Elayne isn’t a knight and couldn’t ever to be a knight of the realm. As she was born into noble family, who’s one task was to keep dark forces out from their realm, she was forced to put on the armour and take up the sword, as she is now only one who could do it. Elayne had three older brothers, so she was arranged to be married to a young lord from another family, while her brothers kept dark minions out from the human realm.
Over the years, one by one her brothers were killed by dark entities while they had started to gain more and more control of human realm. All three brothers were slain in the battlefield and their bodies were torn to pieces. Some parts were never been found. The priests claimed that demons had taken their souls as well as some vital parts of their bodies.
Now it was Elayne’s task to defend their realm from these same dark forces who have already taken her three brothers. She wasn’t fully trained fight, but if she won’t do her part to keep realm safe, her whole family would be disgraced and their belongings would be confiscate by the Crown. She wasn’t as strong as her brothers and she wasn’t very strong to hold a sword but it should be strong enough to do battle with these dark minions. Elayne would just have to do her best and find the way to keep their realm safe. With all the things she has to contend with some evil tongues whispered that her father wasn’t her father at all.
As Crown and Church are breathing on her neck with demands of results, this 21 year old noble blooded woman had to step into the path what could lead into the glory and might, or just into her own shallow grave. Time will tell..
This little half blood elf has lived her whole life amongst humans and chose to be a thief, as she didn’t want to be a prostitute. Her mother is already one of those brothel girls and tried selling her own daughter to a Brothel Madam. Ezri barely escaped, and now doesn’t want to see her mother or hear anything from her for that reason.
Her father was an elven trader who visited the city many years ago, when Ezri’s mother was younger than Ezri is now. She was betrothed to a local trader’s son, but this elven trader was far more immoral than the rest of his race, seducing and discarding her in a one-night stand. They say that a few days after leaving the city, he got killed in an ambush . She couldn’t marry that trader’s son, and after having Ezri, she was sold into a brothel. Ezri grew up in the brothel and didn’t want to join them, so she fled when she had a chance.
Now, times are hard, and thieves who are caught are usually hanged, with the Mother Church refusing to help them in any way. It’s believed that some people in the Church pressured the Royal Family to hand such punishments against thieves . Maybe the Church doesn’t want to share the loot with others…
Lori was born into a noble family and got a chance for a really good education at the Mages Guild. She always had been curious about almost anything that comes outside of her kingdom’s borders, including exotic herbs and relics, so joining the ranks of the Guild sounded interesting to her. In addition, all the benefits that being a mage could give her sounded a lot better than just getting married off to some nobleman and becoming a royal courtesan.
Lori undertook basic Mage training at an early age. She was only 14 years old when she started to walk on those dark paths to become The Sorceress. Older instructors weren’t keen to take the young girl into their classes and thought that she would drop off soon enough. It was hard for her at first to be away from her family, but eventually she got used into it. When she completed her basic training, she was initiated into the neutrally aligned Brotherhood of Eldars, currently the largest faction in the Mages Guild, taking on their blue cloak. The Eldars work for the Royal Family and the Mother Church as much they let them to do their own work . The Mother Church have been seeking to isolate the Mages Guild from the Royal Family, as some factions within the Church are thinking that all magic users are worshippers of evil and working against them.
After Lori turned 18 years old and spent countless of hours in the Brotherhood of Eldars’ library, she proved herself on the field and earned a Mage’s License, allowing her to leave the Eldars’ mage tower. Currently, she is in a new phase of training, being assigned missions from field instructors that she must complete successfully. Her tasks were minor at first, but now she is experienced enough to take on more demanding missions. She works hard, both for her brotherhood and to maintain her family’s good name. Having been locked into that mage’s tower for so many years, she is now eager to prove her skills to her family and her instructors. She will have to earn the right to use the title “Sorceress.” Of course, nothing comes without hard work and sacrifice.
Rinil Nenharma is a member of the Sacred Sisterhood of Shaeraer Aladel, but the high priestess does not approve of her ideas about the main figure of their sisterhood, Aladel herself. The Sisterhood of Aladel is the oldest and most honoured in elven circles. Its mission is to teach gifted elves more effective ways of weaving and bending the forces of magical power. Legends tell that Aladel herself became a goddess after she taught this knowledge to her followers, however, certain rival factions claim that Aladel died and her followers invented the whole goddess part for their own benefit. Rinil has studied the sacred texts for years and has started to believe that Shaeraer Aladel didn’t died, but that she might not be goddess either.
