This is the first in a series of posts detailing the worlds of Azuria and Eldura (where our adventures take place)! So if you’re looking to deepen the immersion of your adventures or looking for a few lore tidbits, look no further!
In this post, you’ll find the history of the two iterations of the prime plane: Azuria and its predecessor world, Eldura.
The constant across the stories of Eldura and Azuria is the tension between unity and division.
The worlds began as one and have grown more distant ever since as the planes have drifted further apart, much like the peoples who inhabit them. What is writ large between the gods finds its reflection in mortal hearts, causing divisions between kingdoms, families, and even the self.
Below, you’ll find a brief overview of the history of Eldura and Azuria with the option to download the image as a PDF. The more detailed history continues after the file.
Creation of Azuria
There were originally eight planes of energy: Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Nature, Space, Light, and Darkness. The Plane of Nature drew to the center of these and became the three Planes of Life: the prime plane and its two reflections, the Fae Brightlands and the Realm of Shadow or Shadowlands. (See Story Magic, “The Sacrifice of Verdigris” for the full story) The plane of Space helped the plane of Nature to divide herself into three and filled in the new gaps between the realms. The plane of Space also makes up the Star Plane, where mortal souls go after death.
The remaining six planes make up the Elemental Planes: Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Light, and Darkness.
In addition to these are the Immortal Planes, divided by Negative and Positive energies and orientations and ruled by the prime goddesses, Pandora and Llewellyn.
The Fall of the First Age – 8,000 years ago
Alessandra, the first champion of the Titan of Light, Ilona, the leader of the Titans, betrayed the Titans and the other five champions. She called upon the winged agents of the Negative Planes to aid her and stepped into the void Pandora had left behind.
The war waged for one thousand years. At its end, the Negative and Positive Planes separated themselves from the Planes of Life and the Elemental Planes.
The Champion of Light, Alessandra, turned against the other champions she had fought alongside for the past age and destroyed the five of them on the battlefield in one fell swoop. She used their energy to arise to a position of godhood.
The Fall of Orison – 100 Years Later
The massacre of an entire city, set in motion by Ruka (the champion of water and protector of Orison), signaled an end to the First Age.
Ruka sacrificed the souls of the city of Orison in a foul rite to Alessandra and rose to godhood himself. [The Champion of Water rose to a position of power on his island home, Orison, by helping to manage wars and campaigns. But his loyalty shifted as he encountered the dark goddess Alessandra and her allies: Braemorn, god of murder and Xarmev, god of undeath and the grave. Some scholars believe that in a dark ritual, written in the blood of innocents in a cursed book, Ruka traded the souls of the City of Orison to Alessandra to ascend as a deity himself.]
Out of this tragedy, the saudad’s special relationship with Cassandra arose. She adopted the scattered travelers as her own and made their home the stories along the threads of fate. (See Story Magic and The Tree of Silver for more of the saudad’s stories about the fall of their home)
To put a stop to Ruka and Alessandra, the elder gods increased the distances between the Planes of Life, and most of the original peoples returned to their native planes. From then on, humans, then called the Lycan, would make up the majority of the peoples of the Material Plane.
As Alessandra’s power grew, so did the threat to the peoples across the Planes of Life. Her aggressions forced the Enid to return to the Brightlands. The daimon, too, retreated. (See “The Ballad of Hugh and Lilia in Song of Parting) Fenrir’s first people, the Lycan, spread across the prime plane.
The Disappearance of Steymhorod – 1050 Years Later
Life continued across the planes in spite of the darkness that spread from corner to corner of the worlds. An ambitious young lord, Xander Rasvan Draego, met and married a young noblewoman, Elena, and brought her into the idyllic kingdom of Steymhorod.
The couple’s happiness was short-lived, however, as Elena contracted a blood-sickness shortly after conceiving their first son, Cadogan. In his desperation to save his wife, Draego waged a war in search of a cure for the blood-sickness, but to no avail. Elena’s spirit left her body on the eve of the day she was to give birth, the day Draego captured the traitorous Fae Sisters and rent them from their sacred homes across his domain. Steymhorod fell into the Shadowlands, where it has remained, locked away, ever since. (See “Legend of the Black Oak Forest” in Story Magic for the saudad legend of this story. You’ll also find more of the history of Steymhorod across this site and in the Land of Vampires campaign)
The Fall of Eldura (5000 Years Ago)
Wars continued across the lands of Eldura. Many centuries saw peace. Many more saw war. The final age of Eldura, in the second war of a thousand years, called the War of the Champions, the Titans put up a final fight against Alessandra and her allies. Three Titans, Thalyssa, Gaia, and Nyx, withdrew their planes from connection with the Planes of Life so as to protect their home spheres and those who lived there. Atamos, Ignis, and Ilona continued to fight.
The Champions of Earth, Darkness, and Water, whose Titans had left, saw a great decrease in their own power, and they were little match for the advanced forces of darkness pouring across the Material Plane. They fell quickly to their enemies, and the tide of the war turned.
Alessandra toppled several city-states, and they began a cruel torture of the Champions to destroy the morale of those who aligned themselves with them, called the Severing. They separated the Champions’ souls from their bodies and turned their bodies into crystalline statues. They buried these statues across the Material Plane. In time, they perfected this process and were able to kill the Champions outright after several days of torture. A special order, called the Soul Shepherds, tried to recover the Champions who had been severed and reunite them with their souls. They were able to recover a few.
At the end of the war, given little other choice, the final three Titans withdrew. Their remaining Champions fell to the Severing and Respite, the greatest city-state of the age, was overcome. (Apollo mentions watching the fall of Respite and the hopelessness he felt in that moment in Story Magic)
The Great Flood—The Passage from Eldura to Azuria
Surviving urban centers flourished after the War of the Champions, especially Alessandra’s city in The Howling Wastes. The city-states that became Hadvar and Andel-ce Hevra grew in this time as well. However, the prominence in the forces of darkness during this period brought about great unbalance.
Druids, sages, and elves warned of a coming doom; the Material Plane could not bear or balance the rapidity of changes and destruction of the natural world. But the peoples of Eldura ignored them. Calamities increased, and prayers to Kleodna, the goddess of the sea, went unanswered. Waters rose, and the sea reclaimed lands it had left thousands of years before. Yena, too, was silent as fires ravaged the few remaining forests.
Only one woodland remained, the home of the Sapphire Circle. Few are privy to the Circle’s disappearance, but the saudad have their sources, even inside the secret societies that have continued on in the wake of Eldura’s loss. The Sapphire Circle banded together and removed their forest to the Shadowlands. The surface of the prime plane flooded, millions died, civilizations were destroyed, and the world was unrecognizable from what it had been before.
Eldura was no more. As the few remaining peoples sought to pick up the pieces of the lives they had known, they discovered that their world had been remade and was now divided by an impossibly large ocean. It was thus that the Infinite Ocean got her name, and Azuria was born.
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