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History of the Races

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History of the Races

Post by Ronson on Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:02 pm

Hate Gives Rise To Another Superior Race!

Chapter 1: A Necessary Journey.

Long ago, before the world above was rocked and Luclin was shattered, the gods of Norrath walked this plane. They gave birth to a myriad of races. All of which were pitiful and in need of coddling, save one - Innoruuk's Teir'Dal! They were ruthless, sinister, cunning, and dangerous. They were the very embodiment of His hate! For thousands of years they fulfilled his bidding and adhered to his tenets.

Then came the years of his absence. But this did not mean the end of the great Teir'Dal empire! The Dark Prince had left the Teir'Dal his words - seeds of disdain that grew darker within them. Those seeds were then taken up and nurtured by Queen Cristanos the of Teir'Dal. She guided the empire and strengthened it even in times of isolation.

But not all Teir'Dal are strong. Some showed weaknesses during this time and feel out of favor for speaking blasphemies about Her Ever-darkness, The Queen. Some attempts were even made upon her blessed life. The traitorous ones were all dealt with, slowly and agonizingly, but it made Her Unholyness angry and distrustful of other Teir'Dal.

If she were to focus on the prosperity of Neriak and the entire Teir'Dal empire then she must have an army of allegiant warriors by her side! On a mission of secrecy a band of Teir'Dal traveled from Nrriak to the disdained lands of Faydwer. There they were able to acquire, through clandestine acts, fae spirit blossoms.

Chapter 2: The Circle of Hate and Creation.

Queen Cristanos performed dark and beautifully abhorrent magics upon the captured spirit blossoms. She would allow them birth, and then torture them with unspeakable acts. After the inevitably painful deaths, she would perform further sadistic magics upon the resulting spirit blossoms. Over and over, the cycle of birth, torment and death continued, thus molding them into something new - something superior to the fae by far!

Chapter 3: Wings of Fate.

The wings of the fae turned out to be too fragile to withstand the violent acts. Time and time again, during Queen Cristanos' tainting of the blossoms, the creatures were formed with withered and broken wings. She knew this to be an opportunity to further remove them from the appearance of the pitiful fae, and to embody them with characteristics of creatures associated with such blissful aspects as decay and darkness.

Through further delightful twisting, she adapted the wings of dank cave creatures such as bats and moths for her malignant children. But even to this day, a few arasai are born without wing or with wings too damaged to allow flight. As a result they are granted arcane constructed wings on which they can still glorify Her Darkness in deed and word.

Chapter 4: Living in The City of Hate.

The arasai are now just as Queen Cristanos wanted. They are physical embodiments of undying devotion for their creator and goddess, with a penchant for dark magics and pain. She has arisen as a tangible goddess upon this plane and deserves to be exalted as such, by all!

History of the Fae
This is a history of the Fae. Its pages cannot be completed at one time, but must be gained through valor and experience.

Tunare, Goddess of nature, gave us life. As she walked through Greater Faydark, flowers sprung up beneath her feet. One of these flowers turned its face toward her as a heliotrope to the sun. "You are precious," said Tunare, laughing and gently cupping the blossom in her hands. And so, the first Fae were formed of blossoms and Tunare's laughter. That was the beginning of the Dream Ring, the first Ring in which the Fae realized that their lives were indeed precious.

Life was quiet for the Fae in those distant times. One of the Fae learned the language of the Feir´┐ŻDal, our brothers and sisters of Tunare. In time, all Fae learned some Feir'Dal words and added them to our own language, Faerlie. And Joleena took her new language skills into Kelethin, the city of the Feir'Dal. She lives amongst them for a time and when she returned, we made her our first Queen.

Our people had often lived in small bands, roving through the Faydarks. We recognized that we had much in common with the Feir'Dal, and so over time, many of the Fae migrated to live near the trees which formed its base. Many of the Fae died in the Burning Ring, when the armies of the War of Fay crossed the woods, burning everything before them.

Those who were not killed were horrified. We had never witnessed so much death and destruction! And though emissaries were sent to Felwithe, the Koada'Dal sent no help. Much of Greater Faydark and Kelethin were burned, yet the First Children did nothing. Instead, they closed themselves away once the War had ended. And so began the Ring of Sadness.

We heped the Feir'Dal rebuild Kelethin. Who else had they to turn to but the Fae? Queen Cydney oversaw our contributions, channeling our Fae magic to heal the trees and restore the Faydarks to beauty. We mourned, for Queen Cydney's spirit bud, holding all her memories and experiences, was lost to us forever.

Each Fae is formed from the spirit bud of one of the ancestors. By maintianing the blossom, the Fae can reawaken its spirit and remember threads from the distant past. Many of us who can recall the Ring of Sadness prefer to remember the Quiet Ring that followed it instead, for the Age of War did not touch Kelethin until later.

As the gods seemed to withdraw from us, the Fae's magical influences seemed to wane as well. Through we had moved away from Kelethin itself, remembering the Burning Ring, Queen Saphrina encouraged us to move back. "There are dark forces everywhere," she said. "It will be safer for us to join with the Feir'Dal before it is too late." And so we did, building a wall of brambles to keep the city safe.

The Crushbone orcs proved Queen Saphrina right they took her life and destroyed her spirit bud. This was truly the First Ring of Chaos. Deterred by the thick brambles we had raised beneath the city, the orcs laid siege to Kelethin, never envisioning from which direction our help would come.

