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Primary Author(s): BOTE
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"Within the Darkness of the Chapel, Zyzrasil looms over that of his Prophets and ushers for his stygian influence. It is not because we must follow him - but because the world burns too brightly with the feeling of false hope."
- Jeidra, the Queen of Avarice
- 1 History
- 2 Characteristics
- 3 Magical Abilities
- 4 Summary
The Chapel of Deceit: Origins
The Birthplace of Damnation. The Hallway of Thieves. The Chapel of Deceit. All are names for the realm lorded over by Zyzrasil, the God of Darkness, and the beginning point of his experiments, a guarded sanctuary against his fear. It is in this location of dim gloom that the shadowy beast makes his home and hides from sight, and where he plots to overthrow his fear and shroud the world in darkness.
Should the lowest of light make its way to his Chapel of Deceit it would mean ruin for him, pain and agony beyond even his own comprehension. Should he leave but in the depths of the darkest nights, the same might occur. A mental struggle was the only balancing factor to this - A question nagging consistently at the dark recesses of his warped mind. How would he pursue his dream? How would a being that could not touch the light extinguish it?
The answer did not come from himself.
It was in one of his many slumbers that the doors of his chapel were so gently knocked on, and in this the great being of Zyzrasil stirred. He waited. And when those doors did open, no light came flooding in. Instead, cloaked within shadow, his own domain, approached a youth - a girl of the name Ophelia. This aggravated woman did not ask, but demanded action - demanded Zyzrasil grant her what she needed, to accomplish his mission. Rudeness that would in almost all cases, result in the death of the aggressor. But she bore with her the Shadeclothe, and that alone spared her life. Zyzrasil sought to hear her words, a flowing mass of shadow and darkness that encapsulated Ophelia, leaving her to stand and speak in a pit of nothing.
But they discussed it. Ophelia spoke, and Zyzrasil listened. Never before had this vile entity met a mortal with so much desire to serve him, and here stood one offering her life before the God she claimed as her own. Silent deliberation was all that Zyzrasil had to offer, for in his many years of hiding, coherent speaking lay far from his reach. Inevitably, her words sparked in him an idea. The eldritch amalgamation of darkness and thought took the Mortal woman, and slew her when she had finished.
With a dying body, her soul was preserved. Mutated. Changed. The first experiment by the God. Binding her soul within a mask, he let her transcend her body in the form of a shapeless wraith. A being of no form beyond the physical manifestation of the curse laid upon its head. And so Ophelia took forth the name of Jeidra, and became the first of the Darkspawn.
A first experiment complete, many remain.
The power he gave to Jeidra was grand indeed, as her transcension took not only to her body, but as well her mind. It warped and twisted her mannerisms in part with the will of Zyzrasil, something he took great pride in. This once-mortal, now granted eternal life and a willingness to serve. But in part, the great God of Shadow had failed; for neither could Jeidra leave his halls and enter the light without the same pain and suffering he felt.
His experiment was repeated twice more. The second of a human bandit by the name of Gael, reborn as Glaedr. The third of a Winter Elf by the name of Filandran, reborn as Haetir. Though these three took upon themselves the title of the Prophets of Shadow, in the eyes of their maker they stood as failures. The three strongest beings he would create, but unable to accomplish their purpose in the world. A God however, has an eternity to live. An eternity to thrive. An eternity to try.
One could only guess how many years it took for his ritual to be perfected. For the God of Darkness it seemed an eternity. Zyzrasil mastered the ability to capture a soul from those dead by his hand, manifesting it into an accursed mask imbued with the smallest portion of his power. In this, he could transcend new Darkspawn, capable of acting in the light, to destroy the light. Being not as powerful as his three Prophets, but able to pursue his dream in full.
So the race of Darkspawn is born, heralds of dusk, and those who flee the dawn.
The Prophets of Shadow
These three beings, once mortal, have turned to the first three Darkspawn, bearing within themselves immense power to manipulate the darkness and snuff out the light. Known to mankind as only their titles, these three individuals are by all means demi-gods in their own right, and to attempt to conflict one would surely equal their deaths.
