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"Grandfather, I’m scared. People say that the Demons are returning to the land. Can you tell me a story?"

"Well child. I’ll tell you the story of a great war, of a battle and how we came to be on these lands. Will you listen?"

"Yes Grandfather."

"Well then, I’ll begin

Many thousands of years ago the Gods walked this earth. They were wise and kind and looked after their children, guiding them, teaching them and allowing them to grow. They created a great nation called Calinthea which in the old language means land of the Gods. This was the perfect city and all within it lived in peace and harmony together. But there were other creatures of this earth - great Demon Lords, older than the Gods themselves. They were jealous of the children of man and started to speak to them in their dreams, teaching them dark secrets and in exchange for favours and the souls of man they gave man the cursed secret of sorcery. An ancient dark magic that feeds from man’s more base instincts … Lust, Gluttony, Avarice, Sloth, Wrath, Envy and Pride.

The dark power of sorcery corrupted many of the Calinthean, bringing the walls of the once great city down. It was at this point that the first of the gods – those born to Gaia herself – took actions. A great war was fought across the lands that destroyed the great civilization and slew millions of people. At the end of the war the gods performed a great ritual called the Sundering that banished the Demon Lords from this land for a thousand years. The sundering also banished the gods from their people for the same period of time.

The remaining Sorcerers and their followers fled to far-away lands. They vowed that they would return when their Demon masters returned to this world. It was the Fae that took in man in the end. They called them the Maestir – the Outcast. They trained the first druids you know, and taught them about the spirits that dwell within everything on this land. The druids were able to speak to the spirits and use them to help man settle. The power to control the spirits is something called Wyrd – it dwells within us all. It is this that allows the physician to remove grievous wounds, allows the blacksmith to make armour that cannot break, allows a warrior to strike a blow that will cut through armour, allows a herbalist to make potions and poultices. Those that call upon the realms of Vitae and Shadow cannot access their Wyrd but otherwise all those that were trained in their skills use this power to perform great powers."

"Grandfather, what about the Demons?"

"I was just getting to that, you need to have patience. It was a thousand years past the Sundering that the first of the tainted was born. By this time the Humans were now the most plentiful race in these lands. They had forged their own kingdoms and although there had been many wars, there had also been great achievements. But, back to the Tainted.

To human parents both hard working and pure a child was born with horns and a tail - like the Demons themselves. The tainted child was killed and the druids called forth spirits to protect the town. But the stories have it that more Tainted were born and some weren’t killed. It was at this time that some of the priests who remembered the old rituals started having visions - the Gods themselves spoke to them and told them that they needed to return to Calinthea.

So the Rulers of the five kingdoms had a great meeting - one during which an Oath was sworn between each of the lands. They would take selected people back to the old ruins - across the seas. But, none of the nations would go without the others. They would stand upon the lands of the Gods together. There was little trust at this meeting, for each thought that they were trying to get the better of another. The dangers of Sorcery have been forgotten and men warred amongst themselves for power and land.

It was at this time that demons started coming to our lands. They seemed to be hunting certain people, and capturing them to perform foul rituals to their demon masters. Humans, tainted and the Risen alike, the demons were stealing the souls to give to the Demon Lords to speed their return to this land. The priests of each nation came together in the second great meeting. Through days of fasting and prayer they found that the people that these demons were hunting were those who’s lineage to one of the first gods was pure.

So the kings have decided to take these people – those pure of the blood of gods back to the land. With members of the lesser races joining their warbands they plan to travel across the great seas and see what they can find. Destroy any demons or Sorcerers that they find there and claim the land in the name of the Gods."

"So, does that mean there is peace?"

"Peace is a strong word, the corruption of the Demon Lords runs deep within our souls. The great sins corrupt us all, even the Kings. I do not think that the king will allow any of the other nations to get an upper hand. It is said that the treasures and secrets of the Gods themselves lie on this land - and there are great circles where the priests’ rituals will speak to the gods directly and allow their power to manifest into blessings and curses.

There will not be peace but there will be co-operation. And the land of the Gods will be safe… and the demons will stop coming for you. Your parents are strong in the ways of the Spirits and can trace their heritage back to the Gods themselves. Nothing will stop them.

Now sleep happy thoughts young man, and keep training."

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