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The Purity Wars were a series of events that took place in the kingdom of Nortander shortly after the Mage Wars had ended. Led by Rondar Lacaine, the leader of the Purity of Light religion, the religious fanatics abused the hatred and distrust towards magically gifted and brandished them as defilers that ought to be hunted down and killed.

The Mage Wars' aftermath

Because of the many casualties caused by the conflict once started by Isamo Tahar and his mages, the common people bore a grudge towards the magically gifted. Rondar Lacaine, who had been a simple follower of Aonir during the wars, had helped wherever he could but had a change of mind later on. In a vision he was supposedly told by the All-Father that his return to Eo was imminent. But the so-called defilers had tainted his divine magic for their own good and unless they were taken care of, he would not return.

Lacaine founded the Purity of Light whose sermons were strictly anti-magic. The religion was extremely successful both among the common folk but also within the ruling caste of Nortander such as Amaria Leonidar, who all had lost family to magic spells. Mages had a rough time because of both the Purity of Light and their followers such as the house of Leonidar, the Bane and even the royal army of Nortander.

A lot has happened. More and more people have started to see the light and it is not just townsfolk and farmers anymore, but also soldiers. They all wish to fight for Aonir's return, and we guide them. [...] This country is torn, it is only natural for people to take up arms and defend their own rights.
Bertrand Carpel about the Purity and its militarization

Lacaine and the Archfire

After Lacaine had first helped Corporal Tahar in finding the origin of the Bloodburn, the shaper woman Andra, in the Eye he then betrayed him. The Harbinger captured both Andra's mind and magic inside an amulet and then abused her powerful archfire magic for his own purpose.

While Corporal Tahar was unconscious the Purity of Light was able to overthrow the royal army, took control over many important positions such as the Iskander Wilds, the Windwall Foothills, the Eye and even the capital Greyfell with Lacaine's new power. His followers were still hunting mages and their supporters alike, but in secret Lacaine had already been preparing the ritual of the Opening of the Gates to ensure Aonir's return to Eo.

Confrontation with Corporal Tahar

A few weeks after the incident at the Eye, Corporal Tahar awoke from his coma and when he learned about Lacaine's doings, he decided, that he had to be stopped for Eo's sake. After having fought back the Purity, the Deathmen and the Bane alike during the battle for Mulandir, he came up with a plan of stopping the Harbinger's influence.

Lacaine did not only want me to stop the Bloodburn, he needed me to lead me to my mother so he could use her as a source of the archfire.

He dispelled the rune magic that was used to enthrall Lady Myrah Utran and was able to convince her to join his side. He even managed to assemble the other two houses of Wulfgar and Hallit and defeated the house of Leonidar by killing Amaria Leonidar.

Final Fight at Greykeep

After the Golden Road had been freed from the Purity and the Bane, Corporal Tahar and his armies stood in front of Greyfell. They besieged the city and obliterated the Iron Ones and what was left of Rondar Lacaine's forces. The Bane's and the Deathmen's leader Katras and Liliath were also defeated as well as the powerful Masked Priest.

When Corporal Tahar and his companions confronted the harbinger in the Halls of Justice, the latter was defeated but still managed to do the Opening of the Gates with his last breath. However he had been fooled as the Spectral Horror was only mimicking Aonir in Lacaine's vision to find a way back to Eo.

The demon killed Angar Arandir in one swoop but could be defeated in a tough fight. Sadly Andra had to sacrifice herself to sever the connection of the being to the archfire magic to ensure her offspring's victory.

Queen Ayelith and the Circle's founding

After Queen Ayelith had woken up from her comateous state, she ordered the royal army to hunt down the remaining Lightbringers and devotees of the Purity of Light in the Nortander territory. Most of the Purity forces had already disbanded and escaped justice that way but some still believed in the sermons of the Purity and still tried to fight the royal army and the Wolf Guard. To allow the mages to create an organization on their own, Queen Ayelith founded the Circle and Yria, Isgrimm, Corporal Tahar and his other companions became its first members.