They crept in from Lesser Faydark, an army of brownies, and decimated the Crushbone orcs. They had never been our particular allies before, rescuing us had been incidental to their love of battle. Queen Jillian granted them the status "Friend of the Fae" from that moment onward. The siege was broken, yet the wars raging around us did not cease. Nor did the orcs let up their attempted assault on the city.

An uneasily peaceful time followed the Ring of Leaving. In a very short span of time, we witnessed some of the remaining Feir'Dal and others leave Faydwer. They spoke of receiving a vision, a word from Tunare. And as time went on, we let the brambles protecting Kelethin dissipate as we moved into the city ourselves.

We thought that troubles times lay behind us now, yet the Ring of Trials had only begun. All around us the lands began to change, groaning and breaking apart. Built into the trees, Kelethin withstood the trembling earth below. We felt we were being tested, but had no way of knowing if we had passed.

The last trial was the death of our young, beautiful Queen Liivika, just two days before her wedding, leaving the Fae to mourn yet again. Some began to question how Tunare could leave us. Others argued that she had not left, that we simply needed to learn how to live like the Feir'Dal. We Fae lost some of our innocence, but we know that we are not alone. Our spirits tell us this.

Changes were wrought, some not as obvious as the madly swirling seas and others very evident. We were growing taller and the shapes and colors of our wings began to differ. The Ring of Regrowth marked a period of rapid changes amongst the Fae. Sadly, during this time two of our Queens disappeared and we were unable to recover their spirits.

The Second Ring of Chaos began with what Outsiders call the Shattering. Shards of Luclin rained down around Faydwer, but fortunately, most of Greater Faydark escaped unscathed. A few of Kelethin's platforms caught fire and burnt, though most of the city was untouched. Queen Sephria and later her daughter Queen Kilina were both killed by the rain of debris which stopped as suddenly as it had started.

Some days, we wondered what had become of those who had left Faydwer. Where did they go? Did they perish in the Second Ring of Chaos? Would we ever see them or their kin again? For our spirits continued to renew and continued to remember. And then ships arrived as well as parties crossing into Greater Faydark from elsewhere, and we knew that times were changing. Again.

Thus began the Peaceful Ring, which continues to the present. Given our history, we wonder Peaceful for how long? Queen Oola oversaw the rebuilding of the parts of Kelethin that had been destroyed and left the city to her daughter Amree, our current Queen. Who knows what our future holds, now that Outsiders come once again to Faydwer?

Paying Homage to the Past
Untold ages ago, the Faceless One, Cazic-Thule, placed us upon the lands of Kunark. Scattered and unlearned, we were enslaved by the terrible snake-like Shissar with their curses and wicked enchantments! At last one day the skies opened up and the sacred Green Mist delivered us from our enemies. Unaffected by the mist, we watched as our captors melted away. In the midst of a cacophony of screams of terror and anguish the iksar were freed. Today we remember the destruction of our oppressors by desecrating an article of their creation.

Over the centuries, many tribal states were established as we spread across Kunark. It was one iksar, Venril Sathir, whose knowledge of battle and necromancy allowed him to conquer and annex all the tribe-states. Using the might of the united tribes and the slaves of conquered lesser races, the mighty fortress of Sebilis was built. Imposing and beautiful, Sebilis was a place of learning and lore where for many long years we honed our skills and thrived. Under Sathir's rule as the first King of Sebilis, he established the great Sebilisian Empire. The jealous dragons, however, saw our greatness and knew we posed a threat to them.

The meddling dragon known as Trakanon was not content to leave us alone. Through his treachery, he turned our servants against us and led a group of his kind to Sebilis and destroyed it! Many iksar were slain then and we honor them by lighting a funeral pyre from the remains of iksar slain in these times.

During the time of the Rending our beloved Kunark was beset by terrible earthquakes and the Lake of Ill Omen flooded the city of Cabilis. It was during these times that a large sailing vessel carrying many of our kind to lands far away was smashed by a massive wave. Many survived this tragedy by swimming to the shores of a nearby island.

For nearly a year the survivors lived on that island until the Overlord caught wind of their presence. After a series of fierce battles he captured the survivors, brought them back to Freeport and tried to enslave them! Years passed, but despite the Overlord's best efforts, he could not break their spirits.

As the Rallosian army spread across all of Norrath, the Overlord knew he could not repel these aggressors without our help. In exchange for our freedom, we fought valiantly alongside Freeport's own army and crushed the Rallosians with the help of the same Green Mist that had killed our former oppressors, the Shissar! Today we remember our brief captivity and toss the Overlord's tools of oppression to the bottom of the sea, where they can never be used to hinder the mighty iksar.

The History of Barbarians

Story 1

Listen to my tale! It is the story of brave men and strong women. I tell you the story of the barbarian people. WE are the sons and daughters of Mithaniel Marr, god of Valor, and Erollisi Marr, goddess of Love.

Our name struck fear into the hearts of those who came before us. They were weak while we were strong! Consider Barruk, who carried many times ten of the elves, who swing helpless from his arms as he strode with his mighty axe through their ranks!

They said we brought the Age of Blood - - and we did. The weaker trembled to see the children of the Northlands descend upon them. Though we are mighty of height, we can arrive unheard and unseen, until it was too late.

It was not any mortal that could stop us. No! Called they upon Solusek Ro, who needed to change the shape of the world. Even that did not stop us, but by then we had shown our might to the world and felt no need to go further.

