In this, the final chapter of the History of Aetaltis, marvel at the rise of Winterkeep and Selenthea, the creation of Agthor, and the formation of Callios and the Free Kingdoms. And then witness the Declaration of Talimane, the moment that marks the end of The Lost Age and the birth of the modern AGE OF HEROES!
Click here to read the previous installment of The History of Aetaltis.
The Lost Age
In the aftermath of the Cataclysm, chaos descended on the lands of the Amethyst Sea. There would be no more shipments of plows, or vases, or cloth, or any of the other supplies the outer towns and villages had come to expect from the great urban centers. Vital ports, major highways, and nearly all the other structures of civilization had been broken. Their leaders were dead and the holy orders shattered.
In the fertile lowlands, petty warlords, long been held at bay by the superior power of the Alliance military, took advantage of the situation to rise up and seize control of the surrounding lands. The remnants of the Alliance military tried to hold them back, but with no supply lines, soldiers deserting to return to their homes and families, and all communication cut off from command, most units were lucky to hold their ground, much less push back the enemy.
In the hinterlands, the people had more than rogue armies to worry about. The endrori, long held at bay by the Alliance, also seized the opportunity presented by the Alliance’s sudden fall. Within a few weeks of the Cataclysm, any endrori or other dark creature that could escape the Deeplands surged out into the countryside.
Even surrounded by foes, too often the people were their own worst enemy. Fearing food shortages, the collapse of order, and the growing dangers of the wilds, many settlements fell into anarchy. Rioters filled the streets, Alliance store houses were broken into and looted, and the wealthy tried futilely to defend their estates against the desperate masses.
As it turned out, the situation was every bit as bad as they feared. Every major Alliance settlement had been home to a gate of some kind, whether it was one of the massive world gates or one of the smaller city gates. These settlements were nearly always located in the richest farmlands where an ample supply of food could support the population. When the waves of essence flowed out from the gates, they didn't stop at the city walls.
The wild essence rolled miles into the countryside before finally dissipating. Rich farmland, along with crops just weeks away from harvest, were as ravaged by the disaster as the settlements they surrounded. Even if a field survived, many became casualties of the ensuing wars between petty warlords and remnants of the Alliance army, or were burned by the endrori that surged up out of the hills.
By harvest, the few remaining fields yielded far less than needed for the survivors to make it through the coming winter. By the height of winter’s fury, starvation was the greatest threat the people faced, and by spring, nearly a third of those who had survived the Cataclysm succumbed to hunger.
Then there was the threat of disease. The largest clerical orders, whose task it was to heal those plagued by illness, had been headquartered within the large Alliance settlements. When the settlements were destroyed so were the orders and the majority of their clerics. The few clerics that survived could not hope to provide healing to everyone who needed it. Soon, deadly plagues, many of which had been held in check by the clerics for decades, ravaged the towns and villages of the region.
A Bastion of Knowledge
In those grim times learning was of little interest to most people, but a small group of sages and scholars set out on a mission. It was the year 110 AC, and in the high woodlands of the northern Dragontail Mountains they established a secret library. They built it in the ruins of a tower from the Age of Magic on the site of a long forgotten essence well.
When other learned people heard of this place, they too set out to find the tower. They brought with them whatever books, scrolls, and artifacts they could carry. Among these intelligentsia were many wizards, and with the addition of these spellcasters, the sages of the tower soon found themselves well-guarded against outside threats. Eventually they gave the tower a name—Winterkeep.
They chose the name not for the season but rather the winter of chaos that had fallen over the Amethyst Sea basin after the Cataclysm. The scholars designed Winterkeep to stand as a stronghold of knowledge amidst a rising tide of ignorance. Within its walls they stored all the knowledge of the land, so that someday, when civilization returned, generations of learning would not have been lost.
For many years, Winterkeep’s location remained a secret. The name was spoken of only in whispers, and even then, only to those who had proven their faithfulness. Secrecy was paramount since many power hungry warlords believed that Winterkeep held secret knowledge that could aid them in their campaigns for power.
Had one of the warlords launched an assault against the keep in those early days, it is unlikely that it could have withstood the attack. Fortunately, this the worst never happened, and Winterkeep survived. Much of the ancient knowledge that scholars benefit from today survived because it was hidden away in Winterkeep during the chaotic times after the Cataclysm.
