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VonEbs

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  1. I will take some time in the next few days to revise it to make all the corrections above. Thank you for all for reading! Edit: Feel free to add me on discord if you have corrections you would like to discuss or you just want to reminisce about old time. My discord is: ebsy#2304
  2. Thank you Dreek, I am glad that you enjoyed it. And yes, your trial set the stage for a long tradition of... rather selective application of the Articles of Urguan by various Grand Kings of Urguan.
  3. My hope is that, time permitting, I will be able roll out the next three volumes, covering Athera, Vailor and Axios, in the next few months. Feel free to post in this thread, and I am not going to make demands that all posts be strictly in rp.
  4. The Third Sky Act I: Empire Ascendant (1420-1431) The Descendants’ stay in Anthos would prove to be a time of fundamental transformations in their societies. Empires would rise and fall, political orders thought unassailable would crumble beneath their own weight, and great men and women would falter amidst rising expectations. The Aegis generation would begin to truly fade from the scene, and by the time of the the flight to the Portal of Eternity, few remained that recalled that first flight to that first portal, a hundred years before. In their place would rise a new crop of rulers stepping forth to prove their mettle and rise the challenges presented by the vagaries of history. Arrival The Descendants’ flotilla arrived in Anthos in 1420, disembarking in a chaotic whirlwind. The various races quickly departed the landing point at the new Wilven Monks Sanctuary in the Cloudlands for their newly established domains. The orcs and dwarves settled in the south, with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan occupying the mountain depths of Kal’Azgoth and the orcs temporarily establishing themselves on the mesas of San’Orka. The humans and elves ventured north, with the elves settling into the dense forests around their capital of Leumaelin while the humans spread themselves out among several settlements, centered on the Imperial Capital, Abresi. There were additional centers of human settlement in Hanseti under the careful watch of Mirtok DeNurem at the extreme northern edge of Anthos as well as the royal city of Kingston, prime city of Salvus, the domain of House Hightower. The halflings established their humble village of Lenfarthing in a serene valley near the Malinorian border, and the Kharajyr, having hitched a ride from their native Asulon with the high elves, settled on a tropical island off the coast of Anthos. The Urguan-War Uzg War Continues The long running conflict between the orcs and the dwarves continued with a series of the Urguanite victories. First among these was a raid on San’Orka, where the kidnapped Empress of the Holy Oren Empire was rescued by a mixed dwarf-human force. The orcs were routed once again at a ramshackle fortress near the crossroads adjacent to the mighty dwarven fortress of Storm’s Crossing. After this battle, both sides sued for peace, but agreeable terms proved impossible, and the war continued, with the hostilities developing into a bitter stalemate. The early years of Anthos featured a true passing of the torch among the dwarves, as many long time Lords retired, requiring the selection of new Lords for the council which advised the Grand King. Hiebe Irongut and Bazian Grandaxe retired while Valen Grandaxe and Koryk Starbreaker passed away, the former finally succumbing to the wounds inflicted upon him in the Nether at the end of Aegis. The Articles of the Urguan, the constitution of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, were finalizes during this period, and would later be amended numerous times as situation demanded it. Tensions also began to rise with between Urguan and House Blackmont, a reconstituted and Imperial sanctioned House Flay, operating under the self dubbed Lord Augustus Blackmont, which had began to assert itself. Kolyat’s Reforms Sour Upheaval characterized the early years of Anthos for the Holy Princedom of Malinor. Friendless and nearly bankrupt, High Prince Kolyat’s government turned towards printing a new currency, paper malins, for circulation in Malinor’s internal economy. Inflation skyrocketed and confidence in the government plummeted to new lows after the botched roll out of the new currency. During the resulting upheaval and discord, the high elves of Haelun’or again broke off and founded their own settlement down the coast from Leumaelin, Lin'everal, electing Lucion Sullas as their new Sohaer. The dark elves also formed their own settlement at Darkhaven. Though ostensibly still loyal to Malinor, the dark elves desired a certain level of autonomy. However, Darkhaven never grew much beyond a handful of individuals from a scattering of clans. Amidst growing dissatisfaction and vocal calls for his ouster, Kolyat and most of his ministers departed Anthos in 1423 for what they claimed was the “Last Shore”. Nothing has been heard from the party that departed since, but their departure threw Malinor’s government into turmoil, and there was no reigning High Prince for a year. Azel Bloodseeker marshalled a force to march on the Holy Princedom, but Malinorian forces, with the assistance of the War Uzg, defeated the mixed band of forces that showed up to assail the city. Though most of the domestic threats had been dealt with, Malinor was not out of the fryer just yet. Goldman Co. Established Toveah Goldman, the enterprising human famous for the direct relationship between the size of his fortune and the shiz of his impressive waist, founded a commercial conglomerate in the Holy Oren Empire primarily based in Aldersberg. Following a merger with the long standing VonSchlitzen Co., Goldman’s commercial empire was unrivaled on the face of Anthos. He began to use whatever means were at his disposal to drive his competitors out of business, often bribing government officials to evict those that would not sell out to him or otherwise leveraging his immense assets to make life miserable. His immense wealth eventually lead to a government posting within the Empire as the Imperial Treasurer, replacing an ailing Duke Patrick Denims. Dissolution of the War Uzg Around this period, following the orcs defeat at the hands of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, the War Uzg disbanded and the various constituent clans of the orcs settled in their own camps scattered around the desert in the south east of Anthos. This brought an end to the Orcish-Uzg war. The clans (Gorkil, Ugluk, Lur, Braduk and Mur) spent most of their time fighting each other and launching raids outside of the desert wastes. This period was characterized by cultural development by the orcish clans as well as a loss in martial capacity. First Conclave of the Church The High Pontiff Lucien I called together a gathering of the clergy of what would eventually come to be known as the Most Holy Church of the One True Faith in 1424. Rather than meet in Abresi or Salvus, the Empire’s largest cities, the Chuch had established itself in Savoie, giving it never before seen independence from the Imperial State. While the Emperor was still nominally the head of the Church, ecclesiastical matters had effectively been ceded to the Church. The Conclave, once convened, debated and settled several theological and practical matters, including whether to bring the Halflings, who had taken to worshipping the Pumpkin God, back into the Church, as well as whether censorship of heretical works should be implemented within the Empire. The Church also began construction of its own diocesan structure, which to some degree was independent of the Empire’s political boundaries. Godfrey Enforces the Treaty of Dalroi Panic began to set in within Malinor following Emperor Godfrey’s issuance of a ultimatum to Holy Princedom in 1425, after he dispatched with a complement of the Order of the White Rose with orders to sack Malinor. There were many demands, but the largest was that all Malinorian land south and east of the river in front of Leumaelin be ceded to the Empire for its “growing space”, and that Malinor become a subject of the Empire, changing its name to the City-State of Malinor. The High Council, feeling unable to mount a resistance against the Empire’s vast armies, signed the treaty under great duress. Following the signing, Titania Hawksong was elected as High Princess. This began a dark period for the Malinor, from which it would never truly recover. Oren also acquired the halfling village of Lenfarthing and the Karakatua Islands in this round of expansion, bringing the entire north of Anthos under the Empire’s ever tightening control. Following Malinor’s subjugation, the Silver Enclave of Haelun’or became increasingly assertive under Sohaer Kalenz Uradir, a radical purist. Historians and observers now by and large agree that Kalenz suffered from a deteriorating psyche and all around demented mental state, but he managed to hide these traits through his inherent eccentricity and an inclination to take decisive action against Haelun’or’s enemies, perceived and actual. Alternating between internal purges and external provocations, Haelun’or drew the ire of the Druidic Order, which had reestablished itself in Malinor and rejoined the High Council. The Druids, especially Archdruid Callax, were horrified by Haelun’or’s clearcutting and wanton destruction of the forest surrounding the walls of their city for what the high elves claimed were “security concerns”. This nearly lead to an armed confrontation between the increasingly militant druids and the high elves, but the situation was diffused by the intervention of Malinorian officials concerned that unrest would draw even more unfavorable attention from the Empire. An uneasy peace would between the various factions in elven lands, though whispers of attrocities and reprisals would persist. The Order of the White Rose Moves to the Westerlands The land ceded by Malinor was granted to House Chivay and the Order of the White Rose for safekeeping, and would come to be known as the Westerlands. The White Rose, emboldened by the Empire’s triumph over Malinor, constructed the Theristes checkpoint in 1426 on the road between Malinor and Salvus, essentially cutting off the Holy Princedom from the rest of the world and preventing any elves or other “undesirables” from entering the Holy Oren Empire. Banditry, rapine and extravagant acts of violence were visited upon any who attempted to enter the checkpoint without proof of Imperial Citizenship. Protestations from the City-State of Malinor fell on deaf ears, and as the Order seldom left witnesses alive to testify to their misdeeds, little note was taken when they began to visit their campaign of terror against the Empire’s allies, the dwarves of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. Kaedrin focused most of its animus on dark elves, and to a lesser extent, wood elves, and found allies of like mind within the high elven government in the Silver State of Haelun’or. House Chivay extended its friendship towards the Silver State in what would be known as the Silver-Crimson Concordat, which solidified the relationship between the two increasingly militant states. It was under this alliance that the first true pogroms against elves within Malinor began, as “patrols” of White Roses would demand entry to Leumaelin under the pretext of the treaty, and then proceed to abuse any elf they could lay their hands on, often resulting in large scale massacres. Many high elves from Haelun’or assisted the White Rose in these endeavors, and would often execute or turn over any impure elves that happened to find themselves before the gates of Haelun’or. According to reports from some dissidents within Haelun’or, Sohaer Kalenz’s favored method of execution was dipping victims in acid. The Emperor is Dead, Long Live the Emperor Godfrey Horen passed away peacefully in 1427 following a final address to his people. He proclaimed the death of an age, and was unapologetic for the Empire he forged from the scattered kingdoms he had encountered upon his ascendance to the throne of the Kingdom of Renatus in Asulon. His son, Crown Prince Horen, was crowned as Emperor Horen V, and the affairs of Empire continued with the barest of interuptions. One of Horen V’s first acts was to grant the title of King of Kaedrin to House Chivay in 1428. This would bring the number of kingdoms within the Empire to three: Hanseti, Salvus and Kaedrin, ruled by House DeNurem, Hightower and Chivay respectively. Godfrey was not the only prominent human to pass in 1427. Toveah Goldman, having grown so rotund as to be unable to walk, died from from advanced diabetes. Following his death, his assets were liquidated and companies sold off, with his vast wealth being parcelled out among several nobles who had assisted him in his rise to wealth. The collapse of Goldman Co. caused a massive economic recession across all of Anthos, with only Malinor being insulated from the effects. The price of iron spiked 200% in some regioms, and work became impossible to find. It would take years for Goldman’s money to find its way back into the economy, and House Hightower in Salvus was severely weakened by the slack in trade, which was the lifeblood of their capital, Kingston. At this point, humanity had spread out across the northern reaches of Anthos, occupying every piece of land they could get their hands on. Prominent among these new settlements was Kralta, seat of House Carrion, located in what would soon become known as the Duchy of Ruska. House Valois, under Duchess Christienne, established their holding holdings in the Duchy of Auvergne while House Green founded Baile, perched atop the mountains north of Auvergne. The Silverblades continued to fortify their position in Furnestock while House Denins’ Therving administered the small farming town of Ager north of the towering walls of Abresi. House Stafyr and Ishikawa tended to their own holdings in the mountains south of Abresi. Controversially, Lord Augustus Blackmont was granted the Dreadfort south of Hanseti and north of Malinor, and Blackmont and DeNurem feuded with each other, often involving the other noble houses. Godfrey passage from the realm of the Descendants while the Empire was at its imperial height, and there would be few times in the future that Oren ever came close to reacquiring this zenith. Rising Threat of the Scourge Beginning with a series of lightning raids on human and elven settlements in northern Anthos in 1430, a group of grotesque beings known as the Scourge, lead by a dreadful Harbinger known as Setherien, began to rise as a major threat to the Descendants. Direct confrontations occurred across the north, including at Kralta following a particularly horrific raid, but the Scourge evaporated into the night before the knights rallied by Duke Braxis Silverblade could meet them in battle. The first major military engagement occurred at the Druid’s Grove immediately to the north of Leumaelin, where an elven force attempting to clear the grove of invaders was ambushed within the Druidic library and massacred. A large relief force from the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, which had been notified of the incursion by the Scourge, was nearly wiped out as well, sending the Descendants reeling. Calls were sent out united action against this threat, but as the Empire’s attention would soon be consumed by an internal conflict, nothing came of these tragedies as the Scourge continues to attack the less populated areas of northern Anthos. The Trial of Dreek Ireheart The Grand Kingdom of Urguan, at the behest of Grand King Thorin, brought a series of charges against the former Lord Dreek Ireheart in 1431. He had been forced out of his leadership positions in the Legion, the Council of Lords and the cadet Stormhammer Clan before being arrested for the crimes of greed and treason under the Articles of Urguan. Throughout the public trial, which proved to be an explosive spectacle in the Grand Kingdom, it emerged that most of the charges were trumped up or based on unreliable or misunderstood testimony, and eventually all charges were dropped. There were grumblings about Thorin’s increasingly authoritarian rule, but Dreek’s acquittal seemed to set most dwarves at ease. Battle of the Dreadfort An escalating set of confrontations between elements within the Holy Oren Empire lead to the creation of two factions, centered on the competing powers of Hanseti and Blackmont. The Order of the White Rose and House Chivay had thrown in with the Blackmonts, while the Shields of Salvus, under the direction of James I Hightower, supported the Sariants. House Carrion and Silverblade fell in with Blackmont, while House Elendil and Green swore oaths of support to Mirtok DeNurem. Emperor Horen V implicitly gave his support to a confrontation between the two groups under the auspices of low crown authority, and let it be known he would support whichever side prevailed in the coming martial contest. The Battle of the Dreadfort will perhaps go down as one of the most consequential assaults in the long history of internal human conflicts, rivaling in intensity to the Dukes’ War and the Courlandic Rebellion. The Sariants of the Teutonic Order, under the direction of King Mirtok DeNurem, launched an all out assault on the Dreadfort in 1431. The works were defended by the North Anthos Treaty Organization (NATO), which was comprised of the Blackmonts and their numerous allies. The Sariants bombarded the Dreadfort for hours, and launched repeated assaults on any breach they could establish in its walls, managing to break into the lower levels of the castle. As the Dreadfort crumbled around the defenders, things looks increasingly hopeless, until King Peter Chivay rallied the NATO forces into a final counterattack, directing his forces out a clandestine passage built into the Dreadfort’s foundations. With the fortresses’ towers collapsing around them the defenders gathered, leaving only a token force defending the walls. After he judged sufficient men had gathered for a sally, Peter Chivay lead them out in a great rush, overwhelming the scattered Sariants and allies scattered outside of the destroyed bastion. The Teutons were pressed back to the bridge connecting Hanseti to points south, and Mirtok ordered the bridge burned to prevent the Blackmonts from advancing any further. The failure to seize the Dreadfort proved disastrous for the Kingdom of Hanseti, which was promptly dissolved by the Emperor. It also directly lead to the Massacre of Kingston the following year in 1432, where the Orenian Inquisition, under the direction of Thomas Chivay, utterly annihilated the Shields of Salvus and evicted House Hightower from Salvus, though House Hightower would eventually regain their Kingdom upon joining their House with House Horen through matrimony, becoming House Horen-Hightower. The accompanying White Rose proceeded to the sack the city, destroying much of its accumulated wealth. Act II: Things Fall Apart (1432- 1442) Breaking the Blood Pact After a confrontation outside of Salvus in late 1432 where a Dwarven Lord was murdered by member of the Order of White Rose, Grand King Thorin alerted