To defeat the lands, Praemortem birthed the giants and trolls into existence. They were plump, horrid creatures with gray skin like stone who wore nothing but small leather pouches around their waists. Their weapon of choice was a club of stone or wood, as it was able to tear down the greatest structure in a single virile swing when mixed with the giants’ brute force. With them came the golems, made of animated stone that was seemingly alive. With momentum behind them, they could charge down any crowd of enemies, unhindered by the need to carry wood or steel.
To conquer the seas, the god of Chaos created the fiercest of all sea creatures. Twisting and writhing its slimy body through the waters, its jaws opening wide enough to swallow entire fleets in one, was the Krakaboa. No ship would sail in this new world; no man would dare go near the sea. Its tentacles would reach the depths of the ocean and pillage ocean-side cliffs. The Krakaboa was unparalleled in its destruction.
With a battalion trailing behind him, Praemortem marched to the gate of Criator’s new universe, yet he was deceived. The gate was but an illusion, and its true form lay at the other side of the Chasm.
With Praemortem tricked, Criator took one final gaze upon the Chasm, turned to the blinding, bright light of his new world, stepped through, and destroyed the passage behind him. Without Order to counter Chaos, the Chasm would undoubtedly fall to malevolent demise.
Criator created a new world of stone and soil, yet it was a barren place with no life other than itself. Yotas, the god of water, and Cheity, the god of nature, were the first two kindlings of Criator. Together they formed the flat land into mountains that climbed their way into the skies, into deep oceans where darkness dwelled, shallow streams where reeds and rocks lay, into forests of tall trees with mushrooms at their feet, and grasslands of green meadows that spanned the horizon. The world was beautiful, yet still void of any life. So, Yotas filled the seas with scaly creatures with fins and gills. Cheity filled the skies with winged beasts that soared to the highest peaks to lay their young. The lands he filled with tough, horned creatures and other flightless beings that could sprint deserts and jump canyons. This world was beautiful, and it was named Antreya.
However, the beauty did not last. Soon, streams ran dry and clouds appeared in the sky, growing darker and darker but never to burst. And so Criator made Xezrys, god of lightning, and handed him a staff that reigned over the skies, the seas, and the falling leaves. He slammed it to the ground and light erupted from the skies to come down and scorch the earth as a deafening crack whipped the land into submission. Water began to fall from the clouds, and the skies became clear. The rivers were full and flowing once more. Xezrys controlled the weather, which governed Antreya, but his power was not all that came from the staff’s might.
Where the lightning had struck the ground remained a crater of fire and molten stone, and the surrounding trees burned so bright that even the rains did not hinder them. From its center was the outline of a burning figure standing amidst the flames. And so came Hestiph, god of fire.
Criator felt there were many aspects of Antreya that lacked control and needed gods. In light of this, he created Hurdes, the god of death, Nuesto, the god of darkness, and Prine, the god of solar, to maintain the balance over life and order in the wondrous land.
All had become well in the world of Antreya. However, while all appeared in balance, some of the gods grew spiteful of each other. They began to fight over sections to control. Yotas was the first to approach Cheity, claiming they each controlled the most essential parts of nature and should have a say in what creatures and life were created. This was declined with laughter and ridicule, which sparked a vigorous standoff between the two. After hearing of this confrontation, Hurdes approached Xezrys on using his lightning to increase the flow of death, to which Xezrys refused with disgust.
The rejection sparked a fight between Hurdes and Xezrys that lasted for weeks. Criator witnessed with disappointment and finally stepped in, pulling apart Hurdes and Xezrys with its might and interrupting the dispute between Cheity and Yotas. Criator proclaimed that things were to remain as they were set, lest the balance be corrupted. While this may have ceased the tempers for the time being, greed and desire for change still lingered.
