Academie Des Sciences

France's Académie des Sciences is always at the forefront of scientific research and practice. The Académie des Sciences was created with the funds from King Louis the XIV of France in 1666. Though it was Louis XIV who put the institute into being it, it would not exist if not for the passion of Jean-Baptiste Colbert; it was Colbert who convinced Louis XIV to found the institution. Colbert was referred to as "Le Nord", which is French for "The North." Colbert was given this title because he was known to be cold and unwaveringly emotionless, a trait which helped him greatly in his dealings. It is rumored that Colbert was actually a studier of necromancy. Through his works, Colbert contributed a great deal to the well-being of France, and this was enough to keep most people from asking too many questions. However, there were some who believed Colbert to be a very powerful necromancer, and possibly even the holder of the original Kitab al-Azif. Colbert handpicked the scholars who were to lead the Académie des Sciences, and for this reason it has operated under the shadow of necromantic rumors.

For thirty years the institute had relatively informal operations. It was not founded by any religion, nor did it have any involvement with ecclesiastical studies, which was atypical of academic institutions of the time. The Académie des Sciences was truly apolitical, and avoided even the discussion of religion. It brought in the students it wished to bring in and taught them what it wished to teach them. It wasn't until 1699 that King Louis XIV imposed any type of rules upon the academy. Even then, the rules were lax, and the academy was still run by the same scholars Colbert had appointed.

The Académie des Sciences is a strong school that is no stranger to the teachings of aetheric magic. The most powerful wizards in France reside in these halls, both professors and students alike. By now, Colbert and all but one of his appointed scholars are long dead. This final living Colbert-appointed scholar is Dominique Alphonse.

There are many dark rumors surrounding the Académie des Sciences. The Académie des Sciences is located in the Louvre, and it is said by some that deep below the old museum lies a secondary Académie des Sciences. Supposedly, this academy has a much more specific focus; necromancy. Rumormongers cite Le Nord's possible involvement with the practice of Necromancy.

The Life and Death of "Le Nord"

Le Nord did incredible things for the French economy in the 17th century. He barely slept. He worked feverishly to help France. He pioneered many economic reforms, manufacturing processes, and trade laws and practices in France. Some believe he pursued necromancy with the same unending vigilance. Le Nord was discreet when it came to religion. He openly practiced none himself. He worked with Protestants as he realized they were a large part of the French economy. However, he often urged (and perhaps coerced) Louis XIV to lessen strength and number of clergy in France. He helped Louis XIV fight to gain royal rights over some clerical positions, and he also supported (and perhaps secretly created) a proposal to seize a great deal of religious assets. At the age of 68 Le Nord began experiencing incredible pain inside his belly. For a year, Le Nord suffered from this pain, being bedridden and forced to eat only moist bread. In some Asian cultures it is thought that a person's soul is in their belly; for this reason, and rumors of Le Nord's involvement with necromancy, some believe that his soul dissolved inside of him while he was still alive. Upon his autopsy (performed at the Académie des Sciences), it was concluded that Colbert had died of immense kidney stones; some believe this to be a cover story. Though the tomb of Jean-Baptiste Colbert is in St. Eustache church, Paris, it is rumored that deep underneath the Louvre Le Nord's body is still animated as a some kind of foul undead, watched over by the ancient Dominique Alphonse, and will remain forever so, as it has no soul and can never find peace. It is thought that the subterranean catacombs of Paris center below the Louvre, among the lowest, darkest levels of the Académie des Sciences.

Rumors

Among other necromantic tales involving the Académie des Sciences is the fact that the academy was created in 1666, undoubtedly an evil number and the year of the Great Fire of London. The school is also suspect because of how few ties it has to religious or governmental authority. Despite being fully funded by King Louis XIV, the monarch has no say in the rules of the institution, nor does the institution answer to him. Some believe Le Nord forced Louis XIV to create the Académie des Sciences so he could practice and teach others his dark magics. This is furthered by the fact that Louis XIV didn't even dare to impose any kind of rule upon the school until sixteen years after Colbert's death.

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