Loremasters

The Second Era dawned with the slow healing of the lands and the gradual dispersal and condensation of the mile-high clouds of steam – mists generated from the evaporation of much of the waters of the ocean in the great fires and explosions each Order had cast upon the other. Slowly, plant life began to grow again on the new lands as rains cleansed them. Animal life recovered and multiplied. The levels of the sea rose, and lands that had been connected were sundered by new waterways. The few peoples who had survived the cataclysm were without order or civilization, barely clinging to life itself.

My fellows, know this: gone are the days when Kulthea was a garden. The chill breath of the Void is freezing our world to death.

Lydek Terisonen
Speech to the Assembled Loremaster Council, Karilon
2250 Third Era (of Ire)

It was in the last two thousand years of the Era that sudden and startling changes began to take place.

Without fanfare or apparent synergy (though all at approximately the same time), Loremasters appeared across the Shadow World. They wore many guises, spoke every tongue, and held knowledge critical to the survival of these infant peoples. No one but the Loremasters themselves knows from where they came, or indeed how many there were; Loremasters will not speak of their origins. There is no doubt, however, that they are unmatched masters of the Essænce, except by the Lords of Essænce themselves. It is rumoured that the Loremasters are immortal even as were the first Lords of Essænce, or as the rustic Elven-kind are now, but this too is not known for certain. Loremasters tend to wander from place to place, rarely staying with a single culture for more than a decade or two.

Under the tutelage of the Loremasters, civilizations flourished. Peoples learned the ways of language, agriculture, and the working of stones and metals. Centuries elapsed, and Loremasters came and went from various lands, always available to teach. They taught only things that their students were readily able to grasp; no great leaps of social advancement or technology were offered. It is entirely possible that these teachers were not different generations of Loremasters but the same group, circulating through the widely separated lands and only returning to places that they had been after many hundreds of years.

They surveyed all lands, all cultures and saw the fall and rise of all realms.

There was a light like a thousand sons rising suddenly, but it was in the north, not east over the mountains. I turned away from the brilliance, but a moment later I was assaulted by the sound – and a hot wind which nearly knocked me to the ground. I did not realizse
it then, of course, but I had just seen the end of Zor.

Ilmaris Terisonen
4980 Second Era

The most important event in the early part of the Second Era is the founding of this College of Loremasters. The existence of the Loremasters are often dismissed as folktales, but is widely accepted among the educated (like at Nomikos). However, since it is so far in the past, the accounts are lacking, though it is believed that some of the first Loremasters are still alive, most notably it is thought that Kirin T’thaan is still a powerful member of the ancient organization.

According to history, Andraax, at the beginning of the Second Age, went to the Isles of Námar-Tol (?), an enclave of Iylari Elves. There he met Kirin T’thaan and Ilmaris Terisonen. Together with a number of other wise immortals, they decided to begin the monumental task of gathering the entire world’s lore in a great repository. This was (is?) presumably the home of the Loremasters, where exactly that is, no one but the Loremasters knows. In fact, the gathering of this group marks the beginning of the Second Era.

Námar-Tol, as mentioned above, is one of the first homes of the Elves after the Conflict. Their technical development was slow at first, but eventually they developed a sophisticated society. Though here is an example of where history is not quite certain, for many accounts places the beginning of Námar-Tol at least a century after Andraax supposedly went there.

The Essænce ebbs and flows, but the scales return to balance. Each time you take from the Essænce, you must in turn give back. For every day there will be a night; for every life there is a death.

Loremaster Doctrine
From the Book of Precepts

Established as an order to assist the development of the lands and people after the Interregnum, the period of chaos that signalled the end of the First Era, the Loremasters are well known to have meddled throughout all the lands of Kulthea.

More mysteries, more history may lie in the depths of the seas than in all the lands of the world.

Loremaster Kirin Tethan
The Record of Years
Karilon Archives

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Loremasters and Places of Learning

Loremasters are the Sages or keepers of wisdom on Kulthea. They are often overt advisors to rulers and leaders in many provinces. It is also assumed that they covertly act to support the fight against evil on the planet

All possess power over Essænce, but are reluctant to wield it flagrantly except in dire need. Many also believe they have access to special devices or technology that supports their usage of the Essænce. Ubiquitous yet rarely obvious, they consider themselves the stewards of civilization on Kulthea.

One of the three founders of the Order of Loremasters. Andraax [Ir. “first-claw”] was a renowned philosopher and historian, having penned numberless tomes chronicling the early ages of the world. While apparently not an Elf, Andraax was immortal. His final fate is unknown; some say that he is dead; others claim that we went insane (after either the Wars of Dominion or a journey to the East).

The library at Nomikos is one of the few institutions in Jaiman besides the Loremasters whose fame is widespread. The library and its group of scribes is located on an isle off south-central Jaiman.

This library is unrelated to the Gryphon College, which is a small, little-known centre of learning in northwest Rhakhaan.

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