The Luminai are a race of unique Eldan-human hybrids that occupy the highest positions of nobility within the Dominion, set apart from the other races of the empire by the Eldan blood in their veins. Every Luminai is descended directly from Dominus the Half-Blood - first emperor of the Dominion - and are considered by many to be the living proof of the Eldan legacy granted to the empire almost two thousand years ago.
Luminai resemble tall, powerful, idealized versions of their human cousins, but with facial features that clearly delineate their alien ancestry. Often dressed in ornate robes and wearing ornamental masks, they are a formidable and intimidating presence when seen in public.
- A GOLDEN AGE
The first and most famous of all the Luminai was Dominus the Half-Blood, who arrived on planet Cassus in the year 1 AE. Dominus was created by the Eldan on planet Nexus, using the genetic information of the famed Cassian Sword-Maiden Tresayne Toria. After his long-awaited arrival, Dominus was welcomed with open arms by his new people and crowned the first emperor of the newly established Dominion. Blessed with the strength and courageousness of his legendary mother, the Half-Blood was beloved by the people of Cassus, and his reign is considered the Dominion's golden age.
Like most Luminai, Dominus was extremely long lived and ruled the Dominion for almost three centuries. He died peacefully in the year 292 AE, leaving the empire to his firstborn son Azrion. The other children of Dominus - now known as the Scions - founded the Great Houses of the Luminai and helped their brother lead the Dominion into the future.
- THE LEGACY PRESERVED
In 1376 AE, in the wake of the Eldan's purported ascension to godhood, the reigning emperor Jarec of House Azrion delivered the Vigilant Declaration. This document, which officially deified the Eldan, united the empire under one faith. It also included the Ancestral Decree, a set of laws meant to preserve the Luminai's sacred Eldan blood. This decree also established a set of rules for Luminai marriages and reproduction within and between the Great Houses, all of which are still followed to this day.
The controversial Vigilant Declaration also led to an unexpected class and racial divide between highborn and lowborn Cassians. Highborn Cassians were those who could trace their lineage to the one or more of the Great Luminai houses, and therefore had trace amounts of Eldan blood in their veins. Lowborn Cassians could not. This divide among Cassian humans still exists today, and continues to serve as the foundation for many Dominion social and political systems.
- WEALTH AND POWER
Despite their nearly unchecked power within the Dominion, the Luminai are a relatively small population of individuals who are rarely seen beyond the confines of their family houses. Considered by many to be deities themselves, and surrounded by unimaginable wealth and power, the Luminai exist in a realm undreamed of by most Dominion citizens.
Like any exclusive and isolated group that maintains frequent contact, they have developed their own ways of communicating and interacting with each other. These include formalities and rituals observed in public and in private, phrases and gestures known only to them, and of course the ongoing struggle to gain wealth, power and influence. As would be expected, the struggles between the Great Houses can often be deadly, often involving deception, machinations and murder.
- DOMINUS REBORN
The current emperor, Myrcalus the Vindicator, took the throne by force after the dark reign of Vorios the False nearly brought the empire to ruin. To many in the Dominion, he is known as "Dominus Reborn". His physical resemblance to Dominus is undeniable, and many also believe he possesses the same strength, courage and indomitable spirit as his illustrious ancestor. In the wake of the discovery of Nexus, Emperor Myrcalus has sworn that he will bring the homeworld of his ancestors under Dominion control, and lead the empire into a radiant new age of galactic supremacy.
Great Luminai Houses
The Luminai houses are formed by Dominus the Half-Blood's children, or the Scions, who became the progenitors of the Luminai nobility and worshipped by Vigilant Church. The Scions' initial houses (Azrion, Korol, Tristan, Galen, Bronos, Evindra, and Chaul) were numbered at seven until House Chaul (now considered as "The Ghost House") was dissolved after its involvement in assasination of Emperor Jarec the Vigilant by his successor Vorias the False.
- Dominus the Half-Blood (1 AE-292 AE): The First Emperor of the Dominion and father of the Great Luminai Houses. He was also the husband of a Cassian named Olyssia Zin, the ancestor of Artemis Zin, who died after giving birth to the seventh child Chaul.
- Azrion the Conqueror (292 AE-467 AE): The Second Emperor of the Dominion and eldest son of Dominus. The most famous of Azrion's deeds was his victory in a single combat against High Clanlord Zhur with his sword Indominar in 344 AE, which the Draken people pledge their loyalty to the victorious Emperor as part of their former leader's wager to serve him if he was defeated.
- Callus the Cunning (467 AE-772 AE): The Third Emperor of the Dominion.
- Seraphel the Builder (772 AE-821 AE): The Fourth Emperor of the Dominion.
- Gaius the Old (821 AE-1109 AE): The Fifth Emperor of the Dominion.
- Tyrani the Mad (1109 AE-1322AE): The Sixth Emperor of the Dominion. His reign was marked by his madness that resulted from a major defeat in War of the Gnox, which a group of Granok led by Durek stole the Dominion's technology and drove back the Legions in 1211 AE.
- Jarec the Vigilant (1322 AE-1433 AE): The Seventh Emperor of the Dominion and the son of Tyrani the Mad. During his reign, the Dominion was in turmoil after the distarous rule of Tyrani the Mad. The disappearance of Eldan in 1376 AE caused the creation of both Vigilant Church and Ancestral Decree, which both of them caused social unrest among Cassian commoners due to the destruction of Chronicler Houses from the former and the widening of class disparity based on Eldan blood from the latter. Two years later, Admiral Serrick Brightland launched a rebellion against the Dominion before his rebels were forced to retreat beyond the Fringe and wandered there on their aging space ships for generations until the discovery of Nexus. Jarec died without an heir and suceeded by Vorios of House Chaul in 1433 AE.
- Vorios the False (1433 AE- 1615 AE): The Eight Emperor of the Dominion and a minor noble of House Chaul. His reign was known for bringing the Dominion to its dark age. Economy began to stagnate and social unrest among all societies in the Dominion. He was later overthrown by Myrcalus and House Chaul was dissolved as a punishment for his role in assassination of previous Emperor Jarec.
- Myrcalus the Vindicator (1615 AE- Present): The Ninth and current Emperor of the Dominion. He was a cousin of Jarec the Vigilant and present at his funeral procession. When Myrcalus of House Azrion investigated the death of Jarec with the aid of ICI , the assassin revealed that Vorios ordered the previous emperor to be killed with a slow poison in his bed. He would take the sword Indominar, wielded by Azrion the Conquerer, and marched to the palace on Cassus. He would rally the Draken bodyguards to avenge Jarec and overran Vorios bodyguards before Vorios was executed for his misdeeds. He would later become known as "The Vindicator" due to his action to redeem the Dominion from its dark ages.
- Based on Councilor Vaelen's corpse during the quest of Firewalker SOS in Deradune, the Luminais' blood have blue and purple coloring.
- Other than their status as rulers of Dominion planets, the known noble ranks of Luminai are Councilors and Governor, which the latter governed over large territories with smaller ones were usually administered by Cassian Prefects.