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Shattered Kingdoms
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Cabals

A cabal is an organization dedicated to its own ambitions and goals, aided by powers and abilities unique to itself. Each cabal is characterized by a rich history and by the special abilities of its members. Membership in these organizations is often by invitation only, as the cabals are typically on the lookout for qualified applicants, although those wishing to join may seek out known members of a cabal to express their interest. Many of the cabals have secret leaders or secret members, keeping their strength and influence from being easily gauged.

In order to join a cabal, you must first relinquish your membership in any other such organization, as divided loyalties are considered undesirable in a member. Generally, oaths to the cabal will be asked before membership is granted. And once you join a cabal, switching to another is looked upon with great disfavor and is usually not tolerated.

If you are admitted into a cabal, you are still required to adhere to the same standards of good roleplay that you displayed to gain admission. Cabal channels are to be IC as well. You may only have one character in a cabal or tribunal.

The following cabals have been known, at one time or another, to exist in the realms:

The Crucible of Shadows

Very little is known about the Crucible of Shadows, and what little is known is only uttered in whispers. The minions of this organization favor secrecy and the veil of shadows, and they draw their powers from a union of darkness and fire. In its quest for perfection, the Crucible of Shadows is known to ignore moral limitations, viewing them as weaknesses. Rumors also speak of a life dedicated to trials and discipline. Its members believe that they become greater by using the past as a vessel--a Crucible--into which they cast themselves and are re-forged stronger, wiser, and more deadly.

Druids of the Wild Reaches

This elusive group remains a mystery to outsiders, though a few of the tales told about them may contain some validity. The Druids are said to reside deep in the wilds of the kingdom of Ayamao, though this rumor is unconfirmed. They use their deep bond with nature and its magic to great advantage, especially when pursuing their goals of protecting the wilderness and the natural cycles of the world. Druids of the Wild Reaches are very secretive and tend to keep to themselves, but when they do involve themselves in the realms, they are quick, decisive, and efficient.

Druids
Fists of the White Swan Fists of the White Swan

In the high peaks of central Zhenshi, somewhere above the city of Nerina, rests a small monastery dedicated to the Fists of the White Swan. The Fist is an order dedicated to Enlightenment, Discipline, and the Virtues of Light. As a whole they tend to be a reclusive lot and usually come down out of the peak only rarely to tend to disputes that the citizens of Nerina cannot handle themselves. A few members, however, do enjoy making pilgrimages to the other kingdoms to help bring order to the lives of their citizens. Their discipline in melding the powers of the body and the mind make them formidable foes.

The Hammer of Light

Deep within the forest of Morea, located to the north of Exile in the Kingdom of Taslamar, lies a shining white castle whose inhabitants are dedicated to the protection of the land and the purification of evil in all of its forms. This group of crusaders call themselves the Hammer of Light, and can be found on their warhorses riding throughout the various kingdoms righting wrongs and fighting injustice. The Hammer is also the military arm of the ruler of Taslamar and has vowed to heed the kingdom's call to arms when necessary, which is all too often in these troubled times.

Hammer
Harlequin The Harlequins

Very little is known about this group. It is said that the Harlequins hold sway over a mysterious place, where things are not what they seem. Elsewhere in the realms, the Harlequins have been accounted for a series of seemingly random tricks, events, and ambushes. They have never been caught, and their presence is revealed only when they wish it so. Their behavior could perhaps be best described as erratic, and they are just as prone to committing random acts of kindness as acts of treachery and violence. It would be foolhardy to outguess them, as the Harlequins' actions are reliably unreliable.

The Midnight Council

Rumors abound where the Midnight Council is concerned, but there are a few facts known in the realms. The group is an elite order of the brightest and most talented military minds within the Empire of the Bright Star. Although technically under the authority of the Emperor, the Midnight Council has great leeway in its control of the legions that police the Empire. The name of the council came about because of the ornate midnight plate armor that elite members wear to council sessions. Of course, since no one knows where the council hall is located, this is just another rumor.

Midnight

Tribunals

A tribunal is an organization dedicated to the governance of a particular kingdom. Tribunals are responsible for maintaining and upholding the law within their realms and in some governance of the kingdom's citizens. As with cabals, membership in these organizations is often by invitation only, as tribunals are typically on the lookout for qualified applicants, although those wishing to join may seek out known members of a tribunal to express their interest.

In order to join a tribunal, you must first relinquish your membership in any other such organization, as divided loyalties are considered undesirable in a member. Generally, oaths to the tribunal will be asked before membership is granted. And once you join a tribunal, switching to another is looked upon with great disfavor and is usually not tolerated.

If you are admitted into a tribunal, you are still required to adhere to the same standards of good roleplay that you displayed to gain admission. Tribunal channels are to be IC as well. You may only have one character in a cabal or tribunal.

Map of the Northern Wastes The Black Hand

The Black Hand are the iron fist who serve Krychire's rulers, the Council of Necromancers. The Black Hand is made of local clan-chiefs, powerful magi, and others who have proven their worth in the desolate North. Their orders are to enforce the laws of province with all the prejudice and sadism they can muster. At the beck and call of the Hand are numerous creatures summoned from the darkest pits of the Hells, barely restrained by their masters. Many of the tribesman from the surrounding area balk at such evil magics, but those that have the stomach and the desire for the spoils the Hand offers can work their way up this social ladder, slick with the blood of those who didn't succeed.

Guardians of the Alliance

The Guardians of the Alliance are tasked as their name implies, to protect the Ayamaoan Alliance and lead its armies in times of war, and guide its people wisely and honorably in times of peace. They serve as the keepers of law and justice for all the lands of the Alliance, maintaining a credo of equality for all the peoples therein.

As the flower of the Alliance both militarily and diplomatically, many citizens seek to join the Guardians whether they be military strategists, or aspiring politicians. Those few who are accepted are presented to the public as the paragons of all the virtues their lands are said to uphold, the leaders, protectors, and the future of the Alliance.

Map of the lands of the Ayamao
Map of the Domain of Zhenshi Talons of the Feathered Dragon

Within the Domain of Zhenshi, the Talons of the Feathered Dragon have been the special guards of Zhenshi since being appointed by the Fists during Emperor Li's reign. Since that time, the Talons have evolved to be the tribunal of Zhenshi reporting only to the Council of Priests, the theocratic ruling body of Zhenshi. Composed of citizens of the Domain of Zhenshi, its members are no longer exclusively of the griffon race, but comprised of various alignments and races from the neutral population that they serve.

The Peacekeepers

Established by the renowned King Taslamar, the founder of the Free City of Exile, the Peacekeepers were meant to function as the protectors of the citizens of that fair city. For centuries they have risen to defend their beloved city from all hostile threats. For nearly as long, they had acted on behalf of and under the shadow of the most noble Hammer of Light, who made up the functioning army of Taslamar and acted as protectors of Exile. However, due to conflicts of interest between the Hammer of Light and the laws of the nation, the young King Gerevan sought a means by which to flush out corruption and inner conflict. To this end, he separated the Peacekeepers and the Hammer of Light, separating their functions. Now the Peacekeepers remain ever vigilant, striving to be virtuous and fair in their duties.

Map of Taslamar
Map of Uxmal Uxmal

The lawless Kingdom of Uxmal does not have a tribunal.

The Midnight Council

The Midnight Council cabal also rules as the governing tribunal in the Empire of the Bright Star.

Map of the Empire of the Bright Star

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