Children of the Glyphs houses
(Background information for the Children of the Glyphs campaign)
The Great Houses of Chaos are akin to countries or kingdoms. They are not monocultures, but they tend to be shaped by their Glyphs (particularly the Birthright Glyphs). They tend to use bloodlines or merit to determine status within their ranks (or, in some cases, both.) Heads of houses lose any given or family names they may have had before, being known only by their House name.
Despite being one of the oldest Houses, Zuhayr was one of the first to break away from the feudal mode and become a meritocracy. When a Birthright Glyph becomes available, potential candidates undergo trials to determine who is worthy of the honour. (These are not necessarily physical trials. The qualities being selected for will be determined by the nature of the Glyph. Also, the trials are intended to be to the death, as the house does not believe in wasting its people in such a way.)
No one has seen the House head in centuries, although he sends a marked representative to speak for him at the council meetings. The effects of Zuhayr Glyphs tend to be very organic, and the head's Birthright Glyph allows him to infect organic matter, with a variety of results.
Lineage is extremely important in this House; now, more than ever. A number of its higher ranking members were recently lost in strange circumstances, and now they are frantically trying to maintain their holdings while investigating what happened.
A bloodline House whose extraordinarily charismatic leader is a candidate for Empress, with a voice that can sing like an angel or shatter steel. She has managed to gain the support of Houses Akilah and, recently, Daifah, although the latter counts for little at the moment.
The fire dancers of House Safiyya are revered throughout the Empire. That they are a cover for some of the most feared assassins of the Courts is surely only a rumour.
The trappings of sorcery surround the Glyphs of Fakhri, much as whispers surround the House itself. It is said that Fakhri himself does not forget a single thing, much as he might wish to.
Technology is this House's main stock-in-trade, and this is reflected in the Glyphs they use. Their metal-skinned servitors are not an uncommon sight in the Empire.
Akilah is one of the oldest Houses -- some say it might even be the oldest. Certainly, Akilah himself has a truly prodigious skill at harnessing worlds into Glyphs. He rarely speaks in Council, doing so only when he has something truly important to say. The last such occasion was when he refused to be considered as a candidate for Emperor.
The Houses Hilel and Wathiq are technically allied, although it is clear that their respective heads are not especially fond of each other. They are united in their opposition to Madari's bid for the throne.
Wathiq is one of the newer Houses, which makes its alliance with conservative, traditional Hilel all the more strange. Compared to the older ones, they have very few Birthright worlds. However, they have dedicated a not inconsiderable portion of their time and resources to taming some of the Chaos worlds on the rim. This is starting to net them some considerable returns. The other Houses watch with interest.
Not a House in the traditional sense, Jaida is the Church of the Serpent of Chaos, and the Serpent is its seal and sigil. Anyone can join, who wishes to dedicate their life to serving the faith of the Empire. The Glyph of the High Priest has but a single function, but it is exceedingly potent. It gives communion with the holy Serpent Herself.