[Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Rebuilding the world in the wake of the Great Rain of Fire.

Moderator: Seer of Yhog

[Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Thu Jul 14, 2016 8:53 pm

Now that Issue #12 of Threshold (which has info on the Vampire Queens of Taymora) has been released I can finally start talking about it in public ;) I had a few ideas come up while writing the article, and a few more come up while reviewing it with some of the other editors and proofreaders (Sturm and Robin in particular).

Anyway, one thought revolved around Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood.

Tayma disappears from her people in BC 2510. While some speculate that she was destroyed or imprisoned by her own daughters, the truth may be something quite different. To explore this alternative theory we must first revisit the concept of the Blood Tax, and the Ceremony of Blood.

In the Mystara 2300 BC setting, the Ceremony of Blood is a ritual derived from the draconic Ceremony of Sublimation. The original Ceremony of Sublimation was designed as a way for dragons to increase their own power (perhaps even attaining immortality) by sacrificing a treasure horde and falling into a deep slumber or hibernation (during which time, if the Ceremony was successful, the dragon would grow in both size and power).

In the aftermath of the Great Rain of Fire, many of the peoples of Mystara suffered a dreaded disease called the Wasting, which decimated entire nations and cultures. Few would survive this deadly plague, and those that did often went to great lengths to find protection. The Taymorans developed the Ceremony of Blood. The legendary Taymoran founder-hero Tayma stole the Ceremony of Sublimation from the dragons and with the help of her patroness Immortal Nyx, modified it to save herself and her people from the Wasting.

To perform the Ceremony of Blood, all participants would have to sacrifice a portion of their life force to the ritual (called the Blood Tax in Taymora). This sacrifice of blood would then be channeled through the Taymoran nobility (all nosferatu and vampires) and consumed by the ritual. Everyone who participated in the sacrifice would be protected from the effects of the Wasting throughout the year following the ritual. Thus the Ceremony of Blood would have had to be performed on a yearly basis in order to insure continued protection from the disease. This was a large factor contributing to the longevity of vampiric rule throughout Taymora’s history.

Now let us return to Tayma’s disappearance in BC 2510. What if the Ceremony of Blood ritual that Tayma passed down to her inheritors also had an additional effect… one known only to Tayma? What if the Ceremony of Blood channeled a small portion of the Blood Tax sacrifice and the power it brought, directly into Tayma. Just as a dragon must slumber to process the Ceremony of Sublimation, Tayma would have had to slumber to process the Ceremony of Blood.

If this theory is true, then there could be several repercussions:
  • Tayma would have been gaining power little by little over the lifetime of the Taymoran empire.
  • Each year that the Ceremony of Blood was performed, Tayma would have become more and more powerful.
  • At some point in time (after accumulating enough power) Tayma may have attained Immortality.

Just as the Radiance gives an edge to the Immortals of Energy, so too Tayma’s (and Nyx’s) Ceremony of Blood may have given an edge to the Immortals of Entropy. It might be that the sinking of Taymora was instigated as a coup against the Immortals of Entropy, as a means of stopping them from producing extra immortals “the easy way.”

If so, Tayma may still be waiting in her slumber. She may be on the very verge of attaining immortality (or failing that, at least titan level status). Should the Ceremony of Blood ever be re-established, Tayma may begin to stir from her long slumber.
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Sturm » Thu Jul 14, 2016 9:50 pm

Well if Nyx and Tayma planned to do this, other entropic Immortals, especially Thanatos if he is the patron of Night dragons, would stop at nothing to steal the secret.
Orcus became an Immortal shortly after the end of Taymora according to the Codex Immortalis by Marco Dalmonte (don't know if that's in canon somewhere) and he maybe was the one who tried to steal the secret.
The contest may still be open :-)
User avatar
Sturm
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 3278
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:26 pm
Location: Genoa, Italy

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Thu Jul 14, 2016 11:21 pm

Sturm wrote:Well if Nyx and Tayma planned to do this, other entropic Immortals, especially Thanatos if he is the patron of Night dragons, would stop at nothing to steal the secret.

And Thanatos (and his night dragons) were the "original" owners of this arcane knowledge, which Nyx and her follower Tayma stole for their own purposes. It's possible that the night dragons were already on a special path to attaining entropic immortality (in much the same way that mortal dragons can). If that's the case Thanatos may have had good reason to stop Nyx. IMC this is one of the reasons that Thanatos and Nyx have problems with each other (eventually spurring their respective followers to civil war in Taymora).