After months had passed, the gods united together and began to create the people they wished to inhabit the new lands they governed. From the clay ground, each of the gods molded its own vision of people. Prine and Cheity saw beauty and elegance in the clay and crafted tall, thin figures with oddly pointed ears who would be nimble, agile, and skilled with dexterity. They named these the Reyt. Together, Nuesto and Yotas shaped a similar figure, yet shorter, wider and more muscular—whose ears were curved and distinguishable from the Reyt—and they named them the Siopus: beings who would be conservative, yet confident in defense of their property. Finally, Xezrys and Hestiph joined forces to sculpt a being of pure strength, masters of the offensive arts—albeit even shorter and wider again—and they were named the Minoseus.
The gods brought their creations to Criator, who looked upon each carefully and saw the beauty of what had been made. As he touched gently upon each forehead, the clay took lifelike form. The eyelids shuddered slightly as the eyes beneath began to move. Sprawled fingers were now clenched, and their legs began to move ever so slightly as the creatures took their first steps. There were stumbles and falls, yet they found their footing quickly enough. However, it was not what the gods had imagined. The bodies had warmed, yet the eyes were cold and lifeless as if no soul lay within them.
No matter how hard he tried, Criator could not see why the creatures walked like people, yet were nothing but empty vessels. So he created Drundyn, the god of spirit, and she granted souls to the hollow figures. Their eyes filled with light, desire, and gratitude to the gods.
For many years, there was peace in the land, and the people grew to befriend one another and perfect their crafts and skills. Soon, though, as all things do, the people fell victim to the harsh cruelty of nature. A young Siopian boy fell victim to a deathly fever, his skin turning gray and lifeless. The water of the creatures’ settlement had turned against them. This was not the work of the gods but the malice of time reaping its rewards, and hence, they had no knowledge of how to stop such a violent plague. Criator called upon his powers once more and created Wenulys, the god of poison, in the hopes that she would be able to heal the child, yet even she was not strong enough to do so in time, and it was only moments too late when she found a cure for the poison that lay within the waters.
Consumed with grief over her failed efforts, she grew reclusive and sought to conquer all manner of medicine and healing, willing to draw on any power necessary to do so. And so the child passed on and his body was buried, yet his soul was trapped inside. Drundyn felt the screams of the child—the first death in Antreya—and a lonely soul with no place left to reside but below the soil.
Turning to Criator, Drundyn begged that it use its power to create a haven for the souls of the dead, and so above the skies, he created a new world. Drundyn took the boy’s soul there, where she now cares for all the creatures in their time after death. This place will always be known as the Haven.
And so it was that all was once again well with the people of Antreya: the world in balance and the people content in their new lands. The nine gods would watch over the land and care for the Antreyans who chose to follow them.
And so began the First Age of Antreya…
Past: Fall and Rebirth
In the land of Antreya, the people worked together to improve their civilization. Every day showed new challenges and progress toward life improvement, such as learning the magic of the land and how they could use it to make ease of their everyday living tasks and activities.
Conflicts ran low, with only the occasional fight breaking out, and crime rate was practically non-existent. There were no factions, only populated areas full of Siopus, Reyt, and Minoseus Antreyans living and working collectively.
The most popular job of the time was farming. Corn, wheat, and sugar were the most important crops grown. Farmers turned out to be mostly Reyts, but there were still plenty of Siopus and Minoseus farmers, as well. The stock trade was flourishing with all the food, and the economy was stable enough that all citizens lived comfortably with a roof over their heads.
The travelers would make a new journey each week, traveling to a new city and passing by many villages to offer goods from the farmers, craftsmen, and fishermen to sell at reasonable—and often cheaper—prices. The job usually came with risk, but with the peaceful status Antreya was in, the travelers had a carefree attitude and often wouldn’t hesitate to take up a job . . . at least, up until the first disappearance.
After over a year of peace residing over the land, reports started coming in. They would hear of travelers never reaching their destination, caravans and carriages abandoned or destroyed, left on the road with all the belongings still scattered around but not stolen. The people didn’t know what was worse: the fact that people were disappearing or that there appeared to be no motive for the attacks.