the Emperor, Horen V, that unless the heads of the King of Kaedrin and the Commanders of the White Rose were delivered to him, that he would consider the Blood Pact null and void. Horen V is said to have smirked, happy to have the excuse to attack his allies in order to gain their vast territory for his own Empire, having run out of weaker states to seize lands from. As armies across Anthos mobilized, a vast propaganda war was initiated by both sides, attempting to drive up morale and diminish that of their foes. Seeing an opportunity to break Abresi’s rival for preeminent status within the Empire, Horen V ordered the evacuation of all of Salvus’ citizenry to the capital, Abresi, in the name of keeping them safe from the war. Only a token force of Shields to hold the city with Lord Aron Bedevere was maintained, substantially weakening the Kingdom and driving its merchant houses out of business, forcing them to relocate to Abresi. Battle of the Nations Crossing The vast hosts of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan and their allies and the Empire maneuvered around each other until inevitably met at the crossroads between North and South, the Nations Crossing, in 1433. The dwarves occupied the southern bank while the humans settled in on the north, constructing a great war camp. As forces trickled in, the Empire prepared to force the crossing, and a massive army of nearly 200 Orenians knights and men at arms clashed with a smaller host of 120 dwarves and allied forces, including a detachment from the orcs, who had grown wary of the Empire’s growing power. The Empire’s greater numbers were too much to stand on the open field, and the dwarven army was driven into a rout back towards their fortress, Storm’s Crossing, where a large chunk of their army was surrounded. While Urguan’s forces were largely intact, the battle dealt a major blow to dwarven morale and a coup to that of the Empire, which would hold the initiative in war going forward. The Waagh and Other Happenings The orcs, still operating as a loose and constantly shifting coalition of clans, began a campaign known as the Waagh in 1434. This initiative was launched following several clashes with Orenian crusaders under the banner of the Order of St. Amyas, which had established a fortified citadel in the orcish wastes. The orcs first target was Malinor, which was pillaged by an invading orcish horde without intervention from its claimed overlords in the Empire. Grool’Gorkil also began gathering orcs around the Trog, a trading outpost near the Cloud Temple, where orcs variably traded with outsiders while organizing raiding parties to bring death and destruction upon their enemies. Power gradually shifted from the clans in the decaying ruins of the War Uzg to the Trog, and the orcs began rebuilding the strength that had been lost during their previously unsuccessful war with Dwarves. By 1436, as the rest of Anthos was consumed by chaos, a new Rex rose, reconstituting the War Uzg. Wulghen’Lur took over as Rex, with Pok’Ugluk as his Targoth. The orcs then moved into the now abandoned ruins of Hanseti, taking up watch over the far North as an increasingly active Scourge began to make more sorties into the chaos consumed realm of Anthos. At the Moment of Triumph When the expected imperial offensive following their crushing victory at Nation’s Crossing failed to materialize, the Descendants began to hold their breath, though none could have predicted what would follow. In early 1435, it was announced that the Emperor and many of his closest allies boarded ships and sailed for the far off continent of Aeldrin in 1435. The Exodus, as it would come to be known, threw the Empire into chaos, with riots breaking out among the peasantry in many cities. Most of the Imperial military was made up of personal bannermen from the nobility, and as these detachments were called home to put down unrest and restore order, dwarven forces emerged from Storm’s Crossing and began to threaten the Empire’s southern border. By 1436 William III was sitting on the Imperial throne, but things were clearly not well in the Empire. Grand King Thorin dispatched a list of demands to the Empire for peace, and as its military crumbled, it became evident that the Empire was in no position to prosecute the war to completion. Fracture The Order of the White Rose, with most of its leadership departing with Horen V, disbanded, leaving the Kingdom of Kaedrin mostly empty. Seeing no other option, Emperor William III dissolved the Empire and reformed the Kingdom of Oren, cutting Salvus loose as a vassal under House Hightower to Grand King Thorin. William III also dissolved the Kingdom of Kaedrin, which Grand King Thorin then ceded to the Adunians, who had assisted the dwarves in the war, while all elven and halfling lands seized by the Treaty of Dalroi were returned. The Kingdom of Galahar, under a newly reformed House Flay, House Greymane and part of House Silverblade, broke away. Finally, the Teutonic Order was reestablished and granted a piece of land to build a new fortress. William III also cast off the title of Emperor, resuming the title of King of Oren, abolishing the First Empire of Godfrey. By 1437, the Edict of the Three Kingdoms acknowledged the Kingdom of Galahar, containing Talonsport and Ascalon, as well as the Kingdom of Savoie, containing Kralta and Aldersberg, as well as the Kingdom of Oren, centered on a newly rebuilt Abresi and the Duchies of Auvergne, Furnestock and Northal, as the three legitimate human powers. Northal would later become known as Herendul, under Harold Winter, Anthos’ most famed cartographer. Together these powers launched an invasion of the Republic of Gallmore, a breakaway human state in the Wilds. The Kingdom of Galahar would later be diplomatically integrated into the Kingdom of Savoie following the decline of House Flay. Malinor Resurgent As part of the peace treaty, all lands taken by the Empire were returned to the now independent Shining Princedom of Malinor, and a new golden era began, with High Princess Titania ruling the High Council with a fair and judicious hand. After a brief confrontation, the mage state of the Arcane Delvers was brought back into the fold in 1440, and a new settlement, Leanniel, would be constructed in the following years. Diplomatic relations were reestablished with the high elves in Haelun’or, and Malinor assisted Haelun’or when it was attacked by a punitive expedition from the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. Rise of the Raevir and House Carrion, Fall of Adunia It was not long after the first Empire was dissolved that a much reduced nobility began squabbling over the scraps. The Kingdom of Savoie began an invasion of the Kingdom of Adunia in nearby Ildon, desiring total control of the Westerlands. This caused the collapse of the Northern Coalition, which had been fighting the Scourge, and as Ildon fell, House Carrion and the streltsy Raevir became dominant in the Westerlands. A new town, Flotsam, was founded in a rich fishing waters and near a coal seam, the town took on a unique working class character, and the famed Kraltan Coal Miners’ Union was formed, waging a populist campaign for workers’ and peasants’ rights. Additionally, High Pontiff Owyn II was crowned in 1438, instituting a new era of political dealmaking for the Church of the One True Faith. House Carrion would rise to the Crown of Savoie in 1440, and would rename the kingdom to the Kingdom of Ruska. A New Grand King Grand King Thorin Grandaxe passed away in 1439, bringing about the end of an era in the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. Thorin ruled for over 20 years, an impressive figure by the Descendants’ standards, and is indisputably one of the most consequential Grand Kings in the history of Urguan, having navigated the Grand Kingdom through the greatest war in the Descendants’ history and stabilizing the Kingdom’s economy on multiple occasions. An election was held following the announcement of Thorin’s death, and after a lengthy period of voting, Dizzy Irongrinder would take the throne. One of his first actions as Grand King was to strip Yemekar’s Pick Bael Tunnelsmasher of all his titles and to call him to account for his alleged crimes. This threw the Grand Kingdom into a state of discord, leaving it poorly situated to react to rising events. Restoration of the Empire As chaos in the human realms abated, there grew a desire for the reformation of the Holy Oren Empire. Silus II Horen had risen to King of Oren, Siegmund Carrion as King of Ruska and Harold Winter as King of Herendul. The three Kingdoms were united under Siegmund Carrion as the first Emperor of the Carrion Vochna, with the Kings of Oren, renamed Renatus and Herendul subservient to the Emperor. This came following the intimidation of Silus II by High Pontiff Owyn II, and Silus II agreed to the Carrion terms out of fear for the lives of citizens of Abresi. Emperor Siegmund’s administration completed the reconstruction of Abresi, allowing Tuvyah Goldman to take over the Empire economic institutions in order to restore the Empire’s vast wealth. There were also reforms to the imperial legion and the knighthood, with the nobility losing much of their control over their personal armed hosts. The Church of the One True Faith also underwent reforms, placing it again under the auspices of the Imperial Throne. A Carrion, Franz Joseph, rose to be High Ecclesiarch Radomir I, the new leader of the One True Faith. Fall of Salvus The Kingdom of Salvus, nominally a vassal of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, would pass from House Hightower to House Bedevere, with Lord Aron Bedevere being granted the throne by an aging King Garth Hightower. The orcs, having tired of occupying Hanseti and disturbed by newfound strength in the Empire which laid claim to the former Duchy in Anthos’ far north, decided to launch an assault on Salvus. Following a series of fierce battles, the once great city of Kingston fell into the orcs hands in 1441. The War Uzg undertook a great project to dismantle the buildings within and convert them to orcish dwellings. The great metropolis of Gronkstonn took shape, filled with heaping tenements and bustling bazaars. Though Kingston was lost to humanity, Salvus and its remaining titles were taken up by the Empire, with Relenkai Bedevere being maintained as King of a few empty acres of forest southwest of the Duchy of Auvergne. Opening of Kal’Ithrun The dwarves of Urguan, desiring a presence closer to the other nations now clustered in the North, constructed a new city at the fortress of Storm’s Crossing. This followed the consolidation of all dwarves in the capital with the implementation of Kjell Act. The Grand Kingdom then launched several minor campaigns against internal holdouts to the Kjell Act, leveling all secondary cities within their lands. The Three Circles Moot The Druids, having been driven from Northern Malinor following the invasion of the Scourge, had become quite fractured. As they drifted from place to place, many took up residence on the back of a great sea turtle. Numerous circles of likeminded druids formed, and there was little structure when it was decided to create the position of grand druid in 1442 when a moot was called by Song Druid Arik. The Wayward Druid, Respiren, founder of modern Druidism during Aegis, had reemerged. His commentary proved influential during the Moot, and Druid Verden emerged as the consensus pick as the new Grand Druid, and took up the task of shepherding the druids through the dark days ahead. Act III: Familiar Occurrences (1443-1453) Discord in Urguan An insurrection launched by Dreek Ireheart in the dwarven city of Telemar in the Wilds initiated a short lived independent Kingdom in 1443. Though the rebels were eventually brought back into the fold, many in the Grand Kingdom were dissatisfied with the rule of Dizzy Irongrinder, who they viewed as overly friendly towards the elves of Malinor, having initiated the construction of a costly underground railway connecting Urguan and Malinor. Grand King Dizzy was thrown out of office by his Council, and the subsequent election chose Indago Stormhammer as Grand King in 1445. Rise of a Claimant and the Royal Rebellion Sophia Horen, the lost Imperial Princess, emerged in 1444 to lay claim to the Imperial Throne, declaring the Carrion line as false Emperors. She was supported by a coalition of foreign powers and internally within Oren by a group known as the Royal Rebellion under Huron Silverblade. While there was intermittent fighting between the two groups, Sophia and her forces never managed to wrangle control of the the Empire from the Carrions. Huron Silverblade was eventually captured and tried for his crimes following the botched rebel assault on Schattenburg, the seat of House Stafyr. Campaign against Haelun’or The orcs of a reformed Krugmar gathered a great host at their capital in Gronkkston, preparing to march on the high elves of Haelun’or to bring them to account for many alleged crimes. A green wave of orcs and their allies, groups of dwarves and humans, crashed against the walls of Haelun’or, overrunning the silver city’s meagre defenses. This would be the second purging of Haelun’or by the orcs. Following the battle, Grool’Gorkil’Azog sent out a call for a spiritual rebirth in Krugmar, and gathered prospective shamans under his tutelage, reviving the decimated order. Flay-Malinor Clashes House Flay had begun initiating confrontations with Malinor once again, but in a change of events, Malinor initiated raids against the Flay lands as well as Abresi. High Princess Titania lead several piercing raids into the Empire, often exposing herself to capture at the hands of various parties, human and orc. The conflict was resolved without any true battles being fought, but decisionmakers within the second Empire began to work to undermine the new threat Shining Princedom of Malinor. Herendul Confrontation and the Battle of Shadowcastle Imperial forces, under the direction of House Winder of Herendul, began incursions in the Grand Kingdom’s territory, assaulting dwarves and raiding Kal’Ithrun numerous times. This lead to Grand King Indago Stormhammer delivering a list of demands to Emperor Siegmund Carrion in 1446. This ultimatum was rejected by the Emperor, and war between the two relatively equally matched powers was initiated. The first real confrontation would come at Shadowcastle. Rebel forces, aided by the Teutonic Order and dwarves marched on Shadowcastle in 1447, hoping to crush the Imperial garrison. The siege lasted for weeks, with reports of activity by the Scourge to undermine the defenders. While Imperial forces under House Carrion proved victorious on the field of battle, Shadowcastle was mostly destroyed while the Teutonic Order escaped intact, moving south to their fortress. Both sides dug in along a series of trenches south of the Nation’s Crossing, near Thoringrad, using the river as a barrier. The Eternal Emperor Emperor Siegmund Carrion passed from the realm of Anthos in late 1447, with his grave being consecrated into a new temple for pilgrims of the One True Faith. He was succeeded at first by his nephew, Henry I Carrion, who styled himself as King of Oren rather than Emperor, dissolving the Holy Oren Empire for a second time under much less dramatic circumstances. The young Henry would not rule long, and was usurped by Heinrik I Carrion, who would begin his reign by focusing his efforts on uniting the Descendants against the increasing threat from the Scourge in the North. To these ends, he lead a combined assault to retake the halfling village of Lenfarthing from the Scourge in late 1448. United Anthos Coalition (Northern Coalition) forces were successful against the Scourge, driving them from the vales of the halflings and liberating the village. Second Battle of Storm’s Crossing Human forces would again push across the bridge in front of Storm’s Crossing, fighting a pitched battle with the forces of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan there in 1449. The Orenians rose out of their trenches and charges across the bridge, overwhelming the dwarven defenders with sheer numbers. The dwarves were sent reeling back towards the their capital, Kal’Ithrun, and took up defensive positions around the city, preparing for a seige. The war would continue for several years, with positions barely shifting as both sides dug in along the new front. Any advantage on the front was illusory, as neither side could gain the upper hand. Some of the dwarven lords agreed to an alliance with Setherien and the Scourge in a fit of desperation. A battle was fought at the fortress of Thoringrad, ending in a defeat for the Grand Kingdom of Urguan and a intense internal pressure for peace within Urguan. A New High Prince and the fall of Leumaelin Following the resignation of High Princess Titania Hawksong, who had ruled Malinor for quite some time, the High Council elected High Prince Eleron Sylvaeri, a relative newcomer to Malinor, in 1450. Around the same time Prince Darius DeNurem was elevated to the High Council, and he began military reforms. Eleron’s rule was quickly challenged by the fall of the Malinorian capital of Luminaire (renamed from Leumaelin) to the forces of the Scourge. Malinor reconstituted itself further South, at New Malinor, and was joined there by the high elves, who had abandoned Lin’everal due to massive earthquakes rendering the city unsafe. New Malinor was shoddily constructed due to the unexpected nature of its necessity, and disaffected voices within the Princedom began to ride in tenor. The Conclave of Malin The Conclave had initially been founded as a group attempting to reform the Shining Princedom of Malinor, but its leader, Kalameet Izalith, guided in a more radical direction. He desired the overthrow of the Princedom due to his allegations of persecution, though he openly admitted to being a serial killer and dark magic user. He was joined by a strange coalition of magic users and malcontents, and they, under the leadership of a traitor, Prince Darius DeNurem, decided to march on New Malinor. Initially, the Princedom’s leadership did not take the threat seriously, but by 1450, when the Conclave arrived at the gates, Prince Darius initiated a coup within the Princedom, capturing the High Council and ordering the Lumindrin to open the gates. New Malinor was sacked, and its residents fled to Leanniel and Darkhaven, which had declared their neutrality in the war. The Princedom fell, betrayed by its own people, and was replaced by chaos and discord. Kalameet declared himself Justiciar of the Conclave of Malin, and set about forming his new state. The Conclave moved to consolidate its hold on power, bringing in the towns of Leanniel and Darkhaven in 1451 through pressuring the Talonii Confederacy into folding through threat of Orenian invasion. The briefly extant Talonii Confederacy had many wood elves who would become increasingly influential in its ranks, including Elorna, Sathoro Shadeleaf, Dwyn Tinuvial and Artimec Camoryn. Leanniel was eventually allowed to fall to the Scourge, as Darius DeNurem became the new Justiciar following the death of Kalameet in 1452. Closing Actions in the Oren-Urguan War Oren and Urguan, tiring of the war between them, concluded peace in 1451. Borders remained mostly unchanged, with