Sturm wrote:Orcus became an Immortal shortly after the end of Taymora according to the Codex Immortalis by Marco Dalmonte (don't know if that's in canon somewhere) and he maybe was the one who tried to steal the secret.
The contest may still be open :-)

This is another interesting idea :twisted: Perhaps the, then mortal, Orcus was able to siphon power away from Tayma and use it for his own bid for immortality. His ascension would have left Tayma weak, and possibly prolonged her slumber for several centuries/millennia. That could mean that other Entropic hopefuls could try to do the same - essentially using Tayma as a mystical engine (in the same way that Brothers of Rad use the NoS) in order to power their own attempt at immortality.
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Sturm » Fri Jul 15, 2016 9:37 am

Indeed the idea that Orcus stole Immortality from Tayma would explain perfectly why he is Immortal and she is not yet :)

Marco Dalmonte Codex Immortalis on page 182 here: http://pandius.com/Codex1e.pdf contains the Ascension dates of Immortals. Looking at them I thought the rise of an Immortal should mean great upheaval and changes in the world... not necessarily wars but something big should happen.
Tayma's ascension could well mean something big in the Sea of Dread (and I could also link it with the plans of the Church of Nyx in Koskatep :)
User avatar
Sturm
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 3278
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:26 pm
Location: Genoa, Italy

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:05 am

Sturm wrote:Tayma's ascension could well mean something big in the Sea of Dread (and I could also link it with the plans of the Church of Nyx in Koskatep :)

I've been musing over this possibility for a while too as well ;)

One thing to note is the location labeled "Tayma's Rest" on the map of Taymora, BC 2300 is actually in the same location as Stronghold on Fortress Island. I've always had it planned that Tayma could be found resting there, buried somewhere deep and secure.

I've also started wondering about Lord Keiros and the Last One, and their relationship to the Vampire Queens of this era (BC 2300). Lord Keiros is mentioned as a Tal nosferatu which leads me to believe that he is at the very least probably a descendant of one of the ancient Taymoran lines of vampirism. The mention of him being a Tal suggests that he wasn't "created" until sometime after the fall of Taymora, which if true suggests that he probably wasn't around during that nation's heyday. He however see himself as the last true inheritor of Taymora's legacy, and may even be able to trace his vampiric lineage back to one of the great queens (and ultimately through them, to Tayma herself).

The Last One, being a servant of Thanatos, was clearly on the opposite side of the Taymoran civil war than Tayma's daughters (if indeed he was around back in those times). It sounds like he could be much older than Lord Keiros, and may have even been around during the height of Taymora. Not sure what kind of history you have planned for him, but I'd love to hear it (if you're ready to share).

Either of those two individuals could know about Tayma and her sleep, and be plotting to use her power to their own advantage.
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Sturm » Mon Jul 18, 2016 10:35 am

Lord Keiros and The Last One history and relationship were already detailed in Threshold issue 9:
The Last One's original name was Leukos, and he was supposed to be a nosferatu and follower of Nyx, friends of Keiros.
In my original History of Traladara (http://pandius.com/tralhist.html) I imagined that the region was divided between followers of Nyx and Thanatos when the Traldars arrived. Their arrival allowed the nosferatu followers of Nyx to prevail for some years (1484-1451 BC) until the reign of Tarku Radu (1451-1430 BC). Tarku was a nosferatu who turned to Thanatos and was eventually destroyed by a crusade sponsored also by Nithians and Dwarves and overseen by the Hutaakans.
Tarku dying curse sent 5 years of winter to Traladara.
Shortly after the Traldar reacted to this by promoting a two years crusade (1423-1421 BC) to exterminate all undead. The distinction between followers of Nyx and Thanatos was ignored.
Lord Keiros made a secret deal with the crusaders (leave us alone and we will pretend we do not exist) to save his city of Ieronyx, but Leukos was disgusted by which he considered a cowardly action and decided to fight.
Leukos' band however was destroyed in 1421 BC, and he saved himself asking for Thanatos' help.
The dark god obliged and in 1415 BC The Death Hand appeared in Traladara, a group of five powerful vampires, including Leukos.
This also caused indirectly the fall of Ieronyx, taken by the hutaakans in 1412 BC, even if Lord Keiros was not allied with The Death Hand.
The Death Hand spread terror and death until, in 1411 BC, they were destroyed by a priestess of Ixion and her companions.
Their final curse sent 10 years more of winter to Traladara.
This prompted a more massive intervention of the Hutaakans in 1401 BC, who took control of the nation to save Traladara from starvation.
Leukos, now The Last One (of the Death Hand), survived hidden in the Dark Wood at the center of the Vorloi Peninsula, where the secret hideout of the Death Hand was.
He more or less remained there until he conquered Koskatep in 227 AC (helped by Elienor of the Dark Fairies).

