The Age of Immortals
The Era of The Elder Gods
Creation of Theras
No one knows where they came from or why they came here, but at some point in time, the Elder Gods arrived in this universe and made it their own. They were four and together commanded supreme mastery of the elements. Arun - the Lord of Fire, blazing but gentle and considerate. His consort Miran - the Mistress of Water, temperamental and unpredictable as the sea, Laulas the Sky father - all embracing but also all possessive and dominating and his consort Enia, the Earth mother, the nurturer and caretaker.
Though the Elder Gods were all of different dispositions, they did not distinguish between any good or evil, seeing as either sprang from their own creation and of their will and likewise their will to undo.
First Enia created the great earth and called it Theras to be her home. Arun then created the blazing Sun and made it his abode. Miran filled the seas and created the moons as her abode to govern its tides. Finally, Laulas filled the great sky and set in it the stars so that others could know its vastness and in these he made his home.
The Spirits are Awakened
Wanting to share their creation with others, the four Elder Gods awakened spirits with a life of their own. From Enia came their spirit, from Arun the energy to fuel their lives, from Laulas freedom to act of their own accord and from Miran the power to change and grow. For a long time, these formless spirits inhabited the land.
The Spirits Are Given Form
Though the Elder Gods were happy with what they had wrought, they felt their creations could still achieve more if capable of assuming form as they themselves could. And so they offered the immortal spirits timeless forms to inhabit. These spirits graciously accepted the gift from their creators and went to the God they aligned themselves with most.
Those loyal to Arun the Fire Lord not only fiery all-destructive breath, but great power within themselves. From his consort Miran they were given the power of change over their surroundings. Thus were created the dragons.
Those loyal to Laulas the Sky King were given great wings and splendorous visage. From his consort Enia, they received the vitality of the cycle of the earth. Thus were born the Phoenix, rulers of the sky.
Those loyal to Miran the Moon Lady were given freedom to change according to their own whim. From her consort Arun, they were given the raw power and energy that comes from fire. Thus were born the changeling Sorcen.
Those loyal to Enia desired no form and pleaded merely to nurture and care for the earth. Not wanting them to receive any less than the servants of the other Elder Gods she created the animals of the world in all guises and shapes for them to care for and nurture. Laulas wanting to share his gifts gave wings to some of these, giving life to birds, insects and other avial animals.
Thus the Elder Races were born. And for a long time they inhabited and ruled the land in timeless harmony.
The Era of the Young Gods
The Young Gods are born
Yet, despite the splendour of their creations the Elder gods saw that for all the majesty none of these spirits and beings had the power of creation in them as they did. They were powerful but they knew only how to change what had been made, they could not bring forth things on their own accord. And so for the first time, the Elder Gods sacrificed part of their own essence to create offspring that were truly of their own kin, endowed with the same creative forces as they themselves were.
From the union of Arun and Miran came Eliril, blind from birth, but endowed with a vision of justice, discerning right and wrong, good and evil, true and false. In order that she may watch over the world to dispense this, her mother gave her the lesser moon as an eye to watch over Theras with.
From the union of Laulas and Enia sprang Hefastos, the Hunter and Ward. Sharing his mother’s love of the earth and his father’s passion and wildness, he is at one time protector of the creatures of the earth and the Hunter that passionately stalks them as prey to keep the cycle going. In keeping with his shifting tempers, he was likewise given dominion over the weather in all its aspects.
The Elder Gods then joined hands with each others’ consorts in order to create a sister pair:
From the joined hands of Arun and Enia sprung Miriel the Spring Lady, the embodiment of beauty, love and fertility. With mastery of the coming and re-awakening of life as symbolised by the spring, she received dominion of all things newly born.
When Laulas and Miran joined hands Serade, the Autumn Lady, appeared. Timeless and beautiful, impassionate and sterile, Serade was opposite to everything Miriel stood for. To her was given mastery of aging, decay and death. Since only her hand could stop the passing of these laws, she likewise held dominion over resurrection as she alone held the keys to the kingdom of death.
Next Arun and Laulas joined hands and from this rose Baran, the Smith, who delighted in creation, invention and design in all things.
Finally, from the hands of Miran and Enia sprang Astias the Silver-tongued. A creature of chance, randomness, luck and misfortune, he was likewise endowed with a persuasion and charm that could serve any purpose. Thus, he was simultaneously master of diplomacy, articulation and arbitration, as well as deception, trickery and dishonesty.
In order to give the young gods room to unfold their creative power, the Elder Gods created the realm of Edras separate from Theras and there left the Young Gods to envision a world of their own, the same way the Elder Gods had done with Theras.
The Second Generation of Gods
Baran, feeling lonely, took to the forge to create a worthy companion for himself. But try as he might, he could not animate his splendid creation alone. Eliril, hearing his troubles, went to his forge and laid her hands on his creation. Thus Estaran the sage came to life and Baran found a worthwhile companion in the god of knowledge and learning to complement his unquenchable drive for creativity.
