Postfest III: Jaran Krimeah, Exalted Mage of the Vale
Date: Sat, December 11, 2004
Topic: Rogue's Gallery

Laird of the Valley of the Mage, Exalted Prominent member of the Ring of Five. Few (if any) can make the claims of surviving a failed coup of the royal throne in the Great Kingdom. Fewer yet, to lord over the lands of the elves, gnomes, and dwarves of the Vale of the Mage. Feared throughout the Flanaess, respected within the confines of the Vale, that few dare enter. All spies of the Great Kingdom be warned!

Jaran "The Black One, The Exalted Mage of the Vale" Krimeah
By: Duicarthan
Used with Permission. Do not repost without obtaining prior permission from the author.

Historical Record:
The enigmatic Black One, also known as Jaran Krimeah was born into House Rax in 406 CY within the city of Rauxes. Being of noble birth and of asurable wealth, Jaran was schooled in the best magic schools money could buy. He attended the University of Rauxes and even attained a private apprenticeship at the Royal Wizards Academy.

By the age of 17, Jaran Krimeah had already graduated from the Royal Wizards Academy and the University of Rauxes. At which time he became the apprentice of the most powerful wizard in Aerdi at the time, Schandor.

At age 19, the brilliant young wizard Jaran became the youngest wizard to attain the status of royal court wizard. During this time, he quickly learned all about the inter-workings and politics of the Great Kingdom, a dislike he quickly developed. Two years later, he managed to halt an asassination attempt to the throne. Uncovering that House Naelax lie at the center of the subtle plot. following which, the enraged magi teleported himself to Eastfair and begins systematically eliminating the royals of House Naelax.

After he returned to Rauxes, the King accused Jaran of the murder. Prior to the final verdict, evidence came forth that the Naelax nobles had conspired against the king himself and Jaran was set free. Following this foul error of justice, and sensing the kings faltering power, Jaran began preparing a coup of his own, fearing that the king would merely flounder his hand and lose his kingdom to the Naelax nobles.

In 435 CY, Jaran Krimeah at age 29, was proclaimed the Mage of the Great Kingdom, the youngest archmage ever. Immediately thereafter, the flamboyant archmage engaged in his plan for his personal coup. Employing most of the elite army and a small detachment of the Guard Companion he enters the palace, only to be thwarted by the works of the Web and his very own apprentice. Jaran was captured and imprisoned for several months. After these months of torture at the hands of Hextorian clerics, Jaran confessed, under a zone of truth, that his coup was to prevent House Naelax from usurping power from the throne and eventually taking over the country.

In 436 CY, Jaran is released from prison by his cousin, the king, who informs him to never return to these lands or be slain on sight. In secret however, the king planned to have him pardoned in his absence and return to fight the House. Nevertheless, due to his poor treatment, the torture at the hands of the Hextorian clerics, and the previous indiscretions of the king, Jaran had no reason to ever return, much less to trust his own cousin, who let him suffer so horribly. Jaran scarred, both mentally and physically then gathered what few possessions he still had left and left the Great Kingdom adopting the name, "The Black One", to disguise his true identity to would-be assassins. From there, "The Black One" traveled the Flanaess and ended up in Niole Dra to heal himself and further his studies. Upon leaving Niole Dra, Jaran began to explore the Flanaess. Eventually, he found work as a court wizard in the Bandit Kingdoms. That is until he believed agents of the Aerdi crown had pursued him. Leaving the Bandit Kingdoms behind, he began adventuring, in search of defensive spells and refuge from the unending spies of the Great Kingdom. He stayed as far away from anything, place, or anyone associated with them. Finding his way from the Bandit Kingdoms, the Horned Society, Furyondy, Keoland, the Shield Lands, Veluna, Sterich, and the Yeomanry.