More and more disaster scenes were found and reported over the couple weeks following the first disappearance, and then the true terror began. Without any warning, destruction began to commence in the largest city known as Atogmarah. A giant hole had caved in on the surrounding defense wall with one swift movement, and then people began to be killed by an unseen attacker. Through the chaos, the people weren’t able to help anyone other than themselves. Mothers who tried to gather their families to escape were often crushed along with the children. The only people to survive were the ones who looked out for themselves and the lucky few families that lived on the other side of the city.
It took mere hours for the entire city to crumble before their eyes, finalizing the defeat with the fall of their central tower. This was the beginning of the fall of Antreya. Unsure what had just happened, or how to fight back, the citizens settled with the fact that they must travel to a nearby town and seek a new start, as well as warn them of what was happening.
A month had passed since the attack on Atogmarah, and many villages had fallen victim to the same fate. With the population dwindling and the races beginning to blame each other for the attacks, chaos ignited within the few cities that remained. After months of fighting each other, they separated into three factions: Trelys, Resuin and Vyrocin. Each faction was based on a different belief system and mindset, allowing any like-minded citizens in, regardless of race. Then, hope reigned.
A small group of people, led by nine magic masters who each passionately followed one god of Antreya, began to study and discover what was causing these attacks and what could be done to prevent further destruction and death. After being noticed by the remaining citizens of Antreya and being called the “Saints” by some and the “Great Nine” by others, the nine leaders and their followers found a place to practice a mixture of magic they hoped could stop the beasts.
It took only weeks for the Saints to find the answer to this mess, but the consequences remained unforeseen. They had found a way to use the magic within them and mix them together, creating an ultimate oprim attack. The followers of the Great Nine had been studying the locations and movements of the beasts, which they referred to as “Spirit Beasts” due to their characteristics and abilities. They never discovered where the beasts had come from, but they did learn of a meeting, of sorts, that took place with all reported beasts of the land.
On the day of the Spirit Beasts’ gathering, the Great Nine approached the sacred land with their followers to use their newfound strength to stop this once and for all. They chanted quickly in a few different languages, and it all ended with a bright yellow flash. The remaining followers looked around and found that the Spirit Beasts remained, yet all but one of the Saints had vanished. The remaining saint was Ryol, a Reyt within the Vyrocin faction who followed the god known as Cheity. Unsure what to do next, the followers attempted to attack the beasts with their own abilities. However, they quickly found that they no longer possessed any magical properties. It was as though all the oprinom crystals they had gathered for this battle were suddenly drained.
As they began to look around for options, one Siopus shouted “Above us! This can’t be real!” All looked up, including the beasts, to see a newly created land floating in the sky. It was held up by a large, blue, sparkling mist none had seen before. Everyone’s attention returned to the ground at the sound of Ryol, the sole remaining Saint, chuckling.
Fear struck the remaining followers, as they expected doom to follow their actions. At least, until they realized Ryol and one of the beasts had yet to break eye contact. He walked up to the dragon in the center and laid his hand gently on its neck. The followers spat out audible gasps. That was when everything changed, and the rebirth of Antreya began.
Ryol touched the spirit beast and continued to stare it in the eyes before slowly turning back to his team with a smile. “It is time for the Antreyan citizens to unite and begin building once more,” he began as all eyes were focused on him. “I have come to an understanding with Lycrovyx, the dragon with whom I have grown a fond connection, and the dragons have agreed to stop the attacks. She does warn of other beasts that do not agree, but through knowledge will come peace.”
Frozen, the followers of the Great Nine stared at him with horror in their eyes. It wasn’t until the remaining hidden Spirit Beasts made themselves visible, nodded to each other, turned, and left in different directions that the followers believed the statement.
With cheering, they turned to leave as well. But as Ryol attempted to walk away from Lycrovyx, he once again stopped and turned to the beast. Silence fell and their eyes met. Then, in front of all the beasts and followers, Ryol, the Vyrocin Reyt, and Lycrovyx, the dragon Spirit Beast, both began to glow a bluish-green color. Once the glow faded away from them, they began to take on new features.
