Nightmares of the Last War
Dragonmarks are physical manifestations of the Draconic Prophecy. They have appeared on seven of Khorvaire’s common races. They are more intricate than a birthmark and more distinct than a tattoo. There are currently twelve families of true dragonmarks. In addition to being a status symbol in Khorvaire the dragonmarks provide the bearer with magical talents.
Dragonmarks typically appear in the bearer’s adolescence as they pass through puberty, however this is not exclusively the case. There are three distinct manifestations of each dragonmark that correlate in size, intricacy and power. As the dragonmark gains power (from least to greater) it will expand in size and complexity rather than forming a different mark. Often the mark will manifest first as a least mark and through study and focus the bearer increases his power and with this increase the dragonmark also increases granting additional abilities. However there are some who will manifest lesser mark or even greater mark without explaination. House members who manifest even a least dragonmark however can expect at least some change in their lifestyle as they find new and better employment oppurtunities within their house guilds as well as new social avenues to explore.
Much rarer are the so called Heirs of Siberys who possess the Siberys Mark, marks that cover much, if not all, of their body. A dragonmarked individual might labor all of their life and never manifest the Siberys Mark, while an unmarked member of a house bloodline might suddenly manifest the mark overnight. It is unpredictable and unexplained despite steady research by top minds across Khorvaire. The Siberys Mark grants the bearer extrodinary power based upon which houses mark he manifests. These Siberys dragonmarks can lead to otherwise unknown or undiscovered members of a house to suddenly rise in importance within their own ranks and those who were formerly unmarked may have a hard time adjusting to this new fame.
The dragonmarks are passed through bloodlines and when two members of different dragonmarked families reproduce it often results in aberrant dragonmarks. The aberrant marks do not manifest identically each time therefore it is possible for two individuals with completely different looking marks to produce the same magical effect using the mark. Indeed each aberrant dragonmark is completely unique to its bearer. Originally aberrant marked were seen as outcasts and outsiders. Often they were shunned by the houses and eked out a pitiful existence.