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Soul Study

Tags: #Conjuration  #BlueDremora  #Emrar Charime 
  • Member
    May 13

    Soul Study

    By Emrar Charime Oricano Laratheous


    This tome is a collection of rare information and unofficial research conducted into The Nature of Souls. I was given a lead by a professor in Hammerfell (a man who I cannot name for he wishes to be anonymous), a hint at an unsolved mystery and unfinished enquiry into the mysterious beings known as “The Ideal Masters” and other creatures that are fabled to walk the plane of oblivion known as “The Soul Cairn”. What I found would lead me all across Tamriel on a wild chase to uncover the truth of research conducted by a man centuries dead.    


    In other words, what you are about to read is a study contrived by people with far greater understanding of death -and undeath for that matter- than myself. I have simply collected and sorted the papers, journals and research experiments of Malovan Mercury - a conjuration master and rumored necromancer that died more than a century before the publication of this book. The information presented in this book may seem heretical to some, and all of it is strictly taboo, some (if not a great deal) is pure speculation. Malovan was a wise man, that I can state without lying, but the line between wisdom and lunacy is thin.


    Thus I present to you “Soul Study”, my latest work and greatest intellectual achievement to date; a collection of the information, sorted, deciphered and cataloged, written by the deceased master of Conjuration, Malovan Mercury.     



    4E 18, 24 of Last Seed - Malovan Mercury

    Study log, day 1, arrival in Morrowind


    The night I arrived in Morrowind was misty and quiet. I had been forced to sail from Blackmarsh and East around the continent till I reached the port town of Dankull. It was a necessity for me to travel to this ashen country, for in my homeland of Cyrodill necromancy is frowned upon and despised. I cannot uncover the information I wish to find without crossing certain boundaries that would most likely get me killed in my homeland. Fortunately for me, the Dark Elves have no such laws against resurrectionists or necromancers. Here in Morrowind i will be free to research and experiment as i please.


    But first thing’s first, and there are already questions that i have not answered: why am I in Morrowind? And why do I need to study necromancy? However, in order to answer these questions I must first define who I (myself as a person) am:

    My name is Malovan Mercury, I am a master conjurer and connoisseur of Summonings and all matters related to the binding of souls to gems. My life has up until this point revolved around teaching the art of conjuration at various courts, as well as my “hobby”, which has been random research and experiments regarding the connection between Nirn and the plane of Oblivion where souls are whisked off to once their earthly connection (or living body) is lost.


    Quite frankly I find the school of conjuration indescribably fascinating, and already at a young age I was reading thick books in order to answer my questions: where do the creatures you conjurer come from? I always liked to think that some, such as golden saints or dremoras are pretty much summoned up from a realm of Oblivion in which they were in, but what about the other creatures - like the souls of the dead, how are they bound to a husk and reanimated? And the simplest way to define this indeterminate travel of mine to Morrowind, would be to call it my hunt for my Magnum Opus.


    Spiritus Anima (Animation of Spirits)

    This diagram is known as The First Pillar in the understanding of conjuration, it is known as Spiritus Anima (in Cyrodillic) and translates to “Animation of Spirits” in the high tongue, or “Spirit Binding”.

    The first thing to notice about the diagram are the seven base types of summonings: the earthen type (Occultum), the spirit type (Laputem), the daedra type (Terræ), the ghost type (Vilita), the shadow type (Interiora), the physical type (Invenies) and the blood type (Rectificando). Each type of summoning allows the conjurer to summon a different type of spirit. Each type of spirit has a set of qualities that defines it apart from the others. The one thing that all types of spirits have in common, is the fact that none of them “belong” to Nirn.


