by Grant Smuts
— a run-down of the major players in Where the Gods Lie Dreaming, starting with the protagonist faction – The Order of Saint Audren
The Order of Saint Audren
Ronan Solidor: The 38th Hierophant of the Order of Saint Audren. Ronan Solidor was originally from the continent of Duringard, traversing the Shining Sea in his youth to escape the civil war that tore his nation apart. Joining the Order soon after his arrival, he quickly proved himself to be a capable warrior with a natural talent for strategy. His swift ascent through the ranks did not go unnoticed, and he was made Hierophant before his fortieth birthday, making him one of the youngest Hierophants since the days of Yearne Halleth. After fostering a knight-errant approach to the Order’s activities (by which the Order affirmed their position as warrior-heroes), Ronan Solidor has, puzzlingly, recalled every knight on the continent back to the Tower of Dedication. His reasoning for this is currently unknown.
Brennius Levren: The Aide of the Hierophant, and the man who has stood by him during his ascent. Brennius is Ronan Solidor’s oldest friend and confidante. He is however, known to have vocally dissented against Ronan’s Policy of Recall, and is thought to be conducting missions in secret.
Caradan Volte: Head of the Mage’s Division and archmage as officially recognized by the Synod of Ruhnd. He is well-versed in Academy politics, and seems to know everything that happens in the city of Valharrow and beyond. A scholar first and foremost, Caradan disregards morality as convenient metaphysical claptrap, but is often the first to spring to the Order’s defence, recognizing its logical place as the only power that could counter the overwhelming power of the world’s Academies. He is rumoured to have devised a new form of magic, one that is used in rudimentary form by the Havarr in Duringard.
Jaina Fury: Head of the Rangers’ division. Officially recognized as the world’s finest archer, Jaina Fury is absolutely dedicated in her pursuit of excellence. Strong willed and fiercely loyal, she stands by the Hierophant’s Policy of Recall, even as her peers dissent.
Azarel: The famed warrior of the Order of Saint Audren, known as the Wolf of Valharrow. He is considered the Order’s finest swordsman (and thus one of the finest swordsmen in the world), though he claims his brother was always his better. He has forsaken his last name, believing that the Order is his new family.
Grayden Vhael: A child of Geharan descent, joining the Order in his youth, seeking purpose. He is haunted by strange dreams of gods and other worlds. He is treated with wariness by the other members of the Order, who believe the popular conception that those of Geharan descent are cursed. A quiet, introspective young man, consumed with melancholy.
Garrett Lonsell: Youngest son of the Lonsell family, Garrett is a gifted mage and self-professed ladies’ man. Always quick to quip and quicker to get in trouble, his skills are often enough to see him through any adversity.
Maiev Shale: A young woman with a desire to prove herself. She is haunted by a curse laid upon her family, going back generations. By joining the Order, she hopes either to dispel it, or to rise above it.