In the first summer of a new age, the Heartwood council found themselves the unlikely hosts of three strange visitors: a trio of Tsol’aa intent upon finding special medical attention or spiritual healers. Carrying a stretcher between them, two villagers had hauled the comatose body of their community’s sage all the way across the continent in search of aid after this tribal elder had experienced a horrifying revelation in the penultimate moment of the Creators’ Monomachy. Explaining that she had screamed and then gone completely slack, the villagers pleaded with Voice Sysaa and Visage Sarkis in an effort to find some sort of aid that could heal her now completely vacant mind. Unwilling to abandon the woman to her terrible fate, the Sentaari Monastery agreed to take her in as a patient in their infirmary.
Upon settling her down in a bed, the Monastery quickly got to work trying to delve the Tsol’aa’s mind to discover what psychic damage had befallen her fragile psyche. Though it took several accomplished telepaths joined in mental union, the Visage soon managed to pry through the treacherous tunnels of the patient’s recollection. In so doing, Sarkis experienced a sliver of the frightful visions that the sage could no longer cease dwelling upon, alongside all the manifest terror of that moment. So terrible was her emotional turmoil that the entire monastery experienced inveterate backlash, bringing disarray and horror to all those that dwelt within its usually tranquil reaches. Concluding that the woman was trapped in a neverending loop of remembering some terrifying moment, the Visage requested that the guild devise a plan to assist her.
It was Brother Bast that eventually met with the Visage and outlined a possibility: pioneering a new branch of Telepathy not as well tested or understood than others, that would allow the mental masters to influence their patient’s mental state. Though Sarkis did not immediately approve of the plan, he and the rest of the guild ruminated upon it and eventually concluded that there was no better option if they wished to keep their word and see to the Tsol’aa’s recovery. All was quiet then for two weeks as the gathered experts of the Sentaari considered how best to push forward with this newly charted course, though this peace was soon shattered by renewed shrieks of agony and Voidborn terror as the sage’s mental state plumbed deeper depths. Deciding that they had little time to spare, the Visage organised a circle of telepaths that Brother Bast soon assumed control of, allowing the rest of the gathered adventurers to delve the mind of their poor patient.
Arriving within the mindscape of the Tsol’aa sage, those gathered Duirani and Sentaari alike feasted their eyes upon a scene of the once-Aalen’s ruination, its majestic foliage withering in symbolic tribute to her uncontrollable sorrow. Though many tried individual attempts at disarming this incredible depression, it took the combined forces and reasoning of all those assembled to eventually convince the woman to let go of her all-consuming sorrow. Upon doing so, a wave of serenity rippled through her psyche and touched upon her mental visitors, leaving a bridge deeper into her mind in its wake. Though many were reluctant to press forward on account of the strange hallucinations and sinking feelings that struck some of the youngest amongst their number, the Sentaari and their allies soon agreed there was naught to do but proceed apace.
Deeper within the sage’s mind, the adventurers discovered a scene of beloved heritage and cultural celebration tinged with near-maddening levels of joy. This, too, was a feeling that required tempering from the party’s collective. Some spoke on their duty to Dia’ruis and its sobering necessity, while some remarked upon the ancestors and the pride they would feel if someone remembered to revere their culture in more sombre manners. Ultimately, these efforts once more yielded fruit, ensuring that tranquility once more reigned in this section of the Tsol’aa woman’s mind – and in so doing, they found that the path once more led deeper into her psyche.
Unwilling to linger here lest they risk being caught up in the frenzy of unabating joy, the adventurers ventured deeper yet still and happened upon more concerning signs of madness. Setting foot now into a hall of mirrors cut to cast all images in unflattering manners of self-disgust, the council set about offering encouragement and inspiriting dialogue that the woman initially resisted hearing out. Small creatures born of the Void’s terror bubbled up from the murk of her imagination, necessitating violent force as a brief interlude between more gentle solutions. Eventually, the adventurers again managed to convince the woman to let go of her self-hatred and found a way deeper into the heart of what madness remained.
Next was the sage’s terrible anger – an anger pointed outward towards a world that had failed the Aalen, the Bloodwood, the scoured reach that once was an ancestral homeland of her people. Unable to cure its blight, unable to lay its spirits to permanent rest, unable to prevent Ohlsana’s ravaging predations, the woman felt only rage towards everyone too selfish or concerned with their own machinations to see to the healing of a wounded land. Though the council’s Monks understood her frustration, they urged her to let go of this burdensome wrath and embrace tranquility so she could return to the world make the difference she asked of others around her. Duiran’s councilors were forced to execute more miniature Void terrors, their dispersal bringing about yet more cultivated calm – and a yawning darkness that beckoned the adventurers for one final time. As the councilors assembled in the deepest, darkest places of the sagacious Tsol’aa’s mind, they glimpsed the true nature of the memory that had sent her into terrified catatonia: a peek deep into the abyssal Void itself.
As Duiran stared into the Void, the Void stared back.
Countless tendrils of darkness sprouted from the landscape of the sage’s mind then, conspiring as one into a legion of tiny terrors and one tremendous being of Voidborn hysteria. Rather than attempt to reason with this primal manifestation of fear, the council swiftly took up arms and joined battle with a nebulous memory of a space without substance. Though several warriors fell in the attempt and had to be ushered back into the Tsol’aan woman’s mind by a barely conscious Brother Bast, the council eventually succeeded in quelling this final representation of overwhelming emotion and departed from their intrusive journey within their patient’s psyche. When the final councilor managed to find Primal physicality once more, they one and all realised that the sage now slept peacefully – the first sign of a convalesence begun. In the aftermath, Brother Bast admitted to the Visage that his own vantage point leading the mental link had allowed him to glimpse these memories in a different way. Confessing that he thought they would be useful for the monastery as a whole, he promised to impart what he had learned and congratulated the entirety of the monastery on pioneering a brand new form of psionic manipulation: emotional Cultivation.
So it came to pass that the way of the Voidseer became a formalised practice within the Sentaari monastery. Employing the occult esoterica gained by their delving of the Void and the tranquil mastery brought about by sagacious enlightenment, they unified these disparate schools into a fierce new way of life emblematic of abyssal madness.
Penned by my hand on Gosday, the 7th of Omeian, in the year 1 AC.