Organizations of the Learned

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Reading an Organization Entry

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The organization has offices in multiple nations or areas. "Global" here is a relative term, and does not imply centralized control.
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The organization is localized. See entry for details. Many Alexandrian-based groups have this feature!
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Only for NPCs.

Organizations of the Learned

Org localized.png Alexandria's Bardic CollegeOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: Bards, Sorcerers, Rogues Locations: Alexandria (A04)
Located in the artistic heart of the City, Alexandria's Bardic College is world-reknowned.
Alexandria's Bardic College is centered in the Theatre District, among its sundry and noted theatres and performance halls. It is noted for the "Midnight Run" tradition, where seniors run through campus, painting murals and new colors on the buildings every year. Other acts of artistic merit, such as a midnight concert, have gained traction in recent years. The result has given the college a hodgepodge look that it takes pride in.
RPP-Related Skills: Forthcoming...

Org global.png Org npc.png CollectorsOrg blank.png N/A
Common: Wizards, sorcerers, rogues, Taarans Locations: Learned halls and mages' societies
An arcane group focused on the acquisition of powerful artifacts, posing as academic eccentrics. Opposed to the Acquisitioners.
The Collectors specialize in the theft of powerful objects, with many lusting after both academic and arcane fame. Their means are often subtle, though they're unafraid to harness whatever means necessary. They are the opponents of the Acquisitioners and various Elunan groups across the globe.

To the public, the Collectors appear generally as a sort of club for academics and eccentric collectors. The innocuousness of their name lends to this perception. Their true name for themselves is something in Infernal, and rarely spoken--it's said that saying it aloud invokes the chill of an old and wretched artifact. The first one Draken (their founder) stole, in fact.


RPP-Related Skills: N/A

Org localized.png Alexandria's Articer's GuildOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: Artificers, Clerics, Bards Locations: Alexandria (A14)
A center for artifice and engineering within Alexandria.
Alexandria's branch of the Engineer's Enclave, the Exploratory Associates is a house of invention, artifice, and the occasional kaboom within Alexandria City. It sits across from the Progressive Arcanist's, within Sage Orum's Plaza. The building is noted for its unusual architecture as resembling a giant, mechanical spider, as well as the Reosian dioramas within. The dioramas showcase notable works of artifice throughout history.
RPP-Related Skills: Forthcoming...

Org global.png Hands of IthildinOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: Altheans, paladins, monks, inquisitors, rangers, clerics Locations: Alexandria (A10)
An order dedicated to the spread of nonmagic healing means to uplift poor communities.
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The Merciful Althean Order of the Hands of Ithildin, or simply The Hands of Ithildin, is a female-only monastic cult of the Temple of Althea. Their primary duty is to venerate Althea through community service, most particularly through the provision of mundane and thereby affordable healing, care and midwifery skills. In particular, through the teaching of these skills to others in poor areas, as a means to uplift that community and its members.


There are several theories as to the origin of the Order. Some have aspects of the divine, believing that the first Arma Superius Cassiel Memmius, in life a poor but kindly woman who had died during childbirth, returned to earth from the Elysian city of Ithildin to spread the message of community, healing and the uplifting of the poor. Others have a more mundane explanation, believing it more likely that Cassiel Memmius was the wife of a noble man who became the first patron of the Hands of Ithildin. Ultimately, it is likely that there is some truth to either foundation story.


The Hands of Ithildin are distinct from the general healers of the Temple of Althea in their approach, teaching the importance of mundane healing over miraculous means. Whilst divine favour is not eschewed entirely, often magical means are not available or affordable in impoverished or remote communities; as such, the Hands of Ithildin use mundane medicine, emphasising careful long-term care and herbalism over spells and potions.

This message is also expressed through education. In poor communities, the Hands will often invest much time and effort in training local women in healing, herbalism and midwifery, proving these women with important skills as well as a profession. These folk healers become known as gentis medica (pl. gentium medicae) and are often widely revered within their communities.

Doctrine & Teachings

Doctrine closely matches that of the main body of Althean teaching, but with some differences, which can be summarised through the three main tenets of the faith of the Hands of Ithildin, which are repeated several times daily during individual and group prayer.

