There was a time when many refused to serve the great god Viv. It was a time of war and chaos, blood and mourning. To save the races from extinction, Viv exiled those who rejected him, preserving those who worshiped him on Treya. We humans are among the blessed and have escaped the death and destruction raging on the rest of Tirien. Our one thorn in the side to peace is the sorceress Ravenna, who serves Nyx, Goddess of Night, Viv's enemy.
There are a number of races living on Treya, each blessed with a gift from the gods.
The Blessed Races
- Elves - Enéra blessed elves with spiritual detection. Elves rule the seven forests on Treya, each comprising one of their provinces. The Royal - the equivalent of their king - lives in the central forest named Enerwood, which nearly splits the continent. Elves value all forms of life very highly.
- Dwarves - Impérion blessed dwarves with the ability to form earth. They live primarily in the northern mountains in various mines, thought to be connected in one continuous kingdom. They are masterful engineers and artisans.
- Humans - Illusia blessed humans with the ability to bend light. Humans generally live on hills and plains surrounding elven provinces. They are clever schemers, skilled at adapting.
You can find out more about the blessed races' gifts at the Temple.
Nymphs are comprised of three subraces:
- Naiads - able to commune with water, naiads live in oceans and rivers.
- Dryads - able to commune with trees, dryads inhabit forests.
- Oreads - able to commune with rock, oreads dwell in mountains.
According to old reports, the nymphs used to be a single race, not split into three subspecies. These nymphs were able to commune with water, trees, and rock, and have come to be called trinal nymphs. Based on certain observations, it is suspected that Ravenna may be one such, though it would indicate a serious break between her and her people, as nymphs would never serve Nyx. These same old reports imply that trinal nymphs who chose to serve Ravenna took the name "fae."
Nymphs claim to serve a god named Lux, and thus, oppose Ravenna and the blessed races. Viv and the blessed races killed Lux centuries ago, driving the nymphs to shelter in their last city, Lumeria. They still refuse to serve Viv, claiming to serve this dead god. Lumeria resides within Elashara, the eastern-most elven province. Royalty within the blessed races often take a nymph slave whose subspecies is easy for their race to deal with. These slaves tend to various court duties. Dwarves take oreads as messengers with other servant duties; elves take naiads to tend to their elaborate gardens and duties; and humans take naiads to tend their water supply and deliver messages.
The Hidden Races
Rarely seen, or even thought of, are the hidden races - those who neared the brink of extinction before bargaining with one of the blessed races for safe haven.
- Centaurs - hidden among the human colonies in the Hadrian Mountains in the east, centaurs are half-human and half-horse. They lend their strength in return for protection against those who would enslave them. Their racial gift might be their keen eyesight or great strength. How long they live is unknown.
- Fairies - it is uncertain if fairies still live, but if they do, they are hidden with the nymphs in Lumeria. Resembling tiny people, fairies were given the gift of flight. Their wings resemble those of dragonflies, and - like dragonflies - they are highly adept at maneuvering.
- Unicorns - hidden within Mystére, the northwestern elven province, unicorns are horses with a magical horn. This horn houses their racial gift, and grants them telepathic and telekinetic abilities. Many seek these horns as its holder is granted a small measure of these abilities even after the unicorn has passed. It is rumored that unicorns live many centuries and the elves protect them in return for wisdom and counsel.
Rarely seen by any but dwarves, goblins live in the Goblin Warrens on the outskirts of the Shadow Lands. Little is known about them, as they require a gas (possibly known as noxion) to breathe. Their warrens are filled with it, making them virtually uninhabitable by any other race. It is thought their racial ability lets them see better in the dark. This race worships Nyx and serves Ravenna.
Those serving the Raven Empire, Ravenna's kingdom, call themselves Renn. While Renn are not technically a race, they are often referred to as such. In fact, they are comprised of many races:
- Sprites (nymphs who no longer serve Lux)
- Fae (thought to be the original sprite ancestors - possibly extinct)
Dragons have long been extinct, thought by most to be myth. However, the skeleton discovered and displayed in Drakmar proves they did live at some point. We are creating a replica of the skeleton for display in our Dragon Vault (a room attached to Aurora Library). Dragonlore happens to be one of Queen Sarsetta's favorite pastimes; her parents were highly interested in the topic, and helped establish Drakmar as a kingdom.
Drakma - the name given to the discovered dragon - stretches 15 [feet] from nose to tail, its tail half the length of its body, resembling a snake-like lizard. Two twisted horns protrude behind the ear openings, and bone ridges line the center of its serpentine back. Two wings - similar to a bat's structure - give the beast flight. Fangs and claws paired with its size and flight made dragons a formidable foe. Until we finish the Dragon Vault, you can glean more information from the dragon scholars of Drakmar.
