The Kogian Five are (besides
Eluda’shi Lashmara) the most instrumental
individuals in the establishment of the
Marmarran Citystate, each of them
epitomising a facet of the Marmarran
psyche. Each of the mavericks (besides the ‘tragic’
Kijuur Destius) also founded their own Kogianate dynasties, which produced a
whole manner of other experts and eccentrics in their respective fields. The
three men (Kijuur Destius, Lyrias Meurtian and
Hiartun Rarkan) and two women (Yian Tisare and Mila Venraius) that made up the
original Marmarran elite have
been forever immortalised for their vital contributions to Citystate that we
Lyrias Meurtian, adopting the personal title of ‘High Sorcerer’ at his peak, earned his place in history as the magically engineered Kogian - acknowledged as the third classically great mage in Marmarran history (being ranked below Eluda’shi and Kijuur). Attributed with being the main force behind the Gaishen magic system, as well (under the Witch Queen’s tutelage) developing a keen understanding of ‘Eludian Sorcery’ (which involved somewhat ambiguous practices e.g. necromancy, disease creation and mind puppetry). As the Kogian who was feared the most by the general Marmarran public due to his unsavoury affiliations, Lyrias’s name is still to this day synonymous with danger, pain and terror (mainly due to his investigation into his fabled ‘Torture Magic’- a still to this day ambiguous branch of Gaishen Magic, as the name suggests, involving the infliction of high levels of physical and mental distress).
Image description. The Third Kogian Lyrias Meurtian in front of the Broken Woods. Picture drawn by Bard Judith.
Lyrias himself was characterised physically by one main trait- his physically
premature aging. Legend has it that Lyrias’s numerable, self-damaging escapades
during his Gaisho experiments caused his body to deteriorate at a rate beyond
his years - leading him to look more than a decade over his numerical age.
Everything about the brilliant man’s visage exuded age, from his inalienably
thinning (and predominately balding) hair and scalp to his withered, pallid
complexion and incongruently wrinkled skin. For such a socially commanding,
innately strong (and arrogant) figure, Lyrias was physically quite frail. In
physical dimensions, he was significantly underweight and below average height.
Due to an almost life-long aversion of physical work (or exertion of any kind),
the man was not far from a walking skeleton- his choices in fashion, categorised
by their tightness and unsightly accentuation, did not by any means flatter his
Known predominately for his bemused yet fierce expression, embellished by his almost ethereal eyes (renowned for their unnatural red gleam), Lyrias had a very mystically menacing look to him. His fashion sense was also highly reflective of his disposition, generally preferring grotesquely dark hues in leather-craft suits. Rejecting the classical concealing ‘cloak’ aspects of affluent Marmarran dress, Lyrias’s clothing showed him for what he was - his obvious thinness only expanding his intrinsically creepy character.
Personality. Lyrias was known for his cold and obsessive demeanour. The man’s primary priority was his research - he would work days, even weeks on end without rest in order to perfect his concepts and models. Lyrias himself had no real interest in matters of ‘love’ (his only heir being luckily conceived after few attempts). For all intents and purposes, his love was his work; his wife and child taking second place on the priority ladder. Though this, at a glance, is a terrible character fault, it would prove to be one his major strengths. His innate duty of care to his magical pursuits endowed him with an incredibly potent ability, attaining a level impossible to those who pursued (in his opinion) fragile social constructions such as ‘marriage’ and ‘affection’.
As would appear to be a shared trait amongst the Kogian, Lyrias was hugely demanding and highly critical. Mercy was not a part of his vocabulary and he deemed failure the greatest insult he could receive. Though his general dislike of other people resulted in periods of undisturbed (desired) solitude, those that did have the misfortune to work with Lyrias were always extra-vigilant, ensuring they behaved themselves for fear of (characteristic) reprisal. Being a man who had practically invented his own esoteric means of torture, Lyrias was most definitely not a man who it would be wise to cross (masochists excluded of course).
