Sir Aulus Cassius Atieus, Grandmaster of the Nine
|Sir Aulus Cassius Atieus|
|Sir Aulus Cassius as the Grandmaster of the Nine|
|Age:||Believed to be 28|
|Affiliation:|| The Imperial Pantheon, The Order of the Nine, The Empire, and The Barony of Graystone
"I serve Talos and the Eight. I know my duty. I cannot be intimidated fiend. Now let us finish this."
Sir Aulus Cassius Atieus is a highborn Imperial, and has distant relations to a good number of Cyrodiil's nobility. He was born the second of five sons in the barony of Graystone, the seat of House Atieus for centuries. From birth, he was promised to the Order of the Nine, and left for the Order at the age of eight and served as a page. He was knighted and inducted into the Order of Talos at the age of sixteen, and was widely considered one of the best fighters among the Order. In 4E 300, he and the whole Order of Talos quested in the cold and unforgiving land of Skyrim. Upon his return, Sir Matthas "The White", chose him as his successor-apparent. He was voted as both a Knight of the Nine, and the Order of Talos commander in 4E 303. After receiving visions from Talos, he adventured alone for three years until he was summoned back by Grandmaster Pelvyn Ordia. He joined the knights in a quest deep within the Black Marsh, and returned with only two other knights. He was the only knight of the three that could wield Chrysamere, and henceforth has been Grandmaster of the Order, the sixth to bear the honor. He has since rebuilt the Order, and has pledged his fealty to Emperor Remaunes Cardes. He now prepares his Order for the final conflict between men and mer, and he has no intention of losing.
Aulus Cassius Atieus was born in 4E 279 to Lord Wynder Crastus Atieus and Lady Remana of Leyawiin. Born the third child and second son, his father Wynder promised him as a babe to the Order of the Nine. When Aulus was still young, his mother passed away during childbirth in the year 4E 283. Lord Wynder would later remarry that year, and Aulus would grow close with his new stepmother Kyla of Wayrest. At the age of eight, the young Aulus was sent to the Order as a noble page, and was educated on etiquette, history, religion, and administration. His stepmother would visit him often until her death in 4E 289. His father would also pass away that year, leaving the young Sir Marcus Cassander Atieus lord of Graystone. When Aulus turned twelve in 4E 291, he was chosen by Sir Llewellyn War-Forge as a squire. He squired for Llewellyn for four years until Aulus turned sixteen in 4E 295, when he was knighted by Sir Matthas "The White" into the Order of Talos.
He would train and partake in many quests and operations within Cyrodiil for the next five years. In the year 300 of the fourth era, Sir Matthas learned of a necromancer liar near Solitude in the distant land of Skyrim. Leading all of the knights from his order, Matthas engaged the necromancers in their liar of Pinemoon Cave. Early in the battle, Aulus became separated from the other knights, and had to fight his way through the caverns of undead by himself. He slew countless undead and necromancers until he rendezvoused with the rest of the order knights. It was Aulus who slayed the necromancer leader Manna in single combat. After the order returned to Cyrodiil, he was chosen as the successor-apparent by Sir Matthas. In 4E 303, he was voted into the Knights of the Nine by his follow comrades within the Order of Talos. He would not remain in the Fortress of the Nine for much longer though, as he had visions of evil stirring in the land of Skyrim and Morrowind. He would set out by himself for the next three years.
The Lone Knight of the Nine
Sir Aulus's travels took him across Northern Tamriel, from the ash wastes of Morrowind to the shores of Western Hammerfell. He would often travel alone, doing good deeds and preaching the word of Talos. He returned periodically to Graystone Castle to visit and assist his brother Marcus in managing the barony. At this time, Aulus took a squire from Riverwood named Melinda. It is unknown what happened to her, or the extend of her and Aulus's relationship. Aulus has never spoken of her directly to anyone for nearly four years.
