Cabals of Maryland
(( TO BE EDITED ))
The Major Cabals of Maryland
Originally a small coven of mages taken less seriously than their more established rivals from the District of Columbia, the Historical Society has recently gained a large influx of mages and influence in the Consillium of Baltimore in the last century. Over the centuries, the artifacts and lore hidden within the colonies had been uncovered and confiscated by the fledgling mage consillium formed after the formation of the colonies to assist in the battle against the British and other enemies.
As the new country began to flourish, dissent began to form throughout the Awakened community. The hierarchy of the Awakened began to be undermined by the new democratic processes of the newly formed American government system. This system, oddly enough, appeared around the same time that tensions began to rise between the north and the south.
Though a Yankee state in the war, Maryland’s involvement in the civil war would begin a small shadow war between the Awakened community to follow for years.
As recently as 1934, the Historical Society began to make more proactive moves within the Baltimore and Greater Maryland regions. From undermining the influence of the Disciples of Washington and their new mentality (the precursers to the Free Council) to picking up newly Awakened mages and teaching them of the old Atlantean orders and the ancient hierarchy of the diamond, the Historical Society began to consolidate it’s assets while limiting the effectiveness of more progressive Free Council thoughts, excavations, and actions.
In the years between 1953 and 1987, the actions of the Historical Society began to bear fruit. With the Free Council looking to expand it’s influence, the Historical Society began to utilize various tactics, of various moral quality, to remove the Disciples of Washington from Maryland entirely. Though they were not able to do so, the influence of the Disciples of Washington has retreated to the areas primarily surrounding the District of Columbia.
Since then, splinter cabals have formed from the coalition of the Historical Society, but the core group remains. It’s influence is substantial, and the desires of the cabal itself influence heavily the actions of the Consillium and the Awakened community in Maryland.
The primary agenda of the Historical Society, as its name may suggest, is to identify, catalog, and collect as much evidence of Awakened life as understood by both the colonists and the Indian tribes who called this land home. Despite the seizures of the original Awakened governmental structure, several hundreds of sites still lay intact under the very foundation of modern Maryland.
These endeavors have bore some fruit so far. Several tomes have been unearthed from hidden libraries, powerful artifacts found in sanctums long buried or locked away, and hallows long closed now re-opened. The Historical Society attempts to keep most of the artifacts it finds under lock and key, but will often reward other cabals for their assistance in matters of interest similar to their own with a choice of the spoils. Not the first, of course.
The secondary agenda of the Historical Society is to maintain the focus of a more Diamond-like alliance of the Orders in the Baltimore Consillium. The Historical Society fears that a more progressive look at the Awakened community will threaten the very hierarchy that defines Enlightened behavior. While the Free Council are now tolerated by the Historical Society, relations with established Free Council cabals are still fairly shakey due to this belief.
As long as America had yearned for independence from Britain, as long as the colonists struggled to keep their fledgling nation afloat, and as long as the nation continued to establish itself as a power unto itself, by the people, for the people, the Disciples of Washington were there. Though not always called such, the Disciples of Washington are now one of the most wide-spread Free Council cabals on the East Coast.
In 1993, after the successes of the Historical Society over the Disciples of Washington, schisms began to form in the minds and beliefs of the Awakened gathered under the joint banner of the Diamond. While the Historical Society began to backpeddle on its severe anti-Free Council policies, some members of the more militant and strict orders began to boil under their collars. Why should the Free Council be tolerated at all in the Awakened community? What good is this theory of ‘technocracy,’ of ‘magic in the modern era.’ To them, it sounded like a plan rife with the ideals and faults that led mages to fall to the Abyssal entities, inviting the very Paradox mages endeavored to avoid.
The tensions grew between the majority of the Historical Society and the new dissenters, until the smaller group broke off in April of 1994 to form the cabal known as the Guillotine.
The Guillotine currently hold some of the more powerful militant members of the Atlantean Orders, bound to the ideal that the original hierarchy of Atlantis must be upheld at all costs. However, even with these influential mages, their numbers are still low compared to that of the Historical Society.
Recently, the Guillotine has become quieter about their endeavors in Maryland. While most can chalk it up to some grandiose plan to protect the Diamond from outside influences, others speculate something else may be occuring. Whether it if the result of the combined efforts of the Guillotine’s membership, or from yet another small sect inside this splinter, no one knows, and few inside have openly discussed these matters with the other cabals.
This has not stopped their involvement in the Consillium, however. They still hold an active interest in the political landscape of Maryland, and intend to keep it that way.
The first order of business, to no one’s surprise, is minimizing the influence of Free Council cabals in Maryland, to include and focus upon the Disciples of Washington. The Guillotine takes the beliefs of the Historical Society a step farther, associating the beliefs of the Free Council with the theories of misguided youths, the ‘downtrodden,’ and those that scorn the mystical powers naturally imbued into the Atlantean hierarchy. To believe in the theory of the Free Council is to believe that the principles of Atlantis are obsolete, spitting in the face of the past Awakened who paved the way for the Free Councils existence.
This subversion takes aspects in many forms, from non-violent protest, to the classical mage’s duel between two opposing parties, culminating in full encounters should the members of either party be agitated enough. This tends to earn the Guillotine some animosity, to which Ozymandius normally responds. He believes that it is for the greater good of the Awakened community that the Free Council be mitigated, if not removed, to preserve and empower the Secrets.
The second agenda is to mitigate the occurrence of Paradox and Abyssal influence within the lands managed by the Baltimore Consillium. Guillotine mages are often the first to respond to the violent Awakening of a new mage within their domains, as well as any drastic occurrence of Paradox they can identify. Many a mage has been removed for the transgression of the most basic of Awakened laws; do not reveal the Secrets to those Asleep, less you taint Supernal knowledge with Abyssal sympathy.