the exception of minor Orenian gains in the North. The end of the war also brought about the end of the Adunians as a major force in Anthos, as they had lost their hard gained homeland and had no realistic expectation for new lands. House Elendil faded from the scene, their legacy uncertain. Wulfgar Grandaxe and the Ondnarch Crisis The end of the war against Oren brought about a desire for change within the Grand Kingdom, and Wulfgar Grandaxe was elected Grand King in late 1452. Indago Stormhammer had concluded a secret alliance with Setherien and Scourge in order to aid the dwarves in their faltering war effort, and had thus been discredited and cast out, Wulfgar promised to restore the Grand Kingdom to its former glory, while also maintaining its honor and its dedication to defend Anthos from the Scourge. The Grand Kingdom of Urguan also dealt with an internal crisis throughout the early 1450s, facing down an invasion from the Ondnarch, a strange being from Dwarven myth. Battle for the North Heinrik I Carrion, again taking the initiative within the United Anthos Coalition against the Harbingers of the Scourge, initiated an offensive against them in the North throughout 1453 and 1454. Coalition forces advanced through the gates of Hanseti into the heartland of the Scourge’s domains, destroying many Scourge and facing new enemies straight out of the Descendants’ nightmares. The humans were joined in this offensive by the orcs, dwarves and elves, offering a unified front against the Scourge for perhaps the final time. Rise of the Lucienists The Lucienists, an order of Orenian Knights dedicated to the teachings of High Pontiff Lucien I, particularly in regards to the persecution of dark elves, grew during this period of military conflict with Urguan. They were founded following the Second Conclave of the True Faith, where questions about the fidelity of the Ruskan Orthodox Church were raised. The Order skirmished with the dark elves of Darkhaven in early 1452 in an attempt to recover a relic, a golden Cross of the True Faith. Based from the Temple of Ard Krallackh in the old Kingdom of Kaedrin, the Lucienists began expanding their influence, offering their interpretations of doctrine to any they viewed as having fallen out of commune with the church, especially members of the Ruskan Orthodox Church in Kralta and Flotsam. The Tomb The high elves, having lost their city due to earthquakes, went underground, literally, moving into a temporary subterranean settlement known as the Tomb. The high elves began stitching their society back together, attempting to rebuild after the destruction of Lin’everal and the general scattering of their race. Still, much had been lost, and the world of Anthos would soon become a dark place indeed, with the cold dark of the Tomb offering safety and protection to the high elves. The Glorious Ruskan Revolution Rising tensions within the Kingdom of Oren broke into an open confrontation in 1454 with the delivery of an ultimatum by the Kraltan peasantry, lead by Wilfriche Buron, over religious disagreements with the Order of St. Lucien and High Pontiff Regulus I. Attempts to mend the Schism were unsuccessful, and the Raevir streltsy, centered on the village of Flotsam, declared their independence from the Church of the One True Faith as well as the Kingdom of Oren. The Jolly Ruskan Band of Brothers and Sisters overtook the Flotstad, seat of House Denims-Therving in Flotsam. A duma was called in the Flotstad, and the Free Peoples' Sovetski of Ruska was declared, acknowledging no Lords over the streltsy of Ruska. The Lucienists immediately began to put down the streltsy’s rebellion, striking from nearby Kaedrin. Ruskan forces were repeatedly defeated in skirmishes in the Rosemoor and Hanseti, but the Lucienists struggled to pin down the Ruskans, who had the total support of the area’s peasantry. The conflict between the Ruskans and Lucienists would be halted for a time, as the Ruskans were still loyal to the Carrion line though tensions simmered as Oren moved into a new era. Erik’Azog Rises to Rex Erik’Azog, also known as Erok, once Sariant and now again a faithful orc of Krugmar, rose to the Rexdom in 1454 following a period of instability in Krugmar. He began to prepare the orcish hordes to depart Gronkkston, which was increasingly threatened by Scourge incursions from all sides. The old Cloud Temple had fallen to the Scourge, and as their undead forces poured out of the Cloudlands, things looked increasingly grim for the Descendants. Tunnel to the Fringe The Descendants, following a battle to retake the corrupted Cloud Temple, discovered the Door to Eternity. A strange new group calling themselves the The Order of the Golden Lance claimed that three keys were necessary to open the Door, through which a new weapon to fight Setherien would be found. After the three keys were claimed, the Door to Eternity was opened an a long tunnel was uncovered, leading to a strange new realm ringed by high mountains and dominated by strange terrain. Adventurers from Anthos would soon enter this realm, dubbing it the Fringe. Anthos would continue for plodding along for a time, emptying of its residents. Once Setherien began his final assault, the Order of the Golden Lance, with the assistance of the Descendants, used an artifact known as the Golden Lance to defeat Setherien. The defeat of the Scourge, however, caused the great ice caps in the North to melt, sending a giant wave to drown Anthos. The Door to Eternity was sealed against this thread, with the Descendents becoming stranded in the close quarters of the Fringe. Act IV: The Fringe and Thales (1455-1469) Evacuation of the Dwarves and the Return of Alras The Grand Kingdom of Urguan quickly ordered an evacuation of all dwarves to the newfound Fringe, where they linked up with a newly resurfaced High King Syrio of Alras to fortify a position in a strange circular rock formation. By far the most defensible position in the Fringe, the dwarves and Alrasians dug in to the newly founded Kal’Arkon, daring any of their competitors to attempt to dislodge them from the valuable terrain. Fall of Edward Winter Soon after establishing the city of Vekaro at the center of the Fringe, King Heinrik I ordered the arrest and capture of Edward II Winter, the former Lord Chancellor of the Kingdom of Oren. Wilfriche Buron, formerly of the Ruskan Revolution, was appointed to fill his position. Edward II Winter would be tried for his crimes in late 1455. The Fringe War The Zionist Treaty, signed in 1455, established a new alliance of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, the Rexdom of Krugmar, the Kingdom of Alras, and the Conclave of Malin, aimed at combating the rising power of the Kingdom of Oren. The Zionists would eventually declare war on the Silver-Crimson Concordat, comprising the Silver Enclave of Haelun’or and the Kingdom of Oren, in late 1455 following the sack of the Conclave. This kicked off one of the largest conflicts in the Descendants history, with large armies clashing repeatedly along a narrow stretch of land between Vekaro and Kal’Arkon. The Zionist coalition was also known as the Teutonic Conspiracy among many in the Kingdom of Oren, as one of its primary military commanders was Mirtok DeNurem, and two of the parties, the Conclave of Malin and Rexdom of Krugmar were headed by former Sariants. The fidelity of the Teuton Conspiracy is on of many unsettled questions from this era. Tyranny at Tahn’Siol The high elves, having abandoned the Tomb for the Fringe, and again under the direction of Sohaer Kalenz Uradir, set about building a new enclave not far from the human capital of Vekaro. This new city, however, was comprised of districts, with Tahn’siol’s upper district exclusively for the high elves, with divided lower districts for the wood elves and dark elves. With the fading of the Conclave of Malin and the disappearance of Darius DeNurem, there were few places elves could live other than under the watchful gaze of Kalenz. He and his supporters enacted tyrannical laws against their elven cousins, often refusing them shelter against raiders while also dispatching their own raiding parties against unaligned elven settlements. Power Struggle after the Death of Heinrik I King Heinrik I Carrion’s rule came to an end in early 1456 after he was tragically killed in battle with the forces of the Zionist alliance, capping off decade of rule was characterized by an unfailing dedication to the people of the Kingdom of Oren. He was succeeded by King Franz I Carrion, and the Empire under his reign proceeded to bring tensions with the Order of St. Lucien to a head. Ordering the expulsion of the Order, he kicked off an intense civil war within Oren. The Church of the One True Faith, split in two by declaration, offered conflicting proclamations and edicts. After a betrayal by their own forces, King Franz I and Lord Chancellor Wilfriche Buron were surrounded and killed by the Lucienists in mid 1456, leading to the establishment of a regency by High Pontiff Regulus I and the Lucienist nobles. Most of Oren’s nobility pledged to the regency, and House Carrion’s forces were thrown into a retreat from Vekaro. The Carrion loyalists, rallying to Crown Prince Roy Carrion, would take up residence in Mt. Augustus, making a stand there in late 1456, driving off the first assault of the Lucienists and their allies. The Third Empire, the Imperium Tertius The news that Peter Chivay, the former King of Kaedrin and old scion of the Empire, had returned from Aeldrin flashed through the Kingdom of Oren. Peter I Chivay received the restored Crown of the Holy Oren Empire at Mt. Gren in the ruins of the old Cathedral of Abresi. The appearance of Emperor Godfrey I Horen’s apparition to bless his rule caused all present to tremble in awe and stunned the world alike. As dubious as it sounds, the appearance of Godfrey apparition is undoubtedly one greatest inexplicable events in the history of the Descendants. Emperor Peter I Chivay set about reforming the Empire, bringing the varioys human factions, including the Teutonic Order under a returned Mitrok DeNurem, into its fold. A new capital, Kaldonia, was constructed in 1457, moving the center of power from the Carrion stronghold of Vekaro. Discord in Urguan Following the departure of Grand King Wulfgar Grandaxe, Hogarth Irongut, son of Hiebe Irongut, was overwhelmingly elected Grand King of Urguan in 1457. Hogarth reinvigorated the dwarven government, filling many of the vacant positions on the Council of Lords with new blood, ending an era of stagnancy among the dwarven leadership. His reign was admittedly short, with High King Hogarth stepping down in 1459 following the signing of the Resolution of Kal’Arkon with Emperor Peter Chivay in 1458. This brought an temporary end to the war between the Third Empire and the Grand Kingdom. However, shortly following the signing of the resolution, hostilities commenced after groups of what the Empire deemed unaffiliated humans began to raid the Grand Kingdom. The Krughanistan Bloc, comprised of Urguan, Alras and the Orcs of Krugmar managed to defeat the Orenians in numerous larger skirmishes, though their lands and settlements in the Fringe often fell victim to smaller raiding parties. It was during 1459 that the Lords Dizzy Zahrer Irongrinder were arrested and tried for election tampering and treason against the Grand Kingdom. The trial ended in a guilty verdict for Dizzy Irongrinder and his removal from the Council of Lords. However, like most most dwarven trials, this one too descended into a chaotic airing of grievances featuring copious amounts of slander against all parties involved, much to the consternation of the dwarven public. A Gathering of Elves The elves, without any real central authority, began to discuss their future in council meetings within the inn of Haelun’or. The group comprising of Sohaer Kalenz Uradir, Maheral Lucion Sullas, Silir'ilume, Iatrilemar Elervathar and Ikur representing the high elves of Haelun’or, Elorna Lle'hileia and Asthil Haumel of the wood elves and Dak'ir Des’Nox, Jiub and Oropher of the dark elves. The new guidelines governing the relationship between Tahn’siol and her satellite districts took shape in these meetings, though larger problems of equality between the elven cousins remained unaddressed. The combined forces of the elves, supported by nearby elements of the Imperial Legion, turned back a coordinated Krughanistan Bloc assault on Tahn’siol in 1459. Under Sohaer Kalenz’ watchful eye, the forces of Haelun’or began terrorizing elves living outside the walls of Tahn’siol. Any independent settlements were sacked, and elves living in other realms were abducted and tortured in the city’s vast dungeons. Internal dissent to these policies was crushed, and many wood elves and dark elves began to question just what they had gotten themselves into. Reforms in the Church Archbishop John was ordained High Pontiff Paul III in late 1457, following the deposing of High Pontiff Pius II during the Third Conclave of the Church of The True Faith. From the outset he was opposed by Lucienist elements of the Church, and the 21 Theses For the Dissolution of the Darfeyist Church in 1459. This was followed by the Emperor declaring for the Lucien Reformist Church as outlined by Basil of Sabris and Simon of Khazav, sending Paul of Darfey into hiding and reigniting the schism within the Church between the Ruskan Orthodox faction and the Lucienists. Grand King Vorstag Grand King Vorstag Blackaxe was elected to the throne in 1459, and would lead the dwarves through some of the heaviest days of fighting with the Empire. By late 1460, the Lords’ Council convened in secret and removed Vorstag from his position, throwing the Grand Kingdom into tumult. Part of the allegations were in relation to what was decided was a false trial against Dizzy Irongrinder. Though the charges of treason against Vorstag were ultimately dropped, it was agreed that he could not return to the throne, and yet another Grand King’s election was held, resulting in the election of Kjell Ireheart II, also known as Midgor, to the throne. Capture of Eleron Sylvaeri Eleron Sylvaeri, former High Prince of Malinor, was captured by Orenian forces in Vekaro following his arrival at the trial of his wife, the Maheral of Haelun’or. He too was tried for crimes allegedly committed during his time as High Prince of Malinor against the Raevir people. Found guilty by a show trial, he and his wife were brutally executed with the implicit support of Kalenz’Uradir, who saw their deaths as yet another way to eliminate rivals among the high elves. Plague Shortly after Hochmeister Mirtok DeNurem’s speech rousing the Krughanistan Bloc in defense of Kal’Arkon in late 1460, then besieged by the Empire, a plague struck the Descendants gathered in the Fringe. Eventually called the Black Foot Plague due to its horrific symptons, all fighting within the Fringe came to a halt as everyone searched desperately for a cure. Once one was found and distributed by the Empire, an uneasy peace settled over the Fringe, as tension, as well as the temperature, began to creep upwards. A Lion’s Last Roar Emperor Peter I Chivay passed from the realm of the Fringe in 1462. His was the death of a great man, though almost certainly not a good man, and from his start as a bannerman to House Silverblade through his rise to Emperor of the Holy Oren Empire he caused enormous amounts of suffering and devastation. However, he rebuilt an Empire, and his line continued with his son, Emperor Robert I Chivay, who would rule the Third Empire for the coming transition to a new world. Out of the Blast Furnace The ecological changes wrought by the habitation of the Descendants began to cascade in 1463, as warming within the Fringe caused devastating crop failures and desperate famine. Water sources began to dry up and food became scarce as the Descendants searched for a way out of the Fringe. As hope prepared its last gasp, a bright crimson light appeared in the sky, and a portal to a new, verdant realm opened. Casting aside their possessions in a rush of desperation, the Descendants entered the portal, emerging in the realm of Thales, and returning to the universe from which they had left a hundred years before. Thales The six years that the Descendants spent in Thales were mostly occupied by resource gathering and the construction of ships to find a larger, more suitable area to inhabit. A few events of consequence occured, however. Among them, the crushing of the Council of Splinters by Haelun’or, the formal dissolution of the Krughanistan Bloc, with the Sariants of the Teutonic Order refounding Hanseti bear mentioning. In 1469 the Descendants short stay in Thales came to a close, with the humans, elves, dwarves and orcs gathering at the Port City of Tuv Aviv and set out for a new land, Athera.