It wasn't until many years later that the location of Winterkeep became public knowledge. The sages, sorcerers, and spellcasters of Winterkeep were powerful enough by then that no warlord would have dared to attack them. In the year 123 AC, Winterkeep expanded its initial aim of collecting knowledge by founding a college of wizardry. The school was the only one of its kind in those days, for all the other arcane schools on the Amethyst Sea basin had been destroyed during the Cataclysm.
The Land of Callios
In the southwest corner of the Amethyst Sea is the land called Callios. Nestled along the eastern edge of the southern Dragontail Mountains and sitting just west of the Zhamayen Jungle, it is a land of rich soil and fine grazing. Prior to the Cataclysm it had been densely populated, and many large Alliance colonies were located there.
The large number of colonies in the area, and thus the large number of arcane gates, meant that the Cataclysm ravaged Callios worse than many other lands. More than a century passed before the last essence storms dissipated, and even now the arcane residue of the destruction still lingers in the ether. In those early years, however, Callios was a strange land filled with arcane anomalies and mysterious, essence-touched creatures.
The fading of the residual essence did not signal the end of chaos for Callios. Even before the Cataclysm, the Calliosan court had been a fractious entity. Scores of wealthy, landowning nobles fought constantly for power, and it was all the royal family could do to hold the kingdom together. When the Cataclysm struck, most of the nobility were at their country estates where they stayed during the late summer and early autumn. While the cities and urban centers were all destroyed, the nobility survived—with the exception of the royal family. Within a decade the long standing rivalries between noble houses erupted into open warfare.
The nobles engaged in minor wars on and off for many years, and by the year 124 AC only eight of the original noble houses remained. In the summer of that year, all eight houses embarked on a massive campaign of warfare in an attempt to topple their rivals once and for all. Despite the nobles’ grand plans, the wars did not end with the coming of autumn, and it was two decades before a peace was finally achieved. To the dismay of everyone involved, however, when peace did come, it came at the hands of an outsider.
From the north sailed a gallant sea captain named Alloren Farsky. He commanded a fleet of thirty ships, all manned by well-trained sailors and carrying an army of skilled soldiers and horsemen. The force landed just south of the Dragon’s Maw in the year 144 AC. No one today knows exactly what land these men came from, but they swept across Callios like an icy northern wind.
Within two years Farsky and his men defeated all eight of the noble lords. When the city of Tricos, once the capital of Callios, fell to Farsky and his men, he declared himself King of Callios. He immediately set out on an ambitious plan of reconstruction, married the daughter of one of the fallen noble lords, and earned the love of the people with his kindness to the common folk.
The founding of Farsky’s kingdom might have been the first step toward healing for the Amethyst Sea basin had it not been for one thing: Farsky was not only a powerful warrior, but a merciful victor. Rather than having the defeated noble lords killed, he sent them into exile. From their exile, they plotted revenge. With no hope of retaking their lands by force, they hired assassins to kill the new king.
Despite the king’s constant retinue of guards, an assassin made it through his defenses. In the year 167 AC, thirteen years after he took the throne, King Alloren Farsky was killed by a poisoned dagger as he left his council chambers. Farsky had three sons, none of whom had been well raised, for their father spent more time on his kingdom than on his family. With their father’s passing, the three young men set their eyes on the throne.
Once more Callios stood on the brink of war. At the urging of their mother, however, the sons made an agreement. They split the kingdom into three parts of equal value, and each took command of one of these parts. None of their kingdoms ever held the promise of Farsky’s Callios, but Callios managed to avoid another costly war. An uneasy peace fell over the land.
The City of Selenthea
In the year 202 AC, a small group of exhausted elven scholars arrived at the gates of Winterkeep. They carried a collection of scrolls and books and asked to exchange these for acceptance into the tower. The leaders of Winterkeep approved the request without hesitation, for the texts the elven scholars brought were unlike anything the sages of Winterkeep had ever seen.
More ancient than anything in the keep’s great library, the strange texts were inscribed in the flowing script of the ancient fey courts. Brightly illuminated with intricate flourishes and patterns, their beauty filled the readers with awe. There was more, however, to these strange scrolls than simple beauty. Close examination revealed the incredible truth: the scrolls were written during the Age of Magic.
When questioned about the scrolls’ origins, the scholars explained that they were members of an isolated elven village on the edge of the Elliyen Wilds. Herb gatherers from their village happened across ancient fey ruins at the wilds’ edge and discovered these scrolls within. When a band of endrori raiders attacked the village, the scholars fled with the scrolls. They returned to their village later only to discover it burned to the ground and the inhabitants carried off or slaughtered. With nowhere to go, and hoping to save these ancient texts, they began the arduous journey to Winterkeep.
