A covenant of sedate magi located on an island off the southeast comer of Hibernia, this covenant rests on a ledge on the side of the cliff that entirely circles this isle. The only physical access to Cliffheart is a precarious path reaching directly out of the ocean, up the side of the island, to the windswept perch above. The major passion of the CIiffheart magi is excavation and archeology. They travel little except to investigate old ruins, a practice that is their main source of raw vis. They are rumored to possess magical artifacts of Atlantean origin. What is certainly known is that they have learned much about the Tuatha De Danaan, the ancient race of faerie-like people who once ruled the island and live on in secret communities.
Generally, CIiffheart is respected among the covenants of Hibernia. They are, however, strictly isolationists who pay little heed to the matters of the outside world.
Much to Cliffheart’s shame, one of their magi was recently revealed to be a diabolist. He escaped the Wizards’ March that was called against him and his whereabouts are unknown. An investigation by Quaesitoris has found no evidence of diabolism among the other magi of Cliffheart, but this disgraceful turn of events has led these magi to become even more reclusive.
Of a somewhat different temperament are the magi of Elk’s Run. Established only a year ago, the covenant consists of younger and more ambitious magi. Nestled in a large, isolated valley to the west of Lake Derg, it consists of a group of small towers surrounded by miles of pasture and fields. In a grove of trees to the west stands the council hall of the covenant.
It is widely thought that the wizards of Elk’s Run have been intemperate in establishing relations with the Norman conquerors of Hibernia. In their lust for territory and continental luxuries, they have, in some eyes, sold their souls and futures to the enemy who already is slowly clearing away the mystical forests, which have stood since before human memory. To others, they are merely taking the traditional role of the Order of Hermes, finding accommodation with whichever ruler happens to claim a land. Lately, Elk’s Run has been engaged in a series of disputes over claims to mystical sites. They wish to lay exclusive claim to certain areas far from their home, while other magi argue that only areas near the covenant may be reserved for one’s exclusive use.
The name means “red circle,” which is the symbol of this covenant. The eldest covenant in Hibernia, it has members whose ancestors helped Pralix fight Dav’Nalleous centuries ago. This Covenant of the Red Circle has gone through many changes in its history and has even changed sites several times. Currently, Circulus Ruber is located in southern Hibernia in the Galty Mountains.
It is a solidly built citadel, essentially one enormous tower, standing on a lonely rocky hill in the Yaelin Forest. On the outer limits of their territory, each tree is marked with a red circle. Inside this region, a living shadow stalks, and it is unwise to travel here without a guide from the covenant. Most Visitors wait at the covenant’s guesthouse on the edge of the forest until a guide comes for them. Those that venture past the red markings alone are rarely seen again, though certain physical remains are sometimes found.
Wendelhone, the Praeco of the Hibernian Tribunal, lives at Circulus Ruber along with several other aged magi. Approximately half the magi, however, are of a younger generation that finds Itself In a constant Ideological battle with the elder, ruling magi. This battle has sometimes left the confines of the covenant and has affected all the magi of Hibernia, for the rift between the generations is a deep one that affects all these magi’s decisions at Tribunal.
Decades ago, the founders of Ashenrise lived in a covenant in Wales named Tagelyn. Buried beneath the ground, the lower reaches of its caverns extended deep into the earth, reaching, perhaps, even to the lairs of demons. They lived in peace with the Welsh people and slowly matured as a covenant, though they were still young. Then the covenant from which many of the wizards had come, Blackthorn, turned against them. Combining magical (and perhaps diabolic) powers with aid from a Norman army, Blackthorn routed the magi of Tagelyn. The young magi were forced to flee to the edge of the world, the misty isle of Hibernia. In their flight, a magus and many grogs were killed or captured. Their tragedy was made all the more bitter when they realized that all along, Blackthorn had meant to take the caverns, and that they had used these younger magi simply to test the caverns’ safety before taking them for themselves.
