The Feral Continent
The Eight Heroes
The Crusade was a time of chaos.
In a war with tens of thousands falling on both sides, with the blood of gods soaking battlefields, and the primal, raw, magic of the land swirling, great heroes were inevitably going to rise above the rest.
Either finding their power, achieving it, or creating it, the Eight Heroes would make themselves known for all time, and would create a legacy that would guide the South even two millennia after their passing and the end of their crusade.
The Eight Heroes were as follows:
Ysgar Of The White Field:
The leader of the Eight, and the second of them to rise after Joran, Ysgar began life as an average mage and healer, before joining the Crusade to tend to the wounded on the front lines.
One of the rare people who excels at fighting while gaining no joy from it, Ysgar made his mark on every battle he participated in, his magical talent and raw power seeming to soak up the innate power in the land, growing exponentially.
Eventually forsaking healing all together and focusing all his attention on magecraft, Ysgar began to excel.
And then the battle of White Field happened, and Sa'Mara rolled across the field devouring thousands through her skin, until in a moment of pure focus and desperation Ysgar reached out with his power and lifted her into the sky until she had devoured herself, soaking the field below in her blood.
He would lead the eventual Eight Heroes right up until the final battle of the crusade, where he fell.
The kind of blacksmith that comes along once every 10 generations, Joran came into his power when he forged White Flower, the first of the great artifacts.
From that moment, he became a swordsman unlike any other.
Considered the greatest of the Eight Heroes, Jorans relentless struggle against his nemesis Parash became a fixture of the histories, and when the final battle was over Joran used the last of his incredible power to raise the seven towers and the Sphere, before vanishing into the center.
White Flower still exists, passed down from legendary swordsman to legendary swordsman.
Lady Ursa Starbrine:
Without Lady Ursa Starbrine, there would never have been a crusade. A powerful woman, unmatched in raw martial skill, her power was in the incredible loyalty and bravery she could inspire in those around her.
The military general of the crusade, what she lacked in strategic knowledge she more than made up for with her talent for leading charges. A paladin of Iomedae, she survived until the final battle, where she personally clashed with Imera, the god of soldiers, and slew him in single combat.
There has never been a finer mounted knight since.
Lelise Of The Bloodgate:
Amoral, reckless, and possessing of unnatural strength, Lelise of the Bloodgate saw using weapons as a waste of her time, and her enemies time. Somehow blessed with impenetrable skin and the strength to shatter stone and throw wagons, Lelise waded into battle in a simple tunic of cloth and would strike the enemy lines with the same impact as a cannonball.
Standing on any tower today and looking into the Wastes at the battlefield of the last battle, you'll see scattered craters for miles.
Rest assured, it was all her, and her mighty fists.
She was somehow slain during the battle, her lifeless body discovered afterwards without any sign of injury.
Young, cheerful, and with unmatchable willpower, Little Dodge rose from the gutters of the camp at White Hall into the closest thing the crusade had to an assassin.
Rumored to even bend shadows to his will, and be able to hypnotize foes with a look or his voice, by the end of the Crusade no-one knew their way through the Wastes better.
One of the Three Traitors, something changed in Little Dodge, and he stood by Tacita and Boral when they betrayed the rest of their order. He perished during the Battle Of The Hourglass, mere hours after his betrayal.
Tacita Of The Everweb:
Beautiful, and lethal, Tacita Of The Everweb began her life as a priestess of Pharasma. But when the Crusade began, she was compelled by strange visions she often spoke about to pick up arms and join the campaign.
She was, for lack of a better word, brilliant.
The smartest of the Heroes, with an unmatchable cunning and wit, Tacitas greatest efforts to the campaign occurred in the planning of the battles. But make no mistake, when the time for violence came and she strode into battle wielding her swords, her cloak as black as midnight flowing behind her, she was just as fearsome.
A talent for magic, a talent for fighting, but with a cunning that made those around her seem to be imbeciles, she betrayed the Crusade, leading to the Battle Of The Hourglass.
She survived, until the final battle, where she was slain by Zara.
Guardian Zara Of The Sapphire Sea:
Guardian Zara, also remembered as Zara The Kind, was compassionate and protective, even in the heat of battle. A talented archer, but far better as a healer, Zara began in the small scout corps of the Crusade, darting around the battlefields keeping soldiers alive while picking off enemy stragglers.
Perhaps because of her compassion, she attained a power she referred to as the Divine Shield.
By entering into a deep meditation, she was able to project a magical defense around entire armies, that she had to focus to maintain. Eventually her skill with the shield grew, until she was able to sustain a weaker version around an army, or a powerful one around herself and nearby companions, even when she was fighting.
This made her the perfect foil for Tacita, during the final battle. Zara was able to slay her traitorous friend.
Zara The Kind fell during the final battle, and Joran honored her memory by forming the Guardians, with the sigil of the Guardians being Zaras original crest.
Magister Boral The Wise:
Otherwise remembered as The Regretful Hero, Boral never wanted any part in the crusade.
Originally a gentle and willful man, Boral was slowly but surely changed by the blood, by the gore, and by the chaos of the war.
A powerful psychic and scholar, the strain grew on him, turning him into a very shrewd, callous, and broken man, who yet never refused to do what was best for the Crusade. He was admired for his dedication to duty despite the personal cost.
At least, he was, before he betrayed the Crusade at the Battle Of The Hourglass. Ysgar challenged him personally, and Boral allowed himself to be slain, confident he had 'done the right thing, in the end'
What that right thing was, no-one ever knew.