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Cognita by Chalyon.jpg
  • Cognita Amerwing
  • Cognita of Truestone
  • Cognita of Wistram
  • True Grit

Truestone Golem


200 years (at least)[1]




Wistram Academy


Zelkyr Amerwing (Creator / "Father")


Oversee Wistram and its mages


Wistram Academy

First Appearance

S03 – Wistram Days (Pt. 1)

Cognita is a Sentient-class Truestone Golem, designed by Archmage Zelkyr to oversee Wistram Academy and its mages, and guard the upper floors of the school.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Cognita is an eight-feet tall Golem whose body, consisting of grey stone, has been carved to make her look like an inhumanly perfect woman[2] with a white porcelain face.[3]

When she moves, which she does as gracefully as a dancer,[4] her robes, made of rock as well, ripple, making them appear to be nothing but cloth.[5]

Despite being composed of stone, she gives off the impression that she is a living person made of flesh. Cognita's emerald eyes can blink[3] and her face, while usually impassive, is capable of making expressions.[6]

Personality[edit | edit source]

Cognita is an intimidating figure. While she carries an impassive bearing, she is usually polite and patient with everyone in Wistram. However, most of the students and [Mages] either fear or hate her, thanks to her history and reputation of having killed more [Mages] than anyone in the school, which Cognita is not bothered by. She tends to terrify and confuse people, she is a monster to them but doesn't look and act like one.[6]

She respects the will of the academy but makes it a point to remain strictly neutral among the squabbling factions, having seen refusing to intervene in a inter-academy conflict.[7] However, she has been seen acting of her own initiative in defiance of the council, seen when she graduated Pisces and Ceria as full accredited Wistram [Mages] While helpful and subservient, her primary loyalty is to Zelkyr, with everyone and everything coming in a distinct second. Opposed to many people's belief, Cognita can feel passion, which Pisces noted when he told her of his ambitions, of what might be done with magic that had never been attempted before.[6]

To see this text, hit the "Expand" link to the right.
Eldavin noted that compared to other Sentient-class Golems he had met, Cognita seemed like a child. He discovered that this is due to loyalty spells embedded in her core. Under their influence, she was forced to love Zelkyr and follow his orders without question.[8] After their erasure, Cognita stubbornly insisted on following Zelkyr's directives; however, she also began having independent thoughts and started developed desires and wants, such as her own room and money.[9]

Background[edit | edit source]

Cognita was created by the Drake Archmage Zelkyr and is his greatest creation.

She walked Pallass’ walls and fought against the Five Families during one of their invasions of Southern Izril. She helped crush the foothold they established on Pallassian ores and killed two other Archmages in battle herself.[10]

In recent years, Cognita has recieved messages ranging from offers to buy her by the likes of Magnolia Reinhart to offers of visitation from various rulers and all the way to letters of admiration from golem lovers like Femithain.[11]

Chronology[edit | edit source]

Wistram Days[edit | edit source]

In the web version, the Wistram Days story takes place across Volume 2 and 3, though if the reader reads the ebook/audiobook version they will see a few brief mentions of Cognita before then.[12][13] Regardless, her first physical appearance in the story happens during the flashback to Ceria and Pisces' school days at Wistram Academy. She introduced herself and the rules of the academy to all of the new students as well as leading the students to their new dorm rooms and giving brief instructions on how to access them.[5] Later on, when Illphres attempted to weed out students by trapping them with an ice wall, Cognita came to rescue them by swiftly destroying the binding on the wall.[4] As Pisces and Ceria got more used to the school, they became more and more interested in Wistram's secrets. Pisces heard about the location of a secret spellbook and managed to get to it first, but the book was covered in deadly traps. He sent Cognita a note though, and she was once again able to help the two out by breaking the traps and letting Pisces have the spellbook in exchange for his original spellbook citing that the rules of Wistram decreed any student under the third year could only have one personal spellbook. It was later the next day that Pisces and Ceria also learned of Cognita's history and how she was made to guard the highest floors of Wistram by a true [Archmage], Zelkyr.[2]

It wasn't until weeks later at which point, the mage who had trapped the students previously, Illphres, took on Ceria as an apprentice and told her about her plans to challenge Cognita to get to Wistram's highest floors. Meanwhile, Cognita was teaching Pisces about animation as one of his only perceived allies in Wistram Pisces being a necromancer and therefore not as commonly trusted.[14] Pisces used this instruction to make headway towards a leveling undead. Weeks later, when the time finally came for Illphres and her group to challenge Cognita, she fought them and, along with the other guardian golems, very quickly killed the challengers. Once they were defeated and the bodies were being cleaned up, Pisces reanimated the dead mages and used them to storm Wistram in order to steal [Archmage] Nekhret's bones. He did not account for the traps on the [Archmage]'s tomb, though, which released more undead than he could handle. This death magic killed over 60 mages before Cognita and the living Archmages of Wistram managed to put a stop to it. Pisces was caught and the council of Wistram was split between exiling him and killing him, but Cognita spoke up in favor of his continued survival and exile, so his fate was decided. As her last act before Pisces and also Ceria left Wistram in exile, the golem named the two full mages of Wistram.[6]

