The Secrecy of Sages
The Enclave > Known Roads > Three Stones > Local Color

There was a time, not so very many years ago, when sages of the Black Tower walked openly about the paved streets of the City Within. They orated in the Court of Three Stones, debated in Lord Verden's private park, and declaimed from the raised platform at the center of the Great Way, where wealthy merchants now sell their wares. It was not unusual in those seasons to see robed sages arguing points of philosophy with priests of the Seeking Vessel on the grand Library steps, or for noble gatherings to be enlightened by a reading of the latest treatise from the white-bearded thinkers of the Black Tower.

Tales are still told of commonfolk and traders who crossed the Black Tower in those seasons gone by; The Refutation of Othel's Greed is a favorite with troubadors throughout the Enclave, and a statue in the manse of Lord Verden recalls the supposed fate of ten rude Talmur retainers. The subtle wizardry of Ammander sages is known, respected and feared, whether or not those within the Black Tower make use of their talents.

A generation ago, in the wake of the terrible Year of Winter and the victory of the Emerald Company over Trespassers from the Farthest, Guard spears patrolling the Great Way at first light found the body of The Awl. An old, bearded sage of character and tradition, The Awl had been favored by priests and nobles alike. His words were respected and his presence in demand; as for all the Black Tower sages, however, little had been seen of him while Farthest Winter failed to give way to warmer seasons. Shortly thereafter, while the rivers still ran high with meltwater, The Locked Heart left the Black Tower for Port, and The Furrow for Mirael. Other, lesser sages departed or vanished before the following winter; those who remained no longer walked the streets of Three Stones, nor came forth to orate on philosophy and the nature of Creation.

So it has been from then until the present day; scribes and servants carry forth treatises, declaim before nobles and search the gloomy shelves of the Library, but the old whitebeards of the Black Tower remain within - as do their secrets.

[ Posted by Reason on May 22, 2005 ]