No Mercy for the Tremere - An Alternative Schism War

This is an exercise of Hermetic Alternative History about the Schism War.

The Point of Divergence is the timely arrival of the Ex Misc Primus to the emergency Grand Tribunal at the beginning of the Schism War, when the issue of the Diedne-Tremere infighting is to be decided (Lineages, p. 41). The pack of proxy sigils that the Ex Misc Primus carries throws the decisive vote in the favor of the Diedne, that are absolved of all accuses of diabolism and human sacrifice. The Tremere are harshly punished for having broken the peace of the Order and bound to peace with the Diedne. The Tremere Primus refuses to heed the sentence, accusing the mages that voted for the Diedne of having fallen prey to their "corruption". House Tremere is Cast Out for having started a war against another House and having endangered the Order. House Flambeau, always eager for a good fight, House Guernicus, reluctantly seeing the need to sacrifice a House to save the precarious unity of the Order, and House Tytalus, eager to redeem their disgrace, join the war against the Tremere. House Ex Misc and Merinita support their Diedne allies. House Jerbiton and Mercere secretly provide some covert aid to the Tremere, but refrains from official support. The other Houses mostly stay out, even if several mages join the fight on an individual basis. After much fighting, the order vanquishes and exterminates the Tremere (even there are persisting rumors that pockets of Tremere escaped and took refuge in the most remote corners of the world) through the decisive efforts of the unlikely Diedne-Flambeau alliance (and secretly, through dark Guernicus rituals).

What happens next ?

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What could happen?

Not a lot: The Order progress as known, only with Diedne in the place of Tremere.

A lot: The differences between Latin and Not-Latin Houses have not been decided (been a very strongly hinted cause for the war too) and another war is brewing.. the Order struggles and reforms or shatters completely. Maybe even in twice hostile orders - Latin/Not Latin, Christian/Pagan).

Another lot: The Order with the powerful and paganity proclaiming Diedne finds itself rather sooner than later in conflict with the church and their mundane allies.

A small lot: When Crintera, domus magnus of Birna calls for aid against the invading christian danish king help is allowed.. see above.

Let's face it.. with the survival of pagan champion Diedne the Order would probably face more (or sooner) difficulties within and without. Imho. :smiley:


But a complete different alternative history: What if the Miscellanae votes would have enforced "peace"? Unity and punishment of the participiants on all sides?

Difficult to say 8)

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Cool stuff.

For the last bit, I think it might escalate into full warfare pretty soon regardless of the Primus Ex Miscellanea's votes, perhaps with more drastic results since the order would be very much divided.

It might even get the attention of the Church early on, perhaps allied with one or two houses (Jerbiton and Flambeau?) but likely with its own agenda in the end - assimilate or eliminate.

Different alternate history. The Flambeau stand up and do what's right, wiping out the baby eating Diedne and the wanna-be vampire Tremere. Without the unifying force of the Tremere, the Oder of Hermes dissolves into little more than a public forum where wizards blow hot air (kind of like the UN :laughing: . They stop administering the Oath, each House is now its own separate order with its own oath.

Since the oath has degraded the Thebian Tribunal has no qualms about defending Constantinople with the full force of it's magical power.

Without the gold plundered, western Europe remains in the barter system.

Thebes, seeing the near sack of The City and inept leadership of the royal family rallies together and takes over the mundane empire. A Mercure decedent of Theseus is made Magus King, his near insane Merinita wife persuades him to instigate "The Purge".

The fall of Constantinople was caused by backstabing Byzantine politics, and the Jerbiton magi could have easilly ben caught up in it. Without a unifying Order, the Jerbition might fracture along mundane political alliances.

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The second sack and looting was over payment of the army. Easly solved with a lvl 20 ritual to poo some gold :stuck_out_tongue:

The army sat outside the city waiting for it's payment, they got ancy and wanted loot and a latin king.

i added part duex a fraction of a second before you posted

That's cool :smiley:
Glad that someone realizes the mundane political angle in that situation though! Most tend to gloss over it and distort what really happened in the 4th crusade.

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In 1195 i think is when the king is blinded and thrown in the dungeon, his brother i think... Then the brother takes over. There is rioting and Constantinople falls into anarchy for a while.

The son of the imprisoned king or someone who married someone related to the imprisoned ... persuades them to get his kingdom 'back'. They take the city and await payment while taxes are levied.

Since the Oath has degraded we now face a full magical war over ressources and spoils. Once there were feuding and single wizards. Now we have warring and partly organized Houses.

The 4th crusade never leaves Venice. It is much too busy warring and crusading within europe. The war is all devasting. Rome is destroyed.

After this pre timely 30 year war House Jerbiton emerges together with some Mercere and Quaesitoris (basically all with the gentle gift) as a new, small and nationalized Order of court wizards of the church (stingy) tolerance.
Among the north and in regios few embittered and hostile not-new-Order magi remain.

