Feylyn, House of Balance
House Feylyn is by far the eldest of the Great Houses of Magic. In the first generations of human settlement in Mellorian, long before Wizards learned the practices that allowed them to gain full control over their powers, Feylyn was already venerable.
The first Wizards were much like the outlawed ‘Hedge’ Wizards that still exist today within remote parts of Mellorian. They were able to tap into the source of power provided by the World Tree, but could rarely exercise control over that power, often with explosively fatal results for anyone nearby. In the case of Feylyn Wizards, excess energy was invested into the land, making theirs the safest kind of magic of the old ages.
The group of Wizards that became the first leaders of Feylyn had a strong affinity with nature and with places where green things grow. They adopted rituals that emphasised a closer tie to the cycle of life, and encouraged nearby settlements to follow their example. Within a hundred years the ‘cult of life’ had spread across a great deal of the continent. Crops grew abundantly in the fields and life expectancy increased greatly. Those early peoples of Mellorian were happy and well fed, and they assumed that this state would continue forever, but the arrival of a virulent Plague turned that assumption on its head within the space of a few years.
The contagion came without warning and spread so quickly that it overwhelmed the unfocused power of the Feylyn Wizards. Thousands died in agony, their bodies covered with festering sores. All of the power possessed by Feylyn availed them little, for the Plague resisted all attempts to heal it. In fact, where a concerted effort to cure it using magic occurred, the outbreak was even more virulent. The wielders of the magic were no more resistant than anyone else – many of the Feylyn Wizards succumbed to it, and the land was emptied of over two thirds of the population with terrifying swiftness.
Shaken by the sudden emergence of an illness that resisted magic, the remaining Feylyn Wizards spent years trying to learn the origin of the dread Plague. Some of this research pushed them far across blasphemous lines, as they sought out dark oracles and summoned minor demons in search of an answer to their questions.
What they learned changed the very foundations of the group, and gave rise to the philosophy of ‘House’ Feylyn. Dark voices had whispered to them of an eternal battle between Existence and Oblivion, between the well-spring of life and the force of entropy. For the first time men learned that these things were not mere terms to explain away passive forces of the universe, they were in fact active entities, with plans and aims that spanned millennia and to whom mortal lives were as specks of dirt.
If one side became too powerful, then the other would forcefully seek to redress the uneasy balance that had developed over long aeons. In this way the previous teachings of Feylyn had invited a certain disaster upon Mellorian. The agent of Oblivion within the world, the Great Wyrm of Darkness, had issued a pestilence to bring death where Feylyn had promoted life. The Wizards of Feylyn resolved to ensure that this mistake would never again be repeated. This would act as their blood debt to the land; one that they would see carried out until the end of time.
In the present age, with the teachings of the Cirdaecean Hegemony allowing all fields of knowledge and learning to progress at accelerated speeds, House Feylyn finds itself standing before the precipice once again. The Cirdaeceans had unravelled many secrets of healing and of cultivation and through this the Mellorians have grown long lived and well fed. It is the certain belief of House Feylyn that the Wyrm stirs once more within its realm of eternal darkness, just beyond the wakeful eyes of man.
House Feylyn has redoubled their efforts to counteract these new ways using the wealth and influence of their ancient organisation to support those who would heed caution rather than progress. Where bribery and patronage fail, they can employ the root Wyvvic, the root of Balance, to bring death as well as life. Nature is above petty moral judgement, causing some to thrive and at the same time others to perish. This is the mind-set House Feylyn try to adopt: to protect the majority they must accept that some will have to die.
Feylyn Wizards are well versed in death. They could not be useful as healers if they did not possess a great knowledge of the body, and of plants and natural substances that can relieve or even cause pain. Their magic can call on the World Tree to give a portion of its great power to heal the sick, but this does not prevent them from calling on it to cause injury and death if there is cause. This does not come from a desire to inflict pain, but rather from that same dispassionate judgement that happens in the wild. The pack must be considered first, the individual is a mere tool to support that entity.
Due to their strong affinity with the natural order, House Feylyn Wizards share a close bond with all the creatures that roam in the wild. Many choose to live among animals as they find the civilisation of men confusing, dirty, and duplicitous. They consider that saving mankind and loving them are two separate requirements, and only the former must be obeyed. The feral allies of a Feylyn Wizard come in all shapes and sizes, from small mammals to the enormous Bears of the Glimmerwood.
For some Wizards, even this level of kinship with nature is not enough. They make a choice to bring on enforced transformation, to become little more than creatures themselves, removed from most of the constraints of humanity. By ancient rituals these Feylyn Wizards transmute themselves into all manner of strange beasts and live in the wild places of Mellorian, far from men. They exult in the thrill of the hunt, the heat of warm blood upon their fangs; its rich iron taste. Some of these men and woman choose to never once again return to their true forms. Their minds eventually become lost in a fog of instinct, and all trace of humanity is lost.
Despite all their efforts House Feylyn has done little to stem the tide of progress, and so a choice is soon to be made by the masters of the House. They must stand to one side and watch the impending doom unfold, or they must enact a culling of their own to redress the imbalance, lesser in scope but no less a tragedy. The harsh truth of nature tells them which is the wiser choice but the kindness in their hearts asks them to find another solution to turn Mellorian from its path and thus save the population from destruction.
In the wild places of the land, the agents of House Feylyn search for information, some scrap of pertinent wisdom left behind by the accursed Cirdaeceans, to arm themselves for the coming battle with the Wyrm of Darkness. Far from the cities, where House Feylyn can see many things that the other Houses cannot, it is frequently noted that secret gatherings are being held in which men spill blood in the service of corrupt spirits. The tidings of evil are close at hand, and only House Feylyn stands against the danger that no one else can see.