    Now, this diagram is important to the research of Malovan Mercury as much of his research is based upon the basic rules that The Spiritus Anima is also structured upon. I have gone though much pain to decipher Malovan’s notes with regards to which spirits (or summonings) fall under which category. Malovan’s index looked as such:


    • The earthen type (Occultum): Elemental Atronachs

    • The spirit type (Laputem): Bound weapons and armor

    • The daedra type (Terræ): Beings from other planes of oblivion, such as Seekers

    • The ghost type (Vilita): Shade spells, also known as Ghost Callings

    • The shadow type (Interiora): Necromantic spells

    • The physical type (Invenies): spirits of the Bloodmoon, such as familiar spells

    • The blood type (Rectificando): Summonings that require sacrifice of flesh and blood


    The diagram was originally created by Dunmer conjurer Tythera Malythrin, and is largely considered the foundation of all conjuration spells. Malovan Mercury was very fond of this diagram, and refers to it multiple times throughout his journal and research papers.



    4E 18, 29 of Last Seed - Malovan Mercury

    Study log, day 5, research in Morrowind


    Five days have passed since I arrived in Morrowind, and in this time I have accomplished little else than hiring a caravan to take me to a small village in northern Morrowind where I have purchased a small house which shall serve as my home and laboratory.


    There is little to report as far as my research is concerned as of now. However, I have noticed that the dunmer people are extremely well informed as with regards to conjuration and I have heard several conversations about necromancy without any form of condescending misunderstandings with regards to the nature of such magic.


    I also talked with the caravan master, and he told me that if I wanted information I should seek out one of the master wizards that rule the great clan houses of Morrowind. This intrigued me, and at the moment I am on my way to speak to a master wizard from House Indoril, needless to say that I am very excited.        


    There were several pages missing from the next part of Malovan’s journal, but I managed to find a few notes that showed what Malovan learned from this mysterious Indoril wizard. Apparently he was told about a diagram much older than The Spiritus Anima, and it was said to be in High Rock. I’m not sure as to what the exact importance of this older diagram is, but I am sure that Malovan found it absolutely essential, for within two days of speaking to the indoril wizard he traveled to High Rock.   


    High Rock

    4E 18, 38 of Last Seed - Malovan Mercury

    Study log, day 14, The Wheel of Souls


    No sooner did I arrive in Morrowind and speak to the master wizard from house Indoril, than I left Morrowind headed for High Rock onboard a small ship sailing through the Ghost Sea.


    Apparently a much older diagram, the farther to the Spiritus Anima was uncovered in an old elvish ruin in High Rock. I simply must see this diagram, and help the Breton conjurers decipher it’s meaning; maybe it holds the key to the answers I seek.   


    What Malovan found in High Rock, was as he predicted a much older diagram. Although unexpected, the Breton researchers were happy for Moldovans sudden appearance, and over the course of two months they managed to decipher the diagram and make a copy as close to the original as possible.    

    They called it “The Wheel of Souls” and just like the Spiritus Anima it shows seven types of conjuration magics, but it also shows an eighth dimension of conjuration which was completely unheard of at the time. It was translated from ancient elvish to mean “Faceless Masters” and no one really knew what it meant.   


    Malovan Defined this eighth dimension of Conjuration as follows:

    This new dimension of conjuration can only be described as an ancient, inter-dimensional force; a form of harnessable energy that manipulates the powers beyond those of the natural world within another plane of Oblivion. Its influence upon the world is often bizarre, unforeseen, and random, just as the world affects it in bizarre, unforeseen, and random ways. It can be said with a degree of certainty that magic will always change elements of the mortal realms that it comes into contact with, but it’s difficult to anticipate what form this change will take. Magic bends and unbinds the physical laws of the mortal plane and can remake all things into things and processes that otherwise couldn’t exist.  


    From his notes I have been able to more closely define what exactly the meaning of this new dimension is. In the same ruins where the ancient stone slab with the original Wheel of Souls was found, there were also found a load of old scrolls describing the phenomenon. Apparently the new dimension refers to The Masters of The Plane of The Dead - or The Ideal Masters…   


    Were I to hypothesize about the origins of these beings – and being a learned Altmer of the magical sciences, I consider myself more than qualified to do so – I would theorize that the Ideal Masters are not an individual species, but a taxonomic classification more on par with a shapeless entity that serves as the ruler of The Soul Cairn, not unlike the Daedric Princes are lord over their individual realms. However, whereas each Daedric Prince single handedly dictate their realms, the Ideal Masters are -If the research of Malovan is to be believed- a multitude of coexisting entities.    


