The Enchiridion Valentia
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Common Language Edition, Released in 5103
Translated to Common by Lady Hilthia Waterlyon.
Notes about this edition:
This abridged edition of the Enchiridion Valentia was translated to Common in the year 5103 and is known as the First Common Edition. It is based on the seventeenth Faendryl edition released in the year 4407, abridged by the Scholars of the Valences in 5103.
The initial chapters are not released as part of this edition, as the Faendryl consider the wider population of sorcerers unable to appreciate the nuances of the art of summoning and interplanar travel.
Faendryl designations of demons and valences have been maintained, as these are the terms most recognized by all sorcerers, regardless of their race, and the terms tend to be untranslatable into Common tongue.
Enchira Tyr: Grik'Tyr
Perhaps the best-documented of all the valences, Grik'Tyr is marked by endless plains of boulders and slopes of scree. Although no mountain ranges have been charted, the terrain is uneven and precipitous cliffs are not uncommon. Charts stored in the repository show vast spiderwebs of shallow canyons cutting through the center of the explored region. Most are inaccessible by trail or pass, but easily navigated if a sorcerer enters the valence in their midst.
Both land and air are remarkably dry -- no sources of water have been found, and weather patterns involving snow or rain remain unobserved. Constant, strong winds batter the valence from ever-shifting directions, making shelter difficult to secure for any length of time. The sky possesses a flat, grey, overcast quality, with little definition to indicate clouds or movement in the atmosphere.
"Our foray, although short, was filled with challenge. Chesir and I were not able to enter Grik'Tyr through the same point in the veil due to vagaries in our rituals. We were not far apart, however, and use of the Light-endowed wand in my pack led my companion to me. We found ourselves in a small canyon, walls of blood red rock rising high on all sides, with little hand and footholds to bring us to its rim. When we did manage to scale the wall, having had to return to the ground three times to retrieve dropped gear we could not leave behind, we found ourselves on a thin sliver of stony ground that dropped away on two sides. As if our balancing act was not dangerous enough, we discovered a band of grik reconnoitering the area, presumably searching for other tribes. A small outcropping down one side of our perch offered us the cover we needed to avoid their attention, as we were not equipped to do battle that day, although I would have welcomed it after what had happened to my cousin." (Phentell Ualian)
The grik, which lend their name to the valence, dominate. They appear to be highly territorial, and most of the observed areas have been marked by the various grik tribes -- four have been counted -- with elaborate arrangements of boulders and rock that roughly match the burns observed on the thighs of these creatures. War appears to be a constant, and most battles begin with one tribe defacing or destroying the territorial boulders of another.
The other inhabitant of the valence, the imps, outnumber the grik, but the grik's ability to fly within their valence gives them the upper hand, and most imps have been intimidated into abject servitude to their more powerful neighbors. Imps have been used as pawns in the grik wars, forced to fight each other and the grik of the opposing side. Battlefield corpses of grik are usually consumed by the victors, suggesting the ongoing wars are motivated as much by the need for sustenance as territorial maneuvering. Dead imps are ignored, as their corpses melt into the rocky ground within a few minutes.
More strategically minded grik of the more powerful tribes have been able to turn battles to their favor by capitalizing on the imps' observance of the grik hierarchy, luring away large groups of imps from their opposition with well-placed orders and then slaughtering them.
"Our arrival brought us close to the shelter I had discovered previously, a makeshift cave of fallen stones that provided protection on three sides. How fortunate that we were able to take cover so quickly, for the quiet plain I had observed the week before was now awash with battle at fever pitch. Rings of grik'pwal winged through the sky, drifting over a standing army of hundreds of grik'tval, who were accompanied by hordes of imps. Although the tval outnumbered the pwal ten to one, the pwal were clearly winning the campaign. One or another would leave their sky-rings, diving to the edges of the army and calling away the imps with rasping cries the imps seemed helpless to ignore. The disintegration of the land-bound mass came with much slaughter of grik and imp alike, and the pwal cried victory with their ritualistic building of a tiered stack of stone within three to four hours of our initial observations." (Phentell Ualian)
The squat humanoid demons known as the grik are the dominant inhabitant of Grik'Tyr and are identifiable by their broad, leathery wings and taloned hands. Their wings sprout from their shoulder blades as arched, chitinous frames that support stretched, translucent skin that is heavily veined. Although the grik fly within their own valence, they have not been observed to do so when summoned, presumably because the environment is not conducive to the act, or perhaps the control of the summoning sorcerer prevents it.
