The Northern Wizards are a secretive order of magic users that appear to be based solely within the city of Messemprar. They are indirectly assisting the activities of the Free Unther movement, and have helped secure the Gate District for Dama and his revolutionaries.
The Northern Wizards are a recent organization, founded on the orders of Hercubes Jedea, Ceptrar of Mordulkin to create a buffer city state on the far side of Mourktar. Hercubes has decided the growing power of the temple of the Black Lord’s Altar in Mourktar is a threat to the stability of that city and if it gains control then Mourktar will become a greater threat to Mordulkin.
Hercubes bestowed a mission of the utmost secrecy on his trusted mentor Shu-Urlasq, gave him the pick of the Royal Academy of Mordulkin, and a sizeable sum from the royal treasury and sent his infiltrators to Messemprar. The name the Northern Wizards was chosen in homage to a military order of magic users formed during the rebellion of Chessenta, whose duty was to protect Messemprar from the “Red Dragon” and his armies, the Norther Wizards were long since disbanded but their memory remained in city folklore.
Since arriving in Messemprar, Shu-Urlasq has offered his skills and coin to many a An’Ular and An’Ulae house, and gained great favour among them. A well placed spell was pivotal in allowing Dama to escape his bondage and flee undetected into the city. Shu-Urlasq is now using the Northern Wizards to assist the Free Unther movement in the hope of it gaining independence from Unther.
Headquarters: The Chimaera’s Head
Members: 17 magic users and 42 agents (non magic users)
Hierarchy: Layered, the original members; known as Thrones, (from Mordulkin) form the Inner Circle, the other affiliated magic users are known as Sceptres, non magic using agents are known as Familiars.
Leader: Shu-Urlasq is the undisputed leader of the Northern Wizards, he is the wisest and most experienced member of the cabal, although he himself is answerable to Hercubes Jedea of Mordulkin (and the only member who knows the true mission of the Northern Wizards and its benefactor).
Religion: There is no official religion within this organization, but as a wizard cabal its members naturally favour the worship of a god of magic. Most of the membership comes from settlements in Unther or Threskel and have a mix of people who favour Mystra or Ish-Tarri.
Secrecy: High. The Northern Wizards never reveal their affiliation or their mission to outsiders. New recruits are carefully and closely monitored for several weeks to ascertain their motives before being approached.
Symbol: An empty throne on a beach.
The Northern Wizards are strictly controlled by the Inner Council who meet their contacts in the Chimaera’s Head inn and give missions (in coded speech) to the lesser members.
New members are recruited from trusted associates of existing members (especially for the Familiars – agents), or from known magic users in Messemprar who are carefully monitored to determine their motives and loyalties.
Promotion among the Sceptres is largely symbolic, but as yet no one has been promoted to the Inner Council from among the Sceptres.
Dogma / Motivation / Goals
The goal of the Northern Wizards is a secret known only to Shu-Urlasq and Hercubes Jedea (Ceptrar of Mordulkin). The membership of the Northern Wizards believe that the goal is to help radicals elements in Messemprar destabilize Unther with the possible long-term goal of achieving independence for Messemprar.
The Thrones are always on the lookout for information from their Sceptre contacts to gain influence over An’Ular and An’Ulae houses (used to influence their trading policies – what goods they buy and from whom, and encourage non interference in the slave uprising in Messemprar). They are also eager to hear information about any magic users in the city with the aim of recruiting suitable candidates to the Northern Wizards.
Sceptres are given a variety of missions by their Throne contacts, which range from surveillance, to information brokering, to messenger carrier, to theft, and even murder (although this has not yet been asked of any scepter). The Sceptres are encouraged to use their Familiars (junior members of the Northern Wizards who are friends or family of the Sceptre in question). for these missions, as long as they do not reveal any information about the Northern Wizards (often passing the mission off as a personal goal).
Membership / Recruiting
The Thrones of the Northern Wizards were recruited by Shu-Urlasq on the orders of Hercubes Jedea. As yet there have been no casualties among the Thrones and no new Thrones have been selected thus far (although one would assume Thrones would be appointed from trusted Sceptres).
The Sceptres are recruited by Thrones (or other Sceptres on the orders of their contact Thrones) from information they have received, selecting those who dislike the current regime in Unther and would sympathise with an independent Messemprar. A requirement of becoming a Sceptre is providing a number of close family and friends to act as Familiars, thus ensuring loyalty to the Northern Wizards at the risk of losing those friends and family.
Officially the Northern Wizards are loosely allied with the Free Unther movement, with Shu-Urlasq in regular contact with Dama (via Familiars). The Northern Wizards provide information and enchanted items (exploding pearls used to help defend the walls from attack by the armies of Unther) to the rebels and in return Dama will likely send aid to the Northern Wizards if requested.