What Aulus has said about his self-induced seclusion is that he has never felt closer to his patron god Talos. He claims that when he prayed within the bowels of Sancre Tor, Talos manifested himself in his human form and spoke to him, saying he was destined for greatness. Whether or not Aulus spoke the truth, he was widely known and well respected by the people of the Empire before rising to Grandmaster status. His antics and questing changed many lives, and he maintains connections throughout Northern Tamriel still to this day.
His adventures ended in 4E 306, when Grandmaster Pelvyn Ordia summoned the knights back to the Fortress of the Nine. He returned sometime in mid 306, and would partake in a most dangerous and secretive quest in the Order's history.
The Quest in the Black Marsh
Little is known about why Grandmaster Pelvyn Ordia was obsessed with questing in the Black Marsh. He often spoke of a "grave" evil rising from within the deep marshland of the Argonian homeland. Years before the actual quest began, Pelvyn journeyed to the Black Marsh often, and drained some of the Order's treasury preparing for the quest. The quest was so secretive that the other Orders were not informed of the departure of the Knights until the night of their departure.
The quest took the knights across the boggy wasteland. Aulus recalls Black Marsh as a "hell" of a land, where the very air seems to strangulate mankind. The Argonians also did not welcome the knights, viewing them with distrust and accusing them of being Dunmer spies. The last known sighting of the knights was in late 4E 306, when they went into the heart of the thick boggy marsh.
Sir Aulus does not speak of what they uncovered, and even the other two surviving knights only refer to the quest as a "success". Upon returning to the Fortress in the last days of 4E 306, the three knights have swore an oath of silence on the matter, and have burned or removed all tomes of their quest. They brought no treasure with them, and the three remain scarred to this day about what transpired in the Black Marsh. Sir Arruns Nepius states that without Aulus, "Not one knight would have survived the hell that was the Black Marsh Crusade."
The sixth Grandmaster of the Order
Upon their return Sir Aulus, Titus, and Arruns now had to see which of them was worthy of the Grandmaster title. Sir Titus could not wield Chrysamere, he stated it was too heavy. Sir Arruns held it for a mere second, before it came crashing down and nearly split his foot to two. It was Sir Aulus that lifted the sword from the ground, and casually returned it to its scabbard, and placed it within its chest. When he turned to face the other knights, they bowed, and explained to him that he had just lifted the sword, making him Grandmaster of all the Knight Orders. Sir Aulus was dumb stricken by the revelation, and recovered the sword again from its chest. He could indeed lift and wield the blade, a sign from the Divines he was meant to lead the Knights. At the age of twenty eight, he was recognized as the new Grandmaster, the youngest ever to be granted that title.
For the next few months, six knights were voted and accepted into the Nine, their vows overseen by Grandmaster Aulus. Now Aulus is preparing the Order for war against the Dominion, a war that will shake the foundations of Tamriel for the next Era. The knights are training vigorously to lead the vanguard against the elves, as Pelinal did many Eras ago against Umaril and the Ayleids. War is coming to Tamriel, and Aulus knows that defeat is not an option.
Sir Aulus is seen as a very pious and proper man. He is respectful, honest, and dutiful. He believes strongly in the Empire, and views the Dominion as a Pro-Ayleid upstart. While he vehemently opposes the Aldmeri Dominion, he bears no personal grudge against any mer whom openly accept Talos. In fact, he was the first Grandmaster in the Order's history to accept an elf into the ranks of the Order. He is honorable and grim, and will not strike down an innocent or defenseless person. He believes in repentance and the mercy of Stendarr.
Lord Wynder Atieus, father, deceased
Lady Remana Atieus, mother, deceased
Lady Kyla of Wayrest, stepmother, deceased
Lord Marcus Atieus, elder brother, 34
Lady Myrtha Umbranox, sister in law, 31
Wynder Aulus Atieus, nephew, 4
Lady Tirena Goldfyre, sister, 30
Lord Maccus Goldfyre, brother in law, 41
Sir Uriel Atieus, brother, 26
Sir Nero Atieus, bother, 26
Sir Cassander Atieus, brother, 25