Often all we get of lore is a snippet, a few lines to tempt us in and then nothing more. I am over the stars, to tell you that is not the case today! Today I have a story to share with you. The story of Anara Starsong. The Seer we have heard about on the forums before. A woman who has had some interesting times over her young life. This background story was shared by the Lore Master himself Jeromy ‘Caspian’ Walsh.
Anara is a noblewoman, the youngest daughter of a warm and caring Duke. At the tender age of six she started having strange nightmares that eventually turned into waking dreams. Initially, her family just thought she had an active imagination, but before long they realized she was having memories and flashbacks. Memories… that were not her own.
While they were able to hide her gift for a time, when she was eleven years old her Talent became public knowledge. She foresaw something that had not yet come to pass and while she and her family were respected in the community, she was immediately accused of sorcery and her family had no choice but to send her away.
They had planned to send her to live with a cousin, but before they could they were approached by an organization that called themselves the Unseen University. Part school, part church, they claimed they could teach Anara more about her abilities and keep her safe. And so, at just eleven years old Anara left home and was taken to live within the cloistered cathedral that can only been seen by those who have the gift. The only way to find the Unseen University, is to be invited.
In addition to the difficulty in finding the University, anonymity is used to help protect the identity of its members. Upon entering for the first time they give you a new name in a formal ceremony. The name is often based upon your specific Talent or magical aptitude. In Anara’s case, they asked her to describe her gift, and what her abilities were. She said she could read the stars. That they twinkled in the sky and danced around like musical notes on a sheet of paper. Of course, she would learn later her gift was so much more than that. But as a result of her description, they named her Anara Starsong.
Anara lived for several more years inside the quiet, cloistered halls of the Unseen University. As she got older, her power began to grow. She realized that she could “see” both back into the past, as well as into the future. And her prophetic visions were never wrong. Once she realized this she began keeping a set of scribing tools by her at all times, as she couldn’t control when her visions occurred.
When she would awaken from her day-time dream she would write down all that she saw in a set of journals. Those who knew her well within the University took to calling her “The Seer”. Those who did not saw only the pages and books she carried around with her. Partially in jest, partially to be cruel, they began calling her the Keeper of Chronicles. They were not wrong.
Over the years Anara wrote down much that was not yet known about the past, and many things that had not yet come to pass.
While her time at the Unseen University was enjoyable, if not a bit lonely, it wouldn’t last. When she was 21 years old she was struck down with a sudden vision while working in the library. It was unlike any vision she had seen before. It felt more like a message than a vision…. a warning. Was someone, or something, trying to communicate with her?
What she saw scared her. She saw an ancient being, in a distant, unfamiliar place, awakened from their slumber by a Child of Mann… Then the scene flashed before her eyes and she saw destruction, chaos, the entire world turning to the darkness.
When she awoke, her path was clear. Still young and naïve, after having grown up in the quiet halls of the Unseen University, and unsure of her final destination, she gathered her belongings and the sizeable fortune left by her family and she left the relative safety and comfort of her childhood.
Today, nobody knows exactly where Anara is. But it’s said she wanders the lands, posing as a scribe or lore master, visiting villages, courts, towns, and castles, searching for the person in her vision who would one day bring about the darkness.
I shall allow you a quiet moment to take all that in.
Now if you just want to take in the majesty of the story, then I suggest leaving now as this is the part where I ramble on about all the emotions and speculations I have! I must make very clear that everything below is utterly speculation and is only my take on the story. The above is cannon the below is straight from the brain of a crazy person.
I am going to jump straight into the feelings. I wasn’t expecting it but I felt sorry for her. I felt like she needed us so much to be there, to help her, to support her. She has lost her family, her childhood, and the rest of her future all because of something she can not control. Her determination we see towards the end, and the almost futile nature of her task, seems such a bad combination that it can’t end in anything but disappointment for her. Basically I want to go and give her a hug!
We also know more about the Unseen University, and one word stuck with me; ‘church’. Is there some religion that focuses on those with a magical affinity? But, we know now that magic is something seen as terrible and powerful, did those that follow magic fall from grace? Were they persecuted? Perhaps those that have the ability were once worshipped, seen as ‘blessed’ by the Gods and are now seen as nothing more than a blight.
The final thing I want to draw your attention too is “Over the years Anara wrote down much that was not yet known about the past, and many things that had not yet come to pass.” How did she know the difference? While we know what she saw was never wrong, was her interpretation of it always correct? Did she always know which was which? What if she made a mistake?
So what is your take on it all? Let me know in the comments because I would love to hear what things jump out at you. Do you feel sorry for her, or do you just think she is attention seeking? What about the dark ‘prophecy’, how do you think that might affect the game we play?