Tales of the Veridian Coast
History of the Coast
Galgema, and the Age of Wandering Gods
Galgema, known to the Gods and other unfathomable beings as the mortal coil, is the plane of the living. Forged from chaos of the elements, it is the birth place of Mortal life. In the time before the Gods, the Elements were bound in balance to it. A world of perfect balance between all things, order and chaos, life and death.
On this world, many new races appeared. They did compete and struggle against each other. Some were the leaders; kings, warlords, sages, and seers. As these champions of their people grew in power they drew followers to their causes. The faith of these disciples was so powerful that the champions became Gods.
However, as they fought as mortals, so too as gods. Thus, as more gods appeared, they began to fight, deal to make allies, or subvert the followers of other gods into worshiping them. Conflict became War…
The War of Shooting Stars
As Gods fought in the heavens, it is written that the night sky was filled with shooting stars, dying gods being cast form the Sea of stars above. As old gods died, new ones would take their place. As this war pressed on, many mortals were killed, by battle or by happenstance. Thus, one god rose to power above all others. The God of the Dead. His name, long lost to history even among the most ancient races and orders.
Soon, many gods conspired against the God of the Dead. Some coveting his power, some seeking to remove it. Exactly which god slew the Lord of Death is as unknown as their true name. When death died, however, several unexpected things happened. The Rules of Death were unwritten.
The first, and most dramatic of the consequences is the fall of many gods. This Last Twilight was seen on the Mortal Coil is a rain of shooting stars that lasted from nightfall until dawn. Many gods lost their divinity and were cast back to the earth below.
The second consequence was a new type of being: The Undead. Though Lichs, Vampires and animated skeletons existed before the Last Twilight, things such as ghouls and wraiths were unheard of. These monstrous beings feasted on the still living with undying hunger.
The third effect is perhaps the least known. Without rules to death, some are less likely to die than others. Many theologians dub these mortals are known as Heroes. Heroes are able to survive injuries regular mortals would die instantly from. They are beings of great power.
Rise of the Virian’haad
With the War between the gods over, mortal life resumed. Gods assumed a less involved role in the affairs of mortals, working only through mortal agents. The races of the world were at relative ease. However, one race began to exert its influence over its neighbors. These were the Virian’haad. The Virian’haad, mistakenly called Veridian Elves by many, are in fact not related to Elves. Their origins are unknown, but they were masters of magical manipulation. They created their weapons, armor, and even buildings from a strange summoned material now referred to as Veridian Ore. Though rare in modern times, its use was common in everyday Virian’haad society.
As the Virian’haad expanded, the enslaved many smaller human and elven kingdoms along their borders. These slaves were used for farming and manual labor by the wealthy of their central territories. However, these slaves decreased the need for the outlaying farming communities of the Virian’haad’s ever growing Arcane Empire. These serfs began to trade with the Gnomes to the North, the Minotaurs of the August Plains, and the Dragonborn of Kaldac. When the nobility discovered their relationships with the other races they quickly sent their soldiers and battle mages to occupy their land and enslave their own people. Rebellion ensued.
The Rebellion went on for two hundred years of war. Though the rebels, called Grel by the nobility, had a coalition of allies, the magic of the Virian’haad drew the war into a bloody stalemate. This was changed by the Druids, an order of Virian’haad and Elves dedicated to the preservation of Nature, which they claimed the Empire was damaging the fabric of the world through their manufacturing of Verdian Ore. They summoned a powerful nature spirit to fight on their behalf. The Nephilim, a demi-god born during the War of Shooting Stars.
With the Nephilim’s help, the Grel and their allies were able to push the nobility back to their most ancient of strongholds. It was their that the Virian’haad’s mages worked feverishly on a solution. After many failed attempts, their masterpiece was completed. A sword designed to slay gods, its name lost to history.
God fought god killer. In the end, Nephelim was victorious, slaying the champion and castings its blade away. It was driven mad by the wounds of the vile weapon, and using its great power, sunk the Empire into the Sea. Thus the Veridian Empire became the Veridian Sea.
Age of Heroes
Without the Virian’haad’s dominance, humans took center stage. The Jhovan Empire, a theocratic kingdom lead by the Patriarchs of Benyar, God of Justice and Order, became the center of commerce along the Veridian Coast. On the far side of the Veridian Sea, the human kingdom of Caria, ruled by a powerful aristocracy was gathering forces. However, neither kingdom could compete with the monsters seemingly born or awoken in the last century, likely a result of the Reckoning.
As the small pockets of society began to expand, they found themselves held back by strange beasts. Even the most well trained soldier could only hope to hold back the tide. However, the prayers of the common folk were answered by men and women of all races, professions, and faiths.
Heroes. They ranged from the mightiest of warriors to the most clever thieves. Mages and priests, woodsmen and monks. Whatever motives drove them, the results were the same. The Dark Tides were pushed back into the deep, dark places of the world. Civilization prospered.
The Gilded City
As the Great Nations began to grow and prosper, long since removed from the dark tides of vile hordes and from the rule of the Veridian Empire. The Jhovan Empire’s Patriarch, Gilgaad the Crusader, began to use the political and spiritual might of his followers to begin a campaign to Convert the followers of wild and chaotic gods. It started with cults to evil gods, Set and Duraga. Then Pangrus, god the Gnomes, was targeted next. Ika’pataang and Moradin, the deities of the Wilderness and Dwarves respective came soon after. Gilgaad declared the Odin, most powerful of the gods, had committed great damage to their civilization in the guise of Gruumsh One-eye, the Orc Lord.
