Timeline: 400 AF to 499 AF
The leader of the Ivory Mark, Makarta, called out to all telling of the betrayal of his protege, Derillin. In trying to take his master's life, Derillin had stolen a powerful blade given to Makarta by his deceased master, who happened to be Derillin's father and the former leader of the Quisalis Mark. Makarta, too weak from the poison in the attack, activated an enchantment on the blade Derillin didn't know about, revealing the young assassin's position to all, and calling for any of his allies to bring the blade back. Aztecia found him, and killed Derillin, but the young assassin cursed the blade with his last breath, and vanished. The curse rendered the weapon ineffectual for normal use, but rather than keep it, Makarta donated the blade to the Matsuhama Arena for a new game called Champions vs. Assassins, played with that very sword. Meanwhile, Derillin recovered, and opened up shop in New Thera where his father once practiced, admitting new members into the Quisalis Mark, should they be able to find him.
The year began with such strange occurrences. Once more, objects came to life around Sapience, but this time Chaos was not particularly the reason. Instead, a small sprite had escaped from a Queen no one had ever heard of, with a full compliment of powerful fairy dust. Wishing himself somewhere more fun, he wound up in the skies over Sapience, and hence did the dust fall over the cities, producing the odd effects of living inanimate objects once more. Fyglia, the spirte, eventually revealed that his friend the Queen of the Dryads would know how to return things back to normal, and after a trip to the fairy circle in Azdun, Delphinus solved the puzzle of how to travel to Fyglia's home of Annwyn, and with heavy heart, returned the little sprite to the Queen Rhyannon there. The knowledge of the path to Annwyn, however, remained with the adventurers of Sapience, a new realm to explore!
Sea Lion Cove is discovered as a group of adventurers attempt to help Constantine the jeweler of Tasur'ke visit an old friend named Simmons who lives in the lighthouse there.
Ominous smoke greeted adventurers, rising from the Aalen Forest to the cries and screams of the Tsol'aa. What adventurer's found was the beleaguered Tyrandiel among the corpses of many, many of her kin. She told her story to those that had gathered, explaining that she was a scholar, and spent many a day speaking with Candlemas the Lorewarden in Azdun. Eventually, she learned of a staff which held the key to the knowledge of the Lorewardens, and coveting this, she stole it only to have a dreadful curse placed upon her. When she returned to the Aalen, a murderous rage overtook her, and the destruction surrounding her, was all but her doing. She pleaded with those present to help her set things right, and after lifting the curse she returned the staff, pleading with Candlemas for his forgiveness. When this was finished, she requested someplace quiet for her to stay, to continue her studies and teach others in hopes of repaying the debt she felt she owed Sapience. Dephinus suggested the Lucretian Athenaeum in New Thera, and thus did we have Tyrandiel the wise make herself available to us.
A large quicksand pit forms in El'Jazira, swallowing the Shiek's son, prompting the distraught father to cry out to all of Sapience for help. Those that came proved unable to avoid the quickly shifting sands, soon falling prey to them as well, though they discovered a cavern underneath thankfully, saving themselves though presented with a new issue. A nexus of volcanic tubes leaking high pressure water that streamed out to the surface was the cause of the quicksand, and the Shiek's son insisted they solve this issue before simply returning. Imyrr thought once more of the Mhun, purchasing a mixture from them. Utilizing this, he sealed the tube, and was handsomely rewarded.
A new gambling parlor in New Thera drew not only adventurers from across Sapience, but the Divine themselves to join in the merriment. Fortunes won and lost at those tables, enough gold passed hands that day to make even the richest Achaean stammer in surprise. As the Divine grew weary of the games presented, an adventurer by the name of Kalek offered a new game to the Divine to be played with dice. After winning not once, but twice in a row, the Divine grew restless, demanding to inspect Kalek's dice for foul play. Even Maya herself said there was nothing wrong with the dice, and play resumed again for even larger stakes. Once more, Kalek won, and the Divine were outraged...but as Maya revealed that it was not the dice that were the source of the trickery, Kalek threw back his hood and revealed himself to be none other than Hermes, the Lord of Luck, returned to the realms from travels beyond.
