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Offline [NPC] The Librarian

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Myrmidon
« on: July 22, 2016, 02:18:23 AM »
Myrmidon


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Like many legendary beings, Myrmidons came about as the result of the work of a single man.  At the time, a Human serving the ancient Empire that used to encompass Valgard and AndĂșnĂ«.  A benevolent noble who was a leader of men in martial prowess, his name was lost to time, and is known simply as "The Myrmidon".  It is told that after years of dedicating himself to the ways of the warrior and protecting peace and justice in his lands, he found the truth of all the wars he ever fought in.  Peace and Justice were always illusions.  Nations could paint and dress up their reasons for going to war, but in the end it was always for the benefit of a greedy leader, or for the nation itself.  The Myrmidon saw only one constant in all of this conflict: The People.  It was always the people that suffered, bore the brunt of it all, and ultimately paid the price.  This made The Myrmidon hate himself, and that which he had stood for, to the extent that he severed his ties with his nation and went out on his own.

While it is safe to say The Myrmidon lived in a time of troubles and wars, this did not change what he believed to be the constant that was seen with conflicts big or small between nations and races across Entar.  He set out as a wandering warrior, seeking only to dedicate himself to upholding peace and protecting the people.  Having gone from a bold and prominent leader of men, capable of invoking more change in most, to essentially a vagabond wandering the lands, The Myrmidon was not in an optimal position to uphold his ideals.  That being told, he, unlike many of the noble classes, knew that true worth came from hard work, and he set out with this to work towards his vision.  Accompanied only by his former lieutenant, The Myrmidon travelled all known walks of Entar, seeking only to fulfil his vision of as true warrior and defender of peace.

Stories are told all over the lands of The Myrmidon, from the Illyian Tundra all the way to the fens of the Southlands.  He was known by many names across the lands, most of which are lost into obscure history books of different nations, but some things are still known by some.  He was known to be a master bladesman, the like of which had never been defeated in one on one combat.  His loyal companion and former lieutenant was legendary with the bow, said to be capable of shooting off a sparrows wings in flight.  The two together would stand for the people during their travels where the threat of war and conflict stood to decimate.  On this course, they attracted followers, some skilled and some willing to learn.  Over the years, they built up a brigade of men and women of different races who were skilled in various aspects of battle, but with a heart willing to preserve peace and justice for the people.  The band established themselves in an unknown location and effectively disappeared for a number of years.  During this time they had been training and bettering themselves, for they had received word of a dark time brewing.

When the Battle of the Black Citadel was fought, The Myrmidon unveiled his band of warriors.  While the chaos of battle can cloud ones perception, there is no doubt what was seen.  The warriors were beyond the supernatural, moving with logic defying actions and engaging entire squadrons of the enemy single handedly.  The Myrmidon and his followers had unlocked a new power during the years they had spent withdrawn.  The Myrmidon himself had seen the coming of this battle, and while loathed to get in between the battles of nations, recognised that the outcome of the coming battle would affect all the people of Entar.  During the time of seclusion from the rest of the world, The Myrmidon, and his troops unlocked through sheer will and determination, a new power not seen before.  Some had tapped into the Arcane Might of Entar, others had Spoken with the Gods, but the Myrmidon had done something else, something less magical and more real, yet beyond the grasp of most mortals.  He had unlocked the spirit of a persons will and determination and allowed it to be mailable and within their use.

He had brought to life the Warriors of the Spirit Blade.

Recognised unofficially as prominent hero's at the battle of the Black Citadel, The Myrmidon once again retreated back to the shadows, along with his followers, the now established Spirit Blades.  This came at a grave cost to The Myrmidon.  After the battle of the Black Citadel, The Myrmidon's friend and former Lieutenant had become erratic, and distant.  It was only after time that he revealed his allegiance to those that had been on the opposing field that grave day, and to The Myrmidons great despair that his good friend and comrade had been working with an enemy for the most part of their time together.  The Myrmidon had him put to death, not before learning that he shared The Myrmidon's sharp ideal of the land of Entar, but had decided that the methods employed would never meet success.  The Myrmidon became nigh on reclusive after these events had transpired.  Eventually one day he emerged, holding a set of rules that would forever make up the ranks of the Spirit Blades.

