Founding of the Brotherhood

Into this dark age strode a man of hope and vision. His name was Nathaniel Durand. He was to become the first Cardinal of our blessed Brotherhood. Durand spoke out against the gathering darkness. He spoke of the approaching threat of the Dark Symmetry. He showed how the thinking machines had become its tools, how they had been infected with the essence of evil, and had turned on their human former masters. He preached war against the machines, and the common people listened. They took hammers to the thinking engines. They demolished great machines and powerplants.

For Nathaniel Durand was the first practitioner of our blessed Art, and he wielded the forces of Light. He taught his arts to his most trusted followers and sent them across the worlds of men to bear his message. Everywhere the Lightbringers spoke, they were listened to by the common people. Their message was simple but it made sense of the chaos of the world. Soon the influence of Nathaniel Durand was felt in every corporation. In this time of war and carnage, he gave people hope, a thing more precious than gold.

So it came to pass that the corporations realized that they could not kill Durand and they could not stamp out his sacred message, so they decided to come to terms. They publicly acknowledged his spiritual authority and bent their propaganda machines to spreading his message. They believed that they could use his teachings to control their people. They stored the designs of the old machines and then enthusiastically ordered their soldiers to join in the destruction. Everything that bore the slightest taint of the thinking engines was destroyed. So it came to be that the word of Nathaniel Durand was spread to all the worlds, and the powers of Light were made ready for the coming struggle with the darkness. Praise be.

By now, the people hungered for the words of Blessed Nathaniel as they had once hungered for bread. Durand himself saw that he must organize a force capable of contesting with the Darkness for possession of men's souls. From these twin imperatives was born our Brotherhood.

Nathaniel Durand was proclaimed the first Cardinal, and he swiftly became the most powerful spiritual and temporal leader mankind had ever known. He ordered the founding of the Four Directorates.

In the early years of Cardinal Durand's long reign, billions entered the Brotherhood's fold, hungry to hear the Cardnial's spiritual teachings. Willingly, each rejoiced to give up one tenth part of his income, to help in spreading the word. The Cardinal ordered this money to be used in raising the Cathedrals; mighty structures that would be bastions of the faith, beacons of hope and light towering over the cities of men.

Knowing that a divided humanity would inevitably fall to the darkness, the Cardinal realized he must end the corporate wars. He sent emissaries to each of the Megacorporations and told them to make peace, on pain of facing the wrath of the Brotherhood.

Haltingly, unwillingly, not warting the full weight of the Brotherhood thrown behind their enemies, each Megacorporation sent emissaries to the negotiating table. After 25years of long and arduous negotiation, the Treaty of Heimburg was signed. The First Corporate Wars ended. The Cartel was put into place to resolve disputes between the Corporations.

A brief age of hope began. It was not to last. Searching for new lands to claim and conquer, a secretly dispatched force of Imperial Conquistadors landed on the newly discovered black, tenth planet - Nero. There, they found the First Seal of Repulsion.