Though Hermetic law had been broken, they had no legal recourse because Blackthorn controls the Stonehenge Tribunal. To this day, the magi are slow to speak of their sad history; their hatred for the Nonnan rulers of England and for Blackthorn has remained unabated.
They renamed their covenant Ashenrise, symbolizing what they hoped would be a rise from devastation. Indeed, they grew quite strong in numbers and knowledge, and they felt safe in their new home; but again, tragedy struck. This time, demons rose up out of the ground and nearly destroyed the covenant, slaying many magi, grogs, consortis, and covenfolk. One of their number, Caerus, was nearly overcome by diabolic influence, for which he was nearly executed at a special
Tribunal. Since the demonic attack, the covenant has reestablished itself, and the Tribunal has dedicated it to learning ways to combat diabolism and protecting Hibernia from devils. Caecus, however, has moved on and can now be found in ValNegra covenant in the Pyrenees.
Vigil, an Autumn covenant, has dedicated itself to keeping watch on the Order to prevent its fragmentation. It is renowned for the luxurious lifestyle led by its members and for the alternate theory of magic they have developed. The magi of this covenant are as enigmatic as the faerie forest in which they live.
The physical structure of Vigil consists of several low buildings surrounding an extensive network of gardens, all located in a large forest in the foothills of the Sperrin Mountains in northern Hibernia. This magical glade is glorified in several tales by Hibernian bards. The covenant is protected on one side by a faerie forest and on the other by an extensive network of animal scouts and guards. The grogs at Vigil seem inordinately happy and satisfied, perhaps as a byproduct of the peacefulness of the glade in which the covenant lies.
Probably through extensive use of magic, as well as a habit of treating redcaps very well, Vigil maintains a watch over the entire Order. The magi are very concerned about disunion, though so far they have watched much more than they have acted.
One possible source of disunion can be found within Vigil’s very walls: a new theory of magic. The magi are loath to spread details about this new theory, but they have entertained visitors from as far away as the Transylvanian Tribunal who wish advice on certain specific magical questions. Most likely, these magi do not want to share what they know for fear of adding one more source of internal change and conflict to an already shaky Order. Perhaps they are waiting until they have perfected this new theory so they can present it fully fanned to all the covenants of the Order.
A sturdy fortress in the Wickow Mountains on the east coast of Hibernia houses the three Flambeau magi who compose this covenant. These three firebrands engage in constant skirmishes with the Normans, who are trying to drive the clans of rebellious Irish out of the mountains. These mountain clans serve as an extensive grog base for Lombard and the magi work very closely with them in their military campaigns. A Hibernian Tribunal of warned these magi to stop interfering so directly in mortal affairs, but it will take more than warnings to slow their aggressive tactics. The Irish bards sing their praises very highly.
Famous (or infamous) for their rustic natures, these wizards are forest-loving, wild, untutored Flambeau wizards who have little appreciation for the pleasures of civilization and are intensely opposed to any kind of intrusion of it upon the mystical wilderness of Hibernia. Their relentless cause, which they bring up at every Tribunal, is to prevent the magical areas of Hibernia from being overrun by the cities and farms of the Norman population on the east coast.
They hate the covenant of Elk’s Run and do very little to hide their feelings. All in all, Lombard is a dynamic and unsubtle covenant whose passions are its sole guiding light.
A solitary and private covenant, which consists solely of the wizard Caefloron and his filii, they live in a large, walled garden filled with strange magical plants. He has granted only a few magi entrance to his home, and while their reports differ in detail, all include descriptions of outlandish plants of types unknown anywhere else in the world. His reputation as a master of plant magics is virtually unchallenged within the Order, but little else is known of him. His guards and scouts are short, swarthy people who apparently have their own community within his walls. Perhaps they are faeries or members of a forgotten race.
Caefloron always sends one representative to the Tribunal, but they often abstain from all but the most important votes.
A once powerful covenant, which fell. It is protected by strong illusions and is rumored to have a powerful magical bell.