Mazond - The Fate of Nations
A Brief History of Mazond
The First Age
Not much is known about the first age though the great elven historians report it was an age of heroes, war, and great deeds. There are a few major settlements in the north and the great elven city of Orageon was founded by Elgar Rivana who united the wood elves of Regia into one great tribe. Human clans consist of nomadic, warring tribes led by great warriors who farmed and foraged in the north and along the coasts. The Dwarven City-States in the Urkhard Mts. are founded around this time also, although one, Argetheim, is believed to have existed before. The land now called Golgiath is already populated by a diverse lot of humans, forest gnomes, stout and lightfoot halflings, high elves, and hill dwarves subsisting largely on fish. The east, where dragons dwell, remains a mystery to many. Some adventure there but not much is known even today of that strange land, past the Gorgoths.
In the north a great leader is born. Jacqueline Kilkreath, the barbarian sage whom it is said made a pact with demons of the lower planes for unspeakable power and cunning though this is likely legend, unites thirty tribes under one bloody banner before her 25th year in the land now called Grattak. She founds as her base and capital Sarrell which stands to this day. After consolidating her base of power in the north she takes and controls the entire northwestern coast from the mouth of the great Ganja to the Urkhards. She is now Empress of the newly founded Kilkreath Empire. Under her hard leadership, the imperial highway is built linking the capital to farms which supply its food and to settlements along the coast which opens secure water trade with tribes in Golgiath and the Dwarves through the city of Riga which is founded in the great cavernous opening of the mouth of underground rivers which the dwarves use to power their forges and travel from Goheim to Farnsall. The economic power of her empire established, she looks to the east and conquers much of the land now known as Fellmoor, founding more trade ports and surveying the land as she goes.
It is in the east, at the base of the northern tip of the Gorgoths that she meets the Drow and the shadowy grey dwarves of the underdark. They supply her with many slaves, human and elves stolen from the east and the forests of Regia. The infrastructure of the Kilkreath empire, much of which still stands to this day is built on their backs using dwarven know how bartered from the great artificers of Argetheim and Goheim.
In the south the elves of Regia establish arcane institutes of learning in their great city and trade with Golgiath, largely ignoring their northern borders which are guarded by dense swampy forests where now stands the Sorak Desert. Golgiath remains a largely peaceful land, some permanent settlements are established on the rivers and coasts but none now stand under their original names if at all. A great magic tradition already exists there, however, in the elusive forest gnomes and their human friends, great hedge wizards and shamans.
In the north, the Kilkreathan empire is racked by their first major tragedy, the death of their terrible Queen. Her son Morrath Kilkreath I takes the throne and looks to prove his mettle as a conqueror. He masses his legions at the northern base of the Urkhards and sends scouts to map the treacherous passes which would allow him access to the fertile lands of Golgiath. It is slow work as the passes are guarded by giants, goblinoid raiders, and a few dragons who have come from the east to take up easy residence. Morrath Kilkreath I dies before he can send his great horde through in ernest and his son Morrath Kilkreath II takes up his father’s cause. Under his leadership the legion makes it’s way through the mountains carving trails through the passes and founding forts at the sight of what is now Fazza and Yoia, trading posts which still handle land trade between Golgiath and Grattak. The legion quickly conquers the disorganized tribes in Golgiath and takes many slaves. After the death of Morrath Kilkreath II his son Morrath Kilkreath III assumes control and the empire enjoys a time of great peace and prosperity trading with the Dwarves and the Elves and building ever more impressive cities and monuments.
The Second Age
At the dawn of the Second Age Kilkreath is plunged into its first major defensive war as a great horde of orcs arises in the East pillaging along the north eastern coasts taking slaves and selling them to the Drow of the Underdark. The horde is defeated on the shores of lake Viran near the city that shares its name. The elves of Regia continue to master magic and sea travel trading with Kilkreath in Golgiath and the Dwarves of the Urkhards making war on their dark cousins, the Drow, whenever they appear in their forests. Golgiath is a stark and unhappy land of slaves under the rule of Kilkreath, Golgiath City is founded to govern the region. Here, in the shadow of the dwarven engineers a great college is founded which still stands. The Dwarven city states dedicate many years to the study of engineering and artifice, taking in many rock gnomes for their labor and craft, and are rewarded with the secret of steam power which they still guard jealously. This brings them great wealth and prosperity under the mountains safe in their strongholds from the machinations of rulers and barbarians above ground.
Morrath Kilkreath XIII dies in the north leaving two sons, Morrath XIV, rightful heir, and Xander Kilkreath, the jealous younger son. Morrath XIV is assassinated with elven blades the night before his coronation, a plot it is now believed was hatched by Xander. Xander takes power and masses an army at the borders with Regia, intent on conquest. The great elven queen Yonalla Zah defends her lands abely and the great legions of Kilkreath have no response to the wood elves hit and run guerrilla tactics. In wicked desperation Xandar turns to his head magical advisor the Imperial Sorceress Tabitha Lestang, an ambitious Green Dragonborn from the east. After many years of research and effort she presents her lord with an answer to the wood elf’s primary advantage, their forests. She demonstrates for him a technique which she believes can be implemented on a grand scale at the front, it is unknown exactly what magic she used but alone in the blink of an eye she blighted and destroyed totally three acres of royal orchards outside Sarrel. The young Emperor was impressed.
