The Serin Mystique, Volume 4, Issue 2

Welcome to the Serin Mystique, Volume 4, Issue 2! My my my! Guilds
unveiling new battle techniques, a former legion of darkness converting to
lead the Knights of Valour, the death of a host of well known cabal members
and more new people wondering around lost than this scribe has seen in some
time! We live in interesting times but lucky you have us heralds at the
Serin Mystique to make sense of it all!

The sections you can 'look' at in the Serin Mystique are:

1) Recent News (see recent, recent2)
2) Knightly Affairs (see Knights)
3) Justicial Affairs (see Justice)
4) Warlordian Affairs (see Warlords)
5) Legionnick Affairs (see Legion)
6) Heraldric Affairs (see Heralds)
7) Serin Musings (see Musings)
8) The Creative Corner (see Creative)
9) Obituaries (see Obituaries)

We hope that the voices of the past will guide your future journeys.

1) Recent News


Groq's Ascension - Homi
A wise man once wrote, "Our age is retrospective. It builds the sepulchers
of the fathers. It writes biographies, histories, and criticism. The fore-going
generations beheld God and nature face to face we, through their eyes....

Why should we grope among the dry bones of the past, or put the living
generation into masquerade out of its faded wardrobe? The sun shines
today also." Often, Serins of today look upon the past in nostalgic
wistful- ness, as if the present were voided of original energy and young
passion. A Valourian especially may look upon the images of his political
forefathers and wonder if ever there shall be another Arkhalis, Torin, or
Runath, men of such moral strength and dignity that one may feel
paralyzed by the mere thought of attempting to imitate them. And yet, it is
through imitation that the best moral character may be developed.
Imitation leads to mastery of form, and mastery of form leads to new
power, power struggling and driving itself towards new expressions. When
I speak of power, of course, I speak of personal force and magnanimity --
the infinitude of the sovereign soul, bathed at birth in the coddling images
of the past.

However, such fashioning of the self is rarely achieved, for common men
and women grow burdened by the dull toiling of everyday existence. A
farmer has heard all the grand tales, and wearily says, after a long day's
work laboring in the fields, "And what of it?" A seamstress looks up from
her repetitive work, suffocating the life out of the creative inner kernel of
her being, and asks, "Will your great heroes feed my children?" No,
tradition and gross custom have their limits, and imitation is a privilege of
those entitled enough to make it work for themselves.

What is needed, then, is a sudden influx of power, an original energy,
unfolding outward from within itself, like an organic movement of the spirit.
Such power, such _divine inspiration_, has come to us, and we must
reckon with its consequences and implications. Now we shall learn to live
by impulses, and spontaneity of spirit will push us by fits into boundless
horizons. Newness is now our guiding principle, and our souls shall
breathe in great measures once again.

I speak, of course, of Groq's conversion. Never before has such a
momentous event occurred, and we shall not soon forget it. Gaze in
exuberant felicity at the future that has opened up for us. A new heart
beats in Valour, one that at one time beat in sluggish foulness,
contaminated by the base desires of the flesh: wealth, territory, and
material power. Groq's transformation nourishes us all with previously
unsavored sustenance. The movement from earthly desire to spiritual
perfection is complete, and we are the better for it, for truly now we know
that evil need not be a fundamental characteristic of Being, but merely one
Test for the troubled soul. Who is not absolutely astounded and thrown
from their complacent seats? Even the farmer and seamstress turn their
shimmering eyes upon this Dragon Reborn, this Child of Sarich, and laugh
in joy and amaze- ment. The Universe speaks. Its revelation signals to us
a coming new age. Can you read the signs writ upon the stars'

I am Homi Bhabha, Prophet of Hope, and Noble of Valour. May Groq
bless Valour, the Castle, and all living creatures, good and bad.

Current Events - Isador

A new clan has arisen in the lower ranks of the mage guilds as mages
announce the coming of a new clan with the intent to draw support for
some sort of mystic organization. They have announced that a long since
dead mystic has sent them from the realms of death to attempt to gain
support for such an organization, which could be entirely possible, as
even I have heard word from said mystic about such matters. The two
young mages responsible for this clan are a Drow Invoker named Mahtan
and an Elven Healer named Larsanna. This clan could spell a new era for
Serin where mystics may more aptly contribute to the realms than ever
before as something other than Warmongers and Lawmen or it could
mark trouble for the people of Serin on a grander scale. Which will
happen only time will tell.


