We now have a Guild Hall. I think the decision was fairly obvious in that the Daggerfall Overlook not only exemplifies the Guild's staunch loyalty to the Covenant, but it also fits the feel and atmosphere of Requiem in every way. What is that feeling? Why when one enters the halls and chambers of the Requiem Guild Hall does it just feel, right? Familiar? I intend to explore why in the following article. In the fashion of true role-play, this is OUR story determined by in game elements to be manipulated to suit our needs. Also consider that at one point, Requiem had a text based RP story arch albeit short lived, it did lay a lot of framework for the Requiem backstory and as such, it’s this backstory that will be referenced in the following article. This story no longer exists in the public domain, however if there is substantial interest, we may be able to resurrect it in some fashion.
Background: The ancient castle sits nestled and fortified in the province of Glenumbra in High Rock along the southeast coast overlooking the Iliac Bay. Built in 1E 2316 shortly after High Rock succeeded from the Alessian Order, the broad and solid castle has now stood for nearly two millennia. Housing some of the greatest Lords of Bretony, the castle has witnessed much of the politically charged wars that marred the end of the First Era. Being along the mountain coast, the commanding castle is protected by a 180 degree angle. The castle had been used for many different purposes ranging from base of operations during time of war, to personal retreat of powerful Breton Nobles. Even once as a dowry gift. Being in close proximity to Castle Daggerfall in the City of Daggerfall, the Daggerfall Overlook was even used as a fortification when King Anton I of Daggerfall fled Castle Daggerfall after the assassination attempt on his life. It's precisely due to its high profile and secure location that the Daggerfall Overlook has undergone numerous modifications (largely fortifications) and routine upkeep that allows it to maintain its "youth."
Requiem in comparison began with much less yet just as much turmoil. Each and every member of Requiem came together for their own reasons. Most of which experienced deep loss or lack of belonging. The Interregnum left the empire in ruins. Factions split and vied for control, infighting, remnants of necromancy, and Molag Bal's influence over Nirn ever increased, causing Dark Anchors to erupt from Coldharbour and ravage the land. All across the world, Mannimarco's Worm Cult harvested both Man, Mer and Beast and fed their souls to the Lord of Rape and Enslavement. Looking for asylum, many gravitated towards those willing to bring them into any sort of organization, even if it was for that individual's own personal gain. One such individual, a Redguard Templar that went by the name Mizzko, fashioned himself after a Warlord and set his eyes on the Ruby Throne as so many others vainly did. He brought many together under one banner and pushed his guild of followers into Cyrodiil. Rickter being a victim of the Worm Cult and barely making it out of Coldharbour, found himself in the company of this Warlord. His only goal at the time was to find his way back into Cyrodiil so he could find his family and was willing to align himself with anyone that could provide that for him. Unfortunately, Mizzko let his pride and poor judgement cloud any real progress. His guild was quickly caught up in a war they were ill prepared for. Furthermore, Mizzko left the leadership of the battles to his lieutenants namely, a highborn Breton named Holeigh who had no idea of the harsh realities outside of her highborn livelihood. She employed disciplinary actions that favored harsh and demeaning tactics to direct and threaten her men. It was not long before the combination of poor and largely absent leadership caused those within the guild to speak of desertion.
At this time, Rickter had risen to the rank of Officer and was doing his best to maintain the group at first because he knew it was his only way to gain access to the city, but later because he realized that this guild was filled with people just like him. They needed each other. The guild stayed together until one fateful day, they became entangled with another Warlord from the Ebonheart Pact. She was known as the Night Mistress and her band of vampiric mages were terrible indeed. Rickter had dealt with Vampires in the past but none so vicious and blood thirsty. Of the 500 or so troops Mizzko's lieutenant, Holeigh brought to the battle, less than 70 survived. Holeigh herself was drained of her blood right in front of Rickter's eyes. Rickter saved as many as he could and when they made it back to the Guild's base of operations, they found Mizzko drowned in booze and prostitution. Enraged at the sight, Rickter began reaching out to the guild's members one by one and plotted to break away from Mizzko. The news got back to Mizzko and he confronted Rickter in front of all the Guild. A heated argument ensued and it didn’t take much to become physical. Mizzko challenged Rickter to a duel for the right of his title of Warlord and Guild Master. The following dawn, Rickter met Mizzko on the open plains of Cyrodiil and both fought viciously for their lives. The duel lasted less than 10 minutes and in the end, Mizzko lay broken and lifeless at Rickter's feet.
