The founding of Tyr's Veiled Alliance

The terrifically good story of its founding, that of the templar Daclamitus and the sorceress Averil, ends on page 93 of Veiled Alliance.

Hrr, where’s the rest? The part where they found the Alliance, teach secrecy and requital until Kalak dispels the alignment-changing magic affecting Daclamitus, and the Alliance and his lover have to follow-through with requital on him.

This is driving me nuts.

Google my friend, google! :sunglasses:

Here is the ORIGINAL story from Dragon Mag. It’s been an little altered thereafter for the supplement Veiled Alliance.

Water and Ashes

by Allen Varney

THE INITIATE: These pages merit strictest secrecy. Any beyond the Veil who read or capture them must suffer requital at once.

The manuscript appears quite recent. Most students among the Alliances

of Athas date it no earlier than the Year of Priest’s Fury.

Nonetheless , its melodramatic summary of the society’s origin has

already spread to all chapters throughout the region. The document

has become the standard first instruction given to all who join the

Veiled Alliance.

The document’s florid style considerably embellishes historical

events. It transforms history into myth by writing the founders’

actions ever larger. Outlandish? Perhaps. But from this account

even a cynical initiate can sense our society’s compelling importance.

This copy consists of eleven birchbark sheets from the trees of the

Crescent Forest , tied in strips of inix leather and probably inscribed

at the learned scriptoria in the Shrine of the Winds in Raam. Need¬

less to say , we know neither the author nor the original recipient.

Now , student , learn the secrets of the Veiled Alliance!

Noble Sir,

At your initiation you asked about the founding of our

society. "What great wizard brought all this about? What

traitor betrayed its existence to the sorcerer-kings?" you

asked, and you wondered why we smiled. We had no time

to expound upon the question—the guards attacked then,

as you no doubt recall— and so my reply has had to wait.

The tale begins with Daclamitus, a man of sinister na¬

ture and dark look, of pursed lips and measuring gaze,

cloying to superiors and cruel to underlings. The black

robes of the templar bespoke his black heart. But I move

ahead of my story.

Out of Darkness, Light

Many kings’ ages past, Daclamitus rose high among

the templars of Tyr. Even by that evil calling’s standards,

his cruelty and ambition were proverbial. His underlings

knew Daclamitus as a cunning man, as evasive as a jarbo,

hard to grasp as a handful of air. His endless devotion to

self-advancement earned him the name "the Sleepless

One." His zeal in tracking traitors soon brought the re¬

spect of the sorcerer-king, Kalak, who granted him nearly

unlimited power as his senior adjutant.

Daclamitus’s office let him indulge certain private am¬

bitions, including an interest in ruins and objects of mag¬

ic. Perhaps he hoped to obtain some device from ancient

days that would let him rise farther — even to the black

throne of Tyr.

It happened that a group of adventurous antiquarians,

having studied ancient texts, set forth across the desert by

unknown paths to search for the lost city of Kor. After

many months, when they did not return to Tyr, Daclami¬

tus claimed their homes and goods in the name of Kalak.

But on a day blackened by the blowing sand, they re¬

turned from the wasteland bearing a strange helm.

Daclamitus ordered the weary travelers seized and im¬

prisoned. But torture could not make them reveal the

helm’s powers, and they died professing their ignorance.

For a time the helm lay upon Daclamitus’s desk. He

sensed its magic but could not decipher its purpose. How

could he unlock its secrets?

At last desire for power overcame cowardice. Alone in

his chambers, he put on the helm. As though a curtain

had parted, he saw the evil of his life. A spellbinding vi¬

sion showed how all his actions had made his heart small

and petty, how he had stamped out people’s impulses to¬

ward freedom, truth, and beauty. The ancient magic

wrought upon him changed him so powerfully and pain¬

fully that he fell into a swoon lasting days.

When he woke, he felt reborn. He asked his servants to

bring him the helm, but discovered that out of fear they

had torn it from his head and melted it in a blacksmith’s

forge. He forgave them and resolved to begin a new life,

redoubling his zeal in a high and worthy cause. But what?

Evils battered Athas like surging waves of dust on the Sea

of Silt.

