The Seekers of the Aetherium are a pseudomilitary alliance of factions and races dedicated to exploring and studying the mysteries of the cosmos. They seek answers to such esoteric questions as the origin of the Arcane or why the Crystal Spheres are spherical. But as eager as they are to explore and learn, they are careful to respect the independence and liberty of the creatures and worlds they encounter.
The symbol of the Seekers is an eye superimposed on a sword pointed downward.
The Seekers of the Aetherium (often abbreviated as simply the Aetherium or the Seekers) trace their origins to an alliance between a nation of interplanetary humans that had just begun to strike out into the Flow and a diplomatic envoy of spacefaring vedalken. The humans shared evidence that they had discovered within their Crystal Sphere pointing to an ancient and massive library known as Compendium. In exchange, the vedalken shared their superior spelljamming techniques and knowledge of their charted region of the Material Plane. A beneficial partnership was born.
Since then, several other factions have been incorporated into the Aetherium's alliance, and more join every year. Although humans and vedalken still comprise the majority of Aetherium members, the alliance welcomes any that wish to petition for membership, and its ranks are filled by a diverse number of species.
The goals and purpose of the Aetherium are expressed in three Injunctions - laws that their members hold above all others.
Chief among the mysteries that the Aetherium is investigating are legends of a world known as Compendium. According to the legends, Compendium is an ancient library of massive proportions - a storehouse of knowledge comprising an entire planet. Its location, however, has remained a mystery, and many within the Aetherium doubt that it truly exists.
The Seekers of the Aetherium are organized according to a strict military hierarchy.
The Seekers are organized into three primary divisions.
The Beholder Hives are no friends of the Aetherium, but the Aetherium does not go out of their way to provoke them, as the beholders seem to be almost entirely consumed with their own self-destructive xenophobia. To the extent of their ability, the Aetherium has carefully charted beholder space and has advised all Aetherium fleets to keep a wide berth.
The Aetherium maintains peaceful relations with the Elven Imperial Navy. The Navy has so far shown no interest in officially joining the Aetherium, although there are many elves among the Aetherium ranks.
The absolute theocracy of the Heralds of the Glorious Dawn is antithetical to the values of the Aetherium; in particular, their tendency to target less-advanced worlds for invasion stands in stark contrast to the Aetherium's First Injunction. So far, however, the Heralds conquistadors have kept their crusades localized to a remote area of space, and with their actual strength being unknown, the Aetherium hasn't made any direct moves against them.
The Illithid Mercantile Combine and the Aetherium have a mutual non-aggression pact. The Seekers do not support the mind flayers and avoid trading or dealing with them.
The Aetherium and the Neogi are at war. The Neogi have committed countless atrocities against Aetherium members, and the Aetherium recognize that a diplomatic resolution with such a warlike race is simply not possible. That being said, the Aetherium only engage the Neogi in order to prevent imminent attacks and intrusions into Aetherium space. The Aetherium does not believe in genocide and is not acting against the Neogi preemptively.
The Aetherium and Xenos are at war. The Xenos' goal of eradicating all non-human civilizations stands in stark contrast to the Aetherium's mission of non-interference, peace, and preservation of knowledge.
The Zjalans petitioned the Aetherium for membership and were considered provisionary members until recently. However, the Zjalans violated the First Injunction recently and were expelled.