When the barbarian forces move in from the east, europe is much too weakened to resist. Meanwhile without Tremere Byzanz has spread and desperately tries to hold its own against the east.

When the inquisition start in full force the sun sets on the last of the magical orders. The dark ages commence until a new and magicfree age is born.

See how important the Tremere are now? No Tremere, the Order collapses into chaos.

Remember it's not the Holy Roman Empire and Byzantium... there was no Byzantium, they were the Roman Empire.

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Well.. :wink:

Sloppy of me, you are right. The correct name is Roman Empire.

In such a case, which ideas championed by the Tremere would become socially ostracized in the Order, instead of druidism ? Hierarchy ? Atheism ? Latin/Christian exclusivism ?

A less structured Order, more sympathetic to paganism ?

A second war is the outcome I regard as most unlikely. A Schism War that casts out the Tremere already settles the conflict between Latin and Not-Latin Houses, since the place of the latter in the order is placed beyond question and Latin bigotry becomes taboo.

This is a rather more plausible outcome. Which could be the casus belli ? And the features of such a conflict ?

The Order against the Church :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

So the relative decline of the Bjornaer is prevented and they are a little less paranoid vs. the other Houses and Mystery Cults. However, I doubt this would lead to a large-scale conflict with Christian Europe. The Danish king's forces are swatted and go home with tails between their legs. Many times, the forces of Christian kings were defeated by pagans or muslims, this likely gets drown in the background noise of history.

Seeing magical resistance, the Danish king recruits his court astrologers and alchemists, some of whome have preserved the secrets of Rune Magic. A resurgent Order of Odin supports the Danes and obliterates the Bjornaer magi.

The latter for certain. Maybe even agressively. Though that would lead to trouble with Flambeau and maybe Jerbiton.

Mayhaps. Like always it would depend on your set and setting. If we assume your pov from here ( ... a63400256e) the divine might even loose and a powerful pagan pantheon might rise to shape the mythical world anew.

Btw my pov about the divine in ars magica is similar: Not absolute but in power, relativ power that is. In the end this solves a lot of trouble and inconsistencies for me.

I would just like to share that we may be very wrong indeed about the lack of monetary trade during medieval times. Or at least that's what several of the authors I'm currently studying in High Medieval History I are currently debating, alongside the controversial idea of a "barbarian invasion" and the Great Dominion.

I for one was very surprised, and have been enjoying the classes very much.


I'll run with this, starting from the Ex Misc arriving to vote for Diedne. That's a reasonable point of divergence.

The Tremere, not being stupid, realize that they are outvoted and back down.... officially. But individual Wizard Wars continue.

Because the Schism War never happens, House Guernicus never gains the power it now has. The Order is more chaotic.

This spillage has a profound effect on mundane history. A more chaotic Normandy Tribunal means that Normandy is more chaotic. William the Bastard does not consolidate his rule and organization sufficiently to mount an effective invasion, especially since magi in Britain feel more comfortable intervening against an unwanted interloper. It's an ugly battle though. The pope approves of the invasion to bring England more in line with the party line, but the locals can bring their own influence with the Divine to bear. Magi fight on both sides, and William is repulsed.

The First Crusade never gets off the ground because Norman and Frankish knights are way too busy at home. Without a First Crusade, there isn't a second, third or fourth. Because the crusaders never put pressure on the Saracens during the 12th century, Constantinople remained vulnerable and was sacked by Saladin in 1187.

Flambeau magi pursue their own interests--fighting either against Diedne or against other diabolists, by which I mean their traditional Saracen enemies in Iberia. Because the Order is fractured, charges of interfering with mundanes are impossible to sustain. The Reconquista is going well and only the kingdom of Granada remains in Muslim hands.

How do things stand now? The Order stands on the verge of a real Schism War. Jerbiton, Tremere and Flambeau are clearly on one side; Diedne, Bjornaer and some Ex Misc traditions are clearly on the other. Complicating matters, everyone knows about the Order of Hermes. Opinions within the Church regarding what to do about it are conflicted. The Diedne are clearly a problem that should be cleansed, other magi are disturbingly pagan, yet others are obviously Christian, with appropriate sympathies. Should the Order as a whole be condemned as foul sorcerers, or should a joint Crusade be declared against pagans and heretics? And, with the power of God-fearing magi on their side, if it can be allowed that perhaps some magic is natural rather than sorcerous, once the pagans at home are dealt with, perhaps Jerusalem and Constantinople can be liberated? So far there has been only talk.

Meanwhile, the Diedne have not been idle. They and their allies are supporting Lithuania and other pagan kingdoms under threat, thereby decreasing the threat.

Europeans are less developed than they would be in real history. They did not spend time in Saracen lands and did not bring back what they didn't learn there. Sea and land trade routes are more dangerous, and the development of a strong, centralized monarchy has been inhibited.




So you admit that the Diedne were diabolist :wink:


I am representing a Flambeau perspective