Creation of the World
The gods created the world to serve as a home for their children.
Rule of The Titans
Over time, one set of children, the Titans, decided to take over. They defied the rule of the gods and tinkered with forbidden knowledge. Some split to follow the titans; others continued to worship the gods of creation. The Titans created twisted monstrosities to wage war and enslave the others; Tal responded by giving his followers the secret ritual to creating Warforged to aid them.
Fall of the Titans
Fall of the Titan’s Followers
Those that had followed the Titans tried to rebuild their empire, using the forbidden knowledge and tools passed down to them by their masters. Monsters flocked under the banner of the Titans, and war came once again. The gods finally smote the Titan’s followers as well, leading to the Second Cataclysm. What remained of the Titan’s followers and monsters retreated north, to the Titan’s Reach.
The Empire of the Sun
Finally free of the threat of tyranny and oppression, the humans, elves, halflings, and dwarves bickered and fought. They turned their eyes away from the gods, and waged war on each other. In addition, monsters continued to raid occasionally from the north, trying to re-established their dominion over all.
The Crusade of Light
Finally, a young elven priestess of Dasmet, Elythra Quickblade the Radiant, had a vision sent by her deity. She had been Chosen to unify the people and lead them north, cleansing the world of the blight brought into existence by the wicked Titans. Over the course of a century people flocked to her, and eventually she pulled all of the good peoples of the world under a single banner — the Empire of the Sun.
Expansion of Empire
Once she had consolidated the races of good, she marched north with a massive army. As a beam of light she pushed back the darkness of the Titan’s Reach. There she built a new capital, the Light of Justice, and ruled with a kind and even hand, as did her descendants in the House of Elyth.
Fall of the House of Elyth
It is believed that the Empire of the Sun lasted over four millenia. However, in the end a resurgence of monsters lead to its downfall. Monstrous raids increased, and eventually open warfare broke out. The Empire of the Sun always managed to squelch the uprisings; however, they grew more frequent and bloody. Finally, assassins managed to sneak into the royal palace and kill the Selvetis d’Elyth, the ruler, as well as his entire entourage — courtiers, family, friends, and heirs. The atrocity was so brutal that the Sun stopped shining during the attack — Dasmet himself had somehow become blinded, and could not protect his faithful servant from such horrors. The city fell soon after, and the Empire broke. Over the next few decades the good folk retreated back south, leaving the Titan’s Reach to the monsters who belonged there.
The Dark Ages
Without strong rulership, the good people fell to bickering amongst themselves again. War ravaged the land as dwarves fought elves fought humans (halflings hid, keeping out of harms way). On top of this chaos, the monsters, sensing weakness and possible revenge, poured out of the North Pass once again. Each time the good folk banded together to drive them back; each time they succeeded, then fell to fighting amongst themselves again.
Rise of the Empire of the Shining Ray
About 360 years ago a human general named Charles Ironfist consolidated the fragmeneted human kingdoms. Changing his name to Charles of the Brightblade (in deference to Lady Elythra) he proceeded to defeat and absorb each of the good races in turn. Some joined him willingly; others, less so. Eventually, however, he managed to repeat the feat of Lady Elythra — he brought all of the good folk south of the Shadowfell under one banner. Many assumed that he was recreating the Empire of the Sun; however, he did not intend to repeat the mistakes of Lady Elythra, and did not pursue conquest against the monsters to the North. Instead, he lead his people to productivity and peace. Recognizing, however, that the Empire would never be complete until the Titan’s Reach had been settled, he named the country the Empire of the Shining Ray — a tribute to the work that still lie ahead.
Invasions from the North
The organization of the good folk did nothing to stem the tide of monsters that invaded every 10 to 20 years; if anything, the attacks grew more organized and brutal. Each time the people of the Shining Ray repulsed the invasions, but each time the cost grew larger. Eventually, the Crown recognized that it was facing probing attacks by a greater force. Something larger was guiding the enemy, and it was only a matter of time before the full force of their armies would come knocking on the door.
The Last InvasionApproximately a century ago that invasion came. Hordes of monsters swept down through North Pass, decimating the land as they passed. Within a week they controlled over five thousand square miles of forest and farmland. The Realm Guard managed to hold the line, but morale was low, and the enemy forces seemed overwhelming. The Crown devised a cunning plan to assassinate the leader of the monstrous forces, a dark being of terrifying power known only as the Demon-King. At the same time the Realm Guard struck at the monsters’ supply lines, throwing their support network into confusion. Thus disorganized, the enemy was routed and driven back. 47 years ago the town of North Pass was established as a point of early warning against new potential threats from the north.
It has been over 60 years since the last invasion ended, the longest time in recorded history that peace has prevailed. Some are getting nervous, especially the longer lived races who survived the last war and remember its effects. The Crown has been openly preparing for the next war, churning out as many Warforged as it possibly can (now that the ritual has been mastered). In an additional twist, the current ruler, King Victor Brightblade decreed three years ago that any who brave the dangers of the Titan’s Reach may keep whatever they find without taxation. In the best case scenario, they will do what armies could not: tame the wilderness, defeat the monsters, and bring permanent peace to the world. A group of hardy souls responded. At first things looked promising — communication flowed freely back from North Pass about their exploits against the monsters of Titan’s Reach. The tide slowed, however, and now nothing has been heard back from them for almost a year. Now few dare to rise to the challenge, and all worry: when will the next war come?