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About AstriaS

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    Alisa Camian
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  1. The news came as quite the surprise to Glargill, to say the very least. As the sun fell in the sky, and night came to cover the streets, the shadows seemed a bit darker, the colors of the sunset a bit more dull. As the cold of night set in, a somber melody cut through the air; The sound of a gentlemanly frog croaking out a mournful lament to honor the good doctor, a friend recently made and quickly lost. “You will be missed, old chap.”
  2. Alisa read over the report with a furrowed brow. ”I feel like I should’ve been informed of this plan beforehand... Interesting times, these.”
  3. Purpose When inducting new initiates into the clergy, it is necessary to ensure the prospective initiate’s readiness for the position. This has, historically, been accomplished through a variety of methods. In the early days, there was little need for a priesthood, as those who joined the Faith were joining to fight with the Red Brothers in the All Father’s name. In other times, prospective initiates have been asked to put pen to paper and take oaths to prove their knowledge and piety. In more recent times, under High Keepers Tyr and Sølvi, the would-be initiates were put through a gauntlet that tested the depths of their dedication and commitment. These gauntlets included such things as brandings, bloodletting, and drowning; Ordeals that pushed the limits of mortal tolerance. Upon completion of the gauntlet, be it in the manner of Tyr or the manner of Arthas, the prospective would be granted the rank of Initiate, at which point they would embark upon the path to becoming a fully-ordained Keeper. Gauntlets The varying methods of the past were meant for the same purpose; They proved the prospective’s ability to serve the faith, either by knowledge or by dedication. However, there comes a time when the practices of the past must be looked upon, and the question asked, what may be done to improve them? In this particular case, the answer is to combine the methods of old in the hopes that the new method more thoroughly sorts the fit from the unfit. Upon making known their desire to serve the Faith, the would-be initiate shall be informed of the tasks they must complete in order to be inducted into the ranks of the clergy. There shall be three Gauntlets of Initiation: The Gauntlet of the Flame, The Gauntlet of Steel, and the Gauntlet of Mind. Of these, two must be completed, and of the two completed, one must be the Gauntlet of Mind. Gauntlet of the Flame The Gauntlet of the Flame is designed to test the initiate’s strength of will and dedication to their faith. Completion of this gauntlet reveals the endurance of the initiate’s spirit. By proving their soul’s endurance, the initiate shows that he is dedicated enough to face the Abyss, unafraid of what lies within. Upon choosing this gauntlet, the prospective initiate shall be given the following options: - Marking: Whether by branding, tattooing, scarring, or a combination thereof, the initiate shall be marked with the symbol of his Paragon, along with the text of a prayer of hymn of their choice. - Drowning: The initiate shall, at the supervising Keeper’s discretion, have their head submerged in either bull’s blood or water, and will be held there until they fall unconscious. Should they awaken after being pulled out, the gauntlet will be considered complete. - Ritual of Fire: A small, wooden stage shall be erected around a stone center, and a fire lit below it. The initiate will perform a ritual prayer from atop the platform as it burns. The initiate may not descend from the platform until the ritual has finished, otherwise the gauntlet will be considered a failure and may not be attempted in this way again. The objective of this trial is not to burn the initiate alive, but rather to test his willpower; his willingness to remain composed in even the most trying situation. The prospective initiate may also suggest their own ordeal, to be approved by the supervising Keeper. Gauntlet of Steel Quite simply, the Gauntlet of Steel is a test of the initiate’s physical strength. Our culture, our history, is built on the strength of warriors. The earliest members of our faith, the Red Brothers, were warriors through and through. The strength of a warrior is, and will always be, among the most admirable of mortal traits. By proving his mettle and skill at arms, the initiate shows his readiness to stand against the agents of the Long Dark. To complete this gauntlet, two trials must be completed: - Trial of Beasts: The initiate shall first be tasked with hunting a particular beast of the supervising Keeper’s choosing. The beast of choice should be a predator, but not one so dangerous as to make the trial impossible to complete. Upon completion of the hunt, the initiate will make an offering of the beast’s remains. This trial will ensure the initiate’s ability to stand against feral beasts. - Trial of Men: For this trial, the initiate shall prove his mettle in three rounds of combat. The first round will consist of the initiate facing his opponent unarmored and armed with only wooden rods. Both contenders in this round may be initiates, if two initiates are present. The second round will consist of a similar fight, with the changes of leather armor being permitted along with wooden training weapons. The final round shall consist of the initiate facing an opponent chosen by the supervising Keeper. All armor is permitted, and all fighters may use the weapon of their choice. Intentional killing will be prohibited in all rounds. All rounds will continue until the initiate either claims victory or can no longer stand. This trial will serve as proof of the initiate’s ability to stand against the mortal, intelligent enemies of the faith. The prospective is judged in these trials based on performance, not necessarily success. Should he fall and continue to stand until physically incapable of doing so again, then he has shown the strength of a warrior’s spirit just as much as if he had defeated his opponents with ease. Gauntlet of Mind The Gauntlet of Mind is both the most important and least complex of the three gauntlets. Designed to test and prove the initiate’s understanding of the Faith as well as his piety, it will consist of three proofs; proof of knowledge, proof of understanding, and proof of piety. This will be a matter of simple determination on the part of the Keepers. When a prospective initiate shows, either with spoken or written word, one of these traits, a Keeper may make the determination that the initiate has shown his proof. By completing this gauntlet, the prospective has proven his worth to those he would call his peers, and gained their trust in his ability to conduct the duties of an Initiate. Advancement Once the Gauntlets of Initiation have been completed, the prospective becomes an initiate proper, and his path to becoming a fully ordained Keeper begins in earnest. The advancement through the ranks of the clergy from this point on shall, as it has always been, be based on merit and ability rather than tests and trials. Once the initiate has proven his understanding and ability, his fitness for the role of Keeper, he shall then be tasked with the creation of his Flamebrand. Then, once the Flamebrand has been crafted and the time is deemed right, the Lighting Ceremony shall be held, wherein the Flamebrand is lit from flames of the Hearthfire. Following this ceremony, the Initiate will become a fully-fledged Keeper. Alisa Camian, 1754