"The grik'tval became agitated this morning, and I still do not know what upset him. He rose up on his feet and stretched his wings -- I truly thought he would alight for the sky. But after pausing there, trembling, for a few moments, he gathered an irritated look about him and set himself down again. Although I did not lose him, he was unwilling to do most simple tasks for a time, until I made my will most clear and he submitted again to my control." (Silariun Renellia)
Their hands have no fingers, but instead a variable set of sharpened talons. Usually two to five talons are paired with one opposable talon, giving the grik the ability to grip and manipulate items as well as spearing them. Their skin has a slight sheen and is completely devoid of hair.
The various types of grik demons differ in stature (although none rise to the height of a Faendryl), the number of talons on their hands, skin color, and eye color. Although they are actually well-coordinated and quick, they can appear to be lumbering and clumsy simply because of bulk, a general tendency toward disinterest, and apparent physical difficulties with the gravity of Elanthia.
Their eyes have slit pupils, which are particularly reminiscent of some renditions of Fash'lo'nae's symbol. The grik possess two eyelids that cover the eye in succession when it blinks. The inner lid is translucent, while the outer lid matches the hue of the grik's skin. When on alert or perturbed, the grik will only blink with their inner lid so as not to lose their vision.
They often can be seen moving their mouth as if speaking, but the only noise generally heard, unless bidden otherwise, is a deep-throated rumbling growl.
Four tribes of grik have been identified through summoning and observations within the valence. These groups can be distinguished by a distinctive set of brands on their thigh, which correspond to the shelf-like tiers of stone they build in their territories:
- Grik'trak - Single line branded on the thigh
- Grik'mlar - Two lines branded on the thigh
- Grik'pwal - Three lines branded on the thigh
- Grik'tval - Four lines branded on the thigh
Grik have a tendency to ignore most of what occurs around them when summoned. However, they do become agitated in the presence of imps or grik who are not of their tribe. They will occasionally attempt to wrest control of an imp from the summoning sorcerer, which can be dangerous if the Faendryl is not practicing perfect control.
"I have seen the grik's influence on the imps without having traveled to the valence. The imp was studying a patch of mournblooms rather closely when Bolotyn allowed the grik'pwal into the garden. When the grik spied the imp, he spread his wings and barked a series of harsh sounds. The imp was immediately taken and began to move away from the plants ... had I not stepped between and issued a strong command, who knows what the grik would have done." (Shyrelm Darhlith)
From the Book of Records
The grik was first summoned by Abdullahi Hazalred Faendryl.
After several grik had been summoned, the tribal differences among them were recognized by comparison of their description and behavior when together. Because perfect records were not kept, the summoning of each distinct tribal grik is in dispute, but the record has been set down as such:
*Grik'trak was summoned by Thanris Nhartien Faendryl.
*Grik'mlar was summoned by Dimerian Upharduin Faendryl.
*Grik'pwal was summoned by Bolotyn Xendrem Faendryl.
*Grik'tval was summoned by Dimerian Upharduin Faendryl.
The first grik’s tribal affiliation is unknown, as the pattern of burn marks was not recorded fully.
The imp is vaguely humanoid in appearance, although more slender than any race, with a narrow torso and spindly legs and arms. It is hairless, with chalky white to pale grey skin that appears smooth, but gathers in wrinkles around its joints and neck, as if its musculature has shrunk. The majority of imps are quite short, not reaching even halfling or dwarven height.
The face of the imp is featureless, except when being studied or addressed by one of the Elanthian races. At this time, facial features will appear, usually as a rough mimicry of whomever has most closely captured its attention. In general, this is usually the sorcerer that has summoned it. Imps can shapeshift to any form they desire, but few have actually witnessed this occurrence, as the imps are so impressionable by what is going on around them that they are often jolted from their activities. It is not unusual, however, to observe partial shifts or the molding of an arm or head into a different object or being.
"Shyrelm turned to speak with me and I spied the imp over his shoulder. It bounded to a tall urn formed of grey-streaked marble. As I watched, his torso bloated and his arms, which had been raised over his head, began to meld and lengthen, then widen at the palms. Before I knew it, there was an exact copy of the urn where the imp had been. I bid Shyrelm to look, but my voice was a startle and the imp was there again, cowering in the shadow of the container." (Bolotyn Xendrem)
Unlike the grik, imps are rarely still and are constantly moving about their environment, inspecting and studying everything in their path. They are also unafraid of most obstacles and creatures and often spend a great deal of time mimicking their object of interest to understand its nature.
Imps normally remain silent, but when bidden to speak or particularly alarmed, a breeze will spring up around them and spread outward in waves. This light wind carries their voice, which can rise to a cacophony pitch, as if many beings were speaking at once. Their message, if any discernable one can be found, usually rings clearest over the wave of noise.