The librarians of Winterkeep asked these travelers if they could find their way back to the place where the scrolls were found. The scholars said they could and plans were made for an expedition to the Elliyen Wilds.
This was an unprecedented move for Winterkeep, since until then they focused their efforts on protection and containment. Scholars who found their way to the keep were welcomed, along with the knowledge they carried, but the keep’s leadership made no attempts to actively seek out lost knowledge. When the planning for the expedition started, many within the keep disagreed with this change in strategy.
The heated arguments and debates went on all winter until, by the summer of 203 AC, the two sides were so firmly divided that neither saw any hope of reconciliation. After a monumental debate on the floor of the grand council chamber, the side in favor of exploration declared that if their wishes were not met, they would leave Winterkeep. The isolationists refused to conceede. By nightfall, a document called the Schism Scroll rested on the Magister’s desk. It declared that those who favored exploration would quit Winterkeep and set out for the wilds.
The explorers never believed that the isolationists would give in to their demands, and they were not proven wrong. They had already prepared for their journey, having gathered the mounts, funds, and the other supplies they required. They also made arrangements for protection. They hired a respected group of mercenaries, the Knights of Steelpeak, to accompany them on their trek to the wilds.
With over 100 scholars, 200 functionaries, and 100 mercenary soldiers, they formed the largest expedition seen on the Amethyst Sea in decades. As they passed through the struggling towns and villages on their journey east, they inspired the people they met there. Desperate for a better life, many of these people picked up and followed the company. Soon their number swelled to 500, then 800, then 1000. By the time they reached the port at Hawk’s Crest, the party consisted of more than 1500 souls.
In Hawk’s Crest the leaders of the expedition set to work assembling a fleet. They purchased every ship they could find, hired sailors, and spent the next year building additional ships. Endrori attacked the city twice during that time, but on both occasions the Knights of Steelpeak and the expedition’s wizards defeated the invaders.
In the spring of 205 AC, the preparations were complete. They set sail on a cool morning, and catching the stonewise winds that race along the northern coast of the Amethyst Sea, they set out for the wilds.
The journey was not without its troubles. Of the 20 ships in the fleet, 7 were lost and 2 had to be abandoned due to hull worms. It was nearly two months before the fleet reached its destination, a large bay on the Windsinger Sea. They named the body of water Toletrenor Bay in honor of the Enaros of knowledge.
At the northernmost end of the bay, scouts discovered the ruins of an Alliance town. It stood on an island at the headwaters of a mighty river. Their investigation suggested that the town had fallen prior to the Cataclysm and never housed a gate. The scholars chose the spot as the place to establish their new colony. As they set up camp, they discovered a marker with the ruined town’s name on it. The scholars named their new settlement after the old Alliance town: Selenthea.
The Calliosan League
As the little colony of Selenthea carved a patch of civilization out of the wilderness, important events transpired in other parts of the world. Back in Callios, a consortium of merchant companies mounted an expedition to the Zhamayen Jungle. It set out in 207 AC in search of exotic spices and magical plants.
The expedition was gone for three years, but when they returned they carried an incredible shipment of plant extracts, dried herbs, and essence touched flora. Within another two years the merchants established trading colonies all along the edge of the jungle, and within five years they were shipping valuable loads of spice to lands in the north.
These merchants grew wealthy as their ships circled the Amethyst Sea. They followed the stonewise currents to bring spices to the north, and returned with valuable northern trade goods when the current took them south. In 221 AC the merchants formed a formal organization to manage the distribution of spices and other jungle products and resolve disputes. Called the Calliosan Merchant’s League, it consisted of the wealthiest and most powerful merchant companies in the land.
The leaders of the three kingdoms of Callios paid little attention to the growing power of the merchants. The kings were greedy men and cared only about the gold that taxes on the merchants’ wealth brought into their treasuries. This proved a fatal mistake.
The nobility of Callios, growing fat off the endeavors of the merchants, grew greedier with each passing year. In 231 AC the five greatest merchant houses in the League made a pact. They used their combined clout to oppose the nobility, colluded to manipulate prices, schemed to alter the availability of important goods, and otherwise tampered with the financial power of the kings.
The nobility was not amused. In the city of Tricos the conflict came to a head. It was the year 235 AC and the king at that time, Lord Humdort III, ordered his troops to march on the docks and seize all of the warehouses and their stock. The merchants were prepared for this. Their warehouses were well-guarded, and when the king’s men arrived fighting broke out. By nightfall, the entire city was engulfed in battle.