The aftermath was solemn as Rickter was reluctant to assume command of the Guild. Many left to join other warlords yet there were a sizeable group that stayed by Rickter's side because the guild had become more than just a means to an end for them. It became about companionship and deep care. They left Cyrodiil behind and Rickter returned to Wayrest to build up his small band of followers. During this time, they involved themselves in a conflict with the Midnight Union, and obtained a powerful object called the Eye of Secunda. Requiem grew and grew. At first hiring themselves out as mercenaries. Their jobs ranged from obtaining priceless objects from dungeons, closing Dark Anchors, monster hunting, and caravan protection. When the great push to map out the wildlands of Craglorn became all the rage, the Guild aided the Star Gazers and subdued the great Aetherian Archives as well as conquered the ancient Ra'Gada Citadel of Hel Ra before finally braving the venomous catacombs of Sanctum Ophidia and foiling the Serpent constellation. Despite the fame and renown, Rickter never restricted or otherwise implemented any policies that excluded his followers. Having known the feeling of being lost, confused, abandoned, and damned, Rickter welcomed all. He worked with all. Warriors, Battlemages, Crafters, Assassins, Soldiers, and Explorers - anyone in need of a home no matter what their background was. After 2 years of steady and fruitful work, the guild saw their reputation grow and grow until their ranks swelled in number. Rickter always had his sights set on Cyrodiil however, and his closest Officers knew this. When the time came, they urged him to push into Cyrodiil once more to find what he had lost.
Requiem Acquisition:During the time of the Interregnum in the Second Era, the ancient Castle was granted to a Count by the name of Theodore Draven. When the Alliance War erupted in the Heartland, Count Draven was given command of the High Rock gate Fort Warden and named High Protector of the North. He had an army of Breton Knights and mercenaries who he took with him to garrison the infallible fortress. Fort Warden was the only way in or out of Northern Highrock and as such after few months of Count Draven's occupation of Fort Warden, Rickter and his band of adventurers arrived as they journeyed on their quest to the Imperial City. After checking in their gear and equipment at Fort Warden's Customs Authority it was Count Draven himself that coined Rickter's group as "Requiem" due to the unique blade Rickter carried. This sword had "Requiem" etched vertically on the blade in Daedric runes and as word of mouth spread about the sword, Rickter's group began to be referred to as "the caravan that Requiem came with." Because Requiem had races of opposing factions in tow, Count Draven had them remain in the keep until their identities could be verified as non Ebonheart Pact and Aldmeri Dominion spies. It was during this internment that the Ebonheart Pact made a large push through the northern Cyrodiilic territories. Once Castle Dragonclaw had been sacked, news reached Warden that a siege was imminent. Count Draven convinced the members of Requiem to stay and help defend the keep from the impending assault.
The assault came in the early morning hours of Frostfall 16 2E 583 and this battle was known as the First Siege of the Northern Highrock Gate. The Ebonheart Pact sieged Fort Warden's walls with all their might utilizing everything in their arsenal such as the Giant Tribes of Eastmarch. The siege was brutal with heavy casualties on both sides and lasted 3 weeks. Trebuchets fired great boulders of fire, ballistae fired bolts the size of men and pierced the strong stone walls, powerful sorcerers from the Ebonheart Pact summoned meteors that erupted from oblivion and streaked through the sky. Giants rammed the gates and crushed men by the dozens under their feet and clubs of war. Ultimately, being so far from support and a staunch to-the-last-man defense by Covenant defenders, Ebonheart Pact issued a withdrawal from the battle and Fort Warden continued to fly a Daggerfall Covenant banner. The final battle was fought in the Inner Keep itself and with their backs against the walls, the Daggerfall Covenant repelled the assailants and ran them down at the Warden Lumber mill. The price was heavy, and Count Draven himself was mortally wounded in battle. Most of the mercenary force under the Count's employ fled and less than half of the Daggerfall knights remained. Rickter himself slew the Giant Chieftain by piercing it's skull with his sword, Requiem's namesake, which broke due to the thickness of Giant's skulls. The Fort command was given to Sir Walter Gregory who in turn gave Rickter Count Draven's ancestral Ayleid glass sword, Aerondight, as thanks for Requiem's heroic deeds and selflessness in the defense. As Count Draven had no living heirs, and his life was saved more than once by Requiem in the continuous battles, he handed over the deed to the ancient Daggerfall Overlook Castle to Rickter as his final will. It would be another year before Requiem would be able to settle into the castle, as they pushed onward to the Imperial City to complete their quest.
