The Knights Arcanus consists of powerful magical warriors that have banded together several times during Earth's history to help save magical orders, magic-based communities and most importantly, save Earth from potential and active global threats, mystical or non-mystical.
This current iteration of the Knights Arcanus is the 20th formation of the Knights Arcanus. The original Knights Arcanus came to be centuries ago when created by the magical community known as the "Conglomerate". The 20th formation was created illegally against the Conglomerate's demands by a man who would become known as Samhain Knight in the year 2000 as a result of an alien invasion of Earth and the invader's attempt to rip Earth's magical energies from its core. This current 20th formation continues today, but no longer as mere protectors of just things arcane but instead, now, protect all good people and places, magical and non-magical, from evil - locally, regionally or global.
II. History of the 19th Formation of the Knights Arcanus (1895-1914)
The 19th formation of the Knights Arcanus was initiated due to defrocked arcane mages and their evil, magical creatures threatening to destroy several magical schools across Europe. The 19th's leader was a powerful and imposing Irishman known as the "Celtic Knight".
The Celtic Knight and his brave knights vanquished many a magical threat to the Conglomerate, becoming the vaunted heroes in the eyes of all in the sect. The knights always fought for the Conglomerate and its people, however, at the start of World War I in 1914, the Celtic Knight saw that this war was the first true 'global' war of its kind, and that its ramifications would most likely change the world (as was also told by hundreds of magical 'precogs' and scriers in the Conglomerate as well). In 1914, the Celtic Knight decided, on his own, to add the power of the Knights Arcanus on the side of the Allied (Entente) Powers of Great Britain, France, and Russia in opposition to those of the Central Powers of the German Empire, Ottoman Empire, Bulgaria and Austria-Hungary. The Celtic Knight informed the Conglomerate's leaders, the council of elders, that his decision was the 'right' thing to do. The council of elders, however, saw it differently.
The council of elders did not want the Conglomerate or the Knights Arcanus to be involved in man's non-magical wars, and as such, decided to remove themselves from man's conflict and its war of nations. The elders sent out a message to the Conglomerate's schools of magic of their decision and ordered the Knights Arcanus to return to the Conglomerate's capital, known as the "Citadel", to officially be disbanded.
As the bugle call went out across a European battlefield to for the Allied Powers troops and the Knights Arcanus, side by side, to attack the overwhelming entrenched Central Power's forces, the Celtic Knight received the elders' message from the Conglomerate:
Your request for you and the Knights Arcanus to fight in the non-magical world's so called "Great War" has been denied.
You and the Knights Arcanus will immediately withdraw from your current position and return to the Citadel without delay.
The Conglomerate will take no part in this war nor shall it take sides.
This is the decision of the council and as such is beyond contestation.
Contact the Emerald* upon your return for further orders.
- The Council
(* Note to reader: "Emerald" is a codename for the leader of the Druidic school of magic)
As the British troops ran headlong into a hail of deadly machine-gun fire, grenades and mortars, the mounted knights reluctantly turned and slowly left the battlefield, each knight's head hung low as the Allied Powers' forces were cut down in swathes.
Upon return to the Citadel that same years in 1914, the Celtic Knight fought with the council of elders about the elders' decision. When the council expressly told the Celtic Knight that if he or his knights dared to go against the council, there would be extreme actions placed against him, his knights and their families; actions that could result in being branded treasonous, carrying with it a death penalty. Although unwilling to give in, the Celtic Knight knew the ramifications should he continue down his path. He instead conceded and accepted the council's decision to disband his Knights Arcanus. As per Conglomerate law, each knight who fought valiantly with the Knights Arcanus was commended as a great warrior hero of the Conglomerate, all of which would be granted befitting honors and accolades. Each knight was allowed an opportunity to 'up' their family's position in the Conglomerate's ranks by a whole rank should the the knight chose to allow the council to perform. Most knights did so, thus earning the family increased, entitlements and positional authority in the Conglomerate's ranks.
All but one knight of the 19th reformation chose this option: The Celtic Knight.
