The Abyssal Order Organization in The Garden that Burned | World Anvil

The Abyssal Order

Not much is known about the Abyssal Order considering the fact that they prefer to stalk in the shadows. The only information known is what was shared by an elderly man by the name of Duncun Helx in the form of a scroll titled, "Omissions of the Ominous," In which he describes his life studies of trying to define the logic and loyalty behind the Advocates while traveling and living along side them. Duncun was a philosopher living in the late 5000's TN who traveled Birtham and studied the psychology behind different religions and what effects the worship of these religions had on their devout. On many accounts he went into detail of how his life was endangered on a daily basis. It wasnt until he began to actively participate in their rituals that he finally started to understand why it was they acted as they did.

A Philosophers Study

Duncun defines the Advocates in his early passages as savages, however, as the scroll continues he begins to sympathize and eventually even covet the Abyssal Order, stating that;
"Though collectively the Advocates are a brutal people, the methods behind their maddening acts of faith signify the true devotion they project onto Absolum. No matter the path chosen, each Advocate has readily resigned themselves to their fate as ultimately every one of them will give themselves in their entirety, to their god."
-Duncun Helx
He also goes into full detail about his sudden experience of frequent paranoia regarding his own shadow, and how it had become common for any non-Advocate travelling with them, be they a defector, slave, or prisoner, to exhibit an acute fear of their own shadow as well. In some cases Duncun theorized that missing slaves or Advocates had finally succumbed to their shadows, called to the Abyss by Absolum to serve at his side.

A Philosophers Fate

Unfortunately near the end of the scroll, Duncun's grip on sanity appeared to be slipping. His passages became nothing but jumbled phrases and statements, the final coherent entry being his explaination of the moment he laid his eyes upon Absolum himself. Recounting how being in Absolums presence began to eat at his conscience, bringing a cold and somber drought of emotions that put him eerily at ease as his mind began to slip. To modern day philosophers it's become apparent that he was consciously aware of his decline into madness, yet no longer found comfort in the security of a stable mind.
A rough translation of Duncuns final entry stated how Absolum is a lover of all that is wrong within us, and how he feeds on any degree of negativity, favoring only his foulest of followers.

Public Agenda

Their goals are simple, and one of the few things the Advocates keep out of the shadows. Thier agenda involves the destruction of all that is light, and the unwavering worship of their abyssal overlord, Absolum.

Mythology & Lore

His Start

It is believed that Absolum had existed since the first forming of stars, when light and darkness first touched. He ported between the Abyss and the midplane for centuries wandering the cosmos and occasionally battling with Lumina until a burst of power divine like his own, drew him to Eden. He collaborated in Edens early years with the unnamed god to leash the unholiest of beasts, Echidna, and set it upon Odeasus. A large galleon designed like a water chariot was leashed to the mother of monsters by golden chains so bright that staring could cost you your vision, and like a Tortape in a pottery shop, they laid siege to Odeasus. It was only after their king Midas Tiyrn the second, turned the chains which leashed the beast to gold, that she was freed and fled into the seas. With no mount to tether to their massive chariot, the gods retreated as their objective had already been completed.

 

His Deal

Absolum was indirectly involved in the Templars reckoning, when he commanded his loyal puppet-king to assist in the destruction of Geodeas templars. This is said to have been done out of sheer enjoyment, however, Lucifer had actually made a deal with Absolum in order to gain his assistance. This information was only discovered when the Guardian Balthazaar overheard the two gods boasting.

 

His Mark

A permanent stain was left on Edens grounds, marked as only a footprint of Absolums might. During the War of Gods he arrived and struck terror into the hearts of the Allied Mortal Forces with nothing but his presence.
And so, Absolum arose from the Mouth. Seething out, he slithered in silence. Implying only that we bare witness, as the darkness devoured our fears before us. During the brightest of dawns darkness reined over Lagomous, and to this day it has so remained.
Though now he has left us, still his shadow suppresses the light. A static darkness in day, and yet of night.
Our entry granted us freedom from the weight of sanity, assisting in forbearing our fears...
Thus Instilling in mortality the resolution to stand against the most severe.
- Omissions of the Ominous. Written by Duncun Helx.
The above passage was found carved into the stone on the lip of the Devils mouth at the north east edge, this describes members of the Allied Mortal Alliance bearing witness to Absolum, god of darkness slaying Felvar, the god of fear. They say that Absolum was seen consuming him as they fell back into the darkness of the massive canyon. To this day the entire north east edge of the Devils Mouth is coated in a magical darkness none know how to dispel.

