The History of |
The following is how I, Hubert, remember what had led to our current state. Others may have a different view or additional stories.
Twas the dawn of a fascinating time. Word of newly discovered lands had crossed Britannia. A noble guild known as the Burning Heart, which consisted of honorable people following the virtues of the Avatar, had long been following these stories. There was word of lost lands to which there were secret passageways from Britannia. Some of the Burning Heart began to explore these areas. However, the leader of Burning Heart, Daylar, had heard of another land called Norrath. Daylar felt the Burning Heart's destiny lay in Norrath and that the guild should eventually leave Britannia.
In an unrelated event, Daylar became possessed by an evil spirit hoping to take over the guild. This led to some attacks on other members but eventually the threat was eliminated and Daylar was saved. Having been upset by this episode, Daylar made a final decision concerning Norrath(September 10, 1998): The Burning Heart would leave Britannia and all members who wished to remain Burning Heart would have to follow him to Norrath. Although some chose to join Daylar in his journey to Norrath, many stayed behind in Britannia as they felt there was still work to be done there or were not willing or able to leave Britannia as it had become their home.
But the Burning Heart did leave Britannia and the former members of the Burning Heart remaining there were left in a state of shock. An emergency meeting was held and moderated by Cernus Greyfox to decide what was to be done. All at the meeting agreed to join together to create a new guild. As many members were adventurous in nature, travelling to other realms was almost inevitable so it was decided that in this guild, no one person, even the guild leader, could claim that the guild could not exist in one realm or another. After a few choices for names were considered, the name Eternal Flame was agreed upon.
After a vote was held, the great Dragonfire was elected as Guild Leader and Mincho was the Assistant guild leader. Dragonfire was known from the Burning Heart as someone who was always around and always helping someone. So naturally all thought these were great qualifications for a guild leader. Dragonfire was devastated by the break up of the Burning Heart and vowed to make the Eternal Flame what the Burning Heart once was in Britannia. Mincho was a good assistant leader and was responsible for the creation of the first Eternal Flame Pub in which members could discuss issues relating to the guild.
The structure of the guild was decided and the Divisions of War, Peace, and Knowledge were created. All looked promising for the new guild. But more difficult times were to follow.
Once the guild was created, it ran into several problems. Lack of activity caused several members to leave. A few members ended up leaving the guild to join the Burning Heart in Norrath. Mincho himself resigned from the guild and appointed Jektal as the Assistant Guild Leader. The membership was dwindling.
Then in the first few months of its existance, the Eternal Flame ran into the most difficult problems it has ever had. Participation was low and the chat room was almost always empty. But the worst of the problems was yet to come.
Ironically, Dragonfire, known for his reliability, had not shown up for a few weeks. As guild structure provided, the assistant Guild leader would take over when the Guild Leader was unavailable so Jektal took over the meetings. Jektal kept things in order but soon he was entirely disappointed with the low guild participation and left on a journey of reflection to assess what should be done. In his place, he appointed me, Hubert, as Acting Guild Leader.
Needless to say, I found leading the guild difficult with such low participation. However, something had come up that required immediate attention by all of the Eternal Flame. Lord British had mandated new laws concerning house ownership. These laws required certain conditions that could be met only by Dragonfire himself. Daylar had turned over all Burning Heart property to the Eternal Flame when he left Britannia. Dragonfire had possession of most of the master keys to these buildings and he was guild leader so he would have priority over any house claim. Many members put claims on buildings to which they had duplicate keys but Dragonfire had the master keys. I put great efforts into finding Dragonfire but it soon became evident that Dragonfire was lost. To this day, Dragonfire has never returned and no sign of his existance has ever been found.
Obviously something had to be done. Unfortunately, although the Eternal Flame held possesion of its tower and keep(both structures which had been standing since the earliest days of the Burning Heart in Britannia), it lost several houses to insignificant outsiders who had collected keys from long ago. Members, in a state of shock realized it was too late to act and that we had to live with the consequences of their inaction. Alas, there really was not much that could done as our guild leader had disappeared.