The Celtic Knight altered the Conglomerate's arrangement, allowing him to 'down' a few ranks in the Conglomerate's system and instead eventually become the Conglomerate's Master at Arms of the their arcane and mystical weapons vault (see Samhain Knight for more on the rest of that story).
Today, as per the Conglomerate's detailed historical documents and drawings, the 19th Formation of the Knights Arcanus was the last Knights Arcanus to ever form again...however, there WAS an "illegal" 20th formation...
III. The Unofficial History of the "Illegal" 20th Formation of the Knights Arcanus (2000)
Bereft of the Knights Arcanus for the previous 86 years, most magical users on Earth considered the knights to be mythical stories told to their children as bedtime stories. The truth, however, was far different. The knights disbanded as a result of several council leaders from the Conglomerate (a secretive magical order that had governed the knights over the centuries) deciding they no longer wanted to interact with the normal, non-magical world and their devastating wars and politics. As such, the 19th formation of the Knights Arcanus was disbanded by the Conglomerate at the start of what would be considered then as "The Great War", or "The War to End All Wars" and today as "World War I".
The following is an official 'unofficial' account of the 20th formation of the Knights Arcanus that, according to the Conglomerate's records, "never occurred"...
A. PRELUDE - THE INVASION:
In January of 2000 A.D., the Soltan Star Empire invaded Earth. As part of the initial invasion, the Soltans had magical strike forces strategically attack dozens of magical school locations, magical communities and most grievously, secretive magical hospitals.
Within hours, thousands of magical users across the planet were dead; men, women children, animals...none were spared. The Soltans had planned and plotted these attacks to quickly eliminate any chance for the magical community to rise up against the Soltans. As was quickly discovered, the Soltans indeed had a reason for targeting the magic users; the Soltans intended, as part of their invasion efforts, to set up magical energy siphon towers and key Ley Line locations all across the planet where the Soltans would then siphon the entirety of the planet's rich magical energies and store the magical energy in large energy containers that would later be collected and used to power several of the monstrously powerful arcane weapons; weapons that could level cities in one shot. As such, the magical communities were devastated from the initial Soltan onslaught. The few thousand magic users left, for the most part, took refuge in a secretive magical underground location of the Conglomerate known only as "The Citadel".
In the Citadel, those that did make it there, along with those already living there, were under constant attack for months on end by the Soltans. Luckily, the Conglomerate and the Citadel's defenses were too great for the Soltans to breach. Nonetheless, many hundreds died protecting the Citadel's citizens and refugees from the Soltans.
The only formal offensive unit the Conglomerate potentially had was a unit that had been disbanded since the beginning of World War I; a unit knows as the Knights Arcanus. As far as the Conglomerate's council of elders were concerned, that organization would never again be reformed, regardless of the plight the Conglomerate was in.
B. SAMHAIN KNIGHT'S ILLEGAL FORMATION OF THE KNIGHTS ARCANUS
The 20th formation was, yet wasn't, formed within an hour of the first day of the Soltan invasion of Earth. We say, "wasn't" because, officially, as far as the Conglomerate is concerned, the 20th formation was never authorized or for that matter, recognized to exist, as per the Conglomerate's council of elders. The reason for this decision was based on the edict placed upon the last (19th Reformation) Knights Arcanus and also due to the impertinent actions of the Knights Arcanus' self-appointed 20th formation's leader, the Samhain (pronounced "SAH-win") Knight.
The Conglomerate, rather than form a new iteration of the Knights Arcanus, instead decided to stay hidden and engage defensive measures against the Soltans rather than engage the invaders offensively. Refugees from the bombed-out and attacked magical schools and magical locations found their way to the Conglomerate's hidden underground Citadel (or were transported by family and/or friends) from all around the world.
