Marks of Power
Adventurers, or those who follow a Path are uncommon in Doman. They represent a very small sub-class of the population. Most people are happy going about their daily routine. Still there are those who seek something better in life. They often adopt a Path and become Adventurers.
When the visitors from the Empire of the South arrived, they brought the Philosophy of “The Way” with them. The Magi scholars at Dragonmount have categorized the strange powers of “The Way” as Psionics. Battleminds appear to be the toughest of the individuals who augment their fighting prowess with this new power source. Several Battleminds arrived with the visitors and most of them have gone out to explore Doman and seek adventure. Their current whereabouts are unknown.
Only a handful of Ardents were on the ship that arrived from the South so the powers of these rare individuals have been the least studied. Unsurprisingly, more than a few military men in Doman are concerned about leaders who can bolster their troops with Psionics.
Before the King’s War Artificers were relatively common in Doman, primarily amongst the Dwarves who developed the Path. With their disappearance, however Artificers have become rarer. The Magi still run a school for this Path at Dragonmount, but fewer and fewer are found who possess the gift every decade.
Like Rogues, Assassins exist in most large populations. Finding them, however, is a much harder task. It is said that behind The Barrier the Warlock King has a small army of Assassins who carry out his will. If they were somehow to find a way into the rest of Doman they would certainly cause a great deal of havoc.
With the wane of Divine power on Doman it is thought that Avengers no longer exist. Even during the height of the Church’s power this Path was considered a necessary evil. Despite protestations to the contrary, however, rumors do exist of secret orders of these holy warriors who do the dirty work for the Church. See RELIGION for a list of Deities and the powers that they bestow.
The Clansmen of Sheridar produce many Barbarians, probably because guarding The Wall is a tough job in a harsh territory and this Path seems particularly suited for such work. They are also common amongst the savage Goliaths of the north. The rare Elf might also become a Barbarian, often living on the outskirts of the forests of Glenfaddich. They would almost certainly be considered outcasts, extremists on the fringe. Barbarians in any other part of Doman are almost unheard of.
Performing minstrels are common throughout Doman. Bards, on the other hand, are rarer. What separates a minstrel from a Bard is the ability to create seemingly magical effects with their music. “Spellsinging,” as Bards call it, is a rare and precious talent… it is also a talent with a price. Because of its similarity to “The Gift,” The Order of Magi is wary of “Spellsinging.” It rumored that The Magi often keep tabs on Bards who develop the ability. See ORGANIZATIONS to learn more about The Order of Magi.
The Gods were once a powerful force in Doman. For reasons unknown to anyone, their power began to wane after the King’s War. While the Church is still a powerful political entity, it is rare for any of its priests to gain Divine powers. True Clerics are priests who can perform “miracles.” They represent a very small portion of the Church and are sometimes resented by the priests who cannot perform miracles. Adventuring priests are almost always True Clerics. See RELIGION for a list of Deities and the powers they bestow.
Druids are followers of “The Earthmother.” They protect nature and all her creatures. Slightly more common than Clerics, they can often be found living in the wilderness between villages. They try to remain detached from civilization, only interfering if it encroaches on their protected lands. Druids are also common amongst the Elves because of their strong attachment to “The Earthmother.”
Stories have existed for generations that speak of Holy men and women who possess a small part of the God’s might. These Invokers did not use prayers or holy symbols; instead they channeled Divine power directly to devastating effect. Of course, these are all just stories for as any priest will tell you, there has not been an Invoker in Doman for a thousand years.
Fighters are the most common of the adventuring Paths. They can be ex-soldiers or restless youths who take up the sword in search of adventure. Fighters practice their trade in a number of ways: guarding caravans, serving in standing armies, or doing mercenary work. Fighters can be found in every Race, Clan or Tribe.
Monks are new to Doman. They first appeared about thirty years ago when a ship from the Empire to the South arrived off the coast of the Free Isles. The ships brought with them teachers of a philosophy merely called “The Way.” They also brought with them a form of Unarmed Combat never before seen in Doman. Unlike Ardents and Psions who are primarily Devas, most of the Monks who arrived were Human. These exotic looking Brothers of “The Way” occasionally take in students from Doman. They are very picky, though, and no one knows the criteria to make one acceptable to the Brothers. There are small handfuls of Monks, both Southern and from Doman who travel the lands, searching for the perfection that all Brothers of the Way seek. See ORGANIZATIONS to learn more about the Brotherhood of “The Way”.
