The Coming of the Zioth

Aldet Bray

Aldet is about 25, 5’4”, with a wiry, almost boyish frame. Her blonde hair is lightened further by the sun and pulled back neatly and unceremoniously. She has muddy hazel eyes and a thin-lipped, solemn demeanor. She has a ragged, still pink scar on her right brow. She wears new mahogany studded leather armor with matching gloves and boots, all finely made but lacking any real flourish to their design. The light crossbow and heavy, curved dagger that she carries are well-crafted, with simple leather wraps and the beginning of abstract carvings on the crossbow’s stock. She typically wears crisp, high-necked, and unadorned clothing that allows her easy motion. Her posture tends toward rigidity, reflecting her previous duties, and her daily motions are practiced, almost rote, with little wasted effort. Aldet has a Sign of Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
tattooed just below her left collarbone.

Background and History

Nobody could question the unwavering devotion her family showed to Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
, stretching back for generations. From a young age, Aldet Bray and her brothers were raised with the firm hand and harsh lessons of parents who sought His divine clemency. The oldest boy, Barat, showed early promise as a candidate for priesthood. He requested the Sign on his throat, praying that his songs would ring full and true. Her younger brother, Jervis, grew tall and strong, quickly able to lift a maul as if it were a mallet. He requested the Sign on his hand, praying that any he felled would understand their punishment. Aldet could not become a priest- an absurd idea- and lacked the brawn to serve as an honored guard. She requested the Sign over her heart, praying that she would need no outward reminder of the path set before her.


Upon recommendation, the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
was glad to use young Aldet for activities too mundane for their priests. When their spare time coincided, she would practice with Jervis in the drill yard, learning to avoid his ponderous blows. Some were lessons learned the hard way, as any worthwhile lesson was. As her ability to defend herself became apparent, the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
took to using her as a courier. The road was more enjoyable than dusting in between her sessions in the training yard. Aldet was frequently able to quietly share the road with traveling merchants or families, traveling through more dangerous stretches with the safety of numbers. Those that did seek to harm her usually didn’t realize the threat she posed until it was too late. The Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
was more than satisfied with her performance, and traveled her throughout the region until a more suitable opening appeared.


“Speck, this water isn’t nearly hot enough for my shave. Retrieve a new basin,” Master Crodon said simply. Aldet sighed inwardly and hoisted the near-scalding thick bronze bowl, heading down the stairs to the hearth. After six years as his attendant, she really should have known better than to try to pass this off as hot. Pleased with her reliability, the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
had assigned her as an attendant to Ritual Minister Crodon, tasked to assist and protect him. His work expanding Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
’s reach in his prime had indeed earned him the ire of many heretics, some of whom sought to kill the man who had offered their families escape from damnation. In reality, though, it was more caretaking and scribe work than a guard position. Age had not been kind to Crodon. A gaunt, frail man, Crodon’s hands shook constantly. The tremors sometimes grew severe, leaving him only able to sit at his desk helplessly as Aldet cut his food or shaved his face and the remnants of his stringy white hair. On his better days, she would escort him through the city, keeping an eye on the crowds as he tottered through the streets. There had been a few close calls, but nobody would deny him his constitutionals. Today though- she ladled steaming water into the now searing-hot vessel- was not a better day.


At first she had been disappointed. Aldet had hoped that her job would be more… exciting, like Jervis’. Master Crodon was a confusing man, too. He had been such a frightful enforcer of Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
’s reach in his youth, and yet now he had grown so soft, so fond of the manuscripts and tomes that lined his extensive chambers. He would talk at length about whatever he was studying, rambling to himself, or dictating his theories and notes as passion crept into his voice. Initially, Aldet tried not to listen too closely as she wrote- some of his study was… uncomfortable… touching on faiths emergent and long dead, on cities Aldet had never heard of, of the weapons wielded by Brundashplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Brundash

By Arnell and the DM. Last updated 2014-09-17

Before the Battle of the Magics, Brundash was the mysterious home of a world-wide organization of magi. Even then, few could claim to have seen it, and no one would say where or even what it was. Brundash was a term used both for the place, and the organization.
’s agents. Crodon would let out an accusative, barking laugh when her shifting belied her uneasiness. “Typical, Speck. If all is His, we should learn of what his radiance touches. ” The nickname had started as a reminder of her place, but he spat the term with an unexpected affection.

As the months turned into years, Aldet found herself missing his recitation when other priests sought his council behind closed doors, or whenever Crodon descended into parts of the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
forbidden to her. Sometimes he would emerge from them hours or even days later, exhausted and weak, eyes glazed unseeing, and hands stiller than she’d ever seen.


Lately, the Ritual Minister been called to the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
far more often, followed by meetings where she and the others’ attendants stood uneasily as their masters yelled inside, muffled by heavy oak doors. Something was changing- the halls were tense, missives coming and going. Those couriers looked exhausted. After a particularly long sojourn into the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
’s depths, Crodon looked past her with his glassy, unfocused eyes as she ran the blade gently over his throat in his chambers. “Speck, they’ve got to become our allies. True allies.” She opened and closed her mouth, and finished her work in silence before helping him stagger to his mattress.

