Erebos is an old but relatively obscure covenant consisting entirely of magi from House Ex Miscellanea, dedicated to the preservation of traditions of magic that are native to the Theban Tribunal. Most of its magi, although they live in the same general area, have little to do with one another, or with the Tribunal at large.
In the second half of the ninth century, a few decades after the founding of House Ex Miscellanea and shortly after the Sundering of House Tremere, representatives of House Ex Miscellanea came to the Theban Tribunal. Among them was a filius of Pralix, tasked with dealing with the troublesome Witches of Thessaly (see Houses of Hermes: Societates, page 109, and Realms of Power: The Infernal, page 140). A tiny handful of the witches, led by a maga named Cyra, were convinced and agreed to join the Order of Hermes. Cyra was not minded to move, however, and so founded a covenant in the homelands of her tradition, the Cambunian mountains of northern Thessaly. She decided that her covenant should protect and preserve all the native Greek traditions that had been threatened by House Tremere before the Sundering. She named her covenant Erebos, a synonym for Hades also meaning “blackness” or “shadow.” The name proved to be apt, since Erebos is among the most secretive of the Tribunal’s covenants.
Over the years since, several new recruits to the Order of Hermes, most from native Greek traditions of magic, have gravitated here, reasoning that a covenant explicitly devoted to the preservation of their tradition would be a welcome home. Most found Erebos somewhat less than welcoming, but stayed anyway.
Setting and Physical Description
The covenant’s buildings, such as they are, may be found in a long, largely deserted valley in the Cambunian mountains on the northern edge of Thessaly. There are no communal structures; instead, the covenant consists of the individual sancta of its members, which are dotted along the valley over the course of several miles. There is no pattern or plan to these dwellings — most of the magi have taken advantage of the numerous hillside and cliffside caves, although some have erected other structures such as cottages or treehouses. Most of the valley has a Magic aura of 2, but other auras are present in a few places. Magi of the covenant have discovered a nearby bat-infested cave complex that is a sanctuary formerly claimed by a chthonic cult of Hecate (see Ancient Magic, page 52). The magi harvest Perdo vis from the cave’s bats, but have not yet entered on account of the traps laid by the cultists.
Erebos’ Patron: Cyra
Cyra of House Ex Miscellanea founded the covenant of Erebos, but passed into Final Twilight only a couple of decades thereafter. She did not vanish entirely, however. On occasion she reappears as a cryptic guide and protector of her followers, who have adopted her as their patron spirit. She most often takes the form of her former familiar, a great white owl with bright red eyes, which strongly resembles a kind of protective spirit from northern Greece known as koukouvaouna. Otherwise, she appears as a haggard woman with glowing red eyes, dressed in a black shawl and clutching an obsidian staff enchanted with destructive powers. She curses any who enter the valley with malign intent towards Erebos. Cyra is most likely a Magic spirit, but might conceivably be Infernal, given the dark nature of the magics practiced by the Witches of Thessaly.