In modern times in Entar, no one really knows what became of The Myrmidon.  Most are unaware, some retain the fact that he died, others vehemently believe he still walks Entar alone.  Relatively secluded and withdrawn the Spirit Blades still exist, and except members into their ranks.  While an exclusive organisation, even they are loathed to admit that in the current age, people realise the spirit power without their guidance.  Thus they have deemed three ranks: Spirit Blades, Grey Blades, and Black Blades.  They control none, but the Spirit Blades fight for the people of Entar no matter what.

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Myrmidon
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2016, 02:21:13 AM »
Becoming a Myrmidon

While the Spirit Blades try to maintain a closed organisation, where they recruit potential Myrmidon into their ranks, and train them up, there is no hard and fast rule about this, with the exception of one.  The Spirit has to be put through several trials before the person can evolve to the Myrmidonic state, and while they may display powers of their own, will never truly control them without facing these trials, whether orchestrated or not.
  • The Spirit Blades: These are the core of the Myrmidon, and will be invited into taking the trials by an existing Myrmidon.  They represent what was left by the original Myrmidon.
  • The Grey Blades: These are people who develop the power on their own, and evolve on their own, usually through random events, that they end up facing the trials through no design of their own.  Either way, they ascend outwith the organisation, but are not inherently against it.  Spirit Blades are usually wary of Grey Blades, and Black Blades will actively try to indoctrinate Grey Blades.
  • The Black Blades: Those who evolved as part of the Spirit Blades and left with betrayal, or as an attempt to usurp the power of the Myrmidon for their own devices.  Factions of Black Blades exist, but are rarely as unified as the Spirit Blades.  They will also attempt to recruit potentials into their rank, but their trials are considered by many to be much more barbaric, primal and ruthless.  They are actively hunted by the Spirit Blades, but themselves will hunt the Spirit Blades in kind.


While it may be a ceremony, or random chance circumstances that awaken the Myrmidon, they all follow that same rule and must be complete in order to truly awaken the power of the spirit.

  • Trial of Skill: While not immediately obvious, the Spirit of the Myrmidon is awoken though precision, skill and finesse with a weapon. That being said, weapons vary far a wide, and it has been known for a Myrmidons weapon of choice to be his own tongue and wit.  Only those who master such a skill will be close to awakening their abilities.  While it is true it is possible to pass this trial with mastery of a tool, it is unlikely that such mastery would then extend to the other trials.
  • Trial of Courage: A Wielder of spirit must face down fear and doubt.  They are not beyond fear, but must master it.
  • Trial of Endurance: A Myrmidon faces much more stress on their Battlefield than most Soldiers or Warriors.  They must endure physically and mentally in the extreme.
  • Trial of Spirit: The Final trial of the Myrmidon, which will forever seal his fate, as to fail this trial is to die.  This trial is also a sort of lesson, and those not being initiated into the Spirit Blades will find it hard to develop independently.  This trial benchmarks the persons ability to call on their spirit and teaches them how to unlock such an ability at will.  This is key to the initiation and evolution into the Myrmidonic state, as it is with this unlocking that a Myrmidon draws all its power and fundamentally evolves into a new state of being.

The Myrmidonic Traits

Once the Trial of Spirit has been endured and completed, the Myrmidon is born.  While physically they still hold the same physical figure and appearance, they have in fact become something else.  Their connection to their own spirit and will has evolved them beyond the shackles of their prior race.  They are now Myrmidon.  With this ultimate transition comes the merits of being able to tap directly into ones spirit and will, but also has a few inherent abilities as well.

It is difficult to quantify the abilities of a Myrmidon, as their use of the Spirit is synonymous with that of Magic (But NOT magic in essence).  As such a Myrmidon tends to develop his or her own unique abilities with the use of the Spirit.  Some greatly enhance their own natural abilities, while others will wield it like a weapon.  The following are a few common examples of what many Myrmidon use.

