Champion of the Gods: Grand Master Kel
Of all the great wizards throughout history, none receive the same attention as Grand Master Kel, first king of Yar-del. Kel was the second youngest of seven sons born to Bren and Geena, farmers who lived in the ancient kingdom of Kentar in what is now the kingdom of Dumbarten.
At the age of twelve, a wizard-priest recognized his potential and he was sent to the temple of Honorus in Kentar to begin his training. As with most wizards who showed the potential to be a high-level master or grand master wizard, after rudimentary training, he was sent to a temple of Falcon to further his education.
When Kel attained master status, he rejected the traditional roles of a wizard. Instead of remaining with the temple or attaching himself to a king or great lord, Kel returned home to help his family and neighbors better their lives. His choice to use his skills to aid farmers earned him the distain of his contemporaries, but taught him how magic could be used in way others hadn’t envisioned.
Kel had only been home a few years when the Great War began in Trellham. The Six called upon Their supporters and Kel answered the call as one of Honorus’s wizards. Because he left the temple, he’d never been formally granted grand master status. The other great wizards of the day denied Kel a place on the council that guided the war effort and gave him a role supporting the army.
Despite the slight by the other magi, Kel proved himself a powerful wizard during the war, even making friends with Rothdin, King of the peregrines. The fighting ground to a stalemate until Seritia devised a plan to end the war. All it required was a wizard powerful and wise enough to cast the spell.
The wizards on the council each attempted the spell with great fanfare, confident they were the one Seritia meant to do Her bidding. The council rejected Kel’s request to attempt the spell, referring to him as the peasant’s wizard. King Rothdin used his position as the first servant of Honorus to insisted Kel be allowed to try. Because he didn’t accept the conventional wisdom that what had always been done was the only way, he was able to carry out Seritia’s will. On that day the legend was born.
After the war, Honorus sent Kel to the largely unsettled continent of Ardus to found a new kingdom. Kel called his new kingdom Yar-del and put his skills using magic to help the people to good use. Yar-del flourished and its people grew rich.
Knowing that wealth and prosperity often drew enemies, Kel created a Source to help defend his kingdom. Kel’s Source had near infinite storage capacity for magical energy. Unlike other storage containers, the Source allowed multiple wizards to store and call upon arcane power when needed. Kel hoped the Source would give him and his successors an advantage over their enemies. And thought Kel would share many of his discoveries with the world, he kept the spells for creating a Source secret, even from his heirs. Only when one assumed the throne of Yar-del could they unlock the spells.
Kel spent his life trying to find ways to use his powers for the good of the common people instead of the great lords or kings. Even as a king he sought ways to use magic to make the lives of his people better. The great irony of his legacy was history remembered him more for the great magics he created and not the little every day spells he crafted that made daily tasks easier.
At the height of his power, Kel left Yar-del unseen. He left behind a note telling his successor all he needed to know and was not seen in public again. His disappearance fueled two thousand years of speculation as to his whereabouts. At first it was believed he’d grown tired of ruling, and left to return to a simpler life. But as the centuries rolled on and Kel never returned, the speculation turned to the time and manner of his death. It was unheard of even for a wizard to live three thousand years and even the great Kel couldn’t cheat death.
Even in death Kel proved better than his contemporaries as he hid all trace of his passing. Scores of wizards searched in vain for clues about what happened to Kel hoping to find an undiscovered artifact or book of magic.
As the Champion of the Six, Farrell is going to learn that Kel may hold the key to winning the war. As such, we will see many more references to Kel as the series unfolds.