But these beings cannot leave the Chapel of Deceit, but in the darkened nights of Anoma, where the moon lay unseen to mortal eyes. In their appearances, entire villages for one, or entire cities for more, will find their lights snuffed out in an instance. The appearance of a Prophet of Shadow is never one bearing good tidings, but either to satiate their ingrained lust for blood, or - perhaps in the process of the former - carry away those of similar ideals to themselves to the Chapel of Deceit, where they will be reborn as a Darkspawn themselves.
Jeidra, the Queen of Avarice
In life this Prophet of Shadow was known as Ophelia, a youthful woman with a fear of mankind. She had seen many atrocities performed, and as such found herself flinching at so much as a knock upon her door. In her fear, she sought far and wide for a way to hide - inevitably coming across the Shadeclothe. With this in her possession, she fled her home and began to act in secret. Though the artifact bore a corrupting presence on her mind, changing the once kind and frightful girl into someone who reveled in the act of death, of stealing, of lying or cheating. It whispered to her, driving her to flee the land of man. And in her wanderings she came upon the Chapel of Deceit, becoming the first of the Darkspawn. Eventually she lost possession of the Shadeclothe to mortal hands - Though will do all that she can to ensure that it returns to her grasp in the future. Jeidra often takes a calm mindset, taking those who lay silently corrupt, and stewing in their own lack of ability, as lessers of her kind.
Glaedr, the King of Gloom
Once, Gael banditted the roads at night. It was in this line of work he came upon a shifting in the shadows. Believing it to be a potential foe, he and his men rode forth upon their steeds, weapons drawn. In this instant all but he were slain - cut to shreds as ribbons of darkness tore through the night. Even the horse he rode upon collapsed on top of his own gravely wounded form. Looking up he did not see the dark grassland, but instead the open doors of the Chapel of Deceit. An enigmatic, shapeless mass of energy did take him then, tearing his soul from his body and turning him into the second of the three Prophets. Reborn he was, taking on the name of Glaedr. So it was that his mind became altered with the will of the God of Shadows, and so it was that his wrath made itself manifest. He became one of the more violent of the three, turning murderers and bandits into lessers of his kind.
Haetir, the King of Thieves
Filandran was made a Prophet of Shadow as the last of the experiments of Zyzrasil before his eventual success. A Winter Elf in life, he took often to stealing wherever he could. In his youth it began as pocketing things that lay unattended. Eventually he learned to take from the pockets of others - Until he began planned robberies, heists, and so on. Eventually he accumulated enough wealth from others that when he looked upon it, he didn’t know what to do with it. And so the question pressed in his mind - Why? Why did he steal as he did? - It was not a question he could answer. But he didn’t stop, until one evening where he went to his stash to place his “earnings” of the day away, to find everything missing. With the door shutting behind him, he was left in utter blackness. In this, the God of Shadows made his move - casting aside the mortal vessel of Filandran, and rebirthing him as Haetir, the King of Thieves. This quiet, calculating prophet often appears to those who steal, turning them into lessers of his Kind.
Though called Darkspawn, these creatures of gloom and shade are the lesser variants of their lineage - Creations of the God of Shadows beneath the Three Prophets, but with a far more active role in the world. They are incapable of creating more of themselves without the aid of one of the Three Prophets, who in turn bring those to-be-changed to the Chapel of Deceit to be altered via the will of Zyzrasil. Though the Darkspawn are lesser, by no means are they beings to scoff at - proving effective in all manners of villainous behavior.
Physicality - Masks of the Darkspawn
When turned, a Darkspawn is drawn forth from their mortal body and created once more - reborn as a curse-bearing mask of the God of Shadows, Zyzrasil. The mask forms the foundation, and in truth is the one and only body a Darkspawn requires - a wraithlike essence of umbral origin extending out from it to form their body, oftentimes warped and disrupted at first glance, but always roughly humanoid.
This mask is sturdy, mortal hands finding difficulty in destroying it. Potent magic or multiple heavy blows to the mask in a short amount of time are required to shatter it, resulting in the destruction of the soul of the Darkspawn; incapable of being brought forth again, lest of the direct will of a godly power in the same instance that they die.
Though a Darkspawn is only a mask, and their normal forms are incapable of worldly interaction, they are capable of possessing either a deceased body or a suit of armor, should their mask be made the face of such an entity. If they are to possess a body, it will never heal from any given wounds, but nor will the Darkspawn feel pain from any actions done within. If they are to possess an inanimate suit of armor, the strength applied will be of a similar nature to their once mortal selves.
