Born and raised in the shadow of the greatest library in the realm, it was only natural for Firos to seek out greater and greater knowledge. When the world turned to Darkness and his home was destroyed by the undead, Firos fled. A life of hardship and hiding ensued for years, until the darkness was banished from the realm, for the time being. In wake of this, the young scholar began to seek out the knowledge to understand this darkness and how to prevent it from returning.
The Whispering Stone
High atop the mountains of Orrostar, Firos stumbled upon a strange blue stone during his travels. When he moved to inspect it, the stone leapt into the air, propelled by an unknown power. Before he could theorize what magic had possessed the stone, a voice spoke to him, claiming to be Arcanis, Lord of the Aether and the Space between Worlds. Nuggets of knowledge were bestowed upon him, all of them connected to the Aether and Arcanis. But the voice disappeared in a matter of seconds, leaving Firos with more questions than answers. He decided to set up a small lab underneath the stone, in hopes of discovering more about this ‘Aether’.
His devotion to his research began to consume his mind and body. The stone still whispered to him, but he could not understand its words. Although he had discovered much, far more remained to be found. He sought out the assistance of nearby dwarves, exiles of their own people. Their resources and their fortress, Azangathol, proved useful for a time. That usefulness was ended swiftly, when the Gods brought Azangathol low, leaving Firos to abandon his study and the stone.
Without a study to further his research, Firos was left to wander, haunted by the words of the stone. During his travels, he visited many towns and villages, offering his knowledge for goods. During one of these ventures, a rift tore through the world, threatening mortals once again. He was hesitant to take up a sword, but he saw this as an opportunity. If rifts were what he theorized them to be, it was the perfect time to observe world’s merging together. He delved deep into the unnatural landscape, seeking out anything that could be useful to his research. In the center of the rift, he discovered the Dark Gem, the only one in existence to his knowledge. After taking this gem for later experiments, Firos committed himself to creating a proper laboratory to conduct his research.
Firos’s research grows more and more perilous by the day and his secluded lab reflects this. What once was a normal laboratory is now turning into an abomination that looks as if it belongs to another world. Lightning flashes and light erupts from the strange structure, but Firos is nowhere to be seen.
Firos has completed extensive research on Aether, but he continues to explore the strange substance, going to further and further lengths to test it. His research has been compiled in several journals, which are the results of plenty of experiments.
Shorthand, his findings have led him to believe that aether seeping into the world through ‘rifts’ and tears in the fabric of reality is the cause of many ‘magical’ devices and objects. Aether acts as a ‘thread’ that is designed to hold worlds together, like sewing a quilt together. When the fabric is torn, aether seeps through and attaches itself to anything in the world.
Tears in this fabric are caused by a variety of things, but the most notable are rifts, forced tears caused by Terth, at the behest of Arcanis. Past rifts, natural tears occur throughout all the worlds and many tears are forced open by mortals, unbeknownst to them. What mortals refer to as ‘portals’ are actually aether gates, passageways that allow temporary traversal of the aether and by extension, the space between worlds. As distance and time are an ever-changing reality in the aether, it allows for ‘instant’ teleportation.
Aether manifests itself in all forms of matter and each state of matter has a different effect depending on how it is utilized. Unlike other substances, aether does not assume a form based on temperature. The reason for its various forms remains unknown.
Aether typically assumes a crystalline form when it is solid. It is mostly inert and is found embedded in rocks. Outside of their appearance, they are nothing special. Their utility is great however. Aether crystals act as a storage unit for condensed aether, making them strong conduits for aetheric power. When aether crystals are applied to an object, the aether will seep into the object and alter its properties. This process of applying aether to objects has been referred to as ‘enchanting’.
As a liquid, aether is a glowing, blue-green fluid. It resists all forms of mixing with other liquids and does not react to extreme temperatures. Although it is extremely buoyant, floating above water when placed with it, it is viscous. It is nearly impossible to see through liquid aether.
Unlike crystal aether, liquid aether cannot be utilized directly to ‘enchant’ various objects. However, upon consumption, it seems to amplify the results of any enchanting.
As a gas, aether adopts the appearance of a thick mist. It is not flammable, toxic, or otherwise harmful. It is heavier than air, but not so much that it collects on the ground. Like liquid aether and crystal aether, it seems to adopt a form fitting for an unknown purpose.
Experiments with wildlife revealed that exposing creatures to aether mist imbued those creatures with special properties, much like enchanting. These properties were temporary however. The properties varied greatly, from running faster or jumping higher, but none of them yielded a negative side effect. After countless experiments, I constructed a device that is able to harvest residual aether in an area and project it over that area. It requires a fair amount of resources and it does project a beam of aether mist into the sky. I decided to call the device a ‘beacon’.
The Dark Gem has been the subject for many tests, but results have been poor at best. It radiates an aura of darkness and is capable of absorbing the light of any light source placed near it. Past this, experiments are inconclusive. The Dark Gem does not seem to have an effect on living creatures, but prolonged exposure has not been tested.
As a researcher, Firos has come in contact with many powerful and strange objects.
- Firos’ Bottomless Bag – A result of one of his first experiments with Aether. His bag, which was holding shards of crystal aether at the time, became enchanted shortly after. It now holds even more, making it appear bottomless. (Shulker Box)
- Dark Gem – A strange gem found at the heart of a rift. It bristles with unknown power and unending darkness. (Nether Star)
- Eternal Timepiece – The hands on this clock spin far faster than normal. Upon inspection, it only tells the future. (Clock)