Are we then hypocritical? Actually, no. It is Seringale that exercises
hypocrisy, for it only protects life within its city limits, and extends its
protection to those who consistently violate the right to life. The laws of
Valour, on the other hand, are quite consistent. It possesses certain
values that are applied everywhere and to anyone in any situation.
One may wonder how this is so, since Valour's laws only apply to
Valour. One forgets, however, that the Knights of Valour extend the
mores of Valour, the tenets of the Light and the Good, to all of Serin by
engaging in crusades and battles against evil creatures. Valour merely
takes the same principles the Knights operate by and formalizes them
into a system, so that living creatures everywhere may enjoy their
freedoms in safety, for the Knights cannot patrol and be everywhere at
once. Thus, though Valour is the Holy City of Serin, the political
organization that directly represents the ideals of the Light and the
Good, it is, in many ways, only an expedient device leveraged for a
further end. It provides organized security because the Knights are
often struggling to enforce the universal moral norms of the Light
abroad in distant lands. This is also why any Serin who murders a
citizen of Valour is immediately anathema'd, even if such a murder did
not occur within Valour's city- limits (like it would need to be in
Seringale). Of course, people who murder non-Valourians for no just
reason are also subject to the wrath of the Knights of Valour.
Anathemas merely give Knights license to exert greater force, for
Valour is the Holy City, and thus will always have a closer place to the
heart of any Knight, just as one's family will always have a greater
place in one's heart than another's, even though both families deserve
equal consideration generally.

One may offer an objection regarding the subjective viewpoint of the
nobles, who are charged with the responsibility of making sure that the
laws of Valour are adhered to, as well as flagging as anathema to
Valour those who break the laws. Some may wonder, as a recent
Herald put it, who watches the watchers? Seringale, after all,
administers "justice" according to a set of objective laws that are never
deviated from, so that there is no room for subjectivity or fallibility in
their application of the laws. In effect, they are like automatons, or
trained dogs, for they are unable to use their _judgment_ in deciding
what is wrong and right. Valourian nobles, on the other hand, do
exercise judgment quite often, for they do not indiscriminately
administer justice in accordance with a series of laws engraved upon
stone. We utilize our good sense and Sarich-given good judgment, so
that only those who deserve to be secured against harm are secured.
And so the objection, usually issued in a whiny, petulant voice, "What
prevents you from abusing or misapplying your laws, since it's always
left up to the noble to decide when to deliver anathema flags?" The
answer is so ridiculously easy that it hardly warrants discussion: we
prevent ourselves. We are Lightwalkers, and employ our consciences
in all matters that may pass by our everday experiences.

If somehow we become corrupt and twisted, then the remedy for that is
similarly obvious. The Immortals cast us from our positions, guilds, and
citizenship status. Perhaps in other worlds where gods do not exist
and interact with mortals the question may have some force. After all,
no one can know the mind of another, and corruption may become
rampant with nothing to hold it in check. But Serin does not have this
problem. Our gods walk the earth and make sure that we behave
according their ideals. There is no room for corruption. However, some
nobles may make mistakes in deploying anathemas. This is true, and
cannot be avoided. But such is human judgment in all matters of life.
But unlike some terrible mistakes, anathemas may be recalled, and
things smoothed over. This is what happened with Maxlhorn, among
others. If it is an honest mistake, then the mistake will be rectified.

2) Knightly Affairs


Current members include Executor Prastin, Archon Jermayn, Knight
Adeiwin, Knight Jaran, Footman Iriqeous, Footman Montufa, Footman
Haelraltar and Footman Revaqin

Current nobles include Aldacer, Miryia, Queeg and Iyuri

The Knights of Valour are becoming quite the force to be reckoned
with again. With the ascension of Groq as their immortal leader and a
whole new palate of Footmen, they are in a prime position to do battle
against the evil of Serin. Even with the loss of one of their members
and one of their supporting nobles, they are unswayed.