In the moment this image rose to his mind, Daclamitus

saw the root of these troubles: the devastation that had

blighted the world itself. The templar knew that the blight

continued to this day, and he resolved to fight it. He would

rid Athas of the wizards who had almost destroyed it!

But his political acuity had not left him. Daclamitus

knew that doing this good work required craft and subtle¬

ty. If Kalak ever suspected his new nature, the Sleepless

One would fall into a permanent sleep. Fortunately, his

great abilities in the arts of the mind concealed his

thoughts, and his skill in duplicity hid his actions. Yet his

newfound emotions betrayed him.

The washerwomen and the stableboys spoke of the tem¬

plar’s new kindness, and the tale found its way to a skulk¬

ing, obsequious young man, an ambitious junior templar

named Antrifos. This shows that no matter to whom we

speak, the templars hear. Antrifos began watching Da¬

clamitus from secrecy.

In the following weeks Daclamitus persecuted wizards

in a spirit of righteous vengeance. The mention of his

name could make a mage turn pale with fear. Many of our

calling fell to his wrath, but they did not die in vain. For

as he took endless tortured confessions, the templar slowly

began to suspect what no templar knew: that magic takes

many forms and perhaps-just perhaps — could serve not

death but life.

Finally Daclamitus heard of a beautiful mage-woman

who dwelt “beyond shimmering water,” a wizard of power

and purity. He longed to capture her. The templar felt

certain that her confession would teach him, at last, the

truths of magic. But for months he heard no more about

her, neither her name nor the meaning of this "shimmer¬

ing water." So his persecution continued.

One night at his palatial home his guards brought him a

drunken merchant, a caravan driver. The traveler told a

story of a waterfall gleaming at night upon a distant peak,

Rogal Tor. The merchant had spotted it for only an in¬

stant, when the two moons took a certain position and this

wonder emerged flashing like a sheet of silver in the night.

Of course, the desert traders know seven dozen absurd

legends like this. But something in the man’s manner,

perhaps his attitude of fear and suspicion, provoked the

high templar’s curiosity. Daclamitus called astronomers

and geographers to his home, so that he could find this

mystery by square and compass. His eagerness drew the

attention of Antrifos, who made discreet inquiries of a

servant. The young man’s informant told him, "The high

templar seeks a waterfall in the desert. The sages place

this miracle at Rogal Tor, which I know has no more wa¬

ter than a bone."

Antrifos thought, "My leader has learned of great

power, or he has gone mad. Either way, I shall exploit his


Meanwhile, Daclamitus arranged and set out with an

expedition. They met great hardship in the wastes, but at

last in the cold desert night they came to Rogal Tor. Sharp

and clean as a nightmare beast’s fang, it stood pale gray

against the sky, outlined in stars.

Daclamitus scaled the peak alone, lest his troops’ pres¬

ence alert the wizard. High on the mountain, he saw the

twin moons hanging low in the sky, like eyes glowing

through dark fabric. Above him, a waterfall descended

from the jagged summit to a crack in the dark volcanic

rock. Moonlight made the water a beaded curtain, shim¬

mering with light.

The templar paused, awed by its beauty. He had never

seen so clear a night. Then in a lethal silence he climbed

up to the crevasse. He whispered Kalak’s name to silence

spells that might sound an alarm. Then he stepped


As the curtain of cool water drenched and refreshed

him, he entered a garden of green delight. Ferns flour¬

ished in each corner, grasses and sedge grew like a carpet,

and spidery air plants limned every crag of the cavern

wall. The pungent air closed in like a damp cloak. Light

diffused through the long cave from no clear source.

The templar silently walked deeper into the cave. He

had never seen so much green outside Kalak’s gardens.

There the plants grew in orderly array. This feverish

growth, though attractive, struck him as —undisciplined.

