Threvanosh is the name of the greatest and most dangerous magic user to ever walk upon Cendra.
She was born into humble origins, the daughter of a fisherman, whose magical power was discovered at the age of 8. On that day, a great wave raced towards her home. Instinctively, she raised a magical shield around the entire village, leaving it unscathed while surrounding villages drowned. It was a feat that would have taxed all but a powerful, experienced mage. While her father was not an educated man, he knew that Threvanosh would be wasted remaining in the village, and took her to the temple of Nanye in the nearby city-state of Ulm. There, her new life as an apprentice began after she proved her power; given a pebble by a priest and told to float it above her palm, she instead changed it into a garnet.
Threvanosh’s master enforced brutal discipline on his young apprentice. Her raw power was immensely dangerous and her master made sure she was afraid of it, and of him. Her escape during these years was a young paladin-in-training of Iluvitar named Beren who she formed a secret friendship with, which turned romantic as she became a young woman. By 16, her master was forced to release her, faced with the absurdity of a pupil who could best him in almost any magical task. Eager to leave the city, she and Beren departed; she to explore the world, and he to protect it.
For the next six years they journeyed Cendra. They added fellows to their group; Porfir, a bard and scribe, and Eleoah, a warrior. Their fame and power grew; cities were saved, monsters slain, ruins explored. But the growth of Threvanosh’s power outstripped that of her allies. Each new spell she invented opened new doors for the group and new ways for them to defend Cendra’s people. At 21, she battled and defeated the ancient dragon Cah’dre’sah after he was whipped into a rage by a foolish duke’s attempt to make his legend by slaying him. Thousands of lives were saved.
Threvanosh’s increasing power began to alienate her from her friends, and from Beren. While she strove to learn and become ever greater to protect them, her protection increasingly became condescending and harsh. The fear of her own power, instilled by her master, fell away. Cendra was full of disorder and pain and only by taking a stronger hand did Threvanosh see a way to end it.
Eleoah quarreled with Threvanosh and left the group. Beren, finding Threvanosh becoming more and more distant, fixated on gaining the power to pacify Cendra, departed to return to his temple. Only Porfir remained.
It’s unclear exactly what Threvanosh was seeking, and what she apparently found, but she began a series of assaults on the sanctums and towers of her fellow magi, raiding their treasures for artifacts. Their battles intensified as wizards began to band together to defend against her and soon, they spilled over into Cendra’s cities. Dramatic encounters unfolded with mages teleporting across Cendra, summoning elementals, hurling lightning bolts, liquifying the ground, and spawning tornados of noxious gas to try to stop Threvanosh. Mages died by the score. Threvanosh began to build a set of great pillars encircled with great metal rings in the Gohavian Desert and employed a menacing army of all races, humanoid and monstrous, to protect them.
The empires of Cendra began to form an alliance to combat Threvanosh after a battle between her and Magister Fethavil leveled several districts of the city of Povska. Threvanosh decided to make an example of the nascent alliance’s leader; Ulm. There, she encountered Eleoah on the city’s walls, clad in her suit of magical armor and ready to defend the city. When Eleoah leapt from the walls, propelled by her armor, and raised her sword, Threvanosh incinerated her. Ulm was razed to the ground.
Porfir abandoned her and went to Beren, who despaired at what his love had become. Together, they desperately searched for a weapon they hoped could stop her; Akirvatosh, a great warhammer and relic of Illuvitar. Illuvitar smiled upon them, and they recovered the hammer from the sunken temple where it lay.
Threvanosh’s pillars were completed as an allied host marched on the desert. There, at the base of the structures, a great battle was joined between Threvanosh’s army of monsters, golems, and men, and the allied forces. As the armies clashed, the tips of the pillars’ swirling metal arms fired beams of light into a central point into the air, and when they met, the light shot downwards into the earth and began to bore a great wound into the ground. Threvanosh was seeking something, something buried in Cendra’s heart, and she was destroying the world to get it.
Cendra groaned and shook. The battle took on a fevered pitch as the pillars’ lightning tunneled ever deeper. Threvanosh raised a great crystalline staircase towards the center point of light, ready to claim her prize. Beren, wielding Akirvatosh, cleared a swath through her army, and he and Porfir ascended the stairs behind her. At their crest, the former lovers faced each other. Threvanosh hesitated. Beren did not.
He struck down Threvanosh and without her great power sustaining them, the pillars fell silent. Cendra calmed and Threvanosh’s army fled.
In the wake of her death, the pillars were razed and scattered across Cendra. Not even the mages wanted to take the risk of studying them. The great hole that Threvanosh tore into Cendra remains to this day.
In an attempt to prevent such a dangerous wizard from arising again, the Collegium was founded, a way for magic-users to regiment their studies and police their members.