Cold Sun Art.jpg

Eternal of Day

Sobriquets

Given that Cold Sun seems to be a relatively new eternal with no previous history of having interacted with the Empire, it is not known to have any other names.

Appearance

There has been no confirmed meeting with the eternal known as Cold Sun so its physical appearance is a matter of wild hypothesis. Some imagine that its physical form might be that of a single flame smaller than that of a candle to represent the singular perfection that it represents and wishes to impress upon the world. Others suggest that it may be the source of all the light that shines in the Day realm or that it somehow infuses all the light that shines there.

Concerns

Cold Sun represents the search for order and perfection, at any cost. The eternal appears to have some existential hatred of art and free will and its heralds claim that the inherent chaos of life, particularly art, music, and other creative endeavours represent a fundamental flaw. Cold Sun seeks to eliminate this flaw; it is determined to bring perfection to the mortal realm by killing every single sapient creature, starting with the citizens of the Empire.

Armies of Cold Sun
as of Spring 386YE
Army Territory
The Winnowers Destroyed
The Ending Tide Destroyed
The Silence Arc Hahnmark
The Still Walkers Destroyed
The Exigent Span Destroyed
The Blade of Skies Destroyed
The Empty Hands Miaren
The Fire Beacon Destroyed
The Shepherds of Ash Destroyed

History

Very little is actually known about Cold Sun. The earliest recorded instance of Cold Sun interacting with the Empire was a week before the Summer Solstice 385YE when a peculiar translucent monolith appeared at the Imperial regio at dawn with a message engraved on each of its eight sides: "A formal parley is agreed at eleven hours after noon, on Saturday during the Summer Solstice, in the Hall of the Worlds, with the Archmage of Day". The monolith disappeared at sunset the same day, and a few days later word came from Astolat, Kallavesa, and Miaren, reporting divisions of strange soldiers marching on targets in the area. At the Summer Solstice these divisions were defeated - with many Imperial losses - and the targets saved.

Even as the Archmage of Day and magicians of the Conclave met with representatives of this new eternal in formal parley, news began to spread of further attacks across the Empire. These assaults targeted locations as diverse as the Blood Red River Museum in Tassato, the Wellspring of Jade in Sarvos, the Wells of Janon in Gulhule, the farmlands of the Grey Watch Grasses in Reikos, Gulnar's Deeps, the Grand Conservatory of Music and the Tower of Light and Shadow in Redoubt, the Pavilion on Looking Glass Lake in Holberg.

The scions of Cold Sun invaded the Empire in force after the Summer Solstice. A full eight armies, later joined by the Ending Tide in Bregasland, marched through the potent regios that had been opened by the casting of Bright Eyes Gleam in the Depths. The first order of business for the Imperial Conclave at the Autumn Equinox 385YE was the Declaration of Alignment to place Cold Sun under enmity.

Shortly after the Autumn Equinox 385YE the first season of campaign against the scions began. Imperial ritualists had placed dozens of fortifications summoned from the realms in an attempt to block the armies of Cold Sun. Four of Cold Sun's armies were met with Imperial armies: in Bastion, the heart of the Way, the Winnowers were blocked by the Highborn of the Granite Pillar and seven and a half thousand independent soldiers; in Hercynia the steadings were protected by the Black Thorns marching all the way from Madruga to hold off the Still Walkers; in Segura a combined force of the Burning Falcon and the Fist of the Mountains attacked the Fire Beacon; and in Bregasland the Ending Tide were slaughtered as they entered into the mortal realm by the Bounders, Drakes, Strong Reeds, and Isaella's Dance.

Boons

The only "boon" Cold Sun offers mortal beings is a swift and efficient, if painful, death.

Heralds

Marks and Channelling
What sets the heralds of Cold Sun apart from many other enemies faced by Imperial heroes is that they are the direct beneficiaries of the eternal's power. When the text speaks of marks, or channelling, it is often using in-character language to describe effects equivalent to the enchantments created by Imperial magicians. Cold Sun's heralds are rarely equipped with magic items, but all of them are empowered with an enchantment that draws on one or more of the resonances of the Day realm. For example, a scion might be empowered with effects reminiscent of Horizon's Razor Edge, Blades of Clear Sight, Alignment of Mind and Blade, Kimus' Glaring Eye, Irresistible Stance of Force and Focus, Arete and the Fields of War, or other unfamiliar (but equivalent) abilities.

Not all the scions' abilities can be reproduced with ritual magic. The archon leaders of a Cold Sun contingent in particular, can have unique powers that draw on the resonance of the Day realm, but don't directly replicate existing skills or enchantments.

