The History of the Erudites
Through my own experiences, I have gained knowledge and insight into the Erudites.
Each part of this history tome can only be completed in its own time.
When one realizes in the course of events that one's surroundings are unable to provide the necessary solitude for research, one realizes that the only option available is removal to a distant locale. Preferably an isolated area, free from unwanted intrusion.
Gathering around him those of similar persuasion, Erud led a group of his disciples across the sea to Odus. While not perfect, the isolation was perfect for our purposes. We managed to eradicate most of the indigenous species that would interfere with our research.
We built the city of Erudin in a form of homage to the one who led us to this oasis from the intellectual desert of Tunaria. The design was elegant and clean, not cluttered with the furbelows favored by the elves. An uncluttered space allows the opening of one's mind.
Time is not counted when one is lost in thought. Have you ever been deeply engrossed in a philosophical tome only to realize that the risen sun was now setting beyond you? That is how the days were spent in Erudin. Long days of contemplation and blissful solitude.
Somewhere during this period of tranquility, a subsect had obtained access to arcane knowledge commonly known as necromancy. These injudicious Erudites turned to Cazic-Thule for learning. Seeking knowledge is preferable to ignorance, yet some things should not be learned.
Unable to convince them of their errors, the erudites of Erudin cast these Heretics out. The Heretics chose not to return to more appropriate branches of learning. Instead, they waged war against Erudin, using the perverted arcane arts to unleash a torrent of horrors upon our city. Obviously unable to control themselves, the Heretics released powers greater than they could control, blasting the lands and creating The Hole. Realizing they could not win, yet unwilling to admit their errors, the Heretics constructed a city within the devastation: Paineel.
What we now know of Paineel comes long after its destruction. For yes, once more the Heretics sought to unleash a power they had no means of understanding or containing. What dark evil they awoke, they will not say, but the Heretics were forced to rebuild Paineel elsewhere.
Age upon age drifted past, a time of gloriously deep thought for the erudite. Undisturbed by outsiders, we endeavored to increase our considerable knowledge even further. Our minds were free to explore uncharted depths within and without. Some learned to travel through space by the force of thoughts alone.
In this era of most profound intellectuality, we learned deeper, higher meanings to things encountered previously. Hours could we spend staring at a single element, focusing ourselves until we could break it apart with our minds, reducing it to even smaller elements still.
In and through our minds and veins flowed this increased awareness. There is nothing more relaxing than to consider a mote suspended in a shaft of light and knowing of what the mote is made and how one can recreate it into other fantastical shapes.
In time, our studies began to manifest themselves outwardly upon our own persons. When one has the knowledge to bend and reshape the smallest of elements, why should one not use this to one's advantage? We experimented further. Through the judicious blend of meditation and incantation, we are able to layer upon ourselves physical manifestations of our intellect. We practiced first with simple geometric shapes, and through our research extended this to runes that glow with inner power.
By this time, we had nearly forgotten the outside world even existed. If it could not be experienced through the mind, it had no place in our lives. And then first to one, and then to another, Quellious appeared in dreams, speaking of the cities of men. We had long since rejected Qeynos as a place of infidels, noisy and crowded. Yet, the Word was given that we should return there. Very likely, these simpletons needed to be shown that higher intellectual power is possible, even for them.
Those who trusted to the Word arrived none too soon, for our ship had barely docked at their primitive outpost when the earth beneath us trembled and rolled. For many long years the earth shook violently, finally tearing Tunaria (that which the humans call Antonica) apart. Obviously, we could not live amongst the noisy, filthy riffraff of Qeynos. As the world around them fell to pieces, instead of investigating and studying, they raced around shrieking! It was difficult to find any quiet place to work.
One of our bards wrote a song about how the screaming of the mortals found its way to Luclin, causing it to shatter like a wine glass before a soprano. It is an amusing tale, but unfortunately we cannot depart to Luclin to determine the exact cause of the explosion. It is quite frustrating; these townsfolk are quite boisterous.
In time, we solved our dilemma by removing to a more isolated area near the city and yet outside of its clamor. This is not perfect, we can still smell them, but it allows us some measure of sanity to continue our work. We understand some of the Heretics have made their home outside Freeport as well.