The next day was chaos. A scroll case was missing, and it must have been important. Guards sealed the exits as rooms were searched. They found it beneath her cot, tucked against the wall separating her cubby from Crodon’s chambers. Impossible, but there it was. She had never seen the black leather cylinder before. The hours that passed were a blur- she tried to explain that she had spent the morning attending to errands as Crodon met with the priests, that last night she was in the training yard after her master fell asleep- no, Jervis couldn’t make it, he had guard duty, she was alone, this is all some horrible mistake. But everything seemed to fall on deaf ears. There was arguing in the next room over, then Crodon’s voice preceded him as he barged through the door.

“They say you took the scroll, and the council refuses to see reason-“ he shot a glare through the doorframe at some unseen target, then lowered his wavering voice, “They seek to silence me, silence us, and you’re first. I’m sorry Spe- Aldet. May you be one of the Few.” With that, he turned and left as the guards’ hands wrapped around her arms.


Aldet had no idea how long she had been in the pit. Long enough for them to throw a chunk of stale bread and some slimy gristle down there, and long enough for her to eat all of it without hesitation. Some time after, a skin filled with tangy, sour water was dropped over the lip. That was a while ago, from the ache in her stomach. She was in a well, some 20 feet deep and 8 feet wide, with smooth hewn stone sides with an open top. The air was cool but foul, the taste of filth lingering on the back of her tongue. People die down here. You know the people who come to this wing never leave. I’ll rot here, if I’m lucky. Aldet thought, her heart pounding, This is their justice?

Barely any holds in the stone, Aldet could haul herself up 5 feet or so before losing her grip and crashing down, nails tearing against the rock. Again and again she tried, turning her fingertips to raw meat. The third day, she got almost halfway there before the guard stuck his head over the edge and tossed a stone over the side at her. She landed hard and the room faded away to the sound of the guard’s howls.

There is only one true justice. The words echoed in her head as Aldet came to, scraping off the dried blood that sealed her eye shut. She’d heard so many people saying them- her parents, Barat, Crodon- but she was beginning to understand. We are weak, unworthy of His world. We corrupt what we touch, we twist it to our ends. They won’t kill me here. Her head was pounding and her arms seem to cry out for her to try one more time, some distant and beautiful song ringing in her ears. Carefully, she worked her way up the wall, every muscle screaming. But somehow, she felt lighter, the pain in her grisly hands dulled, her bare feet managing to find purchase where there was none. Her hands crested the edge of the pit with a slap, grabbing the cobbled floor as if it were a ladder rung. As her head popped over the edge, the guard ran toward her with his spear, a doorway beyond him. A quick scramble and her body was up, pushing low along the floor as the guard began to drive the spear to where she was a heartbeat before. A grab at his trailing ankle threw him dangerously off balance, and she was off and running before she heard the sickening thud from the pit behind her.

Personality

Aldet once saw her path of lay service to the House of Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
as the only one, and the Morenthianplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
’s actions as right and justified. While she traveled extensively, she engaged with nonbelievers only as much as necessary and took the beliefs and actions taught to her seriously. She was pleased with her life before her capture and flight, though these recent events have deeply shaken her understanding of her faith’s methods and leaders. Now that she has fled her local House, there is little that ties her to the area itself, and she feels actively endangered near the city.

She is typically reserved, hesitant in word but not action. Despite her skill with some weapons, she is not particularly prone to violence and will typically only start a fight that she is confident she can win. Aldet is capable of intense loyalty and quiet affection, and was strongly moved by Crodon. While she was not the intellectual he would likely have preferred, she is now starting to realize the gift of his lessons- a glimpse beyond the world she dwelled in. His belief in her innocence means a great deal to her, and she can’t shake the feeling that he helped her escape the pit.

Aldet believes in magic, and believes it is fundamentally different than what the Morenthianplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Morenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
priests do in the Houseplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The House of Morenth

As the primary place of worship for a population of six thousand, the House of Morenth is an enormous structure, perhaps five or six hundred feet across at the longest, but it's not just one big rectangular building. It looks like it's been added to many times over hundreds of years. Whether the building is bigger or smaller underground is impossible to tell. It is known that a library exists under the House, to which access is severely restricted. Expensive glass windows d…
’s depths. Magic is an unnatural threat, and she understands mages to be wicked manipulators. Of course, she’s never actually knowingly met one. Some of Crodon’s stories may have implied that a few exist who act otherwise, but at the time she would have been a bit incredulous.

The Zioth - or something like it - may indeed happen, but it is an event blown far out of proportion. There is periodic devastation, some sort of cataclysm, but not utter destruction. She has rarely given it thought, if forced to be honest.