A Brief History of Treya
Viv banished all other gods except his three most faithful (Illusia, Enéra, and Imperion) and his rival, Nyx - an event known as the Exile. Since most information from before the Exile was lost, our tale begins soon after. Our patron gods granted magic to the blessed races, causing us to flourish beyond others. Viv beat the self-righteous nymphs back into their capital in Lumeria, where they've been kept ever since. The blessed races haven't been without their differences, but our greatest enemy has always been Ravenna and her people, the Renn. They are malevolent workers of torture, dark magic, and flagrant disregard for life.
Ravenna's origins hail from before the Exile; Nyx granted her two gifts: immortality, and thought magic. Viv and our patron gods have repelled Ravenna every time she has stirred, but she continues to return. We await the day the Seer Adept is able to head an assault to defeat not only Ravenna, but Nyx as well.
At one point, Ravenna's dark magic enabled her to conquer all territory between the Hadrian Mountains and the Enerwood. The blessed races pooled together their own magical resources and formed the atarans, a society of spellcasters designated to train new spellcasters to keep Ravenna at bay. They were able to prevent her from pushing further into Treya, but she retained the lands she'd stolen for twenty years before the blessed races managed a concerted flurry of sabotages, finally initiating her retreat.
After this, peace reigned long enough to breed prosperity and research. This facilitated humans/ discovery of lenses, which we use so widely today for our lighting, cooking, and waste removal. When we discovered how to use lenses to cleanse saltwater, we began venturing further into the Delmyr Ocean, and discovered the Archipelago, where the merpeople rule. Trade with them has been beneficial, providing new resources for healing, food, and even technology. Their hololamps with phosphorescent bacteria are mostly novel, but can be quite helpful for certain situations. Unfortunately, the merpeople share the nymphs' aversion for magic, but, so long as the blessed races don't use magic in the Archipelago, our relations have been amicable.
Beyond the Archipelago lies a continent called Tyrga, housing the exiled races. They have intertwined so much, there are no longer separate elf, dwarf, and human races, but five different subraces blending all three races, with varying colors of features. Some of the Tsa'bei (a tanned subrace who specializes in seafaring) live on the Archipelago islands, and interested the elves in their martial fighting style. Their style is called "Da'hri" and is built into their culture with many rules around it. We discovered the Exiled live in such chaos, that, were it not for establishing the Da'hri, they would have fought themselves to extinction long ago. Instead, Da'hri enables them to beat an opponent without killing. When beaten, the one defeated becomes the victor's slave for three years.
We visited Tyrga, seeking to know more about the exiled, yet not only was their technology primitive, but when they discovered we could use magic, our brief presence created a wave of chaos that nearly obliterated their society as a whole. We determined their resources and technology were not worth the effort it would take to launch a mass offensive across the Delmyr (assuming the merpeople would let us). Viv was right to exile them.
Shortly after this, we humans discovered how to create skill gems. Such gems are infused with a particular magical skill. Their creation nearly caused a war between humans and elves, since the elves thought it was dark magic. Considering the fact that the one who infuses the gem literally loses their ability to perform the spell they infused into the gem, it's understandable, if lamentable. Those who performed this service were paid handsomely, and this opened a new world to those who couldn't use magic. Simple spells - such as creating a spark to light a fire - were easy to procure from individuals with little magical talent, eager to make some money. In fact, once we were able to procure a skill gem imbued with the ability to teleport its holder from one designated city to another (and the same or another holder back again), demand for skill gems skyrocketed. They are now a way of life.
We humans became more powerful with our new technologies, and our influence grew even over the elves and dwarves. Yet, Ravenna woke during this time, stirring up strife and resentment under our rule. She fanned this unrest into civil war, waited until it took a toll, then ordered the Renn to attack. The blessed races, strained to their limits, formed the Ataran Council to battle Ravenna. We humans created very special skill gems called seer gems, which enhanced the use of thought magic. The secret of their creation has since been lost. We fashioned one for each element, granting the seer gems each to a member of the Ataran Council.
By this time, the strain on the human government forced us to pull back our influence. Eventually, the Ataran Council led us to victory against Ravenna, even banishing her from our realm - a feat never before accomplished. However, the dwarves and elves simultaneously threw off any human influence, creating a backlash that nearly destroyed our race. This is what we humans call The Fracture. If not for the atarans' intervention, humans would either be slaves or annihilated for our contributions.
This spawned a time of chaos for the humans, anarchy and little kingdoms rising everywhere. Bids for power and land caused the loss of much knowledge and life. Some small human kingdoms managed a measure of stability, but war was constant, with new kingdoms rising and falling on a regular basis. Humans were cast off from the affairs of elves and dwarves, trade becoming difficult in such an unstable economy.
When Queen Sarsetta discovered the knowledge kept on Illusia's Isle, she made use of its technology and wisdom and set out on a campaign to reunite the entire human race under one kingdom. She became known as the Mercenary Queen, as she'd had experience as a mercenary in the past, and did well in managing the campaign. After only six years, she reunited the entire human race under one new nation, which she named Prismeria. She made Illusia's Isle and its fortifications her capital, retiling it Prismere Isle. Humankind has once again taken the stage among the blessed races, with booming trade and technology.