Collectively the heralds of Cold Sun refer to themselves scions, with different groups of heralds having their own name based on their role. They are all highly disciplined however, and absolutely zealous in their pursuit of the eternal's goals. They are clearly individuals but they seem to value their existence less than they value the eradication of life in the mortal realm and are capable of an unsettling degree of self-sacrifice in pursuit of their aims. They don't engage in insults or threats in the way a mortal might; if anything their calm commitment to the total eradication of their foes is one of the most upsetting things about them.

All of the heralds so far encountered appear capable of channelling the power of Cold Sun. Some of them are empowered directly - bearing marks of Cold Sun that enhance their ability to pursue its aims or grants them the ability to deliver blows supported by magical force.

The bulk of Cold Sun's forces in the Empire are made up of heavily armoured soldiers, divided into three classes. The first wield mighty great weapons with which they inflict devastating blows capable of hewing limbs and slicing through light armour, flesh and bone alike. These so-called juggernauts have also been observed channelling the power of Cold Sun into their weapons to shatter shields and weapons although they are clearly only capable of doing so a limited number of times. Winnowers are armed with polearms, and are as skilled as any Marcher when it comes to sending their foes sprawling. These heralds channel the power of the Day realm to hurl enemies away forcing open gaps in enemy lines. The final group are less commonly encountered, these clerists are heavily-armoured archers who serve as the eyes of a Cold Sun force. They try to avoid melee where possible, and can draw on the power of the eternal to hold in place anyone who gets too close. They occasionally dive into a skirmish to offer support to their fellow scions, restoring their ability to fight.

Supporting the warrior-scions are heralds whose focus is on channelling Cold Sun's power more directly. The ardents are armed with shields and rods and wear garb reminiscent of mage armour. Indeed, some of those who have faced them have commented on their superficial similarity to the entities that can be drawn from mana sites by Imperial magicians. They fight using magical force to hurl or impede their foes, and sometimes to freeze them in place, as well as using a fraction of their energy to empower their allies.

Seed of Fire
Scions of Cold Sun may make use of the CURSE call. CURSE does not immediately affect your character; you are aware that you have been cursed but may continue to fight and act normally. You should see a referee for more details once you are able to do so without interrupting your roleplaying (or fighting). Unless the referee indicates otherwise at the start of the skirmish, it's fine to wait until you are heading back through the Sentinel Gate to check in and find out what the results of the curse will be.

A channeler by contrast bears a staff, and uses the energy of Cold Sun in a different manner. They repair and restore their allies, not only healing and purifying their bodies, but also mending their weapons. Indeed, they seem not to differentiate between the two, doing whatever is needed to ensure their fellows are capable of serving the eternal's aims most efficiently. What makes them frightening, and sets them apart somewhat from being mere healers, is their ability to come together in groups and direct the raw power of Cold Sun directly at their enemies. Several times a trio has been observed working together to unleash destructive power that plants a "seed of flame" inside warriors who get too close - flames that blossom into a violent conflagration a short time later leaving only ashes. This seems to be an attack aimed at the will-to-fight of their opponents.

Whatever its makeup, a unit of scions is usually led by an archon - a champion or captain. They often bear a standard marked with symbols of their master, and rather than engaging directly with their enemies they seem empowered to motivate and direct their fellow scions. These archons seem to evidence more diversity and individuality than other servants of Cold Sun, and their abilities are unpredictable. One encountered in Hahnmark demonstrated the ability to restore the health of other scions within a short distance by leading a chant in the name of Cold Sun. Another was able to strike blows that mimicked the malediction created by the channelers with every strike of their great spear.

Whatever the specific capabilities of the scion, they are united by their absolute commitment to bringing Cold Sun's version of perfection to the mortal world. They do not balk at slaughtering any human or orc who comes within reach of their weapons. There are rarely any bodies left behind, however. Some of the scions have been observed calling on the power of Cold Sun whilst near a dying or terminal enemy, and within a few moments their victim simply crumbles to ash. It is assumed that they use a similar ability to destroy the corpses of those who have fallen to them. In large numbers, they seem capable of even more destructive feats using the power of their master to burn, break, and shatter buildings and perhaps even fortifications given enough time.

Further Reading

  • Eclipse - Spring Equinox 386YE wind of war about the second season of campaigns against the heralds of Cold Sun
  • Things that burn - Winter Solstice 385YE wind of war about the first season of campaigns against the heralds of Cold Sun
  • To the last syllable - Autumn Equinox 385YE wind of war detailing the initial invasion
  • Ruin - Summer Solstice 385YE wind of fortune with the first confirmed attacks by heralds of Cold Sun
  • Three and three - Summer Solstice 385YE plenipotentiary response which set the timing for the parley with Cold Sun