Patroned by Serachel the Lord of Deception and Ashur the Great Dragon of the Void, the Coven of the Shunned is unashamedly dedicated to evil, corruption, subjugation and destruction. While occasionally compared to the Raiders of Twilight, the Coven is unique in its lawful methodology and strict adherence to internal expectations and codes of conduct. While other houses often ignore or disregard failed applicants, the Shunned is notorious for its persecution of those who have been found unworthy. While all houses show little quarter for betrayers, the Shunned hunt and execute them with a ruthlessness that is only matched by denizens of the Void itself. Fanatical beliefs and unswerving allegiance are hallmarks of the Shunned, and unity is prized among its membership.
The Coven of the Shunned is also sometimes referred to as The Collective of the Eternal and The Halls of the Knowing. It is based out of the Halls of the Shunned (Warning: may contain spoilers).
The structure of the Shunned is more well-defined than that of other houses. Instead of having a single group of PCs who share the same powers and responsibilities, the Shunned has two: The Black Vanguard and the Silver Pentagram. The Black Vanguard is the warrior sect of the Coven, which is often tasked to defending the Halls, defending the Pentagram, and the enforcement of policy. The Silver Pentagram is frequently tasked with more esoteric plots, usually including a more magical focus. It is important to note, though, that despite times of strife within the Shunned, both sects function best when working in concert with the strengths of the other.
Both the Vanguard and the Pentagram's membership are overseen by a Council of up to five members. Much of the time, there will only be one or two PC Council members, but it is not unheard of to have most if not all of the seats filled. The Council of the Five consists of the Dragon, Raven, Keeper, Siren and Scorpion.
The Coven of the Shunned has a long and storied history, and its many notable parts have intricate webs of relationships and events. Because of this, giving a concise history is difficult or virtually impossible. The origins of the Shunned are strongly intertwined with Serachel, the Lord of Deception. A timeline of eras is possibly the easiest way to give a broad overview, and the following table shows the progression of the Council over time:
Note: Please feel free to update or add to this list so long as it includes no currently living PCs.
The Black Vanguard
|Soul Reaver||This spell enchants a weapon forged in the Halls of the Shunned to gain power when its wielder lands the final blow in a PK. The corpse of the fallen foe can then be sacrificed, the process of doing so adding to the hitroll and damroll modifers on the weapon.|
|Mantle of Fear||The bread and butter of the Vanguard, this power reduces the skill percentages of other PCs in the room with the Vanguardsman. An echo indicates to the room that this power is in effect, but the most telling sign is that speech in the room becomes garbled even when the speakers have mastered the language.|
|Enslave||Like dominance and charm person, enslave serves a similar function. Like dominance, enslave has a low success rate and will frequently cause the target to attack the caster. It is often used on weaker mobiles, but can also be used on slightly stronger ones if that mobile has been heavily injured.|
The Silver Pentagram
|Coven||This power is cast upon another member of the Pentagram sect to boost the effective spell level of that character's spells. The effects of multiple members casting Coven on a single caster stack.|
|Rune of Eyes||Like many other room-affecting spells, a rune of eyes is placed where the spell is cast. When the caster activates the rune, they can see and hear as if they are standing in the room where the spell had been cast. It should be noted that not all languages can be understood or persons seen through the rune.|
|Shroud of Nyogthua||Like the void templar power globe of darkness, this spell removes all light from a small radius of rooms. Unlike globe, however, all coven members can see in the room normally. There is no indication to the caster when this spell's effect ends, and the duration is somewhat short. This spell's effect can be countered by the spirit templar power radiance.|
Joining the Shunned is not for the faint of heart and has historically fostered mature themes. Many participants in its designs do not walk away unscathed, and application should be carefully considered before being undertaken.