Rinil has a theory that Aladel, their beloved matron, is still alive and can be found if only someone can decipher the many subtle clues she left her followers. Even though Rinil’s theory is radical and rather unsettling the eight high priestesses who form the Council of Sisters couldn’t kick her out of the sisterhood, so they gave her a mission to find proof of her claim. If she can really find Shaeraer Aladel it would be toe sort of news that the Council has been waiting years for as the Goddess returning to her sisterhood would be a powerful sign to other elves. That is, just as long as Aladel proves to be ‘real’ Shaeraer Aladel.
Rinil packed her things and left to search for any way to prove her theories, while others could once again enjoy peace and harmony inside the sisterhood’s ancient citadel. A citadel Aladel herself had built as a safe refuge in the dark years when elves themselves were counted as a younger race.
Chiana was found near the old mine, badly wounded. The drow was brought to the local healers guild, where the healers just barely saved her life. Her wounds were severe, and seemingly made with a poisoned blade. Some of the local fighters thus speculated that she was attacked by other drows. Many have asked for the reasons why she was attacked, but she won’t talk about it to anyone. Whenever it’s brought up, she just says that she’s an outcast, nothing more.
Chiana needed some time to fully regain her strength and adjust to the bright sun. Most drows never see the yellow sun in their lives, and now she is forced to do so, living outside the world that is familiar to her. She decided to join the Healers Guild and learn their trade to repay their kindness to her.
She looks young, but nobody knows her true age in human years: Just like other elves, drows age differently from humans and usually live a lot longer. She could be a lot older than what she looks to be. No one knows and she won’t tell.
Now she has joined into ranks of healers and is sent into regions where healers are needed. Her path hasn’t been the easiest, but it isn’t going to get any easier for her under this bright yellow sun either.
Kingdom of Irrenia
Irrenia, is a human kingdom that has been around for several hundred years and during that time it has had numerous wars, big and small, with demons. It has grown over the years and even though there have been noble families sworn to defend their kingdom and fight against all evil there are still Dark forces lurking in the shadows. Nowadays, the Kingdom of Irrenia is ruled by King Orlan, who with his trusty knights and armies fought the Dark Armies and defeated the demon tribes.
It has never been revealed why the Demons want to take the Kingdom of Irrenia, but perhaps the humans are seen as the weakest link amongst the realms. The other races defeated the demons a long time ago and it may be that the Dark Gods are forbidden to cross the dimensions into their lands. That would mean that Irrenia is the only land where demons can gain entry to this dimension and thence attack the other races.
The last major war with the Dark Armies was around 50 years ago, however, smaller demon tribes had claimed various remote areas for themselves and the last campaigns against them finished around 25 years ago. All the Demon Tribes were eventually driven back to the demon dimension and the gateway between the dimensions was sealed, supposedly forever.
King Orlan didn’t have any children from his first marriage to Lady Marie, who died of the same illness that prevented her from having children. Evil rumours say that Queen Marie was cursed by Fanatics who served the Demon Tribes and her death was certainly slow and rather painful.
King Orlan had to produce an heir to the throne and so took another wife after Queen Marie died. The citizen of Irrenia were overjoyed when Queen Sinell, gave birth to Prince Remy. The couple had two children together, Prince Remy (now 22) and Princess Sarie who is now 20 years old. Sadly, Queen Sinell died several years ago. Prince Remy is due to take his father’s place when the old king dies, but some rumours suggest Prince Remy wants to speed this up so he can take the crown sooner.
The three races allied to the humans, Elves, Dwarfs and Tribacs, honoured young Prince Remy with gifts and everything seemed fine. Two years later Princess Sarie was born and Irrenia’s Capital, Terskanlahti, almost burnt down accidentally when celebrations ran out of control. Currently, everything seems to be even better than before and there are no signs of demons within the borders of Irrenia or any of her ally countries.
Some years ago King Orlan started to worry about his age and, concerned that his son was too young to carry his father’s mantle, the king made deals with the Elves to prolong his life. He hoped that when his time finally came his son would be mature enough to take the throne.