  5. The Second Sky Act I: New Beginnings (1351-1362) Events quickly devolved into chaos with the Descendants’ arrival in Asulon. The genesis of great transformations that would shape the course of future events can be found in these early, heady days in Asulon. Crop failures cascaded into widespread famine and death as the disunited Descendants struggled to secure scarce resources. This section will begin by addressing some of the most significant events with an eye at those that would become more and more important upon reflection. The first of these, of course, is the founding of Haelun’or. The First Silver City Upon exit from the portal from Aegis, a group of high elves converged upon the ruins of an ancient university relatively close to the other elven settlements. Archaeological evidence pointed to a group of high elves having inhabited the area some five hundred years before, though records were fragmentary at best. Many of these high elves had been involved in the lengthy effort towards recovery of the elven tongue during the waning days of Aegis. This group, taking inspiration from this doomed civilization, decided to settle at the university’s location, raising great towers and launching many efforts of academic inquiry. These first mali’aheral elected Dio Astore as their leader, giving him the title of Maheral. The rest of the elves took up residence in the forest city of Elandriel, though their holdings there would soon become threatened by malevolent forces from the darkest depths of the forests at the interior of the elven isles. Several new figures rose to prominence in this period in Malinor, including the Princes Orlanden and Bravepaw of the news grown tree city of Normandor. Cities, Old and New On Asulon’s mainland, a string of human settlements took shape, stretching from Hansetti through Renatus, Salvus, Seventis and finally the merchant Kingdom of Alras. Hansetti was the fruition of the efforts by the Sariants of the Teutonic Order to secure a proper homeland for the Order. Renatus, perched in the ruins of an ancient human city, Arethor, housed the remnants of the Phoenix Rebellion, still under the command of King Eze'kiel Tarus. King Tarus was joined by several of the prominent families of old Oren, including the Thervings, Hightowers and Silverblades. Salvus, the project of Queen Dawn Perea and King Edmund Sheffield, was situated quite near the Wilven Sanctuary, the domain of the Cloud Temple Monks, and was disposed towards agriculture, policed by the peacekeepers. Seventis’ origins are more obscure, but it featured tightly packed slums east of the Wilven Sanctuary. Finally, a reborn Alras arose nearer the War Uzg on the Alrasian sea, positioning itself to take advantage of cross continental trade. Leaving Kal’Karik The dwarves, like the high elves, found remnants of a collapsed civilization in Asulon, and similarly moved into the city that these ancients had left behind, naming it Kal’Karik. However, as events preceded, the dwarves would splinter, and political developments in Thorik Braveaxe’s administration lead to the departure of the Irongut clan to the newly founded island nation of Holm, located off the coast of the elven isles. They moved into and rehabilitated the ruins of an ancient human with the aid of some gold addicted dwarven survivors from earlier colonization attempts. Grand King Thorik of Urguan reached out to the other powers in Asulon to forge new alliances, but was met with little interest. After Thorik Braveaxe’s then believed to be tragic death in 1361, the new Grand King, Broski Braveaxe, went to war with nearby Volvokrem. Other than Irongut’s departure, the other clans (Starbreaker, Braveaxe, Blackaxe, Ireheart, etc.) remained within to the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, though relations between Holm and Urguan were never particularly strained. Act II: Rise of an Empire (1362-1390) The Broken Kingdoms War After a series of skirmishes, the Sariants of Hanseti and the orcs of the War Uzg went to war with the Kingdom of Renatus in what came to be known as the Broken Kingdom War. Renatus has been incensed by orcish raids on Renatus itself, one which had almost captured King Eze’kiel Tarus, and had responded by raiding into Hanseti. Armies clashed, and after several inconclusive skirmishes with only temporary advantage being gained. Events turned when, about a decade into Asulon, Eze’kiel Tarus abdicated in favor of the Regent, Reynard Lycian, assisted by the Ashen Council, comprised of several of prominent figures remaining from the Phoenix Rebellion. The war between Renatus and its southern and northern adversaries culminated in the Battle of the Boot in 1364. The Boot had been constructed on a commanding hill overlooking the approach to the Kingdom of Renatus, and hosted formidable defenses. The teeming masses of the coalition arrayed against Renatus laid siege to the fortress as the troops inside hoped for aid or reinforcements. No such aid came, and Renatian forces were overwhelmed and massacred by an expanded coalition of Hanseti, Krugmar, the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, Alras and Salvus. Shortly following another Renatian defeat at Greenwall, in 1367, a man calling himself Godfrey Horen arrived on the scene, claiming direct descent from Horen himself and claimed the throne of Renatus. Reynard Lycian stepped aside in favor of Godfrey I, and the Kingdom’s nascent feudal structure was further developed, with land being divided among the noble families. Several of these families undertook an expedition to conquer neighboring Salvus, which successfully came under the control of House Hightower after Queen Dawn was burned as a witch by an angry mob of Salvian citizens. Godfrey also married Atrina Tarus, daughter of the former King, solidifying his line. Seventis had been founded during a series of low level wars between minor human and mixed race settlements in the area surrounding the Wilven Sanctuary, most notably Andromeda and Azar. After the conflicts ended, Seventis was built on a small piece of land, filling its teeming slums as quickly as they could be built. When the plague came to Asulon in 1387, Seventis was hardest hit, and in its weakened state, became a target for bandits, eventually surrendering to House Flay under the banner of Renatus. The plagues ripped through other major cities, and some, most notably Hanseti, sealed their borders in order to control the plague’s spread. It eventually exhausted itself, but not before killing hundreds. As Godfrey’s grip on the human realms strengthened, he turned to the last significant holdout in the South, Hanseti. Hanseti had been weakened by the assassination of Hochmeister Samuel Bealcrest, but his successor, Mirtok DeNurem, could be characterized as the Descendant’s greatest military mind since the first Hochmeister, Gaius Marius. War resumed between Hanseti and Renatus, and with the combined strength of Seventis and Salvus, Hanseti was beaten back. Mirtok brokered peace with Godfrey I, and Hanseti became a Duchy within the newly formed Holy Oren Empire in 1405, with Mirtok retaining control of the Sariants of the Teutonic Order as one of the world’s most effective fighting forces. The formation of the Holy Oren Empire can be seen as the culmination of a long and often convoluted series of events beginning with the Phoenix Rebellion. Godfrey sought to exert control over a disorganized and disheartened humanity, which had been shaken by the fall of Al’Khazar and the betrayal of Edmund Sheffield to the Undead. Humanity would now be united, by far the strongest power militarily and economically in Asulon. The true consequences of this would not be apparent until much later, but it can be safely said that the formation of the Holy Oren Empire is among the most important events in the history of the Descendants. Campaigns in the East and West Early Asulon proved to be a productive time for the Orcs of Krugmar, as government reformation under Rex Mogroka’Gorkil lead to the creation of the War Uzg. Clans Gorkil, Lur, Azog and Ugluk grew in prominence with the new warlords hailing from these clans participating in the Council of Wargoths. The orcs also established tributary agreements with various states, including Salvus, and the fearsome Krughai began raiding the Uzg’s less cooperative neighbors. Following the second Rex Klomp in 1378, Pok'Ugluk emerged as the new Rex, beating out the Wargoths of the three other clans. After the conclusion of the Fourth Wargoth Council, the Uzg launched a campaign in the northern regions of Asulon targeted at wiping out many of the small settlements dotting the wild lands. Clan Azog ended up in hot water with the leadership of the Uzg and was expelled from orc lands, with many of their members resettling to the south in Hanseti, taking up arms as Sariants of the Teutonic Order. The orcs and dwarves fought a series of inconclusive campaigns through the 1380s and 90s against each other, culminating in multiple battles over the strategically important and fabulously rich City of Alras, where the depopulated city exchanged hands almost daily. A strange tribe calling themselves the Subudai undertook several campaigns during this period, attacking many of the scattered settlements across the Alrasian sea in a remote part of the continent. Boria and Enismor were subdued along with a number of other hamlets and freeholdings, and the Subudai became known for their ruthlessness. The tribe went on to found the City State of Levanthus, lording over their conquered peoples without much attention from the rest of the world. They would later target Skravia, a sea port and merchant city located in the far north. House Flay, a rogue noble house of Renatus, continued its terror campaigns without royal sanction, and after Augustus Flay lead an attack on the peaceful human city of Mapleport, there was serious pressure from the new formed Empire to bring them in line. The Flays refused to yield, launching raids on nearly any settlement they could find, regardless of its political allegiance. Trouble among the Elves In Haelun’or, then still a new settlement that few believed would survive, debate swirled about the future of the mali’aheral. After considerable debate, Haelun’or closed its gates to the outside world. This lead to a rising wave of hostility in Malinor against what was viewed as a belief in racial supremacy from many within the walls Haelun’or. This decision would usher in a dark period in Haelun’or’s early days, as its increasing isolation made it a target from the orcs of Krugmar, with Rex Mogroka’Gorkil leading the Purge of Haelun’or against the city-state in 1373. The hastily armed high elven defenders held the orcish pillagers at bay, holding a line on the steps of the university. They fought on, exacting heavy casualties against the orcs, until Mogroka marshalled his best fighters for a final charge at the center, scattering the defenders in the tumult of screeching steel and war chants. The library was burned and city sacked, with the high elven bodies piled high among the once serene towers. The silver enclave just barely survived the catastrophic losses of the Purge, and intensely shaken by the experience, the high elves of Haelun’or turned even further in on themselves. Following this crisis, Ellir’siol took over many of the responsibility of Maheral, emerging as the leading voice among the mali’aheral in philosophy, diplomacy and statecraft. She was the first to formulate the maehr'sae hiylu'ehya, a comprehensive high elven school of philosophy which would come to dominate all facets of life within the Silver State of Haelun’or. The high elves of Haelun’or were unprepared for the crisis that would grip them with the rise to prominence of one mali’aheral, Nelecar. Adopting even more radical variants of Ellir’siol’s philosophy, he began pitting citizens of the Silver City against each other, beginning a campaign of murderous terror in order to erode the democratic order that had been established with the okarir system. While he was ultimately unsuccessful, several mali’aheral were brutally murdered, and the experience proved formative for the young city state. During the period, the studies and writing of Lucion Sullas began in earnest, and among his initiatives was the discovery of the Kharajyr, an intelligent feline race native to Asulon. Not much was known about them during initial encounters between the high elves and the kha, but cordial relations were established, beginning a storied relationship between the two often misunderstood cultures. The remaining majority of elves in Malinor, shortly after their arrival in Asulon, had to pack up and move to a new capital to the tree city of Normandor, which had been built on the coast of the elven isles by Prince Bravepaw. They had been driven from Elandriel by the dark Mori’Quessir, whose origins and motives remain as opaque as their underground citadels. In 1378, High Prince Haelphon stepped down, and High Princess Sythra was elected in his place. She undertook expansion of Normandor, and her government implemented serious labor reforms, with mixed success. Malinor and Haelun’or maintained fairly cordial relations, and with Holm, forged an alliance of mutual protection against the Mori’Quessir. This was solidified during a Mori’Quessir raid on Haelun’or, where Malinorian and Holmish troops arrived to aid the high elves. The united powers began a campaign against the Mori, driving them back into the dark forests at the center of the islands. Sythra’s signature policy proposals mostly consisted of government intervention in the economy of Malinor, spending the High Princedom’s treasury on social welfare programs. There were mixed signals from these initiatives, but Sythra remained popular as High Princess despite the fact that Malinor was slipping into a serious decline. However, she was one of the few leaders to take the threat of the plague to the Descendents seriously and initiated a lockdown of Malinor that saved countless lives. As High Princess Sythra continued her political reforms, she brought on new princes including longtime wood elf icon Ashur as well as the dark elf Khel Oussana. Tumult under the Mountain Holm’s existence was from the beginning fraught with conflict and violence. Laying far away from any powers other than the increasingly insular elves, the island nation became a target for raids from anyone and everyone looking for a fight. In this environment, Hiebe Irongut, the long time patriarch of the Irongut clan, stepped aside as leader, and Hogarth Irongut was selected to take his place. One would be hard pressed to select two dwarves more impactful upon the course of dwarven events and the long term vitality of the Irongut clan than these two figures, who despite their stature, loom large in the shadow of the Descendant’s history. Under Hogarth’s direction, the Irongut Clan returned to the Grand Kingdom of Urguan and settled in Kal’Dwain, south east of the new dwarven capital. Upon realization that dragons had invested Kal’Karik and were unlikely to give up their new turf, the Grand Kingdom of the Urguan moved to a new city, Khaz'A'Zharr (or simply Khaz). Dissatisfaction with the tenure of Grand King Broski Braveaxe grew, and an election was held to decide upon a new Grand King, with Stonghold emerging on top, but with such a narrow majority that there was still not agreement on who should take the throne. Breaking the deadlock, Kjell Ireheart was crowned in 1381 and began an intensive restructuring of dwarven society, including the consolidation of the clans at Mount Ire. Additionally, new clan, Goldhand, focused mainly on commercial activities, emerged. After years of discussion, the Blackaxe and Braveaxe Clans joined together to form the Grandaxe under Bazian Grandaxe. This would prove to be a momentous occasion, as the two clans combined rivaled Irongut for the title of largest and most prominent clan, seriously upending long accepted power structures with in the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. The realm of Aeroch Nor, consisting of mostly abandoned settlements, including Roseus Aquila and its surroundings, joined with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. These realms, ruled by Kyral Hightower, enlarged the territory of the Grand Kingdom if not its population. The dwarves also began referring to the Grand Kingdom as the Empire of Urguan, though it is unclear if Grand King Kjell Ireheart ever took the title of Emperor, and the name did not stick for very long. Act III: Picking up the Pace (1391-1413) First Steps of in Infant Empire The names first privy council of the Holy Oren Empire read as a who’s who of the major families in the coming decades and centuries. They include the Lord High Treasurer, Duke Patrick Denims, the Lord Grand Chamberlain, Count Throdo Therving, the Lord Grand Marshal, Marquess Thomas Chivay, Lord High Sheriff, Count Shas'O Kais Ishikawa, Lord Privy Seal, Marquess Godwein Stafyr and the Lord Grand Knight, Duke Uthor Silverblade. All of these men, along with the Duchess Christienne Valois, Archbishop James Hightower, Duke Mirtok DeNurem and Count Hadrien de Sarkozy who would, under the direction of Godfrey Horen, build the Holy Oren Empire into the most powerful nation that the Descendants have ever seen. It is difficult to understate the remarkable nature at how many extraordinarily competent individuals were collected under the banner of Godfrey of Horen, and none such Privy Council has since been convened. The Empire undertook a rebuilding of human realms. The capital of Salvus, Solace, was reconstructed under the initiative of House Hightower. Arethor, the Capitol and crownlands of Renatus were restructured, with the Emperor’s loyal vassals granted rewards for their services during and immediately following the unification of the human realms under the Imperial banner. Branborough and the Arcane Delvers Not exactly related topics, but some space ought to be given to these notable development. Branborough was the primary settlement of the Halflings in Asulon, and though Halfings are incapable of totally staying out of trouble, there was relatively less discord between the Halflings and the other Descendants “the big’uns” than is often the case due to the remoteness of Branborough. It was a pleasant place to visit, but one seldom did so due to the lack of things to do. At its peak, nearly thirty Halflings resided in Branborough, though one would be hard pressed to corral them all into a borough without a serious scuffle breaking out. On the other hand, the Arcane Delvers’ emergence on the scene was accompanied by shrieks and shouts of consternation. A guild dedicated to pursuit of the arcane, for better or worse, they upended the established Mages Guild by bringing magic to the masses. Several prominent individuals got their start with the Delvers including Polgrath the Mindlord, the wood elf Artimec and high elf Kalenz’Uradir. Checking in with the Orcs and Dwarves, Who are Still Fighting The War Uzg began several initiatives, including expanding peaceful trading relations under Yazgurten Grool’Gorkil’Azog. And though Gromgok’Gorkil had risen to Rex following a Rex Klomp, he was often absent, and then Wargoth Pok’Ugluk continued to exert influence. One of his priorities was the elimination of the so called “whitewash” orcs, who had chosen to live outside of the War Uzg. The Krughai conducted piercing raids throughout the early 1400s into several cities to seize these orcs and bring them to justice, outraging many of the nations of Asulon. This in part lead to a resumption of hostilities with Urguan, now under Grand King Bazian Grandaxe, who had taken the throne after Kjell Ireheart had stepped down in 1401 after more than two decades of competent rule. Bazian Grandaxe took the unusual step of almost entirely excluding the other clans (Irongut, Starbreaker, Goldhand, Ireheart and the newly formed Tunnelsmashers) from the Elder Council, which lead to severe blowback from some within Urguan. Still, the dwarves of Urguan turned to face the Orcs at Alras once again, and this time emerged with a decisive victory, driving the Orcs permanently from the city. The dwarves and orcs made peace after this, and minus a short military confrontation with the Holy Oren Empire, turned inwards. It was decided that the scattered Urguanites should return to the Holy City of Kal’Karik, and many did so under the direction of Hiebe Irongut in 1405. The return was only made possible by the dragons that had been inhabiting Kal’Karik having moved on, and when the city was reopened, the famed Valen Grandaxe was discovered alive, having survived for decades in the shadowy depths of the city. After Grand King Bazian Grandaxe’s abrupt departure, one of the most prominent dwarves for much of Aegis and Asulon, Hiebe Irongut, was crowned Grand King of Urguan in 1406. Some wondered why it had taken so long for who to many outsiders was the most recognizable dwarf to reach the highest seat of power in Urguan. Grand King Hiebe undertook massive civil reforms along with the rebuilding of Kal’Karik, and his tenure saw Urguan’s economy flourish. Similarly, Thore’Gorkil, a long time stalwart of the Gorkil Clan within the War Uzg, veteran of many campaigns, took over as Rex from Gromguk’Gorkil in 1408. The Emperor’s Silence: The Silverblades and Malinor Squabble of Armaluna, Friction between Norjun and the Adunians There is not a consensus explanation for why Emperor Godfrey fell into a period of protracted silence during some of the Holy Oren Empire’s formative years, but his absence was characterized by squabbling among the noble houses and foreign adventures by some of the more prominent ones. Armaluna, a small settlement located on an island midways between Arethor on the main continent and Normandor on the elven isles was the site of a contentious negotiation