An apologia for Valour's Laws by Homi
What is justice? True justice is the fair and impartial treatment of all
living beings, giving to each what they are due - no more and no less.
Doesn't sound very complicated, does it? If Serins are said to
possess an unalienable right to life, given to them at birth as an
absolute claim, so that no man may dispossess another of that right,
then true justice demands that the power to protect that right (and
power to compensate individuals for when that right is breached) be
extended to all living creatures on Serin and applied to all situations,
not just in Seringale. Thus, if one man destroys another man,
effectively robbing his victim of his life, it should not matter that such an
act occurred in abandoned Old Thalos or the lawless forest of Haon
Dor. Such true justice is morally correct.

And yet, the precise logic employed by the Justice cabal is just the
opposite. The Justice cabal's philosophy of justice is completely
devoid of all moral content. How so? Well, they extend their conception
of justice only to Seringale's city limits, so that if an evil man destroyed
an innocent in Timaran, such an evil man is not in the wrong. If
anything, it is the innocent who is reprimanded for being so foolish as
to believe he had the right to live outside Seringale, as if only Seringale
could dispense and gaurantee this right, rather than acknowledging it
as a right given to us at birth by the gods, and not an artificial construct
of society. Secondly, Seringale purports to treat all as "equals," even if
many do not deserve to be the equals of others. A murderous
Legionnaire, for example, may enjoy the protection of Seringale
despite his blatant disregard for the sanctity of life. What is the reason
behind the Justice cabal's securing the Legionnaire from harm? Surely
there is no _moral_ reason. At best, it is an arbitrary commitment to the
equality of all living things, though such equality can only manifest
itself within Seringalean city limits. Hmm, indeed. Seringale, it is clear,
possesses an absurd notion of equality, if equality we may even call it.

Only Valour has the proper and consistent understanding of justice,
equality, and fairness. Valour recognizes that the sins of men and
women are not washed from their souls as soon as they pass the gates
of Valour, like they are in Seringale. No, Valour is more critical and
ethical than that, my friends. If an evil man enters Valour, he is likely to
be exposed to a host of harms. And what is wrong with that? A
dark-knight or shaman, for example, have no respect for the sanctity of
life, and thus are not to be treated as equals to good men. Thus,
Valour's laws dictate that no Lightwalker shall be anathema'd for
stepping over the legal boundaries set up in Valour in order to purge a
dark one. A dark one, of course, is not entitled to the same
consideration and privilege.

(continued) See Knights2

3) Justicial Affairs


Current members include: Commander Cramen, Captain Grimp, Captain
Taere, Lieutenant Grunky, Sergeant Devorast, and Officer Bobinfudder.

Crime within the city of Seringale has risen recently, but with Seven
members and a regular patrol, the legion are on top of it. Bobinfudder
helped to relieve the recent loss of two of their members, so they have not
suffered too much. Their new location was described as "much cleaner
the last" and seems to be working out for them, although they have seen
no no difference in its security. Although the Iron fist is still strong, they are
still on the lookout for young, able bodied officers, and also some
interesting depictions of Grimp for the walls of graffiti that lead towards
their new cabal.

4) Warlordian Affairs


Current members include Bepodo, Dumuzi, Ellar, Hizang, Latamire, Lqeu,
Morthar, Naurisahn and Graxxus.

Warlords, traditionally quiet in there affairs, remain a strong presence
within Serin. With one member, Hizang, recently reaching pinnacle, and
another, Lqeu, on her way, the halls are properly reflecting the strength
and solidity of the Warlords. Bepodo, Warmaster of the Warlords, remains
very grateful for his upstanding position and hopes to see the Warlords
flourish. His main concern is having someone who relishes the Warlords
as much as he does finds their way to his position. Something else that
Bepodo commented on was the lack of announcements or calls to arms
that the Warlords send out. Becoming a Warlord is like no other cabal.
They believe highly in their members being called by a certain destiny.
They believe that future warlords "know who they are." Bepodo, confident
and proud of his current group of Warlords could only find one
disappointment: a lack of duels. Serin has seemed to produce a
generation of honor-less curs not able to risk death in a noble duel.

5) Legionnick Affairs


Current members include Bobolobo, Rodeurs, Lothadon and Varrell.

The Legion of Serin are out in full force, although with so many members
below their pinnacle, they are having a bit of a tough time keeping up the
terror that they are known for. Slowly however, they are getting stronger
and soon they will be a force to be reckoned with. It would be foolish to
ignore their rising power as they know who has and hasn't bought
protection and they will be looking for new victims.