When Eliril and Baran saw what they had wrought, they rejoiced together and became consorts, giving life to Beldir, god of commerce and wealth and Elonis the noble cavalier.
For a time, Miriel gave her heart to the assertive Hunter Hefastos and they gave birth to Arvild the volatile Winter Queen, whilst Serade and Astias, bored from their solitude dabbled briefly with each other, giving birth to Yolaie, the beautiful goddess of secrets, temptation, lust and seduction.
Miriel and Hefastos eventually became estranged from one another though and out of spite, Hefastos took her sister Serade as his consort, who happily fanned the flames of her sister’s jealousy.
In their passionate but brief relationship, for they soon realised their demanding tempers were not compatible, Hefastos and Serade bore two children: Harion, the wrathful warrior and Shagra, miscarried at birth; she survived nonetheless as the goddess of disease, rot and pain.
During this time, Miriel was courted by Astias. The Silver-tongued kindled the heart of the Spring Lady, and they loved much, a relationship continuing to this day. From this love sprang Niela the minstrel, god of joy, song, festivity, freedom and summer and Elenda the gentle goddess of peace, solitude and wisdom.
The Shaping of Edras
Just as the Elder Gods had created Theras in their own image, the young gods set about shaping the god lands of Edras to their own vision.
The Sacrifice of Enia / Awakening of the Phaerie
On Theras, the Elder Gods began to come to a frightening conclusion. In giving life to the young gods, they had stretched their powers too far. Theras and all its inhabitants were slowly dying, suffering from the lack of sustaining essence the Elder Gods nourished them with, their spirit being slowly drained and consumed by simply being alive. Laulas, beginning to feel disenchanted with what had come of their creation, suggested they undo it and start over. Enia however, suggested an alternative. Asking for parts of the essence of the other Elder Gods to draw into herself and to be returned when she returned to them, she promised them that not only would she ensure the survival of their creation, but make it more splendid than before. What the other Elder Gods did not anticipate was that the Earth Mother so loved her creation, that she would sacrifice herself for it. And so, she gave up her own life to empower Theras with her own sprit as well as the parts of the essence of the other Elder Gods she had received. Thus, the very land itself came alive and from this, the beings of Theras could sustain themselves.
As she sacrificed herself to give life to Theras, a new class of beings spontaneously appeared on Theras. Magical creatures, protectors and caretakers of the living land; they were the Phaerie, children of the earth. The remaining Elder Gods, distraught that one of their own should be no more, retreated from the world to contemplate how their creation had brought mortality even to themselves.
The Appearance of Magic / Rise of the Sorcen
One thing that quickly became apparent after the sacrifice of the Earth Mother, was that not only had the land been given life, it was also brimming with a new source of power unlike any other force seen before, a power that allowed those who wielded it mastery over things in all shapes and aspects. From the essence of Elder Gods, the gift of magic had been imparted to the creatures of Theras.
The first to explore this new gift in depth were the Sorcen and they quickly demonstrated an aptitude for this Gift more so than any of the other beings of Theras. It wasn’t long before these first arcane masters subdued the other creatures of Theras and claimed it as their own.
The young gods looked upon the events that followed in the wake Enia’s sacrifice with both jealousy and alarm. Jealousy that such a splendid gift should belong to the Elder races and not themselves, the chosen of the Elder Gods and their true kin. Alarm that the Sorcen who had most readily embraced the gift continued to grow in power, to the extent that the young gods began to fear the Sorcen would grow more powerful than themselves and eventually vanquish them. Fearing and coveting the immense power of the Sorcen, the young gods abandoned the god lands of Edras to wage war upon the Sorcen.
Despite the immense power of the young gods, the Sorcen showed that they would not easily be defeated and held their ground furiously. Mountains were toppled, fertile plains razed to barren deserts as Theras shook with the tremor of the clash between this most powerful race of magic-users and the divine gods. Although battles were won and lost on both sides, it appeared a stalemate was growing more and more likely as the Sorcen proved themselves the equals of the chosen of the Elder Gods.
The ones who were to turn the tide were the dragons. Receiving promise from the young gods that no other creatures on Theras would their equals if they would side with them, the dragons joined the fray and turned on their brethren with devastating results. The Sorcen were defeated and all but a few destroyed so that no one might threaten the supremacy of the gods again.