  1. What is unnatural, is divine - This is the foundation statement of the faith of the Hands of Ithildin, which states that anything which is not supernatural (not only the gods, but denizens of other planar beings too) must be part of the natural world; this links humanoids to other creatures, emphasising their humility. Conversely, it also states that anything which is not natural must be divine. It is this tenet which calls the nuns into deep reverence not only of Althea, but of all the gods as well as the natural world.
  2. What is natural, is fallible - This simple statement highlights the vulnerability of all living things. The Hands of Ithildin use this as the basis of their tenets - even the strongest things can be injured, or otherwise fail, and so to restore order, they must be healed howsoever they can. It also indicates that even what seems natural can result in failure, and so care must be taken of all living things in all stages of life. It is this tenet which brings the nuns into working as healers, carers and midwives.
  3. As the natural, so the unnatural - This says several things, and is more or less the key tenet of the faith, tying together the first two tenets in saying that the gods can and may die, or otherwise fail. Should this happen, a divine healer's link to her god will be extinguished, and one may have no choice but to rely upon the mundane healing arts. Should the gods of healing fall, then it is likely that healing arts will be in greater demand than ever before required. As such, then, knowledge of herbalism and medicine must be preserved and spread throughout the populous, such that should they be required, the Hands of Ithildin and gentium medicae will be able to administer to the sick, injured and otherwise needy.

The Hands of Ithildin are based upon reasonably loose edicts that cover many aspects of a nun's life, a flexibility reflecting the variability of day-to-day activities of healers, midwives and community teachers. There are some edicts, however, which are based upon the monastic vows of other traditions, which are required to be followed. Some of these are mandatory, and some are optional; all have been developed as part of a lengthy tradition and are carefully controlled. The vows are as follows:

  • Caelibati: the vow of celibacy asks that the Hands and Althea be the first in a nun's life. This extends to ties to a nun's birth family. Upon joining the Hand, the nun rescinds her birth name and takes one given to her by the cult. The nun's principle relationships, then, are her divine bond to Althea, her familial ties to her fellow nuns and superiors, and her universal links to the community. Some cells interpret this to honor the steadfastness between Althea and Daeus.
  • Munditiae: the vow of cleanliness applies not only to a nun's personal hygiene, but also to the purity of her thoughts and deeds. It does not extend to not touching the sick, tainted or deceased, as these clearly form some of the tasks required of a healer; however, it does require several cleansing rituals when bodies are prepared for burial. This vow arose when they noticed that cleanliness reduced the recurrence of diseases.
  • Ieiunii: the vow of fasting does not apply continuously to a nun. If she wishes, she may undertake a period of fasting, but she is required to abstain from all activities in the community at this time to avoid errors and mistakes. At this time she should remain in isolation, focusing on her relationship to the divine, or working in intense study of the mundane healing arts.
  • Pacis: the vow of peace prevents a nun from acting in anger or engaging in violence, except to defend oneself, or those around her. This vow also focuses on inner peace, and on the importance of rest, repose and quiet meditation, which forms an important part of the nun's day-to-day activities. Staff note: While nonviolence is a good goal, a complete pacifist is difficult at best on a DnD game. So, acting in defense is a good interpretation of this vow. A Hand may act in defense of another, or themselves. This includes slaying, though of course they would generally prefer not to when there is a chance of redemption.
  • Penuriae: the vow of poverty is not always followed by the Hands of Ithildin, and is again an optional part of the nun's vows. This is most frequently undertaken when the nun is embedded in a poor community to provide training to the gentium medicae. In general, nuns are encouraged to avoid the collection of material possessions, and all possessions are technically considered the property of the corpus, and are handed down when elderly nuns pass away. Personal items are also discouraged, especially those which link the nun to her old life.
  • Silentii: the vow of silence is also optional, although this is a part of the hermetic sabbatical year which nuns must undertake as the final year of their training. A nun may undertake other, usually shorter, periods of isolation during their lifetime, but this is not mandatory.
  • Veritatis: the vow of truth is mandatory. Every nun must speak the truth, particularly when it comes to care, healing and training.

