of Aryth. He was horrified to learn that the Shadow had apparently won. No, it was not possible... The Gods would not allow this! He had to give people hope before all was lost.
Ever wondered how the Durgis Clan could hold for so long? Why Izrador hasn't he already won as he has the most powerful forces available? Because he has to face an internal threat which he cannot even name, which regularly performs sabotages in his temples and his garrisons, and slows down his war efforts. This resistance group probably saved thousands of elven and dwarven lives, yet they despise the other fey people, and few would acknowledge their efforts.
Gnomes can travel all around Eredane, those that join the Hidden Hand, however, do that for two purposes, to follow the Shadow's designations and transport and sell valuables only they can get and move around. Author: smeagol.
A few years ago, a very loose organization was created between Landfall, Bodrun, and the Freeriders of the Horse Plains of Erenland (and perhaps even the Asmadarin), in order to allow them to communicate with each other. There is no "real" military support per se, but rather trade and economic relationships fall within the scope ofsuch a loose alliance. It also allows for "free" passage into each others' lands, and the exchanging of informations.
This "confederation" has its capital in Landfall, where representatives of every involved party (human freeriders, dwarves of Bodrun, free people of Landfall, and of course gnome smugglers) gather in a secret council to decide of the course of action to be taken.