Pact of Balance / Creation of the Mortal Races
With the Godswar over and the rage of battle settled the young gods surveyed Theras and were aghast at the price of their victory. Theras, the creation of their own creators, was in ruins, the land ached from its wounds so much they gods feared it might never recover and they repented. Counselling among themselves how to redeem themselves, the gods deferred to the judgement of Eliril. The goddess of justice, in what they called the Pact of Balance, decreed that if the promise of such power could incite such devastation, let no one possess it. Thus it was ruled that the gods would settle in Edras and never enter Theras in their true form again, under penalty of destruction. From there, they devoted their power to nurture Theras back to its former splendour and as the earth regenerated, so the gods’ love for Theras grew. Though they could not possess it themselves, they nonetheless wanted to give their powers of creation to shape Theras even more so.
Thus the gods set about to create new races to populate Theras. The young gods did not possess the raw elemental power of the Elder Gods though and so, their creations were mortal, fated to suffer sickness and old age and eventually to die from this.
The Era of Mortals
The Black Plague - The Young Gods Betrayed
When the Elder Gods eventually returned, they were shocked at how their creation had turned out. Instead of mimicking them and creating a world of their own, the young gods had defiled their creation with their own vision, changing it so as to be almost unrecognisable to the Elder Gods. The Sorcen were all but gone, dragons and phoenixes rare and hiding in the far corners of the world that had been given for them to rule. Instead, they found the world dominated by elves and dwarves, mortal races, battling for supremacy. Miran in particular, enraged that her favoured children, the Sorcen, should be wiped out by the young gods, wanted revenge. She allied herself with Laulas who was increasingly embittered that his consort Enia should have sacrificed herself for this. Furthermore, the Sky father believed Enia had not truly died and remembering her promise that their essence would be returned to them when she returned, he believed that if their creation should be undone, his consort would return to him.
Not wanting to attract the attention of the young gods, they devised a curse to inflict upon the mortal races that would be their undoing. And so, the beastman curse was bestowed upon Theras. Transforming the races of elves, dwarves, giants and men into foul abominations, the curse spread with every contact the new beastmen made with others.
Arun, ever the contemplative, kept his own council and watched in silence.
The War of Darkness
It was not long before the dwarves and elves ended their skirmishes to concentrate on a new foe. The races of goblins, orcs, bugbears and trolls had appeared from nowhere and soon swarmed the world in huge numbers, taking over cities and kingdoms and infesting them too with the beastmen plague. A dark empire that only added the numbers of the defeated to their own ranks soon threatened to wipe out the mortal races.
The Sun King’s Counsel
When the young gods saw what happened and could discover no cause of the plague nor a way to stop it, they were distraught. Aid was to come from an unexpected place however, as the Sun King confided in his daughter Miriel of the betrayal of his fellow Elder Gods. Like Enia, Arun had grown to love his godly children and did not want their dreams destroyed, nor his own creation, the dragons, destroyed with them.
With Arun’s counsel, the young gods found a way to stop the beastman plague from spreading further and with the contamination halted, the mortal races now found new hope in the fight against the Blackfolk as the races of goblins, orcs, bugbears and trolls had come to be known.
The Coming of Tarun
The Moon Lady, enraged that her plot had been foiled, grew even more relentless. Determined to infest the mortal races, she brought the curse of lycanthropy upon them, forcing them to bestiality according to the whims of her moon.
And from a place beyond the world, her cry of rage was heard and met with a subtle whisper. Seeking more allies, she summoned the whisper to her aid and drew in Tarun from the other side. Neither alive nor dead, the hateful whisperer presented Miran with a vision for her to torment the mortal races further, denying them both life and death as it had been denied him. And thus, the two gods bestowed the curse of the undead upon Theras, to combat the mortal races.
The Fall of Miran
When the Young Gods saw the fury with which the Moon Lady attacked their creation, they endeavoured to put a stop once and for all to this threat. Using the persuasion of Astias, they lured her into a trap in which Hefastos, Harion and Elonis together stalked her and split her into three parts. Every part was sealed in a prison made by Baran and thrown respectively into the deepest ocean, her moon, and the last part kept in their own home of Edras in the god lands, so that she might never defile Theras again.
A New Celestial Order
Arun, disenchanted with his children and how their creation had turned out for him to also lose his consort, declared that Theras was for the young gods to govern as they saw fit. He withdrew into his home in the sun and from thereon tended to no affairs with either gods or mortals in Theras and Edras, except to hear the calls of his creations not fallen from grace – the dragons.
Laulas likewise, denounced his children and their work, but did not withdraw from the world. Determined more than ever to undo creation and return his consort to life, he hid himself among the stars where no god could find him. Nonetheless, he had learned from the failure of Miran’s volatile approach to embrace means of subtlety to further his aims, so that the same fate should never befall him as it had done Miran.
Tarun, who Serade more than anything wanted banished, for he alone had the power to deny her subjects entirely in her kingdom of death, pleaded to the Young Gods that he, like them, had answered the call of the Elder Gods to contribute to creation and it was not given to them to approve or deny him this right. Recalling the Pact of Balance, they allowed him to stay, but nevertheless, Tarun has remained an outcast among gods to this day.