The Sea of Shadows
The Great Library
The Great Library is a godless place – in the truest sense of the word.
Acolytes from anywhere in the world are accepted, provided that they show enough magic potential. It does not even matter where this magic power emanates from. Here they come to study the weave and to master their powers. Many have come to learn from the Master Librarians, but the condition is that they leave their previous allegiances at the door. Only when they have passed their training and learnt enough can they return to the wider world and pick them back up again.
The Librarians who emerge are always impeccably versed in magic and in the ways of the cultures around the land. They are expected to return at least once a year to bring back new knowledge, and the truly dedicated will be in constant communication with the Master Librarians. When they do return once per year, they are expected to tithe one tenth of their power to maintain the magical defenses and magical library of the Great Library. There are three Master librarians at any given time – The Master of Air, The Master of Shadows and the Keeper of the Keys. They wield the combined tithed magic of the ages, and every 11 years a new Master Librarian is chosen to become the Primary – the Leader of the Library. This is done on a rotating schedule, with the Librarian who steps down retiring from office and donating the remainder of his power and his life to the Library
The Erran empire badly desires the knowledge stored in the library, and every few dozen years sends an agent to attempt and infiltration. Up until now, everyone has been sent back to Imperial Erran in some kind of humiliating and terrifying way, in order to display the might of the Great Library. The librarians that emerge from the library wear upon their arms tattoos that denote their rank in simple bars
. A first level librarian is a relatively common sight (as far as seeing a librarian can be seen as common), as is a second level.
However a third level librarian is a rarity, and to see a fourth or above would be a tale that a commoner would tell forever, much to the delight of his children and grandchildren. No one knows how high the orders go, so many assume no higher than five. The Librarians know differently.