The Golden Eagle



Send comments and/or criticism to Simon E. Phipp
Created On 1 October 1997
Last Updated On 1 October 1997
Copyright (c) Simon E. Phipp 1997

Contents

History
PC Involvement
Golden Eagle Cult

History

During Nysalorís Golden Empire, many demigods and godlings flocked to his banner and joined his court. One of these was a demigod great-grandson of Vrimak. The Golden Eagle was a demigod of Light, a descendant of Yelm and a mighty warrior. The son of Father Golden Eagle, grandson of Father Eagle, great grandson of Vrimak and great great Grandson of Yelm, the Golden Eagle was a follower of Yelmís way as were his own followers.

As the times changed and the troubles grew deeper, many of Nysalorís Empire took on new and dangerous Powers but the Golden Eagle resisted, preferring the Pure Light of Yelm to be unsullied. More and more of Nysalorís followers took on greater and greater powers until they became twisted parodies of what they had been. Thos repulsed the Golden Eagle who refused to side with them. However, he also refused to side with the Enemy, whose actions repulsed him even more. Racked by indecision, the Golden Eagle stood aside as Arkat entered Dorastor and would not fight on either side.

For this, both Nysalor and Arkat cursed him. Arkat bound him to guard Dorastor from the forces of Chaos forevermore. Nysalor bound him to his ancient Villa near the centre of Dorastor.

After the Cleansing there was no real Chaos in Dorastor, the land was too devastated even to support the forces of Chaos. Over the years, however, ancient sites were opened and old powers awakened. Chaos grew in the land of Dorastor. The Golden Eagle, however, remained bound into his Villa and could not fight the Chaos, no matter how he tried. He managed to call out to the few people who remembered him and formed a cult devoted to fighting Chaos in Dorastor.

This was the cult of the Golden Eagle. They were formed as a mercenary force of which one third was hired out at any time, one third was in training and one third was spent fighting Chaos in Dorastor. All were followers of Yelm the Warrior and most were descended from the Golden Eagle himself. Over the years the Golden Eagles, for that was the name they used for their mercenary company, had mixed fortunes. They fought with the Dara Happan Empire against the Empire of the Wyrms Friends and the Carmanians but refused to participate in the Dragonkill as the Golden Eagle warned them away. They fought against the Red Goddess in the early days and participated in a number of the Dara Happan uprisings. This resulted in their numbers falling throughout the days of the Lunar Empire.

Based near the Hill of Gold in Vanch, the Golden Eagles numbered around 300 when they came to the attention of the PCs in the party. 100 fought Chaos, 100 hired out as mercenaries, mainly caravan guards for the Lokarnos cult, and 100 trained and guarded the barracks in Vanch. They were a dying organisation without clear leadership as the Golden Eagle had long since succumbed to the futility of trying to fight Chaos when bound to a single location and had gone insane.

PC Involvement

I ran a scenario where I gave out an ancient Wheel which had an inscription in Firespeech giving title to the owner. (This was heirloom jewellery which was also a deed, rolled on the standard treasure table.) The bearer was the leader of the Golden Eagles which at that time made a profit of (3D6 - 3D6)*10000 L per year, in other words it could make up to 150000L or lose up to 150000L in any given year. Nobody took it until Rilldick decided to wind up the Yelmalions by taking it and becoming the leader of a Light Cult. Rilldick was a Morocanth Priest of Zorak Zoran and Storm Khan. Andre, the player, thought this was really funny. He actually invested all profits back into the Golden Eagles and thus, over a couple of years, managed to reduce the possibility of making a loss.

Rilldick was approached by the Golden Eagles and asked to help free the Golden Eagle from his madness. The party had to go into his Villa and break the Chains which bound him. Unfortunately, the Villa was guarded by the Forces of Chaos and the Golden Eagle was insane and likely to attack and kill them all. The party did this and freed the Golden Eagle from his madness. The fact that the party consisted of a Zorak Zoran High Priest Death Lord (Derak), a Great Troll Death Lord (Masher), an associate Priest (Rilldick) and assorted Orlanthi and Storm Bulls did not seem to concern the Golden Eagle.

Now the Golden Eagle was free inside his Villa to direct his forces properly. He immediately ordered the third in Dorastor to garrison the Villa and use it as a base. This was very convenient as when the Dorastor Campaign started the party often dropped by for shelter. (The Villa was in the Seven Hills and was very central, an excellent base.)