So the guild held another election for guild leader. At this time Jektal returned and resumed the post of Assistant Guild Leader. Moondrake was elected as the new guild leader. Having been an assistant guild leader of the Burning Heart, he was well respected by all members for his wise and virtuous ways. This change of leadership signalled a new age for the Eternal Flame.
Even though the Eternal Flame lost several buildings to the new laws put in place, those laws led to great things for the guild. The outsiders were unable to maintain the buildings they stole and they soon decayed and were replaced by new buildings owned by the Eternal Flame. The guild decided that it would open up either the Tower or the Keep to the public. Jektal proposed that the Keep be chosen although some argued that its distance from the city of Yew and dangerous monster population would not draw enough people as compared to the tower. The Keep was converted though and became a tavern for weary travellers to rest in their travels.
With the new tavern at the Keep, the Eternal Flame finally established a presence in Britannia and the guild became more well known. Its first new members were recruited 4 months after it's creation. These would be the first non-former-BH members of Eternal Flame. The guild's membership was growing.
In the following months, more members were added to the Eternal Flame's roster. The Keep became a safe haven for those travelling in the area. Also members of the guild that had no homes of their own were content to make the Keep their home.
As the Eternal Flame became more established in their home shard of Great Lakes, members began exploring new realms. A small group of Eternal Flame members chose to leave for the land of Norrath to start a new branch of the guild there. I, Hubert, was appointed by Moondrake as leader in this realm. The group was small however and had difficulty getting the guild established in Norrath.
Initially, Eternal Flame established itself on the world of Norrath known as Fennin Ro where it once again encountered the Norrath branch of the Burning Heart. It was great to see all of the former guildmates again. But, once again, Daylar chose to move the guild to the world of Norrath known as Innoruuk. As we were drawn to our old friends, the Eternal Flame moved to Innoruuk as well.
After 6 years in Norrath(6 months Earth time), the Eternal Flame had gained enough members to make itself an official guild there. By this time, the guild had gained a few valuable new members who helped greatly with establishing the guild in Norrath. After the guild became official, I led the guild for 3 more years in Norrath until I felt a pull back to Britannia. As I spent less and less time in Norrath, I felt the affairs of Eternal Flame in Norrath should be handled by someone who was present in that land more than myself. I turned leadership over to the Assistant Guild Leader in Norrath, Hefe.
Meanwhile in Britannia, having plentiful funds yet nowhere to expand in the Great Lakes shard, the Eternal Flame felt it needed a new cause and decided to expand to another shard of Britannia. Having heard there was plentiful land for the taking on the Siege Perilous shard, the Eternal Flame entered that world and began raising funds to create a presence there. Soon they would realize why so much land was available in this shard.
With a new goal to strive for, the guild did well in this difficult world. Finances were difficult here as prices for all items including buildings were much higher. In addition, the land was swarming with foul murderers and unvirtuous beings. However, enthusiasm was great as the guild worked toward its common goals. Led by the Assistant Guild Leader of Britannia, Thascales, the guild eventually obtained a small field stone house and a guildstone and placed them in the small area south of Yew(the same area that the Burning Heart tower was located in Great Lakes). However, that area was inhabited by a vicious Orc clan called Shadowclan.
Eternal Flame, having just started in this land, found that progress was slowed by being too close to the orc guild. Despite possible signs of peace, the orcs' constant attacks on the guild and demands for tribute continued. Although the growing guild was still not completely shielded from the foul beings of the land, the house was moved far across the continent to a place between the cities of Minoc and Vesper. Here conditions improved and progress was made. The house was soon accompanied by a second small house helping reserve the area for the future construction of a larger buildings.
Having branches in multiple realms, the guild continued to expand and thrive.
