Ertai appears as a young man with a riot of pale-blonde hair and a meticulously-trimmed beard. His garments are rich, befitting his office, and he bears a crook-like staff of black wood topped with a sphere of red lightning.
Master of the Fraternità del Azzurro
Ertai di Tolari (the Archmage) has preserved the Dominium for centuries and helped open the way to the Archipelago. In doing so he has also threatened the fabric of reality.
“You thought, as a boy, that a mage is one who can do anything. So I thought, once. So did we all. And the truth is that as a man’s real power grows and his knowledge widens, ever the way he can follow grows narrower: until at last he chooses nothing, but does only and wholly what he must do . . .” — Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea
Confederacy of Tolaria (Confederazione di Tolari) > Tolar
The Archmage maintains the wards that protect the Confederacy through a series of magical nodes, placed at strategic points across the land. The nodes tap into ley lines, which occur naturally, and channel and direct arcane energy from them to the wards.
The Archmage oversees the Tolarian Academy, though it is run day-to-day by the Fraternità del Azzurro, the order of wizards that forms the heart of the Confederacy.
Adventurers & the Icon
Many adventurers long to be hired into the Archmage’s service. His wizards provide powerful support and they reward adventurers well, but the Archmage’s missions are notoriously obscure. Instead of killing monsters or rescuing those in peril, adventurers hired by the wizards of the Confederacy may find themselves burying ritual items in wastelands or painting sigils on the walls of ruins. Somehow, it’s all very important to the Confederacy.
Sálmælikvarða [Soulscale] (the Great Gold Wyrm) and Samdhya of Angathil (the Elf Queen) represent the Archipelago’s resistance to the Dominium, and it was from them that the Archmage first learned of the threat posed by the method of the Dominium’s invasion.
The orc leader of Kesk, Vachir Burilgi (the Orc Lord), fought against the imposition of order that the Confederacy represented from the moment of their arrival. No quarter was asked, and none given by the vengeful hordes of Arken. Csenge of Netheril (the Diabolist) and her capricious, sometimes malicious, use of power has always conflicted with the careful, deliberate processes of the Archmage. Avacyn of the Protectorate (the Priestess) seeks to impose the will of the gods of the Dominium over all the Archipelago. Her animistic magic conflicts with the sorcery commanded by the Archmage.
The Tolarian Academy (both a school and a research facility) was founded in Atlantis, the Dominium’s previous realm, by former Archmage Roderigo Barrin. It was used to train an elite cadre of mages who eventually defected from the Dominium, in protest of the growing power of the Protectorate and the impact of the Dominium’s invasion upon the fabric of local reality.
The Academy was responsible for many important magical creations throughout its history. Amongst these were the discovery of slowtime water capable of letting mortals live vastly extended lifespans, the creation of a time travelling device, the eugenic manipulation of the Metathran and the Bloodline project, and the building of the Titan Engines, and the Skyship Weatherlight.
Ertai assumed the title of Archmage when Roderigo abdicated during the rebellion against the Dominium.
The True Danger
The Archmage knows the route from lost Atlantis to the present-day Dominium, and the price paid for the passage.