6) Heraldric Affairs


Current members include Jyra, Isador, Azerayhna, Dartheryn, Guthfar,
Jastor, and Zanderic.

After a brief encounter with a bunch of unruly Heralds, the Halls have been
swept clean (again), with Jyra heading the cleanup efforts and assisted by
mopper Azerayhna and new sweeper Isador. With Vanisse and Torkalen
at their heels with Herald Be Good swords and spankworthy steel rulers,
the Heralds are off to scour the realms for more gossip and news to delight
you all!

7) Serin Musings


The Journey Traveled - Guthfar
War. Murder. Slaughter. Battle. Death. Violence. It is around and in
everything. Why is the one thing that we can count on to always endure,
the one thing that is the most destructive. So many die. So many give their
lives up for the glory of battle, the honor of a well fought duel, and the
spoils of war. Violence has so many causes and so many affects. You can
see it among the youngest of children, struggling for their favorite toy. And
also among the most experienced among us, defending what we believe
in. Violence is experienced by those who seek it out, forcing their
bloodshed upon others, and it even touches those who run from it the
swiftest. Death will come to us all, whether by slow time or swift steel, I will
be the first to admit this. But which death is the better? Those that die in
glorious conflict often live into history as legends, while the peaceful
continue on in their age, and disappear into the oblivion of time, forgotten
with their thoughts. Each must choose his own path. Each road has it's
own pitfalls, and it's own blessings. Your destiny is in your own hands.
Where in the historical annals of future generations will you be found? Will
it be worth the cost?

The thoughts of an old thief.

Cramen the dung thief - Khlemen
I'll make my missive short. A very special... Parcel of human waste, yes
dung was handed over to Cramen for safekeeping. Properties of this
potent reagens are not for me to divulge. But they are substantial. I believe
that the pillar of the Seringale community was the right person for this
delicate task... But oh how wrong was I... This shady character hiding
behind banner of law obviously succumbed to greed claiming this rare
artifact for himself. I plead with you to help make wrongs right and assist in
return of the precious commodity, fates of many are at stake!

My Time Comes - Jaimoa
I have accomplished the goal of pushing back the Terrain Incarnate's
manifestation. Not many of you knew of this, as why would you care? My
followers that were to continue the seal have disappeared, perhaps the
Terrain gained them, my mother and I have done what we were set out to
do. So now, I take a bow and celebrate in Seringale, shooting whatever
passes by. I'll join my mother soon, the druid that cast out her soul to the
body of that boar has released her clutch to it permanently. That means
that my time is done as well. Headmaster, you will live on of course. The
rest of you will die eventually. See the booty! Take the booty! Enjoy the
booty! Booty Booty Booty Booty rocking everywhere! Booty Booty Booty
Booty rocking everywhere! I coming mother!

My Cry for Help! - Cramen

I write this to express my deepest regret at what I seem to have turned into
with my recent grasp of power. Over the past several weeks I have slowly
been hearing tiny voices in my head, telling me what to do. At first they
were nothing and were easily ignored, but I feel that now they have
become too strong for me to simply ignore. Many of my closest friends
have found me to be brash and rude lately, qualities that I never carried
before my receipt of power. I have made statements to Valour that could
possibly lead to war, and in my most recent and least proud moment, I led
Adwerraron, a dear friend, into a death trap and took his life. I don't know
what it is I am becoming, but I pledge to you, my friends and colleagues,
that I will fight this evil that is slowly consuming me, and I need your help. If
I give in to these voices any more, then I truly fear what shall become of
me and what possible damage I might do. I send this as my official
apology to Valour for my belligerent words and to Adwerraron for the truly
wicked monster that I have become. Next time we cross paths, I pledge to
give to Adwerraron my body and all that it carries. I hope that with the help
of my friends that I shall find myself once more at peace.