So I've not written anything about the life of Keiros and Leukos before they created Ieronyx in 1597 BC. They were already nosferatu at the time so they could well be from the last times of Taymora, but Leukos was not intended to be older than Keiros, they should be of similar age, maybe even childhood friends in the remote past.
User avatar
Sturm
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 3278
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:26 pm
Location: Genoa, Italy

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby stanles » Sat Jul 30, 2016 9:04 pm

Chimpman wrote:
Sturm wrote:Orcus became an Immortal shortly after the end of Taymora according to the Codex Immortalis by Marco Dalmonte (don't know if that's in canon somewhere) and he maybe was the one who tried to steal the secret.
The contest may still be open :-)

This is another interesting idea :twisted: Perhaps the, then mortal, Orcus was able to siphon power away from Tayma and use it for his own bid for immortality. His ascension would have left Tayma weak, and possibly prolonged her slumber for several centuries/millennia. That could mean that other Entropic hopefuls could try to do the same - essentially using Tayma as a mystical engine (in the same way that Brothers of Rad use the NoS) in order to power their own attempt at immortality.


I compiled the information on when the various immortals achieved immortality and then subdivided it on these pages on the Vaults: here is Orcus http://pandius.com/immmisc2.html#orcus

To explain, the WotI description of Orcus (page 31) says that mortal Orcus was a devil swine from Traldara and according the Night Howlers (page 5) Devil Swine first appeared in Alphatia in 623 AC. As the description of Orcus says that he was a mortal in "long-ago Traldara" it is probably closer to earlier in the available time period rather than later. That doesn't mean that he didn't siphon power away from Tayma and use it for his own bid for immortality, but if so then he wasn't the first.

Of course, you could also just go with him not being a Traladaran devil swine in his mortal life and then everything is open.
Visit the Vaults of Pandius http://pandius.com, the official website for the Dungeons and Dragons setting of Mystara.

Submissions to the Vaults can be made directly to webmaster@pandius.com
User avatar
stanles
Troll
 
Posts: 392
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2008 2:22 am

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Thu Aug 04, 2016 6:16 pm

Thanks stanles!
stanles wrote:I compiled the information on when the various immortals achieved immortality and then subdivided it on these pages on the Vaults: here is Orcus http://pandius.com/immmisc2.html#orcus

To explain, the WotI description of Orcus (page 31) says that mortal Orcus was a devil swine from Traldara and according the Night Howlers (page 5) Devil Swine first appeared in Alphatia in 623 AC. As the description of Orcus says that he was a mortal in "long-ago Traldara" it is probably closer to earlier in the available time period rather than later. That doesn't mean that he didn't siphon power away from Tayma and use it for his own bid for immortality, but if so then he wasn't the first.


I always forget that in Mystara, Orcus is a rather young Immortal. I suppose the long period in between the last real Taymoran Ceremony, and the possible Ceremony performed by Orcus could be explained in a number of different ways.

- As you say, it is possible that others were able to siphon off energy from Tayma before Orcus came along. In this case he may have had to build her energy reserves back up again before using them for himself (a potentially dangerous game, given that if he funnels too much energy through her before siphoning it off for himself, she could have attained immortality instead of him).

- It's also possible that the last Taymoran Ceremony performed left Tayma just short enough energy to attain Immortality, and she stayed in that state for millennia (and might have remained so indefinitely). The Orcus comes along (whenever he does), and takes what he can from her. Without new Taymoran Ceremonies being performed, Tayma's power reserve wouldn't increase (and none of those would be performed anytime after BC 1700 - probably...)

Of course others may have been using her power as well. We had some discussion of Synn and her ilk over in the main forum, and one possibility we talked about was night dragons using the power of sacrifice either to grow their own power, or create new night dragons.

Yet another possibility might be that no one has tapped into Tayma's power, and she is still on the verge of attaining Immortality. Maybe all it will take is one more massive blood ritual to do the trick ;)
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Havard » Thu Aug 04, 2016 6:38 pm

The way I usually deal with Immortals being relatively young is that there was another Orcus before this one. Perhaps simply known as The Goat. Or the Black Prince? :)

-Havard

The Comeback Inn - My Blackmoor Forum
The Blackmoor Blog
My Articles at the Vaults of Pandius
Moderator of the Mystara, Blackmoor and Thunder Rift forums.
My moderator voice is
GREEN.
User avatar
Havard
Dragon Turtle
 
Posts: 16401
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 7:32 pm
Location: Norway

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Thu Aug 04, 2016 6:43 pm

Sturm wrote:<snip>
...

