“The lighting starts with a small step. Yesterday you were a wanderer in the desert, now you have known the Red Lotus Flower’s pain and now you know. Yes, your finger was a necessary sacrifice, only the pain opens our mind. Now you can receive your Third Eye, and begin to see the world for what it is. Welcome among us, Adept. “
– Saul Padishah, Adept of the Third Circle.
“You say, how can I preach peace and respect if you wield a weapon?
I answer: how could I preach peace and respect, if I died? “
– Shun Yeso, Adept of the Fourth Circle
“I’m not angry with you, brothers. My outpost was small, and you had to have to eat. What you don’t know is that in the food that you have swallowed, after plundering our warehouse, there was a massive dose of poison. We wanted to keep it for a ritual of Elevation, but we weren’t ready yet. Maybe you’ll use it in a better … oh, I see you’re already dead. A word that is not heard is wasted word. We will bury you, and will plant flowers. “
– Tangerine, Friend of the Roads, Adept of the First Circle
The Iris is a coven of individuals who have found in spirituality and meditation a kind of escape from the nightmare of Postworld. Combine their belief in a confusion of Eastern customs, based on the limited memories and the fragments of information obtained after the Last War. Despite appreciate each other’s company and seek other people in accordance with their philosophies, they aren’t united by a religion or a common purpose, rather they are called to worship “The Thousand Gods”, as it seems that every Brother worship different deities with rituals all his own.
NAMES: monks, scholars, Quiets, Shittipants (derogatory)
Although most of the people have chosen violence as a response to Postworld’s disasters, a small part of humanity has believed necessary to maintain the values of the past. They survived as slaves and as useful people thanks to their greater knowledge, and they waited. At one point, someone managed to kill their masters in their sleep, someone else has stolen one Shocker, others simply vanished. Counterparts attract each others, and soon gentle and laborious communities were born in quiet corners … and died there.
The Postworld wasn’t a suitable place for peaceful communities, and systematically these beautiful places were found by less noble men and razed to the ground.
It didn’t take long to realize that, if you wanted to maintain some sort of civility, you had to be able to protect it. Then the few remaining began to take up weapons and use them not for attack but for defense. Were studied techniques that bound a man to his weapon, and the Shocker spread was seen as a blessing for its low lethality. A weapon able to shoot down an enemy without killing him was in fact perfect for these men, and soon became obligatory arm themselves and be always ready to return fire.
Ready against the dangers and accustomed to the harshness of the world, the iris has managed to carve out a place and to have enough followers in order to maintain a stable Outpost, colorful Mandala. From here, the adepts are moving into the world looking for allies, information, and the meaning of life itself.
“You came to us looking for revenge against the mutants that have devoured your woman. Well, we won’t help you in this task. Revenge is hate that fighting hate, and we don’t want to have anything to do with this eternal cycle of violence. We’ll give you enough food to go back home, but we take your Shocker. It’s bad that a man with bad intentions have weapons in the Vast. Good day, pilgrim “
– Xorn Who, Adept of the Sixth Circle.
“I administered this outpost in your name for most of the last three years, Lord Garulf. I turned the mass of uncivilized barbarians of the Vast in an enlightened and right army … under my command. So don’t be surprised, my Lord, if now you’ll be led in chains to the people, to be publicly stoned while I take your place. It’s the natural order of things: intelligence always wins over barbarism. “
– Tao Gar, Adept of the Eighth Circle
“When you come into Wind of Knives, you’ll feel pain. A lot of pain, in the end. You’ll bleed. You’ll miss your breath. You’ll suffer hunger and thirst, and think of going crazy, but at the same time …. YOU WILL SEE. And in your visions, you will find yourself or death. The only two things that worth to looking at. “
– Wu, Enlightened Master.
The Iris search enlightenment. This seems like a good thing, but the years of madness, fear and despair of Postworld have meant that now the only thing of which they are convinced is that to achieve a higher state of consciousness is necessary to suffer, suffer in unspeakable ways. For this reason, they subject themselves and the people who want to educate to horrible and senseless rituals: the cult often indulges in such elaborate torture and terrible to embarrass even a hyena Child, hoping to find his way in the hallucinations of their devastated minds. In contrast to the Gulag or Rhapsody, not using drugs or hallucinogens, but simple and pure physical pain, they inflict themselves through suppurated mutilation, grazes or using special tools. These experiences usually make them crazy even by the Postworld standards: some are convinced to pursue absurd goals, how to map the world or swallow a thousand needles without dying, other compose stutter poems and dancing on hot coals. They are all convinced that they are an elite group and illuminated in a world of beasts and fools, and the worst thing is that compared to violent as the Seraglio or the Hyena Children, maybe it really is.
The Iris believes that in the eye of every man lies the seed of his good or evil: when they encounter someone who doesn’t know, the first thing they do is peer into his eyes and then decide whether to be accommodating or aggressive. However, they have a incredible respect for human life and only if forced they use lethal force.
The Iris aspiring members must undergo a test called Red Lotus, during which they suffer horribly: it’s never something trivial and barbaric as a beating, but typically ingesting something poisonous, the amputation of something of non-viable or a burn with acid. If the pain is borne with dignity, the new member is welcomed and is called Adept of the first circle. The eye symbol of the faction is drawn on the forehead and wearing the typical orange band. Since then, the adept began to learn the delirious knowledge of worship and is trained to their defensive arts, mainly of Shocker and long weapons, such as sticks and spears.
As time passes and the novel becomes increasingly useful to the Iris, a senior member can promote him. There are nine circles in the Iris, over them an adept can becomes an Enlightened Master and leads to the most profound secrets of the cult. Currently there are seven Masters, Ragiveda, which hardly leave the Mandala security.
It happens very often that Iris members, during their travels, end up as part of different communities, where they earn respect and power thanks to their wisdom. Sometimes in positions of power, such as counselors and administrators, and they are often the real boss in an Outposts leaded by stupid and dull people.
DEALING WITH OTHERS
Being relatively few and timid, many even don’t know the existence of the Iris, and those who do generally consider them limp and weak. To Adepts it’s fine, feeling superior to all the others and don’t have problems to be ignored for most of the time. Obviously, those who tried to attack them without good preparation has been found with the skull split by a precise storm Shocker.
ARCHETYPES: Radioactive Monk, Wise Crowds, Gunman Samurai, Inside Researcher
SYMBOL: A wide-open eye
THE OTHERS THOUGHT:
“Bah! What do we do with people like that? They’re all the time chanting and injure themselves! Radiation have fucking their brain brother, listen to me … well, their business! Tonight we take them while they’re sleeping and I make myself a necklace with glitters on their ears! “
– Pat Nixos of Matiz Dogs, currently dispersed
“We’ve never seen one of them at the hospital. It seems they accept death as part of life, or something. Total conundrum, but fascinating in their search for truth. Maybe we could work together one day. “
– Dr. Gustav, the Gulag
“Theirs is a false spirituality: they don’t aim to please a god, only to sing their strange mantra and feel better than others. Paradise Gamma never welcome these apostates, and I don’t want to have anything to do with them. “
– Saint Boleyn Miyaki, of the cult of Saint Curie.
“Saving the world is important, my adepts, but even more is to save ourselves. We cannot let the humanity regress to barbarism. We are the herald of knowledge, the guardians of the spirit, who open the doors of our future. Raise and see, adepts: we’ll be the fireflies that lead the traveler on a safe path “
– Nuhammad New Sun, Enlightened Master