Calling upon the aid of Mhaldor, and offering the Idol of Corruption in exchange, a powerful demi-lich leads plans to raid Shallam. Their goal? The crystal decanter in Shallam which held the essence of the Shallamese patrons of present and past. Attacking the city with hordes of undead and Mhaldorians, the demi-lich army penetrated the deepest sanctum of Shallam, and stole the decanter amidst the fierce battle, much to the dismay of the Shallamese.
With the decanter missing, Miramar's power began to fade. About this time, a priest shouted for help in Azdun, sealed in a strange laboratory in chains. While the Shallamese attempted to help the priest, the Mhaldorians that arrived proved too much to bear, killing the priest before he could be freed of his chains. Praying for salvation, the brown robed priest went to Shallam to offer his assistance. Miramar's order had been plagued by visions since before the decanter had been stolen, one foretelling of a brown robed priest who would help their beleaguered Goddess. After asking much of the Shallamese, he eventually concocted a potion using a vial of blood marked with Miramar's symbol found in the same laboratory he had been, and told her Order to offer it on the altar of her temple to their Goddess to save her. As they did so, the altar quickly became corrupted, and learning the priest had been betraying them all along, they quickly slew the man, who rose as a lich and escaped through a portal to Mhaldor. But the damage had already been done amidst Miramar's shouts of his betrayal, and the Temple of Justice exploded from the corruption, killing all of those within.
The destruction of the temple would not be the end, however. Awakening from the coma the explosion had put her in, the now blind Calanthia led those of Miramar's Order to the site of the Master Shrine of Miramar, and excavation began immediately to clear it out and sanctify the temple. As they did so, the demi-lich, along with Slith, began to stalk the temple, seeking out Miramar and knowing her to be nearby. The forces of Good descended upon them when they saw, and through a fierce battle, sent the undead running and recovered the decanter. Knowing what they must do, her order set to work on a ritual to help their goddess. This ritual was interrupted by a Mhaldorian raid, and though many lives were lost on both sides, the attack was repelled and the decanter remained in Good's control. Finishing their ritual wearily, the assembled passed through the portal it created to a plane called Miranus, and finding their sleeping goddess there, returned the decanter to her very being. The combined essence of the Divine of Good helping to heal the sickness that had befallen her. The Goddess of Justice returned to the land, she informed Mhaldor, and Slith, of her intent to make them suffer for their wrongdoings.
Bringing a longstanding plan to fruition, the Wyrm of Worlds takes over the body of Demeter, casting her into a netherworld, and beginning subtly waging war on her dominion. Realizing something was wrong, her followers band together to bring Demeter back, and in turn summon the Goddess in a new form to wage war with her old corrupt one. The Wyrm, being an ancient demon who had done battle with Gaia before Demeter, was prepared, but the experiences he had put the Goddess through tempered her power, and in the end, she triumphed. Now reborn anew, Demeter was no more. Instead she is reborn as Melantha, Goddess of Seasons, and joins the Garden of the Gods once more.
An avalanche off of the Great Southern Road reveals Quartz Peak, and it's feuding Ursu and Taryen. Zenui becomes the first adventurer to set foot in this new locale.
The dwarf Elawhe Greyfounder reveals to a group of adventurers the location of the Ruins of Morindar, begging them to help her beloved still trapped within. Without wasting a breath, a search party was formed, and through the cunning and strength of those assembled, they battled through hordes of half-dead monstrosities and puzzled ancient ruin, finding Torgath and reuniting the couple, which they then helped out of the ruins and back to Ibhir Ness, their home. The secrets these ruins hold are now open to Sapience to explore, however, at their own risk.
A longstanding staple of adventurer's learning, Myrrh's effects of increasing the worth of lessons have been rendered obsolete by the Divine granting this benefit to all, naturally. Not allowing such a potent and important herb to go without purpose, Kastalia and Melantha call together the forestals for a powerful ritual, granting Myrrh the purpose it now holds today.
A cyclone from the southern sea lifts the Leviathan from it's home within Mhaldor, and tosses it out into the western sea. Seeing the damage it's been doing to the western shore, Sefyr, Guardian of the Western Seas, begins to do battle with it, knocking it against the cliffs along the shore. The battle is interrupted by a theft among Sefyr's hippocampus herds, and realizing the Leviathan was only a distraction, Sefyr rushes off, leaving the battle unfinished. Though brave enough to take to the cliffs found a new path open, and past the raging Leviathan stood Harae Isle for exploration.
