“Welcome to the Seekers, friend. I'm afraid this is where it gets tricky. How well you do from here on out depends entirely on how far you're willing to go, and what you're willing to sacrifice. You've stared down the rabbit hole for long enough. It's time to jump.”
Cole Fisher - Gatekeeper
It takes a special sort of someone to seek knowledge for its own sake. Not necessarily for any use, but just because you want to know. And the Seekers really want to know. Beyond all else, the Seekers see a Universe without meaning and refuse to accept that it's all there is. There has to be meaning to all this. The seekers search for this meaning beyond the far flung edges of human understanding.
Whereas some groups seek breadth of knowledge, the Seekers encourage depth. If there is a meaning to the universe, it lies so far outside the realms of human understanding, that the only hope of finding answers is to seek knowledge on the most strange, esoteric, or just plain alien matters that exist. And they must be willing to do anything to achieve this. No sacrifice is too precious, if it takes a Seeker even one step closer to discovering the Truth that they seek.
The Seekers are a faction for those who seek to know that which is thought unknowable, no matter the cost. As more of a way of living than an organisation, they are fairly unstructured, but they do have various meeting places dotted around. Their main headquarters in the UK is The Old Manse, a converted Manor house near Salisbury. The Manse contains spare bedrooms, a lounge, and a general purpose library. Much of the rest is out of bounds to non-members.
The Seekers are not big on rules. Rules can only inhibit the search for understanding. They do, however, have a driving philosophy behind how they act.
The search for knowledge is a Path. It twists, turns and branches. It may lead through fire and hazards unimaginable as it winds its way into the unknown. As Seekers, you have one job: You must walk. Everything you learn is something you can use to learn more. So do it. Learn piece by piece. Step by step. It may destroy you utterly. It may do the same to others. It may do worse. So cast off anything that holds you back, and brush aside all that stands in your way. You will lose much, but may just gain everything.
Each Seeker's Path is their own, with its own perils and, in the case of the persistent and luck few, its own end. Aiding other Seekers on their path is encouraged, and may even help you on yours, but ultimately the Path you walk is yours.
Whether or not there is an end, that is what you must strive for. Always go deeper, and seek further. It will likely be a cruel, lonely and unforgiving way of life, but such is the world. And if you can find a sliver of meaning in such an existence, then for a Seeker, it will be worth it.
This is just an extract, and the rest is similarly verbose, but the long and short of it is that each Seeker must choose a direction to focus their research and investigations, and keep learning until they no longer can. This may be because they have reached the end of the Path and achieved their goal or, more likely, the Path itself has left them without the will or ability to continue.
Any risk is justified in in this endeavour, even the greatest risk for the smallest gain, and this lack of inhibition tends to attract positive attention from Demons. The summoning of Demons in the pursuit of understanding is actively encouraged. Angels less so, as they have been known to respond very negatively to Seekers in the past when summoned. Many a Seeker's path has ended early due to misjudgements regarding Angels. Still, any risk is ultimately worth it if it pays off even once.
As long as they can show that they follow their philosophy, the Seekers tend to be very accepting of members. That said, it takes a certain type of personality to flourish among the Seekers, and generally speaking tend to be one of two kinds of person.
Many join because they truly believe that the pursuit of such esoteric knowledge is the only source of meaning in the universe, and must take priority over all else. To them, The Seekers provide like-minded people with whom they can compare notes, and who are unlikely to judge them for their actions. That said, there are disputes as to whether the Path one walks will eventually lead to understanding, or if such enlightenment is gained by the very process of walking.
The others are those desperate enough that they join The Seekers as a last recourse when all else has failed. Perhaps they have lost it all, and throw themselves into the pursuit of knowledge because there’s nothing else left for them to lose. Or perhaps they have spent their whole life searching for an answer to a problem which plagues them, and after exhausting all other options, throw their lot in with the Seekers and hope beyond hope that their blind and often self-destructive searches will give them answers.
There are also members who have yet to choose a path. While remaining this way for a long time is not exactly a valid way of life for a Seeker, neither is hastily choosing a path. Changing a path once chosen is strongly discouraged unless there is no other option, as all previous work, and potential suffering , will have been for nothing. The only exception is to take up the Path of one who has either died or lost their way.
Whatever their path, or reason for joining, Seekers tend to display traits associated with obsession, and show a disregard for the consequences of their actions which is truly dangerous. They also do not respond well to those they perceive as holding them back.
Whether any given member is open about their affiliation is based on personal preference. The Seekers do have something of a reputation, largely due to the fear that they might one day do something truly world-changing in the search for understanding.
As the head of the Seekers, Cole holds the title of Gatekeeper, so called as the one who symbolically turns loose the seekers as they take the first steps on their Path. The current gatekeeper is young, having only recently taken over after the death of the previous one. Rumour has it that his Path was inherited from the previous person to hold the title.
He is the public face of the Seekers, and receives visitors at The Old Manse. He is apparently also quite the Chess enthusiast, and frequently challenges visitors to matches, as well as similar games.
The no-nonsense groundskeeper of The Old Manse. Angela is responsible for maintaining the Manse and its environs. It is unknown if she follows a Path herself, or if her interest in Gaians is solely with regards to how to best keep the land healthy.
She also contributes to the security of the Manse, and is known for meting out harsh justice on any trespassers, especially those who would cause damage to the grounds.
Ethel is the Librarian at the Old Manse. While she is frail due to her getting on in years and possesses a gentle demeanour, her knowledge of magic is nothing to be sniffed at.
Visitors to the Manse wishing to use the Library do so under her watchful gaze. Best not make too much noise.