A History of the Realms to the East ca 1000-1100
The Great Schism of 1020
The unification of the Eastern Realm reset the reckoning of time for the race of Men from the Giant Wars to what hence came to be known as the Age of the Seven Kings.
The Seven Kings (see 'A History of the Seven Kings' by the author) ruled for twenty years of peace before what came to be called the Great Schism.
A divide took place, quite literally, as the High King's Wizard put a Curse Mark on those who chose not to support the High King after the infamous Trial of Kings, wherein the exile of two traitors was implemented in lieu of death for the crime of Treason against the High King Brennan. (see 'The Trial of King David' by the author)
The people of the ancient city of Aegle, of the Seven Kings, either supported the choice or dissented it to the point that the dissenters were Cursed.
The Curse Mark, later called the 'King's Revenge' or the 'Outcast Mark' lasted only a single generation, but the damage done in that time was great: the terrorizing brought about by the 'King's Guard'—a radical branch of supporters of High King Brennan—resulted quite notoriously in the disappearance of the entirety of the city of Golda, which remains one of the greatest tragedies of the Eastern Realm to date. No other war claimed as many victims, even combining the casualties of the Giant Wars, the Elvish skirmishes of 693, and the Council of Beings in 219, wherein the Dragons argued dual status and devoured the entire embassy of West Ingraham. (See 'Beasts and Beings of the 2nd and 3rd Centuries' by Omri DeSolde)
The King's Guard (1024-1050)
In the journals of High King Brennan, the actions of the King's Guard were never mentioned, nor sanctioned, but the fact remains that the civil unrest of that period was due largely to this band, sanctioned or not, and the members who were caught were never tried for their crimes against the citizens, Kingsman or Outcast alike.
Those citizens who received the Curse Mark were driven westward, out of the King's Keep, which extended to the base of Mt. Xati, named for the first Dragon King to settle in the caves attached there, and now home to the famed Dragon Caves of Upper East Linder and the Jewel of the Realm, the largest Library since the ancient tomes of Zanzabaar, far to the south.
The atrocities committed by the King's Guard ranged from theft and destruction of property – for which the citizens never received recompence—to the burning of their homes or livelihoods, and the imprisonment of those citizens bearing the Curse Mark who served in a position of authority and their families, who ofttimes carried no Outcast Mark themselves.
According to the journals of Jeanette Marx, daughter of High King Brennan's steward, the members of the King's Guard "acted as executioners, coming through the towns, hunting for Outcasts, then stringing them up. No intercession, no court, just sentencing."
She was kept prisoner rather than being killed because she had no Curse Mark, but her mother wasn't so lucky.
Marx describes the other prisoners of her camp in her journals; the wives and children of Mayors of small Townships along the eastern borders of what is now Ingraham, she recorded the conversations she remembered taking place in front of her, concerning the raping and murdering of the Curse-Marked or non-marked 'Outcasts.'
Marx wasn't there in Golda; her camp was nearer to the Township of Stoat's Head, but she described 'the Haunting,' which was felt by every citizen of the Eastern Realm at the moment of the Dark Forest's conception:
"The sky went black as pitch, but it wasn't a natural dark. It was the stuff of Dark Magic, but it was only affecting the un-marked. I remember I saw the mark appear on my arm, just like when I saw Mam's when the King's Wizard set the Curse in the first place…and the guards…were on fire. All of them. But they weren't burning up. But it was dreadful painful, you could tell by looking…and they didn't wake up, when the Dark went away."
She goes on to describe the way the fire left its mark: the Kingsmen had "fire forever after: sun-kisses (freckles) on their skin, and the hair of their heads orange as a sunset. It made it easier for us folk to tell what was what; we'd not changed. Any Kingsman codswallop would tell you that it was us Outcasts who changed, that we live too close to the Cursed Wood, but I was there. And I know who the Gods marked that day."
The Disappearance of Golda (1050)
According to Prentiss Yew, a highly-respected cartographer of our age, the exact whereabouts of Golda would likely have been what is today nothing: a spot to the East of East Linder, but to the Northwest of Ingraham, and to the Southwest of Kingsbury. It wasn't large, especially by the standards of those great cities; Ingraham boasts of upwards of 100,000 citizens today, and Upper and Lower East Linder combined holds almost the entirety of the Outcast race; about 70,000. (If one also considers the southern provinces of Lower East Linder, what they call 'The Waste' as well as the sheer number of Acolytes and Apprentices housed in the Dragon Caves of Upper East Linder, though the Township itself is rather small, and the Village of Lower East Linder holds only 500 or so.)
Golda was, in its time, the Magical Capital of the Eastern Realm. The daughter of Golda's Mayor was one Andraste Titianna-Hugh, the last known Human with real Fae parentage. It was said she possessed the Prodigal Gift of being a Vessel and could take vast quantities of Magic into herself without aftereffect.
Andraste is infamous for being a form often taken by the Spectres of the Cursed Wood, and it is speculated that she was among the first victims of the Haunting. Folk legend says that she was the "first Spectre" and that her Prodigal Gift gave all Spectres the ability to leech the Magical Core of their victims until they become Spectres themselves. (see 'The Haunting: Facts, Fiction, and Legends' by Silvo of Clan Stirn)
I haven't updated this site in forever, but I have been writing. And a lot of my pieces belong to the same general universe. I am going to start to shift those pieces here to see if I get any traffic for them? I am in a writing group, and they seem to enjoy this world and these stories, so I want to see how the rest of the world reacts. :)
Please review if there's anything you see as problematic, or if I should add trigger-warning tags or anything.
Otherwise, I'll just sit back and review the traffic! Thanks!