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Author: Faelinn Shadowmoon
Date: 1004

Over three hundred years ago, the Order of Tyr waged war against the Cult of the Serpent to prevent the coming of the Serpent God into these Realms. On the eve of the battle, Sir Heathcliffe of the Order of the Hammer reveled with his men rather than pay homage to Tyr. In his arrogance, Sir Heathcliffe lead the assault on the Cultís temple without Tyrís blessing. The Tyran forces were wiped out.
Since the, the Cult of the Serpent lay dormant: watching, waiting for when the time was right to move again. The time came in the spring of the year 1003.

The Cult of the Serpentís goal has always been the re-birth of their god, referred to as the Great Serpent, to the Realms. In order for the Serpent God to manifest itself, it needed a soul from this Realm to give it that power. The more powerful the soul used, the stronger the Serpent would be. The Cult turned their attention to the race of elves, with their immortal souls, and the females of that race in particular. It is unknown why females were chosen, but there are speculations that it is due to a maidenís purity and resolve. In the spring of 1003, a suitable soul was found, one belonging to Faelinn of Fairhaven.
Before the Cult made its move, its presence was made know to Faelinn by a series of dreams involving snakes; dreams so lifelike, it was hard to tell what was real. During that time, Nagilum Tarien of Rhiassa was courting Faelinn and this somehow angered the Cult. Written missives warning that Nagilumís interest in Faelinn was unwanted and would lead to violence were sent. Warnings were dismissed by most involved and seen to be of little concern.
At the gathering known as the Tournaments of Respect, the Cult of the Serpent made their move. By influencing Faelinn, the Cult was able to get the two alone before help could arrive. Faelinn was captured and whisked away by magic and Nagilum was killed. Help arrived in time to see Faelinn and her captures disappear. A lone Cultist staying behind to finish off Nagilum was dispatched.

A rescue party was formed and Faelinnís body was recovered before the Cultists could return to the temple. Sometime during her capture, a mark was placed on her forehead connecting her soul to that of the Serpent God. The spell slowly began siphoning Faelinnís soul to the Serpent. Faelinn could not explain how the mark was made, as she had been dead for most of the two weeks of her capture. Even in death, the rune continued to drain her soul.

Not deterred by the loss of their sacrifice, the Cult turned its attention to the friends of those who had rescued the elf. Their next victim was Jeyde Thunderwalker. Kidnapped at the Green and Gold tournament, Jeyde was believed chosen because of her close friendship with Faelinn and her distant elven heritage. Brighthammer Half-Dwarven gathered heroes to mount a rescue for his intended. This rescue mission led them very close to the stronghold of the Cult. This effort was made possible by a traitor to the Cult of the Serpent. Since the Cult utilizes a strong magical barrier around its temple, the traitor used his inside knowledge of the ward to allow the party access. To release Jeyde, three keys were needed: one for each of the virtues held by the Cult. The trial of faith (a puzzle of sorts) and the trial of survival were passed successfully. However, the final trail still needed to be completed. Nagilum took it upon himself to bear the brunt of this trial. Here he laid down his hammer, shield and armor to learn spells for a year. This act tied his newly found magic to Jeydeís well being.
At subsequent gatherings it became apparent that those marked by the Serpent Cult were not returned whole. Jeyde now bore the same mark as Faelinn. Nagilum now bore a mark on his forehead, but different than the others. Through this mark, the Cult was now able to influence the perceptions of their enemies and have spell directly affect them. To the victims, it seemed as if their worst fear became a reality. Their friends and loved ones rotted as undead before their eyes. They never escaped the Cult in the first place and nothing was real. The only thing that was real to the victims was the death, pain, and destruction they caused.
One month before Faelinnís life was slated to end by the removal of her soul, Nagilum made a desperate effort to save her. Driven by some sense of purpose, perhaps love; he made his way to the Cultís temple. He made some sort of deal with the Chosen there, which released Faelinn from her fate. With her mark gone, the Cultís influences ceased. However, by freeing Faelinn, Nagilum agreed to become the Cultís prisoner.
At Summerfest, while in Middle Earth, a battered and bloodied Nagilum appeared claiming he has escaped from e Cult and had freed Faelinn. It should be noted that Nagilm appeared with the very armor, shield, and weapons that he sacrificed to save Jeyde a month ago. All divination supported the fact that this indeed was Nagilum, though some feared that this was not the case. Ignoring those doubting few, he was accepted back into the folds of Rhiassa and his friends.
On the Twilight Island, while attempting to restore a shire to the Beast, a way to save Jeyde surfaced. By honoring the Cult of the Serpentís virutes, the magic left Jeyde, but with a price. Faith: Faelinn gave up the worship of her goddess and in doing so her magic. Survival: Brighthammer gave up his dwarven heritage to become a full human. Sacrifice: Beast Avatar Rel Zhirah gave up his magic for one year.
In late October, a man wearing a Rhiassan tabard and carrying the blade Banishment was found dead in Rhiassa. The body appeared to have succumbed to the effects of old age. Nagilum was given banishment by Lord Daíoud, so how did this man come to have his sword?
As suspected by some, the Nagilum that ďescapedĒ from the Cult was a doppelganger, made with all the memories and emotions of the real Nagilum. All magics used to determine what he was previously had failed or been misleading due to the interfering of the Serpentís magics.
An expedition was lead to an abandoned temple of Tyr to better understand the Cultís ancient enemy and gain knowledge on their stronghold. The group was met at every turn my minions of the Serpent. Some old texts were recovered, but most importantly so was Nagilum. After spending months captured by the Cult, he willing fought against us, believing his friends were his enemies. Slowly, and with great effort, Nagilum was made to see the truth. He turned once more on the Cult and was returned to his nation as the spell-caster he became earlier in the year.
Nylis, a Chosen of the Serpent, appeared at the Feast of Victory claiming that she had turned her back on the Cult. She was taken to Ivory in Cainís custody as a prisoner in hopes that she would be of use in finding a weakness in the Cultís plans
As the winter months continued on, the Cult waited and planned again. This time they set their sights on the ones who have continually handed them defeat.

The Cult has made stronger allies and now the Serpent God walks these Realms.

They now turn their attention to the City of Ivory in the west. The stronghold of the Church of Aurora and merchant city has slowly been cut off from the eastern parts of the Realms. Raids along the trade road leading in and out of the city have become increasingly frequent. On her way back from Tuath Fasach, Faelinn was chased down and captured by a squad of Serpents. Over the course of a week, she was tortured for information about the defenses of Ivory and Rhiassa, and information about Cain, one of Ivoryís Councilors. She was sent back to Ivory, undead, with commands to assassinate Cain. He survived the attack, but Faelinn did not. A note among her belongings threatened the same fate to anyone that resisted the work of the Chosen. Faelinn was revived and the attacks against travelers to Ivory increased.

A Chosen named Assam leads the attacks against Ivory and has set his sights on its occupants. Using some infernal powers, he erected a black tower at Fey Reach from which he commands his troops. Assam has a score to settle with Nylis and yearns to rid himself of those that pose a threat to the Cult.

In Ivory, we wait for the time to come when his patience ends and the attack begins.

In my own words,

Created by Faelinn Shadowmoon (Leanne Micciche) at 10-07-05 09:35 AM
Last Modified by Faelinn Shadowmoon (Leanne Micciche) at 04-07-08 10:58 AM