Divine Origins

The Abyssal Order originated in the early 1700's BN, when a large group of criminal dwarves from Wulfguar were caught on route to Calioul and sentenced to death upon the Winking moons blink. Every night for that month Absolum appeared to each dwarf in individual cells and offered them not only salvation, but unimaginable power in the afterlife as shadows of the Abyss. The catch was that every dwarf was expected to agree, or none would be allowed to escape with him. The dwarves being a fairly stubborn people argued over this for awhile before (as they were criminals, mind you) the dwarves that accepted Absolums offer devised a way to kill off those who disagreed out of desperation. This pleased Absolum as he feeds from negative energies, this includes negative emotions.
He left them in fear until the dusk before their execution in which Absolum walked right into the barracks and released them all while puppeting the body of a respected guard through his shadow. They fled through the crypts and in the dark of night his new Abyssal Advocates swore off their old goddess Anandres, and began to revere Absolum as their savoir. For centuries Absolum continued this trend of recruiting desperate criminals and slaves of all races as his devout. They were his favorites, as they were always willing to give more when they had nothing left but their life to lose.

Cosmological Views

There is documentation of Absolum explaining how he perceived the beginning of the universe to be nothing, and then a bright light mixed with darkness. He told the Advocates that the universe was created by nothing and everything all at once, and that its nothing but a never ending dispute between balancing forces in a struggle to maintain stability.
His Advocates took this as gospel truth and have designated the origins of everything to be that same cosmic explosion, choosing to believe that all that ever is and will be was already created at that instance in time.

Tenets of Faith

All that is known of their tenets are as follows;
We Inhale the dusk,
whilst we suffocate the light,
We denounce all others,
as it is within negativity we thrive.
Nothing lies outside the shadows reach

Ethics

The Advocates believe that the universe is governed by balancing forces doomed to oppress each other until the end of time. Their goal is to destroy all positive sources so that only one half remains, and the world can finally continue to move forward as it was meant to, in darkness. Or, in short;
"To destroy one, that the other may thrive."

Worship

Everyday Worship

  • Each morning the Advocates will go outdoors and turn away from the sun, facing and praying to Absolum through their shadow. They typically pray for the cover of night under the glare of Son, but this can vary from disciple to disciple. The untimely and brutal death of an enemy is also a popular prayer.

  • It is customary for any member of the Abyssal Order who saw a relic, symbol, or artifact of another god, to either steal them to offer to Absolum or desecrate them in some obscene manner the moment night strikes

  • All advocates intentionally shift their circadian rhythm so that they classify as nocturnal and can function at full efficiency during the night, as this is when their god is known to ask favors of them.

  • Each Advocate carrys a dark flower in a frosted jar which, if needed is to be destroyed. This will cast a large radius of darkness for a set amount of time, giving the Abyssal Advocate the upper hand in combat or espionage related scenarios.

  • Advocates train hard daily from the moment they first pray to Absolum in order to master as many forms of Elemancy as possible so they may one day wield the forces of darkness, warping it to achieve their own desires. Only the Advocates are aware of how to do this and their technique is not easily aquired from them.

  • Daily a small group of Advocates will travel from Lagomous and attempt to put the surrounding natives in distress so that Absolum may approach them in their hour of need and recruit them to the Abyssal Order.

Rituals & Traditions

Too little is known of the Abyssal Order to present a comprehensive list of their practices, however, it is known that when an Advocate fears being killed, their one final option is to turn and purposefully jump into their own shadow while whispering, "All sin is unseen." Doing this will forfeit their physical form while keeping their soul and consciousness intact. If they chose to do this there was no way to return to their physical form, as it was offered to Absolum in exchange for the safety of their immortal soul. They then become one of Absolums shadows, forever stealing Edens secrets for their Abyssal overlord.

Priesthood

There are only three ranks of faith within the Abyssal Orders hierarchy, as the entire religion was governed by a kratocratic rule. The Abyssal Order are a cutthroat order in which only he who is strongest may stand within the cool embrace of Absolum, cloaked in his darkness. The disciples of Absolum have no bias to killing people outside, or within their religion for any sort of individual gains and are known to be warped by vast delusions of grandeur. Their ranking system was as follows;

 

 

Granted Divine Powers

Gifts of the Dark God

When chosen by Absolum, his devout were first gifted immortality. This is due to the limited lifespan of most mortals and Absolums wish to have their souls fully ripen before they become a part of him. What little else is known of the Abyssal Orders gifts is as stated below;

Advocates Advocates are gifted with the ability to shroud themselves in darkness, even during day. They also have the ability smell fear, using this skill to track down most of their enemies.
Receivers These lucky men and women were the few who surpassed Absolums expectations not only having every ability the average Advocate would have, but they are also gifted with magical body modifications (usually) stemming from something that originated either in the Abyss, or from Einghasts graveyard. These modifications cannot be described, as results varied.
Saints The Saints of the Abyssal Order can do anything an Advocate or Receiver can do, but better. This includes the ability to pass through cracks and around objects in a temporary shadow form. They are also able to manipulate the fears of their opponents, summon mass magical darkness, travel between realms, and have their physical form survive in the Abyss with no negative impact. No one knows for sure if there are other abilities his Saints possessed, as none were demonstrated before Absolum fell, and the actions of the Advocates became less and less public as time passed.  