The Guild Hall:The ancient Daggerfall Overlook Castle follows traditional Breton architecture with its rounded towers and sturdy angles. The castle is built against the coastal cliffside and features a 3000ft drop off to the Iliac Bay. The Bay's waves crash into the mountain side creating a low roar much like thunder throughout the days and nights. It was once said that this was a gigantic Lion that lived beneath the castle and acted as a guardian to Highrock's enemies. Due to its proximity to the Bay, the Castle stands protected by a 180 degree angle. The front of the castle features an incredibly thick and sturdy, 500ft stone tall wall with towers on either end whose windows are fortified with metal bars. Walking in through the massive reinforced gates forces the visitor to submit to a massively imposing center inner keep complete with its own towers, balconies and parapets. The Courtyard is an awe-inducing sight to behold. One can indeed feel the power residing in the now ancient keep. A direct path up a small flight of stairs leads up to the Inner Keep whose massive doors feature a large Lion's mantle. On either side of the path lines Covenant banners fluttering proudly with the wind. Purple flower peddles wisp through the air as giant statues of Imperial Knights stand proud and imposing at the top of the steps.
To the right of the Inner Keep is the War-shed. Requiem has fought countless battles in the name of the Covenant since near its inception. Indeed their name was born from this Alliance War. As such, the large building stores Requiem's private war machines such as battering rams, ballista, and towering trebuchets. Arms and armour are stored and created here as well as evidence by respective crafting stations.
To the right of the War-shed is the East Tower unofficially dubbed "The Lover's Tower" where both Dominus and Domina set up their personal residence within the Keep's grounds. The cozy spire sets them at the second highest level in all the keep. Rickter and S'kura spend many nights gazing over the Iliac Bay and marveling at the Adamantine Tower and escaping the turmoil’s of the world.
To the left of the Castle's entrance lies the "Dark Garden." This area existed prior to Requiem's ownership and when Requiem came to possess the Keep, this area resembled a small graveyard of sorts. Looming weeping willows shroud the area and create a gloomy atmosphere. Rickter and S'kura walked through the area during their preliminary surveyance of the property and through their supernatural nature, sensed the spirits and power of the area. They quickly found a strange and eerie calm associated with the area and constructed a garden around the graveyard. The damnation of being mind shriven had left something very dark inside Rickter and the garden manifests that darkness and turmoil. It's features are telling of a man weighed heavily by the burdens of leadership and the woes of betrayal. This section of the Courtyard features a large fountain lined with candles that never burn out and crowned with a gargoyle statue. Grave markers line the grassy hill behind the fountain and at the top of the hill stands a nameless tomb. One final detail of the garden are several shadow figures that can be seen frozen in time scattered within the garden. The figures are taller than a Human and an average height Altmer. No one knows if they were real people turned to stone-ash, or elaborate statues crafted from an unknown material. All is known is they appear to be in agony and they have stood for a long, long time.
Just past the Dark Garden and to the left of the Inner Keep's main doors lies the castle balcony. The balcony provides a breath taking vista overlooking the Iliac Bay and also provides the Keep's namesake. One previous owner erected a shrine to the Daedric Prince Azura who at one point must have graced the shrine because even though She no longer visits or answers summons, Her power and energy can still be felt and witnessed.
