The Fallen Skies
The Saints of the Church
Saint Breord, the Light in the Darkness
Breord was a dwarven lord ofthe ancient dwarf Kingdom of Ezrad Kurkullim. In addition to being a smith of the highest skill, Breord led his folk in plumbing the deepest depths of the darkest mines. When the delvers of Ezrad Kurkullim loosed the bound Stone Titan, Rockcrusher, Breord led the assault that ultimately slew the Titan. Saint Breord is the patron of miners and explorers of the dark recesses of the earth. Although Ezrad Kurkullim has been lost to the ken of dwarf and men for millenia, Breord remains a paragon of unrelenting bravery in the face of darkness.
Saint Rede, the Singer of the Word
Rede, or Rad’an’ak-izak in the tales of Kurst Ankor, was a wizard from the desert lands south of Lake Cathmere long before the Empire of Cathmere was born. He wandered the desert kingdoms, seeking knowledge and power over the arcane forces, seeking out students worthy of his knowledge and aiding those who were troubled by the evils of the world. It is taught by the Church that Saint Rede before taking on the final mantle of Immanence, defied the devils of Asmodeus, the demons of Orcus and all the efreet and djinn, forbidding them from setting foot in Kurst Ankor until the doom of the world. Saint Rede is the patron saint of wizards and arcane magic users.
Saint Olad, the Wrath of Kurst AnkorOr’ad-in’ak-ozar was a warlord of Kurst Ankor who pledged himself to ridding the world of demon-kin and bound the wealth of three kingdoms to his cause. His early career was spent in the shadowed lands south of the Kurst Ankor, destroying the Empire of the Serpent Lords. Cleaving to the teachings of Saint Rede, Or’ad-in’ak-ozar brought his Legions of the Jade Shield north to the Mittelfrank against the Devil-worshipping Kingdom of the Dorm’odayn. This war laid waste to Dorm’oday, creating the Broken Vales that lie between Cathmere and the Kurst Ankor today. Refugees from this war took their lore and their curse with them into the Fey-forests of the East, precipitating the Darkening of elven legend. When Saint Olad lay dying, some say of a demon-sting, he ordered his Jade Shields to disband and spread through the world, to slay hellspawn where they were found, and to teach the truth of the One God. On his death, three Angels did appear to carry his bier to the heavens, blessing the ground upon which he died, that in time became the city of Hebriador, the City of the Holy Seer.
Saint Marriah, the Lady of the Wall
Before Cathmere dominated the lands of the Mittelfrank, and before the Holy Seer took his seat is Hebriador, there arose a city called Aragonne close by the northern sea. Aragonne was famed as a centre of learning in the time of the City Builders and as a place of wealth that inspired the jealous lusts of the northern men and the Hounds of Wodden-land. Aragonne was surrounded by a great wall that kept her libraries, harbors and temples safe from the depredations of the wild folk. As the Hounds of Wodden-land rose in power and might, threatening the cities of the North, a woman came to Aragonne preaching the falseness of the Fallen Gods, and preaching the path to the eyes of the One God. This woman was named Marriah, and she had heard the Creed of Turning Back from the lips of the Holy Seer himself, so she had set forth to bring these teachings to the north. At first the people of Aragonne did not heed her, choosing instead to trust in their Fallen gods, but as the Hounds of Wodden-land conquered city after city in the north, more and more of the Aragonnese turned to Marriah and away from their false temples. When finally the Hounds surrounded the walls of Aragonne, Marriah led the population in defiance. The Great Hound, Churr’k Kaun, set his northmen allies to building a great ramp to overtake Aragonne’s mighty walls. Seeing this, Marriah stood upon the wall opposite the growing earthern ramp, greeting the sun’s rising each morning, casting defiance upon the toiling men and Hounds. When the northerner ramp finally touched the High Wall of Aragonne, the Hounds charged forward only to find that the men and women of Aragonne had dismantled their famed and gilded temples to the false gods, and used the stones to build a new and higher wall that the Hounds could not overpass. Defeated by the holy Wall of Aragonne, Churr’k Kaun and his Hounds left Aragonne behind, moving southwards to their ultimate defeat by King Brudein Bullhammer at the Fields of Nevarrese. The teachings of the One God spread from Aragonne of the Walls across the northern lands, bringing more fame and fortune to that city before it finally succumbed to the cold waves of the northern sea hundreds of years after Saint Marriah stood upon the Wall.
