Aegis Kai Doru
Oh, this? Worthless. Ten a penny. I keep it for… sentimental reasons.
Does the tomb treasure of Akhenaten, heretic pharaoh of Egypt, still exist? Or the looted treasure of Troy? Or the golden chains that once bound Zenobia? Or the tomb of Gilgamesh? The Guardians of the Labyrinth know. They are the Aegis Kai Doru, the Shield and Spear. They believe it has been their business since before history began not only to guard the magical treasures of countless lost worlds, but to use them against creatures of the supernatural realm, against whom they still nurse an ancient grudge.
Once, they say, every one of their number could use magic freely. Even then, they were the custodians of a vast labyrinth in which the greatest magical treasures were kept. A quarrel turned into a war, and one faction ejected the owners of that ancient maze from the island. They made plans to return, but the cataclysm came too soon, because — so the Aegis Kai Doru believe — the shape-changing people broke an ancient taboo and brought down the wrath of heaven and the spirits. The isle sank. The exiles were joined by other exiles. But they did not forgive. They blamed the disaster on those who had cast them out, and began to wage war using the few relics they had taken with them. The others had destroyed paradise, they said. That could not be forgiven.
More than a thousand years later, they had forgotten their own magic and had become the Aegis Kai Doru, the Shield and Spear, after the treasure of Troy (which some of their number absconded with when the city fell). The relics were theirs to keep and, when necessary, use to protect those people who suffered at the hands of callous witches and hungry ﬁends. They maintained this purpose through the ages of Greece and Rome, the Byzantine Empire and the Renaissance, the Enlightenment and the Modern Age, all the time seeking out those objects that it was their right to protect and use.
Guardians active in the Chicago area include:
• You own at least one relic, and you have experienced the First Initiation into the Secrets of the Aegis Kai Doru. You have the option of spending Merit dots to gain the custody and use of the Guardians’ Relics.
••• You’ve spent so long doing research that it’s second nature to you. You get +1 on Academics-based dice pools pertaining to relics and archaeology.
••••• You’ve experienced the Second Initiation; your senses don’t work the same way. You begin to be able to sense the old enemies of your sect. You gain the Unseen Sense Merit, applying to mages (or, if you already have it applied to mages, to werewolves. If by some freak circumstance you have both, you can apply the new Merit to any one other kind of supernatural being).
Many different conspiracies exist within the Aegis Kai Doru, each with a different purpose.
The Sword upholds the Vow, to the letter. They nurse the old grudge, speciﬁ cally seeking out workers of magic and changers of skins and kill them. What does it matter if thousands of years have passed and they know nothing of the grudge? That’s not the point. The point is, a vow was made, and they must be destroyed. They’re militant and proactive, often wading in when other Guardians hold back. They’re also the most numerous and inﬂuential among the Aegis Kai Doru’s hunters.
The Temple guards the relics that give the Aegis Kai Doru its power, also attempting to locate those relics that have been lost. Often, seeking relics becomes so important to the members of the Temple that it gets in the way of the Vow. The Sword tends to look down on the Temple, but recognizes that without them, there would be no Guardians.
The Scroll keeps records of the items of power that the Aegis Kai Doru protects and uses. They test new ﬁnds in the ﬁeld, learning how to use them and taking note of their properties. They’re also the keepers of lore on the Guardians’ enemies and their weaknesses. If they’re not as committed as the Sword, it’s because they often have a better idea of what they’re facing.