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Chapter 2: The Lost Age
A Tale of the Three Planes
As the stewards of Aluron, Order and Chaos were created for the singular purpose of protecting their void. Out of jealousy, Chaos had chosen to abandon his post, and the demon's machinations were on the verge of destroying everything.
Order made several attempts to reason with her fallen counterpart, but all of them failed. Chaos chose the name "Shar" as an act of defiance—a play on the ancient elven word for demon. If that's what the elves believed him to be, then that is what he would become.
Shar wanted to destroy the world. He wanted to bring Aluron to its knees, eliminate Order, and reshape the void in his own image, but such an outcome was impossible.
Order and Chaos had created the world together. Unlike other stewards, they had infused their very essence into every corner of their creation. They weren’t just the stewards of Aluron, they were part of it. The void needed both of them if it was going to survive.
In a final act of desperation, Order devised an ambitious solution. She would tear the void of Aluron into three pieces, which would be an easy task in its current state. Then she and Shar would each be sealed away in one of those new realms, and the world they created would be isolated within the third.
The three planes would remain tethered to each other, thus allowing Aluron to sustain itself by taking in the essence of both Order and Chaos as the stewards originally intended, but the barriers between the planes would prevent them from shaping the world the way they once did. Aluron would be left alone, and balance would be restored.
Though Order was successful in forming the three planes, it wasn't enough to save the void, as the Demyx still remained and continued to enact Shar's grand schemes, but now there were no gods to stand in their way. Aluron continued to topple, and it was at that moment that the Makers intervened.
Now, one would assume that a group of all-powerful celestial beings stepping in to save their creation seems like a rather obvious outcome, but this was an entirely unprecedented move, and no one on the mortal plane knows why it happened.
The generally accepted theory is that this was the first time they intervened simply because it was the first time they needed to. Of course, many self-proclaimed experts would argue that this explanation was far too convenient. There must be more to it—some hidden truth. There are several organizations throughout the history of Aluron dedicated to finding that truth—most notably, perhaps, the Order of the Grand Covenant, but we’ll get to that later.
For the moment, what matters is that the Makers finished what Order had started. They put all of creation into a deep sleep and set about repairing the damage Shar had caused. Their first course of action was to seal the Demyx away in Shar’s plane. As beings of order corrupted by chaos, the Demyx were unstable, and that instability put all of Aluron at risk.
Most mortal belief systems (including the Demyx) saw this as a punishment, but it was a pragmatic decision rather than a vengeful one. Due to their corruption, Shar’s plane was the only place the Demyx would be able to survive. While it is true that the Makers wield a power far beyond mortal understanding, true to their name, they are unable to destroy anything. They couldn’t eliminate the Demyx, so they needed to find another way to save Aluron.
With the Demyx threat contained, the next order of business was the stewards. Aluron needed caretakers, and it was clear that the dichotomy of Order and Chaos was not equipped to handle that task so the Makers created a new pantheon of demigods to take the job:
Orgoth, God of the Quake; Lyra, Goddess of the Tempest; Kethis, Goddess of the Maelstrom; Varnesh, God of the Flame; Senna, Goddess of Nature; Iirnu, God of War; Moratu, God of Magic; and Torva, Goddess of Time.
Like their predecessors, the members of this pantheon were neither good nor evil, but each one was imbued with fragments of both Order and Chaos and was given dominion over a single aspect of creation to ensure that no one member could pull rank over another.
If your fields produced a bountiful harvest, then you praised Orgoth for the blessing, but if the crops withered, then you cursed him for the misfortune. The composition of the pantheon made it more difficult to attach a blanket label of good or evil to any individual god. Some may have been marginally more chaotic in nature, but the days of unilaterally blaming a single god for all misfortune were over.
With the new pantheon in place, the only thing that remained was to awaken the elves, but this presented a problem. Even given the assurance that the Demyx had been eliminated, what was to stop the elves from venturing across the world to the caves of Kirtar in order to see for themselves? Further, upon their arrival, what would prevent them from falling victim to the same corruption?
In order to protect the world, the Makers elected to erase their memories. Then, as an extra precaution, the forest that stood between the elven lands and the caves of Kirtar was filled with an assortment of monstrous creatures and twisted with a powerful magic designed specifically to keep people away from the caves.
As for the elves, within their purged memories, fragments of the truth remained: Order had abandoned them, Shar had betrayed them, and as punishment, the two gods and their servants had been cast out and replaced. The elves awoke to a new world without war and began to rebuild their civilization.
The lingering fear of Shar remained, however, and while they acknowledged the new pantheon to some degree, the revitalized elven religion ceased their outright worship of any singular god as many questioned whether the new pantheon could ever truly be trusted. Many elves chose, instead, to show their new protectors a sort of casual respect, recognizing that the gods, while powerful, were likely fickle and undeniably fallible.
Building Aluron is just one part of this multi-faceted disaster. There’s plenty to see, and plenty more still to come. If you want to hitch a ride on this chaotic rollercoaster, subscribe now!