Once by the Aegean - the History of the Lanun Nation

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Stories & Tales' started by Eidolon, Jan 9, 2010.

  1. Eidolon

    Eidolon Chieftain

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    I decided to took the pen -er, the keyboard- and begin to do what I like most, writing a story. I've seen some really good ones in these forums (Shadows of a Dream: A History of the Sidar and Rhoanna's Rise, just to point out two) which get me inspired to do one about my favourite civilization, the Lanun. So, here are the settings:
    Spoiler :



    Yes, prince difficulty. I'm not an expert player, and to be honest, I've played only a game at this level. I guess I'm not an example to learn from...




    “The winter hasn’t been as harsh as we expected, milady. To be honest, I can’t recall an hotter spring in… well, many moons. The settlement has been spared from the ice.”
    “Indeed.” Casin opened the eyes she had kept shut for long as she meditated on the shore. She liked to go where few would – on some scattered rocks battered by the tides near the Crow’s Dock – and try to focus her thoughts on the voices she heard inside her head. The Elders said that those were the voices of the Overlords, superior beings that dwelled deep under the sea, and that it was her duty to carefully listen to their words, even if they were incomprehensible, as they were always looking for intermediaries to fulfil their whims. Not that she cared much of what the Council said, especially when it came to religion. Surely the rites of the past had long been lost, and what the Lanun believed in those times would have scandalized their grand-grandparents of the Age of Magic. Nevertheless, she found the voices… fascinating. Usually she ignored them, but sometimes she would stop and try to understand them. It was quite interesting.
    “I’m sure you haven’t come all the way from Innsmouth to here only to discuss about the weather, Ermen. Which so important message had made you run to me?”
    “Milady, Lord Eidolon would like to see you. Immediately.”
    Her expression darkened.
    “Did he tell you why?”
    “No, milady. However, he underlined that it was urgent.”
    “Understood. Lead the way, Ermen, I’ll follow you.”


    The Palace wasn’t really a palace, despite its name – it was a fortress with a few habitable rooms. Quite frugal – and terribly unwomanly, Casin thought as a guard escorted her all the way up to the private studio of the Lord. Everything around her was designed to be functional, with little regard to aesthetics. No statues, no gardens, no marble floors or silk curtains. When she reached the room’s door, she noticed the that only decoration of the chambers where the most powerful man of the island lived in was a blue banner with the Three Waves – and yes, it really looked like silk. The guard let her in, and then went out, closing the door behind him.
    She was in the Lord’s studio, in the highest tower of the Palace – a ridicule cliché, she thought – a room filled with relics of the Age of Magic, a place that seemed to be outside time. What received immediate attention from the visitors was the library that filled one side of the room. There were no less than thirty books – seeing them all together was always strange for Casin. She could not help but feel a deep respect for the Lord, one of the few Lanun able to read and write.
    “Ah, my dear Loveless! Come in, come in. Have a seat. Would you like some beer?”
    “Thank you, Lord Eidolon.”, she answered grabbing the tankard he had put on the desk/worktable.
    “The workers say they’re improving more and more the recipe with every day. Probably in a few moons we should be able to equip a brewing house. But nevertheless. How does it taste?”
    She cautiously sipped the liquid. Not too bad.
    “Not too bad.”
    “Excellent, excellent. Now, let’s get down to business. I want you in the Council.”
    Casin let the tankard fell on the floor, where it broke in a thousand pieces. She stared at the Lord.
    “Me?”
    “Yes. I’ve seen that you have a special talent with economics. I allowed myself to have a look at your pearl-trading family business, and I have to say you’ve done an excellent job as a book keeper. Plus you seem to be extremely charismatic, and with a small gift for diplomacy. I want your experience to be useful for all the Lanun. It’s what the Overlords’ voices have told you, after all.”
    Her jaw dropped.
    “How…”
    “Oh, I hear them as well. They seem to be quite affectionate to you, my dear. They’ve found talent, a talent that I need. Look around you, Casin. The rumors are true – Mulcarn has been defeated and the winter is loosening his grip over our world. Soon we will be able to sail again – to claim this land and this sea as our own. Will you help me in this?”



