The Lothanasi:

Founded in -800 CR by Lucien, a priest of Kammoloth, the Lothanasi (or Lightbringer) Order quickly became the dominant religion of the lands of the West. It fell into disfavor in the south after the fall of the Suielman Empire, and the monotheistic Ecclesia rose up to take its place. The Lightbringers remained a powerful force in the Sathmoran Empire and the Midlands all the way up to the 700s, but corruption was spreading throughout its temples as High Councilors made unholy pacts with the daedra lords. In 708 this corruption was exposed, and the Order was rocked by a fight for dominance between the servants of the gods and those who had pledged themselves to Ba'al and his kin. The fight took an unexpected turn, however, when Merai hin'Dana turned against both the gods and daedra alike, bringing about the Great Fall and ushering in a new world order. It appeared that Iluvatar, the Creator, had reasserted His/Her/Its presence in the world.

Since that time the Meraist Church has become the primary spiritual successor to the old Lightbringer Order. At the same time, the Lothanasi have evolved into a sort of supernatural police force -- think of a cross between the X-Files, the Men in Black and the CIA. Their job is to keep an eye on all of the gods, demigods, celestials and daedra running around the world and make sure that they cause as little damage as possible to people's lives -- and, where possible, to work deals with these quasi-deities for the mutual benefit of these beings and the mortals around them. They also keep an eye on the vampires, to make sure they aren't causing too much trouble; particularly depraved undead are hunted down and exterminated. Extraplanar beings that cross over into the Prima Materia and threaten mankind, such as dimensional shamblers, are dealt with as quickly, quietly and covertly as possible. The Lothanasi have freedom to operate anywhere within the bounds of the Empire and Quenardya, as long as they notify the proper local authorities of their investigations. Other countries may be more restrictive of the Lothanasi, viewing them as meddlers in others' affairs.

The Lothanasi have shed their traditional white robes in favor of conservative black business suits. (They also have combat uniforms that they use when they know they are going into a hostile situation; these are still white, and fashioned with a mild enchantment to repel dust and dirt.) Between the suits and the black sunglasses that are very popular within the Order, the Lightbringers have quite literally become Men (and Women) in Black. (At least some LBs, however, are still capable of "dressing down" and blending into a crowd when the situation requires it.) With an array of proxy spells supplied by Kyia, as well as their inherent special abilities and an arsenal of enchanted and holy weapons, the LBs are equipped to face almost any supernatural threat.

The LBs' biggest problem is that they've become too arrogant and self-assured over the years. Many agents believe that nothing escapes the Order's attention, and that no supernatural threat exists that they haven't already planned out a strategy to defeat. They are often high-handed in dealing with "mundane" police forces, which has led to friction between the different levels of law enforcement in the Empire. Because of their smug self-confidence, the Order has also begun to miss some important developments that could be crucial later on.

Merai is the unofficial spokeswoman for the Lightbringers in Metamor City. As the oldest living member of the Order -- and the one who caused the Great Fall in the first place -- she has a great degree of influence on LB affairs within the Empire. When she talks, the High Council listens. Unfortunately, changing the attitudes of the individual agents (such as Janus Starson) seems to be beyond even her capabilities.