Rising from the Sarcophagus [1 ABT]

For more than 1800 years, ever since the mirial wormhole was discovered, the inquisition was the only entity with power over the emperors. That changes in 1ABT. What exactly happened is to be documented in this topic.

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11.2.1867. ERA OF UNITY
ILANOR

On this day more than 18 centuries ago Emperor Turcafinwë Adaraitalë gave the inquisition supreme power over Calerostan religion, making them almost as powerful as himself and making them the only entity that could hurt the emperor in any way. This system held for centuries and worked well. Then came the Miraline war. It set the inquisition into overdrive, turning it into a institute of hate against all that are a product of sin, be it willingly or not. Emperor Edhelgil Belaith Oialë was going to be the one that put a stop to it.

The date was chosen precisely. It was the climax of the week of celebration of the religious revolution. All major inquisitors ware in the inquisitorial palace. It was a once in a year occasion. The high council of the priestly order had written a declaration backed by scripture to accuse the inquisition of genocide. The emperor himself signed it.


The inquisitorial palace

The emperor didn’t get a moment of sleep the whole night. He was looking at the clock. 4am, it was time. Three legions of centurions including the first imperial encircled the inquisitorial palace, while ornithopters covered the sky above it. There was no entering or exiting the palace, and it would stay like that untill 7am.

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5 AM

Everything was going according to plan. That was a relief. In two hours he would approach the palace and deliver the declaration, ending the inquisition’s reign of terror. It was terrifying, but it must be done. If something goes south it could cause a civil war, but for now everything was good.

He would council with his ancestors one last time beforehand. In the meditation room there ware two Laurelin trees, taken from the sacred forest, and a patch of Oloroft flowers, as the ritual required.


A oloroft flower


Cuivië, the edhel goddess of death and ruler of the afterlife

He removed the suit and sat infront of the small altar Infront of the flower bed. While reciting a prayer to Cuivië he lit a small oil lamp and prepared the dried oloroft. Then he lit it using the lamp, puts it in the pipe anchored to the table, and puts the end of it in his mouth, closing his eyes. His body is filled with the smoke soon. He lays of the pipe, and starts to meditate. After some time he feels the air around him getting cold and still, and he stops smelling the smoke. As he opens his eyes he finds himself in a dark forest illuminated by what looked like fireflies. He stands up and starts walking forwards. Soon enough he sees a blue glow. A humanoid entity made of pure blue light.

“Father.”
“Son.”

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“I am doing it father, on this day the inquisition falls”

“on this day you are destroying all that your ancestors worked for” .

“On this day i am saving all the poor souls YOU condemned to a eternity of suffering in YOUR quest for immortality! I am avenging all of the innocent souls sent to the afterlife because of YOUR actions!”

“Who are you to oppose the will of the gods and dismantle the order set up by their will?”

“Don’t talk to me about opposing the will of the gods, heretic, for you have done sacralige to avoid meeting them and condemned trillions. By your decree the inquisition became nothing more than a death squad hunting for everyone that did the most minor sin. Go back to hell, father, i did not come here to consult you.”

The spirit swings it’s hand and the emperor is thrown against a tree

“You are a disgrace to your bloodline, Edhelgil, to your bloodline and your people! I should have killed you when i had a chance!”

The emperor stands up but is quickly thrown against a nother tree

“I gave you the gift of eternal life, eternal rulership, and you talk to me like that!”

“The only thing that you gave me…”

He gets interupted by a nother throw

"Do you not have any respect for your ancestors, do you think you’re anything compared to the accumulated glory of their continued work you want to destroy?! Who are you to them?!

The spirit tries to do a nother throw but is hit by a sharp headache

I am the emperor of Calerost, chosen by the gods to rule in this world in their name! I have lead this nation for longer than any of my ancestors and i have brought to it greater glory than any of them could ever imagine, hile you in your short reign only brought the biggest disaster in our history! YOU ARE NOTHING! YOU ARE A DEMON THAT HAUNTS ME IN MY NIGHTMARES! WELL I AM WAKING UP, AND YOU WILL NEVER TALK TO ME AGAIN! YOU WILL NEVER AGAIN TRY TO STOP ME IN MY DOINGS NOR WILL YOU BLOCK ME FROM SPEAKING TO MY ANCESTORS! BE GONE DEMON, ROT IN HELL UNTILL THE DAY OF RAGE!!!"

