Champion of Balance

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In Ophidian society, a Champion of Balance was an officer appointed by a Great Hierophant of Balance to enforce his or her orders.

Description[edit]

As the Great Hierophant was to be an impartial judge of his or her people, it was forbidden for one holding the office of Great Hierophant to directly act those who defied his or her decrees. The enforcement of the Hierophant's orders and of Ophidian doctrine in general, therefore, fell to an individual who had been appointed as the Champion of Balance. Those who held this station were chosen from among the Great Hierophant's acolytes and were permitted to go and do battle with those who had transgressed against the word of the Hierophant.[1] Their status was denoted by an artifact known as the Amulet of Balance, which could be worn by none save such a Champion lest the magical properties of the article strike them dead.[2][3]

The last Great Hierophant, Ssithnos, did not appoint a Champion before his death; however, in the days following his demise, a belief grew that someday a final Champion of Balance would appear to both avenge Ssithnos and to restore balance to the land.[4][3] This figure, among other things, was to plant the Silver Seed that would grow into a renewed Tree of Balance, whose presence on Serpent Isle would serve to help renew the Imbalance-stricken world.[5]

Centuries after the fall of Ophidian civilization and shortly prior to the Avatar's arrival on Serpent Isle, the Xenkan Monk Miggim uncovered the Amulet of Balance in the vicinity of Monk Isle's Serpent Gate alongside an ancient scroll that seemingly outlined its significance. The document disintegrated, however, before Miggim could decipher most of it, and the only pieces of information he managed to glean were the name of the Amulet and the notion that it was to be used at a Serpent's Gate.

Thinking that this artifact may be of use to the prophesied "Stranger from Another World," the elder monk Karnax passed the Amulet on to the Avatar, relaying the story of its discovery.[6] The hero, upon using it, was transported through both time and space to the outpost of Serpent's Fang at the late days of the War of Imbalance. Here, the denizens of the keep recognized the Avatar as being the Champion of Balance whose coming had been foretold, although the hero's ignorance of Ophidian culture and history left many of them with doubts as to whether or not they were correct in this surmise. Ultimately, however, the Avatar would win their way through a number of perils, retrieve the magical orbs necessary to secure the Silver Seed, and plant a new Tree of Balance, thus fulfilling the terms of the prophecy.

Trivia[edit]

  • According to Elissa, there were only four times in Ophidian history in which the intervention of a Champion of Balance was necessary. In all of these cases, those who stood in defiance of the Hierophant were among those living outside of the principles of Order and Chaos.[1]
  • The Avatar appears to be the only individual to ever serve both as Hierophant of Balance and as Champion of Balance.

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 ElissaPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "Champion of Balance".
  2. IsstanarPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "Champion of Balance".
  3. 3.0 3.1 TsandarPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "warrior of prophecy".
  4. ElissaPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "stories".
  5. IsstanarPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "Silver Seed, what lies ahead".
  6. KarnaxPaul Carr's Ultima TranscriptsUltima VII Part Two. "Amulet of Balance, discovery".