The Master at Arms for the Conglomerate, a man know as Sir Samuel Shane (AKA Samhain Knight), within minutes of the invasion, broke time-honored protocols and arcane law by personally putting out the word that any in the Citadel willing to join him in taking the fight to the Soltans as part of the newest formation of the Knights Arcanus, were to meet him in the Conglomerate's Main Armory within the hour. As the new knights started to filter in, Sir Shane walked through the armory and started selecting weapons, armor, devices and artifacts he would require for his new knights. A handful of magistrates and a couple of council members screamed at Sir Shane, demanding he put back each of the armory's items, only for Sir Shane to return comment that he was now to be called "The Samhain Knight" and that he, as his last act as Master at Arms, would take whatever weapons he deemed necessary in the fulfillment of his duty as a knight of the Knights Arcanus.
The arrogance and confidence towards the magistrates and council members was unheard of.
Decades later, Samhain Knight's legendary actions will only be spoken of in whispers, never to be formally taught, recorded or written, as per the decree of the the Conglomerate's council of elders.
In mere minutes of Samhain Knight's start of his weapons collection in the Conglomerate's Main Armory, over five dozen mystics and want-to-be warriors joined him in raiding the armory of some of its most powerful battlefield weapons. By the time the rest of the Conglomerate's council arrived at the armory to stop Samhain Knight and his new 'knights', they had already left the Conglomerate to engage in battle with the Soltans, taking with him a few hundred powerful, and in some cases, devastatingly dangerous weapons, armor and mystical artifacts.
Over the next several months, the Knights Arcanus added to their ranks, while also sadly losing many in battles. The Conglomerate did not 'recognize' Samhain Knight's formation of the Knights Arcanus and as such, did not support him or his knights. The Council elders even went as far as to call these news knights "outlaws", preventing them from ever returning to the Conglomerate, or their own homes, under penalty of death. Even the knights who died in battle were not allowed to have their remains returned to their family for proper funeral rights, honors or interment.
Regardless of the Conglomerate council of elder's lack of support, Samhain Knight led his knights with the valor of a knight and the decisiveness of a true leader. None of the knights ever questioned Samhain Knight's leadership. Most of the knights stated that as far as they were concerned, Sahmain Knight was the greatest knight ever in the history of the Knights Arcanus.
Sadly, several months into the 2000 Soltan invasion, nearly all of the Knights Arcanus would die in battle against the Soltans.
Over the several months from the Knights Arcanus' 20th reformation by their leader, Samhain Knight, the knights had brought down all but one of the Soltan's magical siphoning towers erected on Earth - the one located in China.
With only a dozen tired and wounded knights left, Samhain Knight led their final charge against a massive Soltan stronghold around the siphon tower. What normally would be considered a bloodbath and a suicide run against the Soltans instead became a hallmark as one of the world's greatest battles.
Prior to the Great Battle of the Final Soltan Siphon Tower, the Knights Arcanus had fought alongside dozens of military units all across the world, even assisting several super-powered heroes (and villains) in their fight against the Soltans. As such, when the Knights Arcanus performed what they perceived would be their final charge, the world's superheroes, super-villans, and military soldiers, airmen and sailors all came to fight together in an epic battle royal to destroy the tower. Fighter jets fought in the skies above, the world's navies bombarded enemy positions with rail guns and missiles from the ships at sea and thousands of nations' troops, all working together, joined Samhain Knight and his beleaguered knights on their final great push to destroy the tower.
The combined forces of the remaining Knights Arcanus and their world allies not only destroyed the Soltan siphon tower but directly led to the retreat of the Soltan Invasion forces.
An unexpected resultant of the destruction of the last tower was the release of all Soltan siphoned and stored magical energy being released back into Earth's Ley Lines. In addition to this, the rate and volume of the magic being released into the Ley Lines was greater than ever before in Earth's history. Earth not only got its magical energies back, but at 400% of its previous capacity, making the Earth one of the largest and most powerful storehouse of magical energy in the universe overnight.
Within hours of the massive battle, the Soltans retreated from Earth and fell back to a base located on the dark side of the planet Mars. Thanks to Samhain Knight, the few remaining Knights Arcanus and Earth's protectors, the Soltan invasion of Earth was routed. For the first time in galactic history, the conquering Soltan Star Empire had finally been defeated; a feat that no other planet or cosmic alliance had ever done before. Now that the war was over, Samhain Knight had to face the music for his actions against the Conglomerate.
