September 2000 - Asheron's Call: Darktide
", in the sands of a distant desert on the night where few stars shown their true light." - CotP Guild Charter
Throne, then known as "Ceraphim", met Oonagh, then "Audria" in the Gharundim desert town of Al Arqas where she swore fealty to the idealistic young warrior....and subsequently, the idea behind what would some day become the Covenant of the Phoenix was born.
Al Arqas was mostly known for a decent out of the way place to start a new character....and that was about it. It was a fairly nice place to have a life-stone bind and a semi-nearby archmage to buy components. The nearby mosswart caves provided some low level hunting, but not much else. We did not have much in terms of competition, but it's worth saying that we were the dominant monarchy in Al Arqas for the entirety of the time I played (Sep/2000 - Aug/2003).
It was an age of stability on the most brutal free for all PvP servers of it's time. Darktide politics was limited to a single war front, Anti-PK's (Antis) vs PK's...and the anti-PK's were winning, hence, the stability. The patch that brought Ayan Bakur to the world of Dereth was not long in the past and the glorious city was owned by Anti-PK's, a conglomerate of 20-30 Monarchies who enjoyed the benefit of the best exp (Olthoi/Tusker) dungeons nearby.
While the tag "Zandar Blackrock" wasn't known as a major monarchy at the time, through Ceraphim, it was involved in many of the server's great wars and turning points. We didn't get in on the early wars between TM, SiN, BR and CED up in Arwic and Eastham, but we did make it in on the second Ayan Bakur wars and pretty much everything else server-wide thereafter. Those were tough days when one pk clan, one neutral clan and one supposedly anti clan (wilc) joined forces to create a single PK clan (GEN) that would clean the carebears out of Ayan Bakur. They cleaned out just enough of us Antis to allow KoC (Blood), previously limited to Kara and the Mountain Retreat, to come in, clean up what was left of a brutal war and take Ayan Bakur for themselves. KoC would hold Ayan Bakur for the remainder of the city's relevancy (until Tusker Island), despite several attempts to regain the territory.
After our defeat, most antis spread out, some to Teth (under the protection of Alberion Mindeater), but most went to Kryst, a new island chain in the SE corner of Dereth.
To combat the growing rarity of actual Anti-PK monarchies, we joined the Darktide Rhino Party to better combat the growing forces of evil (RPK's). It was around this time that Polar Kraken (Jassid), Lyandrill (Ayn) and Kaobang joined in on the fun.
During our heyday we often defeated challenges to our superiority in Al Arqas, this was never more evident in our war against Choo Choo and Addiction. After 3 or 4 minor skirmishes to go along with the two major vitae filled battles, we put an end to their ambitions...and their guild, which fell apart a few weeks later.
We eventually left the Rhino Party due to lack of actual action (plenty of meetings though) and began searching out trouble on our own. This eventually led to being a founding member of the foremost turning point in Anti history, at least since the first Ayan Bakur War was won. Antiville was the idea that eventually led antis back to dominance after basically being spread out and disorganized for the better part of two years. It brought several of the largest remaining anti guilds together as neighbors and allowed for a combined effort no matter where we took the fight and who we took it too. So it came to pass, 2 years after they took Ayan Bakur from us, we took Tusker Island from KoC.
While our time in Asheron's Call would span several more years as House of Blackrock and eventually Powers Inc, my time ended in August of 2003 as I began playing elsewhere, in a galaxy, far far away...
Source: CotP History: Part 1