The cracking of the northern ice-shelf was the precursor for a group of intrepid explorers to find Herik, a hunter from a city that the shifting ice had now closed him off from. Gathering the ingredients necessary to melt a hole in the shelf and help him home, the assembled adventurers were the first of their kind to walk among the city of Isaia in the northern reaches.
Cypra Lichlord was the first to come across a strange creature somewhere between a warthog and a spider. After gathering a group to figure where such a beast had come from, the assembled were eventually drawn to Haag, who slyly mentioned a sister of hers hidden in the swamps of Dun Valley. Finding their way amongst the vines and reeds, the party discovered many, many more of the strange creatures, and the powerful Kloreme, Witch of the Southern Swamps.
A ghost wandering the Black Forest leads adventurers to discovering what had been previously unknown areas of the wood. The assembled succeeded in bringing some manner of rest to the ghost, and the long forgotten areas of the woods are now free to explore.
Garian, a hunter, crawls his way into North of New Thera telling tales of strange and dangerous foxes and bears that injured him so. Gathering a group of adventurers, and enlisting the help of Efrin the woodcutter, the party finds old paths around the foul-smelling Green Lake, in search of the mutated beasts.
Mhaldor kidnaps a tavern girl, Irilan, at the behest of Jerkin as he could no longer be appeased by the women in the brothel. Shallam, noticing the missing woman, storms the City of Evil to get her back, and after open conflict and bloodshed on both sides, eventually succeeds after more subtle attempts were made during negotiations, unbeknownst to the negotiator, who was then slain on the spot.
Lorielan cleanses the taint left within her from Slith's former rituals, and aids Tarah in attempting to do the same. However, the ritual goes horribly wrong when a Blackrock dwarf guided by 'visions' does what she claims to be the Lords work, and sets off explosives deep underground Tarah's grove. The resulting backlash caused her to break the vial of tainted blood Slith had made, and the taint overpowered her through using the nearby shrine. The resulting explosion left little to anchor Tarah to the mortal realm until Lorielan's quick thinking bound the Goddess to the Holy Codex while she recovered. Shortly after, the pages began to fade from that same codex...
Cryptic messages within the codex left by Tarah led her order and others to find Nimbus, the firewolf she had been gifted from Mithraea all those years ago, and that his position as a guardian of her temple would allow him to help fix this situation. Finding the pup with a trainer in the Dardanic Grasslands, they brought him back to the location of the failed ritual in Tarah's temple, and Nimbus cleared the room of it's taint, settling down next to Tarah as his aura of flame flickered over her body, keeping the taint at bay. Things were secured, but there was no progress to fix them, just yet...and time seemed to be running short as Tarah's essence in the codex seemed to be weakening...
Met with another cryptic message, the faithful of Tarah are sent searching desperately across Sapience for a way to save their weakening Goddess. Eventually, they are drawn to Pentharian's temple, and leading Lorielan there as well, merge the codex with the altar there, releasing a burst of light that shoots into the sky, as scores of Platinum Dragons rise up to meet it. A portal forms, and Atanamir bursts into the darker world, and moments later, Pentharian emerges, only to find Slith emerging after him. Atanamir follows Slith back out, attempting to take the Prince by surprise, but that isn't the case as he is nearly cleaved in two, falling away to the ground as Slith sets his sights on Pentharian.
Aegis intervenes, with a cryptic warning about how he knew his plan would draw Slith out into the open, and aids Pentharian by lending him his sword, the Warp Witch. Pentharian slays Slith, and the blood of the undead prince still on the blade, Aegis reclaims it and leaves. Pentharian returns to meet the faithful, but thoughts of Tarah still weigh on all of their minds. Rushing to her temple, it is revealed that Pentharian can touch Tarah without the taint overcoming him, still being tainted himself from the time in Slith's domain. The divine fire of Nimbus doesn't burn him either, and they immediately ponder the messages Tarah left for them, before heading to Lake Vundamere, to submerge Tarah's body in the lake that was her domain.