    But before I explain the nature of The IDeal Masters, I must first tell about The Soul Cairn itself.


    Malovan Mercury’s Notes

    Written by Malovan Mercury, sorted by Emrar Charime Oricano Laratheous


    Contemplations about The Soul Cairn


    In order to enter the Soul Cairn, a mortal usually must be dead. This can be achieved by partial soul trapping -which is the option I myself have experimented with-, or by becoming undead. The realm was once accessible from the voidgate of theBattlespire, but the link was severed after the citadel was destroyed. I do believe that the scrolls I uncovered in High Rock originate from some of those who originally founded the first portal to that Plane of Oblivion.  


    I did it! I managed a partial soul trapping which in turn rendered me partially undead. The tricky part was discovering the component alchemical ingredients that would allow me to open a sustainable portal to The Soul Cairn. I have spoken to the Ideal Masters, and although much of it was riddles, I admit to feeling a certain curiosity toward them. As a secondary precaution, I am combining my own blood into the formula which should prevent anyone from being able to duplicate it and following me into the Soul Cairn.

    The formula consists of:

    • Finely ground bone meal

    • Purified void salt

    • Soul gem shards

    Using the proper measurements, place the above in the silver-lined portal vessel and add blood as a reactive agent.


    The Soul Cairn's landscape is desolate, bleak, barren and grey, marked by blackened, dead ruins, bones, gravestones and "soul fissures". Nothing grows in the realm. The realm contains many structures associated with burial, such as the Coffin Chapel and the Boneyard. The Chapel of Love is a building which contains the Emerald Gates, a portal which can be used to teleport to any of the outer realms, provided the user knows the name of the realm. The Emerald Gates are powered by the Mana Font, which is controlled by three rods, the Rod of the Pilot, the Rod of the Pillar, and the Rod of the Passage, collectively known as the Fingers of Life Lightning strikes the ground constantly, and lightning attractors can harness this power to create Black Soul Gems.



    *Tomes of Knowledge Series - Book One*


    *Tomes of Knowledge Series - Book Two*


    To be continued…


    Note: This was my original post for the Grimoire event, only this doesn't exactly count as a bestiary. Anyways, I decided to post it anyways and may expand on this half-finished piece of work in the future.  

  • Member
    May 17

    Hey, a lore post! And an interesting one too :) A lot of the content you have here draws heavilly on matter that doesn't appear in game- at least not that I am familiar with - yet despite that I very much like how you have taken something reminiscent of Newton's alchemy and made it fit into the TES setting. In terms of creativity, I always love that. Working within the confines of lore is great, but finding ways of using history of our own world in the gameworld means a learning experience on two fronts.

    How accurate is the Spiritus Animus? I mean, is what you have said part of our world? I just want to be clear so that what I have learned from your post can be considered that learning experience I mentioned. It could be that this is something better suited to blogs, but that would be for Teineeva and you to discuss at some stage.

    Anyway, I like the subject matter and the presentation of your idea :)

  • Member
    May 18

    Hey Phil, thanks for the feedback!


    The post is written as an in-character biography and conjuration study combined. All of it is more or less based completely on my imagination; I obviously tried to make it as lore friendly as possible, but as far as real life alchemy is concerned I simply found the images and came up with some basic rules for a conjuration system. None of it is real as far as I know, sorry to disappoint heh.

    In other words I just googled "Alchemy" and picked the Spiritus Anima for its simple design, and "The Wheel of Time" figure is from the Warhammer spell system.


    However, the snippets from Malovan's journal are inspired by a real life explorer named Robert Ripley, and the basic concept of Spiritus Animus is inspired from a book called "Signs and Symbols" in a chapter about "Symbol Systems" and the Buddhist metaphysical "Life Wheel" - but only in the form of the basic concept, the names of spirits are pure fiction from my side.    

    Hope this clarifies it a little ;)