He stopped in surprise. On a bed of green moss, sur¬

rounded by a livery of pink orchids, lay a thin black¬

haired woman, asleep. Mesmerized, Daclamitus stared at

her tawny skin and finely drawn features. Could this

beauty command the defiling magic that blighted the

world? How could she maintain this sanctuary? Suddenly

angry at his own doubt, he fell upon the sleeping woman

and gagged her, then bound her hands with leather


As she stared in panic, he told her, "Never let your

guard down while a templar lives." He meant to sound

smug, yet as he watched her struggle with her bonds, he

felt only shame, and his voice revealed it. She fell still and

looked at him with curiosity. He said, "I seek — " and

then, after a pause, he finished, “learning.” The word

surprised them both.

When he took her from the cave, she put up no resist¬

ance. Then he perceived a dark shape against the darker

sky. A low growl, an odor of sweat —now, in the light

from the cavern mouth, a speckling of black on yellow

fur —he knew the beast. A leopard, from the Forest

Ridge, moving to attack!

Daclamitus made ready to call for help, but he stopped

in amazement as the woman said, "Naurax, back! Don’t

hurt him." She had worked her gag free — could she have

done that at any time? The creature halted and growled in

frustration. Then, to the templar’s astonishment, the leop¬

ard turned and silently vanished into the darkness.

Templar and wizard looked at each other. "You mean to

take me to Tyr, I assume," she said in a cool contralto


He nodded, forgetting to scowl as befits a captor.

On the long march back to Tyr, Daclamitus interro¬

gated the woman, who gave the name Averil. He asked,

“Why did you save me from the leopard?”

“I value my sanctuary,” she said. "I swore a vow that

no living thing would come to harm there, if I could help

it. There I gather everything I love."

On that long trip he asked more questions, and she an¬

swered frankly. His questions grew less hostile and more far-

ranging. He drank deeply of her knowledge, first learning of

preserver magic and then, before the trip ended, resolving

that the way of the preservers should not perish.

When they reached Tyr, Daclamitus artfully deceived

his underlings and brought Averil undetected from the

torture chambers. He forged the evidence of her death.

Then he hid her in a secret grotto he knew, in a line of

low hills far outside the city walls. With her went the

guardian leopard, Naurax. In the templar’s heart love

grew for Averil, his daring partner against the evil of the


But Antrifos, the ambitious watcher, did not believe the

record of Averil’s death. Why had the Sleepless One se¬

cured so little information? “No,” he thought, "he carries

out his scheme." So Antrifos continued to observe.

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And here is the remaining part of the story you are looking for; from Dragon Mag 185 (September 1992):

From the Two, Many

Daclamitus conceived a bold plan. He petitioned Kalak

for greater resources to hunt wizards, pointing out that

Kalak’s iron mines sorely needed slaves. (This happened

in ages past, before Kalak began his mad ziggurat.) Kalak

heeded his favorite’s wishes, and Daclamitus became per¬

haps the most powerful templar in Tyr’s bloodstained


His troops scoured the city and beyond. Many house¬

holds heard a knock in the night, and the Sleepless One

snared dozens of wizards. He interrogated each in private,

separating the foul defilers from the preservers. The defil¬

ers perished in the arena games, but the preservers went

to Kalak’s iron mines.

They toiled little in that tortured earth, however, for the

other part of Daclamitus’s plan saved them. The pre¬

servers encountered bad gasses, falling rock, or other

“fatal” accidents. In reality they escaped, via templar

magic and the arts of the mind, to Averil’s grotto. There

she instructed them in the magical arts, and Daclamitus,

visiting in disguise, taught them the equally subtle art of

subterfuge. When twelve men and women had gathered in

the grotto, Daclamitus christened them the first Council of

the Veiled Alliance.

Averil and Daclamitus saw each new preserver added to

their ranks as a son or daughter, and taught them to ad¬

dress one another as “brother” or “sister.” Here you see

the basis of one sign of the Veiled Alliance, "My father is a

templar," and its countersign, “My mother is a gardener.”

They taught the Council to seek others and establish the

Alliance’s protections wherever they could; to honor the

way of the preserver, and aid their brothers and sisters;

and to learn as little about one another as possible. This

way, if one fell into enemy hands, not all would perish.

The templar and the mage taught them the Alliance’s

aims, just as you learned them when I recruited you,

noble sir. And Daclamitus, over Averil’s objections, pro¬

pounded the doctrine of requital, which you learned at

your initiation: that those who leave the Alliance must die.

