Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Legendary Monvesians: The Akhnaphar

In the orcish langauges, akhnaphar roughly translates as "three [of the] north," commonly understood as the Northern Triad.  When Jostin and Ignatius had first ascended, a small cult formed in the mountains who worshiped the Triad.  Independent veneration of Jostin and Ignatius overshadowed the first iteration of the Triad, however.  It wasn't until this ult and Gygar were redisovered that the Triad came to be venerated together again.

All three of the saints who are commonly venerated in the Kleimland were legendary heroes who ascended to sainthood.  While Gygar, Ignatius, and Jostin comprise the Akhnaphar itself, their stories, are bound with "anti-saints"--who ascended in opposition to the Triad--as well.

Gygar

Race:  Human (Honderreicher)
Class:  Wizard (Enchanter)
Background:  Noble
Temperament:  Idealist
Saintly Path:  Thaumaturge
Saintly Patron:   Mekare the Archivist
Sphere of Ascension:  Aerosphere
Venerated by:  Reorganized Disciples of Gygar (Order of the Northern Triad), Universal Order of Spiritual Thought

Born during the close of the Orc Wars, Gygar was drawn to magic as a way to protect those closest to him.  Using the powers he honed at the end of the war, he pursued the path of the thaumaturge under the tutelage of a dwarven Paragon.  While following this path, Gygar came to rule over the region of the river Kleim, calling his domain Gygaria.  He established himself as the strongest wizard in the land, and trained other arcanists. Among his students were:  Hippolyta, Novation, Ignatius, Ursula, Laurentis, Pascha, Constance and Christophe.

Unlike the saints below, Gygar's order does not have a heraldic shield.  The practice of religious orders bearing shields grew long after Gygar's initial veneration was absorbed into the Universal Order of Spiritual Thought.  Only after the return of the Disciples of the Fifth Sphere was Gygar's independent veneration restored, and the Northern Triad solidified as a single religious tradition.


Ignatius


Race:  Human (Honderreicher)
Class:  Thief (Arcane Trickster)
Background:  Sage (Wizard's apprentice)
Temperament:  Vitalist
Saintly Path:  Dynast
Saintly Patron:   Hathra the Lover
Sphere of Ascension:  Pyrosphere
Venerated by:  Society of St. Ignatius (Order of the Northern Triad)

Ignatius' timeline is hard to accurately pinpoint, as could be expected from a chaotically-inclined time traveler.  As a youth, he was an easily distracted student of Gygar--leading him to become an Arcane Trickster instead of a wizard.  Later in life, or perhaps even simultaneously, he came to be one of the companions of Jostin.  While best known for these two relationships, Ignatius was also the founding Margrave of Kynnys, which he ruled from the city of Kynnysboro.  While his descendants would come to venerate Jostin, his capital remains the center of his own cult.
Kynnys was once a portion of Gygaria; after the death of Gygar's successor Laurentis, the kingdom was divided among the remainder of Gygar's followers--including Ignatius.  Only Ignatius' dynasty would survive, however.

Jostin


Race:  Human (Honderreicher)
Class:  Paladin (Oath of Devotion), Cult of Human Perseverance; Cleric (War Domain), Cult of Human Perseverance; Bard (College of Valor); Wizard (Abjurer)
Background:  Adept
Temperament:  Altruist
Saintly Path:  Polymath
Saintly Patron:   Baltus the Anointed
Sphere of Ascension:  Hierosphere
Venerated by:  Order of St. Jostin (Order of the Northern Triad)

Ever the hero, Jostin came to a large following in life, long before pursuing sainthood.  He first entered the public eye by by slaying the black dragon Tomarum, who had been terrorizing Kynnysshire.  As the son of Oerloeg, Tomarum had been the keeper of the sword that housed his mother's spirit--a blade which came into Jostin's hands, where it earned its place as a sword of legend.

As an ascended polymath, Jostin has four companions:  Adar the Crusader [Cleric]; Hinrich the Magician [Wizard]; Ignatius the Trickster [Rogue]; and Hulda the Knight [Fighter].  While Jostin and Ignatious would become saints, the others would not.  Adar and Hulda were content to live out a mortal life, growing old together.  Hinrich, on the other hand, would die alone and unfulfilled--prevented from achieving immortality himself.

Zweihaender of Oerloeg

After an orc attack left her mortally wounded, the blue dragon Oerloeg called out to a dwarven artificer.  In exchange for select items from her hoard, the artificer agreed to forge an orichalchm  greatsword to which he would bind Oerloeg's spirit.  The sword remained, unused, in Tomarum's hoard--until Jostin came hunting.
The Zweihaender of Oerloeg has been used (twice) against Hippolyta, founder an leader of the Disciples of the Fifth Sphere:  First by Jostin, and later by November.

Hippolyta


Race:  Half-Orc (Honderreicher), later Lich
Class:  Warlock (Undying Patron), later n/a
Background: Sage (Wizard's apprentice)
Temperament:  Vitalist, later Nihilist
Saintly Path:  Adversary
Saintly Patron:   Rellis the Deceiver
Sphere of Ascension:  Necrosphere
Venerated by:  Cult of Hippoylta, Disciples of the Fifth Sphere (as founder only)

Ignatius wasn't the only student of Gygar to follow their mentor into sainthood.  The trikster's rival, Hippolyta, also ascended.  Under the tuetellage of the archsaint Rellis the Deveiver, Hyppolyta followed the path of the adversary.  Like Ignatius, the story of her ascension spans centuries--but she didn't use temporal magic; instead, she continued her plotting as a lich long after being "slain" by Jostin.  After turning the Disciples of Gygar against his successor, Laurentis, she founded the Disciples of the Fifth Sphere.  Later, she would prevent Jostin's companion Hinrich from completing his own journey to sainthood.

Little is known about Hippolyta's life before she became a disciple of Gygar:  Was she a naturally born orc who became untainted in the wake of the Orc Wars?  Or was she a human who resisted the taint?  Whichever it is, the moment she became a half-orc, she saw visions that would define her course in life.

Theodore Rosenshild


Race:  Human (Honderreicher)
Class:  Paladin (Oath of Vengeance)
Background: Noble
Temperament:  Materialist
Saintly Path:  Confessor
Saintly Patron:   Netha the Shield-Maiden
Sphere of Ascension:  Lithosphere
Venerated by:  Divine Order of the Rose and Shield

Theodore II of the Hindland,  Son of Rathbone, grandson of Theodore I (founder of the Hindland) wasn't content to merely be king.  He wanted to be worshiped--both in this life and afterward.  He founded the strictly conservative Divine Order of the Rose and Shield soon after his coronation, and immediately decreed it the state religion.  To solidify the order's ideology, he led a crusade against magic and non-humans in his grandfather's kingdom.  He even attempted to conquer of the Kleimland (including Kynnys)--but this was never realized.  Theodore achieved sainthood during the war with Kynnys, and that conflict would prove to be the end of the Hindland.  Theodore's order lives on in Gierland, where it continues to oppose both the Universal Orders and the Northern Triad.

Edited on August 27, 2015; August 30, 2015; September 21, 2015; December 30, 2015; January 1, 2016; June 28, 2017; July 18, 2017.

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