And then, one night the Marr Twins came to Halas and walked around our fire. They kissed the foreheads of twelve sturdy lads and twelve hearty maidens, then sent them southwards with their blessing. From them came our cousins, the humans.

Story 2

I am Nicholl Silverfrost of Clan MacNeacail, bard. Our family has ever served as bard for our Clan, for which the Marr Twins be praised! Our Clan is mighty, though not of Halas, which had been its fortune in the days of the Rallosians.

For, listen! While the families of the barbarian Clans did their respective duties, Gren Silverfrost traveled from our village in Everfrost to sing in Halas and it was he who spied the first of the Orcish armies sent to the assault.

Gren sped forth, his anger lending wings to his heels. He saw the orcs burning other villages. He saw them feasting on the fallen. He reached Halas in time for the gates to be barred from within. To warn the villages, Gren and others as fleet of foot were sent out. Those who fled the villages closest to Halas went there. Those farther away removed to other strongholds. And the orcs marched onward, surrounding Halas.

Halas fell at the end of the long and bitter siege. The Rallosians celebrated by slaying the remaining clan chieftains and sending the women and children into the wilds where there were hunted for sport. And yet, we still had hope.

Yes, many of our folk had fled into Halas and were slain. But the Clans from furthest strongholds arrived and gathered the wandering remnants of our brethren, vowing vengeance. They made themselves secure in their hidden ancestral areas and waited.

Story 3

We did not have long to wait. Within seasons, the Rallosian Army was defeated by a mysterious and deadly poison known as the Green Mist. We retook Halas and made a bonfire with our enemies? remains.

Was it retribution for all the bloodshed? No one knows. And yet, not long after the Rallosians were defeated, the lands began to groan and crack from deep within. Fires burned where there had been ice. Water flowed fast and deep where once it trickled. I speak of the Age of Cataclysms, where we saw in one generation the lands change from ice and snow to bogs that stank of decay.

Overnight, entire mountains would slide away, taking with them the houses at their feet. Then all would freeze again into impenetrable ice. As though the changes upon the surface of Norrath were not enough, Luclin shattered in the sky above. Rocks of all sizes fell from like rain, battering everything in their path. From what cover we could find, we watched as Halas fell. Ah, Halas! Rocks aflame topple the walls, crushing and burning our ancestral home. It took the terrible shattering of the moon to do what no army could ever hope to do ? take and keep Halas for its own.

Our world lay encased in a layer of ice that crept over the land. In the day, the ice retreated like an orc, but at night it pressed further and further, conquering all before it like a barbartian.

Listen! I tell you of our journey southwards, our proud march to settle in a new home. The way may be perilous, but not for the sons and daughters of the north! Our steps filled with snow behind us while before us, we saw the world.

The History of Dwarves

Story 1

There is nothing like the smell of the forge, is there? I love the crash of hammer on iron, the tang of metal on the tip of the tongue. There is joy in working with one's hands, and that is what dwarves do best.

We were created by Brell Serilis, who discovered Norrath and brought us into being. Some say he had other purposes in mind, but we dwarves know that he was -- and is -- our creator and bringer of life.

Stone and rock. Hammer and anvil. We learned our crafts from the beginning, in our home of Kaladim, in the Butcherblock Mountains. Our city flourished, for many came to us, wanting to buy the many beautiful things we can craft.

Have you ever seen the sun rise, its light spreading like over the Butcherblock mountains like the flames of a forge? We who have not seen this with our own eyes sing the songs of our fathers before us, and weep for the world we cannot know.

You might hear of the Northmen boasting of their brawn. They are certainly very strong, for their size. Put any barbarian up in a feat of strength against a dwarf and you will find that we are equally strong. Many is the enemy who thought to judge us by our size, to their own doom.

Story 2

Through many long Ages, we plied our crafts as armorers and weaponsmiths. Even now, if you see a family with a treasured heirloom, there is a good chance it was made by a dwarf. Be it stone or metal, we can shape it at will.

Take a look at a dwarven beard. These forms go back to ancient days, when the first dwarf rulers bestowed upon dwarven heroes a particular style for their family's use. It's bad luck to use someone else's style.

There are not so many female dwarves as male dwarves, it is true. There is no equal among the other folk -- you can't deny how good-looking our women-folk are! They are strong and stout-hearted as well. You have heard of the Ironforge family of Qeynos, no doubt. While our weapons are matchless, we are also good with items of the hearth and home. Long have dwarves worked alongside others to fill the world with beautiful handiwork.

We did not escape the Wars that raged around us unscathed. Dwarven troops fought alongside our elven and human friends. When all seemed lost, we did not give up. Give up? Those words are not in our blood.

There is an old expression that says it is darkest before the hammer strikes. With our allies, we passed through some dark times. Then the hammer of the gods fell and behold! Our enemies dissolved like smoke before us.

Story 3

And yet, there were still dark times ahead, though we didn't know it then, of course. You see, we started the rebuilding of the Qeynos. More and more dwarves arrived from Kaladim, eager to show our skills as well as honor our friendships. Had we known?we would still have done the same.

There was plenty of work to do, from rebuilding walls to reinforcing buildings. And then came tremors from deep below. The rocks beneath us groaned in ways we dwarves had never heard before -- and hope to never hear again. The world around us ripped apart and the seas became impassable. There are tales of dwarves that lived during the Rending shouldering their axes and hammers, trying to return home. Those that left Antonica were never seen again.