The battle at Tricos lasted a week, but eventually the tricosan merchants overwhelmed the nobles’ forces. They were now an island of freedom in a hostile land. Royal warships were dispatched to blockade the port, and a great army was sent to lay siege to the city.
The other merchants of the League realized that if things went badly in Tricos, they were next. To this end the Calliosan Merchant’s League made a momentous decision. They decided to go to war. All across the three kingdoms, merchant lords called their vassals to them, revealed hidden stocks of weapons (hoarded for just such an occasion), and contested the power of the nobility.
By midsummer 236 AC the entire region was plunged into war. The effects of this conflict were felt throughout the Amethyst Sea basin, since it brought the majority of trade in the region to a halt. The fighting lasted for six years until in 242 AC the last of the three kingdoms fell to League's forces.
The League portioned out the land to the eight most powerful merchant houses in a fully business-like manner. The divisions were made based on the city where each of the houses was headquartered and the calculated value of the surrounding countryside. The resulting city-states are the same eight political bodies that still rule the region to this day.
Land of a Thousand Kings
To the south of the Donarzheis Mountains is an open country known as the Plains of Agthor. When the Alliance controlled the region, it had been the most fertile and productive land on the Amethyst Sea. After the Cataclysm, however, it fractured into a thousand tiny kingdoms, each ruled by whoever was strong enough to hold onto it.
With increasing waves of endrori raiders coming down out of the Donarzheis Mountains, the common folk had little choice but to serve these warlords to gain their protection. Most of these warrior kings were unscrupulous criminals who ruled by force and fear.
When the warlords weren't fighting endrori, they were fighting each other. The struggle to claim more and better land was constant, and the people of the region lived in a continuous state of war. Crops were regularly pillaged or burned, most of the men were conscripted to fight, and all the resources of the land were focused on supporting the local warlord and his personal whims or desires.
The High Lord of Agthor
For more than two centuries this remained the state of things in the region. There seemed little hope of change. Then, in the year 318 AC, a boy was born in the lands near the ruins of Old Erinor. His name was Malinar Drakewyn and he was the son of
a peasant farmer. He grew up strong and his father, an amateur scholar, taught the boy the value of wisdom and knowledge.
On the day of his sixteenth birthday, Malinar was conscripted to fight in the infantry of the local warlord. He was sent to the north to take part in a battle already raging along shores of the Whitestone River. Malinar survived those early fights. As time passed he proved himself a cunning warrior and learned to love the martial life. He rose quickly through the ranks, and soon he commanded the majority of the warlord’s forces.
During one of his campaigns the warlord sent Malinar through his old village. To Malinar’s horror he discovered that it had been ravaged during a recent battle there. Racing to his parents’ home he found it burned to the ground and his parents charred corpses lying among the wreckage.
The joy Malinar had found in his position of power disappeared. He wished for nothing more than an end to the constant war that gripped his land. He declared that he would personally put a stop to the fighting.
That night Malinar and his five closest lieutenants left camp and headed west. They set off to find warriors to join them in their quest to bring order back to Agthor. They soon discovered that idealism and determination were not enough. Without wealth to pay soldiers, they stood little chance of forming even a small army.
While sitting in a tavern debating their next move, they overheard an old traveler talking about the ruins of Old Erinor. According to the stranger, he had been inside the ruins and had seen treasure beyond his wildest imaginings. He would have brought it out, he insisted, if not for the spirits of the dead who rose up and chased him from his prize.
Malinar knew what to do. He and his companions would venture into the ruins of Old Erinor and find the lost treasure of that once great city. With the wealth they obtained, they could hire mercenaries, form an army, and march toward Malinar’s dream.
The stories of Malinar’s adventure are the stuff of legend now. While there are many tales, no one is entirely sure what happened in the essence soaked ruins of Old Erinor, but somehow, Malinar survived. Only two of his companions made it out with him, but they did indeed return with treasure.
They hired soldiers with their newfound wealth, and soon Malinar had his army. It was not, however, the strength of his army that garnered Malinar the most attention. Rather, it was the crown and scepter he wrested from the great palace near the center of the ruins.
According to a dwarven prophecy made just days before Cataclysm, the son of the dragon wind would rise from the ashes of a terrible destruction to take the throne of the High Lord. He would carry the sigils of power from the heart of madness and bring light back to the land. Malinar wasn’t aware of this prophecy, but in the first village he came to, he met an old cleric who was.
