The Secret World: Season 2
The Council of Venice
The Council of Venice is a puppet that has taken on a life of its own, a Frankenstein’s monster of the other conspiracies that demands its own place, a mask that has become a face. Formed by ancient treaty between most of the major conspiracies of the world, including the powers of today, Templar, Illuminati, Dragon, and Phoenician, the Council is essentially a U.N. for the Secret World, an impartial body composed of independent sorcerers and borrowed members from the other cabals, committed to overseeing diplomacy and interactions between the conspiracies in a peaceful manner. In reality it has long been a political tool, much like the real League of Nations and U.N. have been. Over time, however, the Council has transformed into a legitimate political power, and one that is committed to fulfilling the mission it was ostentatiously founded for.
The Council operates out of the Sunken Library of Venice, an underwater structure that was once part of the city that broke off and sank into the sea. Magic continues to make it habitable, and quite accessible from the surface. The Sunken Library is, in fact, proof of concept for the theories about New Carthage being somewhere at the sea’s bottom, and it is known that Phoenician magic had a hand in its construction.
The Council is made up of representatives from the various factions who, as part of their diplomatic function, reside at the Sunken Library and numerous individuals sworn to impartiality. In the past this was a hollow masquerade, but over time, several independent magicians truly committed to the Council’s mission have filtered in, and weary agents from conspiracies around the world have become interested in the idea of a powerful, neutral body that could control the excesses of shadow warfare. Members sent to fulfill obligations as contributions to peacekeeping forces often return with a new, secret allegiance to the council, even after they don their conspiracy colors and return to “normal” cabal life. The Council has thus infiltrated all the other conspiracies, at least partially, with a small army of double agents.
The Council hopes to gain enough power where it can control and monitor the other conspiracies. It builds goodwill by responding to paranormal incidents and catastrophes with aid and hunts down dangerous rogue sorcerers and phenomena, gaining knowledge and influence all the while. The Council is young, but its mission is old; to quell the wrathful and avaricious and bring peace to the world. It intends to do so through soft and hard power, through social and political influence as well as dozens of hardened mystic commandos. Slowly it amasses power, teetering on the brink of temptation, awaiting the day when it will cut its strings and become the guardians of the earth.
The Council appeals to the most idealistic members of the Secret World, those burnout by the darkness in both man and monster, but hopeful for a better future. There are surely some attracted by avarice to its mission of seizing power and setting the pace of supernatural life, but by and large a great deal of the membership is genuine. They can offer resources and assistance only discreetly, and often convert members of existing cabals rather than training their own. What they can give is a purpose more pure and uncomplicated then the Templar’s Crusade, more principled than the Phoenician or Illuminati creeds, and less mysterious than the Dragon’s enigma. The Council appeals to those that want to bring political reform and moral transformation to the Secret World; a new way free from the sins of the present or the past. In doing so, however, they do risk becoming the very thing they despise. Only time will tell if they are incorruptible, or if they too will become yet another typical cabal.