The life of a templar, conditioned by incessant fear of

betrayal, inspires ruthlessness. In his long rise to power,

Daclamitus had learned this lesson so deeply that no magi¬

cal helm could ever remove it.

Though the early mages resented the idea, they assent¬

ed to enforce requital and to bind all those who came after

to the same oath. “I dislike the idea,” said Averil, "but we

shall hope we need not put it to the trial."

Little did they know their first trial already approached.

Out of Happiness, Sorrow

Now happiness filled Daclamitus. His success as a tem¬

plar had brought him power and respect, but never had he

known close friends. In the next year and more, noble

principles worked their alchemy in him. Where he had felt

fear, even he who could kill with a word, he now felt brav¬

ery. Where he had lived in an acidic air of hatred and

suspicion, he felt love. He watched his twelve turn the

hidden grotto into another riot of greenery, and the festive

disorder pleased him.

Although he sought to conceal his growing aspirations

from the suspicious gaze of his subordinates, all could see

a change in him. His lightness of spirit, his new surety of

bearing galled them. Envy consumed Antrifos, but he hid

it even from himself. The young templar hounded his

spies without mercy, threatening them with worse than

death unless they uncovered the high templar’s secrets.

At last Antrifos discovered that Daclamitus often dis¬

guised himself and then journeyed into the desert. "Here

I have him," Antrifos thought. He would catch Daclami¬

tus and compel him to reveal his plots to Kalak. Then

Kalak would surely find a new favorite-in the brave

Antrifos, of course.

In the deep of night, Antrifos gathered a few net-fighters

from the games and waited in a narrow alley between Da-

clamitus’s house and the city gate. Daclamitus stumbled into

their ambush, but he had not neglected his training during

this happy interlude— indeed, he had gained much to train

for. He fought grimly, ironically calling on Kalak’s power to

blast through the nets and fell the gamesmen. Bloodied but

firm of purpose, he leaped at Antrifos.

The younger man had strength and vigor, but Daclami¬

tus knew the determination that comes from fighting for

love. They struggled in silence. If caught fighting in the

streets, the two templars would both suffer Kalak’s cruel


When Antrifos lunged and lost balance, Daclamitus

closed and delivered the final blow. But as Antrifos fell, he

sent forth all his long hatred and envy, cursing Daclamitus

in Kalak’s name. The foul doom blighted Daclamitus. He

destroyed his enemy’s body and staggered home, scarcely

able to move under Antrifos’s blight.

Painfully he removed his disguise and tried the healing

arts he knew. Nothing deterred the curse, so in agony he

summoned his underlings. The templars arrived at mid¬

night and performed their offices —or claimed they did —

to no avail. Perhaps hoping their leader’s fate would incur

Kalak’s anger, they carried Daclamitus to the sorcerer-

king’s palace.

Kalak showed no anger. He dismissed the templars and

calmly dispelled the curse. But in doing so, Kalak also

dispelled the virtue wrought by the helm. Daclamitus’s old

nature returned-greed, ambition, hatred, and distrust—

stronger than ever after the helm’s long repression.

For a few moments Daclamitus lay speechless, tears

streaming down his face as he felt the capacity for joy, for

love, slip away. Kalak stood grimly by. Some in our broth¬

erhood believe that the sorcerer-king had entertained only

vague suspicions of Daclamitus’s changed nature. But

others hold that Kalak had known at every moment of his

templar’s plans and ambitions, and now dispelled them

because they worked well with a scheme of his own to

destroy all preservers in Tyr. Who can say? Who knows

the mind of a sorcerer-king?

Daclamitus dried his tears, for he could no longer re¬

member why he shed them. His voice rough with a new¬

found hatred, he laid out a plan to destroy the society he

had founded.

He would go to the grotto the next day. While he dis¬

tracted the preservers with sham lessons, his templars and

guards could approach from without. Then when he said a

certain word, they would assault and destroy the wizards.

Kalak arranged matters at once.