between Orenians, primarily under the authority of House Silverblade with the assistance on usually nonaligned guilds who, along with the War Uzg, were promised a share of the plunder. House Silverblade wished to acquire the remote outpost, which had been recently willed to the Holy Princedom of Malinor, and an armed host of the conspirators arrived at Normandor to negotiate with an extremely agitated High Princess Sythra for the acquisition of the islands. Malinor did not have the military force to protect the island, and after negotiations broke down, levied economic sanctions against the Holy Oren Empire. The Duchy of Norjun under House Norsem (the remnants of the noble families of Seventis, centered on the city of Rienna) took issue with House Elendil, which held the County of Ildon. House Elendil had settled in the Kingdom of Renatus with several clans of their fellow Adunians, a peculiar race of half elves. The ensuing war lead to the exile of House Norsem and eventual execution at the hand of the Inquisition and the elevation of House Valois in the Duchy of Auvergne to noble rank. The Auvergnians, as they would come to be known, had a distinct culture and language from the rest of the Empire, Auvergian. This period featured the first flowering of human culture beyond that of the whatever Oren’s capital city happened to be at that time, and noble houses rose from these cultural traditions to build their own power bases within the Empire. Valois, Stafyr and Ishikawa, along with the Kingdom of Hanseti fit each encouraged unique cultural traditions. In contrast, Silverblade, Denim-Therving and Chivay along with some of the other minor houses bound themselves close to the Emperor, as other than Silverblade, they lacked large followings outside of Arethor. With the rising power of the noble families, Oren’s now longstanding policy against adoption into noble houses was established in 1407 amidst a rash of ill advised adoptions. The storied Knightly Order of the White Rose was formed at the initiative of Peter and Thomas Chivay in 1404. An order in the vein of the White Rose, which included upholding the One True Faith and obedience to the Church as part of its mission, had never been seen among the Descendants. Wrapping Things Up Hostilities again commenced between Urguan and the War Uzg after a botched joint raid to rescue Princess Earinneal by the Urguan and Malinor, which had been subject to incessant raiding by orcish war parties. A punitive expedition against the War Uzg by Urguan, the Holy Oren Empire and Malinor was launched, but after an initial victory, elven and human involvement dropped off and the dwarves continued their private vendetta against the orcs. In 1407, High Princess Sythra Duskwind stepped down, and she soon after disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Prince Bravepaw was elected as the new High Prince, after he installed Oceas and his brother, Orlanden on the High Council. This was despite the efforts of Kyral Hightower, a famous elf who had become the reigning monarch of Salvus. Kyral unsuccessfully attempted to orchestrate the election of Princess Elene as High Princess. Elene would later resurface as the cultured elven wife of Braxis Silverblade, Duke of Furnstocke. In Haelun’or, a young mali’aheral with a pen and an overwhelming urge to use it began raising a stir among the elves. Kalenz Uradir, in somes view a model high elf, began publishing broadsides against well known high elves who he viewed to have issues with their purity. The Order of the White Rose also began the first of many terror campaigns against elves living within the Holy Oren Empire, clipping the ears of any elf they could lay their hands upon. White Roses focused their efforts particularly against the dark elves, massacring them whenever they could find them in sufficient number. Malinor’s protestations at the mistreatment of its expatriates fell on deaf ears, and long standing ties of friendship between Malinor and Renatus dissipated as the Holy Oren Empire grew in power, with the elves turning the Grand Kingdom of Urguan for alliance and friendship. Asulon came to an abrupt, though not necessarily unwelcome, end. Many of the Descendants agreed that the time to move on had come, and much of the continent had been blighted by ill fated settlements. In 1413, as rising waters claimed the cities of the Descendants, they set out once again by ship. A great storm overtook their armada, pushing them this way and that, driving them towards unknown shores. Act IV: Here We Go Again (1414-1423) Elysium The Descendants made landfall in Elysium in 1414, their ships having been battered about storms and in desperate need of repair and resupply. The island they found themselves landing upon was quite small, and the various nations soon staked out territory. The Holy Oren Empire, with by far the largest population, dominated most of the island with an immense tent camp. The War Uzg was split into two opposing forts, one loyal to Rex Sharku’Gorkil, the other composed mostly of Braduks and Ugluks opposed to his rule, with the Lur and Gorkil clans split between the two factions. Eventually, Targoth, Vrogak'Gorkil, known for his immense martial prowess, would emerge as Rex. His aggressive nature would set him on an irrevocable collision course with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. After dealing a crippling defeat to the dwarven legion at the kharajyr camp, Vrogak’Gorkil lead the orcs in a series of delaying maneuvers against the invading Urguan and Orenian armies. The orcs were eventually bottled up in the Gorkil fort, where they stood against a vastly numerically superior army. Modern siege tactics were first deployed at this battle, and the massed trebuchet fire eventually degraded the forts defenses so much that it collapsed in on itself. Accommodations across Elysium were tight, though nowhere was near as tight as what some might call a mountain but was in reality a moderately sized hill that contained the the Grand Kingdom of Urguan and the Holy Princedom of Malinor, which had reunited with Haelun’or. The new arrangement, negotiated by High Prince Bravepaw with Lucion Sullas and Kolyat Alfakyn, lead nearly every elf to live atop the Grand Kingdom’s mountain in cramped conditions, while a nearby exploding volcano rained down debris and displaced hordes of zombie pigmen and monstrous ghasts. This lead to one of the most contentious foreign policy fracas in the Descendants history when a group of high elves, at the urging of highly placed high elves within the Malinorian government stole the dwarves’ prized Golem Anvil with the assistance of Lord Tortek Silverfist. This would eventually lead to the deposing of High Prince Bravepaw during one of his prolonged absences, with the high elves maneuvering Kolyat into the High Prince’s post. The dwarves, restless under Hiebe, decided to place a newly returned Thorik Grandaxe on the throne. Early in his administration, Urguan set aside its grievances with the Holy Oren Empire and signed the Treaty of Aturial, which established an unbreakable blood pact with Emperor Godfrey Horen, permitting the dwarves to focus all of their efforts on the burgeoning conflict with the orcs. Casualties were high in the many clashes between the two nations, with Grand King Thorik eventually authorizing an invasion of the Orcs desert. This lead to a successful siege of the orcish fortress by the forces of Urguan and Oren. After the battle, Thorik Grandaxe stepped down as Grand King and Omithiel Strongbrow was elected to take the throne. Other than the strengthening of ties with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, Oren was mostly dormant for most of Elysium, with Emperor Godfrey only stirring to put down a revolt by a resurgent House Tarus in the breakaway Kingdom of Eyveror in 1416. As scout ships began to return, it was with great relief that many of the Descendants heard news of the new island chain, Kalos, which promised more breathing room for everyone. Kalos The Descendants’ flotilla arrived piecemeal at Kalos in 1417, with each race settling on its own island. The islands were arrayed in a rough circle around the larger island known as the Badlands, where no laws ruled. The orcs and dwarves continued to fight, with the conflict coming to a head in a a violent clash on the halfling island, where a numerically inferior orcish horde defeated the dwarven legion. Meanwhile, Emperor Godfrey set his sights on the elves of Malinor, who were occupied building an economically bustling settlement on their island. In the first of several ultimatums, Godfrey forced Malinor into concessions to the Holy Oren Empire. He had the backing of Urguan, which was still smarting from the theft of the Golem Anvil, and the new Grand King Thorin Grandaxe sent his own punitive expedition to extract reparations from High Prince Kolyat. Racial tensions also ratcheted up within Malinor, as the high elves built a wall around their cluster of towers across the bay from the main elven settlement, attempting to keep out their elven cousins. Finally, as repairs were finished on the Descendants’ fleet, they set sail for Anthos, not knowing what would await them in this strange land.
  6. ((It's been suggested that I begin with a little bit of OOC commentary, so as to not drop you all straight into it and overwhelm you. This work is the culmination of a lot of work over the last couple of years, with an intensification in the last few months. This is my attempt to give something back to LotC, a community I dearly love and has given me a lot since I joined in 2011. The server, the community and I have all grown together, and for that I am incredibly grateful. I have long considered the lack of a comprehensive rp history of our server to be a great misdeed, and have set about rectifying it. This is the first half of that larger work, covering the first three maps: Aegis, Asulon and Anthos. This is written from my character's perspective, though I hope I can be forgiven for taking certain liberties with research, much of which was done on the forums and wiki, in the interest of completeness and accuracy. I am sure I have gotten many things wrong throughout these first three volumes, but on the whole I judge them to be an adequate attempt at truly chronicling our server's history. I hope you all enjoy it, and don't feel the need to read it all at once. My hope for the future is that it is used as a reference and a resource for others, and hopefully it will prove approachable enough despite its length. Sincerely, VonEbs)) The Chronicle of the Seven Skies Dedication This is the product of decades if not centuries of work, both my own and of other scholars and historians. I thank them all for their tireless work, and to my many friends along the way. They they are too many to name in their entirety, I will attempt it here: to High Prince Native and the beautiful Soriouss, Indelwehn and Bircalin Stuart, Mylas and Blackthorne, Haelphon and Felore Nightstalker, Sythra Duskwind and the princes Lafthi Sylvari and Toren, Talias and Flefal, Amras'Tullum, the brilliant High Princess Titania Hawksong and Emberhard, Khel Oussana the brave and Sathoro Shadeleaf, Dwyn and Quavinir Tinuvial, Elindor, Kaun the Elder, Ellir'siol and Dio Astore, the great Bird Druid Elorna, whose friendship I did not deserve, Hiebe and the wise Hogarth Irongut, Bazian and the clever Dili Grandaxe, Dizzy Irongrinder, Dreek Ireheart the innocent, Pok'Ugluk, Brevias and Craotor'Lur, Uggg the ecoterrorist, the honorable Thore'Gorkil, my brother Grool'Gorkil'Azog, our brothers Maur and Erik'Azog, Hochmeister Gaius Marius, Mirtok DeNurem, Petyr Brandybuck, the Mushroom Druid Milo, who rescued me in a time of disaster, the Tiger Druid Alan, eater of steak, Archdruid Callax, the Duchess Christienne Valois, who sheltered my in exile, Godwyn Stafyr, King Heinrik I Carrion, Toveah Goldman the obese, Elene Silverblade, the cartographer Harold Winter, August and Lorina Blackmont, Albrecht Therving, Freya the Blind, Delaselva the Seer, Archmage Ambros, Salamandra, the corruptible Vardak, Bili Bob the tater Lord and the tireless scholar and libarian Cerlos. Without you, many who are gone and others who persist, none of this would be possible. Foreword Under Seven Skys have the Descendants lived and died. Under Seven Skys have we toiled, built up great cities and great civilizations, planted crops and watched our children grow. Aegis, Asulon, Anthos, Athera, Vailor, Axios and Atlas. Our flight across these continents and realms has been experienced but not yet chronicled, and it has fallen to the author to take up this great task. The author has played a role in this story, as have all the reader, and it is not just the author's story, but all of the Descendants' story. It is long, as the Seven Skys are not a simple in any way, the Descendants less so. The Descendants's story begins with the First Sky, Aegis, but there are several topics that require scholarly attention before embarking on that great journey. Read them if desired, but understanding of them is not necessary to explore the Descendants' history. On the Wandering Wizard and other Topics The earliest and most widely cited accounts from Aegis come from the personal writings of the Wandering Wizard. This being, thought by many to be one of the famed Aengul, had unparalleled skill in the arcane arts. He used these marvelous abilities to assist the Descendants, delivering miracles ranging in scale from lifting a bucket from a broken well in Serpent’s Ridge to battling monstrous hordes sent by the Undead Necromancers. Availer, as he was known to the elves, was revered by all who stood in the light and despised by those cloaked in shadow. His most famous tome, Chronicles of the Ancient History, as transcribed by the Mage Baruk Ghaz, begins with a thrumming description of the creation of the world. Chronicles relays that the Creator formed from the Void so that it could become a theater, a testing ground of sorts for those He chose to create. Availer directly refers to the Creator by the name “the Merciful Creator of the Seven Skys.” There has long been much speculation over what this exactly means, what the Seven Skys are. Some, such as the high elves, dismiss it is the foolish writings of an old, addled man, who perhaps had some insignificant talents with magic. Others argue that the Descendants are blessed, or, alternatively, cursed, to inhabit is the seven skys, while other argue it is merely another way to speak of the heavens and cosmos. The current doctrine of the Church of the One True Faith outlines that the Creator is God, and that the Seven Skys are the various planes of the afterlife where both humans and non-human are sent following their deaths. The dark elf scholar Dauth Sundavar, in his analysis of Chronicles and The Holy Scrolls of the Church of the One True Faith Historiography, dismisses the Chronicles as religious propaganda designed by the establishment of the Canonist faith. He, however ignores or was ignorant of the existence of the Wandering Wizard and his confirmation of authorship of the Chronicles, and that the Ancient History was recorded during the acknowledged nadir of the Canonist faith. However, it is undeniable that The Holy Scrolls reflect the Chronicles. The Canonists attribute the Holy Scrolls to God’s Prophet, Horen, though some suspect that their authorship is much more recent. Chronicles describes the story of the first man and woman, who bore four sons, Malin, the eldest, along with Krug, Horen, and Urguan. According the Chronicles, the four descendent races came into being; the elves of Malinor as the eldest race, and the dwarves the youngest. The four races lived in peace for centuries, until Iblees, one of the Daemon, the counterparts to the holy Aengul, planted seeds of corruption in the hearts of the four brothers and their peoples, setting them up for ultimate betrayal. All but Krug succumbed to the seduction of this exiled Daemon, and all the Descendants would suffer for their personal failing. After a fierce and incredibly destructive thirty year battle with Krug and his brothers, Iblees was only defeated through divine intervention. The Creator dispatched a legion of Aenguls and Daemons from the Seven Skys and defeated his hordes and bound him in the Void. However, before the binding completed, Iblees cast terrible curses upon each of the legendary Brothers and their Descendants: to Malin, silent forests devoid of children, to Krug, incredible lust for the glory of battle and the blood of their foes, to Urguan, breathtaking greed and miserable short stature, and to Horen, that his children’s flames would be snuffed out in a blink of an eye. A great darkness descended over the land then, and there was tearing at hair and rending of garments. However, one of the Aengul soldiers, thought to be Aeriel, stepped forward, and though unable to undo the great evil already done, he offered gifts: Long life and serenity to the Elves, Honor to the Orcs, great strength of mind and body to the Dwarves, and the vague promise of a chance to explore the Seven Skys to Humanity. With a final sounding of horns, the great army vanished to the Seven Skys. The Great Collapse The so called “Great Collapse” is heavily debated among historical scholars. The only known fragment directly referring to the Great Collapse is within dwarven records, and it says only that Emperor Thorngar Ironborn of the Khorvad Empire attempted to destroy all knowledge of the Kingdom of Urguan. The “fragment of Urguan” was brought together by the future dwarven King, Simmpa. The siege Kal’Urguan by the dwarven rebels would end with Thorngar’s death in a duel with Simmpa. Beyond this fragment, there is overwhelming evidence that some type of cataclysmic event suddenly decimated all of the cultures of Aegis, destroying over a thousand years of records and histories. A great wealth of knowledge was lost, far too little preserved by the relatively meagre efforts by a handful of dedicated elves. Orcish mythology seems to have been passed down orally through war chants, sung on the eve of battle, but it is notably lacking in realistic accounts of the early days of the Descendants. The High Prince of Malinor and the Story of Laurelin makes vague references to a time called the “First Age,” referring to Laurelin as being founded by the remains of a small wood elven colony at the beginning of the Second Age, which appears to have started before 1300, though there are no elven records predating 1301. This lends further evidence to the existence of a cataclysm, though, one must imagine it had some sort of effect on the memories of those that survived it, as none have ever been able to speak or write of what happened. Near the end of the Descendant’s time in Aegis, five scrolls, or more appropriately, fragments, were discovered. They originated in the early days of the world, but they offered little new insight into those early days; indeed, if anything, they begged more questions than answers. Dwarven scholars, including the famed King of Urguan Bazian Grandaxe, hypothesized on the period before our current era, and it was Bazian that came up with the term the “Great Collapse”, which has been adopted by most other serious historical scholars. Despite the great amount of quills broken over the topic, there is not firmly