Atop mighty Thralls, the Hell Priests oversaw the invasion of the mortal world. The Thrall, slave titan of the underworld, carried the Priest Temples into the wake of battle, providing the Priests with vigil of Hell's advance from a strategically impervious emplacement. From their Temples perch the Priests would emanate a powerful psionic influence, imposing greater coordination among the chaotic forces of Hell and increasing their battle effectiveness. The Thrall, possessing superior resilience, proved indestructible by conventional weapons, thwarting all attempts by Armored Response Coalition defensive forces. Only by severing the Priest's psychokinetic tether could the Titan be neutralized - an act that could only be accomplished by an infiltration of the Temple itself.
Powerful practitioners of arcane magics, the Priests have warped their powers to suit their insidious purpose, harnessing the dark forces of Hellish psychomancy to prepare Earth for the final Blood Ritual. By blood were the Hell Priests bound to the dark ritual which now consumes Earth, and so long as even one of them lives, the consumption of Earth will continue, allowing Hell unfettered rule over the mortal world. Only by destroying the priests can the Blood Ritual be stopped and the Earth saved.
One of the three Hell Priests, Deag Nilox is charged with ensuring that Hell's invasion of Earth succeeds. He prefers to operate on the planet's surface, working in his unholy barge carried on the back of a demonic titan. This provides him an elevated, mobile position from which to oversee the campaign against humanity. Spiteful and cruel, Nilox frequently captures civilians alive so that their still-living blood can be harvested for his occult rituals.
Dark viceroy to the Chaos Throne, Ranak has long served as one of Hell's emissaries on Earth, laying the foundation for the planet's inevitable invasion. In secrecy Ranak has prepared the Hellgate, awaiting the omen of the sixth seal, that which signals the Age of Rapture, which will cleanse Earth as foretold by the Maykr Prophets.
Ranak worked closely with Olivia Pierce during the development of the original Mars project, and since her death has taken total control of the UAC. His promises of wealth, power and everlasting life have corrupted the organization from within, absolving its employees of their moral conscience, accelerating the sacrifice of Earth in exchange for the lure of Argent Energy and the promise of undying union with Hell.
Deag Ranak previously served the King of Argent D'Nur as a Sentinel Priest, guiding the Argenta's spiritual growth as a hallowed figure. After the Betrayal he abandoned his homeworld, working on behalf of the Khan Maykr and personally overseeing the transformation of viable planets. Ranak has constructed a veritable fortress in the polar caps to protect him during his dark work.
Once a race of beast-like hunters, the Doom Hunter creature was known to Sentinel warriors in ages past as lethal stalkers of the Metal Age. Extracted from the frozen depths of the polar tundra, the Doom Hunter belongs to an ancient race uncovered during Cultist excavation in the remote arctic. Preserved below the frozen ice for millions of years, the unearthed remains of this creature were deemed suitable for reconstruction, becoming the subject of Cultist necro-regenerative bio-experimentation. Within the remote Cultist citadel, a high-tech ritual altar which towers over the Golgothan ruins, the Doom Hunter was ceremoniously and systematically resurrected and rebuilt. While the majority of its components are now cybernetic it retains a high degree of mental faculty - a sentient, brutal hunting instinct augmented with the armaments of a tank division.
As civil war consumed Argent D'Nur, the Night Sentinels Guard was quartered by their faith. Torn between serving the Khan Maykr or revolting against that which they swore to protect. Those most disillusioned forswore their oath to the Sentinel royalty, abandoning their pact of allegiance made to the throne. These hardened warriors joined the separatist group led by the exalted Priest class, allying themselves with the Maykrs and their devout acolytes in an attempted coup against the Sentinel royal house. Those Sentinel warriors who fell in battle, having sided with the Maykrs, were ultimately denied finality in death. Resurrected by the Divinity Machine of Maykr design, these fallen Sentinels were returned from the dead, transformed by Hell's power and recreated with a singular purpose: to hunt the Slayer, now reborn as Knights in Hell's army.
Deag Grav remains the most powerful of the Hell Priests amongst the people of Argent D'Nur, frequently visiting his ancient homeworld to lord over the populace. Arrogant and pompous, Grav calls for blood-sport in the Arena to entertain the fallen citizens of Sentinel Prime. Since the demonic invasion of Earth began he has operated on the planet's surface along with his fellow Hell Priests to direct Hell's forces, but after the deaths of Deag Ranak and Nilox he has fled to the safety of the Arena.
It was Deag Grav who facilitated the torment and eventual betrayal of Sentinel Commander Valen, taking the keys to the Sepulcher of Elements and opening the vault of the sleeping Wraiths. The ancient creatures were abducted, transported to Hell and tortured to siphon away their power. He used the heart of Valen's son to animate the Icon of Sin, a Titan still spoken of in legend throughout Argent D'Nur.