"I had left my study for but a moment, when I heard the most awful sound. It was a thousand speaking voices, some loud and others soft, all competing to send some message of sure horror. Trivalian, too, was screaming. I returned quickly and found him lying on the floor, hands clutched to his head, although the sound was gone. His falchion had slid across the floor and beneath a settee, most unusual as he is normally quite staid. The imp stood next to my desk, utterly still save for a rhythmic ripple passing over his skin. Trivalian refuses to speak of it and, alas, I may need to release him from employment." (Shyrelm Darhlith)
When in the presence of both a grik demon and their summoning sorcerer, imps can become noticeably agitated due to a feeling of conflict regarding who should be their master. Grik will often tease and taunt imps on this valence, and when they are in the same room, the sorcerer has a higher risk of losing control over the imp due to the conflict.
From the Book of Records
The imp was first summoned by Shyrelm Darhlith Faendryl.
The hierarchical affiliation with the grik was first noted by Shyrelm Darhlith Faendryl and Bolotyn Xendrem Faendryl, when one's imp was first observed with the grik'pwal summoned by the other.
Enchira Tyr: Shien'Tyr
The repository contains no maps or charts of this valence.
This valence, which takes its name from the first demon summoned, is completely shrouded in darkness. Attempts to study the area have been thwarted by the valence's tendency to completely absorb and consume all available light sources, both magical and mundane, within seconds. Sorcerers have reported that, during those seconds, they have been able to make out a dark, drifting haze and a featureless ground. Further recollection of these features has been unforthcoming, despite numerous attempts. Those carrying parchment for immediate recording of their observations are so disoriented by the absolute darkness that their efforts are revealed later as nothing more than a collection of blots and lines.
"Finally, I resorted to a torch which sputtered almost immediately. Although I gained distinct impressions of the air, I cannot now say what it was -- whether it was cool or warm, moist or dry. But, it was dense with a smoke-like substance that drifted constantly. There never was clarity of vision, nor was I able to gain a sense of depth to tell how far I could see ... I want to say the light traveled away, but not of its own accord. It was as if it was picked up like a corporeal form and moved rapidly." (Stenlavian Gherdia)
"Rather than bother with sight, I sought to discover what I could feel of the ground. It is strange, but I knew what I touched then, but not now that I set ink to parchment. It was assuredly smooth but other than that, I am at a loss ... I took a few steps in several directions but never encountered an obstacle of any sort." (Malieria Whisperal)
Sorcerers who have focused on movement rather than sight have discovered no features. Occasionally, a sensation of traveling uphill will be reported, felt only in the weakening of the calf muscles in the legs while walking. The cant of ground is felt and observed in no other way, and it is uncertain if it is real or imagined. On these journeys, sounds from the valence are often heard, usually in very close proximity to the sorcerer. When searching for the source of these noises, which resemble the sounds of a crackling fire or rapidly dripping water, nothing has been found in the immediate vicinity, suggesting that the emanations are from the atmosphere itself or that sound travels great distances without losing its timber or tone.
Returning sorcerers have difficulty readjusting. Most report disorientation, acute sensitivity to sound, and a loss of depth perception. All of these effects appear temporary and abate gradually over time. Garments and other items that accompany the traveling sorcerer often change in appearance. Although the transformation is not well understood, the effect is that of the removal of light, or its inability to illuminate the item. Colors turn dark, and contrast is reduced. Generally, the items return to their normal state after a period of days or weeks.
"It was a clear, clean white with bands of silver when I left. Two days after my return it was dark grey, and even with the direct light of the lantern I could not make out the silver. Now, however, three weeks later, it has returned to its former hue. The magic remained wholly unchanged throughout." (Stenlavian Gherdia)
Because of the difficulties with sense upon this valence, its inhabitants, the shien and the aishan, have never been observed in their natural state. All observations regarding these demons come from those who have summoned them to this valence from theirs.
The shien, divided into two groups known as the shadowlings and darklings, resemble the imps in general shape, but are shrouded in a haze that is either greyish (shadowlings) or black (darklings). Both shadowlings and darklings occasionally appear with shrouds in hues of blue. This haze is not dissimilar from that observed on their native valence by sorcerers traveling there. Their form is substantial, but shifting, and it is not unusual to see their limbs or heads dissipate before a replacement coalesces from their surrounding shroud. Instead of moving their limbs and head individually, they move and turn bodily, the haze around them usually moving slightly faster than their substantial form, creating the impression of an echo in their movement. Their actions are sometimes slow, but possess an elegance and deliberateness that can be quite hypnotic for onlookers.
