The Branded Triad are three powerful Archfiends within the Lower Planes. These three malevolent entities have a common origin, though they no longer work with one another. The three were once respected Angels, and great champions for good. However the machinations of the god Vecna caused them to be cast from their positions of reverence.
- Glazriel, the Angel of Gathering Darkness - Glazriel was possibly the most deeply effected by her banishment of the four Angels. While Cavarephon sought a way to return to the Upper Planes, and Bralgarot and Velgethor went to pursue their own ambitions, Glazriel nurtured her grudge against the forces of good. She eventually became a Fiend of great power, and she now seeks to unite the Lower Planes so that she may begin a dark crusade, and destroy the forces of good for all eternity.
- Velgethor, the Reclaimer - Velgethor had always been hungry for glory and prestige. Thus it is little wonder that he chose to throw his lot in with the lawful Devils of Baator. While the Fallen Angel had felt a deep resentment for the good forces that condemned him, he was more concerned with regaining power than with revenge, unlike Glazriel. He now serves as one of the Dukes of Hell in the Court of Lord Mephistopheles in Cania. He and Bralgarot have a deep hatred for one another due to being on opposite sides of the Blood War.
- Bralgarot, Prince of the Fallen - Bralgarot had always been disciplined. Even Velgethor had viewed him as being stiff. In turth he had been a hot tempered Angel. He was by his nature impulsive. However he never acted upon his impulses. This is because he viewed himself as a servant, and he restrained himself because he believed to act in an unrestrained manner was inappropriate. When he was banished he finally felt free. Free of others commanding him, free of the pressures of expectations, and ultimately free to pursue all that he had been denying himself. This included his darker impulses. Bralgarot inevitably ended up in the Abyss where he became a powerful Demon Lord.
Cavarephon, Gazriel, Velgethor and Bralgarot were originally four Solar Angels that served the gods within the Upper Planes. The four of them got along well, and became known as the Four Shining Comrades. Each was a great champion for good in their own right, but together they were truly a force to be reckoned with in the Outer Planes.
At some undetermined point in time the four Angels were tasked by the gods with an important duty. They were to protect a nascant god of good alignment that was forming in Elysium. The four of them set about their task with dedication. However the task would also be their downfall.
Fall from GraceEdit
The Foul god Vecna set his sites upon this newly forming power. In his quest to become the only god in existence a new deity would prove a nuisance. Thus he hatched a plot to destroy the god before it fully formed. He dispatched his agents, and using misdirection and deception managed to get past the Shining Comrades and successfully murder the god. Furthermore the task was done in such a way that the four Angels were implicated.
The Angels stood before the gods and Celestials of the Upper Planes as they stood trial for their crime. The four of them desperately pleaded their innocence, but it was to no avail. Vecna had executed his scheme so perfectly that all evidence of the crime pointed to the god's Angelic guardians. The four Angels were sentenced to exile to the Lower Planes for their crime, and they were cast down.
The four of them fell a great distance, all the way from Elysium, past the Outlands and finally to the Gray Wastes. All the while their forms burned with fire from their meteoric fall, burning their once white wings black. They struck the ground of the Gray Waste's first layer, Oino like four great balls of fire from the heavens. When they awoke they found themselves in the plane of pure evil. They had been stripped of much of their former power as punishment, and now they would have to fight for their survival amongst the very Fiends they had once fought against.
A Diverging of PathsEdit
Soon after having arrived at the Gray Wastes there appeared to be a difference of opinion upon what action they should take. Cavarephon was determined to right what was wrong. He wanted to try and return to the Upper Planes, and clear their good names. However he found that his compatriots were not of the same mind. They all felt betrayed by the unfair punishment that the forces of good had given them, and no longer wished to go back and serve them. Gazriel in particular had been devastated by the exile, and the other three were concerned that her sanity may have been shattered by the emotional trauma.
Cavarephon tried desperately to persuade the other. However his arguments fell on deaf ears. The others no longer felt any wish to serve the forces of good, and their dedication had been replaced by resentment. Saddened by his friends' refusal to return to the path of good, Cavarephon set out to escape the Lower Planes on his own.
The remaining three fallen Angels stuck together for a time, staying a live in a world that was fundamentally hostile to them. However Velgethor and Bralgarot began to have concerns about Glazriel's state of mind, and motives. Glazriel began speaking of getting revenge on those that had wronged them. She spoke of returning to the Upper Planes and bathing them in a sea of fire for their transgressions. While Velgethor and Bralgarot felt bitter towards the ones that wronged them, and would not pass up the chance to get revenge if it presented itself, the two of them were not interested in prusuing Glazriel's insane vendetta. With heavy hearts the two of them abandonned her.
Champion of DarknessEdit
On her own Glazriel wandered the Gray Waste, all the while fighting for her survival against the numerous evil Fiends that populated Hades. All the while her grudge continued to grow more potent. As it did she became more, and more wicked, as her hatred twisted her once pure spirit.
Eventually she came across one of the great, malevolent beings knwn as Baernoloths. She did battle with the Baernoloth, but she was no match for the primordial creature of evil in her fallen state. She was defeated, and she prepared herself to be slain by the evil creature. However this was not to be her fate. The Baernoloth had sensed her growing hatred of the forces of good, It recognized that Glazriel could potentially become a great champion for the forces of evil.