He punches the spirit with immense power, and it shatters, the fragments turning into smoke. The emperor is filled by a strong feeling of relief and victory.

Seconds later he saw many, many spirits aproach him from all around, surrounding him. But these ones were glowing yellow, and warmth spread from them. They ware the spirits of all of his ancestors. They spoke in unison:

“Go Edhelgil, emperor of Calerost, chosen to rule by the gods, go and avenge the innocent, free the prosecuted, in defiance of your father, in the name of the gods. Bring glory to your people, do what must be done.”

The emperor felt his heart fill with determination, he was ready. And then he woke up.

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6:30AM

The emperor wakes up from his meditation and looks at a clock. He quickly dawns the suit and goes to the palace’s landing pad. A transport craft was waiting there for him. The transporter was being escorted by a large fleet of aircraft. 15 minutes later it lands Infront of the inquisitorial palace. The emperor is greeted by the commanders assigned to this mission

“Status report?”

“All is under control, the building is fully encircled. We’re in a standoff with the inquisitorial guard, as expected.”

“Good, good. Request the grand inquisitor to come out, say that i want to talk to him. Let’s end this.”

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7:00AM

The grand inquisitor leaves the palace followed by 20 inquisitorial guards. He comes to the edge of the staircase leading down from the palace and yells:

“What is the meaning of this?! I think, my emperor that you should be aware that what you’re doing is borderline sacralige!”

“I am very much aware what I’m doing, inquisitor, but i am not here to do sacralige, but to end it!”

The emperor, followed by cameras of all major news broadcasters in the empire, unrolls a scroll and starts reading:

"With this decree, the high priesthood of Ilanor, the true and only supreme organisation of all edhel faith, finds the Supreme Inquisitive order of Calerost responsible for the deaths of multiple millions of innocent edhels by falsely sentencing them to death, thus committing the high sacralige of genocide, as well as oppression of minority groups like the Silefrim for nothing more than their genetics, and high levels of corruption present in the institution, especially in the duchy of Celebar. Because of that, the priesthood rules that the inquisition’s autonomous status and consecration is to be revoked and it put under the full authority of the high priesthood, and those responsible for the before mentioned sins and state crimes shall be put on trial. Any inquisitor that refuses to do so is to be emediately excommunicated on the spot without a trial.

High inquisitor Garavion do you peacefully accept the ruling of the high priesthood or will we have to enforce it by force?"

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The grand inquisitor just looked in shock. He couldn’t believe what was happening. He didn’t believe that the thing that brought down the fall of the inquisition would be the, untill now mostly irrelevant, high priesthood. The plan was perfect. Apsolutely perfect. The timing, the justification, everything down to having the media oversee it. He had two options: he could either surrender peacefully and go down the humiliation of trial and quite possibly execution or dishonorment but remain considered faithful, or put up resistance. If he put up resistance he would either be considered a heretic, but he could start a rebellion against the emperor. But would that succeed? He didn’t have time to think it over.

“I am waiting for your answer, high inquisitor.”

“You will have to take me in by force, I’m afraid. I will not willingly accept this kind of sacralige, as will no inquisitors who are true to the cause”

“So be it. Legions, advance! Kill no one, just capture them. Treat anybody who willingly hands himself over with uttermost respect as they’re not prisoners! We are better than that!”

And so the legions advanced. The grand inquisitor put up resistance but was powerless against the legionaries. Most inquisitors in the palace walked out willingly, some even praising the emperor as they passed him. The emperor went back to the royal residence in Calerost city. In a hour more he would be holding a speech.

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A hour later the emperor held his speech. He talked about the crimes of the inquisition and oppression of the silefrim and similar groups. He ended the speech by removing his helmet, revealing that he himself is silefrim and had to hide from the inquisition. He easily gained the support of the people, ever loving of the emperor and angry at the extremism of the inquisition. Under the control of the high priesthood it was sure to be more just and orderly.

meanwhile on Celebar prime…

Duke Estaron of the house of Lanthirphen, ruler of the duchy of Celebar was looking at the news.