When the cleric saw the crown and scepter, he threw himself at Malinar’s feet and pledged his allegiance to the young warrior. Malinar tried to turn the cleric away, but he could not dissuade the old man. Soon the cleric spread word throughout the town, and the townspeople, who respected the cleric deeply and were hungry for any spark of hope, pledged themselves to Malinar as well.
When Malinar departed the next morning more than half the village took to the road with him. At each town he came to, more people joined him, and by the time he reached the Pendroth Peninsula his party numbered over 3000 strong.
In some ways this was a boon. Among the followers were able-bodied warriors, talented craftspeople, blacksmiths, leatherworkers, and even clerics skilled in the art of healing. In other ways, the attention he received proved a problem. Too quickly his actions became known to the warlords of the region, and they mobilized their forces to squash this upstart. It wasn’t long before the first attack.
Fate was on Malinar’s side. Everything in the battle seemed to go his way, and victory against the attacking army was secured quickly with few losses. What is more, most of the enemy survivors defected to Malinar’s side and joined his army. Although Malinar had the power of prophecy on his side and was a brilliant military commander, the number of enemies who changed sides and joined his cause was more a result of the way Malinar led his people than anything else.
Malinar believed in treating all who followed him equally and fairly. From the simplest servant to the most skilled warrior, all were valuable in the eyes of the High Lord. Even his enemies he treated with respect and mercy. This reinforced the growing belief that Malinar Drakewyn was indeed the High Lord of the prophecy.
Over the next few years, Malinar continued to gather followers to him. By the time he reached Stormkeep, the castle of the warlord who had conscripted Malinar as a boy, his army was over 10,000 strong and he had five times that in other followers. The siege lasted less than a month, and by the third day of the month of Alantra in the year 342 AC Malinar Drakewyn marched into the keep as the victor.
Malinar declared himself High Lord of Stormkeep, and his followers settled in the farmlands around it. Unfortunately for Malinar and his army, there was no time to rest. They spent the rest of the summer confronting one warlord after another. Slowly, his lands grew until his was the largest kingdom in the region.
In 343 AC Malinar’s army laid siege to Eldrith Keep on the Bay of Agthor. This formidable fortress was built on the ruins of an ancient dwarven stonehold. It was the greatest challenge Malinar had yet faced, and some claimed that the attack on that great keep would be his ruin.
The siege lasted over a year, but finally the castle fell to Drakewyn’s forces. Malinar was so impressed by the ability of the fortress to withstand his attack, that in the summer of that year he moved his capital to Eldrith. Finally accepting the role the populace had claimed for, he renamed the place New Erinor after Agthor's old capital, and he accepted the title of High Lord over all the surrounding lands.
The Free Kingdoms
Not everyone was ready to pledge allegiance to the new High Lord, and Malinar Drakewyn’s reach had its limits. His example, however, inspired others to seek a better way. In the land between Agthor and the Halfling Dalelands, a visionary group of nobleman and military leaders set out to create a new nation. They envisioned a land where independent provinces were ruled with autonomy, turning to a centralized High Court for guidance only in times of desperate crisis or to settle disputes. They believed that only local leaders could know what was best for their people, not some cold, uncaring central government far from the people they governed. They called their land the Free Kingdoms.
In the early days, the Free Kingdoms lived up to the lofty dreams of its founders. Unfortunately, as the years passed and younger, less idealistic children took over thrones from their aging parents, and the dream of the Free Kingdoms began to fade. Within two generations the region had settled into their now familiar pattern of social maneuvering, shadowy intrigue, and war. The only thing that holds the kingdoms together at all is the mutual security the alliance provides against large endrori invasions, the desire to maintain autonomy from Agthor, and tradition.
The Silver Tower
In Selenthea, the tiny community of wizards and scholars had blossomed into a mighty city. People from across the Amethyst Sea travelled to this island of civilization on the edge of the wilds. Some came to offer their services, while others sought to profit from the needs of a swiftly growing city. Still others hoped to take advantage of the city’s civilizing presence to make land claims and become the new nobility of this uninhabited wild land.
In the year 341 AC, around the same time that Malinar Drakewyn and his army were marching across Agthor, the wizards of the Silver Circle decided that the time had come to establish a proper wizarding college in Selenthea. Plans were drawn up for a mighty tower where the collected knowledge of their work could be housed and new wizards could be trained. At the first thaw in the year 342 AC they broke ground on the largest island in the mouth of the river and construction of the tower began.
For more than thirty years laborers worked around the clock on this monumental structure. Taller than anything constructed in Aetaltis since the Age of Magic, it was a wonder of both engineering and spellcasting. Clever design was an important component in the tower’s construction, but the overall structure was reinforced many times over with powerful arcane spells and runes.