Ryol began to develop marks of a dragon, sprouting similar horns and gaining scales that matched the brownish-gold tint of Lycrovyx. In turn, Lycrovyx had gained the marking of the Vyrocin faction upon its chest and grown flowing silver-brown hair that matched that of Ryol’s.
Without another word, Ryol climbed on Lycrovyx’s back, turned, and flew away from the scene, heading toward the new land in the sky. The followers, unsure of what else they could do, turned and headed back to the homeland to inform the people of the recent events.
Present Day: The Story So Far
For centuries the land of Antreya has been mystical, filled with magic and deities. Magic, known as ‘Oprinom,’ was granted by the deities, or gods, and was a part of the everyday life, although each person differed in type and strength. Few were actually strongly favored by the deities and the few who formed the upper echelons of society held most of the oprim power.
Throughout the ages, those who were capable of harnessing their magic worked for the better good of the populace and the nine strongest were known as “The Saints” or “The Great Nine.” As time went on, various organizations began to spring up, each having a specific god as the focus.
The nine largest of these organizations were led by one of The Saints and many viewed these nine organizations as the strongest. The Saints were necessary leaders of these groups because they were able to maintain peace, even when conflict arose. Although no one knew where The Saints came from, it was rumoured that the gods have grown restless. The counter-rumor is that corruption in Antreya had forced the gods to take action. Either way, the people of the land were thankful a group has been maintaining peace.
Unfortunately, the harmony didn’t last long. Disturbing reports of horrible events happening throughout Antreya started to come in, and at an alarming rate. News of trade caravans and travelers going missing without a trace. Their caravans and personal belongings still remained at the scenes, but no bodies or tracks were ever found to follow.
Not long after, the first sightings were reported from a handful of survivors from a small fishing village near Lake Nuaga. The stories included tales of unknown creatures appearing in ethereal form and attacking the village, leaving few survivors. As the days continued, more and more sightings were reported of creatures unlike any had ever seen before. The people quickly deemed the vicious creatures as “Spirit Beasts.”
Spirit Beasts had all sorts of forms and sizes. They ran amok all over Antreya and it quickly became apparent that these beasts could not be stopped. Entire villages began disappearing overnight, leaving no survivors behind. Armor and weapons proved to be ineffective. Even the most powerful oprinom seemed to leave the beasts unscathed.
Many years of these horrors went by and the situation grew dire enough for the indigenous people of Antreya to be forced into hiding; which began the days of struggle. The fight for survival became a daily effort.
Meanwhile, The Saints had formed together and began putting their powers to the test. After years of research and practice, they found the answer. They were hoping their effort would save the remaining people. Using their powers together, the oprinom that will save Antreya was created, but this new ability came at a great cost. The Saints were never seen afterwards and other mages who were part of The Great Nine lost all of their powers.
Without the help of The Saints, Antreya faced a new challenge. Civilization must be restored, the truth of where these Spirit Beasts came from must be found and the organizations, now broken down to three groups called “Factions,” must be formed together under a similar goal to restore life and order. As the Antreyans began their tough journey of restoration, the people remain timid and defensive.
Due to the nature of the attacks over the past few years, many people believed that only one faction had the correct ideas and showed hostility towards other factions. Others believed that a unity must be formed in order for the land to return to how it once was. The mixed beliefs caused many disputes, but eventually the factions created, or claimed, cities which would favour them, as well as other cities who will despise them.
After months of building, gathering, discussing, and fighting, each faction had claimed locations that best suit them, built training fields, developed combat styles, and had created a permanent separation of the people. Now interactions with each other can range from friendly to deadly hostile, with very little notice.
Moving forward to today’s age in Antreya, it’s time for adventurers and truth seekers to step up, get out, and find answers. Collaboration with other factions is key and the fear of finding information you don’t want to know must be wiped away. It’s time for the training they were raised with to be put to good use. Whether they choose to do this with a group or completely alone is up to them, but the time for action is now!