Siegfrund the Nephilim is an aberration, a fusion of opposites: part Demonspawn, part Lightbringer. Demonspawn and Lightbringers as seen in Teleria are mortal bodies inhabited by extraplanar beings, who are able to bypass the ancient banishment spell that excludes the gods and the Firstborn from the mortal world. But, if such second-order manifestations of Light and Darkness can exist upon Teleria, could they be merged in a second-order union? This radical concept was the goal of a certain cabal of sorcerers and theologians who were active during the intellectual and social upheavals of the Great Schism of the Lumayan Church and the fall of Narbuk. They were called Nephilists for their belief in what they called a Nephilim, a fusion of Demonspawn and Lightbringer, which they conjectured would result in a superior being of incalculable power and sagacity. Even other revolutionary thinkers called their ideas mad, but the Nephilists were capable and determined, and funded by wealthy obsessives. After much preparation, they achieved something remarkable in its own right: they stalked and bound a powerful Demonspawn whose name has been lost to time. With rare magics and ancient relics, the Nephilists numbed the connection between the Demonspawn’s body and soul, and bound him in runed, silver chains.
The Nephilists built a tower to contain their prize and reinforce its magical bindings, on a secluded hummock in the Dusk Hills from where dread Ireth was just visible on the horizon. After more preparations and inscrutable rituals, the Nephilists began the second phase of their magnum opus, the attempted infusion of a Lightbringer soul. How they would shackle a Lightbringer and somehow force them to cohabit the Demonspawn’s form was the greatest and most closely guarded secret of their sect. It, along with each and every participant in the final ritual, perished at the moment of Siegfrund’s fusion. The very concept of creating a Nephilim was purged violently from Telerian history by its own realization.
The middlemen who supplied the Nephilists with provisions eventually came with a shipment and found the tower obliterated, with only the ground floor still partially standing. These porters fled in terror, and that, as far as the world could reckon, was the end of the Nephilists and their mad scheme. But for Siegfrund the Nephilim the tower’s destruction was only the explosive beginning of a secret, tortured existence.
Siegfrund emerged from the rubble of his creation as a cosmological paradox, a spiritual abomination – two souls, two bodies, overlapping and coexisting in the selfsame pocket of time and space. Neither Siegfrund the Demonspawn nor the unknown Lightbringer were coherent personalities remaining within the Nephilim, but their powerful Light and Darkness energy remained raging within him along with their scrambled souls, constantly superseding and overriding each other in a chaotic equilibrium. Siegfrund vanished from the ruined tower into the trackless Krokhan Desert. There he found the mouth of an ancient underground tomb, and retreated within, not from the baking sun but from a reflexive need to isolate and hide from the world. Siegfrund knew that he should not exist, and both wished to undo himself but also feared what might happen if he did. His young, fractured, incoherent mind identified with what he found in the crypt: a grave marked with the name ‘Siegfrund’, in which bones rested within antique armor, a broken sword and shield laying upon the breast. Siegfrund removed the bones, donned the armor, and took up the same pose, becoming dead to the world yet still alive. For centuries he lay in the tomb undisturbed, contemplating his own existence, his form intermingling with the plate he wore, so that it became him.
In this long isolation, Siegfrund was able to better integrate his Demonspawn and Lightbringer halves, though only in the realm of his thoughts – he dared not awaken himself, but only prepared for it in deathly meditation. He would keep his Lightbringer nature largely in control, for control was the nature of Light, nor did he dare risk allowing the creative and freedom-loving Darkness within him to become too dominant. But he also knew he should not extinguish either, for the gestalt was the essence of Teleria, and he was of Teleria.
Siegfrund was finally discovered by Irethi ghoul-thralls, and soon afterward a host of fascinated necromancers arrived. They wished to perform grisly experiments upon Siegfrund, but unbeknownst to them he was listening to their discussion and decided that the time had come to test his control of his hybrid self. When he rose from the sepulcher, the necromancers were terrified, for they held some inkling as to Siegfrund’s true nature and the power he could wield.
They and their ghouls assaulted him forthwith, and he fought back. To his surprise, his Demonspawn half was dormant as he cleft ghouls in twain with his sword and splattered necromancer brains against the dusty walls with a stroke from his huge shield. The righteous fury of the Lightbringer within shone bright – perhaps it had been some particularly ferocious crusader.
The last sorcerer begged for mercy, but a moment too late, as Siegfrund swung his heavy blade into the necromancer’s torso. Hearing the plea, Siegfrund was struck by mournfulness and confusion. The will to learn and grow and change is the essence of Darkness, and Siegfrund saw the death of the apparently repentant necromancer as an affront to this desire. His stern, emotionless Lightbringer half retreated, and Siegfrund changed and warped, sprouting great wings and glowing with the magmatic fire of Darkness that represents primordial regeneration. Even his garb shifted to reflect this altered balance, and his sword was spontaneously reforged. Doing what came naturally to him, like an amnesiac recovering lost memories, Siegfrund knit the sorcerer’s flesh back together and anchored the sorcerer’s swiftly departing soul to it. Restored to life, the necromancer tutored Siegfrund on Teleria and its history. At last, Siegfrund began to gain a dim but growing awareness of what he truly was, and to wonder for the first time if he could have a place in the world.