His Favored Few

The most blessed of Absolums devout were gifted an immortality with their shadow forms intact, and titled as Absolums Saints. Only a few of them were recorded on paper but many are rumored to have existed, the few documented and their divine blessings are as follows;

Drezven Kelt - Originally human, Drezven climbed through the ranks with ease, showing his loyalty to Absolum by killing his father who was renown as a hero. He's the one who was able to find Einghast for Absolum after he disappeared, and also the man who personally assisted during the massacre of the Templars reckoning. Now, he exists as only a semblance of what he once was, sacrificing his humanity for the ability to use his magically modified body as a closed dimensional space where he stores the sorrowful souls he's stolen.
Mykana Cruz - A goblin who battled with Anandres and not only lived, but was gifted a dagger she had referred to as her "toothpick". Mykana used Anandres toothpick, a dagger with the ability to duplicate, to murder Saint Anne Bastiel, a Geodian Saint known to symbolize fertility, in hopes that drinking her blood would grant her the ability to bear children. I did not. It did, however, gain her Absolums favor.
Aalen Beltem - An Aireai soldier who was sentenced to death during Myirxs reign of Terran. He was approached by Absolums shadow and was helped to escape once his soul had been signed away. He used his newfound power to gain enough intel to allow him to assassinate Aeros royal advisor so he could talk his way into the position. He served loyally as Absolums political pawn for 40 years, until his association with the Abyssal Advocates was discovered and he was forced to flee. Upon leaving he summoned such a massive wind that it almost tipped the floating continent sideways, forcing the kingdoms guard to focus on saving their country instead of their kin. Nearly 140 casualties were reported. During Aalens escape he manage to kidnap two children of noble blood, one of which he sacrificed to Absolum, and the other he raised as his pet.
Gunthur Hemguar - One hell of a Dwarf, Gunthur was able to forge and enchant the Chains of Adornment, an artifact known to be powerful enough to subjugate even the Mother of Monsters. In addition, he tricked a Dragon into the Abyss using nothing but his wits and a Dark flower in order to slay it and gift its corpse to Absolum to wear. Unfortunately his plan was foiled by Myamya, who accelerated the necrotic stages of the dragons decomposition, rendering the corpse unable to house a soul.
Annasandra Whit - Annasandra is a human runemancer who joined the Abyssal order out of desperation, but was incredibly gifted in the practice of psychological torture. She conquered many enemies of Absolum in his name to gain his favor and did so for several years before finding a way to loosen the dark gods grip on her soul. To this day she is known as the only person to leave Absolums Abyssal Order and survive. This is due to her tactful thinking and tendency to be prepared. Annasandra Whit is the only reason the knowledge presented is publicly available.

In the absence of light, all sin is unseen.

Founding Date
Unknown
Type
Religious, Cult
Capital
Alternative Names
Abyssal advocate(s), Shadow slavers
Demonym
Abyssal Advocate(s)
Leader
Head of Government
Government System
Kratocracy
Economic System
Mixed economy
Currency
Silver < Gold < Kye
In most cases their currencies are traditional, however the Abyssal Order is a heavily slave reliant religion and as a result they would often settle with trading owned slaves amongst one another.
Deities
Controlled Territories
Notable Members
Related Myths

Non-aggression pact

These two organizations considerer themselves to be on neutral terms until a time comes where it benefits either party to be anything otherwise.

Hostile

Members of the Abyssal Order take personal joy in tormenting the pacefists of the Eternal Flame. Unable to defend themselves due to their faith, Priesnt of the Eternal Flame must send fire into the skies in order to call for help. Abyssal Order members prevent this from happening as best they can so they can take their time with the helpless Priests

Immediately hostile

The Abyssal order loves Geodians, specifically making them scream. What's worse is that the Abyssal advocates take great joy in finding ways to stop Geodians from reaching Heaven after death. One such example is the fact that no Geodian who has eaten the flesh of another man may pass through Heavens gates, so the Advocates made a game out of capturing and force-feeding the Geodian priests to each other.
  The Geodians on the other hand, both hate and feared the Advocates, calling them a "celebrated cult."

At odds

These two organizations considerer themselves to be on neutral terms until a time comes where it benefits either party to be otherwise.

Hostile

These two organizations considerer themselves to be on neutral terms until a time comes where it benefits either party to be otherwise.

Tension between Absolum and the Deorum Pantheon has been lingering for millennia and his Abyssal Order sees things no differently, choosing to desecrate idols and symbols of foreign deities as a testament to their unwavering faith to him, and their utmost disrespect towards them.


Cover image: by KELLEPICS - Stefan Keller

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