  4. There comes a time when a judgement must be passed. This is a simple fact. When a wrong has been committed justice must be meted out. In matters of the soul, this becomes a much more complicated matter. For our souls, granted to us by the All Father, must ultimately be judged by him at the end of our days. But are there not those instances where we are called upon to determine the redeemability of a man based on his sins? In these instances, we are acting as judges on the Father’s behalf. Should we not then seek to be as thorough as possible in that determination of redeemability? And, for that matter, what makes a man redeemable? At what point is a soul too far corrupted to be saved? To answer these questions we must first explore what makes a soul capable- or incapable -of redemption in the Father’s Light, we must first define both redemption and the ways in which corruption takes root. Redemption of the soul is, at its most basic, a purification; a removal of the primordial shadow that dwells within. This is known and accepted. The methods for achieving such purification, however, should vary depending on the severity of one’s moral and spiritual decay, as not all corruption is equal. The latent rot that lays upon the mortal soul from the moment of birth, those temptations of the Abyss, can be purified through simple prayer and dedication. Those who permit this rot to fester through ignorance of the All Father’s truth may be saved by being brought to His Light. Those that permit the decay to take root in their soul willingly are a more serious matter, and therefore require greater measures to be taken. In addition to the innate impurity of our being, however, there are other corruptions and transgressions to be discussed and considered. Firstly, there is the matter of practitioners of magic. Those who have embarked on this path have invited the abyss into their souls in exchange for power, and this should be weighed heavily when determining the degree to which they have been corrupted. Secondly, there is the matter of those who hold no faith. They have allowed their souls to be open to the corruption of the Long Dark, as they hold no belief in the need to look inward and recognize their failings. Some godless men, given the chance, change their ways. Others will instead choose to deride our teachings as ramblings and nonsense; These men are beyond our help. Thirdly and finally, we come to the matters of apostasy and heresy. These are crimes with long-established punishments, however they warrant mention. A man who renounces his apostasy has, after all, seen that the Father’s truth is the only truth, has he not? On the subject of abominations, there is little to say. The undead; those races whose forms have been warped and spirits irrevocably tarnished by the chaos of the Abyss; beasts brought into being through the machinations of foul magics; all should be treated as agents of the Long Dark, as they always have. Having now defined the problems, we can move on to the various solutions. When we speak of solutions, we speak of those methods the faith has long employed. As we’ve previously stated, there is prayer and self-reflection for those whose souls are burdened only by those shadows that follow all mortals. For more serious transgressions, there are more serious punishments, namely penance by fire, the Father’s Mercy, and simple, unceremonious beheading. Now, it is necessary to acknowledge that a punishment must be fitting of the crime. Otherwise there is no justice, only cruelty, and let it never be said that we are unjust in our dealings. So, when should each of these punishments be dealt, and for what reasons? Firstly, a determination should be made as to the severity of the corruption afflicting the soul of the accused, and this determination should be made bearing in mind the weight of his sins. For those that have simply allowed corruption to drive them into immorality, all that is necessary is penance by fire. Similarly, this should extend to those who have dabbled in the arcane and chosen to repent, for they have chosen to come to the light. The method of penance should also be tailored to the weight of the sin, as, again, cruelty is not justice. To simply brand a repentant mage and then have a mere thief to lie on a bed of coals would be unjust. The repentant apostate, similarly, should be given a firm, permanent reminder of his mistakes. This is just. For those whose sins are too severe for us to judge, we reserve the Father’s Mercy. Those mages who have corrupted themselves and their fellows; Those heretics and apostates who refuse the Flame; Those godless men who attempt to spread their godless ways into the minds of others; Those whose sins are beyond counting. These people shall be put to the stake, that their soul may be judged by the Father with immediacy. Unceremonious execution should be reserved for abominations and those whose sins are so severe that to send them to the Father directly would be too kind an end. -Alisa Camian, 1752
  5. AstriaS


    Alisa was born an only child to parents of simple means. Growing up the child of farmers, far from urban life, she never felt ashamed of her family’s humble status, but rather she embraced it. For her, a simple life was a virtuous and honest life. In spite of their unimpressive finances, however, Alisa’s mother, ever-dedicated to the girl’s learning, made a point of keeping her daughter furnished with what books they could afford. The books would be the basis of her knowledge of the material world, and her mother would teach her the ways of her faith; The Red Faith. And so, at the insistence of her mother, Alisa learned what history she could and received a thorough education in the teachings of the All Father. By the end of her childhood, she had found her truest passion in her studies of both history and faith, and dedicated herself to them feverishly. She learned the history of nations present and past, as well as the wars that had shaped and shaken the realms. Having become as pious as she was knowledgeable, she now knew exactly what she wished to accomplish in life. She would dedicate her life to her faith and, hopefully, one day become a priestess. With her mind set on her dream, when the day finally came, Alisa, with the fire of faith in her heart, bid her family farewell to embark upon her journey.
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