As Pentharian carried her in, they thankfully witnessed Tarah's essence revive, and return to her body from where it had temporarily merged with Pentharian's, having allowed him to break free of Slith's control. It cleansed the taint of the weary goddess, and the taint from her brother as well, the two of them returning to the surface to embrace, and discuss what had happened. Pentharian has thus returned to the realms, though it is agreed, this could not be the last any of them had seen of Slith...and Mithraea was still held captive.
Meanwhile, Barak, the leader of the Blackrock issues a proclamation that all trade with the outside world was to cease, and all mining operations as well, to focus their intent elsewhere. It is revealed that the Blackrock had recently uncovered the laid of a Dyissan Queen, who bargaining with the former leader of the Blackrock, laid a plot that gave an enchanted amulet to Barak that allowed her control over him. He was freed from this control by the gathered adventurers led by Iocun, and subsequently called for the Queen's death, reversing his former proclamations.
The Wander Inn opens in New Thera, boasting a place for those wearied explorers of Sapience to sit back and take a load off. Simply mind the special rules of delights available only to the most prolific of Achaean explorers.
The young boys of Tasur'ke go missing, and a party rallies only to discover them on the other side of a large gate for the mansion north of town. After the valet opens the gates, they exchange words, and convince the boys to go home to their mothers, after having stayed for a night of hospitality after jumping the fence to retrieve a ball they had lost. Aurick Manor leaves it's gates open, however, now open to the public, in a manner of speaking.
Nogak, a rebel of the village of Nimick, crafts a public news post to inform all the world of it's existence. A mining town that had long been hidden away, was a refuge for those hiding from the constant Ashtan-Shallam wars of the past.
Shallam receives the Codex of Light by the power of Tarah, Lorielan, and Pentharian. Tarah overcomes her fears of all that had occurred in the Apse during the ordeal with the taint, by the love of Pentharian openly being admitted for her, and the two proceed to join the third Divine to carry out the ritual that would bestow the codex.
A Jaru fisherman beseeches Shallam to help him find an island off the coast with a monastery, that his daughter was to attend for tradition of their family. But it had been so long since he had made the journey, he had forgotten the way. With luck and a large search party, the Isle of New Hope was soon discovered through shark infested waters, and the daughter safely delivered.
The tritons begin to leave en masse days before a party is held in Hashan, opening a new planetarium. A demonstration is given in the middle of the party by Tavarius, who had donated it all. Denizens and Adventurers the world over were in attendance as the device showed a place in the Southern Vashnars, and the 'host' promptly vanished, only to be found later there. It started with an eclipse. The three stars Hashan favoured began to blot out the sun, and neither the moon, or Ourania had been spotted since. The nychtaur begins prowling the streets of cities at night, slaying citizens, while in Ashtan, Chaotic vortexes begin slinging people all over Sapience. The forest spirits begin to disappear as well, and Tavarius's location in the Southern Vashnars is protected by a nigh impenetrable shield, no one able to question the man about these events. More on this can be found at Eternal Night.
Titania, Propasia, and even Caladriendra begin to speak of prophecy, leading adventurers to speak Propasia's words in front of the sacred elder trees, destroying them but freeing the forest spirits that had still been within since the events of Eternal Night. Lastly, they gathered around the yew-seed given to the forestals by Makali after her birth, as her birth had destroyed the Great Oak which once stood over all. The gathered began to chant, and the tree, began to grow. Propasia entered into it, and the tree was destroyed like the others. But Propasia was not the one who emerged from it. Instead, Artemis, Warrior of Nature, was born.
A new route is found by Adryn Keep down through the sea, allowing a new path to Shallam, and Riparium. As well, a secluded beach was found with an old man well versed in the knowledge of sailing, but unable to instruct others at the time.
A mage Gaderian loses his staff in a ritual, prompting a search for it. When discovered, he thanks those involved, and returns to his home by Lake Narcisse, now open to all to explore.
The Vertani of Tir Murann offer apology to New Thera for the Vertani's role in what had happened to their city. Reluctantly, under the counsel of adventurers, Angela, the mayor of New Thera, accepts and the Vertani commission a book of all knowledge of their race for New Thera's library. The book is delivered, and discovered to have nothing no one already knew, leaving the situation ambiguous. Further talks were held in Ashtan between Daqsool and Angela, the leaders of their respective peoples, however the talks turned heated as they both clamored for the head of the other, making that offer to the whole of Sapience. Tir Murann and New Thera are at war.