established consensus on the particulars of the Collapse, and despite rumors of recovered texts, the mystery remains. Hypothesis on the Great Collapse In the following volumes, certain claims will be referenced by various groups that are of dubious historical authenticity. This apocrypha, the lore of the various Descendant races, claims to have knowledge of events prior to the Great Collapse. Few enough of us are left who drew breath in the year 1300, but those of us who are still here can confirm that none of us remember any events prior to the unknown event. For the most part, I set the veracity of these claims aside as fundamentally unimportant, as whether the various groups or the Descendants and large believe these things to be true is perhaps more relevant to chronicling their experiences. Still, as so many have offered their opinions on events prior to the Great Collapse, citing fragmentary knowledge and evidence of often dubious origin, which conveniently forwards their own narrow interest, I will take this opportunity to offer my own hypothesis. The continent of Aegis in the year 1300 was a beautiful realm, unscarred by the Descendants habitation. The major cities were little more than small towns at the outset, and none of them appeared to be more than a decade old. As the Cloud Temple Monks revived more and more of the Descendants, these cities filled and were expanded, and eventually settlements dotted the entirety of the continent. Still, we must return to the fact that these settlements did not exist prior to 1300, and that Aegis was for all intents and purposes untouched, a virgin continent. The story of the Descendants thus far has been one long journey, drifting from place to place, sheltering for a while before inevitably moving on. Most of us mark the beginning of this journey at the conclusion of our time in Aegis, as Iblees destroyed the continent and we escaped through a portal to the Verge. However, upon our arrival in Asulon, we discovered numerous ruins and sites featuring extinct civilizations in Asulon. The walls of Arethor, the dwarven warrens of Deepholm, and the high elven college at Haelun’or were just a few. Each had some evidence of those beings that lived there, and these beings were remarkably similar to the Descendants. In each continent that we have found ourselves occupying since, in both the realms of Eos and Aos, we have found similar signs of past habitation, the signs of long extinct civilizations. One must return again to the year 1300, when the Descendants began stepping out of the Cloud Temple into a strange, unknown, virgin continent. What evidence do we have that the Descendants are native to Aegis? The sheer lack of evidence, minus the Chronicles of the Ancient History, and indeed, the preponderance of evidence that the Descendants have lived on many other continents, points to one terrifying possibility: Aegis was just the latest stop on the Descendants journey. That we had come from another continent before that, and another continent before that, possibly one we have occupied since, and that the Descendants are trapped in a never ending journal from one realm to another. That we, during the earliest period of our settlement of Aegis, either decided to or were forced into erasing all memories of our origins and our past journeys. There are only the words of the Wandering Wizard, in the Chronicles, offering testimony against this hypothesis, as he, remarkably, was the only being who appeared to have in intact memory. And even he claims that the “World was not created in play or for fun, but as a theater for the inhabitants of the World to be tested in.” Now, the author realizes that this is a radical proposition, and does not expect that these questions will be settled here and now. This never ending journey that the Descendents find themselves, leaving crumbling ruins and fragments of ourselves behind, seems offer at least some meagre evidence in support the before stated hypothesis, but more debate would be welcome, and even encouraged. The First Sky Act I: Before Kal’Bryst(Unknown-1302) Having addressed various topics including the origins of the known universe and the lack of record predating 1300, let us turn now to the story of the Descendants, as they lived and died on the continent of Aegis. The four nations of the Descendants, the Holy Princedom of Malinor Malinor, Krugmar, the Kingdom of Urguan and the Kingdom of Oren, were all located along a pair of roads stretching from Al’Khazar in the North to the Cloud Temple in the South. The northern road was known as the King’s Road, and the vast majority of activity in Aegis occured along this thoroughfare, and it was connected to the Prince’s Road, which terminated at Laurelin southwest of the Cloud Temple. Malinor The Holy Princedom of Malinor, along with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, both great nations now buried, had the most thorough records of the early period of Aegis, and thus, have the easiest histories to reconstruct with any degree of accuracy. High Prince Native and Prince Toren's accounts of the early days after the founding of Laurelin in the early 1300s or late 1200s are the oldest surviving records. Laurelin was founded amongst the trees of an ancient forest near south of the Cloud Temple, and it was the unrivaled jewel of the Holy Princedom of Malinor. Some say that the souls of all elves long to once again shelter under the graceful branches of the elder trees of Laurelin. High Prince Native, by all accounts, ruled with a fair, kind, and skilled hand, promoting competent elves to assist him in governance. The first Council was made up of several notable elves, including Prince Toren the Farmer and Prince Talion the Merchant. The original guard force of Malinor were the Sentinels, headed by Prince Flefal, later to be known as the Traitor. The druidic order resided in the deep reaches of Laurelin, and was always a center of mischief under the guidance of Wayward Druid Resperin. Druidic texts call this period the first Restoration of the Druids, but what they were restored from remains unclear. As their population swelled with increasing numbers of elves returning to Laurelin, Malinor expanded from Laurelin first to the picturesque mining town of Ravenhold and then to the villages of Serpent's Ridge and Elvindale. Prince Mylas also constructed Malin’s Sister, later referred to as the Sister City, a suburb of Laurelin. High Prince Native and Prince Flefal, the Princedom’s engineer, took on expanding Laurelin itself, adding several districts to the original city. All of the elves, regardless of race, lived in relative harmony. Prince Flefal, an engineer, constructed a railway between Laurelin and Ravenhold. The completion of The Gauntlet is perhaps the most significant event of this era. Warriors and acrobats from all the realms flocked to Laurelin to try their hand at the perilous obstacle course, packing the coffers of the Holy Princedom of Malinor in the process. The elves prospered, blissfully unaware of the horrors to come. Urguan Meanwhile, King Simmpa had consolidated his control of the dwarven clans and they too expanded to new holds. He created a High Council, later known as the King’s Council or the Council of Lords, to help him rule, filling it with Lords from the clan nobles. Kal'Urguan grew large, and new cities such as mountain hold of Kal'Bryst and the floating village of Kal'Rog sprung up, established by entrepreneuring dwarves. In the second year of his reign, 1302, Simmpa fell ill, and he appointed Charles Grimlie as overseer. King Charles later took the throne and ruled with an iron first, crushing all dissent within the Kingdom of Urguan as it expanded. Hiebe Irongut founded the Dwarven Legion during King Charles’ reign, and the Dwarven Legion would grow to be one of the fiercest fighting forces in Aegis. Additionally, the sleepy merchant town of Kal’Alras is founded by Rasun and others, though it would be several years before events came to a head there. Beyond this, the dwarves began to accumulate their considerable wealth in both minas and precious metals, enough to match all the other nations of Aegis combined. Oren It is relatively well known that the first King of Oren, Daniel Horen, later known as Saint Daniel, established the Mountain City, Al’Khazar, before 1300. His rule was fair if not incredibly successful, and Oren expanded out from the capital northwards. The Mages Guild, under Archmage Slayer, established their first tower on the outskirts of Al’Khazar, and Archmage Ambros was a great ally of Saint Daniel. It was in 1301 that his Senchesel and Lord of Winterfell, Pampo Perea, staged a coup in Al’Khazar and overthrew King Daniel, crowning himself King of all Oren, which consisted of the capital of Al’Khazar along with the towns of Alstion, Snowy Fields, the Whispering Islands and Winterfell. According to modern interpretations from Imperial sources, this brought an end to the first Horen line. Pampo Perea formed a Council to assist him in the administration of the growing Kingdom. He would go on to marry the baker Dawn in 1302 following a widely followed romance, giving Oren a queen, and they had a son, Brett. Peace reigned throughout human lands during this early period as the Orenian Guard formed around leaders Lord Haelphon, a half elf, and Vardak. A Cathedral was constructed in central Al’Khazar, with Agnub of now storied Hightower line serving as its Archbishop. To the south of Al’Khazar, another human town was founded, the desert oasis of Kramaroe, which sprung up from an inn on North Road. Among the many notable residents of this storied town was Delaselva the Seer, and it for a time served as the base of the dwarven Blackaxe Clan. Far to the west, the halflings, under the leadership Petyr Brandybuck, established the pastoral village of Dunwood. These two settlements were primarily comprised of humans but were not directly administered by the Kingdom of Oren. Krugmar The uruks of Krugmar established their capital of Sanjezel in the South, near the Cloud Temple of Aegis and the forests of Malinor. Other notable towns established under the first Rex, Tyther, were the great City of Sanhar and the Nomad Village. Shamanism began to take it’s roots during this period. The first crisis for the orcs was the reappearance of Or’ta, a monumental figure from the renowned Clan Wars. He launched devastating attacks on Sanhar, sacking it several times. He was eventually defeated by a warband lead by Craotor’Lur, but notably absent during these events was Tythus. Discontent began to spread among the orcs, especially Mogroka’Gorkil and Gorefang. Also to appear during this period was the ecoterrorist Uggg, who staged many protests against various construction projects that were destroying the natural beauty of Aegis. Act II: The Undead Invasion of the North(1303-1336) The Immolation of Kal’Bryst Why the Undead chose the North as the focus of their initial onslaught is a matter of speculation, but regardless, the North bore the brunt of the attack. The first battle was at the now famed city of Kal’Bryst, then a backwater dwarven outpost in the North. Nothing could prepare the residents for the hell that would reign down on them that fateful night in 1303 when the relentless Undead hordes fell upon their helpless village. The resident dwarves were slaughtered, and by the time a call for aid was received by the peoples of Aegis, the city was being consumed by unnatural flame. Still, an army was marshalled and rode north, lead by the Wandering Wizard. The dwarven party was the first to arrive, and after a brief skirmish with the previously unknown enemy in which they suffered heavy casualties, they withdrew with whatever survivors they could find to the forward camp set up by Availer. As orcs, elves, humans and dwarves gathered for a counterattack, it became clear that this menace was like none other faced by the Descendants. Hordes of reanimated and decaying corpses milled about the city, falling upon any living thing. And pale skeletal archers kept sentry, ready to lose a flight of arrows at any that might challenge them. These horrors were small in comparison to the abominations found in the undead themselves; neither living nor dead, their kept their grotesque faces and bodies shrouded in hoods so that all that could be seen were two soulless eyes. The full extent of their dark magic and necromancy was not known at the time, but it would soon become startlingly clear that the Descendants stood little match. A call went forth through the assembled armies that it was time for a great counterattack. The largest army ever assembled charged forth under the command of the Wandering Wizard. Unspeakable spells and boiling firebolts exploded through their ranks as they clashed with the hordes of skeletons and zombies, and warriors of all races fell in droves. The armies clashed back and forth, neither gaining the advantage, until a giant stomped and hammered a path through the Descendant’s ranks, and the great army wavered, almost breaking. But then, High Prince Native of Malinor and his elven archers appeared, bringing the giant down with a single volley of arrows, turning the battle against the Undead Necromancers. The archmages of the Mages Guild cleared a path to the city, and the great army charged through, entering bitter street fighting against the necromancers and what was left of their horde. Towers exploded as the Undead threw every incantation they had against the Descendants, but it was all in vain as each Necromancer was cornered and cut down. The price of victory was extraordinarily high, and Kal’Bryst had to be abandoned, for the Undead’s corruption was too much for any living being to tolerate. In the wake of the battle, still little was known of the Undead, but one name was on every tongue in Aegis: Iblees. Interregnum Celebrating their victory, the Descendants did not know that their respite would be brief. This was especially the case for the Kingdom of Oren. From their terrible obsidion fortress, Unk, the Undead struck out through Oren’s Northern realms, burning the towns of Alstion and Winterfell, cutting a path of destruction south. Corpses decomposed in the streets as a darkness settled over the human lands, and the Prophet Rott arrived under the guise of the Novelist in Oren’s capital, Al’Khazar. He spread chaos and distress through the human realm, preparing it for swift Undead annexation. In Malinor, the treachery of Prince Flefal, now known alternatively as Mayctor or simply The Traitor, became apparent. He had corrupted many of the Sentinels, and thus, a new guard force was created under Commander Blackthorn, the Wardens of Malinor. The Wards prepared to march north to confront the Undead, but High Prince Native held them back, concerned that the Undead hordes would attack the lightly defended sacred forests and glades of Malinor. Also in the South, the orcs and dwarves fought a short war for unknown reasons, known simply as as the Caravan War. There were several battles in orcish lands, most ending in the orcs rebuffing dwarven war parties. The war ended inconclusively, with neither side making any land gains. King Charles Grimlie, driven mad by the corruption of the undead, then waged an insane war against Oren. Discontent and unrest spread throughout Urguan, with the Grandaxe clan rending in two while Kal’Alras declared its independence. King Charles Grimlie was forced to resign by his council, and King Belin “The Industrious” was crowned. It was during this brief respite that the the Ascended Sages themselves to the Descendants. They were of all races and had been chosen by the Aengul Aeriel to the fight Iblees and his Undead generals. They established both the United Aegis Coalition, which was an alliance of all the nations and guilds in Aegis, along with the city of Haven, far to the west of Urguan. Pampo and Edmund As Undead forces marshalled on Oren’s northern border, a call for aid was sent South, to the armies of the Elves, Dwarves, and Uruks. The Wardens of Malinor set out, but before aid could arrive, an assault was launched in the year 1304 on Al’Khazar. In the initial hours of the battle, the Undead Overseer was struck down by courageous heroes. However, through the use of Iblees’ dark magics, he rose again with even more dark power. The Orenian guard was slowly pushed back to the royal palace while the Undead Necromancers bombarded the city. The palace was besieged for hours as the guard, commanded by King Perea personally, fought a fierce defense of the crumbling bastion. This bought precious time for the civilian population to evacuate, but just as the armies from the South were to arrive, the undead broke through the Orenian lines. The Seven Skys screamed as the Overlord and King Pampo Perea clashed in the throne room, and they wept when King Perea was cut down, his life snuffed out by the undead’s dark power. As the armies of Oren wailed at the loss of their King, a flash of brilliant light shattered the darkness as the Wandering Wizard engaged the Prophet and the Overseer. Aegis shook violently as their deadly duel raged, and as the palace crumbled, Availer obliterated both of the necromancers. The victory would prove temporary, as the Prophet and Overlord would rise from the Nether again, but it bougt much needed time for humanity to rebuild Al’Khazar and crown their new King, Edmund Sheffield. Alstion and Snowy Fields The people of Oren rallied to their King, and set their eyes North, to rebuild Winterfell and Alstion and fortify the town of Snowy Field. As Oren reorganized internally and Edmund Sheffield married his Queen, Ivrae, the Undead launched new assaults from the North. The battle for Snowy Fields was both long and fierce, but it finally fell in 1308. The Undead used the keep as their staging ground for their decade long siege of Alstion. The armies of Aegis sent reinforcements north to hold Alstion at all costs, and the costs were dear. Archmage Freya commanded the defenders in many of their sallies against the Undead in Snowy Fields, of which there were dozens of skirmishes that set the Undead back considerably. Finally, enough forces were concentrated in Alstion that an expeditionary force went North to discover the origin of the Undead assaults, and the obsidian fortress of Unk was discovered. It was besieged several times before the Sages arrived to finally breach the walls after an inexplicable incident involving cake. Alstion, however, would fall soon after in 1314. It was wiped off the face of Aegis by a blizzard created by the darkest of magics. With it’s fall, the Undead were no longer hemmed in the North, and struck out towards what they believed was the undefended South. Many of the former residents of Alstion and Snowyfield established the small but well defended town of Talun far to the northeast of Al’Khazar, but it was never attacked by the Undead. To The South In the South, life continued much as before the Undead invasion. High Prince Native married Sorrius at the Sister City, and Princesses Indelwehn and Mylas ascended to the High Council. The Wardens grew in strength, expanding and fortifying their base outside of Laurelin as well as Laurelin and Ravenhold’s defenses. However, as the elves prospered, discontent reigned among the orcs as an uprising against Rex Tythus began. It was lead by Gorefang and Mogroka’Gorkil