Tuesday, March 11, 2014

World Building in 30 Days - Seelian Coil

I woke up this morning, my first thought was about my wife. The next was the groan when realizing I need to get my tired butt outta bed to go into work. I quickly pushed that aside and Seelian Coil popped into the vacancy. They don’t call him the grandfather of magic for no reason. In Ovelesk no other single individual has come close to having as much impact on magic as he has.


Seelian was born late in the Second Age. The world he was born into was beholden to the Gawds. They controlled the Towers and with it the Weave. The Towers were anchored to the Weave. Any localized spell or magic was routed thru them. The Gawds weren’t kindly benevolent rulers. Calling them tyrants doesn’t go far enough. The Gawds were the supreme powers of the Second Age. The scattered mortal races were little more than play things. Gerand and his lieutenants had created countless abominations from them. To the Gawds they were little more than cannon fodder in a series of unending wars. With the Umbla banished any petty insult was answered with a new creation or an army of thousands marched off to die. The Ancient Ones quickly forgot any ties they might have once had to each other. They became separate races with separate traditions and ideals. The Gawds, especially Gerand, manipulated the races themselves. Much like he had done with the Yae, betrayal and internal conflict was used to weaken the races support of each other. The dwarven clan of Goblata sold its kin into slavery. Giants conquered and enslaved dozens of races. The Kinslayer Wars were set off by lies whispered from the dark. Dragons, werewolves and vampires were created. Men and the Kinder sailed west to avoid all of this.


Seelian was born On Northern Ovelesk in the western lands of King Marson. The sea king had led his people across the Great Sea seeking shelter from the constant warfare. On Ovelesk magic was wilder and less tamed. The distant reach of the Towers meant that magic was governed less directly. Seelian studied it in its raw form and wrote his magical treatises. Funded by Marson he constructed the first Citadel of magic near the capitol city of Torvin. Seelian’s fame brought apprentices from far and wide to study with him. The prosperity of Marson and his allies quickly established a series of city-states reminiscent of earth’s Greeks. As the allies gained power and wealth more people found time to pursue leisure activities. Soon Seelian had more students wanting to attend than his school could support. He chose four of his apprentices and sent them to the most potent of the Marson’s allies to establish Citadels. Seelian chose locales that mirrored the locations of the Towers on Yathe. At each cardinal point of Ovelesk a site was chosen for its Weave Foci and defensibility. The Citadels were widely publicized as homages to man’s homeland. In truth Seelian had been fashioning huge lodestones and imbuing them with magic. He utilized different magic types to counteract the Towers strengths and weaknesses.


Citadel of Stone > Tower of Eglain

Citadel of the Mists > Tower of Karnin

Citadel at Killian > Tower of Run Imar

Citadel at Odanis > Tower of Rom Shar

Citadel of Arland> Tower of Tal Aer


We’ll talk more about lodestones in a future article. Seelian’s actions were a calculated response to the power of the Gawds. Kylia Humstock, the eldest of Master Coil’s apprentices, said it best in her treatise:


Seelian in meddling with the balance of the Five Towers in effect placed his hand on the rod of magic and bent it beyond the point of shattering. The effect was that he came away holding two halves of magic. Seelian, in his shortsightedness, failed to see the shards that would be strewn upon the floor.

-Kylia Humstock, Treatise on the Dangers of Power

The Breaking, an end of the age


The event had cataclysmic effects all over Ea-Reth. The Leyline that ran between Odanis and Arland also ran along a fault line. The strain triggered the fault. The earth opened up. The continent broke in twain. Arland and its Citadel plummeted beneath the sea. Odanis was spared by a mere thousand feet. For weeks the sea rushed to fill the void. The sound like a great gargling monster. The Gargle Canal now separated North and Southern Ovelesk.


South of Yathe the war of the Pey and the Torrians was brought to an abrupt halt when the southern half of Yathe and most of its habitants vanished. All that remained was Torroskar, home of the Torrians. The Lake of Fire disappeared and the Imar, a chasm of fire running from the volcanic mountain chain in Omarond to the Lake, poured into the void. In the West the sea poured into the same. The two mixed and intermingled for the next six hundred years. Torroskar, once a series of natural pinnacles and cliff side dwellings, became an isolated island chain. Tal Aer plummeted beneath the waves. The Gawds likewise vanished. The Towers now empty vestiges of a bygone age. Their effect on evolution stopped.


The Gawds found that there magic was reduced. Those Pey that survived the transition to their new homes, found that much of their power was gone. The Umbla laughed at the new comers to their plane. Will, Word and Birth were no longer enough. With no direct tie to the Weave the Gawds could not access the power they once took for granted. They now had to earn the way the Umbla had during their exile. They needed the believe of mortal followers. The Gawds found they were locked out of the mortal plane, unable to manifest or directly impacted the world.


Magic Users too found that the very nature of magic had shifted. Spells that once worked now failed. Magic Users that could draw directly from the Weave found that their efforts were hampered. To regain their power two new disciplines arose. Subtle magic was adopted by a group that found that by meditation and supplication to the Gawds/Pey/Umbla they could use some spells. During the Third Age clerical orders sprang up across Ovelesk and Yathe dedicated to these Deities. Their use of curative magic became beneficial to the populace and temples were erected and believe spread increasing their power. Vulgar magic was adopt by another large group that found that study of the world, leylines and its inhabitants produced ways to activate spells. Magi became a grouped of learned scholars. Their efforts oft proved powerful and shocking displays of might. The people turned on them, so they hid away in the Citadels and other strongholds of power becoming secluded and suspicious. The Gray Council turned from sharing knowledge to hoarding it. Likewise, the old ties to the Alia Tai were renewed.


As the new age marched on, new methods were invented and other groups arose. The Amon Ka, trapped powerful demons and devils to gain power. The Amon Sil, brokered deals with old Fey spirits gaining their own brand of power. The Tor Siri found that the undead, particularly Vampyre, contained a powerful source of magic. They joined the Council and strengthened it.

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