- Darkspawn are, physically, a mask. Placing the mask upon a corpse will allow the Darkspawn to act through it. The same as armor. The mask cannot change shape once made initially.
- Destroying a Darkspawn’s mask will result in immediate and permanent PK except in cases of godly intervention - Appropriate events necessary.
- A Darkspawn when neither possessing a corpse or a suit of armor has a base speed of 10, when possessing a corpse has a base speed of 8, and when possessing a suit of armor has a base speed of 6 regardless of the armor quality.
- If left without a corpse or armor, a Darkspawn will appear as an amalgamation of umbral essence, incapable of physical interaction with the world.
- Should a non-Darkspawn wear the mask, the Darkspawn will be capable of communicating with the individual telepathically. The Darkspawn could remove themselves at any point if not in Bright Light.
- Corpses do not heal. A darkspawn who ruins their corpse cannot recover it. Any close inspection will reveal a corpse a Darkspawn inhabits as exactly what it is; a corpse.
- A silver, platinum, or Holy-Based weapon will cause great pain in a darkspawn, as will flame. Otherwise, they feel no sense of pain.
- A Darkspawn cannot FTB.
Physicality - Light and Darkness
Zyzrasil and his three Prophets find themselves crippled by the presence of any form of light, with comfort found only in the dark recess of the Chapel of Deceit. The Darkspawn as we know them are lesser forms of these great entities, and as such bear a certain level of common discomfort due to the presence of the light - but they are not weakened to it as their greaters. This allows for Playable Darkspawn to roam around, blending into communities and performing their acts of chaos without constant agony.
- Darkspawn feel uncomfortable, as though covered in bugs, while within daylight.
- While in a dimly lit space or complete darkness, certain spells may grow stronger.
- Some spells are unable to be performed in daylight.
Mentality - The Wretched Abominations of Zyzrasil
The Darkspawn undergo great mental strain alongside the physical changes at their creation. Their minds, warped with the essence of their Lord. In this, Darkspawn gain a lust for the darker parts of society - murder, theivery, deceit. This horrendous alteration leaves a Darkspawn as truly a fiend, incapable of love and affection in the romantic sense. Over time their mind continues to devolve into a hellish state, one to leave a normal man crippled in fear. But for a Darkspawn, this hell is their freedom. To stand within a maelstrom of chaos is one of the few acts that grant a Darkspawn peace of mind and true clarity.
- A Darkspawn finds themselves truly enjoying their acts of chaos, seeking to destroy all manners of light in the world. These changes occur gradually over two weeks IRL.
- A Darkspawn may not love in a romantic sense. They may feel affection and guardianship, reserved mostly for fellow Darkspawns or those they were already friends with in life.
Darkspawn gain a number of abilities at their creation, learned naturally through their own experiments. It is through their practice that they manipulate their own energy - the umbral essence that forms their wraithlike body - to form spells. These spells exist to help a Darkspawn in their goal of destroying all light in the world, though some are weak to this very essence. Some spells will grow unusable in Daylight, whereas others may grow stronger in the Dark.
Darkspawn have limits on the casting of their spells however, as a piece of the energy that creates them is consumed in each casting. As such, they may cast six of their abilities in total. If they use all six of their abilities, the Darkspawn is reduced to being a motionless mask for one full day IRL before regaining themselves at one spell use. Beyond this, they gain two of their spell uses back per day IRL.
- If a Darkspawn is reduced to being a mask, they may do nothing but communicate telepathically with someone who wears them.
- Spells are considered to be one action unless stated otherwise.
[ Return Unto Death ]
The most basic ability of the Darkspawn, they may form a gateway leading to the Chapel of Deceit in areas of utter darkness. This is usable only outside of combat, allowing them to return to the place of their creation and to Zyzrasil, their Lord. This realm is accessible only to the Darkspawn, and any attempts to bring a non-Darkspawn within would result in both the death of the Darkspawn and the one they attempt to bring. This spell may not be used in combat, and does not take a use of the Darkspawn’s spells.