  • Motion: Likely the most common of all, Myrmidon can use their Spirit to bolster their own physical motion.  They can move far faster than previous racial restrictions may have put in place.  Some can flit from place to place faster than the mortal eye may be able to comprehend. They can leap to impossible heights, and descend from said heights without injury.  This obviously comes at a cost of tapping their Spirit Energy.  It is not possible to sustain for extended periods, as it will slowly but surely drain all the Energy from the Myrmidon, so it is a skill used for things like combat and stealth, not travel.
  • Force: Often discovered by accident, this ability with training, affects those weaker in Spirit and Will around the Myrmidon.  The Myrmidon can exert his Spirit onto an individual or small group, and dependant on his on prowess in using this ability, and the Spirit, Strength and Will of the target, effectively paralyse the victim.  The Spirit weighs down on the person like a heavy burden, slowing and eventually paralysing them in a non-physical way.  It does not damage the person in any way, but can bind them.  It can vary in the effect, some exert their Spirit like a heavy weight, while others exert it like a chilli and maddening scream in the mind of the victim.  Performing this naturally ebbs away at the Spirit Energy.
  • Voice: At first this ability can be more of a distraction and hindrance than that of a benefit, but with control this ability becomes a boon.  With focus the Myrmidon is able to open up his Spirit to others around him, and hear the 'Voice' of their Spirits.  At first he will hear a din of garbled nonsense, which often drives to distraction, but after training the ability, can isolate individual voices.  This can be used to detect the presence of others (Not location).  It cannot be used to read the minds of others, as the Voice that is heard is a mental interpretation of something more abstract.  They can however, get a sense of base urges, instincts and feelings.  It is much harder to interpret the voice of those far stronger willed.  Unlike most Myrmidonic ability, listening to the Voice does not drain the Spirit Energy, it is passive unless exertion is needed to 'crack' a target of stronger will.
  • Anti-Magic: A poorly understood power, that can in essence be the doom of any Myrmidon.  As an observed phenomenon, the power of the Spirit can naturally reject a magical matrix.  It is therefore within the Myrmidons power to erect a barrier around himself and potentially others that will cancel any magical attack.  On top of this, erecting the barrier does not drain the Spirit Energy at all.  While this seems like something too good to be true, there is of course a catch.  When a magical construct is dissipated by the barrier, there is a toll on the Spirit Energy of the Myrmidon.  The exact nature is not well understood, but the best estimate is that the drain is almost a one to one trade off with the amount of 'Mana' or Magical Energy the caster has used.  By this effect, it can completely drain the Myrmidon of all his Energy, and worse, put him to an instant death.  With training a Myrmidon can reduce this cost, but such training itself is potentially fatal.  It is only the Spirit Blades that have the edict that states godlessness, and for reason.  Unless a Myrmidon is godless, they cannot use this ability to cancel Faith-based magic.  This does not mean the Grey or Black Blades cannot, it simply means the Spirit Blades insist on it.
  • Powerful Tongue: Myrmidon can develop powers in persuasion, even manipulation.  It is still documented in historic texts that often times leaders of the realm would send our messengers to seek out a Myrmidon to mediate debates, or councils.  Some would even reach out in greed to have a Myrmidon negotiate in their favor.  They can often either appear subconsciously intimidating or charismatic, and can even develop subtle spirit techniques in which they trick the mind, or warp the perspective of mortals.

While these are common among Myrmidon, they are by far not exhaustive in the example of what can be done with the Spirit Power.  Other examples of developed techniques are those that make a more malleable use of the Spirit, such as physically basting someone with it, or tossing it out as a projectile capable of knocking someone down, or erecting a temporary barrier with the sheer force of their Spirit.  As mentioned, it is synonymous with Magic, but Myrmidon lack magical ability.  Despite this lack, it is rare, but not unknown for a Myrmidon to even attempt to exert his will over elements and attempt to dissipate or in some way control them.  This is more common in those who use the Spirit directly as a weapon, rather than to enhance their abilities.

The following are some inherent traits a Myrmidon gains upon his evolution into their new being.  These are things all Myrmidon will share, despite which 'faction' they belong to.

