Further than any soul might imagine, glacial sheets and snow drifts entomb these mountains. Moaning winds and peaceful silence fight day and night for ownership of symphony. The wind concedes and the silent moment’s triumph is stolen. A faint sound of a goat’s bleat, bells on necks of a talkative tribe, arduously heavy locking mechanism upon heavy oak doors and the sound of grain hitting a frosted, impenetrable soil reign here.
An old man with a grey beard, black robes and leather sandals takes to the deep stone steps carefully, making his way to the young boy tending the tribe of quadrupeds. The massive door behind him appears as if a gateway into the mountains themselves, but is in fact a temple. A black spire, blanketed in frost and ice, made from the volcanic soul spewed forth from the earth eons ago. 400 feet high yet somehow sheltered by the rock face above it as a mother would protect a child.
Within beyond tall arched ceilings and heavy stone walls, long wooden bridges and spiraling staircases, a man sits in a room, forlorn, naked. All the while he tiredly gazes at towering stone faces, which stare back at him without compassion. They are the visage of Modus Harakiem, Agra Vorpa, and Shiadeem Maug, the first of the Priesthood of The Silent Night. Dead long ago, they continue there watchful presence, in the form of stone, maintaining focus, dedication, and intent.
And the watchful man is waiting. Sitting on his plain wooded chair, hands on thighs, he is a hunter, returned from his long crusade. He has not bathed for weeks, his white matted hair, his sutted hands have said. His black plate armor, and under garments lie in an organized pile on the ground next to him.
A young man enters the room with an iron bowl, held from ornate handles on either side. He begins to wipe away the man’s encrusted skin, his wounds, his blood, the blood of others, the hate, the merciless and reckless designs of cruel evils. They fall to the stone floor swallowed within its cracks.
He is Maud. A man of The Silent Night, Destroyer of all abomination, hunter of demons, fiends and the truest of evils.