"The shadowling was definitely walking, but the drifting of its shroud gave it the appearance of hovering. As it made its way from the doors to the desk, it ignored the obstacles in its way. Parts of it would simply disappear and then reform on the other side, with little excess movement." (Fhenviel Waesvral)
The shien have an extremely acute sense of hearing due to their existence in almost total darkness, and they have developed the ability to use sound to their advantage, both for standard communication and to disable or kill perceived threats. Some shien have been able to hear conversations at some distance and then "repeat" them with perfect pitch and tone to their master.
They can also communicate with targets at a greater distance than other demons or Elanthian natives because of their ability to manipulate and direct sound. However, in order to do this, they have to have heard their target speak, so that they may locate them by listening and then direct their message appropriately. Usually, sound issues from them through their shroud, usually resembling a cylinder or orb of smoke that, when it reaches its target, wreathes the listener's head in haze as the message is delivered.
"After my manservant had been by and left again, I bid the darkling to deliver a message, something simple regarding my cloak. The shien paused momentarily, its haze drifting about it in a sort of circular fashion. I was about to repeat the command with more force, when a thin column of haze issued from it. The haze moved out in deliberate fashion, ignoring the light breeze that passed through my study. I did not see what happened then, but my servant returned looking rather startled, saying that my cloak was already being cleaned." (Fhenviel Waesvral)
"My first instinct was to move away from the haze as it drifted toward me, but, as there had been no conflict previously, I elected to let it do what it may. The meadow dimmed somewhat as my eyes were covered, but I could still see well enough. I could make out whispered groanings from all around me, which sharpened and focused into a single thread of conversation. It was Fhenviel, relating his story of his manservant this morning. It was as if the conversation was just taking place, Fhenviel's voice was mimicked so well." (Vindriala Ghormedia)
Although their faces have no features, they will often exert an expression mimicking humanoids nearby. The shrouding haze surrounding their heads will turn semi-solid with the mimicked form and hold it momentarily before letting it drift away.
Shien have very little interest in what goes on around them. The presence of demons from other valences, rapidly shifting environmental conditions, or even threat of harm do nothing to the self-absorbed drifting of the shien.
The similarities in appearance and abilities between the shien and the imps have been noted numerous times, but no definitive evidence exists to prove that they are related. The theory has been advanced that one or the other broke away from their native valence to the other and were subsequently changed by their experiences. That is, if the shien were once imps on Grik'Tyr who somehow broke away to Shien'Tyr, they gained the haze of their new valence and adapted their behaviors to its nature. It should be emphasized, however, that these are only theories. The origin of both demons, like all the others, remains cloaked in mystery.
From the Book of Records
The darkling was first summoned by Muiltrelle Silvius Faendryl.
The shadowling was first summoned by Nishmea Khalaron Faendryl.
Shien of a dark blue shade were first thought to be separate demons, and the record originally provided Fhenviel Waesvral Faendryl with the first summoning honor. However, the record was expunged after several dark blue shien were summoned and studied in close proximity to true grey and true black shien.
The aishan inhabit Shien'Tyr side-by-side with the shien. There does not appear to be any hierarchy between these demons, as neither has any distinct advantage over the other. In general, they ignore each other even when in close proximity.
The aishan themselves closely resemble the wolves of Elanthia, with some marked differences. They are substantially larger in height and bulk and covered with coarse, yet shiny, fur that is especially thick about the shoulders and neck, forming a ruff. They vary in shade from red to black, although, very rarely, an aishan will be all white. The aishan's fur feels insubstantial when stroked, the toucher's fingers sinking into and through the hair with an associated feeling of envelopment. The aishan's relation to its surroundings, however, indicates a fully solid creature. It is felt that the fur is a more substantial and permanent manifestation of Shien'Tyr's environmental haze.
"My hand sank right through, and I pulled back without thinking as it had disappeared up to the wrist. The aishan was undisturbed, as always, staring straight ahead. Even though the fur seems without substance, it is solid. The breeze ripples it, and when in contact with something unyielding, it is flattened and the aishan cannot pass through. Only when I touch it does it seem to lose its solidity." (Vaenrelle Xendrem)
The eyes of the aishan are entrancing. Large and pupilless, the hue generally matches that of flames of various temperatures -- yellow and gold to reddish black and light blue. The irises shift constantly, giving the impression of fire. Although the aishan are not blind, there is no indication that they rely on their sight overmuch. Peering into an eye of an aishan will provide a clear reflection of the viewer, as well as his background. Some sorcerers have reported disturbing visions in the eyes of the aishan, such as their own deaths, visitations of the dead, or some calamity of a personal nature. None have reported that these visions have been found true, and the experience is often explained away as an artifact of the perpetual motion of the irises.