  • Spirit Energy: The reservoir from which a Myrmidon draws his strength and abilities from.  It is essentially his life blood, as total drainage normally results in death.  Naturally while not in use, the Spirit Energy will recuperate, and the recuperation is at a high when the Myrmidon is resting.  The reservoir is dependent on the person, some have a deluge in comparison to others.  A Myrmidon can develop the size of his Spirit Energy, with patience and rigorous training.  While a Myrmidon will recuperate their spirit energy over time, they can do so faster through meditation, sleep and the consumption of food.
  • Ageless: As part of the transition to a higher state of being, the Myrmidons connection to his Spirit renders him effectively ageless.  This is not to say that he or she is suddenly immortal, as most conventional methods will kill the Myrmidon.  They can still suffer disease, be mortally wounded and so on, but they will not pass on from old age.  They can be abruptly snuffed out if they push themselves beyond the limits of their Spirit Energy.  As a correlation to the agelessness, the Myrmidon no longer needs sleep or nourishment (They still need rest, and many partake in sleep, or eating still).  They still maintain much of the traits of their former race also.  For a example, a Myrmidon who was once Human, can still live life as a regular human, sire children and so on.  Most opt not too, as the pain of outliving all family members far out ways the pleasure it might bring.  Myrmidon also do not need to consume food, or sleep.  While this will seem unnatural to most they can recuperate their spirit faster by doing so, and as such many opt to do so when possible.
  • Markings: When using their powers, tell tale signs can generally be seen on the surface of their bodies.  Often these manifest as bright glowing viens of different colours, not restricted to any particular area of their body.  While most can easily cover these up with clothing, some of the older and more powerful of the Myrmidon have had these markings spread all over their body.  These are only visible when the Myrmidon draws on Spirit Energy.  It can manifest in other forms too, some it adds an astral quality to their voice, others it can appear as dancing energy around their body, and others a combination of all three.
  • Null: While draining the Spirit completely normally results in death, it can also result in a Myrmidon becoming Null.  At best this strips them of proper cognitive thought, leaving them a husk capable of acting on only basic instinct alone.  At worst, they are driven completely insane, and become a liability to all.  Members of the Spirit Blades who become Null are euthanised in the most humane way possible.

Restrictions To Becoming a Myrmidon

As with many things regualr and supernatural, there are always some natural restrictions that generally cannot be over come no matter how hard one tries.  Myrmidons are no exception to this rule.  A list of restrictions to becoming a Myrmidon follows.

  • Racial: To this date, there have been no Myrmidon that have not been comprised of one of the Core Major Races of Entar.  To this effect it is believed that the ability to unlock the Spirit Energy of a person is only possessed by Humans, Elves, Dwarves and Orcs.  Even with this said, it is extremely uncommon to see a Dwarven Myrmidon as their physical build while strong and hardy, is not that expected of one that could pass the trials.  It is however not impossible.  It is extremely rare for a Myrmidon to be either Dwarven or Orcish, but not impossible.  The majority of the Spirit Blades are made up of Humans and Elvish, as are the other 'flavors' of Myrmidon.
  • Magic Users: Due to the strange and unexplained nature of Spirit Energy it is almost impossible for a Magic user to become a Myrmidon.  The magical ability of a Magician will diminish as their Spirit Energy grows and surfaces.  Ultimately this creates a dangerous internal conflict as the Mana flow, or Magical Energy will clash with the Spirit Energy.  Upon passing the final trial (whether put through by the Spirit blades or by accident), the user will have either their Magical Energy, or Spiritual Energy snuffed out depending on which way the tide of internal energy ebbs.  The outcome has two possibilities.  If the Magical Energy is quelled, and the Mage survives the opening of Spirit Energy, they will cease to have any magical abilities and have become Myrmidon.  The second is that the Magical Energy cancels out the swell of Spirit Energy, resulting in death or null.  The most common outcome is death, and none of the above would be particularly beneficial to the Mage.

