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Five Gods. Five Magics. Five Thrones.

From the sparkling cities of the Ensollian basin with their spires and minarets that soar into the burning sun, to the vast golden fields of Crisia and Perrence glistening with morning dew and the promise of bountiful harvests, to the proud stone keeps and snowcapped peaks of Eskand in the South, the land of Constantia is one of balance, peace, and time-honoured virtue, bound together by magics gifted to the Firstborn by the Gods themselves. Honest lords and just kings preside over a loyal, beloved, and industrious populace. All is well.

Except that it isn’t.

Following the collapse of the Avincian Empire a thousand years ago at the hands of howling Eskandish hordes, no single entity has been able to unify the disparate peoples of the continent. Petty nobles, conquerors, and greedy kings have fought for the scraps, ruthlessly exploiting the common people and squeezing everything that they can from the land itself. Under their rule, Constantia has bled.


Their grip on power has been maintained through the stranglehold they have over magic. It has been regulated, controlled, studied and, most importantly, monopolized. The ability to use it manifests in arcane and unpredictable ways, but first and foremost, it’s in your blood. If your ancestors used magic, it is likely that you will be able to use it too. If they didn’t, then your chances are slim.

Yet, the march of social progress necessarily follows that of technological. As Constantian culture, learning, and religion have spread across the globe on the sails of caravels and galleons and a wealthy new class of merchants and artisans has emerged, there have been stirrings. Potent new paths to power and prosperity have revealed themselves, and those of common blood have increasingly bought their way into the use of magic by ‘marrying up’. With or without the approval of those in charge of it, the world is changing. Some people warn that the gods are stirring. Others dare whisper that the gods are not real.

Into this potent mix of burgeoning opportunity and lurking peril steps you: a first-year student at the Ersand'Enise Academy of Thaumaturgy. As a member of the storied establishment's newest cohort, you bring your hopes, your fears, your background, and considerable power in 'The Gift' with you. It is said that your group, aged fourteen to eighteen and born during the double ascendance of Shune the Learner, is the strongest in a century. That strength will be needed. Representatives from the world's great nations will be gathering at Ersand'Enise mere weeks after your arrival for the Conclave of the Five Thrones, and tensions are high.

This time, however, the delegates will need to be protected not only from each other's political machinations but from three new and novel threats. Over the past handful of years, aberrations have begun appearing in increasing numbers and this pattern seems unlikely to reverse of its own accord. Holes in the fabric of reality - shapes of man, beast, and object alike formed of the purest blackness - coming into contact with them can empower the magic of those skilled in The Gift at the cost of addiction. However, it can also drive those not as blessed to insanity or even death. For reasons unknown, but perhaps related, the mysterious yasoi have turned precipitously away from human society. The only other sentient species on the planet to actively live among humans, they have been shy friends and unconventional allies for most of history, but the past few decades have seen them become fiercely insular and even hostile. There is talk of them closing the mountain passes that sustain trade and travel for much of the Western half of the continent. Into this scene steps the Traveler: a shadowy but charismatic figure who has been harnessing the power of the aberrations and stirring up class conflict. He preaches a revolutionary message to the common people that threatens war at a pivotal moment. It is clear that he seeks to tear down the existing order, but what he intends to replace it with is as yet unknown.

Of course, you, dear young student, have nothing to worry about. Heads older and wiser than yours have matters firmly in hand. Still... it pays to be vigilant, doesn't it?









🙠 Laws of the Land 🙢

So, what is The Hourglass Order? In short, this is the story of a changing society in its equivalent of the 1600s. Class conflict is in the air, new technologies and philosophies are set to emerge, and old orthodoxies find themselves challenged. These actions play out against the backdrop of a mid-fantasy world called Sipenta, and magic - known as 'The Gift' - is at the heart of everything. Our world isn't just any fantasy setting, however. Instead, it adheres to a sort of fantastical realism. "Because magic" doesn't cut it in Sipenta. Things are driven by a powerful internal logic.

Yet, that isn't to say that there's no room for wonder. On the contrary, students step into a big wide world full of all sorts of incredible creatures, cultures, and magics. Dispatched on urgent errands and quests by a retired headmaster who recognizes both the dangers and the opportunities of the present situation, these eager youths will often find themselves stepping outside of academy grounds. Between school arcs, groups of them will be cast to the five winds in the hopes that their actions can set the world right... whatever that may look like.




Discord
Don't be shy! Join up if you're interested or even if you just have questions or would like to follow along.




🙡 Essential Lore 🙣
Here, you'll find brief explanations of the remaining essentials for this RPG. Read through this and you'll have a basic idea of what this is about and how it works. If there's something that you don't understand very well or would like to know more about, you'll find it in the next handful of posts under 'Advanced Lore'.







🙠 Advanced Lore 🙢
A full, in-depth breakdown of the lore and world of Sipenta, the twin continents of Constantia and Severa, and the Ersand'Enise Academy of Thaumaturgy can be found in the eight posts below.