In the years following the end of the Golden Age competing factions of Argent D'Nur turned against one another. An insidious influence has set itself upon the Sentinel people, corrupting its once sacred traditions. The coliseum, once a place of honorable combat where prisoners of the Argenta were tested for the right to fight in the front lines of their army, has since become a place of blood-sport. In violation of Sentinel law, the Priests have encaged a demon there, a merciless executioner used to enact judgement of their own decree. The Gladiator, wielding an accursed shield which entombs the tormented soul of his undying master, remains undefeated in battle, infamous for the many lives it has claimed.
Nekravol - Part I
The city of Nekravol was built in Hell by the combined efforts of the Maykrs and Sentinel Engineers, designed to produce a continuous flow of Argent Energy. Constructed of stone and fell-steel on a foundation of uncounted corpses, the sprawling fortress funnels a constant stream of victims towards Kalibas, the Sightless Judge. This ancient demon is a rare breed, unable to communicate or move without great difficulty. It exists as an overseer of sorts, awaiting as cages packed with the recently-slain are brought before it, determining which souls are candidates for the Argent process.
Operating not unlike a large-scale slaughterhouse, Nekravol is divided into many sections. The most immediately accessible portions contain the Abaddon Pit, an enormous chasm where victims are herded. Beyond Kalibas the Argent-worthy souls are directed deeper into the black fortress; those who he renders unfit are discarded as waste, their tortured souls thrown into the burning sludge of the Blood Swamps.
Fuel the Eternal Flame - Part I
Translation from the Corrax Tablets
The transformation of mortal creature into demon is a laggard and gradual process, one that can take eons to transpire without the catalyst of Argenta intervention. The victim is left to maunder in the shadow land for years uncounted, where over ageless time they transform into demon. During their nightmarish journey the ethereal soul slowly drains from the body, and in that dark realm the substance of mortal life is manifest as matter. It gathers in pools of volatile aura found all over Hell. Demon-kind call these pools the Well, and use them to invigorate themselves for battle.
It is from this aura that the Essence is formed. By melding it with Wraith energy, that which lights the darkened hall and sets the Sentinel sword ablaze, the Essence is founded. The combining of these primal energies creates Argent Energy; a power source so potent, so incalculably formidable, that it has consumed the Argenta and driven us on to greater influence than was ever possible with Wraith power alone.
Nekravol - Part II
This is one of the Soul Spires identified in the Argenta texts, built into the central columns of Nekravol. Although most Soul Spires were linked directly to Argent D'Nur through a Hell Priest created Continuum Gate, this particular one is linked to Urdak, the home of the Maykrs. There is no Continuum Gate here, presumably due to the Khan Maykr's natural distrust of those under her charge.
The Soul Spires were designed by the Maykrs to accelerate the processing of mortal victims into Argent Energy, and build in secret by Sentinel slaves under the direction of the Order Deag. This forced labor was a crucial step in fulfilling the Khan Maykr's desire for Argent, as beings from Urdak are unable to cross over to Hell's dimension.
Fuel the Eternal Flame - Part II
Translation from the Corrax Tablets
The Maykrs' need for the Essence is prime. Without it they must suffer the monstrous fate of Transfiguration, and see their wisdom and faculties slither from their twisted forms. By bidding of the Khan Maykr herself, the Order of the Deag has devised a method to improve and accelerate the production of the Hell aura. What once took eons for the savage beasts to attain can now be accomplished in short order by the Argenta intellect, and with greater efficiency and consistency.
We constructed the Soul Spires, vast halls erected in the savage lands by our slaves and under direction of the Order. Even though we raised a monument on their ground, demon-kind does not harry us during assembly of the Soul Spires; for the Khan Maykr herself bartered a deal with the Dark Lord that rules over the shadow walkers. A bargain was struck; the demons would be given fresh worlds and souls to consume, bolstering their forces and expanding the corrupting domain of Hell, and the Maykrs would be granted access to the flow of Argent.
The procedure inside the Soul Spires is thus; the captives are tortured until no semblance of humanity remains within them. Bereft of hope, the mortal soul is vulnerable and can be easily extracted. This we achieve with a machine from the enlightened mind of the Khan Maykr herself: the Evulsor.
Once the Evulsor has done its deed and the soul has been extracted, the victim's body is ejected into the wasteland where, as before our cunning meddling, it becomes demon over time.
Fuel the Eternal Flame - Part III
Translation from the Corrax Tablets
We gather the volatile aura, and store it in vast reservoirs. There it is coalesced with Wraith energy, and subjected to the infernal fires of Hell itself. In the heat of the primal fire, the Essence is loosed and captured for our gain.
The final stage of the process is the dividend of the gains. Vast quantities of the Essence are fed directly to Argent D'Nur, to power our machine and drive our engine. The rest is reserved for the Khan Maykr. Though she may never set foot in the dark realm, she has devised means to teleport Essence to the Holy Land, that which she calls Urdak, the Domain of Angels. Her use of the Essence is unchallenged, for it was she and her court that gave us design to capture the Essence, and her payment is just.