Rilldick had to retrieve some of the Golden Eagleís personal effects which were scattered around Dorastor. These included his bow, shield and spear and gave the cult access to the spells of Sureshot, Great Parry and True Spear (This was fairly gross, I must admit, but if the cult lost the Artefacts then they lost all access to the spells. This balanced things out, I felt). Of course, Solarus Skywatch was incredibly jealous of Rilldick when he finally joined the campaign and plotted with the Golden Eagle priests to overthrow him and put Solarus in charge, after all they hated the idea of a Death Priest leading them.

After much scheming and Questing, Solarus managed to make Rilldick an offer and took control of the cult. He immediately became High Priest, made his officers and best soldiers join and trebled membership overnight. Solarus hired his own men back as part of Balazarís army and garrisoned the Vanch complex while the rest of the forces went into Dorastor to help the Golden Eagle. This meant that the cult was becoming more powerful and the Golden Eagle was gaining strength. He tried several times to escape his Villa but failed each time. Eventually, Solarus Quested for him and showed him that Dorastor had been his home for more than a millenium, so he was bound to Dorastor. This actually worked and the Golden Eagle was freed within Dorastor. This changed the Balance of Power slightly as a Demigod could now fight the forces of chaos.

Unfortunately, the party had rid Dorastor of the leaders of the Chaos, leaving only the seething hordes to fight, not a great target for a demigod. The Golden Eagle, nevertheless, pledged his forces to Brankist who had become King of Dorastor having killed Ralzakark and taken over Fort Wrath.

A little later, Solarus underwent a form of the Ten Tests to prove that Balazar himself had been a Yelm cultist and that Solarus, a direct descendant of Balazar through the male side, could be said to belong to the cult of Yelm, being King through Balazar. As part of the Tests involved summoning an Eagle, Solarus asked the Golden Eagle for help and was given for Eagle feathers, each of which could summon eagles. Solarus went off and tried to summon the eagle, but each feather failed. In desperation he use all the feathers, used a Divine Intervention to Golden Eagle and Invoked a Summoning Quest. This summoned a Great Eagle which flew towards him on wings of Fire - he had summoned the Golden Eagle himself - only during the Ten Tests could the Golden Eagle be freed, that was Nysalorís stipulation, but nobody knew.

After a while of Tom ranting and raving about being manipulated AGAIN by an evil GM we settled down and continued. Ha Ha.

The Golden Eagle then called a Crusade against Chaos and ordered all his worshippers to Dorastor to fight the Chaos there. This infuriated Solarus who had the elite of his army in the cult. He now had a choice - either leave en masse or waste the army in Dorastor. Both options were unacceptable, so he HeroQuested for a solution. He contacted the Poison Thorn Elves and the Elves of Hellwood and made each of them offers and guarantees. The Hellwood Yelmalion Elves, guardians of the Forest and fighters against Krjalk, accepted Solarusí help and secured an area of Hellwood around the Seven Hills and guarded it for Solarus. This was accepted by the Golden Eagle as a fair price for Solarusí non-intervention in the Crusade. Unfortunately, Solarus had made several bargains which he would have to fulfill at a later stage. Even more unfortunately, the Campaign ended before he could. Shame really.

The Golden Eagle Cult

This is just a sketch of the cult.

Initiates

Have to belong to Yelm, although Solarus expanded this to Fire/Sky/Light cults.

All initiates have to be vetted first to ensue that they are joining for the right reasons. This normally takes the form of an extended trial period in the Mercenaries where people are tested and checked out. If they are accepted then they are Illuminated by the cult hierarchy.

Spells

The cult teaches Ignite, Lightwall and Fireblade.

Skills

Spear attack, Large Shield Parry, Shortsword attack, Self Bow, Firespeech, Hawking.

Eagle Lords

Must qualify as Sun Lords but may not become a Sun Lord. Golden Eagle will accept anyone as an Eagle Lord who has proven themselves to him and qualifies for the status.

Eagle Lords are captains in the mercenary force and hold minor titles in the Dara Happan Empire. They have reusable access to the Golden Eagleís spells and must fight Chaos when and where directed by the Golden Eagle.

Rune Spells

Worship Golden Eagle, Sanctify, Divination, Spell Teaching, Shield, Eagle Eye, Speak to Eagle, Sureshot, Great Parry, True Spear.

Eagle Eye (1 point, stackable, reusable, temporal)

Each point acts as a Farsee 4 and adds 20% to Scan and Search. Changing between long-range scan and close-up vision requires an INTx3% roll or feel dizzy for 1D3 rounds (halve all visual skills as the eyes try to refocus).

Associate Cults

Yelm provides Summon and Command Salamander.

Vrimak provides Speak to Birds.

Yelmalio teaches 2 handed spear with shield to his mercenary kinsman.