The next day Daclamitus hastened to the thriving grot¬

to. Averil greeted him with a kiss and presented him with

a nightingale. It had flown into the grotto, and Averil had

charmed it. He did not smile, either at her kiss or the

bird’s sweet song. Naurax the leopard growled low, and

Averil knew sudden suspicion. While the templar looked

elsewhere, Averil used the very system of signs that Da¬

clamitus had taught them, to warn the others to beware.

Daclamitus began his lesson. Five of the students drew

close, asking him questions, apparently absorbed in the

teachings. The others secretly prepared their charms and

countercharms, hoping that they had learned earlier les¬

sons well. Then Daclamitus spoke the name of Kalak, and

the templars rushed in.

The terrible battle threw Averil against Daclamitus. She

held a dagger but did not strike, and as she struggled in his

grip, she thought only, "Where has the man I knew gone,

and why has he left us?" But she could not dare to shed a

tear, though in his eyes she saw only hatred. She saw the

mind that had formed the doctrine of requital. With that

thought, she stabbed. As Daclamitus fell, she said in a dead,

dry voice, “This time I did not let down my guard.”

Kalak arrived at battle’s end. He found many fallen

templars, many guards, and the bloody carcass of the

leopard. Of the preservers he found . . . five. He raged,

for a new enemy had appeared and, worse yet, vanished

in the same moment. He would never relax his guard

again. He ordered the body of Daclamitus burnt without

honor and its ashes scattered to the winds. Never since has

a templar commanded such power. Never since has any¬

one commanded a tyrant’s trust.

Out Into the World

Averil and the seven surviving men and women of the

First Council retreated to another mountain sanctuary

within sight of Rogal Tor. The king’s spies watched the

Tor for months in hopes the wizards would return, but

finally Kalak lost patience and recalled them. When the

spies vanished, the wizards did indeed return to restore

the cave’s verdant life.

After months of healing herbs and regimens, the wiz¬

ards regained their strength. After years of introspection

and discussion, they regained their determination. While

Averil lived, none mentioned the fate of Daclamitus. She

had come to love him and share in his dream. In that

spirit, she prepared the seven not only in the magical arts,

but in philosophy as well, that they might learn to seek

and recognize the good.

After some years, she called the seven together and

said, "The time has come to cast you into the world. I

have trained you in all I know of magic. Now you must

conceal these arts and live using the trades you have

learned. But the Veiled Alliance must survive. Duty com¬

pels us not just to preserve our lives, but more, to pre¬

serve our bond.

"Do not forget me, your mother, nor Daclamitus, your

father. He made us. Let his fate teach you constant vigi¬

lance. I give you my blessing."

Then she sent them away across the land. A year later

one of the seven returned to the sanctuary. He found that

the beautiful green plants had died, and there was no sign

of Averil. Instead, in the center of the cave lay a pile of

ash gathered by the wind.

Now this man had a gift for sensing the shreds of past time

that cling to any object like a tracery. He rubbed the ash

between his fingers, assensing its history. Later he spoke to

his fellows with wonder and tears. “Not her,” he said. "I

don’t know what became of her. Not her, no. He returned."

The story of our founding carries the irony that still

marks our existence. A templar founded this society of

wizards; our founder became the agent of our betrayal

and exposure to the enemy. The society, devoted to pre¬

serving the life of our world, still espouses a doctrine of

requital that better befits the ruthless templars. Later you

may discover other ironies. Do not let them blind you to

the truth we support.

At times Tyr’s Alliance has grown large, and at 'times it

has withered almost to vanishing. But just as ashes nour¬

ish the roots of plants, a new Alliance always reforms.

Likewise we always face hardship, so long as ignorance

remains. Visiting wizards from other cities tell of the same

problems, and I understand that when they return home,

they sometimes begin their own Alliances. These do not

follow ours, but they will shelter you as you travel, as you

must shelter them.

So keep our cause forever in mind, and remember to

help your brothers and sisters where you can. Service and

silence above all, noble sir. In drinking this water of

knowledge, you have truly become one of us. To you, my

new brother, I say welcome!

Allen Varney wrote the AD&D® DARK SUN™ campaign accessory DSR3 , Veiled Alliance.

Here : Dragon Magazine 185

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Merci Seb!

God, it would have taken months before I read those magazine stories and discovered one was what I was looking for.