C. THE POST-INVASION PARLAY
The Conglomerate survived the Soltan's incessant attacks against the Citadel, however, a majority of their magical population, schools and elders were lost in as a result of the invasion. After the Soltans retreated from Earth, the council retracted the Citadel's magical defense shields, wards and screens. Samhain Knight sent a message shortly thereafter to the council, asking them to meet him at a prearranged time for a secret parlay at a neutral magical meeting site at Arthur's Seat in northern England, where they would, as gentlemen and ladies, discuss their future and hopefully resolve their differences. The council agreed and days later, Samhain Knight and the Conglomerate's remaining council of elders met at Arthur's Seat.
At the parlay, several critical issues were immediately brought up by the council of elders that, as far as they were concerned, required immediate resolution.
One such issue was the knights' lack of retention of the 'stolen' Conglomerate's weapons, most of which were lost and strewn across dozens of battlefields worldwide during the invasion. The council demanded that all existing weapons in the knights' charge be returned to the Conglomerate's armory within a day's time of the parlay and that the knights would to be blamed for the loss of each of the currently missing or lost items that Samhain Knight initially 'stole' from the Conglomerate's Main Armory. Sadly, Samhain Knight concurred that upon the successful conclusion of their parlay, he'd return all of the knights' weapons they still retained and give them back to the Conglomerate; all except Deathknight and its weapons (Deathknight was considered an 'abomination' by the council of elders who instead blamed the ostracized Death school of magic for setting it free). Samhain Knight even offered to return his favorite sword he'd used since the start of the invasion.
Another issue of the council's concern was that the knights were never officially authorized to form, and as such, Samhain Knight and his knights' actions, although heroic, would neither be allowed to be written nor chronicled EVER. All of the knights' historical battles and each knight's legacy that was part of the 20th formation of the knights would never be recorded nor retained for posterity or historical purposes. Anything regarding divulging the 20th reformation of the Knights Arcanus was considered a crime by the council of elders, as as such punishable by 10 years of imprisonment in the Citadel's dungeons.
Since Samhain Knight and his fellow knights' actions were considered the highest form treason in the Conglomerate, such punishment normally came with a death penalty. Noting the fact that the knights fought and 'saved the world' as it were, the council instead compromised. Instead, the surviving knights of the 20th reformation were not allowed to return home or enter the jurisdiction of the Conglomerate under penalty of death.
Samhain Knight, from the start of the parlay, slowly morphed unto that of a demoralized and chastised child against the overbearing authoritarian mob that was the council. Samhain Knight could do little but continue to concede to their wishes, one after the other, with little to no choice. The next issue, however, was the straw that broke the camel's back:
The fallen knights of the 'illegal' 20th reformation of the Knights Arcanus, according to the council, would NOT be allowed to be buried or processed with honors on family or Conglomerate grounds...at all.
The Conglomerate council of elders, instead, decreed that if a grave, marker, stone or reference to any of the 20th reformation's knights was ever discovered anywhere on the Conglomerate's territories, said items would be destroyed and the knight's immediate family members, whether they are innocent or not, would be imprisoned for a period not to exceed 10 years in a Conglomerate prison. The elders also pushed the fact that if any said references were found 'outside' of the Conglomerate's expanse, they also would have it destroyed, regardless of the laws of the location's nation, state or region.
Samhain Knight quietly rose from his previously seated, chided position and stood before the council with an imposing stance of a knightly leader. He then decreed that the council WILL strike their last 'decree' regarding the interment and disposition of his valorous, heroic knights or the parlay would end and no resolution would occur for any of the council's 'concerns'.
The council cautiously conferred in whispers over Samhain Knight's stand on the issue, returning to him stating they remained unmoved on their previous decree.
Samhain Knight gathered his sword and stated in his commandeering voice that the Knights Acanus would not abide by the council's decision nor would he grant the council's requests to any of their 'concerns' brought forth during the parlay. Instead, Samhain Knight said he'd continue to lead the knights actively until his death or such circumstance where he would no longer be considered the leader of the knights as per the knights' code. Until that time, Samhain Knight said he'd continue his honor-bound duty to protect the magical world and its citizens from evil, but that he'd now also be helping the 'non-magical' world and its citizens, superheroes and super-groups as needed from that point on. He mentioned that if the council did indeed need the knights again, secretly or otherwise, his knights would answer the call regardless of the council's politics.