Using the lifeforce of many Golgian slaves to power a great ritual which lasted many days at the front, Tabitha unleashed a magical force that was well beyond her ability to understand or control. She disappeared beneath the earth and a huge explosion leveled the forests for miles around, gutted the invasion force, and killed thousands upon thousands of Wood Elves in the trees. This event is still known in Regia as “The Great Sin.” The land between Regia and Kilkreath where once stood grand forests and murky swamps was blighted, within ten years the great Sorak Desert stood in its place. None dared cross it for years after as arcane storms racked and shook the land. Xandar was deposed in favor of a cousin and the line of Jacqueline Kilkreath was broken. The Kilkreath empire was in ruins and limped on for many years before recovering.
Through all this the Dwarves in the Urkhards remained at relative peace with all nations around them, making war on the giants and goblins, safe in their underground kingdoms. Golgiath stirred under the yoke of Kilkreath’s bondage and a great leader was born among the slaves. His name was Oragon Jammas, though he would not take that name until later, a High Elf, born in the slums of Golgiath City to slaves of the great household of the ruling governor of Golgiath. As he came of age, he longed for freedom and organized a small revolt which was very unsuccessful. As his rag tag army was put down he escaped east with a small force fighting and crawling the long way to the forests of Regia where he was welcomed before the Queen Zah. Here he was educated and trained by the wood elves, carved like living wood into a weapon which they could unleash upon their hated enemy. When he returned to Golgiath many decades later he was ready to unleash 500 years of elven hatred upon the empire.
He raised an army in the eastern forests of Golgiath composed of freed slaves and elves and began raiding along the coasts disrupting trade and burning the houses of lords, butchering their guards and freeing their servants who joined his fight. As his horde grew he marched on Golgiath city and laid siege for three years with no end in sight. Though he had secured the easy paths by which reinforcements might arrive to the city he saw no way to break the stalemate. It is here that he showed his brilliance for diplomacy as well as battle in a bold move he contacted the Dwarves of Jaggerheim, a city still loyal to their ancient ally Kilkreath. He suggested to them that Kilkreath was dying, it was only a matter of time. At this point it is known Kilkreath is in major debt to the Dwarven City states which supplied its many armies and kept it limping after Xandar’s disastrous reign. The Dwarves accepted an offer to switch sides, declaring Kilkreath had defaulted on century old debts. They ceased supplying Golgiath City during the siege and bolstered Oragon’s army with many legions of battle hardened dwarven troops which sacked Golgiath City and drove the legions of Kilkreath from the land. The last remnant of their control over the region is the port city of Riga which is still controlled by Grattak, a human kingdom in the north.
Under Oragon’s leadership a new government is founded, led not by a king but by a bureaucracy. Taking cues from the Dwarven merchant cartels as well as Elven philosophers in Regia, Oragon set up a system of trade unions, city councils, courts (which busily tried and executed those governors still left alive), and a central parliament which governed trade with other nations as well as war. Under his leadership the land prospered and trade boomed and the people were free and able to benefit from their toils directly. New institutes of learning are established both arcane and otherwise and Golgiath enjoys a cultural renaissance the likes of which have not been seen since.
As the years went on the storms subsided in the Sorak and men began to appear from the desert, strange and wild men who raided on the plains of Fellmoor and Regia, killing and burning everything in their path. Many tried to establish safe routes through the desert but few could make the dangerous journey. Whispers began to emerge of a new race called Tieflings which populated the area, born of fiends and humans, the tieflings were a dark race which raided with fiendish orcs and the wild men. It is rumored that in the desert sits the ruins of a city, Ikaran, the sight of the ritual which blighted the land on the shores of a great dead lake. From the city, cutting west, runs a great scar upon the land which many say contains the tomb of the great sorceress herself.
Many years later Oragon dies and a new leadership is established peacefully and Golgiath continues to flourish trading with the dwarves and elves. Kilkreath collapses, without the support of its Dwarven patrons the land is divided as two factions fight for power. In the west, house Grattak claims descendance from the Kilkreath line, in the east a Paladin known as St. Julien in the church of Jillaron stirs the population to revolt. War breaks out and the kingdoms of Grattak and Fellmoor are founded. After many years an uneasy peace is reached and the second age comes to a close.
The Third Age (Current)
It has been 400 years since the close of the second age. Fellmoor and Grattak have been at more or less constant war, neither side able to gain advantage over the other. Golgiath has continued to advance in culture and technology. Regia continues more or less as it always has, as have the dwarves. The tribes in the sorak desert have formed alliances with the underdark, transporting slaves across the desert to Grattak. This is where you come in.