The Additional Information

The Spirit Blades

The most prominent organisation of Myrmidons in all of Entar.  The Spirit Blades were originally formed by The Myrmidon as a group that would defend the lands free of any political manipulation or direction.  They would always attempt to steer the conflicts and choices in the world towards that of peace.  While this can be seen as 'good' and 'just' in the eyes of most, the Spirit Blades will stop at nothing to achieve their goals.  Individuals can, at times, become a public enemy simply by upholding the creed of the organisation.  While an organisation of fiercely honourable warriors, they will break the laws of the land in order to achieve what they set out to.  Some will even sacrifice moral code for a 'greater good'.  As such they are normally between Chaotic Good and True Neutral.  Other smaller groups exist, using the Myrmidonic Powers for their own ends, but the Spirit Blades is one of the three largest.  The Black Blades are both a group and not a group.  A Black Blade is a Spirit Blade who has turned on the creed of the group, or has been recruited by another Black Blade.  They are organised and play hands in political machinations of various nations for their own ends.  A Spirit Blade will also brand others as Black Blades if they independently use their power for their own gain, but are not part of an actual organisation of Black Blades.  The Grey Blades are Myrmidon who have either come to the state by accidentally unlocking the power of the Spirit, or who have parted with the Spirit Blades amicably.  Both are rare cases, but the latter being the rarest.  A Spirit Blade is normally for life.

All that said, The Spirit Blades are a large, if relatively reclusive organisation, and have certain rules.  They have no known headquarters outside of the organisation, and tend to operate in small groups of three or four, unless major action is required.  Their headquarters are in actual fact hidden among the western mountains of Khalar, but this is known only to those in the organisation, and the exact location changes regularly to preserve this.  Myrmidon usually are active in the lands at all times in small groups, however there are some 'sleepers' who retain their old way of life (If in reality, so long as it conforms to the ideals of the group, and sometimes even outside of these ideals as a cover or mole), only to be called upon when required.  To this end, a Myrmidon could be sitting on the throne of Miriel, waiting for a purpose unknown to any but the Spirit Blades.

The rules of the Spirit Blades are as follows:
  • 1. Servitude: The ideals of the Spirit Blades are always upheld, no matter what.
  • 2. Loyalty: The Myrmidon will remain loyal to the Blades as long as they remain.  Whether King or Beggar, they will come when called.
  • 3. Godless: The Myrmidon will not be pulled by any deities presence.

These core rules form the backbone of the Spirit Blades.  Number three does not disallow the Myrmidon to believe or worship a god, but they are forbidden from allowing their faith to affect any decisions.  On top of this, in order to be initiated into the group, and become a member benefiting from their training and knowledge, one must posses a mastery over their martial abilities.  There is no doubt that Myrmidon are warriors and weapons a like.  They need to be a 'one man army' capable of taking on multiple opponents of varying skill should the need arise.  Whether it be unarmed, sword, axe, ranged and so on, the Myrmidon must be considered amongst the highest class in that weapon.

On top of this a Spirit Blade will be taught and be expect to be a keen diplomat and negotiator.  This is key for their ability to steer the lands towards peace and a general protectorate of the people.

Public knowledge of the Spirit Blades and Myrmidon in general is not unknown.  The Spirit Blades however cannot be 'called on'.  They move independent of others machinations.  They accept requests if one knows where to ask, but they will use these as information rather than a request, and judge any situation based on the ideals of the group.  Other groups may not operate like this.

The Grey Blades

There is no organization of Grey Blades.  They are more of a grouping.  While in the past it has been known for them to work with Spirit Blades and Black Blades alike, the term is used for the individual, or group of individuals with like qualities.

The Black Blades

While there is no one organization seen as of yet, the Black Blades tend to operate in smaller factions, tuned to their own ideals.  They can be very like the Spirit Blades, even have their own rules and edicts.  Generally due to the lack of cohesion they are smaller groups than the Spirit Blades, but the factions number in the many.  They will undermine Spirit Blades unless it suites their purpose.  They are usually a hand manipulating from the darkness.

A Caveat to the Warrior

The Myrmidon were traditionally a group of warriors.  They excelled in the martial prowess, and used their spirit powers to enhance their abilities and weapon of choice.  These days, the Myrmidon are much more evolved, as such a weapon need not be the crux of their ability.  Some are powerful diplomats or negotiators, choosing the table of treaties as their field of battle.  Others exert their spirit over their environment to solve issues in the world, rather than directly engaging with enemies.  Truly the Myrmidon are open to all talents, regardless of faction.

Credits

  • Original Concept and Write-up: Davin Ragal
  • Revised Edition: Davin Ragal & Zyrphath
« Last Edit: January 28, 2017, 03:14:52 AM by Davin Ragal »