Volume 6[edit | edit source]

Cognita was brought up again and more of her past was revealed. She fought against multiple Archmages and killed them during a war between the Drake cities and the Five Families.[10] Cognita also objected in the present day against Archmage Nailihuaile sending other mages of Wistram out to apprehend Ceria and Pisces off of the pretext that they were not full mages of Wistram.[15]

Volume 7[edit | edit source]

Besides the reveal of Earthers to Wistram, Cognita's existence was relatively similar to before after graduating Pisces and Ceria prematurely. Eventually though, [Archmage] Chandler got a hold of Pisces' leveling undead, Toren, and was able to uncover the secrets of how to make an undead level - a secret which even [Archmage] Zelkyr could not figure out. In code, he sent this secret to Cognita with the offer to set her free which made her pause every golem in Wistram. Eventually though, she rejected the offer stating that it was too soon.[11] She otherwise served her same purposes as before: protecting Wistram[16] and introducing the academy to new recruits.[17]

Volume 8[edit | edit source]

The routine of Wistram as well as Cognita was changed, however, when Eldavin came to the academy. He introduced himself fully with an older practice involving fighting the Archmages all at once leaving Cognita to protect the students rather than join in.[18] This was not the only idea that Eldavin had to shake up Wistram though. He soon after went up to Zelkyr's test to confront Cognita on how deceitful and harmful the test was. In doing so, he brought forth ideas of Zelkyr's fallibility which Cognita would not accept. The two almost came to blows before Eldavin left.[19] Eldavin made many more attempts to convince Cognita of the faults in Zelkyr's test as well as her own inadequacies due to her undying loyalty towards Zelkyr, but she would not listen.[20] He tried again by telling the world what he saw as the true tale of Peril Chandler and Zelkyr Amerwing but was interrupted by Cognita herself once she realized that what he was saying hurt the image of Zelkyr. Soon after this broadcast, Eldavin went to actually challenge the upper floors with a secondary goal of freeing Cognita of her undying loyalty that Zelkyr had planted within her. He failed his primary goal after the true power of Zelkyr's guardian golems were revealed, but after taking a grievous injury, Eldavin did manage to alter Cognita against her will.[8] Cognita disappeared for days after this to wallow in grief of what she had lost.[21]

Eventually, Cognita came to the conclusion that her loyalty binding was gone, but she still felt that she should be loyal to Zelkyr regardless. To prove this, she lashed out by using her power over Wistram to start placing statues and tapestries showing Archmage Zelkyr around the academy. Cognita continued to behave erratically while she struggled with her newfound freedom and what she truly wanted. She burned books that she saw as revisionist towards Zelkyr and looked into other forms of artificial intelligence as she saw it in the form of Cortana on Aaron's computer. Finally, she came to her conclusion that she should go see the world as Cognita increased the amount of golems guarding the upper levels significantly to prepare for her absence. Soon after, Cognita left the academy to go to Illivere among other locations.[9] Before she could get to her destination, though, Cognita's ship was hired by Barelle the Bard and Prince Zenol to head to Nerrhavia's Fallen in order to free Yvlon from wrongful imprisonment.[22]

In Cognita's absence, Trey Atwood put into place his plan to free Archmage Amerys from Wistram. Cognita acted in proxy to inform the Archmages of a golem's defeat and eventually did what she could to stop further intruders after the situation got out of hand.[23]Although Trey's initial plan was not good enough, his group had backup ideas and was eventually successful in freeing Amerys causing Cognita to mark Trey[7]

Powers and Abilities[edit | edit source]

As a Sentient-class Golem, Cognita has a personality and emotions. She possesses a vast array of abilities, including enhanced strength that enables her to punch through enchanted ice and a perfect memory.

Being made of Truestone, she can become any material, including Adamantine and Truegold, though her true power lies in changing into magical rocks that can grant her abilities such as speed equivalent to [Greater Haste] or shooting lasers.[9] Her battle prowess is such that even [Archmages] have fallen to her and her list of confirmed kills is in the thousands.

She has control over Zelkyr's Golems in Wistram and can see, hear and collect information through them. Additionally, she can transfer her consciousness to any of the Golems, even when hundreds of miles away.[7]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Cognita has a deep, inflectionless voice.[6]
  • Magnolia once made an offer to buy Cognita, though she refused.[24]
  • During Pisces' stay in Wistram, Cognita passed on to him the theorems entailing the method of animating Golems and giving them sentience, albeit incomplete ones.[13]
  • If she discovers that some mages decided to challenge her to reach the upper floors, Cognita is surprisingly helpful, going so far as to allow them to set a date for the fight and even postpone it in case they would prefer to wait.[6] However, this is most likely due to her confidence that she is able to defeat them, and has displayed hostility to Eldavin, one of the few capable of defeating her.[19]
  • It has been strongly implied that Cognita actually wants people to succeed in beating her and reach the upper floors. She doesn't want to kill the mages and feels sad whenever she has to do it.[6]
  • She is bound to be truthful to the Wistram mages.[2]

References[edit | edit source]