“This can not be happening, THIS IS NOT HAPPENING!!!

He says and slams his hand on the table, almost knocking it over.

“Father calm down”

“Achardirion are you in the slightest bit aware of how bad this is?! Let me enlighten you, shall i?! We only manage to hold our rule thanks to the inquisition and it’s corruption! The inquisition basically enforces our laws, takes care of our enemies, inflicts terror into anyone who even thinks to oppose us! And in return we give them a substantial amount of money and protection. You should know that damn it, you’re my son and heir!!!”

“I am aware, father, but blind rage won’t get us anywhere but into our own graves. We need to keep calm and decide our course of action. We have some time.”

Duke Estaron calms down.

“I raised you to be wise son, you are right everywhere except in one part: we don’t have time. You think the emperor is not aware of the exact situation in our duchy. Hell by tomorrow there will be warrior priests and fresh priests of Cuivië from ilanor to enforce the will od the high priesthood on the inquisition here. Call a emergency meeting of the high council. By 16:00 i want everyone important to be in the meeting hall.”

“As you wish father”

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The high council of Celebar is the highest institution of the duchy. A advisory body, but it’s rulings ware most often unanimous. It is made up from the duke of Celebar, his heir, 3 rotating counts, one permanent count, that being the count of nenothrond thanks to house Tinnu being a higher house, the highest ranking inquisitor in the duchy and two military advisors.

It is hard to overstate the haste with which all the members gathered, they all knew what this was about. Soon the Hall of heroes, the monument to all of house Lanthirphen that fell in the miraline war, was filled with councilors. Per tradition they all wore hooded robes, keeping their hoods up untill they break their silence.

Duke Estaron broke the silence first:

“I do not think i need to say what this meeting is about, we all know. The emperor is dismantling the inquisition as we know it. Without the inquisition our duchy is weak, fragile. They are trough what we assert our power. We can not let our duchy fall.”

“i doubt that the emperor would let one of his vasals fall to ruin, Estaron. He has probably spent years if not decades planning every last detail of this. Why would he leave us to the wolves?”

The count of Nenothrond, lord Nínion “Iaur” (“the old”) of the house of Tinnu

“Power, Ninion, Power. The inquisition is the only institution that can dethrone him, and as he admitted he is of the unholy race of silefrim. He is done with hiding his sacrilegious nature.”

“Why then would he high priesthood support him? If he was doing high sacralige in his own interest a religious institution would never support him.”

One of the lesser counts removed his hood

“Threats? Bribery? Who knows. It doesn’t matter. What matters is how we deal with it”

"Exactly. We have no time for theories we need to act. We need to either rapidly reorganize or rebel. Admiral Baithor, is it possible to declare martial law across the whole duchy untill we form a capable police force? Because i am not inviting the damn imperial police department into our duchy.

“Virtually impossible. We do not have enough troups to cover all of our planets and the countal planetary guards are iffy at best, but when i told you that we needed to invest into proper joint duchy backed training for them you said it was a waste of money.”

“Right. What about resisting?”

“We’d be marked as heretics and the imperial fleet would go in, probably removing you from the throne and replacing you with a junior branch loyal to the emperor, as well as occupying the duchy”

“Exactly. Well said, inquisitor”

“So that’s it? We die in every way. Either Celebar falls into instability and is eventually is occupied by the emperor, we get occupied by our own demand or we get destroyed in war.”

“The prince speaks in harsh words. It is not nearly as bad as he says. Inviting the imperial police to hold older would temporarily give the emperor some additional power over the duchy for 5 years or so untill we can form a duchy wide effective police force. The money won’t be a issue as we will no longer need to pay the inquisition, so…”

“Excuse me but the duke is honor bound to…”

“Yes yes, honor bound to hold up the deal with the inquisition as long as they rule the duchy. Thing is the old inquisitorial order is dishonored and destroyed. Honor binding does not apply to anything or anyone dishonored. You’re a inquisitor, you should know that.”

