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The Scholomance - The Devil's Academy
Deep within the Carpathian Mountains lies the Scholomance, the infamous school of shadow arts and black magic that is said to be administered by the Devil himself.
According to Transylvanian legend, the Scholomance was built by the Devil as a means to teach a select group of humans the ways of evil so that they could assist with his mission of spreading suffering and malice across the Earth. Admitting only ten students at a time, the Scholomance is available to only a select few. Eligible students are typically born with a birthmark signaling them as chosen and legend suggests that these markings match symbols located on landmarks and are used to find the whereabouts of the academy.
Throughout the course of instruction, the Devil teaches the ten students the languages of animals, the manipulation of the weather, the secrets of nature and a variety of dark magics. When the students have successfully completed the instruction, the Devil retains as payment one alumni who will become his servant and assist with the administration of the Scholomance.
After leaving the Scholomance, the other nine alumni join a caste of powerful wizards known as “Solomonarii”. Solomonarii have at their disposal all of the powers they learn from the Scholomance and are also granted the ability to summon a dragon-like creature known as “balaur” that they can ride as a means of transportation. Solomonarii existed in Romanian legend long before any knowledge of the Scholomance and were once considered to be a benevolent force. However, the arrival of Christianity to the area and subsequent knowledge of the Scholomance soon led the Solomonarii to be considered evil and feared amongst the population.
One of the Scholomance’s most famous alumni is said to have been Vlad III Dracula, better known as Count Dracula. In Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, the vampire hunter Van Helsing claims the Count, “learned his secrets in the Scholomance, amongst the mountains over Lake Hermanstadt, where the devil claims the tenth scholar as his due.”
Although the exact location of the Scholomance is only known to the chosen few, it is believed to be located in Romania near a small lake in the mountains just south of the Transylvanian town of Sibiu. The Scholomance itself is believed to be located either in a cave or deep underground. The nearby lake is said to be unmeasurable in depth and is used by the servants the Devil has retained to brew thunder and lightning.
Due to the extreme secrecy surrounding the Devil’s Academy of the Scholomance, very little else is known. Whether it truly exists is a mystery that will likely go unanswered - except for the chosen few.