Saint Heddar, the Axe of Hollis
Heddar was a dwarven Prince of Holgren Daur who lived some 200 years ago. He served his father as a general and war leader against the threats that came from underneath the great peaks of Hollis. When the Sky-Tyrants came with their dragon servants, Heddar led his people in the long, losing fight. He became renowned for his efforts to defeat the dragonborn legions and minimize the casualties amongst his own. Heddar was inspired to greater and greater feats of derring do and strength, reminding his followers to shirk no challenge nor reveal weakness in the face of overwhelming numbers. It is said that when the Green Dragons Myrrh and Remorse led their legions into the Dwarven City of Dim Harru, Heddar stood along against their foul might. The battle grew so fierce, that the very mountains overhead collapsed and trapped the Dragons and Heddar below. It is taught that he still battles the Greens, either deep beneath the earth or in some pocket realm of elemental chaos. The Order of the Fearless is devoted to Heddar and to his teachings of the dreadnought.
Saint Elluriah, the Walker in the Woods
Elluriah Astraverdanus was a wild elf of the Wateroak Forest that bordered ancient Cathmere and the western Kingdoms of Lyr and Volday. His clanhad come to serve the Cathmere Empire as Stewards of the Wateroak, and when Elluriah became an adult, he was sent to learn the laws of Cathmere in Hebriador. For twelve years, Elluriah pursued studies in law and in the religious lore of the One Church before becoming entangled in the politics of Hebriador and the election to the Seat of the Seer. Elluriah turned away from his duties in Cathmere and began to roam the world, seeking out the wild places and their connections to the feywild, binding spirits of the wild to protect the various peoples who chose to live near them. During his travels, Elluriah entered the Morrigain and stayed there for a time, seeking to deepen the understanding between the Fey Realm and the people of Cathmere. Elluriah was also said to have travelled to the Kurst Ankor and to the lands of the Crescent League, stopping in the wild places to preach the Return and to commune with the spirits of nature as best he could. When the Sky Tyrants came, Elluriah was a very old and very wise elf dwelling again in the Wateroak Forest. On his last day in mortal form, Elluriah stood alone against the great Red Dragon called Crimsonvile, striving to prevent the destruction of the Wateroak and the free folk who dwelled therein. It is said the Elluriah’s primal spirit still roams the wild places of the world, aiding those who roam them and keeping them from harm.
Saint Victrix, the Righteous Sword
Victrix Victorian was a general of Cathmere who led her armies in the conquest of the lands of Mittelfrank. He stood for justice, valour and honour, serving as a paragon of righteous might, bringing law and civilization to lands overrun by barbarism and darkness. Upon his passing, as reward for his good deeds and his honour, Victrix ascended to the heavens to take his place leading the Host of Angels who wage war on the devils that infringe upon the world. Saint Victrix is a patron of soldiers, generals and other fighting men, as well as for those who seek justice in their lives.
Saint Avand’ahl, the Sailor over Seas
Avand’ahl was a fisherman who sailed the wide waters of Lake Cathmere in the Days of Woe when warring kingdoms filled the land. When the Holy Seer came to Hebriador, Avand’ahl was the sailor who carried him from port to port around the Lake, and in due time became a disciple of the Seer. After the King of Cathmere pledged his crown to the Holy Church, Avand’ahl left the safe waters of Cathmere Lake, and led his own disciples south to Kurst Ankor. There, Avand’ahl had built a ship that would carry the Word of the Holy Seer across all the seas of the world, to all the lands, bringing to all the dream of the Return. Legends say that Avand’ahl and his ship still sail the waters, protecting sailors and fishermen from the terrors of the deep and bringing light and hope to those who dwell upon darkened shores.
Saint Tarrill, the Clever
Tarrill of Vanderome lived and taught throughout the city-states of the northern Mittelfrank during the second century after the fall of Cathmere. Legends say that Tarrill was a rogue and a thief in his youth, and was caught pilfering a church in Askerone; it was during a stint in the dungeons of Vanderome that Tarrill began his studies of religious lore, and upon his release, he continued his studies, seeking out lost knowledge beyond the scope of the Church. During his lifetime, Tarrill designed and built many wondrous inventions, buildings and works of art. He also maintained his reputation as a rogue, and many elaborate traps and tomb designs have been accredited to him. Tarrill’s final project was the Great Cathedral of Holt Vescoyn, in which he blended the arts of the stonemason, the painter and the mage in praising the One God. Sadly, Holt Vescoyn and the Great Cathedral were destroyed in the fall of the Sky Tyrants, but the reputation and sanctity of Tarrill survive to this day.