8) The Creative Corner


If only: A poem - Azerayhna
If only
I was how you wanted me to be
If only
I would stop breaking us apart
If only
I could use my tears to heal you
If only
You could love me the way I am
If only
I could love you as you should be
If only
I could be any one but me
If only
We could start over again

The Story of Bonaus and the Pumpkin Man - Isador

One day when Bonaus the Minotaur was traveling through the Emerald
Forest he decided to travel to the Witch Wood where the Pumpkin men
lived there on his way through searching for unique things as he did at
times. He then rested there for his legs had exhausted themselves as they
did sometimes. There a pumpkin man lay and every so once in awhile it
would make faces at Bonaus and the Minotaur would turn swiftly so as to
try and catch the foolish creature in the act but each time he was rewarded
with what looked like a simple scarecrow. Eventually the pumpkin man
started to do impressions of the Minotaur as he watched and slowly but
surely the Minotaur got angrier and angrier as he began to rage he got up
and attacked the Pumpkin man but as he did so he was made angrier and
angrier as the Pumpkin man danced around his attacks bonking him on
the head and calling his mom an ugly billy-goat. Meanwhile Bonaus began
yelling and shouting curses so loud that the people in Seringale could hear
him and I like many others wondered what was going on. While he roared
ferociously the pumpkin man began to fight back against Bonaus and
when he finally stood still Bonaus swung his great axe up and then down
swiftly to crack the head of the pumpkin man in two. But as this happened
hundreds of tiny Pumpkins came put of the creatures head and each
sprouted legs and began to dance around poor Bonaus who was
becoming exasperated with the taunting and teasing and as he killed more
and more of the little creatures more seemed to take their place and slowly
but surely Bonaus became discouraged and ran back to Timaran where
he took out his anger in the Arena and to this day the little creatures still
chant his name and make fun of him hoping that he will return to them for
some more fun.

The Storm - Jyra
A drop of rain falls
from the clouds
on the flowers
on the ground.

A drop of rain splatters
to the ground
on the grass
by my foot

Rivers tumble from the sky
Soaking my body
filling my bones
with a chill.

The wind blows my hair
whips the autumn leaves
spits water in my eyes
and it stings

My eyes leak water
which mixes with the rain
which runs down my cheeks
to spatter on the ground

Rivulets carry the leaves
carry the water
carry the tears

The wind blows the clouds
blows the rain
blows itself

The sun shines on the flowers
dries the ground
dries my skin
warms my soul.

In the sky a rainbow glows
spreading light
spreading beauty
and giving hope

After the rain the land is fresh
Flowers are fed
the earth is soft
and we can live

9) Obituaries


Those who have passed
As many new faces enter Serin, so much old faces disappear. This
section of the mystique is written to honor those who have made an
impact in our world and lives who no longer walk among us. If there is
anyone's name you would like to see appear in the next Mystique, do not
be afraid to contact your local herald, via notes or face to face

Jakurajaki was a drow ninja from the unlit city. As he grew into a young
man in Serin, he terrorized the populance and found his way into Legion,
although his stay there did not last long. He and the legion parted ways
over a disagreement and the ninja was set free to tyrannize Serin on his
own. Soon it became too much for him and he passed from this land. The
only thing that will be missed about him is his constant disturbances to
daily life.

Amberin was a young human Invoker who fell from this mortal plane too
young to know what he could have been. He was a well respected Knight
who could have become one of the greats had he not perished so soon.
He was misunderstood, but generally well liked by his fellow knights. He
was bright and fearless and all of the knights and Serin will miss him.

Maxlhorn was a crazy Minotaur Berserker, renowned for a shorter temper
than most who rely on such anger for their successes in battle. He was as
likely to charge someone as he was to group and hunt with them and
many times such decisions were not exclusive. Impulsive and all too easy
to anger, no one felt safe around him, and while we may miss his unique
battle charge, we will not miss the insecurities he caused whenever he
was about.

Varodur was a young drow Dark-Knight and a member of the cabal
Justice. He struggled in the city of Seringale, never really gaining
confidence too far from the safe walls of the drowish dwellings where he
was treated like a prince. He was another who died too soon to realize his
potential. How cruel death can be to steal those who are only beginning to
realize the beauty of life. He is missed.

Severin was a human dark-knight affiliated with the Justice cabal. He was
born to two unassuming parents within the great city of Seringale herself
to a different name and was driven to become a justice by watching
criminals from the shadows. Like too many others, he was still young
when he passed on, and as a result was not half the man he was expected
to become. Serin and especially the Justices will miss him.