The Church employs elite groups of dedicated warriors who protect the faith and the faithful. Paladins aren’t trained; instead prospective Paladins are called upon by the Gods themselves, usually in a life altering vision. It is considered a great honor to receive the vision and few reject the calling. Like Clerics, Paladins are often resented by their holy brethren who cannot perform miracles, it is rare however for anyone to mention that fact to a Paladin’s face.
Like the other Psionic Paths, Psions came to Doman with the visitors from the South. The Devas who make up this Path have been known to test citizens of Doman to see if they might be able to follow “The Way.” So far it appears that no one yet has the talent to become a Psion. The Magi seem very wary of Psions but so far have done nothing to stop the Devas and their testings. See ORGANIZATIONS to learn more about the Brotherhood of “The Way.”
Rangers are a fairly common Path. They are represented amongst the Elves, the Clansmen of Sheridar, and indeed amongst all races throughout Doman. They protect the wilds, often working closely with Druids and Wardens. They are also commonly found working for the armies of the Nations, both as scouts and commandos.
Wherever there are people, there are Rogues. Some choose to live off of others, taking what they can. Others use their skills to find treasure, and adventure. No matter what their motives, Rogues use stealth and cunning to achieve their goals, often finding themselves on the wrong side of the City Watch. Rogues have been known to band together and form guilds and in some of the more corrupt cities these guilds wield as much power as the governments who supposedly run them.
Like their Arcane cousins the Artificers, Runepriests originated amongst the Dwarves. Also like the Artificers, thier numbers declined greatly when the Dwarves left Doman, so much so that this Path is no longer taught at any monestary. If Runepriests still exist in Doman, the Church is keeping them a secret.
Little is known about these elusive hunters. They are almost exclusively found amongst the Elves and the denizens of Glenfaddich do not seem all that eager to share this Path. They are effective at what they do though; the mere mention of Seekers has been known to send the military commanders of Calaran into fits.
Spirits abound in Doman. Thought to be creatures of “The Earthmother,” it is believed that spirits inhabit every living thing. Shamans are individuals who have found ways to communicate and even share power with these elusive creatures. Whereas the Church hold spiritual dominance in the cities, the villages of Doman are the province of the spirits. It is not uncommon for Shamans to be village leaders and elders.
This Path is relatively new to Doman. The first Sorcerers were the Dragonborn who came to the Magi seeking asylum. At first the Magi considered Sorcerers to be Dra’Coran, (“The Uneducated” in the old tongue) and forbade the Dragonborn from teaching anyone else their art. Recently they have eased their restrictions some and now recognize those who practice this Path as possessors of “The Gift.” They have even started training Human Sorcerer’s at Dragonholt, but so far only a few have managed to master this Path. See ORGANIZATIONS to learn more about The Order of Magi.
Swordmages are wielders of “The Gift” with a more martial bent. The Magi are rumored to have a small army of these Arcane warriors who protect Dragonholt alongside the Dragonborn. Swordmages are the second-most common wielders of “The Gift,” next to Wizards. It is also a popular Path amongst the ruling elite of Tir’Na’Norag and Eladrin Swordmages can often be found protecting their borders alongside Elven Rangers and Seekers.
Wardens are protectors of the wilds. Though not as common as Druids, these powerful warriors tend to interact more with the civilized world. Most large wilderness areas have at least one Warden who protects it. It is not uncommon for Kings to employ Wardens to watch over their private game reserves.
Not all Warlocks are evil, but that would be a difficult thing to explain to most of the people of Doman. The chaos and misery that the Warlock King inflicted on the people of Doman has ensured that this Path is almost universally reviled. The Magi consider Warlocks to be the worst sort of Dra’Coran and they have been known to deal with them brutally. Needless to say, if someone chooses to make a Pact, they would be wise to keep it a secret.
Some of the greatest military leaders throughout history have been Warlords. These inspiring and charismatic individuals are highly prized by armies all across Doman. Schools devoted to military science exist in all nations, each hoping to produce the next great Warlord who will lead his troops to glory.
Sometimes a rare Human is born with “The Gift.” For unknown reasons he or she can understand the weaves of magic. Whenever this happens, The Order of Magi invariably come calling. Most Wizards are trained by The Magi in the use of “The Gift.” There are some, though, that escape The Magi’s attention. These Wizards are considered Dra’Coran or “The Uneducated.” Perhaps they get a hold of a spellbook and teach themselves, or another Dra’Coran trained them. Whatever the case, they are considered a threat to The Magi and are often persecuted by the Order. See ORGANIZATIONS to learn more about The Order of Magi.