"I saw myself, as I am ... then my eyes were missing, blood upon my cheeks, gore ... He was behind me, holding a short dagger similarly coated with blood. I looked behind me and there was nothing; I touched my face, nothing. When I looked again into the aishan's eye, it was just myself, as I am." (Nuriemdah Miensler)
Aishan, like the shien, have acute hearing as well as a keen sense of smell. They tend to rely more upon hearing and smell than upon sight and have a remarkable ability to sense and act upon what their summoners typically miss. Sorcerers who are suspicious of members of their households, or even their Palestra guardians, will often summon an aishan to coax out any wrong-doers.
Like their more domestic Elanthian counterparts, aishan tend to be loyal to their summoner while on this plane, even if mistreated. No other demon summoned has demonstrated such loyalty without strong command. They are often observed guarding the sorcerer, even when not bidden to do so, and will take issue with anyone, even friends, who are interpreted to bear ill will toward their masters. Their bite is brutal and can cause illness, break bones, or worse. Most aishan never close their jaws due to their oversized maw of highly sharpened teeth.
From the Book of Records
The aishan was first summoned by Vaenrelle Xendrem Faendryl.
The lack of hierarchical relationship was confirmed by Nishmea Khalaron Faendryl and Vaenrelle Xendrem Faendryl when shien and aishan were summoned in concert.
Enchira Tyr: Lorae'Tyr
Travel to Lorae'Tyr is forbidden by the Basilica. The seven sorcerers still present on this valence should be brought, upon their return, to the Basilica for questioning immediately. These sorcerers are: Levianthia Sherula, Wintherian Lontriel, Mleriand Lontriel, Finmielle Thenryl, Chournd Dralhavaen, Gerphend Yourliand, and Uritheam Boltreade. Any sorcerer attempting to circumvent Shieltine's Ward on Lorae'Tyr will be executed.
Lorae'Tyr possesses many features worthy of description, but the most striking is its interpretation of time. Traveling to this valence for even a short period of time can result in the loss of years on Elanthia. While within the valence, sorcerers have observed normal activity, such as foliage growth or geological decay, occur at varying rates, sometimes shifting speeds even as the sorcerer watched. The passage of time most certainly exists on Lorae'Tyr, but whether it is relevant to the valence's functioning at all is unclear. The demons who reside there seem unaffected and even oblivious to the temporal phenomenon, although the abyran appear to have compensated for it in a few ways more completely described in their section.
Sorcerers who have returned from travel to this valence have exhibited no ill effects from their absence. The length of time that passes in Elanthia appears to have no relation to how long the sorcerer stays in Lorae'Tyr -- some have been there for a few minutes and lost hundreds of years, while others have made extended stays of several weeks and found only a few days have passed in Elanthia.
"I passed through the veil at the Hour of Lumnis. I was there but a few moments, but when I returned I found myself in a completely different manor. The residents were quite startled to see me, and with some questioning I determined that I had been gone three hundred and ninety-two years. My manor had been sold, razed and rebuilt in my absence. I have aged not one bit." (Chournd Dralhavaen)
"I arrived at the edge of a large forest, closely grown with emerald trees crowned with great masses of leaves. I paused to consider skirting them or passing through, when my sight shifted and the forest changed. Trees fell, fires burned, trunks rotted away and the ground consumed them. This all occurred faster than I could comprehend and when another shift occurred, a waving meadow of thin grasses stood before me." (Chournd Dralhavaen)
Lorae'Tyr is perhaps the most colorful of all valences currently explored, due to both the nature of the resident demons and the natural environment. It is illuminated by no discernable source, but suffused with a sickly yellow hue that permeates even the close forests of the eastern plains. The overall climate is that of a swamp, with marshy ground and humidity predominating across the explored areas of the valence. Timeshifting occasionally provides more temperate environs, but the general tendency is toward moist bog lands.
Much of the vegetation resembles that found in Elanthia, although shapes tend to be more sharp-edged and angular and colors tend toward the dark, vibrant tones. Foliage is just as likely to be violet or blue as the expected green.
"The timeshifting stopped long enough for me to inspect some nearby plants. I was startled to spy what I thought was a wingstem. It was not the expected pale green, but deep indigo, and the leaves were deformed into diamond shapes that curled along the flat edges. The flowers were dark violet and although I swear it was wingstem, the differences in hue and shape gave me pause." (Uritheam Boltreade)
One of two flying demons of Lorae'Tyr, the verlok is composed of a metal framework overlaid with a covering of brilliantly hued feathers that are suspended over the metal, but not attached. These feathers emit a glowing light and often lend their brightness to the surrounding area. When they fall free, their properties can be employed by a skilled user to grant additional light to an area for a short period.
