Magicians, Warlords, Bards and other Suspicious Folk
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When Rallyn slew the goddess of magic, Jil’lahl, many suspected that arcane magic would leave the world along with her… and many thought that it did. However, those studied in the arcane arts found that their patron goddess was not the source of power, but rather more of a focus for it. Many shied away from the study of magic as it was viewed to be too dangerous to control. The numbers of wizards in the world dwindled for this reason as well as the obvious reason of the great plague.
Only the extremely gifted and brave continued to study the arcane arts. Gifted because magic has become far more difficult to control than prior to Rallyn’s Folly and brave because many have grown mistrustful of those who still use the arcane arts. Many suspected the source of the plague which followed the Godswar were mad wizards who sought to rule the world without any divinity to oppose them. Others are simply fearful of the unknown. With less arcane magic and no divine magic to be seen, it is quite a shock to see someone hurling fire. This has caused more than one wizard to be hunted by a mob.
Jeq’uilo (Human): A former druid and former warlord, Jeq’uilo rampaged across Midchantry, carving a small kingdom from the other warlords vying against the druids at a more “wild” time during Midchantry’s history. Though not on “alliance” level terms with the The Druidic Council, Jeq’uilo also wasn’t their enemy. As a former druid, he still followed many of their ways. And when the time came to finally unite Midchantry again, Jeq’uilo sided with the druids to stamp-out all warlords and bands of marauding humanoids.
Today, lesser warlords spring-up from time to time, and humanoid bands still roam the caves and forest of Midchantry. But those two things are far less prevalent. Jeq’uilo serves as a king, of sorts, in the Midchantry Druidic city of Uli’Lei.
Rutog the One-Toothed (Half-Orc): Rutog is a vicious half-orc warlord who roams the southern hills of Dunmaol, near the Midchantry border. If a settlement or farm can’t pay what he wants (gold, women, food, whatever), he will burn it to the ground and leave heads on spikes as a warning.
Nobody knows where Rutog originally hails from, and he doesn’t seem interested in carving a kingdom. His warband swells though, and he has recently attracted the interest of The Druidic Council. Humans, dwarves, orcs and Dunmaol elves have all been seen riding with Rutog, which speaks to his ability to lead. Does he have some agenda which attracts such a wide diversity of warriors?
Once only simply sources of lighthearted amusement and sometimes distrust due to their roguish nature, bards have become the target of something else since the Godswar – a great deal of respect and admiration. With formal kingdoms few and far between, and thus less formal couriers and other bringers of news, traveling minstrels have become some of the greatest sources of information to be found.
Not only is it dangerous to travel from place to place in many countries, general knowledge and learning has been lost to many of the great cities becoming more and more abandoned. The villages that remain often hunger for the arrival of a bard, bringing stories and amusement to grim times. Bards often act as doctors to towns they visit as well. Many find it useful to know the healing arts and have found it very profitable to some who would avoid visiting a druid.
There are many who can call themselves a bard, but few who wear the half note of The Bardic College of Alerash. Located on the Eastern coast of Brynfarthing, most of the city of Alerash is in ruins, but the Bardic College remains well kept as well as part of the old harbor for seafarers to set out, journeying to gather knowledge. The golden half note pin signifies that a Bard has spent at least a year at the College and is skilled in Music, Healing, History and Mathematics.
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