Study of The Progeny of Tezirah (book)
A Study of The Progeny of Tezirah
In this volume of comprehensive studies on the sub- divisions with the Guild of Moon Mages, we discuss the Progeny of Tezirah. These spellcasters, known for their impressive skills with shadow magic and political debate, make up one of the most renowned groups of Moon Mages. Accusations, rumors and respect are slung in equal amounts at the members, but despite their seemingly controversial nature, the Progeny have established themselves as one of the keystone sects within the guild.
Established seven hundred and eighteen years before the Victory, the Progeny was created as a small gathering of mages who held academic interest in the arts of sorcery. Initially taking the name "Thee Saesordian Cabal," the group practiced under the guidance of the magess Tezirah Eilsina. Unsubstantiated reports as well as the sect's own private records state that a surprising amount of this knowledge came directly from a translucent obelisk artifact found in the area of the present-day Crossing. Tezirah herself was responsible for the creation of other powerful magic devices, including the completion of the one(s) now collectively known as the Deceiver device. Work had begun on this item five hundred years prior by unknown artificers (on the modern calendar, approximately -1200).
Enchanting was a premier discussion among the Saesordians, and at the time was a fledgling craft based on even older lore. Debate was not foreign to the group, and they in fact welcomed it, especially on such topics as politics, shadow magic, sorcery and even, occasionally, necromancy. Many claim the Saesordians of being party to blasphemous rites, but there is little proof of this in any document to substantiate this accusation.
During the reign of Empress Demin I, sorcery was banned, and a witchhunt begun. There are two, slightly contrary beliefs on what happened next. Not coincidently, modern day members of the Progeny have their own version: Tezirah, who had never actually done anything directly against the Empire, was nonetheless included among the targets of this inquisition. On the day that Tezirah completed the Deceiver device, her manor was attacked. Her minions wantonly slaughtered by the Empire's inquisitors, Tezirah activated the untested device in a last ditch attempt to escape or kill her assassins. A breech opened, and a horde of unsavory things from another dimension vaulted out to kill both inquisitor and Saesordian alike. During this conflict, Tezirah was lost through the portal, and later presumed dead by the Empire. After the shadow beasts were destroyed, the survivors of the cabal disbanded under threat of the inquisitors.
Officially, the assault on Tezirah ended with her being hung from the very obelisk from which she had learned so much. Many non-Tezirites, especially Clerics and others with a strong faith in spirit and soul, believe that it was her close proximity to this artifact that sent her soul spiraling into the Plane of Probability. We now know this is false after the horrific resolution of the Mirror Wraith Prophecy, though some debate that the amazingly powerful being who came through that portal was not Tezirah but a remarkable simulacrum. Others speculate that the 'bat-winged skull' -- which incidentally, several factions of Progeny members use as an emblem -- is in fact the semi-physical manifestation of anything attempting to break the barriers of the Plane of Probability into the Plane of Abiding. Thus, such visions would have been as likely to occur before Tezirah's death (or exile, as the case may be) as it would after it. All such musings aside, the end result was that Tezirah's group was attacked and disbanded.
Some years later, a nobleman by the name of Heronyus Kalestraum rediscovered the writings of the Saesordians and reformed the group. His interest was not in the academic pursuits of sorcerous theory, but the actual and dramatic usage of it to further his own needs. At first this was unapparent, and so those who had joined the revival with an interest in musing on theory and concept rather than diabolic practice soon split the group into two distinctive halves. A young seeress in this group named Alicia Crowther led the more philosophical side's debates, and eventually was fully responsible for splitting entirely from the Saesordians. Shortly thereafter, a conflict with the Celestial Compact led to Kalestraum's death, leaving only fragmented remains of this group to continue practicing their blasphemous rites. To this day, Kalestraum's Children are considered little more than a crazed band of magical terrorists.
The newer group led by Crowther renamed themselves the "Progeny of Tezirah" after the fallen leader who had started the sect originally, and presented itself to be most respectable. They quickly gained a reputation for impressive displays of magic and foresight, and to this day maintain a sound political presence in Ilithi. Despite the rumor mill, it is small wonder that these mages were asked to take part in the First Magical Congress and shortly thereafter became one of the keystones of our Guild.
Still, rumors abound about the activities of the Crowther family and the Progeny. While the veil of secrecy surrounding the true activities and ultimate goals of the sect is impervious to non-members, the Progeny of Tezirah will often champion very public displays of graciousness. Large donations of coin and labor are not uncommon, and the Crowther family in particular is said to be very proud of the gardens surrounding Shard's Great Tower. It is no secret at all that their personal Elven landscapers have nearly a free hand in that city, and among their finest works are the impeccably grown trees and shrubbery.