Profiles in Magic, Volume 7 (book)
Profiles in Magic, Volume Seven
Penelope: As Eternal as the Stars
Heritage Monographs, the official press of the Moon Mage Guild, is proud to present the seventh volume in the ongoing Profiles in Magic series. The information within these volumes has been thoroughly researched by the most intense magical scryings as well as diligent reading of the most ancient tomes, and has been compiled by a dedicated staff of Guild scholars.
This volume details the extraordinary life, and death, of the lich known only as Penelope, or Lady P. Her enormous contributions to the fields of magic and prophecy serve as proof to all that the love of knowledge can stretch beyond the grave.
Chapter One: The Ancient Scholar
In truth, not much is known about the Lady's origins. She never spoke much of it, there are no records, and magical scrying has turned up nothing about her. Penelope lived in a time long ago, though, that much is known, long before the formation of the Seven-Starred Empire. It is also believed that she lived far from our Five Provinces, perhaps on another continent. Regardless, we know that she is ancient beyond measure, and that at some point before our recorded history, she was killed. P existed as an undead lich, though one of the strangest kind: she did not know she was undead. In fact, she was quite insistent that she was alive, and expressed utter shock when one called her dead.
Penelope's life before the old Empire remains, and probably always will remain, cloaked in total mystery. Penelope is known to have lived in the Empire while it existed, though, and our tale begins there. She is known to have been an astrologer of exceptional skill, and concentrated much of her studies on the phenomenon known as the Bloodworm Comet. The red comet occasionally appears in the constellation of the Mongoose, usually as an omen to great upheaval or a threat to the power of the gods (the Mongoose is the emblem of Rutilor, the defender of the gods).
One of the most notable appearances of the comet was during the reign of Emperor Chezarek. The Emperor, recognizing the limitations of his power on the throne and knowing he would be forced to give it up in seven years, the Emperor attempted to summon a powerful creature of darkness. Chezarek expected to use the demon to enhance his power, but instead the beast turned on him. Chezarek was killed by the same power he had attempted to control. The creature escaped and it was only through the efforts of a nearby order of Tezirites that it was again banished.
Shortly after this, the comet vanished from the heavens. Over the course of the centuries, the Bloodworm visited the Elanthian skies several more times, and chaos always followed it.
Penelope took on a mantle of guidance upon the formation of the Moon Mage Guild, often teaching notable figures throughout the Guild's history such as Sanyrsen Astoshe, Mortom Saist, and Taramaine Braun. Lady Penelope also befriended and became quite close with the renowned Demosel Dez'Madielle, and the two often shared stories and knowledge with each other after their chance meeting.
Chapter Two: Penelope's Life with the Moon Mage Guild
Penelope is known to have kept on her person at least two artifacts. One was a gold ring of unknown origin. According to Penelope, the ring was a magical method of teleportation. It is the only such artifact known to exist. Another treasure of this lich was a small music box. This music box is said to have played the sounds of the souls of children. In addition, any living being who came into contact with the music box was driven insane, making it extraordinarily dangerous. Due to her undead status, Penelope was protected from this mysterious effect. Where Penelope acquired this music box is uncertain, but there are records in the deepest archives of Throne City showing that the Guild once held a similar device.
Penelope's other contributions to the Moon Mage Guild are immense. Though she never wrote any texts herself, the teachings she passed on to her students as well as personal interviews conducted by official Guild scribes served as a foundation for countless reference materials which are still in use today for magical research as well as the painstaking translations of pre-Imperial scrolls.
Her most famous work in this regard is the ten year effort that was the translation and restoration of the infamous book known as "Phelim's Aegis." Written by one of the founders of the Celestial Compact, long before Jares Braun ever journeyed to Throne City, the Aegis was passed down amongst the leadership of the Compact throughout the centuries. Phelim's Aegis was the foremost text for knowledge of heavenly enchanting possessed by the Celestial Compact. Shortly after the signing of the Lunar Accord, Phelim's Aegis was believed to have been lost when the faroff Guildhall safekeeping the text was destroyed in an immense fire. Though other precious treasures of the Guild vanished with the ruination of the Aluandi Hall, Phelim's Aegis was by far the most valuable.
When the Aluandi Hall was recently unearthed by a Guild expeditionary team, the long process of a careful excavation began. The rebuilding and restoration of Aluandi was fraught with dangers, and had to be done most delicately, as even the slightest miscalculation could damage the work. During this project, Phelim's Aegis was discovered. The book was barely legible, as it had been badly charred by fire and time. Eager to salvage as much knowledge as they could from the once-lost book, the High Council formed an elite team to begin the process of piecing together the text and translating it. At the behest of Grandmaster Taramaine, Penelope led this project with an untold dedication and wisdom. Though only a few scraps of magical knowledge could be dredged forth from the book's scarred pages, the words of the Aegis enhanced the Guild's abilities of enchantment a hundredfold. The remains of Phelim's Aegis are held now in the Inner Sanctum of Throne City, there surrounded by physical and magical wards to keep all but those with the highest authority from nearing it, as the tiniest carelessness could devastate the fragile pages of the book.
Chapter Three: The Death of a Lich
Penelope again took on the mantle of teacher, as she began visiting with and instructing the students of the Guild, befriending many. It was during this time that she met the Fateweaver Demosel. It certainly appeared as though, with her work with the Guild students, Penelope would groom the next generation of the Moon Mage Guild's leaders.
In the year 351, Penelope was killed by a man named Kellior, seemingly a Paladin leading other holy warriors against a lich. The truth of the matter is that Kellior himself was undead and tricked the Paladins, a fact which was revealed upon Kellior's death at the hands of Demosel, who sought to avenge her friend's murder. Penelope's precious music box artifact was lost in the depths of the Obsidian Pass, and is believed to currently be held by the Mountain Elves, who refuse to turn the powerful device over to the Moon Mage High Council, despite constant requests. After her death, a memorial service was held for Penelope at Ankis Dir, at which Grandmaster Taramaine spoke. Penelope was mourned by Demosel, and even the Guild criminal, Grell. Her legacy lives in the teachings she passed to her students as well as the texts she aiding inwriting.