Maybe that spark of magic opened a rift between the human and demon dimensions, as the doorway for the dark minions opened again. This time the Dark Gods’ minions moved slowly and built their hideouts deep in shadows. They masked themselves with human skins and lured humans to become their servants with promises of Dark gifts. These minions worked secretively and in the shadows to secure positions within every human faction, thus ensuring they can see and hear everything. The ranks of Mages, Priests, Knights and other minor factions are now on their watch list as they wanted to know if and when the humans finally noticed their arrival and perhaps even delay or even stop any reaction until it is too late.
After the long period of peace the humans had gone soft and many fell for the Dark Missionaries promises of gifts in the name of the Old Gods for those who joined their ranks. Some people couldn’t be turned to the side of evil and the Dark Missionaries had plans to silence any targeted person that wouldn’t join as they knew too much.
Still word of their arrival spread and the House of Navarre was sent to deal with the threat.
House of Navarre
Lord Aton Navarre was a trusted friend of the Royal family, serving the Old King as a knight and later as a general in some campaigns. While fighting for his King, Aton married Lady Nadi of House Rertek and gained some political strength. When the Aton family was ennobled by Royal family centuries ago their oath was to fight against all evil forces and uphold the law. So Lord Aton continued fighting for the Kingdom after those wars ended, but even so he begat three sons and a daughter. Aton had lost his brothers in the wars against the demons and hoped his work would
give an easy start for his sons, as after his demise his sons would have to continue his work just as he had continued his father’s work. The House of Navarre had kept the peace of the realm for seven generations and his sons would be the eighth generation to carry on with the task.
The three brothers were Anteus, Luthion and Icus. All of them were strong and the best trainers available had taught them fighting skills so they would be ready for any future wars. After a long quiet period the dark forces found their way back into Irrenia and this time they had plans to ensnare the whole realm under their rule, moving more silently and carefully to lure highly placed people to their side. The demons wanted to control all information about their return, to prevent word from spreading.
Lord Aton Navarre was first to go up against demons, as it was his duty. It seemed an easy task for an experienced knight to demolish the small nest of Demons he found and soon he was heading back home. What Aton failed to noticed while killing the minions of evil was that something small had attached itself to him. When he arrived home the small demonic spider first stung Nadi and then Aton, before he crushed it on his mace. Both were poisoned and even with healers to help them it acted fast and both died within two days. Lady Nadi was the first to die and Lord Aton passed away soon afterwards. The whole thing had been a set-up to kill the attacker, who just happened to be Lord Aton Navarre.
The Lord’s last task was to give the family sword to his eldest son, Anteus, who was now the new Lord Navarre. Aton’s sons continued the holy war against darkness and while the three brothers were seeking and destroying all the demons they could find, their little sister Elayne grew to be a beautiful young noble lady. She didn’t get the same combat training as her brothers because her “task” was to marry a nobleman. She could have been one of the Ladies of the Court, but fate had something else in mind.
While Elayne didn’t get the same schooling as her brothers she was a natural with a sword and with proper training could have been the best. From time to time she sparred with her brothers and gave her teachers more grey hairs, as she was restless when it came to learning the ways of proper court ladies. Within a few years Elayne seemed to calm down and settle into her role in life while her brothers fought on and keep the family shield shining.
Then, within a single year Elayne lost all three brothers without any information as to how it could be possible. Anteus, Luthion and Icus were well trained Knights, but one after another something bested them and their lifeless bodies were found in remote areas. There was no evidence as to what killed them, no tracks to follow, nor information why they were in the places where their remains were found. The family sword passed from Anteus to Luthion and then from him to Icus, all within in same year. The House of Navarre was losing the battle and both the Royals and Church demanded results. It felt like someone had betrayed them and set the Navarre brothers up to fail.
After Icus was defeated it became clear that Elayne had no choice other than to pick up the sword herself and carry on the fight. If she refused her family would be disgraced forever and Crown officials would take away everything that House of Navarre owned.
There would be no marriage for her is she refuses to pick up the sword, but even if she survived taking up the sword she probably wouldn’t get any offers of a highly placed marriages. Whichever choice she chose she would loses something. Elayne’s task now is to make a final stand against the darkness and if she fall the House of Navarre falls forever. King Orlan is old and losing his strength day by day and even if Lord Aton was his most trusted general in the old days he cannot support the House of Navarre. It has always been the House of Navarre’s duty to fight against demons, even alone if needed.
