The First Family
No one knows much about the first humans created by God: Adam and Eve, or their children, Cain and Abel. While the stories of the Garden of Eden and Cain's crime are more or less common knowledge, what happened afterwards has been shrouded by history. Repeated searches of Yves' library have turned up nothing, and if Yves himself knows, he isn't talking
Eve proved unable to handle the dual shocks of being expelled from Eden and the murder of her firstborn by his sibling. After Cain was sentenced to wander the earth for all eternity, Eve's husband Adam fell into a profound depression, and withdrew from his surroundings. As her family crumbled, so did her sanity. Eventually, Eve simply forgot (some say abandoned) her identity and her past, and simply started walking.
Eve no longer knows who she is and cannot remember beyond about 2 weeks into the past. With each town she enters, her story changes. She remembers that she had a husband and two sons, but cannot recall their names. She remembers that her oldest son died, but cannot remember the nature of the 'accident'.
Wherever Eve goes, strange things seem to happen. A person wins the lottery one day, then watches as his house goes up in flames the next. One-in-a-million chances occur with frightening regularity. Subconsciously, eve retains some fragments of her previous life. She is both drawn to and terrified of gardens - she is deathly afraid of apples. And then, just as mysteriously as she appeared, Eve departs, leaving everyone around her confused, but with the lingering sense that they had met someone profoundly special.
Whereas Eve found shelter for the trauma of events in her own madness, Adam forced himself to confront, and eventually come to terms with, the tragic series of events that befell his family. He suffered a deep depression after Abel's murder and Cain's punishment, and the departure of his wife transformed sadness into anger. Adam railed against the universe: how could God, the same being who gave Adam the blissful peace of Eden, who granted to Adam a wife and family even after the Garden was taken away, how could such a God allow this awful thing to happen? Someone, possibly Yves, possibly God Himself, came to Adam and gave him the explanation he asked for: angels, demon, the Symphony - everything.
This knowledge gave Adam a certain degree of peace with the situation, if not contentment. He, like his wife, spent much time wandering the face of the Earth. But Adam was not driven by insanity, but by a desire to learn, to attain ever higher levels of enlightenment.
Adam has not only grown in knowledge and wisdom, but in power as well. Adam is now a mage, a human with the ability to bend reality to his will. Eventually his control over the Symphony became strong enough for him to craft entirely separate realms, albeit small ones. Interludes is his greatest achievement, and was significant enough a creation to attract the attention of Eli himself, over 200 years ago (angels of Creation are still the most frequent visitors to Interludes). Now, Adam is unsure of what happened to his very first patron, although he has his suspicions.
While Adam is friendly enough towards celestials of either stripe, on the whole he disapproves in their meddling of human affairs, for good or ill. He feels that humanity should be allowed to exercise its free will however it chooses, regardless of whether those choices are good or bad. If he ever gets ahold of the balseraph who appeared as a snake in Eden, that is one demon who will not get off easy.
Adam is aware of Eve's plight, and hopes to one day reconcile with his mad wife. One of the primary reasons why he founded Interludes was to provide a place to (hopefully) gather celestial gossip about goings on around the globe, in the hopes of locating Eve. Celestials in Adam's debt may find themselves sent on truly bizarre needle-in-a-haystack missions, attempting to find some clue to Eve's current whereabouts.
Adam knows that Cain is out there, somewhere, and knows that Cain is up to no good (being the only human mage in existence who is more powerful than Cain, he can detect Cain's activity better than almost anyone, celestials included). Adam is not sure just what Cain is planning, but given his apparent state of mind (they have met on a few occasions) and abilities, it can only mean trouble.
And then there was Cain. Cursed by God for murdering his brother, Abel, Cain has been damned to eternal life, sentenced never to know the death that he sent Abel to. The millennia that have followed have not been kind to Cain. Like his father, Cain wields powers beyond even those of the celestials. Like his mother, Cain is totally and utterly insane. The torment of eternal life has pushed Cain over the edge, and now all that drives him is his rage and hatred: against God, against his family, against the entire Symphony which (from his point of view) serves as a perpetual prison.
After many years of wandering, Cain was found by a young, ambitious demon, who offered to teach Cain the darker secrets of the universe: Lillith. Much of what Adam learned from his conversation of the divine, Cain learned (albeit in a lesser, more twisted form) from Lillith. She started him on the path to darkness, gave him the power to control and focus his insanity. However, Cain was unwilling to make the same pledge that Lillith had made: he would not become a vassal of Lucifer, not even for the title of Demon Prince. Cain chose a more solitary, a more dangerous path. Whereas Adam's studies concerned the nature of the universe at large, Cain focused on the bonds of life and death within human beings. He came to understand the nature of the curse God had placed upon him, and discovered that it could also confer power as well. Cain learned to drain the Forces, the very Essence, from other living beings: what he is became known as vampire, although he is far more powerful than the vampires created during a partially successful Black Mass.
Cain uses the life energy of other mortals to fuel his dark magic - he unravels the very core of the Symphony in order to produce his own bizarre, twisted melodies. He has also learned how to transform other humans into beings similar to himself, whom he calls the Kindred (to separate them from the common, everyday vampires). He teaches the Kindred small fragments of what he knows, in exchange for their eternal service to further his dark designs.
And just what does Cain want? He wants nothing less to smash apart the entire universe - to silence the Symphony once and for all. At the very least, he hopes to destroy the corporeal plane, allowing the chaotic madness of the Marches to reign unchecked. At best, he wants to undo it all, and reforge the universe with himself as Chief Executor. Can he pull it off? Maybe - no one knows the ultimate limits of the power of a mage. He knows that his father is watching: Adam, being older and more skilled, could best him in a straight-out one-on-one confrontation, but Cain knows better than to force such a match. He is working from the darkness, slowing gaining power and knowledge.
To this end, Cain employs agents from across reality. Aside from his mortal allies, the Kindred, he has befriended (or, at least, mollified) many of the more malevolent spirits on the Ethereal plane, promising them a chance to run unchecked across the Symphony once more in exchange for information or assistance. He even occasionally takes in Outcasts and Renegades, masquerading as a Superior who wants to bring the celestial "back into the fold" - for just a small price (usually a mission to either Heaven or Hell, places that Cain cannot go). In the end, though, Cain always destroys his helper: he hates all celestials, seeing them as extensions of the God that condemned him so long ago.
A conservative is a liberal who has just been mugged. A liberal is a conservative who has just been booked.
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Elizabeth McCoy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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