Upon its completion a great festival was held and people from all corners of Aetaltis came. Most notably, Winterkeep sent a contingent to congratulate the Silver Circle on their accomplishment. With that simple gesture, decades of animosity between the two orders was put behind them. While there is still a strong sense of professional competitiveness between the two towers, they have had excellent relations ever since that day.
The Seals Begin to Fail
The years went by and slowly life in the region improved. The city of Selenthea continued to grow and many small duchies took root in its shadow, the Calliosan league prospered, and the kingdom of Agthor brought a much needed civilizing influence to that region.
But all the while, a terrible danger was growing. With the collapse of the Alliance, many of the vital institutions of the region ceased to exist. Among these were the Warders of Alantra. For centuries before the Cataclysm they maintained the all-important seals that kept the endrori in the Deeplands. With the Warders gone, there was no one left to keep the seals strong, and after years of neglect the seals started to fail.
The first sign of the Dark creatures was in the lands surrounding Selenthea. There had been a great proliferation of Deepland entrances around the Black Gate, and when the seals of that region began to break the endrori swarmed forth like a plague. At first the selentheans assumed that this as just another small incursion. They felt certain that with enough force they could drive the endrori back and life would return to normal.
This was not the case. More and more endrori appeared until all of the newly settled duchies of Selenthea were under siege. Not long after this the same happened in New Erinor, then Port Vale, and then Callios. Alarmed, the leaders of the nations and city-states of the Amethyst Sea basin held an unprecedented summit in the city of Hawk’s Crest in the Free Kingdoms. There they discussed the growing threat and made a plan to combat it.
To begin with, the leaders wanted to know why this was happening. Parties of warriors were outfitted with the latest in military equipment and sent into the mountains to find the source of the trouble. In the end, only one party returned, but they brought with them the answer they'd sought: the seals were failing.
The explorers, however, brought back more than an explanation for the incursion. While exploring a ruined city high in the Donarzheis Mountains, they discovered a codex of ancient knowledge compiled by the last Warder of Alantra. It contained all the secrets of the old Order. Using this, the nations worked together to rebuild the ancient order of the Warders. In the year 390 AC the first group of Warders set out from city of New Erinor. Hope had returned.
The Declaration of Talimane
While the rebirth of the Warders of Alantra meant that the seals could be repaired, there were many seals and few Warders. The Warders worked tirelessly at their task, but progress was slow. The great nations helped where they could, but with endrori attacks becoming a regular occurrence, they had no choice but to keep their troops close to home to protect their people.
So it was that High Lord Valinar Drakewyn, grandson of Agthor's founder, Malinar Drakewyn, made a declaration at the shrine of Talimane in 411 AC that changed the world. There had always been brave souls who ventured into the very maw of evil to fight the forces of Darkness, and in his youth Valinar had seen first-hand what a group of determined adventurers could accomplish. Unfortunately, adventurers were regarded with suspicion. Many people felt that anyone who spent that much time in close proximity to the forces of Darkness couldn’t help but be tainted by it.
At the declaration of Talimane, Drakewyn put this notion to rest when he declared that the occupation of adventurer was an honorable and necessary one. Those who took up sword and spell to fight in the places where the great nations could not go would be treated with honor and respect. It was they who stood at the front of the battle, they who risked their lives every day for the good of the land. With this declaration, many brave young people flocked to this newly honorable profession.
THE AGE OF HEROES
The year is 423 AC. The great kingdom of Agthor is still the most powerful force on the Amethyst Sea, but the looming threat of the endrori overshadows everything they accomplish. The Free Kingdoms remain free, but most are mired in their petty bickering. Selenthea is regarded as one of the greatest centers of learning and wizardry in the land, but the presence of the wild lands on all of their borders leaves them constantly on their guard. The city-states of Callios continue to thrive, but it is a cutthroat culture where a man shakes your hand while stabbing you in the back.
Now, more than ever, the people of Aetaltis need heroes. Will you stand by and watch the world struggle to survive? Or will you take up the mantle of adventurer, and put spell and blade to the test in defiance of the Dark Hordes?
If so, if you have the courage to take on this burden for the good of all, perhaps there is still hope, and perhaps you will become the next…
…Champions of Aetaltis!
ART AND ILLUSTRATIONS
- Mage Looking Down on Selenthea by Mitchell Malloy
- Heroes on the Rocks by Mitchell Malloy
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