Nightgrasp Cathedral Building / Landmark in Ménicéa | World Anvil

Nightgrasp Cathedral

I am Low, so going inside the Cathedral never even came to my mind, but I do know a few things about it. Whether we're High or Low, we all receive a fundamental education about our people's history and customs. What I can tell you is that even most Highs aren't allowed inside. This is where the ritual takes place, and each time, only the concerned persons get to enter the building.
  The Nightgrasp Cathedral was built shortly after Grishnak was corrupted and what was left of the Morknar civilization had to settle on Hope's end. It is a massive, mysterious building which main areas' access is forbidden to even most of the highest members of the Morknars society.   According to testimonies and old books, Nightgrasp was built using the same plans as Daygrasp, the former Cathedral that now lies at the epicenter of the Dark Flood.  

Center of science

High-Morknars are eternal seekers of knowledge and want to solve every mystery that nature and magic have to offer. While researches on the former are often done directly in the field, the latter requires specific tools and conditions that can be hard to find. Due to the invaluable importance of their memory, every Keeper of the Great Library has to spend their whole life within the walls of the Spire of science's domain, which includes the Cathedral. For that reason, Morknars' Cathedrals always had the best research gear in the world.   Aside from the material aspect of magic research, Morknars are very discreet when it comes to arcane. Most of what happens inside the main wings of the Cathedral is unknown, as it was already the case before Grishnak's corruption. The Dark Flood is, in fact, a previous experiment within Daygrasp that escaped Morknars' control.   What people know is that the ritual that allows Morknars to pass on their runic libraries can only be held there. Nobody knows precisely why it cannot be held somewhere else or what happens during the ceremony.  
I am speechless. I thought that I saw the largest building dedicated to knowledge in the world when I went to Bristanaq's university, but it does not even compare to the Nightgrasp Cathedral.   I knew Morknars were devoted to science and magic, but that is beyond what I imagined. This building is enormous. What can possibly happen during their so-called rituals to justify such infrastructures?
— Dinio Glen Renta, Géroun explorer.


While Morknars used Daygrasp's plans to build Nightgrasp, they still had to make some adjustments due to the terrain.   The Cathedral is built next to the Spire of science; the two buildings are linked by a few corridors. Every access is heavily guarded, day and night.   The structure has five wings. The central tower is the largest of them as it is where the library-transmitting ritual happens. Two of the four remaining sides are large magic laboratories, where only members of the council are allowed. The last two areas are dedicated to religion, where High-Morknars living in the city can come to pray. Low-Morknars are strictly forbidden to enter.  

The Ritual


Whenever the ritual takes place, the whole city knows it. The Cathedral rings its bells five times in a row: the signal for all High-Morknars and council members to leave the place.   Then, the two persons about to attend the ceremony arrive in traditional clothing. They are welcomed by the Keeper at the entrance of the Cathedral, and all the guards also leave the inside of the building and stand in front of the door after closing it.   What happens afterward is a complete mystery, as none of the previous participants ever talked about it.   Still, no ritual has ever lasted more than three hours. When it is done, the participants leave from the front door, the bells ring another five times, and people can go back in.

Morknar's secret

While no one knows what the ritual is and how it is done, everyone knows what its purpose is.   Morknars are the only species known to be able to "transmit" their runes library to someone else. Libraries are memories of spells that compose a rune. Having these memories means being able to reproduce the runes in question like they were our own.   The most significant part of Morknars' military strength comes from this ability. Unlike the other species whose runes are "young" and simple, Morknars have been improving theirs from generation to generation.   Among the High-Morknars, the Keeper of the Great Library is the one to be feared. They possess the memory and apparel of each and every one of their predecessors, making them a potentially omnipotent mage with the largest existing spells variety in the world.
Cathedral / Great temple
Parent Location
Spire of science
Located in
Construction date
48-124 ( Menicean Calendar )
High-Morknar Council

Kestar Skril Geree

  Keeper of the great Morknar library, Kestar is also the current leader of the Morknars realm, and one of the brightest minds in the world. In their mind lie generations and generations of knowledge, powerful spells, and runes.   They nearly never leave the Spire of science in Grishnak, which is considered to be one of the safest places in the world.
You want to know why no one ever talked about the ritual? It's simple, they can't remember it. Whatever this magic is, it is a very high-level one, at least from the second layer.   Did any thief try to break in? I guess not, or they would be extremely stupid. This place isn't called the safest in the world for nothing. Just have a look at the guards' staffs. Each little carving is a rune ready to be used.


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3 Jul, 2019 18:22

Welp, the good news is eveyrone who goes into the ritual leaves, so we know that the birds aren't doing blood sacrifices... probably.

Psstt... Hey you... Wanna read some of that Ethnisy Summer Camp goodness? Hit up my worldbuilding in the Ethnis Universe!
The Starred articles are my favorites!
3 Jul, 2019 18:23

I enjoy the balance between everyone in town thinking they know what the Cathedral does versus what it is actually there for. Giving it some flair of alerting the town was a great touch to keep it slightly mysterious but over time becoming a familiar part of the life of the nearby townsfolk.