The Rune Lords/Hex Lords

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Over 30,000 years ago, as Earthlings measure time, a great portal was sealed by a conclave of sorcerers and magicians following a titanic battle. The truth of how and why this portal appeared, and why it was sealed have been lost to time. All that remains are legends, passed down through the generations. Even those that are keenly concerned with it in the present day are only partially aware of what it is they fight over. At the time of the sealing, 11 wizards sacrificed their lives to power the spell that seals the gate. 10 of them each left behind an artifact that together, could be used to open the gate. Although the gate needed to be sealed, it was foretold that it would need to be opened again in the future. In honor of their sacrifice, a council of 22 magic users from all walks of life vowed to protect and guard the gateway. This council was split into 2 guilds one, the Rune Hand, would be charged with the absolute control and protection of the sealed doorway the other, the Hex Hand, would be charged with researching and watching for portents and signs of when the portal would need to be opened, collectively they were known as the Hands of Fate.

For some 13,500 years the council held their charge without fail. Gradually however, the name and purpose of the gateway faded from common knowledge. Finally one member of the Hex Hand passed away and having named no successor, and none coming forward to take their place, the chair remained empty. Also during the passing of millennia, the 2 guilds grew further and further apart as their oaths and purposes began to become muddled with personal ambitions and politics. For the Hex Hand, they began to believe it was their goal to open the gate, that it had in fact been mandated by the original council and that great power and glory would be bestowed upon them when they did. The Rune Hand in turn forgot that there might be a reason to open the gate, and in fact labeled it the source of all evil and did their best to hide the fact that keys to the gate, that should never be opened, did in fact exist. After 28,000 years, the numbers of the council continued to wither and eventually the 2 guilds broke out in open confrontation with each other over the fate of the portal. By this time the existence of the portal was such a closely guarded secret that if a sorcerer learned of it at all, let alone tried to join either side, did so by pure happenstance.

Today the 2 sides refuse to acknowledge they were ever part of the same sacred trust. The Hex Hand or Hex Lords as they prefer to be called now, number only 5. They are vile power hungry monsters who believe the portal is a gateway to some ultimate power that will give them dominion over the Cosmos. The Rune Hand or Rune Lords number only 7 and guard the gate out of fear, fear of what none of them really know, they are bound together by the simple idea that the gate must never be opened.



Hex on Earth

Aside from the keys, the first council further protected the gateway by making it ambulatory. That is, it moves periodically, never staying in the same position for more than a few days. The portal appears in 9 different location through out the cosmos, 7 of these locations are known, one has been lost and one was never known to anyone that survived the original sealing. To open the gate, 1 key must be placed in position in rapid succession in the 9 locations. Over the millennia the Hex Lords acquired nearly all of the 11 keys. The only real defense the Rune Lords could maintain was to control the locations of appearance and to bar the Hex Lords from having access to the gate. The 7 known locations have been fought over and changed hands many times. The wild cards, the 2 unknown locations have been the real key. At this time one Hex lord, known as Karactacus, has come to believe that one of the lost locations is on a small and nearly forgotten planet called Earth.

Long ago Earth had been host to numerous powerful magical civilizations and entities which had all since been lost, or believed lost. But recently those powers had begun to stir. Karactacus became convinced that the portal location was on Earth and traveled there to find it. Upon arriving he found a plethora of obstacles confronting him, ancient sorcerers, demons of all shapes and sizes, and all manner of meta-powered beings. But ultimately he was not deterred, merely more convinced that this was the place. However, even if he did find it, history had taught him that holding it was the hard part. Karactacus is a techromancer, that is to say he uses dark magic and a diabolical knowledge of cybernetics and alchemy to create undead minions and monstrosities to carry out his will. As he searches for the portal he is also building the undead army that will help him hold it against the Rune Lords everyone one who falls in battle to him and his minions then join him as his undead servants. And lately he has even begun to recruit some few to join him though they have little comprehension of what awaits them when the portal is found. Yet proudly do they take up the cry, “Open the gate!” Open the Gate!” each of them privately believing they will be rewarded with limitless power and planning their own secret treachery.