Biography. Birth and Early Life (2354-2342 b.S.). Originally a Kimban, Lyrias was born into perhaps the most loquacious and vibrant of the Citystates, a place of residence fundamentally incongruous with his nature. Though by no means from a poor background, Lyrias did always seem to have a penchant from luxuries (which would not seem to have been transferred into adulthood), something that his politically active parents could not generally afford. Even in his early pre-teen years, Lyrias was already a maverick, being a highly accomplished mathematician as well as beginning to study "The Motions of Nature" (a classical Zhunite interpretation of Krean metaphysics) and what is now known as "Classical Kimban Numeric". After developing a fascination with the ‘natural mechanics’ of magic, Lyrias was immediately captivated by the City’s arcane schooling institutes. As such, at a high price, he was admitted at age 13. In the very same month both his parents fell terminally ill. Both died months later within days of each other.
‘Conventional’ Magical Schooling (2342-2339 b.S.). After only three years within the school his prominence as a student of talent was profound. Though by no means the most popular or sociable student, his raw talent and meticulous execution of the art made him a favourite of his tutors. Around 2339 b.S. he began to show interest in the limits of magic. In fact, he thought that it what was well within the limits of the arcane to revive his deceased parents. He quickly developed a dangerous obsession, somewhat neglecting his mainstream education, sublimating a lot of his energy into ideas of necromancy. After his ‘unhealthy’ interest in such taboo concepts, the school took dramatic measures. He was, despite being the most capable student, expelled from the school, making him homeless.
Studies at the Broken Woods (2339-2329 b.S.). Still fiercely pursuing his ambition of finding a way to revive his parents, the young Lyrias ventured into perhaps the most forsaken region of the entire Zhunite realms - the Broken Woods of Zhun. His intention was to study the (up until his research) ambiguous ‘dark forces’ of the woods. Within his first few months the maverick was able to make distinction between varieties of spectres found within the woods, one type particularly taking his interest. The Gaisho spirit appeared to have some mystical worth, Lyrias’ assessment of the entity’s unusual energy leading him to dedicate around a decade to their study. His compilations on the beings, in conjunction with Eluda’s knowledge of classical Krean magic, would eventually form the Gaishen magic system (a dark hybrid of spiritual, physical and mental manipulation) of which Marmarra is still famed for today. It is thought also that the Gaisho have a derogatory affect on his mind, since after this point of his life he lost sight of his initial motivation - revival of his parents.
Flocking under the Banner (ca. 2325 b.S.). In this time period many of a similar psyche and outlook to the power-hungry Marmarrans requested to join the 'Marmarran Effort' as Eluda called it. Many were trained to be soldiers, though others with more valuable skills and higher levels of aptitude are given more affluent positions or were trained by Kijuur and Eluda. At this point, Lyrias Meurtian also arrived after his studies in the Broken Woods. He showed Eluda his work on the Gaisho spirits (and how he had learned to manipulate them). These findings impressed Eluda and she attempted to combine them (successfully) with Krean magic and the knowledge she found from the Inami ruins. This 'new' magic was of amazing power though only a select few showed ability to perform it (Eluda, Kijuur and Lyrias amongst them).
Life after Marmarra’s establishment (2315-2275 b.S.). Lyrias (and the three remaining Kogian) were given the soon-to-become famous Kogianate family estates as rewards for what they had given to Marmarra, and how they had been instrumental in its creation. Lyrias found a wife in the shape of Gayiana Shashana, originally a Cuscan. She bore two children of Lyrias’s, a son Jarai and a daughter Jenai. Lyrias, after working extensively with Eluda and his own subordinates to establish the Moor’shune sorcery academy, died age 81.
Importance. Lyrias, arguably, contributed most of what constitutes the Gaishen system to its creation. Though there is no doubt that Eluda’shi Lashmara was a superior practitioner of the arcane arts, most of her greater knowledge is not taught at Moor'shune, seemingly reserved for the highly privileged 'Thorns'. Considering this as the case, Lyrias is undoubtedly the father of Gaishen magic, regardless of where the credit lies in the eyes of Marmarran society.
From a political recognition point of view however, Lyrias and the hushed mutterings of "Torture magic" and other incarnations of nastiness where instrumental in procuring Marmarra the seat of fear they hold today in Zhunite relations. In culmination with the legions of magi his wisdom has spawned, Lyrias could be considered to be amongst the most important Kogian in defining who and what a Marmarran is, defining the in course of his lifetime a vast amount of what the ever-present Eye motif connotes.