The Elven Empire
In the distant past, Craxumia was ruled by the ancestors of all Elves in a united Elven Empire. Only the Elves have records of this time, many of them in the form of song. They tell of the birth of Elves in what were once the fertile plains of Middle Meanos. There they created the foundations of a great benevolent empire. This empire eventually came to control all of Craxumia. Approximately 4000 years ago, the Elves began to notice that the previously barbaric humans who lived in the wilds were developing civilisations of their own. Many of the elves wished to nurture the development of the humans. However, a large faction saw the humans as a threat, and wished to exterminate them before they became too powerful. This division eventually led to civil war – the descendants of the Highborn Elves came to the aid of humans who were being massacred by the descendants of the Dread Elves. The empire fragmented into petty-kingdoms, the most prominent being Middle Meanos, Tor Alindril, Illith Asur, Lylas, and Naalthyr. This civil war ended in a stalemate, and the split between the Highborn and Dread Elves has lasted until the present day.
The Growth of Human Power
With the Dread Elves thwarted, the Highborn realms co-existed and thrived with their human allies. The humans learnt rapidly, and soon began to rival the elves in technological and political power. It was not long before the humans discovered the power of Weirdstone. The elves cautioned against its use – they could sense a terrible evil within the green ore. The humans, however, were not deterred. They quickly mastered the use of Weirdstone, producing incredible devices not seen before on Craxumia. Many Highborn Elves became increasingly concerned with this, especially when the humans began experimenting with Weirdstone weaponry. Dread Elven agents began spreading paranoia throughout the Highborn realms in the hopes of provoking war between the allies. The Highborn Elves began to threaten the humans with trade embargoes, which enraged them.
The Great Betrayal
The human realms, now united under a single Emperor and known as The Grand Empire, opened diplomatic negotiations with the Highborn Elves while secretly developing Weirdstone super-weapons. Approximately 2500 years ago, agents of The Grand Empire detonated a Weirdstone Bomb in the heart of Middle Meanos. The homeland of the Elves was obliterated, leaving a dry, desolate desert where bountiful farms once grew. Most survivors fled to the realms of Tor Alindril, Lylas, and Illith Asur. Some, however, sought refuge in the Dread Realm of Naalthyr. Others still fled to the forests, shunning all technology and becoming the reclusive Sylvan Elves. Shortly after the destruction of Middle Meanos, a second Weirdstone Bomb was detonated in the caves below the second largest Highborn realm, Lylas, in New Lustria. The explosion left a huge poisonous, salt-water sea in the middle of the continent where the realm once flourished. The Grand Empire fought a war of extermination against the beleaguered elves for another century, before finally diverting its armies to subdue its own dissenting population.
The Golden Age of the Grand Empire
Some say that with Weirdstone, the Grand Empire constructed great machines like none ever seen before or again – flying carts, teleportation portals, energy weapons, and even spaceships! Unfortunately for The Grand Empire, Weirdstone was a volatile substance. There was the occasional (fatal) mishap, but these were accepted as normal. However, approximately 1500 years ago some kind of terrible cataclysm occurred. The Grand Empire was virtually destroyed by a horrific Weirdstone accident. The citizens of the empire were either killed or mutated. The few who survived abandoned their cities, and fled into the wilds. After about 1500 years, new civilizations began to form. Some were Human, some were not. These city states reached a level of development where they could now seek to expand their borders. All could see that a terrible war was on the horizon, and so a Great Council of Craxumia was called.
The Great Council
The representatives of the other Realms spent close to a year debating what the world should look like, and how it should operate. Borders were defined and trade links established. However, when discussion turned to the collection and use of Weirdstone, the Great Council began to rapidly disintegrate. Soon, threats of war were being exchanged. In some instances, actual violence broke out. The Great Council was ended, and much of the progress achieved was scrapped.
It is now the Year 0 AGC (After Great Council), and the tension between Realms is at the highest it has ever been.