If a Hand of Ithildin breaks one of the mandatory vows (Caelibati, Munditiae, Pacis and Veritatis), they risk serious chastisement from her superiors and colleagues, and may be cast out of the order entirely. With the exception of a nun following the vow of Silentii during her sabbatical, the breaking of the elective vows is not viewed with such seriousness.

When the Hands of Ithildin train new lay members in the mundane healing arts (the gentium medicae), they also instruct them in some of the Ithildinis doctrine, but certainly not all. Additionally, a gentis medica is not required to follow any vows.

Organization & Nomenclature

When a woman joins the Hands of Ithildin, she becomes a manus minor (pl. manūs minōrēs), a 'minor hand', who undertakes training beneath more experienced nuns. Usually a manus minor is brought to the Order at her coming of age; training typically takes approximately 7 years. The penultimate year is spent in the community, providing care alongside other healers, and the final year is a hermetic sabbatical. Manūs minōrēs wear simple blue robes, without adornment or holy symbols, to distinguish them from other members of the Order

After the final year of a training, a nun is brought fully into the Order in a ceremony when her robes are exchanged for ones with silver piping at the hems, and with a deep blue image of the Evening Star Telmentar at the collar. At this point the nun is known as a manus (pl. manūs), or 'hand', and is able to work fully and independently in the community. A manus is instructed not only to provide healing, but also to teach others in the mundane arts of healing, particularly the poor and needy, as per the edicts of the Order.

Most cities or nations have a branch of the Hands of Ithildin, which are known as a corpus (pl. corpora), or 'body'. Each corpus may have a few dozen manūs and several manūs minōrēs, all under the direction of a single senior nun known as an arma īnferius (pl. arma īnferiōra), or 'lower arm'. Although in a position of power, the cult is somewhat egalitarian, and each manus has an almost equal say in the day-to-day activities of the corpus. An arma īnferius is usually chosen from nuns with a great deal of experience within the community, but the role can be turned down or relinquished at any time.

A council of arma īnferiōra, the corpus mājus, meets occasionally to discuss the general activities of the cult, and to elect an overall leader, somewhat of a spokesperson with the main Temple of Althea. This leader is again only slightly superior to the wishes of the general corpus mājus.

The order slowly seeks to expand itself. A recent foray was made into Am'shere. Though not rejected, the order was not officially permitted, either. Instead, it is locked in discussions with local elders and ultimately, the Empress. Of particular discussion are the vows, which must, they believe, be adapted to the requirements of that people, and their natures. Likewise, how the order changes to fit the tribal and caste system is in thoughtful discussion. Last but not least, any order must be under the guidance of the Empress, and appropriate castes. Yet, they have not said "no."

Daily Activities

The day-to-day activities of a Hand of Ithildin are much less rigid than in other monastic orders, reflecting the flexibility required in the work of a healer, nurse or midwife. However, the general pattern of life for a manus is expected to be similar to the following.

A manus will rise early in the morning in an individual or shared room in the corpus house, typically several hours before a winter's dawn. Early morning activities include ablutions and private prayer, before a simple communal meal is taken at dawn. Following this, there is a period communal prayer and discussion of the day's activity with other manus. Lecturing of manus minores and gentium medicae usually takes place in the morning, usually finishing slightly before lunchtime, which may or may not be taken communally. Many manus treat this as freetime, to follow personal interests.

The afternoon is much more flexible; most manus will undertake community work or training until the early evening, when they will gather for communal prayer and further discussions. Following a large evening meal, the nuns are free to again follow personal interests, although typically remaining within the corpus house. Evensong occurs much later in the evening, with all nuns singing in unison in praise of Althea. Before bed there are evening ablutions and finally, personal prayer.

