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TOPIC: The Birth of an Empire
#3481
The Birth of an Empire 8 Years, 3 Months ago Karma: 1  
After the Chaos Wars - The Birth of an Empire

At the start of the most recent Crusade, our company was tasked to return the Sword of Law to the keeping of the Deep Wood elves, as detailed in Kevralyn Soulfire’s and also Zilvan Taranthon’s reports. Within the outskirts of the Deep Woods on Murandir, our group met with an elf named Sir Furos. Sir Furos gifted to us a number of scrolls of lore that bear great relevance to the history of our people, the Empire and issues concerning the unending battle between Law and Chaos. Here follows a translation of those scrolls, which when coupled with the reports of the Crusade will shed some light upon the appointment to office of our new King and the favour of the Spheres which by ancient right, he now bears.

Sky
Commander of the Royal Guard
Sorcerer of the Yellow Guild
Wizard of the Blue School of Magic
Champion of Light
Acolyte of Law


“During the Time of Legends, war between the sub-kingdoms of Murandir led to the unleashing of great quantities of magic and power. This in turn gave rise to a Choas Storm. During which a group of powerful Hepaths were able to create a permanent portal between their own plane of the Abyss and a point on Murandir where the largest of the conflicts was occurring. Furthermore, neighbouring planes were similarly affected by the Chaos influx. Such that the same single point on the Abyss (known later as the Nexus) could also be made to connect to similar points on half a dozen prime material planes. These were points at which large battles also happened to be taking place, and which the most powerful of the Chaos Hepaths were able to turn first into Chaos vorticies, and then into permanent gateways.

After the first shock of the coming of Chaos, and an initial retreat with heavy losses. The remaining forces of Murandir banded together under High King Blaise D’Avandure, and with several other lawful groups from the planes affected by the Chaos Storm and the incursions of Hepaths, began to offer a co-ordinated resistance. A hand-picked group of the most powerful and intrepid adventurers from all the involved planes . Including the reknowned an intrepid healer Moragar, mounted an expedition to the Abyss to isolate the army of Chaos from further support and reinforcement. At length this mission was achieved by the formation of a barrier around the Nexus in the Abyss.

Note: This barrier was much like the Forbidding Wall, which had already been erected around The Valley containing the Deep Woods in Murandir, this was called the Khorran Forest, a part of the kingdom of Michel Rol Dantigh.

As a result, Chaos creatures could no longer reach the Nexus and were therefore unable to travel through to the six connected prime material planes. The end of the Chaos Wars and the death of the remaining Chaos creatures now became inevitable. As affairs settled in Murandir the system and style of government changed, with the High King giving way to an Emperor, and an expansionist, human centred philosophy.

Note: This would eventually drive the remnants of Michel’s people from the plane of Murandir, and cause the inhabitants of the Deep Woods to retreat further into sanctuary.

During the subsequent elimination of Chaos, a process that took many centuries, the people of Murandir returned slowly to their lands to discover the devastation that remained. Only a small proportion of the original inhabitants were left after the Chaos Wars, and the divisions between the old minor kingdoms became indistinct as they sought to make a new life in poor conditions.

High King Blaise and those that followed him ruled well enough, concentrating on the redevelopment of Murandir as a whole. They dissolved the minor kingdoms and formed a new order of rule and a new system of government. They were particularly concerned that, left to their own devices, individual kings with diverse and selfish objectives might cause a repeat of the Chaos Wars. The old chivalric orders were dissolved, as most of the knights were dead, and a hierarchical military structure was devised for all guilds and trades. Most of these changes were designed to lift the spirits of his disheartened subjects, and to give them a goal to strive for. The intention was to put the past behind them and seek success in the new order. In general, the plan succeeded.

One of the other side effects of the Chaos Wars was the change in nature of many of the peoples exposed to the Chaos Disease. Many people were disfigured, disabled or altered in some way – and such alterations were seen to be associated with Chaos. Consequently one of the prime objectives of High King Blaise D’Avandure was racial purity. This was not fuelled by an aversion to other races or creatures, but by a real need to eliminate Chaos. At length, however, this developed into a hatred of different and mixed races, including elevenkind.

Later kings introduced the Inner Council, a council of advisors consisting of representatives from all walks of life and all parts of the realm. In this way, individuals or individual factions would not unduly influence the king.

Blaise’s great, great, great grandson Hirilotan was an academic and historian. He recognised the pitfalls of hereditary succession and deliberately never married and bore no children. He called himself an Emperor rather than a King, and Murandir became the Empire. The symbol of the Empire became the symbol of the Imperial Order of Knights, three overlapping triangles, and the high language of Murandir became the language of the Empire elite.

To ensure a smooth succession from one Emperor to the next, Hirilotan revived and adopted the method by which the High King of Murandir had selected the lesser kings who ruled under him. When an Emperor was to be chosen, a short-list of three candidates was put forward by the Inner Council, with each candidate supported and detracted by representative individuals. The current Emperor then secretly selected a new ruler from this short-list, which was updated from time to time.

The first non-hereditary Emperor extended the goals of the Empire considerably. Not only was the Empire to be ruled by a single authority, but all who did not swear allegiance to the Empire were a threat to its future. After all, those not answerable to the Emperor might themselves initiate atrocities that could cause a repeat of history or undermine the Empire itself. Therefore, it became the Empire’s objective to subjugate all other planes and rulers. In this way the Empire would control and direct all peoples, who would also be protected from themselves and from Chaos.

However, once the Emperor had become a non-hereditary title it was successively undermined by the Inner Council. The position of Emperor became an obvious target for blame, and even assassination, so that new Emperors came and went with alarming rapidity. After a while, Emperors wielded less and less effective power. Eventually, a solution was sought in which the title Emperor became simply one of many positions allocated to members of the Inner Council. Furthermore, the nature of the Inner Council was changing: It was now deemed appropriate that only the most pure citizens of the Empire should hold a place on the council. The Inner Council was therefore replaced by a Senate, in which only those of noble birth could participate.

Today a Senate rules the Empire, tracing its power and legitimacy from the old Emperors and High Kings of Murandir that ruled before them. The Senatus Empire represents a range of powerful and highly conservative interests, and the title Emperor has become a nominal figurehead. Who wields less power than the Patrician, Chancellor and two Praetors. Expansion of the Empire is relentless, and is driven by the need for powerful members of the Senate to demonstrate their authority and achievements by bringing another plane to heel. Thus an aggressive policy of expansion continues.

As a result of the motivations that underpin the Empires expansion, less attention is paid to planes once they have been conquered, and one race is set to rule another whilst new areas of conquest and glory are sought. The true soul of the Empire is a long way from many of the lands it has subjugated. Thus distant parts of the Empire become neglected, and may revert to their previous state. Even forgetting that they were ever occupied, or mingling the conquered and occupying races in new cultures and civilisations. As a result, conquered and associated races, auxiliary troops, garrisons and levies are far more commonly encountered than freeman Empire soldiers. Whilst the High Kingdom of Murandir gave birth to this Empire, it now barely resembles the civilisation from which it came.”
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#3482
Re:The Birth of an Empire 8 Years, 3 Months ago Karma: 26  
It may also be worth noting that during the Crusade, we encountered at least one member of the Empire troops who was non-human. When we enquired about this, the response was along the lines that the Empire were starting to recognise that (some) non-humans could be useful - or at least for this purpose.

Additionally, I only ever observed Praetor Amadeus as being civil towards the non-human element of the Crusade party, although admittedly he is renowned as a skilled Ambassador.

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