    They called her Casin the Loveless, for she had never been in love with anyone. Never a boyfriend, would comment the old women when they gathered at the river to wash the clothes and to do their usual tittle-tattle. They would praise her virginity and her good sense – she was famous in town for her beauty and for her efficiency in her job – but would always conclude their talk with a whispered “However!”. That girl was strange, that was it.
    “And what about the Lord?”, someone would immediately continue. “He never gets out from his tower. A friend of mine – she works for him as a cook - says that he’s a wizard. I don’t know what he’s doing up there, but it can be no good at all.”
    Lord Eidolon was strange, indeed. Maybe even stranger than Casin. He had appeared one night after a violent ice storm that had cost the Lanun half of their fishing boats. They had recovered him from the ocean – he was nearly drowning – and later welcomed him into their community. His arrival had been providential for them.
    The Lanun were famous for not having a centralized government, but rather a complex net of vassal-like relationships. They are naturally called by the sea, and therefore the crew formed ties that were even stronger than those with their family back home. Their loyalty went to their Captain, and the Captains often served a more powerful Fleet Captain, which were subjected to the Queen of the Seas. The last Queen had been the voluble Hannah the Irin.
    When Mulcarn broke the Compact and entered Erebus, the Great Ice covered the oceans and literally killed the Lanun nation. People fled from cities that crumbled to dust as the seas rose and covered once fertile lands, taking refuge in remote hideouts. Without a sea to sail upon, their society collapsed, and the Lanun were nearly wiped out from intestine wars and from the unstoppable winter.
    Eidolon brought them secrets from far away… secrets that someone claimed possessed only by the Elohim, far away in the northeastern lands. He radically reorganized the Lanun society, getting rid of the old bonds between the few Captains still alive and replacing them with a strong central authority. In a few months, life came back to normality, or as normal as it could be with glaciers ravaging the known lands. Though Eidolon wasn’t the Head Counsellor of the board that now governed the Lanun, he was the true ruler behind the Elders. He was respected and, after all, loved. For they knew that, if there was someone ready to lead them in the new world, that was their Lord.
     
  2. Vylinius

    Vylinius College Student

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    Awesome story but the told towards the beginning should of been tell. I can't wait for the next chapter. :)
     
  3. cherrysnowdrop

    cherrysnowdrop Chieftain

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    Mouth watering! Can't wait to read the rest, really interesting beginning. :D
     
  4. Eidolon

    Eidolon Chieftain

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    Thanks the support... and lopaz, for your grammar check. I fear I'll really need it :p Here we go with the second installment!

    ***


    “The Great Winter hasn’t ended yet, milord. Pegasus is in prominence. We shall expect cold days ahead.”
    Terenthia was one of the most respected member of the Council, and her ability to search the sky for signs was yet unrivalled by the Lanun. Eidolon knew that he could trust her. Even Casin respected her opinions – something unusual when she had to discuss in the Council she had recently joined as Overseer of Finance. “They’re only a bunch of old stupids”, she used to repeat in every private meeting with her leader.
    “Moreover, one of my servants recently discovered a pile of old pages in one of the chests stored in the Magazine. I would like you to have a look.”
    The aging Elder stood up and slowly reached Eidolon’s seat, giving him some paper sheets turned yellow by the time.
    “Paper.” He commented. “Not parchment, paper.”
    “Exactly. They date back to the time when our people proudly dominated the seas. They are a short work by a (then) minor sage named Fyrn of Vallus, about the lost achievements of the Patrians. I think I can work over them to improve both our earthly and spiritual condition, helping our manufacturers and restoring the lost link with the gods and with the Overlords.”
    The Elders murmured incredulous, while Eidolon’s expression turned in one of disgust, just for a second. Casin believed to be the only one to have seen his change, as he immediately recomposed himself and forced a smile on his face.
    “Please, my friends, order. This is excellent news, Terenthia, and I propose all the money of our small treasury to be directed to you in order to sustain your efforts. Pay as many scribes as you need, but restore the lost knowledge. Do you agree with this?”
    The answer was unanimous.
    “Does someone else have something to say?”
    Falamar, Overseer of the Guard, stood up.
    “The training of a new band of warriors is proceeding steadily despite the hampers caused by the snow. However, to ensure a better protection of the city itself, I would encourage the construction of a palisade. We still don’t know if the other tribes that inhabit our island are all friendly.”
    Casin rose, too, presenting his objection.
    “With the due respect, milord, I think that a band of workers is of more concern at the time. We need to improve the countryside outside Innsmouth itself to help the economic growth of our city.”
    “With the due respect for this charming flower of spring”, he mocked her, “if Innsmouth is razed by a group of orcs, improving the countryside won’t be much a concern. Our hunters coming back from the north will provide some defence, but prudence is never enough.”, replied Falamar. He received an harsh look from Casin, who knew much better than anyone else his reputation for being a ladykiller – who had just begun to flirt with her outside the Council chambers. Repressing a not too leaderlike laughter, Eidolon approved Falamar’s motion, though he promised to begin to gather some workers as soon as the ice outside the city would melt down.