"If the feathers touch the metal, it is only by accident of wind or obstacle and I have certainly never observed it. They are otherwise perfectly suspended an inch from the surface. Resistance has met me each time I have pressed a hand to the feathers, although they are easy enough to manipulate when they are shed of their own accord." (Mleriand Lontriel)
The metal framework beneath these feathers is hollow, intricately jointed, and detailed. Almost all metals have been observed by sorcerers studying these demons, in the same proportion in which they are found in Elanthia. In size, verlok tend to match Elanthian barnyard fowl, rather than smaller birds. Despite their mechanical appearance and metallic construction, the verlok are quite graceful and dexterous. Although they spend time on the ground in Lorae'Tyr, verlok summoned to Elanthia are perpetually in flight, and will not venture into any area that might require them to land.
On Lorae'Tyr, the verlok live communally around large piles of twisted metal, always the same metal that make up the verlok of that community. New verlok emerge periodically from beneath the metal piles, and, when their lives draw to a close, they return to the pile to die.
"While pursuing a cloud of igaesha, we encountered a large pile of what appeared to be faenor. There was a tremendous clacking from all around as we approached, although we saw nothing extraordinary in the surroundings. My companion began filling his satchel with the smaller pieces, only to be startled by a rainfall of the greenish metal. From the top of the pile, a creature emerged, slowly at first, but, as its wings of burnt orange came free, it took speed and flight -- disappearing into the surroundings before we could study it fully." (Mleriand Lontriel)
They are constant noisemakers -- chanting, humming, and clicking nonstop. This seems to be the mode of communication among verlok, and their range of ability with sound allows them to imitate Elanthian speech with good accuracy.
Many theories have been advanced about the origin of the verlok, and debate rages among those who have studied them. Because Lorae'Tyr offers little clues about their beginnings, no particular theory has any more weight than another. Among the most commonly advanced theories:
- They are natural creatures of Lorae'Tyr, evolving from substances already available on the plane. To suggest that various metals exist exclusively on Elanthia is to adopt a narrow-minded view of multi-planar existence, say those who espouse this theory. Alloys that exist among the verlok come from intermingling of communities of different metals.
- They are the natural creatures of Lorae'Tyr and, furthermore, are the base origin of all metal, and that the metal in Elanthia comes from a previous upheaval that involved their passage en masse to Elanthia -- followed by their deaths. Other supporters of this theory suggest that the metal of Lorae'Tyr was transported to Elanthia by the Arkati or ur-daemons during their wars.
- They are the result of the work of a past inhabitant of the plane who is no longer present.
- They are the result of previous work by the igaesha or the abyran, but now fully independent.
- They are the result of experiments by Fash'lo'nae or Eonak, or some other member of the Arkati, that had interest in creating a race of metallic beings who could recreate themselves. Which Arkati is posited depends upon the theorist's personal beliefs.
- They are the result of efforts by traveling sorcerers from before the Valentia was created, who may live there still and simply have not returned.
From the Book of Records
The verlok'cina (the magical metals) was first summoned by Chournd Dralhavaen Faendryl.
The verlok'asha (the mundane metals) was first summoned by Mleriand Lontriel Faendryl.
The verlok'ar (the elemental metals) was first summoned by Chournd Dralhavaen Faendryl.
Within Lorae'Tyr, the abyran seem to have the most advanced society, with a clear hierarchical structure and organized culture. Two main classes have been identified: the abyran'sa, a priestly class, and the abyran'a.
In appearance, both classes are remarkably similar. They possess an elongated serpentine body rather than legs and fully formed arms that assist them with climbing. Although their tail can be quite long, they usually balance upright so that it curls about them, acting as a weighted balance. They can sit on both the front and back of their tail, allowing them to shift their point of view without moving their head.
Their skin is smooth, giving way to scales that diminish in size toward their tails. Like snakes, they slough off their skin occasionally, leaving behind translucent husks. Abyran consider these husks, along with lost scales, to be special and great care is taken to preserve them. The scaled portion of their body possesses some chameleon-like qualities, shifting in hue when the abyran is perturbed.
"We had walked quite far without the abyran'sa showing any signs of distress. The windstorm picked up, however, and blew a large limb down from a rowan tree. The sudden noise and movement startled the demon, sending her to the side of the path where she drew herself fully upright as her scales begin to turn the deep amber brown of the surrounding tree bark. It was difficult to follow the movement of her tail at this point, and a predator would have poor luck trying to anticipate her next action." (Gerphend Yourliand)
Their faces are distinctly humanoid, although they are lacking in ears and hair. Their eyes are round, without pupils, and they do not appear to ever blink. The crown of their head is fringed with finger-like protrusions, which move of their own accord, but it is unclear whether they serve any purpose. Their mouths are wide and thin-lipped, possessing two large, curved fangs. Both classes of abyran have long, slender tongues, although the tongue of the abyran'sa is forked. This forking, and the subsequent sibilant nature of their speech, is the sole difference between the two abyran classes.