The Clergy and the High Council of Clergy
The High Council of Clergy was formed around 100 years ago and since then it has risen to a position of power over the other factions. The “Clergy” have even acquired some control over the mages as all who practice the trade of Magecraft now need to be licensed by Officials from both the Crown and the Clergy. It is claimed this ensures all Mages are loyal to the Kingdom and so unlicensed conjurers are considered a threat to society and treated as such.
In remote locations of Irrenia, where the Clergy’s hold is weakest, people can find such conjurers and other “Might Benders” more easily, but within the bigger cities it is a rare thing to meet an unlicensed conjurer who openly admits to what he or she is. With the Royal family weak, the Clergy have taken a firm choke hold over the mages and their agents can do and go almost everywhere if they have Permissions from the High Council Officials of the Clergy. Their forces also help secures the peace within the biggest cities of men and are formed mostly from the ruling church in a region although some cities can have several different church factions. Only the ruling Church faction can form the peacekeeper forces as the Crown usually only provides their own Royal Guards.
Most Churches tolerates Elves and Tribacs to a point, as they are allies of men, but the Clergy like to see themselves as being above these races. As the Clergy say, their cause is divine and holy, given to them straight from God himself and no man should be above the Laws of God. God will protect them from the Darkness.
The High Council is the group that make the plans and take all the decisions for the Clergy. It is made up of Cardinals belonging to the various religions in Irrenia. Under each Cardinal there are usually 2-4 Bishops, each of whom usually controls 5-10 Priories within the lands he represents. This means that, while seeming to be protectors of the peace, the Church has a large network for their own use and collects lots of information from around the Kingdom. The seats on the High Council are divided between the 4 Elder God factions and 3 other Younger God factions.
Overall there are around 12 active church faiths allowed to work in the Kingdom of Irrenia. Of course there are a lot more religions within the country, but currently only these 12 factions are permitted to spread their teaching to the citizens of Irrenia. Most of the religious factions also work together to keep the peace within the Kingdom’s borders. When they get proof someone is tainted by Darkness, aiding demons and/or worshipping them, these persons are arrested by troops from one of the Churches. A trial is then set up and in most cases the arrested person is sentenced to being burned at the stake, so holy fire can purify their tainted soul. Nobody is safe from the Clergy’s spies, not even nobles with political power, but sometimes a large donation to a God has been enough to prove claims of heresy false and have them dismissed.
Some would say that the Clergy does evil themselves, but there are still factions within the churches who do work that benefits the citizen of Irrenia. Priories around the country offers help for workers, food and shelter for those in need and protection from Dark minions. Priests who walk among the peasants do their part to keep moral up, but there are always those who want to turn peaceful peasants into rioting fanatics.
The Oracle is older than Irrenia itself and while the Oracle’s body looks young, alluring and untouched by time, she is older than anyone know. She doesn’t pledge her loyalty to any single Church faction, but even so from time to time some faction’s emissaries try to convert her to their cause. Any faction that controls the Oracle would have more political power and divine might in their hands than even they could imagine. Currently the Oracle is neutral in every aspect.
Within the ranks of Priests, Bishops and Cardinals, there are still discussions and arguments about the interpretation of the Oracle’s words. The Oracle links them to the Gods and usually outsiders don’t even see the place where the Oracle is kept. It is even rarely that someone other than Bishops or Cardinals actually sees the Oracle.
Just like the Clergy is made up of many religion factions, the Mages also have several factions specializing in different “Arts of Might”. A long time ago when the Mage factions were formed, might wielders were scattered around the country and the Royals offered them their own mage towers, lands to control and influence in matters of state if they work for the royal family and for Irrenia.
Mage factions easily out date the Clergy as the first Mage factions were formed around 200 years ago, but over the last 75 years the Priests have manoeuvred their High Council nearer at the Royal Family. Most mages don’t like this as they are forced to get licences from the religion factions so they can practise their trade. Unlicensed mages aren’t allowed to cast spells, charms, use might or other such things outside the mage towers. Mages can train their pupils as much they want, as long as they stay inside their tower and don’t cause harm to outsiders.
Most of the Mage factions, like Blue, Gray, White and Greens, are lawful and serves the Royals. Blue is the most common and one of the oldest factions, while Black mages are the eldest. Mages usually uses certain coloured robes to mark their faction and most are likely very loyal to their own cause. Blues specialize in negotiations, investigations, healing and science. Grey mages specialize in science and collect knowledge. White mages specialize in fighting against forces of Darkness and they are allowed to have their own battalions and battle mages of that group are trained to use several weapons, different spells and to mix potions that can aid them in battle. Green mages are known for their close relation with nature and while they like to stay out of fights, they are still feared for their abilities to assume different traits from stronger animals. They serve the Royals just like the other factions, but to preserve the sacred nature around them.