Religious Lore: In the first post below this one, you will be able to find all guides related to religion in Constantia and Severa.

General Magic Lore: In the second post below this one, you will be able to find all general guides on The Gift.

Specific Magic Lore: In the third post below this one, you will be able to find all in-depth guides on specific schools of magic.

World Lore: In the fourth post below this one, you will be able to find all general and miscellaneous information about the world of Sipenta.

Specific Country Lore: In the fifth post below this one, you will find in-depth descriptions of specific countries.

School Lore: In the sixth post below this one, you will find all relevant information about the Ersand'Enise Academy of Thaumaturgy.

Lore Expansion: In the seventh post below this one, you will be able to find all lore derived from our ongoing story and directly pertaining to it.

Maps and Graphics: In the eighth and final post below this one, you will find all maps and graphics collected for your convenience.





🙡 Dynamic World Spotlight 🙣

The Hourglass Order is an ongoing RPG, and is set in the same continuity as the now-finished O R I F L A M M E. As such, it is a dynamic world with lore that is ever growing and changing. During any given posting cycle, at least a couple of new articles will be created. Those will promptly eventually be made available in the appropriate sections below, but will first be highlighted right here so that they aren't missed!

Under Religious Lore (Post 1)

Under General Magic Lore (Post 2):

Under Specific Magic Lore (Post 3):

Under World Lore (Post 4):

Under Nations of Sipenta (Post 5):

Under School Lore (Post 6):




🙠 Student Application Form 🙢

The Academy selects its students from among the best and brightest that the finest families of Constantia and Severa have on offer. To make it into these hallowed halls, you will have to provide a compelling case. Be it exceptional wealth, political clout, raw magical talent, or good old-fashioned hard work, you will have to have done something - at some point - to stand out. Otherwise, there are lesser academies for people like you. They aren't bad places by any means; they just... aren't Ersand'Enise. In addition to social, political, monetary, and ability factors, when assessing your application, our admissions council will take into account your understanding of the world, your ability to work with others, a balance between your uniqueness and ease of integration into our system, your literacy level, and your strength of character and dedication to your craft.







🙡 Welcome to Ersand'Enise 🙣



Hidden 3 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by Force and Fury
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Religious Lore















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General Magic Lore

















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Specific Magic Lore













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World Lore



















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The Nations of Sipenta
The Five Thrones






Other Nations












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School Lore














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Lore Expansion









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Visuals, Maps, and Graphics









Hidden 3 yrs ago 3 yrs ago Post by Force and Fury
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Honestly, not sure how I feel about her. The angst is reaching epic proportions.
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Honestly, not sure how I feel about her. The angst is reaching epic proportions.


I personally like her, I think Penny's great. My suspension of disbelief wasn't broken, nor even strained as I read through her CS, which means she's a believable character within the context of the universe and its lore.
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@Izurich Thanks. It's nice to have a second set of eyes to vet these things and I suppose that she passes muster. I was mainly worried because she's just so angsty. I'm not usually a fan of overly angsty characters.
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@Izurich Thanks. It's nice to have a second set of eyes to vet these things and I suppose that she passes muster. I was mainly worried because she's just so angsty. I'm not usually a fan of overly angsty characters.


It's a matter of taste, which is subjective yes.

As for archetype preferences, I don't like Joker(s) myself. I think that character archetype is trying too hard to be disturbing and psychotic that it ends up making them hilarious, in a a bad way if they're supposed to be taken seriously. But apparently, I'm a minority in this since it's pretty popular, the overwhelming success of the 2nd Dark Knight movie and the Joker movie as examples. So yeah.

In this particular case, I happen to like Penny, not speaking for anyone else of course.
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So, @Dark Light, do you want a sister? Because that CS is how you get a sister.
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So, @Dark Light, do you want a sister? Because that CS is how you get a sister.


Open to it
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<Snipped quote by Noxious>

Open to it


We shall see. There is a lot of new CS's and I definitely wont have time to finish mine up until tomorrow. Don't want to overload the RP or the GM with too many characters.
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okay, serious this time

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@SilverPaw That's a cool and compelling CS and is approved. Feel free to add it to the Character tab. Two quick question, though:
1) Who is Nazath in terms of your character and his importance in her storyline and the world? I'd lovve to find a way to work him into the story and have him fit organically into the world if I can. Feel free to respond here or DM me, if you like.

2) Are you on our discord server yet? We have about twenty people on there and not all go by their forum names, so it's a bit hard to keep track of. If you're not, feel free to join!

@Noxious No worries about your timeline. People will have until Friday night / Saturday morning EST to get CSes in and I'm pretty on top of things. It's all up to you in the end, but we'd love to have you and I encourage existing characters to occasionally have connections. That'd be awesome.

@SnickerSnacker DFKM fam. This is hilarious. Mallow is officially canon now as "that one obnoxious goose in the Arboretum that everyone knows and avoids." or, alternatively, "The Feathered Demon of Hedda's Lake."
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@SilverPaw
Noticed your character was learning Revidian.
Spend much time in Revidia?
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Up for review!

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