The Baernoloth spared Glazriel's life. In return it offered to make her its apprentice. It would teach her powerful secrets of evil that she could use to pursue her vendetta. Glazriel accepted, and began to learn from the ancient evil entity. As time went on she grew and power, and as she did the teaching of the Baernoloth twisted her spirit. In the end Glazriel became a powerful fiend. When it felt that it had shaped Glazriel enough the Baernoloth went on its own way, confident that it had brought a dangerous new force of darkness into existence.
Glazriel began to bring numerous Fiends into her service. Slowly building a powerful army the Angel of the Gathering Darkness has been preparing for her ultimate goal. That being the unification of the Lower Planes, and the beginning of a foul crusade to destroy the Planes of Good forever.
Law and ChaosEdit
Velgethor and Bralgarot continued on their way. They found their path fraught with peril. The two ofthem got caught in a battle of the Blood War, caught in between the Diaboloical and Demonic forces. The pair managed to survive by taking refuge in a nearby cave. They started to discuss where they were going to go from there. They had refused to join Cavarephon in his quest for redemption, and they had rejected supporting Glazriel in her vendetta.
So the question was what they inteded to do with the rest of their eternity in exile. Their discussion was interrupted when a small flying creature entered their cave. The creature was an Imp. Before the two of them could react the Imp introduced himself as Hemazar. He stated that he was taking refuge from the battle as well. At first the two of them were going to smite the tiny fiend, bu they realized him as posing no threat. Hemazar then said that he had overheard their conversation, and that if they were openminded he had a solution for them. That solution was to join the Devils of Baator. They were always looking for new warriors, and if the two of them proved themselves to be skilled then they may rise to a position of power.
Suddenly a tiny Angel appeared on Bralgarot's right shoulder, imploring the two of them not to embrace the Imp's evil. The three of them stared at the Angel, dumbstruck until the Angel gave a mischievious cackle. It then transformed into a Quazit. The tiny Demon introduced itself as Brek. He told the two to disregard the Imp, for follwing his advice would only lead them into servitude. He then stated that only the Abyss offered true freedom, and the path to absolute power.
This aggravated Hemazar, who promptly started arguing with Brek. This argument quickly became a fight. Eventually the two Angels broke the fight up, and told the two that they were leaving. At this the Brek urged them to wait and hear him out. The Demon stated that he was too weak to survive and encounter with Diabolical forces, but he also had much knowledge about the Lower Planes. If the two Fallen Angels would allow him to travel with them he would use his expertice to aid them. At this Hemazar stated that he too had knowledge that could aid them, and that it would be far better to take him along instead since it would be foolish to trust the word of a Demon.
The two former Angels knew well that both of the Fiends probably had ulterior motives. Both Imps and Quazits specialized in corrupting other to evil. However they were in a difficult spot. They could most certainly use the Knowledge that the two Fiends possessed. Finally Velgethor had an idea. They would take both of them. They would have access to their knowledge, and the two Fiends would foil each other's tricks simply to spite his opposite.
The two of them continued to travel within the Grey Waste, now with their two Fiendish escorts. They explored this world, and had a number of adventures. All the while the Imp and the Quazit spoke to them, each urging them to commit acts of evil either in a Lawful or Chaotic fashion. They also spoke of the rewards they could reap. Velgethor began to seriously consider joining the Devils of Baator. The power and the prestige that could be attained was very appealing to him.
He tried to convince Bralgarot to come with him, but he found his friend had other ideas. Bralgarot had been tired of serving others, and having to deny his desires and iumpulses for the sake of others. The idea of serving in the byzantine labyrinth of Diobolical politics felt like slavery to him. Instead he decided he wanted to become a Demon, and finally take power for himself. The two split ways knowing that there was a godd chance that when they next met it would be as enemies.
Velgethor made his way to Baator, and became a Devil. Eventually he became one of the Dukes of Hell. He joined the court of Mephistohpheles in the 8th Hell, Cania. Velgethor has sense grown in status and power. One of the most active Devils on the planes outside of Baator, Velgethor has contributed considerably to the Blood War, and has recently begun conquests within the Lawful Planes and the Prime Material Plane.
Bralgarot moved to the Abyss, and began his climb to power. He conquered a layer of the Abyss called the Exile's Dominion. He did so by killing the former Demon Lord of the layer. Bralgarot quickly began accumulating enemies and allies in the Abyss, and he also began fighting in thye Blood War where he clashed many time with Velgethor.
All three of the Branded triad have been very busy. Each of them has launched numerous attacks on the Prime Material Plane, and the Upper Planes. Recently Bralgarot and Velgethor have grown somewhat tired of the consant grind of the Blood War and started to Launch their conquest upwards throug the Lawful and Chaotic Planes.
Glazriel has not rested in her attmpets to unify the Lower Planes. Recently she has made serious headway by getting Velgethor and bralgarot to temporarily put down their swords. Rumor has it that the three are currently hatching a plot, though nobody knows what they plan. Whatever it is it can not be good.
The forms of the three Fiends have changed considerably since their time as Angels. However all three of the Branded Triad have kept one trait from their past lives. Their blackened wings. The wings of their once angelic forms were scorched black when they fell from the Celestial Planes. These balck wings are still born by the Branded Triad today. For them it is a reminder of their fall from grace, and the unfair punishment they suffered at the hands of the forces of good. It also serves to remind them of the old bonds they had for one another. It is said that Cavarephon, the only one among the former frineds to return to service as an Angel also kept his balck wings to serve as a reminder of his failure, and that he left his three best friends within the infernal realms.