The face of the world changed, new rocks turned up on the surface that had only been seen in the deeps. And when we thought things were calm, Luclin exploded across the sky, like an apple hit by an arrow. Many's the time dwarves would pass on the streets of Qeynos and say, "Tomorrow, in Kaladim!" It was our pledge to one another, that we would return home. Then "tomorrow" became "next week" and "next season," until we stopped using this greeting altogether.

We will return to our home, there is no doubt! But it is hard to explain constantly to our friends why we believe that Brell has not forsaken us and exactly what we expect to find left of the Butcherblock Mountains. Just because everyone else has given up their faith is no reason for us to lose ours.

And so, the dwarves who came to Qeynos to help strengthen it after the wars were able to rebuild it once the stone rain stopped falling. That may be part of Brell's plan, that we would not be sundered from our friends in their hour of need. Stone and rock. Hammer and anvil. Qeynos is beautiful again with our help. Somewhere, our brethren are rebuilding the city of our ancestors, too. And we will return to our homes there. Tomorrow, in Kaladim.

The History of Erudites

Story 1

When one realizes in the course of events that one's surroundings are unable to provide the necessary solitude for research, one realizes that the only option available is removal to a distant locale. Preferably an isolated area, free from unwanted intrusion.

Gathering around him those of similar persuasion, Erud led a group of his disciples across the sea to Odus. While not perfect, the isolation was perfect for our purposes. We managed to eradicate most of the indigenous species that would interfere with our research.

We built the city of Erudin in a form of homage to the one who led us to this oasis from the intellectual desert of Tunaria. The design was elegant and clean, not cluttered with the furbelows favored by the elves. An uncluttered space allows the opening of one's mind.

Time is not counted when one is lost in thought. Have you ever been deeply engrossed in a philosophical tome only to realize that the risen sun was now setting beyond you? That is how the days were spent in Erudin. Long days of contemplation and blissful solitude.

Somewhere during this period of tranquility, a subsect had obtained access to arcane knowledge commonly known as necromancy. These injudicious Erudites turned to Cazic-Thule for learning. Seeking knowledge is preferable to ignorance, yet some things should not be learned.

Story 2

Unable to convince them of their errors, the erudites of Erudin cast these Heretics out. The Heretics chose not to return to more appropriate branches of learning. Instead, they waged war against Erudin, using the perverted arcane arts to unleash a torrent of horrors upon our city. Obviously unable to control themselves, the Heretics released powers greater than they could control, blasting the lands and creating The Hole. Realizing they could not win, yet unwilling to admit their errors, the Heretics constructed a city within the devastation: Paineel.

What we now know of Paineel comes long after its destruction. For yes, once more the Heretics sought to unleash a power they had no means of understanding or containing. What dark evil they awoke, they will not say, but the Heretics were forced to rebuild Paineel elsewhere.

Age upon age drifted past, a time of gloriously deep thought for the erudite. Undisturbed by outsiders, we endeavored to increase our considerable knowledge even further. Our minds were free to explore uncharted depths within and without. Some learned to travel through space by the force of thoughts alone.

In this era of most profound intellectuality, we learned deeper, higher meanings to things encountered previously. Hours could we spend staring at a single element, focusing ourselves until we could break it apart with our minds, reducing it to even smaller elements still.

In and through our minds and veins flowed this increased awareness. There is nothing more relaxing than to consider a mote suspended in a shaft of light and knowing of what the mote is made and how one can recreate it into other fantastical shapes.

Story 3

In time, our studies began to manifest themselves outwardly upon our own persons. When one has the knowledge to bend and reshape the smallest of elements, why should one not use this to one's advantage? We experimented further. Through the judicious blend of meditation and incantation, we are able to layer upon ourselves physical manifestations of our intellect. We practiced first with simple geometric shapes, and through our research extended this to runes that glow with inner power.

By this time, we had nearly forgotten the outside world even existed. If it could not be experienced through the mind, it had no place in our lives. And then first to one, and then to another, Quellious appeared in dreams, speaking of the cities of men. We had long since rejected Qeynos as a place of infidels, noisy and crowded. Yet, the Word was given that we should return there. Very likely, these simpletons needed to be shown that higher intellectual power is possible, even for them.

Those who trusted to the Word arrived none too soon, for our ship had barely docked at their primitive outpost when the earth beneath us trembled and rolled. For many long years the earth shook violently, finally tearing Tunaria (that which the humans call Antonica) apart. Obviously, we could not live amongst the noisy, filthy riffraff of Qeynos. As the world around them fell to pieces, instead of investigating and studying, they raced around shrieking! It was difficult to find any quiet place to work.

One of our bards wrote a song about how the screaming of the mortals found its way to Luclin, causing it to shatter like a wine glass before a soprano. It is an amusing tale, but unfortunately we cannot depart to Luclin to determine the exact cause of the explosion. It is quite frustrating; these townsfolk are quite boisterous.

In time, we solved our dilemma by removing to a more isolated area near the city and yet outside of its clamor. This is not perfect, we can still smell them, but it allows us some measure of sanity to continue our work. We understand some of the Heretics have made their home outside Freeport as well.

The History of Gnomes

Story 1

As we like to joke with our stouter dwarf cousins, Brell finally got things right when he made us! You have to pick who you say this to, though, as apparently not all dwarves have a sense of humor. You have to watch out for those who enjoy the joke, too, because a dwarven back-slap can be potent.