Faendryl scholars theorized that the two classes do not arise from familial inheritance. Instead, the forked tongue of the abyran'sa is just as likely to appear in the offspring of two abryan'a -- and just as unlikely to occur from two abyran'sa. This was confirmed when a large study was undertaken by the Basilica under the supervision of Sarlen Lastin Faendryl.
On Lorae'Tyr, the abyran have constructed elaborate temples of stone. These buildings attempt to thwart the temporal shifting that occurs on the plane by consisting of multiple constructions that are joined by shared masonry at a central, overlapping point. At any one time, individual units within the structure may be destroyed or nonexistent due to fluctuations of time, but some part of the temple always remains standing.
"At most, we observed three structures, joined like leaves on a clover. Two of them were partially finished and seemed to flicker slightly in the yellow haze. A fourth was in ruins, the stones tumbled and overgrown with ivy." (Uritheam Boltreade)
None of these temples have been investigated thoroughly by traveling Faendryl, but they are thought to be the center of the abyran religion. Abyran have been observed to kneel in the presence of living serpents, even small snakes, and this has led researchers to believe that they worship these creatures or some form of serpent god. No connection between Luukos and the abyran is suspected, but the serpents that many Luukosian disciples keep have proven useful in the control of various abyran.
"I was gauging the reaction of the abyran'a to various items and creatures we encountered in the area. There was little to note until we happened upon a simple garden snake, the length of my hand and no longer. The abyran'a nearly lost its mind, lowering itself to the ground, arms outflung. The snake was understandably startled and made to move away. The abyran'a studied every movement carefully, speaking to itself as if it was taking every wriggle as a sign to be carried away and studied in-depth. I have seen this several times since, even with statuary." (Gerphend Yourliand)
From the Book of Records
The abyran'sa was first summoned by Gerphend Yourliand Faendryl.
The abyran'a was first summoned by Gerphend Yourliand Faendryl.
It is the igaesha of Lorae'Tyr that lend the valence its colorfully hued skies. The mist-like creatures, all lightly hued, tend to mass in large clouds that drift over the landscape. Altitude appears to be important, although the exact patterns of choice for each cloud remain unclear. These formations lend Lorae'Tyr its sense of atmosphere, and "rain" on this valence is usually the division of larger clouds into fogs that drift nearer to the ground until recombining with other fogs.
"When the verlok passed through a rippling cloud of igaesha overhead, the cloud began to churn and roll as if greatly disturbed. As we watched, the bottom of the mass peeled off, a thin layer that fell downward as if weighted by steel. It roiled against the ground, passing around our feet and the verlok's faenor pile with ease. After rolling perhaps a hundred yards, it lifted itself upwards, so high that we lost sight of it." (Mleriand Lontriel)
Although the clouds have a tendency to drift, individual igaesha are perfectly capable of directed and very quick travel. Formed of tiny droplets, the igaesha can contract and expand to accommodate any size space. They can also pass through most objects, even those that do not appear porous, without changing the nature of the material they have touched.
When perturbed, igaesha can have an acid-like effect that has a limited ability to dissolve anything with which they come in contact. This effect seems to only be present when the igaesha desires it, as their normal ability to pass through objects does no harm. There is no color shift or consistency change to indicate the quality of the droplets, but the igaesha does tend to move with swifter and more precise motions when angered.
"There was no change to the glass after the demon passed through it, even after a close inspection with a magnifying glass. However, much later, after the igaesha had been present for quite a long time and put on guard, it passed through the glass again. This time, the glass smoked and its colors ran together as if acid had been dripped across its surface. It did not dissolve, nor did it break, but its design was forever lost. The igaesha's form is as something reversible and how it controls the change, I do not know. Its appearance changed little aside from the swiftness of its movement." (Uritheam Boltreade)
Sorcerers who have studied the igaesha extensively have been able to discern few means of communication among the igaesha. When in cloud form, the igaesha move as one being and do not seem to be communicating within the cloud in any recognizable form. Igaesha who are separated from a cloud but in the presence of another will often pulse or swirl in regular patterns, suggesting that igaesha have both visual abilities and do communicate via movement if needed.
From the Book of Records
The igaesha was first summoned by Uritheam Boltreade Faendryl.