who besieged Sanjezel to attempt to dethrone Tythus. However, before the battle was even won, Gorefang and Mogroka would klomp to decide who would challenge Tythus for Rex, and though the bout of fists and tooth lasted for four days, neither emerged the victor, as both collapsed in exhaustion. Then, as the two sides began to prepare for a civil war, the Wandering Wizard appeared, and in an appeal to the orcs, asked that they form a government together. Thus, it was decided that both would rule Krugmar as Warlords. They then marched into Sanjezel and challenged Rex Tythus together, and with his death, the revolt came to an end. Gorefang would later depart for parts unknown, leaving Mogroka to become Rex. After the Wardens of Malinor and Krughai of Krugmar returned to the South from Al’Khazar, it became apparent that a new Undead outpost had been established by Wrath. Wrath was running a slave operation out of the bastion, named Wrath’s Clutch, and numerous men and women were captured and tortured there. It was located just South of Alras, but the Alrasians refused to do much of anything to dislodge Wrath and his gang. Numerous attempts were made to destroy the fortress by Malinor, Urguan, and Krugmar, to no avail, but the elves and orcs were soon distracted by an all out Undead assault on the Orcish capital of Sanjezel in the year 1316. As the Undead hordes neared the great wall protecting Sanjezel, the orcs dug in, preparing for a siege. The Undead Necromancers appeared at the front of their army and began launching gigantic fireballs at the wall, which crashed against the sandstone, mud and brick. After a sustained barrage, gaps began appearing, and zombies flooded into the opening and skeletons sniped at the orcish defenders. Before the battle could turn against the orcs, however, a great cry was heard from the West as the armies of Malinor rushed out of the forest, Princess Indelwehn and High Princess Soriuss at their head. Cries of “The elves are coming!” rang across the desert, and as the elven warriors took their positions in the wall, Mogroka and Princess Indelwehn met to plan the counterattack. The Wardens set up a firing line along the openings torn by the Undead in the orcish wall as the orcs and others, aided by the Ascended, charged forward to meet the Undead. The battle raged for an hour until the elves’ quivers were depleted, and as one they rushed forward, blades gleaming from the fires that raged through the orcish desert. With the elven reinforcements, the orcs overwhelmed the Undead, and the Battle of Sanjezel was won. The great victory solidified the friendship between the orcs and elves, and the alliance between Malinor and Krugmar, the Malin-Krug Pact, was agreed to between High Prince Native and Rex Mogroka’Gorkil following the battle. The Verge The Verge was a realm that the Descendants entered in 1320. It was a strange and nearly inhospitable place, overrun with spiders and slimes. Alrasian, Orenian, and Dwarven adventurers banded together in Tazarak, a small refuge from the chaos that reigned in Verge. The elves established two settlements, and the orcs, one, but the Verge was such an awful place that eventually even Tazarak became a ghost town as the residents would rather face Undead assaults over constant siege by slimes. Betrayals Adding fuel to speculation of Undead scheming, it was revealed that the Tazarak Alliance’s leaders were in league with the Undead, with both King Algrim of Urguan, who had been crowned after King Belin’s death, and King Edmund Sheffield of Oren being revealed as Undead, along with King Syrio of Alras widely known as having trading ties with the denizens of the Nether. A mob hunted down King Algrim in 1323 after his oaths to Iblees were overheard by an elf, and he was captured during the human and orc skirmish in the ruins of Kramaroe. After the short reign of King Gotrek, a War Council of sage dwarves is set up to rule the nation in the stead of a King. King Edmund’s betrayal, in 1321, however, was a particularly hard blow for the Descendants, as after he was accused of treachery, he transformed into an Undead and ate his wife Ivrae in front of many Orenians. He escaped with his son, Enor, in tow. Oren then descended into chaos. Two major factions emerged; one to crown Dawn Perea, owner of the famous Dawn’s Bakeries and widow of King Pampo Perea, and the other to crown Saint Daniel, who had returned from his travels. Neither would seize the throne, however, as Prince Enor returned from the Nether seemingly unharmed, and was placed upon the throne. Relative peace returned to the Orenian realms, but discontent and plans of rebellion boiled beneath the surface as the people chafed under King Enor’s reign, Included by some in the list of betrayals is that of the Sages of Aeriel, who departed Aegis and abandoned the Descendants to their fate at the hands of Iblees in 1322. They took with them the city of Haven in the West and the fortress of Aeriel in the North. Wrath’s Clutch and Fort Fairleaf After the Dwarves and Elves collaborated in the destruction of an Undead Keep in construction South of Laurelin, they decided to finally do something about Wrath’s Clutch. Both the Wardens and Legion build fortresses outside of the Clutch, and besieged the fortress. It fell after a large assault involving the efforts of both armies; the elves with their bows and the dwarves with their war-axes. With the slaver and necromancer Wrath finally vanquished from the South, some elves began celebrating and boasting of how they had single handedly defeated Wrath. The Dwarves took offense at this, and the Legion decided to besiege for Fairleaf, the elven fortress outside the Clutch, and demanded it be torn down. It nearly came to blows, as Prince Quazar the Wardens desired war with the dwarves, but a message from Native carried by Princess Indelwehn arrived ordering the Wardens back to Malinor. They complied, and the dwarves tore down Fort Fairleaf. The incident left bitter tastes in both nation’s mouths, and threw cold water on their warming relationship. It was during this crisis that Lirinya, owner of the Treetop inn, was raised to the High Council to replace Princess Ariana. The Fall of Kramaroe The Undead, infuriated by their loss at Sanjezel, struck out at the relatively undefended town of Kramaroe in 1323. It burned quickly, though the Undead did not claim the town as their own. Instead, after a brief infestation by bandits in which the once proud town became known as Sunspear, it was claimed by both Oren and Krugmar. After a drawn out battle between the Orenian Guard and a few orcs, the humans claimed victory, and began transforming the town into the feudal holding of Galahar, which would provide grain and other crops to a nearly surrounded Al’Khazar, as well as securing the route to the Whispering Isles, another Orenian settlement ruled by Brett Perea, the orphaned son of Pampo Perea. The Whispering Isles was also the home of the Holmes Detective Agency, a guild which was dedicated to solving crimes throughout Aegis, as well as the original branch of the Orenian Orthodox church. Act III: Iblees Advances (1336-1350) The Great War The Great War began with a series of skirmishes between the Orcs and Dwarves outside of Sanjezel, and after witnessing one these skirmishes, Grand Councillor Valen Grandaxe prepared the Legion for war. During this period, the Kingdom of Urguan was reformed into the Grand Kingdom of Urguan under its first Grand King, Thorik Grandaxe. The Wardens of Malinor aid their orcish allies, and a secret human-dwarven alliance is revealed when Oren begins to aid Urguan. Rex Mogroka’Gorkil of Krugmar and Prince Mylas of the Holy Princedom of Malinor, accompanied by Hochmeister Gaius Marius, marched on the capital of the Grand Kingdom of Urguan, Kal’Urguan, in 1336. Gaius Marius and his Teutonic Order had made a name for themselves in recent years by attacking the minor guilds of Aegis, destroying their fortresses and assimilating many of their members, and they grew to the size of a small nation, based out of the heavily fortified city of Nuremberg. Gaius saw Oren as corrupt, and was determined to see it in new hands. It is suspected by many that it was all under the machinations of the Undead, in a very successful attempt to distract and weaken the Descendants in order to disrupt their response to a major assault. The Great War had many small battles, and Gaius Marius and his Teutonic Order, aided at times by Blackaxe Dwarves, the Wardens of Malinor, and the Krughai of Krugmar, attacked Al’Khazar on five separate occasions. Though at least two of these attacks succeeded in defeating the Orenian Guard, none of the victories were substantial enough to unseat King Edmund Sheffield. The most noteworthy of the assaults involved both the Teutons entering Al’Khazar through the sewer system and the entrance in the basement of the Therving Tavern as well as the assault where Gaius and the Teutons stole robes from the Temple Monks and used those disguises to infiltrate Oren and corner King Edmund Sheffield. The Defeat of the Wandering Wizard Few remarked upon the Wandering Wizard’s protracted absences, but the Descendants took notice when in 1336 he sent out a call for aid in transporting three artifacts to the Cloud Temple. The Undead launched wave after vicious wave against him and the armies that had heard his call, and in the end, it was too much in the open ground, and the Wandering Wizard and his defenders fell, the armies scattered throughout the land. Panic began to set in for many when it was revealed the artifacts that were stolen by the Undead were in fact drake eggs, and that Iblees would be able to use his dark magics in the Nether to corrupt and shape the drakes. Changes in Malinor It started rather subtly. First, warden recruits were withdrawn from Laurelin's gatehouse. Then, druidic officials were found murdered, which lead to a cycle of killings in Malinor which the Wardens refused to investigate. Ebs and Sythra, a new arrival in Laurelin, investigated further, and discovered Prince Quazar, who had become Commander of the Wardens after Blackthorne’s disappearance, was plotting treason. The pair went to Indelwehn, and she went to Native and the High Council. The night before the coup was to occur, the Wardens attempted to assassinate the High Prince. The attempt was foiled, High Prince Native proceeded to disband the Wardens. Sythra was appointed to head the new guard, the Vanguard, which would be permanently based in Laurelin. The Bearded Elf then announced that he was departing Malinor, stepping down from High Prince. Many elves present were overcome with grief and sorrow. The High Prince’s final act as High Prince of the Holy Princedom of Malinor was to appoint Ebs as Prince of Malinor. Immediately, the first election for High Prince in memory was called. Princes Lafthi, Toren, and Ebs with Princesses Indelwehn and Lirinya convened in secret in Lafthi's treetop home in downtown Laurelin. After two rounds of voting, Indelwehn was elected High Princess of Malinor. A new age was dawning on Malinor, and none could have possibly realized that the undiscovered taint that lay hidden in the new High Princess would influence the course of the nation. The Fall of Al’Khazar and Retreat from the North Historians agree that Al’Khazar was turning point in the war with the Undead, and that it marked the beginning of the end of the nations of Aegis. As Enor’s grip on the throne loosened and open talk of rebellion became common, but before the flame of revolt was lit, the Undead launched an all out assault in 1437. The assault on the human capital was comprised of over twenty Necromancers, an unthinkable number of malevolent beings. The undead forces were simply too much for the Orenians to hold back, and before aid could arrive from the south, the battle was over. The once great city of Al’Khazar lay in ruins, utterly decimated and poisoned by the Undead’s latest weapon, miasma. The people of Oren scattered, some heading North to the fortified town of Winterfell, ruled by Ser Robin Drake, while other scattered South to Galahar and the Whispering Isles. The Whispering Isles would later sink beneath the waves as the center of Orenian culture solidified in Galahar, which quickly underwent considerable fortification. King Enor disappeared during the confusion following Al’Khazar’s fall, with Hawk Whitestorm reconstituting the Orenian government in Galahar. Initially, there was a token effort by Oren to hold its remaining northern territories, but when it became clear there was not even a usable road to Winterfell, the situation deteriorated quickly. Crimson Vale, New Alstion, Talun, and finally Winterfell were all destroyed by the Undead in a matter of days as what few people remained in the North retreated southwards. Phoenix Rebellion It is little known that the Phoenix Rebellion (also known as the Phoenix Revolution) began as a plot to blow up the Al’Khazar sewers in order incapacitate the Orenian Guard and overthrow King Enor Sheffield. This plan was scrapped following the destruction of Al’Khazar at the hands of the Undead, but revolutionary sentiment continued to stir. When King Enor returned to Aegis after a year of captivity in the Nether, he attempted to dissolve the Council that was governing the remaining fragments of Oren from Galahar. This lead to fierce accusations of Undead corruption and condemnations of Enor’s past mistakes and misrule. Criticism focused on the neglect of Al’Khazar’s defenses, which had collapsed in a matter of hours under the Undead’s onslaught. The Phoenix Rebellion established itself as the primary opposition to Enor, and attracted many of the former members of the Ruling Council, including Eze’kiel Tarus, Zibaen Vivyaen and Throdo Therving. The rebels set their goals at their outpost on the White Road: to dethrone Enor but to preserve the Kingdom of Oren. King Enor, realizing his position was untenable, decided that he should abdicate the throne. However, his decision to appoint his once adversary, the Hochmeister of the Teutonic Order, Gaius Marius, as King in his place roiled the people of Oren. The revolutionaries, lead by Eze’kiel Tarus, seized the city of Galahar and refused to acknowledge the Hochmeister as King. Gaius Marius, as a compromise, decided to let the issue of who would be King of Oren lie and formed a dual-monarchy between the newly created Kingdoms of Hanseti(Centered on Konigsberg) and Renatus(centered on Renatus), with Eze’kiel Tarus crowned as the first King of Renatus in 1440. Gaius Marius, the Greatest of the Hochmeisters of the Tuetonic Order, would soon fade from Aegis to be replaced by his Ordenmarchalle, Sam. The deposed Enor Sheffield and and the former King’s widow, Dawn Perea decided to strike out on their own and formed the fledgling Kingdom of Salvus, but the Salvian sun would really begin its rise under a different sky. This splitting of humanity would set the scene for pivotal events to come. Queen Cassandra, Alras, and the South For the period immediately following the fall of Al’Khazar, Queen Cassandra emerged as the chief Undead agent. She launched daring raids on Sanjezel and Laurelin, and started a forest fire that nearly destroyed Malinor. After she was defeated and beheaded following a battle at Galahar, the Undead appeared to draw back for a time, and there was discussion of an offensive to retake Al’Khazar. An attempt to remove the miasma and corrupting Cassandra had spread through central Laurelin, near the Gauntlet, by the Druids and Mages Guild ended in a nether portal appearing in the center of the ruins. It would remain to be seen what role this portal would play. However, before and answers could be unearthed, the Undead launched a massive offensive on the City of Alras in 1447. The ensuing battle lasted for weeks as the Descendants rallied to defend the city and fought street by street. The gates were breached following a fierce clash on the frozen river outside the city, and many realized that the defense was hopeless As the boulevards of the inner districts were overrun, an effort to evacuate the remaining Alrasians to Malinor was conducted by elven forces. The remaining Alrasian forces were trapped inside the cathedral, and though they prepared to make a last valiant stand, they were quickly overwhelmed by the Undead hordes ones the doors of the sanctuary were breached. The fall of Alras brought about a feeling of desperation among the remaining Descendants, as their power to resist the Undead dwindled as the Undead’s own power grew. Princess Lirinya of Malinor was soon corrupted by the Undead, and launched an offensive from the South, first burning Ravenhold and Elvindale, destroying both towns. She then launched an attack on Laurelin which was beaten back, but not before corrupting the city center. It became apparent that Lirinya was being assisted by a member of the elven government. There were efforts to investigate who was influencing events, but following High Princess Indelwehn’s betrayal of Krugmar, when it was discovered that the High Princess has been tainted by the undead during her captivity at Wrath’s Clutch. However, Indelwehn attempted to assassinate Prince Ebs, who was driven underground. She was eventually removed by the High Council, who elected Haelphon, a half elf, High Prince of Malinor. He would remain High Prince during the final days as the elves of Malinor withdrew into Laurelin and fortified the city for the coming onslaught. The Final Struggle Shortly after the Undead attacked and destroyed the Dwarven capital of Kal’Urguan, Native, the former High Prince of Malinor, returned from his travels to rally the few that could still fight to come forward as champions to venture into the Nether to defeat the Undead. It was obvious the the Descendants were losing the war, badly, and that merely defending the shrinking patches of Aegis that were still habitable was no longer a viable strategy. Champions were chosen, and as they ventured into the Nether, those remaining behind prepared for the worst. The Champions fought against bitter Undead resistance, but they eventually broke through and retrieved the Axe of Krug, which was then cast into the void in an attempt to destroy the Undead once and for all. And, it appeared for a moment that the Champions had succeeded, as the Nether began to crumble around them. However, as the survivors, many of them carrying grevious wounds, emerged from the portal in Laurelin, Iblees’ drakes swept in from the North, burning Galahar and Sanjezel before any reaction could be mustered Flight The appearance of the drakes and Iblees’ survival of the destruction of the Undead was simply too much for the Descendants. A full rout towards the Verge portal began in 1350, and those already in the Verge prepared to make for calmer shores aboard great ships that had been constructed for such a purpose. The collected knowledge of the elven people was lost when the Great Library within the Mother Tree was incinerated with the rest of Laurelin. Hundreds perished as drakes continued to destroy everything the Descendants had built, and finally the Cloud Temple fell, collapsing in on itself. As the last survivors fled, Aegis was left a broken and diseased land. Years later, it would become apparent that the Descendants lost more than just their homes that fateful day.
  7. VonEbs