We gnomes are not very interested in history for its own sake. We do like to think about it from time to time because you can learn so much from someone else's mistakes, but we don't dwell on it. The elves kind of take that a bit far, you know, living through past glory.

What we do miss about the old days are the inventions of the ancestors in Ak'Anon. But that's getting ahead of history, isn't it? Since you've just started reading this, you can hardly already know that we no longer live on Faydwer, can you? Except that I just told you!

Our ancestral home is Ak'Anon, as mentioned, and it was devoted to tinkering and building, and discussions of building and tinkering. There is nothing a gnome enjoys more than building something if it's not thinking about it or telling someone else how it works.

Gnomes have a great reputation for tinkering and talking about it. Way back when, the Academy of Arcane Science called upon some of our best minds to devise standards of measurement that are still used today as the Norrathian Code of Trade Standards.

Story 2

One thing I've always wanted to see with my own eyes is the Cog of Precision. One of the Wobblecog ancestors made it out of pure platinum specifically so that any quibbles about the size of one sprocket or another could be compared to it. If it survived, it's probably still at the Academy. There I go again, spoiling the ending for you!

On the other hand, you wouldn't be reading this if your family hadn't survived the Rending and the Shattering, and I'm sure they've told you all about it, right? So you already know that there's some things we don't know have made it through! If you've ever been to Qeynos, you've surely seen the grand Clock of Ak'Anon. It was a gift to the Bayle family long ago for helping us out.

You'll have to ask one of them what it is that they did, all we remember about it is that the clock was one of our finest clockworks. We gnomes love clockwork, and not just the kind that run clocks. From our earliest times, we've created some marvelous bits that run on their own, with just a bit of winding now and then. Some of our productions are so magnificent that we'll finish it up and stare at it in awe ourselves.

In times of war, we never shirk our duty. If there's enough advance notice, why, we can whip together a clockwork army to serve as vanguard! For example during the War of Fay, we were in the bad position of having to defend ourselves simply because we were there. Talk about being between a flizgig and a hard place!

There were several clockwork creations at that battle, but no one talks about them now because they were frankly less than successful. Still, one can learn from one's mistakes, right? We started to ... but then, you won't be interested in all that. Never mind.

Story 3

Every young gnome dreams of the day they reach flibberty. That's the time when they have to make their very own clockwork gibbet (working). Of course, from the time we're taking our first steps, we've had a cog in one hand and a lever in the other.

The flibberty piece, or gibbet, is created to show that a young gnome is ready to enter the adult world and can take on mechanamagical works without supervision. My own piece was a clockwork beehive that would open up when clockwork bees returned to it with nectar.

With so much importance on this one piece, we do tend to talk about them a lot. In fact, you might hear folks talk about "some flibberty gibbet" when they mean someone who has a tendency to chatter. Well, now you know where that term comes from, my friend!

Back in Ak'Anon, we kept a lot of our reference materials in the Library Mechanamagica. How I wish I could page through some of those tomes! My grandfather talked about the Encyclopedia that could turn its own pages. A clockwork encyclopedia, of course!

All that stuff is probably still in Ak'Anon. Of course we haven't been able to get to it since the Rending, when the whole world shook crazily, like a clockwork magicycle. If we could get our?but you won't want to hear the details. It would just be nice to get home.

The History of Halflings

Story 1

When the gods decided to place folk on Norrath, we halflings were the most fortunate folk, created by Fizzlethorpe Bristlebane, the King of Thieves. And what a great place he put us, in our beloved Rivervale.

We named it Rivervale as a river flowed through the soft-sloped hills that eventually rose into higher and narrower clefts that kept us safe. To one reach Rivervale, you had to pass through either the Kithicor Forest or the Misty Thicket, neither of which was forgiving to the unwary.

Beyond the Misty Thicket, you see, lay the home of a particularly foul band of goblins -- Runnyeye Citadel. Nasty folk and a nasty place, that's for sure. While they weren't very bright, they were certainly very annoying.

On the other side there was Kithicor Forest, a darker and much more sinister place. Our legends had it that in the beginnings of time, Cazic-Thule tripped over a root jutting out from the forest floor and put an awful curse on the whole place! True as I'm breathing!

The halflings of Rivervale and Misty Thicket created a really cozy place in the world. While the humans and the elves all seemed to have their troubles, our lives went on for generations, pretty much as they always had. We did some farming and gathered honey jum.

Story 2

Well, I don't know who tripped over what this time, but all of a sudden, the Runnyeye goblins decided that they wanted to stomp all over us. And they weren't alone, which wasn't a surprise since they were such idiots they couldn't conquer a sand castle much less Rivervale without help.

They were banded together with orcs now, calling themselves the Horde of Inferno. Many's the lad who called them the Horrid Infernal, let me tell you, sometimes straight to their ugly old faces! But there were hundreds of them. Hundreds. We had no choice.

Halflings don't generally give up on anything. We're tenacious, but we're not idiots. When it was obvious that the Horde wouldn't rest until they'd stepped on every single one of us, we packed our bags and left. We'd headed into Kithicor despite the legends of its curse. It must've been cursed all right, because we hadn't time to do more than catch our breath when the Horde came trotting along behind us, burning up all the trees and killing anything that moved.

Highhold Pass was much closer to us, but a lot of folk decided to head toward the West Commonlands instead. They came hurrying back because no matter which way you looked, if the Horde hadn't got there first, the Rallosian Army was having a cook-out. Things looked real grim.