[ Claw Unto Life ]
A form of attack, this spell allows a Darkspawn to swipe out at a foe while in their incorporeal form, their umbral essence gathering to their claws in the moment of striking. This bypasses all forms of armor and defense, though does not physically harm the opponent. The damage dealt is psychological; causing the individual to feel a great deal of excruciating pain from the location struck, lasting for upwards of 3 IRL days. If this spell is cast in a location of utter darkness, the Darkspawn leaves behind a physical marking of the curse; an ugly black scar that does not bleed. In this case, the wound struck is considered unusable for the duration of the three days, but this spell may still never kill.
[ Shift Unto Shadow ]
No abilities of the Darkspawn stand out quite like this one; the ability to shift the essence of their body to form physical masses of darkness. A tendril of shadow that attaches to any surface of the Darkspawn’s desire, including their own body. They have a limit of five meters to initially create these, though they may manipulate them from up to twenty meters away. The creation of one tendril takes the action of the Darkspawn, while the manipulation of up to a maximum of three takes its own action. These tendrils may be up to a maximum of three meters long, and can take on varying shapes; a limb with sharpened talons, a spiked tail, etcetera. The physical density these are limited to is iron.
[ Step Unto Darkness ]
The Darkspawn may shift forth through the shadows, appearing from one spot of darkness to another. In this, they momentarily pass through the Chapel of Deceit before reappearing at their target destination. While normally the Darkspawn may travel up to sixteen meters with this spell, it is limited to half of that within Daylight. This spell may not be used to access areas that one could not access normally in-game, such as through a wall(though if you have door perms/could get to that spot MCly this is fine). This spell is only considered a part of the Darkspawn’s movement and not their action; though they may not cast a second ability on the same turn that this is cast.
[ Rage Unto Sin ]
The ultimate power of the Darkspawn, they may form a gate to the Chapel of Deceit within the darkness of their own body, and in turn channel great strength to themselves. This spell cannot be cast while a Darkspawn occupies Armor or a Corpse, and causes their mask to shift and grow into an exoskeletal state over the darkened essence of their incorporeal body. This spell allows them to far surpass the limitations of their once mortal body, operating at thrice the strength and speed of a normal warrior. This spell however, is not one they may willingly cast - but rather a feat that overcomes them naturally in moments of intense wrath. In return for this great boon is a great price as well; the Darkspawn is locked within their mask, unable to leave it at any point until they are brought before one of the Three Prophets, who could return them to their previous states. This ability lasts until the end of the current encounter, and takes two actions to completely manifest.
[ Plea Unto Lords ]
This final ability granted to the Darkspawn is considered the most horrendous and vile of all of their practices, as well as the most dangerous to them and all nearby. When three Darkspawn gather together, they may perform a single ruthless ritual to summon one of the Three Prophets to their location, in doing so sacrificing a live person. This communion between the Darkspawn and the Prophet can go in any direction, from the Prophet killing the Darkspawn to aiding them. Most often however, this ritual is used to introduce a new Darkspawn candidate to the Prophets; though this cannot be the person sacrificed.
The Darkspawn exist as entities of darkness underneath Zyzrasil, foes to the Light and any form of holy presence. They exist to spread their chaos and overthrow the reign of Qhethys and Ralios, the two foes of their dark Lord. For those that play these Creatures, a few final rules of thumb follow:
- Small flavor actions, such as shaping darkness aesthetically, are allowed.
- Using certain spells in aesthetic RP circumstances does not consume spell slots if it’s in good fun and nobody is hurt from it.
- A Darkspawn is just a mask. Anything else, such as their wraithlike body or a possession, is an extension of their magic.
- A Darkspawn may float in place, but they may not fly.
- A Darkspawn cannot FTB or hold a romantic relationship.
- Darkspawn hate the light and those who relish in it.
- Flame, Silver, and Platinum are the only things a Darkspawn physically feels - in the form of excruciating pain.
- A Mask destruction for a darkspawn is considered a PK except in certain event-related circumstances. The soul of the Darkspawn is destroyed.
- The wraithlike body of a Darkspawn must look roughly humanoid, but can be as warped or corrupted as the Player’s choosing.
- A Darkspawn may only be created within the Chapel of Deceit, brought there via a Prophet, and truly turned via Zyzrasil.