The Sons of Marchanter has its headquarters within the abandoned Temple of Heironeous at the heart of the Dark City, and is actually much larger than the public believes with a population of well over 200 (only the leaders know for sure). Many of the members claim to be direct descendants of Marchanter though none have bothered to prove this to any others. The leaders of the Sons actually claim to be Marchanter's real sons and daughters by raped female slaves and thus have taken the Melkotia name. While all members will swear that this is true (even under torture), many if not most secretly do not believe it, but greatly fear their very real power. Some of the rank and file members, however, really are the children of people who once worked in the castle (castle guards, cooks, maids, servants, lab assistants and apprentices, etc.). A few of these original castle occupants are even still alive, though most had never even laid eyes on Marchanter during their stay in the castle (they always say they knew him personally of course).
All members of the Sons above 1st level are double-classed in one of two combinations: fighter-mage or thief-mage (either side can be the primary class). All must meet appropriate minimums in their important ability scores to reach certain levels, thus every member is quite skilled. The Sons recognize that although Marchanter may have been a very powerful archmage, he is not a god (at least, to their knowledge, not yet). Thus there are no priests (though they mislead the public into believing so) and the word "cult" is never used by the membership. All members must be human or mostly human.
Every member wears a special ring as an identifying emblem. The
are supposedly a copy of a ring of great power created and worn by
himself. The original was rumored to be composed of a strange metal not
found on the Prime Material Plane and was set with a single red gem
not of this plane. Its powers are unknown. The faceted gem has
emblem somehow carved into it. Sons of less than 6th level have silver
rings set with a garnet. Sons of 6th and higher have gold rings set
high quality garnets. The leaders have gold-platinum alloy rings set
rubies. All the stones have Marchanter's emblem carved into it. The
look quite ordinary to the uninitiated unless closely examined with a
but members are trained to identify them from a range of 6 feet. The
for revealing this information to a non-member is well known to every
who receives a ring: what is left of your soul when the Sons' leaders
with your body will be sold to a lower planar creature (baatezu,
or tanar'ri) in return for information useful to the Sons.
2. Research into the workings (structure and politics) of the multiverse - particularly the aims and actions of the Powers (gods, archfiends, etc.). As a result, the Sons do not follow the teachings of any one particular god, though individual members may. A handful of gods have the leaders' "seal of approval".
3. Investigations into the disappearance and present whereabouts of Marchanter, what he was working on, how to bring him back.
4. Take control of Melkotia Castle (sometimes referred to as the "Nexus" by the leaders, perhaps because of its importance to their plans), particularly to reach the Library (believed to be the largest in the world), Marchanter's quarters, his various labs, etc. to get a hold of the powerful magic items and spells that are rumored to be there, and to follow the previously stated aims.
5. To expand their sphere of influence and knowledge over as large a geographic area as possible.
Because of this obsessive quest for knowledge, the Sons have more detailed knowledge about Lord Marchanter Melkotia and Melkotia Castle than most any other sources. They also have a much clearer, less biased view of the aims and relationships of the Powers than any other organization, and their spy network have uncovered much of the inner activity of most western Flanaess governments, churches, cults and other organizations. Rumor is that even the Scarlet Brotherhood, an organization the personifies deception and duplicity, has been infiltrated.
You may ask "what is wrong with any of those ambitions?" They all
quite harmless... well, with the exception of bringing back one of the
most dangerous tyrants to ever walk the Oerth. In their case, the end always
justifies the means. The Sons are willing to do anything that
them towards their goals. While members may be any neutral or evil
their leaders are as evil as they come. And what do most insiders
will happen if the above is even partially accomplished (though it is
discussed)? - The power they will have once they have all this
and magic will enable them to take control of and rule a large area of
the continent, crushing any opposition. The creation of a new Empire,
Marchanter's name. In preparation for this, the Sons have spies placed
in many governments and most large wizards guilds in the Flanaess.
Marak Melkotia - human male; high level wizard; Supreme Leader of the Sons; very imposing, quiet, brooding personality; extremely intelligent; brilliant planner; obsessed with the secrets of Melkotia Castle; the intellectual force behind the Sons.
Kerene Melkotia - human (¼ elven) female; high level wizard; 2nd-in-command; very intelligent, expert diplomat; more outgoing personality, pretty face hides her ruthlessness; supervises wizard training; deals with internal problems.
Jarath Melkotia - human male; high level thief; very intelligent; spymaster for the Sons; quiet, average-looking; very little is known about him.
Jorak Melkotia - human male; high level
Leader of the Black Guard; 6'6", very muscular, pitch black full plate
armor - a very imposing figure who strikes fear in everyone who sees
death and evil seems to radiate from him, kills quickly and viciously
very little provocation - failure means death, no excuses; corridors
when he strides by.
In 6081 the "Purging " occurred when several "Sons" were
Shortly thereafter (6082) the Sons became a fanatical cult, beginning
recruit and train followers. Forays were attempted into Melkotia
but were all turned back or destroyed. The Castle had become thoroughly
overrun by strange and deadly creatures. With a large contingent of
members, the Sons managed to take and hold the New Guard Tower (the
smallest part of the Castle that serves as the only entrance). On the
anniversary of Marchanter's disappearance (6093) the Sons took control
of the Old Guard Tower and Barracks (the next building) after much loss
of life. The true number being known only to the higher level members,
a rumor among junior cult members is that fully half of the cult gave
lives in that assault. In 6096 (the 70th anniversary of the start of
Years of Dark Terror) a party of high level cult members attempted to
the Laboratory building. They were never heard from again.
The single most important reason - free training of the highest
quality amongst a brotherhood of people with similar interests and
background (generally loners with no families or homes). Other members
become their only family.
Your new life has begun.
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