    The small rivalry between the two counsellors went on for some time, without any major incident (except a mysterious infestation of lizards in Casin’s house, and the equally mysterious disappearance of Falamar’s whole imported wines cellar shortly after), until the meeting of the next month.
    “The people of the north have sworn allegiance to our cause” Casin declared in front of the Council “And have offered us tributes that can be valued in six tons of gold.”
    It was a lot of money, and everyone knew it.
    “However”, she continued, “Someone decided to make use of it without noticing the Council, the Lord and, for what matters, me and has used some of it – a small amount, to be honest, for which I thank the Overlords – for some private bargain.”
    She openly stared at Falamar. As a response, the young man just smiled back. Exasperated, Casin accused him. “What do you have to say at your defence, Falamar?”
    Eidolon worryingly witnessed the duel. They were the two Counsellors he trusted more – among with Terenthia – and now it looked like he had to put on fire Falamar’s reputation, only for an excess of initiative.
    “Well, rather than say, I have something to show. With your permission, milord…”
    And he threw a glowing green stone, taken from his pocket, to Casin, who managed to catch it and stared at him quizzically.
    “Mana!”, Terenthia whispered.
    “Exactly. And not raw mana, as the source we possess near the Bear’s Hill. This is pure Life mana, I got it from a… merchant of the Arilian Coast. And guess where does it come from…”


    Eidolon was staring at the ocean. The rhythmical sound of waves infringing on the shore was relaxing, as were the occasional squawks of the pelicans.
    “Yes, a perfect place for meditation. Never saw you here, though.”, Casin said from behind him.
    “It’s better this way – I don’t like to be seen outside the Palace. Please, have a sit.”, he said, pointing a rock near him.
    “You’re worried.”, she pointed out, ignoring the .
    “Yes. The Tomb of Sucellus, so close to our borders… yet so distant. The whole Aegean keeps it out of our reach.”
    “Maybe it’s better this way – it also keeps the ravaging barbarians out of the Isle. I’ve heard terrifying stories from merchants of the Timber Coast…”
    “I know. However, we absolutely need to claim such a site. It only adds to my personal “to do” list. We need to expand.”
    “Not so quickly. We already have managed to unite under our banner most of the Isle - it’s already quite an achievement. Don’t press things too fast, or you may be overwhelmed by them. We need a large boat to travel the sea, harder soldiers to guard the settlement than just clubmen, and don’t forget people to inhabit the colony.”
    “I know, I know. But the Overlords are pressing to get there as fast as we can. The voices are more and more insistent.”
    That made Casin remember of what she wanted to know.
    “What you don’t like about them?”
    “Excuse me?”
    “I saw your expression when Terenthia said that we were moving closer to rediscovering how to proper worship the Overlords.”
    “They’re evil.”
    He said it as if that would be enough. When Casin understood that he wouldn’t continued, she begun her inquiry.
    “And so? There are many evils in the world. We accept it – even if we don’t follow it. They can help our people, much more than the gods worshipped before the Age of Ice.”
    “I won’t oppose you or your people if you decide to follow them, Casin… simply don’t ask me to join you. I’ll always try to help you and guide you, but keep in mind – I’ll never, never, side with evil. I aim to restore the lost greatness of the Lanun as honest merchants, not as wicked pirates. I will never follow the worship of such evil entities, even if they are helping me and you now. And this is another reason to claim the Tomb of Sucellus… it provides life, opposed to the death that the Overlords will bring. I am looking for the perfect balance, as what Erebus truly needs is balance. Balance between good and evil, rich and poor, peace and war, love and hate. Believe me, it will be rewarding.”
    “Will it be, or it’s just your opinion on the matter?”
    None of the two said a word after that.
     