RPP-Related Skills: Heal, Diplomacy, Profession/Herbalist, Profession/Teacher, Knowledge/Local, Perform/Sing, Knowledge/Religion

Org localized.png Alexandria's Society for Progressive ArcanistsOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: Wizards, sorcerers, bards, witches Locations: Alexandria (A14)
Alexandria's Mage's Guild, cut off from Rune. Wizards, Witches, and Sorcerers are generally considered de-facto members of this guild, though clerics of Eluna also pay it patronage.
Alexandria's now independent branch of the once-global mages' guild. Run by Madame Gelfure, it's said her brilliance is only exceeded by her eccentricities. Under her leadership, the mages have cornered more social markets as well as traditional ones. The most notable are their expansion into new markets: the fickle and changing fashions of nobility and the well-to-do, as well as lending arcane styling to architecture, an area long thought to be within artifice's gridlock. These efforts have greatly stabilized the Arcanists' funding and allowed the expansion of libraries. They embrace all forms of magic, except the darker forms of necromancy.

The guild maintains some ties to Rune, although the fall of that nation means there is no worldwide mages' guild, and their authority is greatly diminished. Mages the world over are in turmoil, after the fall of Rune and actions of Taara. Gelfure's swift taking of the local guild has allowed Alexandria some stability.

Eluna's faith, always strong within the Academy, has along with Navos made a resurgence, although some Taaran mages may be found.

Their building sits across from the Exploratory Associates (the artificers) at Sage Orum's Plaza.

RPP-Related Skills: Knowledge/Arcana, Knowledge/The Planes, Spellcraft, Profession/Scribe, Craft/Calligraphy, Craft/Bookbinding, Linguistics

Org localized.png Shining ChaliceOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: Sorcerers, rogues Locations: Greater Alexandros (H05), Society halls, observatories
Eccentric, minor nobles who peruse the magic in their blood through their salons and seances.
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The Shining Chalice grew originally from a band of eccentric, though minor nobility who believe that the true path to understanding magic is to make it part of one's blood. To this end, they value sorcerous bloodlines and innate magics, as well as those granted by Aspects, as both desirable and important to the practice of magic. While tolerated, they do not hold positions within many wizarding halls. Instead, they achieve their funds through the hosting of salons, and proported fortune-reading abilities, and seances.


Begun as an informal salon among friends during social seances, the Chalice began to delve into the mysteries of mana first as a curiosity, then as a means to host better seances and fortune-sessions. What was initially taken as a social endeavor quickly grew more serious when some of its members began to manifest Aspects. The Chalice has became known over time for its fortune-reading abilities, and its dedication to understanding the night heavens. Accordingly, it grew in size and began attracting like-minded individuals. It became a full organization, though one of narrow focus.

Considered eccentric even for Elunans, the Chalice's membership focuses on better understanding the Ways of the Stars and Moon, and what they have to say to the world, below. Many members believe they are gifted in this understanding because of their blood. In this way, they mix their scholarship with a wont to understand themselves.

Leadership and Areas of Influence

The Chalice is led by Julica, a distant cousin of Gelfure. Though the two are rumored to have grown up together, they were often at odds due to their personality and interests. Julica is more bookish, and while she admired her cousin's keen mind, she felt it wasted by extraneous pursuits. Nevertheless, she seems to possess some of her cousin's social capabilities, which has lead the Chalice in just stead.

The Chalice has loose ties to both the Arcanists and the Temple of Eluna. They possess an unusual friendship with a myriad of lower noble houses, and artistic eccentrics and creative minds. They don't always get along with the Arcanists, given the anti-wizard views among them, though the two groups are sometimes mutually beneficial to one another.

They gain funding by providing salons to interested merchants and nobility--helping them understand just what their future may hold. They may hold salons or for a fee, add interest to a noble's soiree. In this way, some of the Chalice have a flair for performance and storytelling.

RPP-Related Skills

RPP-Related Skills: Knowledge/Nature, Knowledge/Geography, Knowledge/History, Perform/Oratory, Craft/Bookbinding, Linguistics, Profession/Astrologer

Org localized.png Alexandria's Alexandrian TribuneOrg blank.png Associated Characters
Common: All Locations: Alexandria (A02)
The local paper, comprised of reporters and heroes who'll do anything, brave anything, to get the scoop!
Alexandria's local paper! A mixture of shining journalism and ragtag rumor. Reporters, journalists and rumormongers abound. The Tribune has its offices in Lower Alexandria. You do not need to be a member of this organization to publish in it--player and character submissions are all accepted.
RPP-Related Skills: Forthcoming...