Were it not for an accidental summoning by Mharcuis Roahnn Faendryl, it is likely the grantris may never have been discovered. These demons, remarkable as the only demon from Lorae'Tyr who use their legs for mobility, have demonstrated a facility for quick movement and effective hiding. The grantris resemble centipedes and millipedes, except that they do not possess the hard carapace. Instead, they are soft-bodied and are covered by tiny hairs that twitch at the slightest sound or movement. Squat and oblong, the largest reach the length and bulk of a small dog. Their legs, which number in the hundreds or thousands, reverse in order to balance objects upon their backs, making them quite adept at carrying more than the typical two-armed demon.
"We placed a simple paperweight upon its back, to see how it would handle this burden. Its hairs quivered enormously at the introduction of a foreign object, but then the legs nearest to the glass globe turned upwards at the joint, touching tip to the weight. With this simple bracing, the grantris was able to move quite quickly around the room, the paperweight simply rolling from one side to another, but never falling due to the legs' careful grip." (Mharcuis Roahnn)
Grantris prefer cover and will generally seek to be under or behind a solid object in order to prevent discovery. When in open spaces, they move almost continuously, constantly circling their confines to find a suitable place to hide. Their anxiety is heightened in the presence of non-humanoid creatures the grantris perceive as predators, and, although they are generally quite subservient, summoners have lost their bond with the grantris in the face of particularly threatening beings due to stark fear on the part of the demon.
"The demon was always moving and would hide under the nearest bush or bench until we moved on. We encountered Dimerian along the way and he was, as always, accompanied by a grik'mlar in a particularly foul mood. The grantris froze for a mere second before resuming its rapid circuit of the forest floor. I felt a backlash of spiritual essence that left me prone. Dimerian told me after I recovered from the effect that the grantris appeared to re-open the veil itself and disappeared. I had no time to repair the link, the grantris' desire to return was so strong." (Fimelia Lolneria)
Like other insects, the grantris can communicate by rubbing their legs together. They are capable of a wide range of tone and have extreme control over the sound, enabling them to communicate over short distances with other grantris in a highly complex fashion. In addition, the grantris can imitate humanoid speech patterns, particularly those that are elven in root, by mimicking the voice via melodic repetition with their legs.
From the Book of Records
The grantris was first summoned by Mharcuis Roahnn Faendryl in an accident involving an incorrect valence runestone.
The arashan call Shien'Tyr home. There appears to be no hierarchy established between the arashan and the other inhabitants of Shien'Tyr, the aishan and the shien. When summoned, the demons ignore the presence of each other. Unfortunately, this conclusion cannot be verified on their natural valence.
The arashan, while vaguely similar to Elanthian spiders in appearance, has many peculiar differences. Its body consists of an abdomen, thorax and a distinct head, which is typically fused to the thorax on traditional spiders. The head bears no eyes, a likely result of Shien'Tyr's absolute darkness. Long, wiry hair covers its body and legs, which the demon twitches constantly in an attempt to feel its surroundings. The hair can vary in hue, usually being black, brown, grey or a deep blue. It has eight three-segmented legs sprouting from its thorax that each end in three toes splayed 120 degrees apart. A fully uprightarashan can almost rival the height of a halfling, but they rarely extend themselves far off the ground.
The face of the arashan bears only three tentacles circling its mouth. The tentacles are about a hand's length long, black, ridged and wet. They usually hang motionless from the face, but when the creature gets excited they will flare up and thrash wildly about. In foggy environments, the arashan can be seen undulating its tentacles while orally emitting some form of black thread.
"... I took the creature outside in an attempt to gauge its reaction to different environments. It seemed rather lackadaisical amongst the streets of the city and the gardens until the evening mist settled in. Almost immediately its tentacles started to twist and throb as it regurgitated a thin,dark string. The hypnotic motions of the tentacles wove the silk into black webs, which it seemingly attempted to hang from the mist and fog, only to have it fall to the ground. It grew frustrated and spat an enormous glob of the webbing at me. The substance was extremely sticky and it took a moment to remove myself from it before I could discipline the creature appropriately..." (Corientha Estera)
A peculiar habit of the arashan is its tendency to talk to itself. The arashan speak their own cryptic language, but have never been seen to speak to each other, only when alone. It is theorized that the creatures are attempting to contact other arashan over long distances, since sound potentially travels very far on Shien'Tyr, but this theory has not been proven. The voice of the arashan is hauntingly deep and raspy.
Light makes the arashan uncomfortable. It is unknown how exactly the demon is capable of knowing an area is lit when it lacks any eyes. Even when not in warm sunlight, but in a magically lit room, the arashan will sulk and become lazy. Due to its photophobia, the arashan is usually rather upset with being pulled away from its perpetually dark home. It has been known to not take kindly to commands and occasionally even refuse them, if it requires the arashanto do a substantial amount of work.
From the Book of Records
The arashan was first summoned by Allereli Lissina Faendryl.