Saint Theodrix, the Finder of the Lost
After the fall of Ezrad Kurkullim, the dwarven clans roamed the world seeking new realms and dominions to claim. There came word to the dwarves of the Mittelfrank of Horst Sin in the far south beyond the deserts and the seas. Many clans left the lands of the Mittelfrank to join their kin in Horst Sin; those who remained eventually settled and served the Empire of Cathmere until it too passed. In the final century of Cathmere’s unity, the Dwarf Second Kingdom perished, and only whispered stories of treason and betrayal came north to those who stayed behind. A young dwarven lord, Theodrix of Gildroth Tor, swore an oath to seek out the truth of these rumours, never knowing that the journeys that lay before him would be one to break the hearts of thousands. As Cathmere fell to war and anarchy, dwarves from the south came north, speaking of the Seeker, Theodrix, who found them in their darkest despair, drove the sand and waves back, sending them north to their distant kin and homes. From the joining of these exiles and those who remained in the Mittelfrank, was born the Third Kingdom of Holgren Daur, owing a debt of gratitude to Theodrix, the Seeker and Finder of the Lost. The Church teaches that Theodrix spent his final mortal years in a monastery on the broken stony shores of the Unending Waves, at the Pinnacle of Salthorn. Other, darker, legends tell that Theodrix and his faithful followers left the monastery at Salthorn, and passed deep into the drowned halls of Horst Sin to confront the dread deep ones and their primordial masters.
Saint Lavandrys, the Queen who Cried
Lavandrys was a Queen of Cathmere who loved her husband the King dearly and bore him twelve sons who grew to manhood. The King provoked war with the Elf-realm of Egorian that bordered Cathmere to the east, and it was this conflict that brought ruin and destruction to the Empire of Cathmere. Her sons and husband all went to war against the Fey-Lord of Egorian as was their duty as Princes and Lords of Cathmere. Lavandrys awaited their return in her palace on the shores of the great lake, and as each of her sons was slain and his body returned to her, she wept. Her tears were first crystal clear and were captured in a golden vessel, but as one after another of her loved ones was returned to her, her tears became crimson with her very lifeblood. When the Fey-Lord came to the palace, he found the Queen weeping, surrounded by the bodies of her sons. The Fey-Lord was so moved by this vision of sorrow and love destroyed, that he turned upon his heel, and led his armies back to the wilds of Egorian, never again to war upon the humans of Cathmere, who were saved from utter destruction by the Queen who Cried.
Saint Vor’illah, the Ringed Jester
In the dark times after Cathmere fell, in the fractured realm of Lyr, there was born a young woman who grew to become a singer and minstrel, taking the name Vor’illah the Ringed Jester. She travelled the warring realm, singing tales of heroism and great deeds done in the face of cruelty. The stories and songs that she sang around the land eventually inspired the Seven Princes to band together and to bring peace to their land. Vor’illah continued to perform at the courts of each of the Princes as well as in the common squares of all the towns. The prosperity and peace newly come to Lyr finally aroused the jealousy of the Rocklords of Volday, who loosed their fiends and villains upon peaceful Lyr, crushing army after army and destroying town after town. Finally, the Rocklords came to the Castle of Grymmirth upon the River Lyr. As their hordes besieged the Castle, a lone figure, grey-haired and clad in motley, emerged alone from the gate. Vor’illah sang before the Rocklords and their hosts for seven days without stop, keeping all who saw and heard her enraptured. As the sun began to set on the seventh day of the siege, the army of the Prince Radiant finally fell upon the Rocklords from behind and smote them unto the dust. When the battle was over, Vor’illah the Ringed Jester was no where to be found, but all in Lyr know that it was she that saved them from the Rocklords. Ever after, even in the darkest hours of the Tyranny of the Sky Lords, those who struggled to free their people and bring peace to the world have heard the songs of the Ringed Jester in the twilight hour, reminding them that their deeds are just and not to be forgotten.
Saint Simeon, the Man who Stood
In the rocky hill-lands that made up the southern-most province of Ancient Cathmere, there was born the son of a shepherd who was called to the Church at an early age. He studied and learned, travelling to the seat of the Holy Seer himself, before returning to his homeland of Baradogne to serve as a village priest and teacher. He was well loved in his village, and his reputation for wisdom and goodness spread through the province and beyond. There came a time in his 45th year that he was called to the Pass of Braven-hurn, now called the Pass of Shattered Bone. From beyond the southern province, then, did come the undead Legion of Seth-otun-urlik. The saint, Simeon, stood in the midst of the Pass barring the way into Baradogne and defying the Lich-lords of Sothuth for 40 weeks without food, water or yielding an inch of ground. Only when the last of his mortal strength failed, did the spark of the divine within him lapse, and the Legion of Seth-otun-urlik did flow around him into Baradogne and the waiting armies of Cathmere. After the War of the Beyond, and the broken Armies of Cathmere returned from Sothuth in defeat, a great tomb was built in the Pass of Braven-hurn for Saint Simeon, the Man who Stood.