After the parlay ended, the council secretly met again back at the Citadel.
D. THE COMPROMISE
At the Citadel, the council agreed to send their agents to consistently dog Samhain Knight to follow through with the council's demands. They also wanted to hound Samhain Knight to divulge each of the knights' past and current exploits to ensure that the knights' "unsupervised illegal operations" didn't create any new major magic-related incidents or apocalypses without the council's knowledge (so as to be prepared to stop or correct said incidents and/or apocalypses). After great discussion, the council realized that actively engaging to oust Samhain Knight from the Knights Arcanus' leadership would only lead to another of his knights taking his spot and becoming more toxic and unwilling to work with the council, thus the council agreed to secretly 'allow' Samhain Knight's continued 'illegal' operation of the Knights Arcanus so long as he and the knights helped them out with the council's needs. The council's edicts were still in effect against the Knights Arcanus, however, so long as the knights didn't perform any additional transgressions against the council or the Conglomerate, or return to any of the Conglomerate's lands or holdings, the council would not actively 'pursue' the Knights Arcanus capture.
Through whispered conversations, the citizens of the Conglomerate told the story of the 20th reformation of the Knights Arcanus and their heroic acts and bravery. To this day, no one has been allowed to officially speak, write, or even draw pictures and/or images of those knights for fear of persecution or magic interrogation. Nonetheless, some of the the citizens of the Conglomerate secretively look to the Knights Arcanus as unsung heroes and at times, are caught supporting, discussing or writing about their recent or past exploits. Those 'sympathizers' were jailed and forced to await trial for their crimes. What the council won't tell its own citizenry is that each jailed sympathizer was sprung from each of their cells within 24 hours after their initial arrest. No clues have ever been revealed about how they got free and interestingly enough, the council never seems to follow up with a standard manhunt for those sympathizers that have escaped. It almost seems like the council has turned a blind eye to the current knights AND the disposition of the liberated sympathizers...
IV. TODAY'S KNIGHTS ARCANUS
In the Major Deej Universe, the rest of the world outside of the Conglomerate knows of the Knights Arcanus existence as well as the team's leader, Samhain Knight. What 99.999% of them don't know is about the Conglomerate's existence or their citizenry of the multiple magical schools that make up the whole of the Conglomerate. As far as John Q. Citizen knows, the Knights Arcanus is just another super group, albeit 'strange' in nature. The Knights Arcanus is officially registered under the Super-powered Registration Act (SRA) and is sanctioned as an official super-heroic team as long as Samhain Knight remains the leader of the group.
Today, the Knights Arcanus consist of between a half dozen to a dozen knights. Several 'knight errants' live and train amongst the knights, working hard for months if not years at a time, striving for the day they are finally tasked to perform their trial to be tested in earning the title of a true knight of the Knights Arcanus. The Knights Arcanus group not only continues its long, noted and honorable duty of protecting the magical citizenry of Earth, but has also added a new duty towards helping the normal people and superheroes of the world to battle, as allies, against world-class dangers and threats. The Conglomerate still considers each of the knights and their knight errants of the Knights Arcanus as 'outlaws' that, to this day, will never be allowed to return to any of the properties or territories under the auspice of the Conglomerate, under penalty of death or incarceration for the rest of that person's life.
La Hacienda (accessible via portal) underground stronghold
The "Mystical Knights" was the original name of this super group, created on 8 Sep 2007 by Don "Major Deej" Finger. The group's initial leaders was and continues to be Samhain Knight. On 22 June 2011, the group's creator changed the super group name to "The Exalted", but changed it back to Mystical Knights by 30 Nov 2012. On 17 May 2016, the creator changed the super group name once more, this time from "Mystical Knights" to the current "Knights Arcanus", due to concerns of the original super group's overuse of the "Mystical Knights" name and potential trademark issues that could ensue in the future.