| Ethena, The First Paladin and her Griffon Mount, Aalok
| Personal information |
| Character Name:
|| Ethena Brightwind
- The First Paladin
- The High Prophet
- The Holy Maiden
| Date of Birth:
| Date of Death:
Ethena was a note-worthy general, religious leader and prophet from Thessal. She is most known for being the founding member of Ethenaism.
Long ago, Thessal was a kingdom ruled by a magocracy. Political power was directly tied to a noble wizard's power. In order to gain access to more arcane power, it was common for a wizard to make dark deals with demons and devils.
Today, these heretics would be executed by an inquisition, but no such thing existed at the time. These leaders would do cruel things to the populace in order to amuse the demons and devils. It was a very dark time in Thessal.
When Ethena was very young, she claimed that an angel would visit her every night in her dreams. The angel identified himself as The Herald of the Most Divine and convinced Ethena that she was destined for great things - that the world's greatest scar would be healed because of her actions yet to come.
At 14 years old, she began healing the injured and curing the sick, simply by laying her hands on the wounded and sick. By 16, she had amassed an army of people opposing the ruling magi.
She tried to talk the magi out of making heretical deals, but it ultimately ended with a civil war in Thessal. Today that civil war is known as The Exalted March.
Under Ethena's command, the army overtook the nation and the people wanted to name Ethena as their new queen, but she refused. Instead, she established the government as a republic and founded The Grand Cathedral. She brought in priests and trained them to spread the word of The Creator, and also to speak out against and denounce heresy. She also trained knights to destroy these evils when people wouldn't listen to diplomacy and reason. This was the first inquisition.
Ethena led, under the guidance of The Herald of the Most Divine, an expedition into the nation of Corven. Though Ethena and her priests and knights regarded their expedition as a mission of peace, the Corvenians saw only armed knights invading and killing those who would not bow to their will. Officials from Corven warned Ethena that her campaign would be considered an act of war if she and her contingent did not return to Thessalion soil. But Ethena regarded what she was doing as a holy mission and refused to leave.
The Corvenians responded with military might, decimated Ethena's Inquisition and captured Ethena herself. She was given a trial and then burned at the stake.
Opposition of Ethenaism often use this as an example that Ethena's claims were false. After all, why would this angel lead her to her death if she was The Creator's chosen one? Ethenians regard this act as her crowning achievement, however. Ethena's death inspired many people in Thessal and sparked life into the Cathedral. Before too long, churches and cathedrals were being built all over Thessal and her movement gained a lot of steam. Ethenians view her martyr as a shining example of the good obedience to the church can do. Ethena's obedience to the angel caused her mission and belief to inspire hundreds of thousands to her cause for centuries.
- It is better for those of faith to not marry - that they might better devote their lives to The Creator.
- Only a fool would chop a tree with a dull ax.
- You can't pass judgement upon those which you can not prove the wrongdoing of. It is not justice to hang a man for murder, but to hang the right one for murder.
- With great wisdom comes great grief. The more I am taught by The Herald, as is my sorrow.
- Fools look only for the pleasures in life. The say "Let's look for the 'good things' in life." But what they find is meaningless. What good does it do to seek pleasure?
- Self-sacrifice is the most noble act of humanity. Any fool can lose what is not hers. The truly righteous gives of herself.
- Light is substance, and dark is nothing. Emptiness. This is what the demons offer you. Darkness. Nothing. But even they are wise enough to know the truth. That even the most dim of candles can defeat the dark.
Ethena's Time Line
- 157: Ethena was born
- 171: Ethena encounters Aviv in a market in Laencaster at the age of 14. She cures his blindness and Aviv devotes his life to The Creator. Aviv leaves Laencaster.
- 171: Ethena interposes herself between a thief named Yissa and two guards who were trying to kill him. Ethena condemns the guards who leave and Ethena cures Yissa's injuries. Yissa thanks Ethena and returns to Halsworthy.
- 171: Ethena ministers to the public at The Circa in Laencaster. Thousands of people come to hear her speak and receive healing. This moment is called The First Sermon by Ethenians. She tells the crowd of The Creator and of The Herald of the Most Divine who speaks to her. Lastly, she tells the people of the Principle Tenants. Much of the crowd dispersed, but several people stayed behind to ask questions. One person in the crowd asked about the Magocracy if The Creator says not to make deals with demons. Ethena told the crowd that The Herald of the Most Divine has denounced The Grand Summit. Ethena did not know there was a noble in the crowd, and that noble used what she said as a way to get rid of her. He accused her of treason and ordered the city guard to apprehend her. Ethena's parents intervened and paid for it with their lives. The death of Ethena's parents angered the crowd which rushed in to protect Ethena. A couple sneaked her away in the confusion and brought her to the city limits and told her to run and never return.
- 171-173: Ethena, under the instruction of The Herald of the Most Divine, left Laencaster and headed for Whiteridge. She ministered there and healed the sick as she had done before. But this time, she did it in secret. She told each person she spoke to and each person she helped to tell no one about what she did. But her stories were spread anyway. The guards at Whiteridge found her and she was forced to flee again. Ethena then went to Dawnsfield. Learning from her past experiences, she only stayed in each town for a few days, then she moved on. She visited Oddwick, Foulcrest, Black Hollows and many more towns. She became a folk hero throughout all of Thessal. And This period of time is known as The Pilgrimage by Ethenians.
- 173: During Ethena's Pilgrimage, she had amassed a large number of followers despite the fact that she really didn't want anyone following her. That was until The Herald of the Most Divine revealed the reason why she had amassed a large congregation. She was instructed to return to Laencaster and confront The Grand Summit about her charges.
- 173: Ethena confronts her accusers at The Grand Summit in Thessal. The magocracy attempts to condemn and arrest her, but she was backed by tens of thousands of supporters. Fearing a bloody confrontation, the magocracy had no choose but to let her go.
- 174: Ethena returns to The Grand Summit and demands the magi stop making deals with demons and devils. The magocracy laughs her demands away and again lets her go, fearing a confrontation with the thousands of supporters.
- 174: Ethena is told by The Herald of the Most Divine to march against Thessal. She successfully leads her people in a revolt against The Grand Summit and executes all of the nobles. The people try to name her Queen of Thessal, but she refuses and instead establishes a republic in which she herself had no political power. Later that year, she establishes The Grand Cathedral.
- 174-175: Ethena continues to build The Grand Cathedral and to minister to the people of Thessal
- 175: The Herald of the Most Divine orders Ethena to go to Corven. She begins to minister to the people and vanquish heretics. Corvenian officials consider her march an act of war and respond with military. Ethena is captured, tried and burned at the stake.