Fortunately, we're half the size of humans, and we can be really sneaky when we put our minds to it. The displaced halflings of Rivervale thanked good old Bristlebane many a time for that, let me tell you. They kept their wits about them and snuck all the way over to Qeynos.

Story 3

You don't see much writings among the elves and the humans about the halflings arriving just when they needed some help. Well, that's okay. They were in pretty desperate straits then and we don't withhold our help from folks that need us; that's not the halfling way. We dug in beside them, shoulder to? er, hip? and stood our ground to defend their city. If it weren't for us, there's no Green Mist in the world that could've saved Qeynos. Well, okay, maybe the Green Mist helped. Some.

With the Rallosians defeated and the Horde on the run, the Qeynos folk were in a somewhat celebratory mood. It was still pretty grim business, having to bury all the bodies and all. We stuck it out to help them because we don't like leaving things unfinished.

Finally, we started packing up to head back to Rivervale. After all, our city had been overrun by the Horde, too, so we had to go back to rebuild it. That, and we were nearly out of the jumjum we'd managed to bring along.

Unfortunately, someone tripped on something big this time. The whole world shimmied and shook like a honey jum collector with a bixie in his jerkin. And when all the shaking stopped, we couldn't find a way back. Antonica was clean tore apart and the seas were on the boil. Countless ships headed out to see if a way could be found to somewhere, anywhere, and all we ever heard back from them were bits of flotsam on the shore. It takes a lot of gumption nowadays to get a halfling onto a ship.

The folks in Qeynos are nice to us, giving us a tract of land near a little stream so we could make something homey for ourselves. It's not the same, though. Even those of us who never laid our own eyes on Rivervale or the Misty Thicket burn with a longing inside for home.

The History of Humans

Story 1

This is the story of two cities, the cities of men: Qeynos and Freeport. They stand on islands that used to be part of a larger continent of Antonica. One is in the east and the other in the west. They are both different, yet share something in common: they are created by humans.

Humans were found mainly in and around the plains of Karana in the center of Tunaria. To the west, Qeynos was founded by Antonius Bayle the First. It was founded by strong, noble people who believed in the ways of law and order. In the east, the city of Freeport developed into a dangerous port for those venturing into the Ocean of Tears. Its leader, Sir Lucan D'Lere, consolidated his leadership over the city through various strategic alliances.

It is ironic that the studious Erudites, who were descended from humans, began the Age of Turmoil through the uncovering of lost arts. Their battles caused chaos and changed the lands. Change can be frightening, and the reaction of many to fear is heightened violence and suspicion to anything that is different.

Freeport was filled by riots as frightened and greedy citizens struggled for control in North Freeport. This civil unrest occurred near-simultaneously with the arrival of the Dreadnaughts, although this could be pure coincidence.

In Qeynos, violence within the city began in earnest with the War of Plagues. The undead, corrupt citizens and soldiers attacked the city from all sides. Finally, the citizens were able to repel the invaders and cleanse itself of the evil which had crept into it.

Story 2

As a result of the two cities' years of strife, they both seemed to withdraw from the world at large. Battles raged on during the ensuing Age of War, and humans took part, but the focus of the many wars seemed to be the other races of Norrath. The humans of both Qeynos and Freeport knew that whether the other races fell or repelled their attackers, they would soon receive their share of the fighting. It was no surprise when armies of orcs began to assail both Qeynos and Freeport.

The Battle of Defiance raged on both fronts for several days. In the end, both cities survived, but at the cost of many hundreds of lives. The citizens knew as well that they had not entirely defeated their enemies, only driven them away.

The Word of the Tranquil was first heard around this time. While its origin is uncertain, it is undeniable that many mortal beings dreamt of hearing these words: "When the shadows are broken and fire rains from the sky, seek refuge within the cities of men."

At first, the rumblings of the mountains and the changes in the sea were thought to be simple anomalies. As the years passed, it was clear that an Age of Cataclysms had befallen Norrath. The Cataclysms were of all types: earthquakes, flooding, and the inconceivable melting of Velious. The seas became too treacherous to travel and many parts of the world began to collapse into the caverns of Subtunaria during this time of Rending.

Then a small earthquake allowed the turbulent seas to enter a small cavern formed by the collapse of Subtunaria. It was like the ripping of threads and could not be stopped until the churning waters poured through and broke Antonica apart.

Story 3

Through this time, the cities of Qeynos and Freeport managed to survive on their respective chunks of the former Antonica. Qeynos called its new environs "New Antonica" while Freeport declared its new continent would be named "D'Lere."

As though these changes were not enough, Luclin exploded without warning. Some survivors who saw the event with their own eyes were blinded by the white-hot light at the moment Luclin shattered.

This event was known as "The Shattering." Within days of the explosion, Norrath was pummeled by burning chunks of rock. Entire villages that had made it through the Rending were flattened or burned to the ground.

For the next several seasons, the skies continued to cry burning rocks that hissed in the roiling seas or crushed and burned whatever they fell upon. It was a dark and dangerous time. Eventually, the seas and skies calmed. The citizens of Freeport and Qeynos began the task of rebuilding their cities. They were soon joined by other races, as folk whose homes and lands had been destroyed sought refuge.

With the influx of so many new faces, the cities, so long the strongholds of humans, are becoming more diverse. And as always, it is the humans who adapt the quickest to these changes. Who knows what is in the future for Qeynos and Freeport?