A firefly breaks loose of Arinas's care, setting fires in the forests of Sapience much to the dismay of the forestals. Arinas explains the jar holding it had accidentally broke, and the adventurers set out to Holly of New Thera to craft a new jar, eventually catching the firefly, and ending the rampant fires.
A crack in the Crystalline Circle's master crystal grows worse, the elemental minions which once protected it having left during Artemis' birth. The Magi House of Shallam grew more worried, while their tutor, Ariela went out into the realms in search of the minions. She was slain by a member of the Blood Congregation, who stole the Star Crystal she had been holding onto, unhallowing it for use in growing into a Master Crystal of their own. Ariela still wandered, and eventually fell sick in a coma, taken by the Circle back to Shallam to rest. Out of options, the members of the house began to have visions, which led them to Erinyes who began a ritual to pull their beleaguered tutor from her entrapment in the dreamrealm, chasing what was thought to be an impossible dream. Eventually, they succeeded, and as Ariela returned to the waking world, she clutched a Star Crystal in her hands, which was fed into the Master Crystal, restoring it to it's former state.
A traveling merchant selling false wares visits multiple locations around Sapience, while a band of disheveled nobles begins to hunt him down, asking about the phony wares much in time with merchants who'd been swindled complaining about the things they'd bought. Before he could be caught, he vanished again into the unknown.
A peddler was found slain outside of Caer Witrin. Though none knew his name, they offered him a funeral service all the same in his honour, and buried him within the cemetery there. His splintered wagon still stands in front of the village, and without his wares, Frida and Anais were unable to accept commissions any longer.
The miscreant merchant reappears outside of Shallam, and while those present call for him to reform his errant ways, those within the city find the same bedraggled nobles that had been chasing him before, though seemingly not caring of his presence this time. While they drew crowds and delighted in speaking to them, a heist was taking place within the city, liberating the poor jeweler of much of his wares. By the time the citizens realized what was happening, the nobles and merchant took their leave of the city, having been a distraction.
A wedding was interrupted by knocking at the Basilica door in Shallam, where a wounded wanderer was found, a former associate of the bandits who had made off with Shallam's jewels. He had formerly betrayed his band of thieves, and helped with the heist in Shallam as a means to make up for that act. When the heist was finished, they cast him aside with scorn. The people of Shallam sought forgiveness, and while they did not entirely trust him, he was the only lead they had to finding the jewels. Leading them to the hideout, the Shallamites began quarreling with one another outside on which way to proceed while another group with their own motives snuck into the hideout, and began to lift the jewels from the bandits. They were discovered, but unfortunately for the bandits, just as Shallam came in to attack. In the fray, the new thieves made off with the jewels, leaving Shallam empty handed once more.
The Buckawns of Forest Watch recover a seed that their witchdoctor makes into a rattle made of Dryad skin after an empowering ritual. All over Sapience, forests began to come under attack by red striped beetles, heeding the witchdoctor's call and the forestals responded in force. Unfortunately, the tide of beetles seemed neverending, and they were slowly driven back as forests were destroyed wholesale. A nevaharr, half-man half-lion, joined the adventurers when they finally cornered the witchdoctor, beheading him as Artemis was called to handle the rattle, believing it's seed to belong to Propasia. It did, in fact, as it was the single seed that contained the power of the forest that had long since been cut down to build Cyrene. Using it's power, they restored life to all the forests that had been damaged, and Artemis sealed the witchdoctor's soul off in Anachai for eternity as punishment for his greed.
Lord Jakarta of the Ivory Mark was slain at a wedding in Delos by a member of the Quisalis Mark, prompting a search for the one responsible. Eventually, the Quisalis adventurers helped open a pathway under Derillin's lair that led to a nerwork of caves with hard work of dwarves and elementals being overseen by Dakrol, the Swiftblade, Nevon Talkar, and Isiva, the Blood Maiden, who proudly claimed responsibility for Makarta's brutal murder. The moment of exploration couldn't last, as the Ivory Mark stormed the cave and the fighting between the two rekindled anew.
Both Agatheis and Mithraea return to the realms, though it's unclear how Lady Sol was freed of Slith's dominion precisely, there is no doubt that the Elemental Lord had a hand in it.