Sentinels of the Umbra
The Sentinels of the Umbra believe themselves to be wardens of an ancient and mysterious entity that dwells beyond the fabric of Creation. It is a primeval force that seeks to enter the physical realm and bring forth its own idea of existence – that of pure domination, or maybe destruction, or, perhaps, simply to ingest the physical realm as a mid-morning snack. (Stories vary on this point, depending on the teller and the mood of the audience.)
The Sect possesses no physical object or artifact that represents the entity. The family guards no gem, stone, or weapon that houses its presence. Rather, the entity dwells in the physical being of each member of the Sect. Furthermore, it is the family bloodline that prevents the primeval force from taking root within reality. Each family member is bonded to the entity upon creation within their mother’s womb, and forever hold communion with it.
How their family came to be the Sentinels of the Umbra is told through multitudes of folklore and legends, most of which is not very consistent. No one in the family truly knows the story of how he or she were formed as each retelling is always a bit different. But there are always two elements to all the different stories that stay the same:
Daciana was the first of the Okami Clan and mother to all in the family. She was the one to open the doorway between this reality and where the ancient entity exists. She was the first to establish the bond, learn of its great and horrific secrets, and discovered its single weakness.
It is through the family’s use of performing arts, such as storytelling, poetry, singing, acting, and dancing, that the primeval force is held at bay. For unknown reasons, whenever any of the family performs, the entity is satiated and passive.
Some family members have a stronger bond than others. Some members can actually communicate with the entity’s presence and harness its secrets to create great magical effects, similar to the legends told about Daciana. Usually, there are only one or two individuals within the family that possess this power in any given generation. This individual tends to be the family leader in that generation.