- The King's Protectorate
Shadowtails are one of the major professions of Tikor and perhaps one of the most feared. Are they misunderstood masters of the shadow? Or assassins for the crown?
The exact origin of shadow invocation is still a mystery. Some researchers have said the originators wanted to stay anonymous, not wanting to be associated with the dark art they had created. The most cited rumor is that it was an invocation gone wrong.
A young and inexperienced invoker attempted to channel elements beyond his ability and, in a twist of fate, tapped into an unknown void. Whether it was by design or accident, someone could successfully and repeatedly invoke from a nameless void and gain abilities by doing so.
As with any standard invocation, channeling a higher being’s Etherforce brings supernatural abilities and more. However, the shadows are a bit different because it’s not a singular being or element that you are tapping into; it’s a plane. The void exists both within and outside of the world humans know. Some have described it as feeling like an invitation, or others have said a challenge.
Either way, the shadows are not like elements that let anyone powerful control them, nor are they gods that need to be served and pleased to allow invocation of their massive Etherforce. No, the shadows choose who they allow into the void. The criteria are unknown though many whisper that the umbra picks only the wicked. Shadowtails say those rumors are simple jealousy over being denied a power that whisperers wanted so badly to obtain.
Sometimes when I'm in the nothingness, it feels like those living shadows, the Shadowcats, are just watching me, waiting for a mistake so they can pick my bones clean. The shadow realm is not your home, no matter how quiet it may be— Unknown Shadowtail
All invocation comes at a cost; it’s just the nature of channeling a cosmic energy through the mortal body. Naturally, drawbacks to shadow invocation were completely expected. At first, it was the standard effects such as fatigue and nausea after repeated invocations.
However, as the art grew within the Ilun Valley's shade, a heavier price was to be paid. Rumors of creatures the hue of twilight spread across the Valley. One witness described hearing what sounded like the roar of a large cat as they watched a helpless victim be pulled screaming into their own shadow. A new type of creature was found in the darkness. Shadowcats.
Restricted by Daylight
These dark ambushers would plague the night and dark corners of the Valley for years. Finally, in 1780 D.A, a young shadow invoker confessed to The Divine Order of the Phoenix what the other shadow users had secretly known for years. That high-level Invocation can break the barrier between worlds, giving the horrific monsters the ability to swim in the shadows of our world.
After learning the deadly secret of Shadow invocation, the King had the art banned throughout all of Garuda, with the punishment for breaking the law being exile or death. Some of the greatest Celestial Shield across Garuda and The Holy Armada was brought in to find and exterminate all the remaining Shadowcats.