The History of Ogres

Story 1

We were created by Rallos Zek. He stood at the edge of the swamp and gathered to himself armfuls of mud to shape us. We are formed of earth and water. Earth and water give us strength. Earth and water can move anything in their way. Of the ancient days we lived in the Feerrott and our mighty fortress of Oggok. In these ancient times we frightened the Rathe, who laid a curse on us. They were afraid.

For many long years, Rallos Zek's chosen lived like children. Our minds were dull but our strength remained. How do you remove the earth? With water. And we are made of both. You are walking across the swamp and step into its thickness. Slowly it draws you down. You grasp the roots. You grasp the grasses. And still you sink slowly, slowly.

The more you fight it, the deeper you sink. So went our minds. They sank deeper into mud. Some of the things we knew before the curse, we forgot. War and battle, we thought. We would find our enemies and break them. But sometimes, the enemy confused us and in our dull time, we could only look and be angry.

Then the curse was gone. Our minds cleared and we growled for vengeance. Rallos Zek sent us his avatar to guide us. We became the Rallosian Army. No more sinking for the ogres! Many things we forgot, yes. But many things new we learned.

They called Oggok a village. We made it great in our empire. All the Feerrott was ours. Cazic-Thule's temple we would leave, but all else was ours. We came to Innothule and the slippery-skinned frogloks fled. We are of earth and water; we could wait.

Story 2

Innothule was ours before and ours again. We looked to the Rathe Mountains. They cursed us before, but lived there no longer. If they had lived, we would crush them. We would put them to the ground and crush them. Slowly, like sinking into mud.

Strength flows in the ogre. We are earth and water! Earth and water bend to us. We saw Lake Rathetear and its waters turned aside for us. The bird and the horse saw us. We crushed them. We crushed them like stones rolling from the mountain. We rolled to the Plains.

Others had used us in our dull time. Now we used them. The orc and the gnoll, they tended us. From all across Norrath, they heard us and obeyed. Earth and water go deep beneath the mountains. We are earth and water.

We stood before them and pounded our chest. We stomped our feet. They feared us. Orc and gnoll, they tended us. We stood before the cities. We smelled their fear. We marched on the cities of men, one in the east and the other, west.

In the Feerrott, we left many ogres. They thirsted for battle. They thirsted for war. Not thinking, they entered the Temple of Cazic-Thule. They forgot our promise. Long ago, ogres promised not to enter the Temple. They entered the Temple and it awoke.

Story 3

In Innothule, we left many ogres. Some followed the slippery-skinned frogloks. They followed them through the swamp. They followed them into Guk. Guk is dark and deep, but we are made of earth and water. We do not fear the dark.

Far away, we stood before the cities of men. We threw bones at them. We lit many fires to show them our might. They looked and saw the Rallosian Army from valley to hill. They saw their own deaths waiting. We smelled their fear. It was a good battle. Many of them died. A good battle means they fought well. It is nothing to kill the unarmed. It is good to crush the armed.

Standing before the cities of men, we did not know that some had entered the Temple of Cazic-Thule. We waited for the next day's battle. In the night, the Green Mist fell from the sky. It choked us. It burned us. In the early light, we lay on the battlefields, dead.

We are earth and water, not wind. The wind is not ours and it pushed the Green Mist over the ogres. It blew the Green Mist across all the battlefields, and over the Rathe Mountains, and across the Feerrott and through Innothule. It did not enter Guk.

Those who were in Guk returned to Oggok. The Green Mist had passed them. They passed the bodies of the Army and returned to Oggok. From Oggok, some went to Freeport. The thought came in a dream, to go to the city of men. Not to rule, but to live.

The History of Teir'Dal

Story 1

Those who are not Teir'Dal cannot understand. They ask, "Why harbor ill-will towards others and not toward the one who tormented your kind into being?" It is easy to judge others, isn't it?

A long time ago, the gods made a pact amongst themselves to divide the world and populate it with their own beings. So came forth the dwarves, and the elves, and the others. No one thought to include Innoruuk. No one invited him.

It is no wonder, then, that he had to create us in secret. Why should we hate him, who gave us life and purpose? We are not his afterthought, but the afterthought of all others who came before. And we will not forget that.

While Innoruuk fashioned us in the dark, the others scampered around without purpose or reason. We are not made that way. Every step we take has meaning, we consider everything in its own measure.

Our ancient home is Neriak, our beautiful, ancient home, lost to us forever. I am not sentimental, yet I remember its beauty. Since we can never return home, we make do with Freeport, city of men.

Story 2

Look at me, my skin is dark and my hair is silver. I walk with the grace of my ancestors, more graceful even than those sniveling high elves. With their noses in the air, they pretend they are the only "true" elves. They lie.

Some Teir'Dal have always had dealings with the humans of Freeport. Some of us would prefer not to associate with them. The reason is simple: we don't trust them. We don't trust anyone. It is safer that way. Even one's own family is not to be trusted. Consider our history. Tales abound of sons being cheated out of their birthright by the children of another. Wives scorned by their husbands need to find their own way, even if that way seems violent.

That is how the Teir'Dal survive - we take our destinies into our own hands. What is not given us, we will endeavor to make our own. In the War of Fay, many seek to cast us as the villains. Remember: we were not invited to the party.