So I've not written anything about the life of Keiros and Leukos before they created Ieronyx in 1597 BC. They were already nosferatu at the time so they could well be from the last times of Taymora, but Leukos was not intended to be older than Keiros, they should be of similar age, maybe even childhood friends in the remote past.

I like the history you've written for them. We have lots of time to play with, so I don't necessarily think that everything should be tied back to the Taymoran Age. It's nice to have a bit of variety anyway.

One thing that I guess I hadn't comprehended before was that the two were contemporaries... and even friends. I like that aspect a lot, it brings a much more personal level to their power struggle. What would have caused them to split ways I wonder?
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Sturm » Mon Aug 08, 2016 9:43 am

I wrote their history above: viewtopic.php?f=63&t=16106&p=181879#p181011
Basically Leukos was disgusted by the deal Keiros made with the anti-undead Traldar crusade (a deal which was useless in the end) and turned to Thanatos to avoid his final death.
User avatar
Sturm
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 3278
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:26 pm
Location: Genoa, Italy

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby ripvanwormer » Wed Sep 21, 2016 8:19 pm

Havard wrote:The way I usually deal with Immortals being relatively young is that there was another Orcus before this one. Perhaps simply known as The Goat. Or the Black Prince? :)

-Havard


Is there a consensus about how Orcus relates to the demon Bielgorna from Bruce Heard's "Goatmen of Kavaja?" He's thousands of years old and he looks exactly like Orcus, but he's currently imprisoned.
ripvanwormer
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 2813
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:14 pm

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Havard » Wed Sep 21, 2016 8:59 pm

ripvanwormer wrote:
Havard wrote:The way I usually deal with Immortals being relatively young is that there was another Orcus before this one. Perhaps simply known as The Goat. Or the Black Prince? :)

-Havard


Is there a consensus about how Orcus relates to the demon Bielgorna from Bruce Heard's "Goatmen of Kavaja?" He's thousands of years old and he looks exactly like Orcus, but he's currently imprisoned.


Thanks for bringing this up! I had almost forgotten about that part of the Kavaja article. I do not recall seeing any discussion on the nature of the demons of the Kavaja or their strange ability to bind such entities. I agree that this is something that could very well be brought into the topic of this thread.

-Havard

The Comeback Inn - My Blackmoor Forum
The Blackmoor Blog
My Articles at the Vaults of Pandius
Moderator of the Mystara, Blackmoor and Thunder Rift forums.
My moderator voice is
GREEN.
User avatar
Havard
Dragon Turtle
 
Posts: 16401
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 7:32 pm
Location: Norway

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby ripvanwormer » Wed Sep 21, 2016 9:35 pm

Havard wrote:Thanks for bringing this up! I had almost forgotten about that part of the Kavaja article. I do not recall seeing any discussion on the nature of the demons of the Kavaja or their strange ability to bind such entities. I agree that this is something that could very well be brought into the topic of this thread.

-Havard


There's a lot more information on Bruce Heard's blog than on the Vaults of Pandius, including stats for Bielgorna. I was thinking that perhaps it was Bielgorna who stole power from Tayma using the ceremony of blood, and Orcus in turn stole power from Bielgorna using the same means many centuries later.
ripvanwormer
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 2813
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:14 pm

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby Chimpman » Wed Sep 21, 2016 9:51 pm

Ohh... now that's a story I could get behind. :twisted: <Nice find rip!>

Funnily enough when I was writing up the Shimmering Lands I had wanted to use Orcus as "The Black Prince" but after doing more research was a little disheartened to discover that Orcus would not have been around during that period. Using Bielgorna as a precursor could be a really nice way to solve this problem (and I may in fact want to go back and revisit some of that material as well).

Do you have links to the relevant posts on Bruce's blog? I found the articles in the Vaults easily enough, but it might take me some time to track the rest of this stuff down.
Visit the Exiles Campaign Setting (a Mystara / Spelljammer crossover)
Visit Mystara 2300 BC

Moderator of The Tabard Inn and Blackmoor. My moderator voice is purple.
User avatar
Chimpman
Hadozee
 
Posts: 7312
Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 6:52 pm
Location: USA, California

Re: [Taymora] Tayma and the Ceremony of Blood

Postby ripvanwormer » Wed Sep 21, 2016 10:04 pm

Chimpman wrote:Do you have links to the relevant posts on Bruce's blog? I found the articles in the Vaults easily enough, but it might take me some time to track the rest of this stuff down.


Here: http://bruce-heard.blogspot.com/2012/05 ... avaja.html

There’s a link to a pdf file at the bottom.
ripvanwormer
Black Dragon
 
Posts: 2813
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:14 pm


Return to 2300 BC

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest