The Aelrrigan Order is a Knightly Order primarily occupied with fighting the negative effects of Magic on the world, though by harnessing and teaching as opposed to repressing. Among the Aelrrigan Knights, Magic usage is very common, and they even provide safe ways to teach responsible Magic usage to others. Inversely however, the Aelrrigan Order has some of the most ruthless Mage-Hunters who track down what they call Renegade Mages (sometimes also called “Goz” for the Breizh word for mole, or just Renegade). Beyond their enforcement of responsible and moral usage of Magic, the Aelrrigan also hunt down Artifacts of Magic in order to keep them out of the hands of the common people, and lock them up into a fortification called an Enemohér, which those who speak Common often refer to as a Magi-Vault or Mohér. The Aelrrigan ply their craft somewhere between the laws of the land and their own moral codes, never quite being fully recognized and legalized in the same way the other Knight Orders had been, but still finding ways to fulfill their divine mission. The Aelrrigan follow the Marvdeiz Diougan, which is loosely translated to the Doomsday Prophecy in Common, foretelling of a time when unrestrained Magic will destroy the world and end all that is good on it. This prophecy has been foretold across faiths, both from when the Breizh pre-Unionist, and still preached to them after integration, meaning it still guides their intentions towards all that is Magic.
The Aelrrigan Order is a Knightly Order that specializes in positive enforcement of good Magical conduct on the people of the Empire. Aelriggan Chapter houses are some of the few rare locations in the Regalian Empire where one can learn Magic and be taught Magic by practicing teachers without requiring extensive paperwork and documents to prove legality. The Aelrrigans teach their students ethical magic usage, not to treat magic like a toy, to be respectful, and to only use it when necessary and not overly self indulgent, and to guard the mind and soul from Demonic corruption. The Knights of the Aelrrigan Order also hunt Renegade Mages who use Magic to harm and corrupt, perform kangaroo courts, and punish those who court evil with Magic. Their final task is also to secure wayward Artifacts and keep dangerous Magical objects out of the hands of the common folk who do not understand such terrible power.
The Public View of the Aelrrigan Order in the Regalian Empire is very mixed. On the far progressive side of the spectrum, the Magic-leaning believe that the Aelrrigan Order is too restrictive, and teaches an outdated moral code that stifles Magic experimentation and development because of their over-insistence on safety. On the purist side of the spectrum, the purists are resentful of the Aelrrigan Order for making Magic so accessible to the common people, who could proverbially just walk into a Chapter house and learn the basics of healing Magic on a whim. As such, the Aelrrigans make enemies on both sides of the spectrum, and usually sit in a more centrist position where they have to do the thankless job of acting like a Magical police force that neither left nor right seems to appreciate, but relies on nonetheless, as pro-Magic users rarely hold their own accountable, and the purists often lack the brute force to disable rampant Magic use.
Common Knights Code
The Common Knights Code applies to all Regalian Knight Organizations, but is also mentioned specifically on each Order page for reference. This Common Code is additional to the Aelrrigan Knight Functions.
- Knights are expected to be loyal to the Emperor and the Empire without complaint. Unionism is not required, but obedience to the Crown is.
- Knights are expected never to attack the unarmed and defenseless, and to not resort to dirty fighting tricks or attack others from behind.
- Knights are expected not to complain, moan, or self-deprecate, Knights should never degrade themselves or be an annoying bore.
- Knights are expected to follow the laws of the land and not become a Criminal. They should assist Guards in apprehending criminals.
- Knights are expected not to lie, but never express every truth that needn’t be known. Knights should not deceive unless for the greater good.
- Knights are expected to give alms to the poor and care for the needy, and to protect those who cannot protect themselves, and punish dishonor.
Aelrrigan Knight Functions
Order Functions are a set of roleplay goals and activities that one can engage in while being an Aelrrigan Knight. These are functions more-so than rules, but some rules are implied in the functions. For example, while Aelrrigan Knights are expected to hunt Renegade Mages, an Aelrrigan Knight is obviously violating Order conduct if they fraternize and socialize with a Renegade Mage, or simply let one of their friends own an Artifact without chasing them and capturing it.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to morally or vocally combat repression or mal-treatment of the Occult for the sake of being Occult. This does not mean that Aelrrigans attack anyone who attacks a Mage, merely that they will argue for a reduction in repressive policies. If however a person is being abused just because they happen to be an Occult and are harmless, Aelrrigans are expected to step in.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to assist in the cleansing of Afflicted individuals where possible, and to lecture those that use Magical Mutation and Corruption for aesthetic purposes that there is real danger in simply corrupting the body with Magic unchecked. Aelrrigans are expected to keep up to date on the Magical happenings around the world and express the dangers of them to those investigating them.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to constantly evaluate the population of so-called Renegade Mages. If they in Meet to (a conference to vote) decide that a Mage is considered Renegade (using Magic for evil) that they must issue a warrant and capture and imprison them. If a Renegade Mage is caught, a and the kangaroo court finds them guilty, Elen is called upon to sever the Mage's connection and thus break their Magical Powers.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to hunt down Demons or any other form of corrupted or lost soul or body inhabited by a Void or Exist born entity and purge any and all that are found. They must also cleanse areas infected with Void or Exist Essence and prevent civilian interaction. Aelrrigans however don't have sole right to cordon off an area, and are expected to work with the Metropolitan to secure a crime scene or dangerous area.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to hunt down Artifact users, capture their Artifacts, and retrieve them for safe storage into a Mohér or Magi-Vault. When an Artifact is vaulted, the previous owner is refunded part of the Arcanum Tokens, which the Knight who captured it receives as well. This relation is usually 1/3 of the Arcanum cost of the Artifact, but may be different pending Lore Staff considerations of "the value of the rp". Aelrrigan knights are also expected to defend the Magi-Vault when individuals attempt to raid it for Arcanum or Artifacts. See the full mechanical rules for this here.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to make themselves available to teach Magic to anyone willing to learn, but to also impress the Aelrrigan moral fabric onto them, to use Magic for healing, defense and aid, and never for greed, pleasure, or unwarranted violence on others. They should also punish and persecute any of their own students who misuse Magic, and chase after other Magic teachers to ensure they also teach the right moral code.
- Aelrrigan Knights are expected to generally preach about the Doomsday prophecy, to warn against the ills of Magic, and to investigate Magical events that as of yet lack a clear explanation and might have some greater calamity waiting. They may work with out of Order Mages for this. Avoiding being a broken record, but rather talking some sense into people who get blind sighted by their own amazement at Magic, forgetting the dangers.
The Aelrrigan Order has a hierarchical structure that defines the ranks within their Order.
- The Grandmaster is the ceremonial leader at the top. This rank is reserved for Event NPC’s.
- The Mage-Knight Elders lead the actual Order as a Council. They are Event NPC.
- Mage-Knights are extremely powerful Progression entities and Event NPC’s.
- Wydd-Knights are the higher ranked Aelrrigans with special privileges in Regalia which requires review.
- Ward-Knights are the file and rank of the Aelrrigan Order. This rank can be obtained without review.
Aelrrigan Knights have specific legal privileges that remain active so long as they are not disgraced. An Aelrrigan may become disgraced by part of backstory writing, or in roleplay because they break the Knight’s Code and are found guilty of treason within the Order. There is no further civil prosecution of a Knight for being expelled, but they do lose all privileges. Some privileges require higher ranks. In order to be approved for higher ranks, consult a Discord Ticket for accessibility.
- Ward-Knights and up have automatic rights to wear armor up to plate quality in the city. If they are outside of a combat scenario however, they may not wear a helmet or cover their face.
- Ward-Knights and up have automatic rights to bear arms of any kind in the city, and even open-carry such weapons. They must however stand down if commanded by Metropolitans.
- Ward-Knights and up have automatic rights to use Occult powers in pursuit of their tasks and other Knightly activities, including duels in Arena Court and Teaching displays.
- Only Wydd-Knights have automatic rights to enter the Imperial Palace (unarmed and unarmored) without an Occult Permit. Ward-Knights must request a permit.
- Only Wydd-Knights have automatic rights to receive a Knightly Manor in the Noble District. This Estate is not as large as a Noble Estate, but provided for free in Uptown.
It is impossible to understand the origins and foundation of the Aelrrigan Order without reading the Marvdeiz Diougan. The prophecy itself was made by an old Breizh priest called Corentin Dathonair of the Weard faith at the heart of Kintyr somewhere around 500 BC. The timing of this event is hard to track, because the Breizh lacked a written alphabet at the time and recorded most events onto long tapestries without year counting on them, or very vague year counting. This prophecy has been re-told by priests following the death of Corentin all the way up to Unionist integration, after which numerous Celates all corroborated the prophecy by claiming they received the very same vision while visiting old burial sites and temples to bless them. The prophecy itself is quite long, but the telling of the doomsday itself is translated to Common below:
In a time when the Greatest of Eagles is struck from the skies and their eyes watch no more. In a time when the lowest of mortals consort with Demons most foul and putrid. When men covered in red with eyes of gold walk among brothers and sisters as siblings. When that which was once laid to rest, brought back with will to kill and deprive. Weard and guards will clash with their own flesh, and the south consumed by fire. Demons walk the land, and bring a thirst for blood to bear on mothers to children. The sickness shall become everyday, and the everyday shall become a sickness to all. When a great scaled beast carries the crown soaked in blood, will death come. End times come when Gods of others are slain in their cairn, and Magic kills the Golden Eye. The End of all is foretold, and no child shall see the last sunrise of life.
The continuous reinforcement of this prophecy by successive priests resulted in the first creation of the Aelrrigan Order in around 100 BC, though obviously not as a Regalian charter, which would come much later as the Regalian Empire did not exist at that time, still being a kingdom. Early on the Aelrrigan Order mostly kept itself busy with hunting down Magic users entirely, believing that extermination was preferable than the inevitable doomsday that was coming their way, but their scope was limited by their inexperience, and their limited geographical presence. While Kintyr was for a time low on Magic, they simply could not enter other nations across the Archipelago without formal support from a larger entity. Last but not least, the Aelrrigan were completely outnumbered and out-classed by the Mages, each one of which could easily take on a whole dozen of Aelrrigan Knights and defeat them still.
The Order gained some Regalian recognition when the lands it was founded on were absorbed into the Empire. Early on, the Empire had a very loose attitude to Magic, and the recent collapse of the Void Invasion caused Magic to all but drain from the world. Very few Mages were left, and making new ones was not possible for several decades following the collapse of the Allorn Empire. Around 50 AC however, the Aelrrigan Order started receiving its first Mage-Recruits, a policy that it had started pursuing shortly before the Cataclysm to bolster their ranks with Mage-Knights, ostensibly to fight fire with fire. As time passed, the Order received more and more recruits, and was becoming a notable Magic fighting force in its own right, still chasing after Renegade Mages, but more importantly: now also providing safe lessons for Magicians and Sorcerers to learn the craft of Magic to keep them out of the clutches of dangerous practitioners and experimentation. This in particular got on the nerves of the Regalian State, which were increasingly becoming hateful and repressive towards Magic as it ran counter to the religious narrative of Unionism.
The dark times for the Aelrrigan Order came in 100 AC, when Arch-Chancellor Maenarra peaked anti-Magic Regalian sentiment with the creation of the Azure Order, allowing Grand Vigil Nicholas to implement his anti-Magic reforms. A true purge followed where many non-Magi signed up to the Azure Order and spread out across the Empire to hunt down Magic users, including Aelrrigan Mage-Knights. Many of the Aelrrigan Order Sanctuaries and Chapter houses were burned, with the Knights slain or imprisoned in the Azure Spire in the City of Regalia. Few of the Order survived without being captured, and most of the Bayor tapestries recording the history of the order were lost, or hidden away and soon forgotten as their protectors were slain elsewhere and taking their location with them to the grave. In 140 AC, the Azure Order declared the Aelrrigan Order destroyed, with the burning of Grandmaster Robwyn of Coltyr, being the last captured Aelrrigan who hid away in the mountains of Alstyr in Kintyr.
The Aelrrigan Knights however survived, mostly because of the relatives of the dead Knights that were spared the burning pyre, some of whom had hidden the Bayor tapestries of their fallen loved ones. More notably however, was the impact of Unionist preachers and missionaries. More and more started showing up, reporting to their Arch-Celates that they too had received the same visions as the Weard Priests. And what was more concerning was the fact that the frequency increased in strength regardless of how effective the Azure Order was at rounding up Magic users. Many started speculating that the killing itself caused or created the evil that would eventually lead to the apocalypse, and so started preaching in Kintyr to return the Aelrrigan Order. It was also in these moments that the Breizh faith started being integrated into Unionism, though it would take some time for the Concilly Council to recognize Elen as a Goddess of Unionism.
The Regalian Empire did not however take up what the Celates were claiming, and continued to repress Mages, and as such, the Kintyr Nobility used their considerable local autonomy away from the prying eyes of the Empire’s legislators to re-establish the order in secret. All of the major Dukes of Kintyr signed the secret Blood Oath, or the Gwadle, giving one of their children as collateral to become the first new Knights, based on the instructions of the Bayor tapestries hidden years before. This act made all the Dukes complicit in the act, and thus if any one of them was found out, they would all stand together to defy the Empire if it ever came to it, so strong was their conviction in their belief they were doing what was right and averting total doom to the world. On top of that, Unionist preachers who had received these visions started aiding their cause from within, always throwing the Azure Order on the wrong trail, or distracting them from the true chapter houses of the resurging Aelrrigan Order that was now operating in complete secrecy.
Many of the Chapter houses and Sanctuaries of the Aelrrigan Order were converted to facade-Unionist Temples and Shrines, and soon started operating again as they always had, by capturing Artifacts and even Mages, and chaining them up, especially those that could not be controlled, while they also acted as safe locations for the Mage-Knights to instruct Sorcerers in the safe and responsible usage of Magic. The Azure Order progressively started gaining ground to secular forces after 300 AC, with most of the Regalian Government believing the threat of Magic had waned, and they had a tight control on any future usage of Magic. This concept once again blew up in their faces when successive Magic-infused crises occured in and around Regalia, prompting the government for a more functional response than just extermination, which was clearly only emboldening magical terrorism. The final reveal of the Aelriggan order came in 270 AC when Elen saved the entire Imperial Family from a magical calamity and terrorist attack, which resulted in Emperor Justinian II removing the bans placed on the Aelriggans, and for Elen to be integrated into Unionism, thus fully absorbing the Breizh faith.
- Elen, the Lady of Rivers, Goddess of Unionism is not an Aelrrigan Knight, but has frequently been sighted in cooperation with them when chasing after a particularly nasty Renegade Mage who has run rampant.
- Elen, the Lady of Rivers, is also responsible for disabling a Renegade Mage’s Magical connections when and if they are captured. She is summoned to a trial of a Renegade Mage to cleanse their Magic if they are found guilty.
- While the Aelrrigan Order has a Grandmaster, the Grandmaster is merely ceremonial. The actual power is rested in the mysterious and terrifyingly powerful Mage-Knight Elders.