The guild continued to grow and soon sent explorers to the world of Dereth. Dereth was very different from Britannia or Norrath. Unfortunately Eternal Flame never was able to gather the numbers needed to form a presence in this realm and soon efforts to start the guild in that realm failed.
In Norrath, the guild grew and thrived. Advancing in experience the guild was able to explore the lands further and conquer more and more difficult evils. However, over time a rift formed between the members who were able to advance more rapidly than other guild members. This rift, caused by the nature of Norrath, eventually grew to an intolerable level and caused an exodus of members away from Eternal Flame. The guild lost a great many members and went into another Dark Time. Eventually the guild would rebuild but it would be a while before it regained its former glory in this realm.
Things were more calm in the shard of Siege Perilous in Britannia. The two houses were taken down and replaced with a large 2 story building. This building allowed much more storage. Also, when the neighbor to the west moved out, a small tower was constructed as an annex to the guild building. Vendors were set up in the main building and brought in much profit. However, guild participation dwindled to only a few members who maintain the vendors and property. In the shard of Great Lakes the Keep and Library were maintained by dedicated members.
In another attempt to grow to new realms, a few members attempted to start a guild presence in a new world. This world was separated into three realms: Albion, Hibernia, and Midgard. Unfortunately, although the guild proclaimed Albion as its home, members were still split on which "realm" to settle in. This led to disorganization and failure of the guild to make a presence. The Eternal Flame never was able to establish a guild in this world.
Undaunted by the failures of expanding to new realms the Eternal Flame expanded into a very different realm called Rubi-Ka. The technology of Rubi-Ka was far more advanced than any of our previous realms. Weapons and armor based on nanotechnology and machines that flew replaced the swords, magic and horses of the other realms.
The Eternal Flame flourished in Rubi-Ka. The guild made a great presence with many new members joining. The clans of Rubi-Ka stood against its currently ruling government run by the Omnitech corporation. The guild stood on the side of the clans and made several alliances. The Eternal Flame caught the attention of both the clans and Omnitech in their fight for freedom.
Meanwhile in Norrath, the guild came to life again and soon achieved the ability to visit the Planes of Norrath where many of the major dieties resided. Hefe turned leadership of the guild to Falidaar, an incarnation of Garlon Kaer the Ancient One. Under Falidaar's leadership many members joined the guild and another time of expansion in Norrath was at hand.
However, the nature of Norrath once again split the guild and lead eventually to the end of Eternal Flame in Norrath. Those of planar capability saw an opportunity to expand the guild by merging with another guild of similar characters. Though the ethics of the two guilds were similar, those in Eternal Flame who were not familiar with the members of the other guild feared the loss of Eternal Flame's identity when absorbing the large number of members from another guild. Arguments between members about whether or not the guild should merge became heated and eventually lead to several members leaving the guild. Sadly one of the members leaving was Falidaar himself.
After Falidaar left, Johaan became guild leader. The guild lasted for a long time after this but unfortunately never regained its former glory. The Eternal Flame eventually ceased operations as a guild in Norrath(August 2002).
In Rubi-Ka, Eternal Flame continued to flourish under the leadership of Atilius. Though a similar phenomenon to the one seen in Norrath existed in Rubi-Ka(but to a much lesser degree) the guild suffered no mass exoduses. Over time the activity in Rubi-Ka diminished as word came of a great civil war being fought in another realm far far away.
The technology in this new realm was similar to that of Rubi-Ka and travel amongst the stars was needed to explore its different worlds. A great empire ruled by one consumed by a dark force sought to control all while a small group of rebels resisted that control. Having left other realms, the Eternal Flame chose to reunite in this new realm. As former members returned from the many realms inhabited by the Eternal Flame, a destiny of future greatness could once again be felt by Eternal Flame members.
That is how I remember it. Of this guild, a culmination of much effort and patience, I find myself a humble member. I have great respect for all that have put their efforts into making this guild what it is today.
Hubert,Grandmaster Mage, Britannia
Former Adventurer of Rubi-Ka, Norrath, and Dereth