Upon entering the keep, one is greeted with a triad of Covenant shields and a foyer lined with statues lumbering over burning braziers. The most immediate and demanding section of the keep is the Throne Room and Requiem's seat of power in which all official audiences and ceremony reside. The expensive tastes of previous owners are evident by the grand entrance, which is outlined by the same giant Imperial Knight statues in the courtyard. One is beseeched with kneeling Ra'gada knights on either side creating a walkway to the pomp in which two elaborate thrones modeled after none other than the Imperial City's Ruby Throne, are anchored to a raised section of the floor. Grand Covenant banners loom behind the thrones signifying the Guild's staunch allegiance and gigantic sword wielding knight-watcher statues stand vigil, heads bowed toward the majesty of the pomp. A chandelier of Redguard design constructed of solid gold illuminates the magnificent sight. Silver roaring lions jut out from either side of the thrones. Regardless of the extravagance, sitting between the two thrones is one object that commands attention: a large golden Khajiiti Senche Lion statue. This is the Eye of Secunda. Also constructed of solid gold, it is said that a spell is needed just to lift the object whose worth is immeasurable. Despite its fortune due to construction alone, the Eye of Secunda holds a much more valuable object: centered on the forehead is a third cycloptic eye which gives the statue its namesake. This is no ordinary eye as it is in fact an incredibly large soul gem which acts as a prison a very powerful and dangerous Daedra. Requiem was charged with reacquiring this statue for the assumed head of the Wayrest Outlaw's refuge in order to clear Rickter's aunt's name from being targeted by the Midnight Union. When Requiem learned what the statue really was, they could not hand over such a powerful object to an organization that would pawn its power to the highest bidder. Keeping the object for themselves made Requiem many enemies but this would not last for as Requiem grew in power, they were able to best all opposing forces.
The Anteroom is the largest room in the inner keep where most of Requiem's audience would reside during time of ceremony. The most prominent object is a very large statue of Molag Bal himself. Molag Bal is the absolute adversary of all living beings on Tamriel. He stole the souls of millions including Dominus. To save his son's life, Rickter gave himself to the Lord of Rape and Enslavement and became one of his lieutenants shackled as a mind shriven thrall. Lives were sacrificed to save Rickter and had Molag Bal's attempted Planemeld succeeded, it would have left all of the land in ruin and desolation. A statue was erected to remind all present and future Guild members of the terror that once loomed, the darkness that once fell, and the threat that yet remains.
Ascending the staircase, is the Celebration Loft. Attached is the kitchen where food and drink and merriment are served. The finest of wines are imported from all over Tamriel and exquisite meals from the Abecean Longfins of Skyrim to Bantam Guar Fillets are prepared by the Guild's Master Provisioners.
The lower level of the Keep that extends underground is Requiem's Training Dungeon. Magickal training skeletons stand ready by the power of Animus stones. Requiem's Warmaster and personal combat trainer, Smush M'gush, hones the skills of those willing to brave the enemies of the guild. Lining the walls are the busts of Requiem's conquered. Each meticulously crafted by solid polished bronze. The dungeon is also used as a fallback shelter should the Keep ever come under attack complete with a secret exit door that leads to the bay. There is one other purpose of dungeon and that is in the event of extreme circumstances, to prevent an enemy from overtaking the Keep, the same secret exit door can be used to flood the Keep entirely by lifting safeguard barriers and allowing the Bay waters to rush in.
The final room of the Requiem Guild Hall Castle, is the Council Chamber. This room is located next to the Anteroom, opposite of the stairwell. It is a foreboding room where all matters of the Guild are decided by its leadership structure, the Pillars of Power. There are always 4 Pillars to symbolize one for each corner of a home. The entrance of the chamber is guarded by two dreadful Bloodspawn gargoyles. These gargoyles are not just for display, they are real Bloodspawn created by the combined vampire magicka of Dominus and Domina and should a security alarm be triggered, they will come to life and battle the threat until the threat is extinguished, or they are destroyed. Inside the circular room are seats for all council members, Dominus, Domina and the 4 Primarchs. Behind the Head Thrones, is a single knight-watcher statue illuminated by the glow of two burning braziers. Behind each Primarch seat is a solid granite pillar exemplifying the Pillar of Power they represent. In the center of the room is a stone podium in which a tome rests. Magickal energies project from the tome and the entire podium emits a soft violet glow. This tome holds the names of those who were banished from the guild through Excommunicatus Traitorus, for they had committed the ultimate betrayal against Requiem. They are the forsaken damned who fell to treacherous heresy and as long as their names remain in the tome, unbreakable magicka wards prevent them from entering the Keep under any circumstances. The Council Chamber Is mostly a private area where those who enter are explicitly permitted usually by summons.