The Sisterhood of Aruvielle
Its namesake, Aruvielle of the Anaithsol, founded the Sisterhood. Aruvielle had a gift of foresight, and she sought out those like her so that she could train them to have better control of their powers.
The Sisters may be found anywhere from street corners, where they offer to tell ones future for a few pennies, to those who appear to be working for the service of a lord. It is said that they go where they will, when they will. They work for who they choose, not for who chooses them. They come to those who have need of them, the Sisters claim, and to refuse to listen to them at least is said to be a great cause of ill luck.
The Sisters use a clear, blue liquid known as the Milk of the Coming Day, to enhance their powers of divination. This liquid makes no physical mark on its user initially, but the repeated use of it satins the lips and nails of the user blue. This alone makes the Sisters easily identifiable. The Sisters are treated with a mix of reverence and fear by the general populace; reverence for their power, and fear for what they know.
The home of the Sisterhood is in the White Mountains of Pelthail. There, they live in an ancient Elven palace made from the same marble stone that givers the mountains their name. The palace is ancient dating back from before the Elves first war with the Arawn; long abandoned it is now home to the Sisters. The Sisters refer to it by its Elven name of Tanimura, but to all others it is ‘The Palace of the Prophets’.
New initiates are located by the Sisters, using their powers they know where and when these young girls will manifest and arrive to take them away with them, often arriving after the signs have manifested, and just before the locals become so afraid that they decide to action themselves.
Secrets of the Sisters
The Milk of the Coming Day is a fake. The Sisters do not require it to use their skills. It does however give them instant recognition wherever they go by the blue markings it supposedly leaves. The blue tint also gives the Sisters an ‘odd’ look, giving the impression that are not natural, an idea that they cultivate. The blue liquid causes no staining in reality, and the blue lips and nails are just waterproof dyes that the Sisters apply themselves. By simple removal of the Dyes they give themselves an instant disguise to pass unnoticed amongst the populace, gaining access to places and information that they may otherwise not see or hear.
They act as an enormous spy agency, poking into every corner of Arnor and beyond there is little that passes their web. When they work for a particular person, it is by their choice so that they can guide and inform to push events to their favour. They will state that they are working in the interests of the employer, but in reality everything is geared towards their own requirements.
They communicate through ‘Travel Books’, magical items created for Aruvielle by her Anaithsol brother, Ollathiar. A normal leather-bound book, little larger than the palm of a hand, complete with a stylus to write with. Each book was created with a twin, and what is written in one book appears in the other. Once written it can be erased using the stylus leaving no trace of the information behind.
The Sisters do not travel with any form of guard. They have created enough tales of terror surrounding what happens to those who do them harm they are not often required. To back this up all the Sisters are taught how to use ‘The Voice’. When a Sister speaks with the Voice, those who hear their words cannot disobey them. The Voice only acts upon men, it is ineffective on women, and on those who cannot hear or do not understand the language. They are forbidden to reveal that they have this power, and are not to use it except to protect themselves; no personal gain may be made by use of the Voice.
The magic of the Elven folk who once lived at Tanimura permeated and affected the building and its immediate surroundings, seeping into its very foundation stones. All those who reside at Tanimura know peace and always leave feeling refreshed after even the shortest of stays. The immortality of the Elves has also seeped into the fabric of the building and is passed on to those who remain here. Everyone that lives within Tanimura has their aging slowed by about a tenth of normal. Many of the elder Sisters here appear to be around fifty to sixty years old, but are actually ten times that.
The Depths of Tanimura
The Sisters have dug deep into the mountain that Tanimura rests upon. There are tunnels and rooms below and behind the building, many of them secret from the lesser Sisters. Huge libraries holding recordings of the most important prophesies from the gifted Sisters. Rooms containing rare items found on travels that are not meant for the hands of Man, or held until they are required.
Eventually, a long and winding stairway may be found that leads up into the mountain itself. It emerges high in the mountain in a hollow surrounded by sides of cliff walls too steep and high to climb. Within the hollow lies a garden and a residence, the residence of Aruvielle herself, long thought gone from the world with the other Anaithsol. The purpose of the Anaithsol was always to guide Man, and so Aruvielle still continues to do so from here. Only the Prelate of the Sisters, and her council of five know of Aruvielle’s existence, as she sits leafing through here book, the travel book that shows what is written in all the travel books so that she can watch and guide still.