“The dishonoring itself is not legitimate as it’s a act of high sacralige! Why would we honor something like that!”

“Calm down, count Crithon.”

“But he does have a point and it’s a legitimate point. Any complying with the emperor is accepting the sacralige he’s doing as legitimate. What will you decide, my duke?”

The duke was silent for a few moments. The weight of the decision was enormous. He turned to the last figure that remained hooded and asked:

“What do you think, captain? You have experience in the imperial navy and with the princess regent, your opinion is important here.”

Captain Mirion removed his hood.

“I say that I’d rather die standing than live kneeling. Will we really allow the emperor and his heretical galactyan allies ruin our duchy? I don’t think we will. If we must die for the truth may we enter Queltar’s hall today!”

After a long second of silence, the duke answered:

“So be it then. Effírië ar quelmë.”

“EFFÍRIË AR QUELMË”

“This is redicilous! Will we really blindly go into a suicidal revolt for a corrupt institution the high priesthood itself declared sacrilegious?!”

“We will hold to the old ways. Admiral Crithon, please mobilize the fleet and tell our allies to do the same”

“It will be done, my lord”

Count Nínion drew his blade

“I will not allow this! Duke Estaron, i challenge you to a duel to the death! I will stand fighting for my beliefs!”

The whole crowd turned to the duke, who walked away from the table and drew his blade.

“Then you will die a fool, hut braver than most. I accept.”

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The two nobles took positions, standing around 5 meters from each other and turn on their personal shields. They ware both skilled swordsman trained in multiple forms of swordfighting, but the slashing style was the main of both of them.

One of the lower ranking counts was picked to be the referee. He was important to ensure no one was cheating, as cheating in a duel, especially a duel to the death, was highly dishonorable. If you agreed to fight to the death you would accept your fate.

“On your mark, get set, go!”

The fighters move like lighting, quickly being at each other’s necks. Their moves are precise and powerful, their attacks awe-inspiring. Their blades spark when they collide with each other and their shields flash repeatedly.

However it is visible that Nínion’s age caught up with him. Though his technique is superior and more honed, the energy of Estaron’s relative youth more than balances it.

Their shields have been drained low. Nínion grabs his blade with both hands and takes a opening. Gathering the whole strength of his aging body he unleashes a powerful attack targeting the duke’s neck. A bright red flash is unleashed as the duke’s shield brakes from Nínion’s power attack. Ninion stands paralized for a second. He did it? Even after all these years and being on the defensive most of the duel he killed the duke? No he didn’t, he felt his presence. Suddenly the room fills with a intense aura of pure rage. Ninion knows what’s coming and quickly turns to block the attack, but suddenly he sees his shield flash red as duke Estaron cuts his sword arm off in one strong move, a big bleeding scar on his face.

Ninion closes his eyes, and says to himself:

“Queltar take my soul into your halls”

And duke Estaron cuts his head off. The first casualty of the Lanthirphen heresy.

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“Son of a bitch, he almost had me there. At least he fought valiantly, been long since i had a good duel. Pack his body and sent it to Nenothrond, i want it to be there this same day. And send me a medic to close this wound.”

Multiple guards rush into the room, most to Nínion’s dead, decapitated body to carry it away. A nother one comes to duke Estaron with a first aid kit, quickly closing his wound with a skin welder.

Captain Mirion approaches the duke

“Always sad to see a high noble die, but he would have been just a issue”

“He will be like this too, if not even more. His young daughter will take the throne and she will definitely not be on our side, and with her youth will act with a lot less thinking and a lot more rapidly. And the other nobles will use his death as justification to join in too.”

“So what are we to do?”

“The same we planned, no turning back now. Mirion, you have fought with the imperial navy both in the Tiyanki territories and in the wormhole war, you know it probably better than most of my men. I promote you to admiral and order you to prepare the fleet for a direct attack on Nenothrond, we can’t leave it behind our backs. I want to see offensive actions tomorrow. Got that?”

“It shall be done.”


With this Rising from the sarcophagus ends. The story of the Lanthirphen heresy and the chaos that followed is to be continued in the stars devided thread

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