Yet, forever haunted by his past he became obsessed with magical defenses against scrying and defensive spells, often casting an alarm spell each night before he slept. Using adopted aliases and magical disguises Jaran concealed his identity to all but one, Zagig Yragerne. From the multitude of planes and various channels of arcane magics, the name of the Black One had traveled to the Archmage of Greyhawk. As such, Zagig entreated him to join a new underground society devoted to arcane magic and research. A group known as the Ring of Five. Incredibly honored, though precautious Jaran agreed to join this" Ring of Five", under the name of the Black One, as a wandering wizard of the Flanaess. It was not until years later, around 452 CY that Jaran found himself in a concealed valley, nearly surrounded by the Barrier Peaks. A valley so isolated and defensible, Jaran chose it as his home. In less than a year, the Black One won the favor of the valley elves, gnomes, and scattered humans of the vale. With the assistance of the valley elves, dwarves, and gnomes, he quickly set up physical and magical defenses at the entrance to the valley and throughout the Barrier Peaks. Then established watches of every race and even charmed monsters to patrol the valley. Even though all of these races are autonomous, they still claim the Exalted Mage as the Laird of the Vale.

It was during this time that The Black One met his lover, Tysiln San, an exiled female drow, who stumbled into the Vale as he was setting up his defenses. Though it took many years, Tysiln found a way to earn Jaran's trust and a way to his heart. Jaran and Tysiln have been together now several years and have a working/understanding relationship. Both work to keep invaders and outsiders who might ruin their homeland. Jaran himself, though he takes many risks keeps several pieces of skin saved so that Tysiln might be able to clone him should he be slain in battle, and the reverse is also true.

The Black One, though feared outside of the Vale and known by many names throughout the Flanaess, such as The Exalted One, The Black One, Mage of the Vale, etc. The denizens of the Valley of the Mage consider him a kind and generous leader.

Jaran Krimeah, using a portal from his mansion or his dwarven keep, often spends weeks on the Plane of Shadow holed up in his research laboratories. When he is not there, he is often off in search for any powerful arcane magic. Often placing himself in danger by plane shifting to dangerous planes or by teleporting to the lairs of powerful creatures to garner lost arcana. The denizens of the vale worry about the Exalted One's harrowing trips, fearing that someday he will not return, but they realize their pleas for him to remain in the valley will not prevent him from pursuing such goals.

Is he the rumored Shadow Sage who sent out letters to every mages guild some 30 years ago?

Jaran Krimeah is 5'9 tall and weighs 150 lbs., in his true form. He has grayish-pale olive and veiled slate grey eyes. He appears to be 50-years-old, with dark brown hair falling over his shoulders. He is always clean-shaven and tends to smirk when plotting something insidious. The Black One dresses in black robes adorned with gold trim, and wears many magical items and apparel at all times. The Mage of the Vale can assume a plethora of disguises using his spells or magic items at will, often favoring a valley elven or dryad form.

Jaran Krimeah often scrys upon his enemies or uses illusory guises when dealing with outsiders. If he is attacked he relies on his spells for combat and defense, avoiding melee at all costs, as he considers it crude and risky. Jaran has mellowed over the years, but underneath his care for the denizens of the vale lies a ruthless spellcaster. Jaran will not allow himself to be killed or taken alive by anyone, he will attack to kill or disable. Favoring maximized versions of his evocation spells if necessary. If endangered he will find a means of escape and send his followers to destroy the offenders while assailing them from a distance or in secret, then disappearing into the night. Jaran often uses the epic spell eclipse when he knows the valley is under heavy assault, as he did during the assault of the giants several years ago.

Several years ago, prior to the Greyhawk Wars, Jaran began to frequent the Vale less, and began his search for a way to cheat death. In 591 CY, he finished his research and became a shade, so that he might continue his quest for powerful magic items, spells, and knowledge.

In recent years, the First Protector has allowed exiles of other lands who enter the Vale of the Mage as prisoners to be tested and then if proven worthy they are given work and a home in the Vale. Jaran though wary of this, supports, Tysiln's ideas while he toils away within his citadel on the Plane of Shadow. One such exile now resides in the dwarven keep, an exiled Bissel necromancer by the name of Nyeru Darkspring.

Jaran Krimeah, Male Shade Human Wiz22/ArMa4

Image by Rick "Duicarthan" Miller

This article comes from Canonfire!

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