As it is written in the prophecies of ancient Sentinel scripture, the Titans - towering elder demons of the infernal age - would return, unearthed from their immortal slumber. The Titans are believed to be harbingers of the end-times, primordial forces of chaos and destruction.
Born from the tortured spirit of the Betrayer's son, it was by Hell's unholy design that the Icon of Sin was given flesh. The fearsome Titan, forged from the essence of mortal suffering, once bore a human soul - a soul now transmogrified and entombed within the still beating heart of its former self. The Betrayer, seeking to free his son from eternal torment within the depths of Hell, made an agreement - a pact sealed by the black fates of darkness - that promised to grant his son the chance to return from death. The son would live again, but not as a human - in Hell's endless cruelty, the son was damned to become the Icon, an inhuman existence bound only to its former humanity by the now disembodied, undying mortal heart.
The Betrayal of the Father
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Our research shows that Maykr history and lore holds truths that are not consistent with passages found in the Hell Priest texts, revealing the true origins of Hell and all surrounding dimensions. This revelation would explain why Hell is the single dimension that connects to all others, and why it is the oldest in existence - the first world.
In the beginning the world of Jekkad (later known as Hell) prospered under the guidance of their leader Davoth. He longed to solve the riddle of immortality for his people - an ability only he possessed. His efforts met with failure, as mortal flesh could not sustain the undying spirit. Using his unrivaled power he crafted the Maykr race to find the solution, their machine minds working in unison.
Davoth was obsessed in his effort to eliminate death from the world of Jekkad. When the Maykrs discovered the secret of immortality they deemed the knowledge too dangerous to share, for in their judgement Davoth had come to be seen as an eventual threat to all life.
The Maykrs acted in secret and worked quickly to seal Jekkad away, and Davoth with it, while the records of Urdak were rewritten to hide the truth. Enraged, Davoth became the Dark Lord as vengeance and hatred consumed him and his world, transforming it into Hell.
The Tainted Prophecy
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It was believed by cultist members of the UAC that the creation of the Slayer was guided in secret by the Dark Lord himself. He did it to destroy the Maykrs and their world as punishment, his hope to exact revenge on the servant race who had betrayed him.
Even without a physical form the Dark Lord can still have a powerful influence, especially against ones susceptible to corruption. He touched the mind of the Khan Maykr, leader of the Maykr race, convincing her that there was a "chosen one" who would threaten her rule. The Khan set out to find him - paranoid, afraid of this potential hidden threat the Dark Lord convinced her was close. She would do anything to find and destroy the hidden Beast.
The False Salvation
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The Dark Lord guided the hand of the Khan Maykr as she directed the creation of the Divinity Machine.
The Father had saved an element of the Dark Lord before he betrayed him and went into hiding, for he was reluctant to destroy all parts of his creator. This piece of the Dark Lord remained sealed within the coffins of Urdak. Knowing this, the Dark Lord guided the Khan Maykr to it and she took its discovery as a sign form a higher power. She descended from the mountains of Encremon with the shard needed to power the Divinity Machine they had created to save all worlds.
The Seed of Doubt
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The Maykrs tested several Sentinel warriors of Argent D'Nur in the Divinity Machine, driving them mad and destroying their soul each time, but the search for the Beast continued.
On the eve of the Black Star during the siege of Taras Nabad, a vision took hold of the Khan's servant - Samur Maykr. Thoughts of sedition had grown within the loyal chancellor, poisonous doubts that clouded his faith. "The Khan Maykr will lead us to ruin..." the voice said, and the idea grew.
The Rise of the Slayer
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Samur was blinded with newfound conviction as unbeknownst to him, the voice of the Dark Lord controlled and compelled him to free a stranger from his prison and bring him to the Divinity Machine. Samuel knew without knowing that if the machine could destroy a life it could also empower it with blinding ability. The one who would emerge from the Machine would stop the reckless Khan Maykr from leading his people to ruin.
Convinced he was doing what must be done, Samur reversed the polarity of the Machine and gave rise to the super being who would stop the Khan Maykr and save them all.
The Final Battle
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It came to be as ordained by Samur's vision. The Slayer became the unstoppable force of rage against all evil, but eventually he would turn on his masters and destroy the deceitful Khan once her alliance with the demons had been exposed to him. A corrupted Urdak lay in ruin, and Samur would soon be judged by the very savior he had created - just as Davoth had foreseen.
The Dark Lord had forged the bearer of his vengeance through those that had betrayed him - it was the ultimate revenge.
His monster would now come for him, and he would have to destroy that which gave him his retribution against the Maykrs. Davoth would not run, for he knew the Beast would find him. They would do battle on sacred platforms where the Dark Lord's minions would lie in wait to observe the outcome.