Shu-Urlasq was secretly commissioned by Hercubes Jedea; the ruler of Mordulkin, to establish the Northern Wizards and free Messemprar from the rule of Unther, it is unclear if Hercubes would provide any direct aid to his former teacher, but additional funds or resources seem the most likely provisions to be sent (in secret).
Ass-Hurat (Good, Human – Mulan, Magic User 8): Ass-Hurat is a quiet and unassuming wizard with a great empathy for other people. She carefully considers all angles before reaching any conclusion and has thus far concluded that unless an extraordinary event takes place, their mission is doomed to failure. Ass-Hurat is thus far deeply unpopular among the other Thrones of the Northern Wizards and so is considering entering into negotiations herself with the authorities of Unther.
Borsipa (Evil, Human – Mulan, Magic User 2): Borsipa is a slave girl with some magical talent. Originally part of the Free Unther movement, she has been inducted into the Northern Wizards as a Familiar (on the suggestion of Dama), but in reality she is an informant for An-Unaki and the forces of Unther.
Nin-Imrud (Neutral, Human – Mulan, Magic User 8): Nin-Imrud is one of the Thrones of the Northern Wizards, he is idealistic and principled and firmly believes that Gil-Geamesq must be stopped for Messemprar to survive. Nin-Imrud is becoming jaded and pessimistic at the slow and secret progress the Northern Wizards are making so far.
Shu-Larse (Good, Human – Mulan, Magic User 9): Shu-Larse is the confidante and friend of Shu-Urlasq, one of the Thrones of the Northern Wizards, and although he does not know for sure of the true mission of the Northern Wizards he has made an educated guess (correctly). Shu-Larse will always back Shu-Urlasq’s vote in a meeting of the Inner Circle, but is happy to confront his friend privately if a mistake has been made (and has caused Shu-Urlasq to change his mind on at least 2 occasions.
Shu-Urlasq (Good, Human – Mulan, Magic User 13): Shu-Urlasq is the leading member of the Order of Northern Wizards in Messemprar. He is a trusting man that believes in his friends and allies, but he is no fool. Shu-Urlasq is dedicated to fulfilling the mission Hercubes Jedea entrusted him with; to free Messemprar from the rule of Gil-Geamesq and create a city state to counter the rising threat of the True Church of Bane in Mourktar
Sin-Usudra (Evil, Human – Mulan, Magic User 8): Sin-Usudra is one of the Thrones of the Northern Wizards but he is considering leaving the order and returning home to Mordulking. Sin-Usudra does not believe their task is possible and that they will all be slaughtered, he feels he is in very real danger in Messemprar and the pressure is starting to cause mental strain and erratic behaviour.
T-Ammuz (Neutral, Human – Mulan, Magic User 7): A house wizard for the noble (An’Ular) House of Ram and one of the Sceptres of the Northern Wizards, T-Ammuz claims to be a wizard from Chessenta who arrived in Messemprar 3 years back as a caravan guard. Shortly after arriving he ingratiated himself with the nobles of the House of Ram (by exposing their last house wizard as a fraud) and is influencing their trading policy as well as providing magical assistance. T-Ammuz is secretly a Red Wizard in service to Aznar Thrul, his mission is to encourage the An’Ulae houses loyal to the House of Ram to trade with Thayan merchants as well as to look out for experience military personnel who may have an interest (and possible success) in leading a war against the gurmasate of Unther.
Spheres of Influence
Unther: The Northern Wizards have little interest in most of Unther, they are concerned only with it’s most northern city.
Messemprar: The Northern Wizards will continue to surreptitiously incite unrest and rebellion amongst the populace of Messemprar until the city is independent or all it’s members are gone. At the moment the slave rebellion of Dama seems the most likely route to success, but if that revolt fails then another will be started within a few years. The Northern Wizards remain entirely focused within Messemprar, with a large proportion of House Wizards, and foreign magic users trapped in the city forming part of its membership.
The Northern Wizards have enough funds to account for the entire annual taxable income of Mordulkin (1 year only), which amounts to several hundred thousand gold pieces. These funds have been used to establish a headquarters (by permanently renting several rooms in the Chimaera’s Head (under the name of the An’Ular House of Ish), create a large cache of single use magical items that would greatly aid any violent uprising, and to aid the failing ventures of a number of An’Ulae households (and thus earn their loyalty).
The Northern Wizards still have over half of their original funds remaining (amounting to 178,000 gold pieces), which is enough to hire several mercenary companies for several months if required. The rescued businesses of the An’Ulae households bring in some revenue (much reduced during this period of civil strife) which may keep the Northern Wizards in coin when their reserves run out.