The conglomeration best known as “The Order” started as an order of wizards who sought to create better potions to help those in need. In order to do so, they studied the clerics of old and learned to harness their divine powers through arcane means.
In over 100 years of existence, they have become more of a cult, taking on any willing casters or knowledge seekers. They brainwash their members into a life of endless knowledge seeking and servitude, most times forcing them to forget all about their past before the order, and any friends or family they might have had. Members of the order have no names, just titles within the order, they believe individuality leads to vanity, which gets in the way of knowledge. Due to this they also all wear the same robes and masks. The mask is a metal helmet with a bird beak visor. During times of plague, they burn sage in the beak to purify the air they breathe to keep them from getting ill. They are not allowed to look upon themselves without their mask on, though there is no real penalty for doing so other than status drop if others find out.
Much like it’s members, the order itself has no real name. The mages who make up the cloister refer to it as the order, the academy, or other such general terms. Those who revere the order know it as the Nameless Clergy, while those who loathe the mages within, refer to them as Death’s Arbiters.
The order, though now comprised of many types of casters, operate by the teachings of the founding wizards. As a member of the order there are many paths you can take:
1) The Abjurer seeks to better himself through the mastery of abjuration magic. They are selfless protectors and cast spells that are used to defend their charges. They may be identified by the aquamarine trim on their robes.
2) The Conjurer seeks to help others through conjuration spells. They make adept doctors and summoners. They may be identified by the dark green trim on their robes.
3) The Diviner is the truest knowledge seeker using advanced spells that closely mirror the divination magic used by clerics. They use their magic to seek out and reveal truths. They rarely leave the halls of the academy and may often be found working in the order’s library. They may be identified by the white trim on their robes.
4) The Enchanter is a student of enchantment magic. They use their spells to enhance the abilities of others or take complete control over weak-minded individuals. Although they are often found crafting magical items. They may be identified by the brown trim on their robes.
5) The Evoker is a practitioner of evocation magic. They are masters of energy and boast the ability to make anything out of nothingness. They are hot headed and are often viewed as the order’s military. They may be identified by the red trim on their robes.
6) The Illusionist is a master of illusion magic. They weave falsehoods and masterfully keep ruling powers in their favor to protect the order’s interests. They may be identified by the blue trim on their robes.
7) The Necromancer seeks to overcome death through necromancy. They use their abilities to raise the dead and brew poisons. Looked down upon by the unlearned masses, the mostly stick to the shadows of the academy halls, operating in secret looking to end disease and suffering by reverse engineering cures. They may be identified by the dark purple trim on their robes.
8) The Transmuter uses transmutation to alter objects, and even reality itself. They have the ability to change a person or object’s size and appearance, as well as animate inanimate objects. A master Transmuter is a force to be reckoned with, but students of transmutation magic are often used withing the order as glorified janitors.
There are six levels of mastery that rank a caster’s abilities:
1) The first level is the Academic. An Academic is a new student, the lowest branch, a blank slate. The order is known to accept children as young as five years old into the academy as well as the elderly. They may be identified by their plain brown, hooded robes and black stocking masks.
2) Once an Academic has learned their basics, they may decide on a field and further their learning through an apprenticeship with a master of their chosen field. On the first day of their new study, they are given the status of Apprentice, as well the official mask of the order. They may be identified by their light gray robes and bird faced masks.
3) After their masters feel that they are ready, they are put up for review. They must spend a year preparing a presentation of their skill. During this time they are known as Initiates. They may be identified by their simple black robes and bird faced masks.
4) After passing the initiation into to the alumni of the order they continue to work in their chosen field among their peers. During this stage, they are known as Adepts and may be identified by their hooded maroon robes and bird faced masks.
5) Once they feel they are ready to move forward, they may once again submit themselves for evaluation. If the prove themselves, they are granted the title of Master and assigned an Apprentice of their own. A Master may be known by their hooded bright red robes and bird faced masks.
6) The final level within the order is Grand Master. There may only ever be eight Grand Masters at one time, one for each school of magic. When a Grand Master passes, the other Grand Masters choose the most proven mage from his school to take his place. The Grand Masters are noted by their hooded golden robes and bird faced masks.