Red Mages are known for their love of fire and strength. In every war there have been Red Mages, some fighting on the fields while others are directing movements from the command tent. Blue mages have a saying that behind every bad situation there is usually a Red Mage. The Red Faction searches for ways to expand their skills and might, so as to make their spells more powerful and themselves better than other factions. As Blue Mages are Lawful, Red Mages are usually neutral and only serve the Royals if it benefits their faction. There are lots of rumours that Reds are closer to Black Mages than other factions and rumours hints that the Red Mages have done some really evil experiments with animals, humans and non-humans. There isn’t much proof that could tie the Red Faction to these dark deeds, but if real proof of such crimes was found the faction would most likely be disbanded. The Red Mages aren’t the biggest, but they are the strongest and wealthiest of the Mage factions.
The Black Faction is the oldest of all the mage lineages and it is also the most feared these days. They are rarely seen in the cities of men and usually stay within their dark towers in hidden location. People are restless near Black Mages as they are known to work with dead flesh. They are necromancers and their speciality is reviving dead animal or human to undead state. They work to learn the secrets of Death itself, to overcome its power so as to shatter the border between life and death. Black mages don’t freely share their knowledge with the other factions and their knowledge on Necromancy is kept hidden from all other than their own kin. Not even the Grey mages are allowed to study their findings. Most likely the Red faction is only mage guild that doesn’t fear the Black mages. They would like to take their hidden knowledge and use it to serve their needs. Black Mages have sworn allegiance to the Royal Family and the Council of Mages, but as they usually keep to themselves within the shadows of their dark towers, they are often mistakenly counted as servants of Dark minions. As every Mage is required to get a license from the Clergy, most Black mages stay within their towers and create their own ways of moving between different locations without the Clergy’s interference. Within their towers they can still do their own studies and train those who want to join their ranks.
All mage towers are out of the Clergy’s reach. Only if the leading Mage from that guild gives his/her permission may the clergy’s forces enter into a specifically named tower or other building. The Royals gave this right to Mages who served them well in the past, but the High Council is working towards removing it for several reasons, mainly because certain persons within the High Council and the Clergy hates knowing that Mages can keep their forces inside their towers as long as they wants to, hidden from their eyes.
Living within the vast area of Irrenia are hunters, peasants, farmers, workers, traders and all the other regular sorts of folk needed for society to function. Cities require members of every class to keep them running properly. Farmers and peasants produce food, workers makes a wide variety items or offer other services, while traders do what they do best,
buy, sell and con a bit here and there.
The noble families rule their lands and the people who live on them. These families own their land and make sure that all the produce of the farmers, hunters and workers go through their book keeping system. For that, every village has its own Clerk to keep the books more or less up to date. These Clerks usually serve the local noble family, but there are still official clerks who work for the Royals or for the Clergy.
The Allies of Humans: Elves, Dwarfs and Tribacs
The Elves are the oldest of these three races. No human is sure how old this race truly is as that is one of the things the elves are not keen to share. Most Elves live beyond the western sea in the Elven Imperium, which is effectively closed to humans at this moment. Only a few merchant ships have been allowed to dock there, but their numbers seem to be growing as some elven factions are interested in humans and their artefacts. Elves are highly entangled with magic and most of the strongest mages are Elves.
Dwarfs mostly live in their underground cities, but are a reasonably common sight in human cities. There, they tend to frequent good inns where they can drink, eat and be merry. Dwarfs are strong warriors, master blacksmiths and master jeweller. They can use magic up to a certain point, but that is not much compared to the other races.
Tribacs are the third race allies to the humans, but tend to keep their distance from the other races until there is need to do otherwise. They live in deep jungles behind the southern desert and only a few humans have ever seen the Tribac cities and survived the return trip to tell about it. Their ways are completely different to human ways. As a race Tribacs are neutral and peaceful, but they will defend themselves if needed. They live in perfect harmony with nature and this gives them special abilities. Some say that they are all magic using creatures able to bend magic to their will as easily as humans breathe, but this hasn’t been proved true or false at the moment. It is very rare to see one or more Tribacs outside their own territory.