Soon, the followers of all gods fled the Monotheistic Empire. Some traveled across the sea to Caria, a kingdom ruled by an aristocracy. Others traveled north, to seek refuge among the Elves and Dwarves. However, they came across the Gilded City.
Located in a Wind-kissed Valley, the city’s many buildings and roads were covered in gold. This new haven, thought to be a gift from the Gods, became the new home for the religious pilgrims. A land of new opportunity. They called the city in the Vale Windhearth, named for the constant winds that howled through the Valley.
Though most of the pilgrims worked to create a better place than Jhovan. Some used their new-found religious freedom to spread the influence of their dark gods. Thus, Windhearth is a city divided. It’s freedom loving citizens compete with those would supplant it with malicious rule.
Division of the Duchy
Two hundred years had passed since the founding of Windhearth and on the other side of the Veridian Sea, war covered the lands. The major nation of the Eastern Expanse was the Ramtheon Duchy. Originally a fiefdom of Caria, it had split one hundred years ago and had grown to surpass its parent nation. Under the rule of the Duke, it had once controlled the land between the mountains of Kaldac to the east to the Veridian Sea to the West.
Duke Frederick Rametheon IV sent his champion, Sir Richard the Grand, to bring order and civilzation to the Land between the Ram’s River and the Coast. Sir Richard and his Knights, the Order of Emberclaw, named for a powerful red dragon they vanquished, established a garrison and a port, which they proudly defended with the support of the Duke for twenty one years, until the passing of Duke Frederick IV.
Frederick’s son, Gregory Rametheon II, sought build a new palace for himself, in order to attract suitors from Carian Nobility, seeking to bring culture to the Duchy. As means to pay for this, he stopped supplying the Order of Emberclaw. When Richard the Grand personal went to the Duke to request assistance, he was cast out. The Duke recalled all the citizens of Caria from the Frontier, though none came. The Duke dubbed them narcissists, more concerned about their personal goals than the Realm’s. Thus, the Rametheon Frontier became Narsiss.
The Ember Claws, and the Alliance
34 years ago, Narsiss stood on the brink of destruction. The Knights of Emberclaw had lost much of their fighting strength and were little more than a band of mercenaries who could barely contain the bandits, goblins, and more powerful things from driving the small nation from the map. However, the last heir or Richard the Grand, Callen von Franz, sought to gather support from oversees. He entered a tournament, held by Lord Palroy of Windhearth, putting the Order up as his entry fee. He lost, killed by Duren Kateral, an Adventurer. Instead of taking the prize money, Kateral asked for the ownership of the Order.
Kateral traveled to Narsiss a month later and took command of mercenaries and remaining Knights. He reorganized them from the Order of Emberclaw into the Ember Claws, an elite mercenary company. Though the change was met with some resistance from the Parliament or merchants that ruled Narsiss, they earned to trust and support of the nation when their members defeated a powerful cult that had been attempting to summon an demon known as the Master in White Shadows.
With their strength renewed, the Duke of Rametheon feared that his people would flee to famine that had gripped the August Plains for two seasons for the fertile ans secure lands of Narsiss. Duke William Ramtheon declared war, saying that Narsiss was an occupying force on their rightfully claimed frontier.
The Ember Claws, as well as a new militia force and clergy from the Church of Thor, fought bravely against the massive Rametheon army. Despite their victories, they could never fight the Duke’s forces at every point. The Parliament sent emmissaries to other Nations. Wump, Caria, and Calcutpurse. Wump offered weapons and supplies, but no troops. Caria and Calcutpurse were unresponsive.
The Ramtheon Duchy, in the meantime annexed the outer territories of the Wraithwood, home to the savage Grunge Elves in order to fill the growing need for lumber. Soon after, the Wraithwood Tribe and the defenders of Narciss fought side-by-side, taking back the woods, as well as some of the land claimed by the Duke.
The Carian aristocracy, with past connections to the Duchy were hesitant to attack their cousins. However, the open and undefended resources of the August Plains allowed Queen Rosalina deCaleen to convince the nobles of the value of allying with the Wraithood Tribe and the Narcians. Wump, sent the Gnomish Legion to assist in exchange for Ember Claws to protect the Wilds. Pirate attacks against Narcian vessels stopped all together and new ships appeared in the port.
In the end, the Duke and his only son died in battle. Thus, the Duchy fell into Chaos. The nations that had fought alongside Narciss joined together to form a military and trade agreement. Though this group has no official name, they are known around the world as the Alliance.
Death of a God
Almost Four Thousand years had passed since the Death of the Death God occurred. The Gods had long agreed to peace between them. However, the Queen in Iron, an Angel in the service to Benyar had long been gathering followers of her own. Her views matched that of Patriarch Gilgaad of ages past and some scholars believe that she was in fact the one who inspired the Crusader to promote Monotheism.
Though the Queen in Iron had long been cast out from the Benyar’s court, she returned. With the power of her followers invested in her, she slew Benyar. With his death, the Mantle of Empires passed to her. As the new Goddess of Empires, she command the Patriarch of Jhovan, Bolivar the Orator, to cast of the followers of other Faiths and that all worship of Benyar should now be directed to her.
The Patriarch followed her command, as the New Empress. Some however, resisted. Many Knightly orders and traveling priests found themselves at the sword. After a bloody cleansing, the Empire was reborn. Soon after, Marshall deAsteria of Caria, who served as the General Governor in Windhearth in the name of Queen Rosalina deCaleen, sided with the Silver Lady, as she was now called.