Imagine this: a beautiful maiden lives in a castle of gemstones and all come from far and wide to seek her hand. And you, though your blood is as pure as the others, are not sent word that this maiden is seeking a mate. Would you not seek to show your worth in battle for her hand?

Not that Faydark is any great beauty, so the allegory fails there. But that these lands existed, could have been ours from the beginning and were not, left us no choice. We had to stake claim, for we are not persuaded by the words, "We were here first."

Story 3

Though we battled valiantly, we were hampered by the lesser beings who sought to please us. The failures of the orcs and trolls cost us dearly. In those days, perhaps, we trusted them. We have learned our lesson.

You have heard of death of Naythox Thex. Recall my words that not even one's own family is to be trusted? You would do well to keep that device close to your heart with one hand, while you defend yourself with the other. Not to say that the Emperor was slain by his own family. Who knows how these things happen, except those who are involved? Suffice to say, he died and the Empress took control. It was convenient for her to do so.

It was not long past the War of Fay that the First Gate was destroyed. And so, those of us who had not yet returned home are stranded. Who knows how it goes at home, if it still exists? I am certain that whatever has happened, it has been amusing.

Imagine this: a fledgling falls from its nest. A young boy picks it up and puts it back so that it will not die. The mother bird returns and, sensing something has disturbed her home, pushes the fledgling from the nest to its death. Do I believe we shall ever return to Neriak? No. There is no passage and if I were there, I would slay any who attempted to return at this late day. If it survived the tumult of the lands, Neriak would not welcome home its strays.

So I live now in Freeport, amongst the filth of the humans and the stench of the trolls. I walk unafraid down the dark alleys. They are the ones who move out of my way, for they know the subtle power I possess.

The History of Trolls

Story 1

Trolls first lived in Innothule Swamp where they fished in the murky waters. Trolls were very handsome, with long black hair and long limbs. One day, the goblin king saw the troll princess and kidnapped her. She refused to marry him. He was old and ugly and green. "You must marry me at dawn," said the goblin king. "You are prettier than goblin women!" The troll princess covered her face with her long thin hands and cried.

In the middle of the night, a shadow entered the high tower. The troll princess demanded to know who had entered her room. "It is I, your creator, Cazic-Thule!" said the voice. The princess bowed down to worship him and he said, "If you do not want to marry the goblin, I will stop it." Cazic-Thule told her that when the king came back for her, she must run as fast as she could and jump into the swamp. The princess thought this was a good plan.

The moment the princess' feet touched the soft muck of the swamp, her skin changed from grey to green and her thick hair fell out in clumps. She touched the sides of her head and felt her ears growing larger, with bumps and hair protruding from them. The princess screamed, knowing she had been tricked and she heard Cazic-Thule laughing at her. "I did not say how I would stop the wedding," he said, snapping his fingers. The princess looked around her and saw all the other trolls had also changed.

That is how the trolls turned from grey to green and their hair fell out. The princess was so angry that she cursed the name of Cazic-Thule, saying he had tricked her. Cursing the gods is not good. Cazic-Thule roared at the trolls, filling their ears with such noise that they to this day hear it.

When the goblin king caught up to the troll princess and saw how ugly she had become he turned to run, but then she reached out her long green hands and grabbed him. The trolls, not the goblins, had a merry feast that night.

Story 2

This is a story we tell of how the frogloks came to be. Once there was a large bridge of earth and under the bridge lived the trolls. Whenever someone came to cross the bridge, a troll would grab its foot and another would knock it down and then they'd eat it. After many years of this, folks stopped using the bridge. They found other ways around and the trolls grew hungry.

The only things that crossed the bridge were frogs which the trolls considered too small to bother with. While the trolls lay beneath the bridge, holding their tummies and gnashing their teeth, a frog hopped onto the bridge and the first troll said, "We are so hungry we will die!" The second troll said, "Then let's eat this frog." And the third troll agreed.

So the first troll grabbed its foot but it was slippery and hard to handle. The second troll grabbed another foot and then the third troll grabbed another of the frog's feet. Each troll tugged and tugged, trying to keep hold of the slimy frog. It tried to pull itself away, but trolls are strong.

In fact, the trolls were so strong, they stretched the frog this way and that, until it became very big for a frog. When they ate it, the trolls realized they had made a tiny frog into something big enough to be tasty.

From that day on, the trolls grabbed the frogs that crossed the bridge. The frogs were too stupid to find another way across. Once or twice a frog would escape after the trolls had stretched it and those turned into frogloks. Very tasty.

Story 3

Last, this is the story of the troll that went to Freeport. When the ogre armies had passed through Innothule, some of the trolls joined up and went with them. One of the trolls was General Kangar, a famous troll leader even though he was very old.

General Kangar went with the ogre army to march through the Commonlands carrying the mighty stick that marked him as a leader. In the fighting, a filthy human saw the mighty stick and bashed General Kangar on the head to kill him. But trolls have very hard heads.

The human ran into the city and General Kangar followed. The war ended and the ogres were gone, but still General Kangar chased the human. For many years they ran. Then the human ran to use the magic ship into the magical guild hall.

"Do not touch me," said the human. "Or what?" laughed the General, "You will hurt me? I chased you for a long time and I will gobble you up!" "You will be sorry," said the human. "That is as likely as the moon exploding," said General Kangar.

With a roar, General Kangar leaped at the human. He struck it and cracked the human's skull with the mighty stick. At that very instant, high in the sky, Luclin exploded and that is how General Kangar of the trolls broke apart the moon.


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