    [Poll] Paid LC Feedback/Opinions

    I agree with all of @Sporadic's points on the layout of our server's settlements. I'm not exactly sure if LC is the culprit but there is definitely a problem with the design process for all these cities when there appears to be no attempt whatsoever to build a functioning community where roleplay can occur. Reality is, each city is going to have 1, maybe 2 hubs of roleplay, and city design should be focused on funneling people into those hubs while also solving other practical concerns like having adequate housing and in some cases, defensiveness.
  8. VonEbs

    Dunshire is slaughtered once again

    Perhaps there is need for another halfling march for peace.
  9. VonEbs

    Excerpts of a Forthcoming Work

    In the boulevards of Caras Eldar, Sennisten, Markev, Ruriksgrad, Holm and Belvitz, a street urchin would approach you hawking a most unusual product: a slender tome containing quality printing. Intrigued, you pay a pittance for his ware. Some time later, upon your arrival at your destination, you take out the book, opening it to read of a most marvelous announcement: Excerpts of a Forthcoming Work: Dramatic Chronicles of Historical Import The elf Ebs Telrunya, last scion of that ancient and noble Malinorian line, wishes to inform all interested parties, scholar or otherwise, of the completion of the first half of his great life work. Many elven years has he labored over this account, the first ever attempt at putting to paper the trails and tribulation of our four great races, the Descendants. For you see, under the Seven Skys have the Descendants lived and died: Aegis, Asulon, Anthos, Athera, Vailor, Axios and now Atlas. The subject of this Chronicle, the Chronicle of the Seven Skies, is just that, the comprehensive and factually accurate events of our shared history. Glorious battles between great hosts, the rise and fall of empires, endless political intrigue and the lives of our greatest citizens, recorded and relayed in one fantastic work. Below are excepts from the first three volumes, covering the events of Aegis, Asulon and Anthos. These completed volumes, along with certain other works of scholarship, are to be released within the next elven week. In the meantime, however, enjoy these choice selections, amounting to not even one half of a tenth of the completed work, of some of the most consequential events in the Descendants' history. From the First Sky: The Immolation of Kal’Bryst Why the Undead chose the North as the focus of their initial onslaught is a matter of speculation, but regardless, the North bore the brunt of the attack. The first battle was at the now famed city of Kal’Bryst, then a backwater dwarven outpost in the North. Nothing could prepare the residents for the hell that would reign down on them that fateful night in 1303 when the relentless Undead hordes fell upon their helpless village. The resident dwarves were slaughtered, and by the time a call for aid was received by the peoples of Aegis, the city was being consumed by unnatural flame. Still, an army was marshalled and rode north, lead by the Wandering Wizard. The dwarven party was the first to arrive, and after a brief skirmish with the previously unknown enemy in which they suffered heavy casualties, they withdrew with whatever survivors they could find to the forward camp set up by Availer. As orcs, elves, humans and dwarves gathered for a counterattack, it became clear that this menace was like none other faced by the Descendants. Hordes of reanimated and decaying corpses milled about the city, falling upon any living thing. And pale skeletal archers kept sentry, ready to lose a flight of arrows at any that might challenge them. These horrors were small in comparison to the abominations found in the Undead themselves; neither living nor dead, their kept their grotesque faces and bodies shrouded in hoods so that all that could be seen were two soulless eyes. The full extent of their dark magic and necromancy was not known at the time, but it would soon become startlingly clear that the Descendants stood little match. A call went forth through the assembled armies that it was time for a great counterattack. The largest army ever assembled charged forth under the command of the Wandering Wizard. Unspeakable spells and boiling firebolts exploded through their ranks as they clashed with the hordes of skeletons and zombies, and warriors of all races fell in droves. The armies clashed back and forth, neither gaining the advantage, until a giant stomped and hammered a path through the Descendant’s ranks, and the great army wavered, almost breaking. But then, High Prince Native of Malinor and his elven archers appeared, bringing the giant down with a single volley of arrows, turning the battle against the Undead Necromancers. The archmages of the Mages Guild cleared a path to the city, and the great army charged through, entering bitter street fighting against the necromancers and what was left of their horde. Towers exploded as the Undead threw every incantation they had against the Descendants, but it was all in vain as each Necromancer was cornered and cut down. The price of victory was extraordinarily high, and Kal’Bryst had to be abandoned, for the Undead’s corruption was too much for any living being to tolerate. In the wake of the battle, still little was known of the Undead, but one name was on every tongue in Aegis: Iblees. From the Second Sky: Trouble among the Elves In Haelun’or, then still a new settlement that few believed would survive, debate swirled about the future of the high elves, or mali’aheral in the elven tongue. It was during this period that Haelun’or closed its gates to the outside world, just as a rising wave of hostility exploded in Malinor against what was viewed as a belief in racial supremacy from many within the walls Haelun’or. This would usher in a dark period in Haelun’or’s early days, as its increasing isolation made it a target from the orcs of Krugmar, with Rex Mogroka’Gorkil leading the Purge of Haelun’or on the city-state in 1373. The hastily armed high elven defenders held the orcish pillagers at bay, holding a line on the steps of the university. They fought on, exacting heavy casualties against the orcs, until Mogroka marshalled his best fighters for a final charge at the center, scattering the defenders in the tumult of screeching steel and war chants. The library was burned and city sacked, with the high elven bodies piled high among the once serene towers. The silver enclave just barely survived the catastrophic loss. Intensely shaken by the experience, the high elves of Haelun’or turned even further in on themselves. Following this crisis, Ellir’siol took over many of the responsibility of Maheral, emerging as the leading voice among the mali’aheral in philosophy, diplomacy and statecraft. She was the first to formulate the maehr'sae hiylu'ehya, which would come to dominate all facets of life within the Silver State of Haelun’or. The mali’aheral were unprepared for the crisis that would grip them with the rise to prominence of one mali’aheral, Nelecar. Adopting even more radical variants of Ellir’siol’s philosophy, he began pitting citizens of the Silver City against each other, beginning a campaign of murderous terror in order to erode the democratic order that had been established with the okarir system. While he was ultimately unsuccessful, several mali’aheral were murdered, the experience proved formative for the young city state. During the period, the studies and writing of Lucion Sullas took form, and among his initiatives was the discovery of the Kharajyr, an intelligent feline race native to Asulon. Not much was known about them during initial encounters with between the mali’aheral and the kha, but cordial relations were established, beginning a storied relationship between the two often misunderstood cultures. From the Third Sky: Battle of the Dreadfort An escalating set of confrontations between elements within the Holy Oren Empire lead to the creation of two factions, centered on the competing powers of Hanseti and Blackmont. The Order of the White Rose and House Chivay had thrown in with the Blackmonts, while the Shields of Salvus under the direction of James I Hightower supported the Sariants. House Carrion and Silverblade fell in with Blackmont, while House Elendil and Green swore oaths of support to Mirtok DeNurem. Emperor Horen V implicitly gave his support to a confrontation between the two groups under the auspices of low crown authority, and let it be known he would support whichever side prevailed in the coming martial contest. The Battle of the Dreadfort will perhaps go down as one of the most consequential assaults in the long history of internal human conflicts, rivaling in intensity to the Dukes’ War and the Courlandic Rebellion. The Sariants of the Teutonic Order, under the direction of King Mirtok DeNurem, launched an all out assault on the Dreadfort in 1431. The works were defended by the North Anthos Treaty Organization (NATO), which was comprised of the Blackmonts and their numerous allies. The Sariants bombarded the Dreadfort for hours, and launched repeated assaults on any breach they could establish in its walls, managing to break into the lower levels of the castle. As the Dreadfort crumbled around the defenders, things looks increasingly hopeless, until King Peter Chivay rallied the NATO forces into a final counterattack, directing his forces out a clandestine passage built into the Dreadfort’s foundations. With the fortresses’ towers collapsing around them the defenders gathered, leaving only a token force defending the walls. After he judged sufficient men had gathered for a sally, Peter Chivay lead them out in a great rush, overwhelming the scattered Sariants and allies scattered outside of the destroyed bastion. The Teutons were pressed back to the bridge connecting Hanseti to points south, and Mirtok ordered the bridge burned to prevent the Blackmonts from advancing any further. The failure to seize the Dreadfort proved disastrous for the Kingdom of Hanseti, which was promptly dissolved by the Emperor. It also directly lead to the Massacre of Kingston the following year in 1432, where the Orenian Inquisition, under the direction of Thomas Chivay, utterly annihilated the Shields of Salvus and evicted House Hightower from Salvus, though House Hightower would eventually regain their Kingdom upon joining their House with House Horen through matrimony, becoming House Horen-Hightower. The accompanying White Rose proceeded to the sack the city, destroying much of its accumulated wealth.
  10. VonEbs

    CARAS ELDAR GAZETTE | Issue #1

    Ebs Telrunya, former Editor in Chief of the Flagship, approves of this publication.
  11. VonEbs

    Lord of the Meme, VOL. 1

    good meme
  12. VonEbs

    [Your View] Event Team

    No, because you lack the maturity or the ability to fulfill the duties of the position you hold. My apologies though, I was under the impression that you were looking for the player's view on the Event Team and its leadership. My mistake that it appears not to be the case.
  13. Easy to understand why the server is in a period of decline when the staff is unwilling to punish even the most blatant examples of metagaming.

    1. Show previous comments  15 more
    2. Freischarler

      Freischarler

      Pvpfac- stopped reading. So annoying lol

    3. Treshure

      Treshure

      "PvP factions people"

      we play the same game as you and go through the same roleplay. i can confirm a bird was sent through legit means. whether you choose to accept that or continue to whine on the forums on how the oppressive pvp factions groups are hurting everyone thats ur choice

    4. Space

      Space

      only thing gonna decline is your mom on this **** ha

  14. VonEbs

    Culling the herd: Playable creatures

    It's the classic problem in any sort of politics: everyone in principle agrees on cuts/reductions, but in practice no one wants what they are most interested cut. Still, that's why not just one person makes these decisions and the staff should be able to rise above pure self interest and decide which of these creatures are vital for roleplay and which should be discarded. People should and are free to advocate their position, but each person isn't entitled to have their wishes followed.
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