by Max Barry

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The Iron Empire of
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The Healing Church of Ferrum Caelum

★ Ferrum Sangvis ★
"In the name of guiding humanity down the right path."

The Healing Church of Ferrum Caelum

"In order to attain a higher plane of existence, we seek the Old Blood."
"All is in the name of guiding humanity down the right path."

The Church

The Healing Church is a religious organization founded in Ferrum Caelum by Calne Ca, a former student of [REDACTED] who discovered a special concoction of Old Blood discovered within the ancient labyrinths that could be used in a healing process known as Machine Blood Ministration. While [REDACTED] did not fully trust the blood, Calne Ca believed it to be a miracle and created the church to distribute the blood across the city.

The Old Blood

Old Blood is a term used to refer to the blood of the Great Ones or the powerful Kin that can be considered Great Ones.

The Old Blood was discovered by the Lux Scholars within the tombs of the Gods, carved below Ferrum Caelum. The blood has great potent healing properties and also the capability of evolving mankind.

The first experiment must have had mixed results as [REDACTED], provost of the school, feared it and took the phrase "Fear the Old Blood" as his mantra.

However, Calne Ca, one of the scholars, saw the potential usage of the blood and departed from the school, forming the Healing Church where she studied the blood and spread it to the public as miraculous treatment.

Great Ones

The Healing Church has pursued a strange goal for a long, long time: to summon or harness the power of the Great Ones, beings not of this world, powerful enough to be seen as gods. Worshiped by most, either directly or indirectly, Great Ones are Eldritch beings that reside on a higher plane than humanity.

They were here, in the labyrinth, long ago. They appear to be much closer than you'd think. At Lux, men were sent into the labyrinth, and an academy was built to understand the strange discoveries inside, generally called the Truth.

Whether or not the Great Ones are actually gods or just higher levels of beings is inconsequential, the question itself is entirely academic. The important thing is that they exist. They have an influence on the world. They appear to be ageless, but they can be killed. Their powers are strange things, often involving teleportation or energy or things that the human world cannot do. Even perceiving the Great Ones properly requires great amounts of Insight, something [REDACTED] tried to do, at his own cost.

One of strongest Great Ones appears to be the Moon Presence. Others are Kos, Oedon, Rom, Mergo, Amygdala, the Celestial Emissary, the Brain of Mensis, and Ebrietas. Oedon, one of their number, has transcended beyond the others, to the point that he no longer has a physical body but instead is just a voice and an influence. He is very powerful and has become sort of "timeless", thus potentially making him the most powerful, yet the most indirect, of the Great Ones.

Machine Blood Ministration

Machine Blood Ministration is the process of curing disease and ailments in Ferrum Caelum through blood transfusion, blood-letting, and machine augments. Blood transfusion is generally the process of receiving blood or blood products into one's circulation intravenously. Blood-letting is the withdrawal of blood from a patient to cure or prevent illness and disease. The machine augments allow the patient to circulate the Old Blood.

The process of going through Machine Blood Ministration is what creates Dolls. A patient effectively isn't human afterwards. Over time, as the process was researched and perfected, the Dolls slowly became more machine-like with their internal organs. They are practically machines that resemble humans in outward appearance only. Dolls keep their humanity for the most part.

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