  5. Eidolon

    Eidolon Chieftain

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    “We have rediscovered many of the traditions wrote on the Ancient Papers. Undoubtedly they’ll help in making our people happier, and this will also rise our reputation with our neighbours as a cultured nation. With every day that passes, we are leaving behind us the barbarian habits of the Age of Ice, regaining our rightful desire to be considered a civilization, and not just a tribe. My scribes and I are now working on more concrete problems. There is a small part of those papers dedicated to the description of ships used in the old Patrian ports – I think we can learn how to properly harvest the resources that the sea offers us.”
    Terenthia sat down, as Falamar took the word.
    “I have organized a second band of clubmen to ensure the protection of Innsmouth, as well as completed some training exercises with our first one. They have performed excellently, especially in defence over mountainous sites. Also, the palisade is nearly completed, which…”
    His report was interrupted from a scout that stormed in the room, breathless.
    “How you dare interrupt a Council Session without having been announced!”, one of the Elders erupted.
    “I beg… pardon. We have… found… survivors.”
    “Survivors?”
    “The Elves. It was Dane and me, and we saw a Ljosalfar scouting party from the tower of Cape Hawk. We managed to contact them, and one of their diplomats is coming here!”


    “Greetings from the Summer Court, o humble sea dwellers! My name is Lynn, and I speak for her majesty, Queen Arendel Phaedra of the Ljosalfar. The winter is over, and you should pay homage to the Throne of Evermore!”
    The crowd was silent. The central square in front of the Palace was filled with the inhabitants of Innsmouth, kept at distance by the two groups of clubmen. In the middle, the Elves felt uneasy, away from the forests where they usually lived in and stared at as if they were some strange exotic animals.
    Lord Eidolon welcomed the visitors inside the Palace, where he offered them some of the freshly-distilled ale. They cautiously accepted it, though it was clear that they didn’t liked its smell.
    “I beg you to bring my sincerest praises to Queen Phaedra from the Lanun people, and to offer this pearl necklace as a sign of friendship.”
    “We accept your offer, Lord Eidolon, and give you these fruits, which have been picked by the Queen herself from the undying Yggrasil, the Tree of Life. We have been searching for survivors of the Great Ice ever since we left Evermore. I’m glad to see that your people made it through that trial, and I wish you a prosperous future. I’m sure that Her Majesty will be pleased to hear that her vassals have showed such respect for her people, unlike the savages that now roams the forests.”
    Vassals? Falamar and Casin quickly glanced at Lord Eidolon, who maintained his imperturbable expression.
    “Our homage is the most sincere. However, I fear I may have been misunderstood, surely because my words fail me for the happiness to have rediscovered the Summer Court. The Lanun people offer peace and friendship to Queen Phaedra, and expect to be blessed with the gift of the same on equal terms.”
    A nice diplomatic way to say that they weren’t to be considered vassals of anyone.
    The elves seemed to understood that, as their face gained a little veil of red.
    “Is this a way to say, Lord Eidolon, that you refuse the sovereignty of the Summer Court?”
    “It is a way to say, ambassador Lynn, that I acknowledge the sovereignty of the Summer Court over the lands inhabited by the elven people.”
    “Such a pity. I fear that the Queen will be very disappointed.”
    “I am sorry, ambassador, but I won’t trade the freedom of my people for anything else. Queen Phaedra may be disappointed, but I won’t move from this point… whatever the consequences will be.”
    And he realized from his converser’s look that relations with the Ljosalfar wouldn’t have been easy.


    When the elves left Innsmouth, the Lanun city was quite upset. Despite all the best intentions, the visit had been substantially a failure – the elves had felt insulted in hearing that they wouldn’t receive the oath of the sea people. Which pretty much meant that they had found their first enemy.
    “If they believed that we would go down so easily, ha! They have much to learn.”, commented Terenthia, one day she was adjourning Lord Eidolon of the situation of her research efforts in his tower. She had been blessed by a particularly favourable astral conjunction, which had fastened her studies.


    “Maybe… yet I wished things had gone differently. Did you know if the Elves said anything during their tour of the city?”
    “My sister showed them the Cave of the Octopus, and told me that they were pretty much shocked of our cults.”
    “Fantastic. Guess I should renounce trying to find a way to fix our little diplomatic incident, huh?”
    “Don’t be so drastic. She also told me that they had been quite impressed by our boats design and by the honest curiosity of our people. At first they effectively thought we were a bunch of evil pirates… however, we have regained some points in our favour. They’ve understood we aren’t evil by nature. They’ll learn to overcome our differences, trust me.”
    “I hope.”
    Believe me, there are worst things. Have you heard the rumors?”
    “About what? I’m reported so many rumors every day, that if I’d received a Silverian for each one of them I’d be the richest man on Erebus.”
    “About the abomination of the Seraphics. Stories like that scare the townsfolk… they’re bad. Really bad. It’s not what we need.”
    “They have all the right of being scared. It’s so… disgusting that someone could have ever thought of creating such a monument!”


    I’m sure you understand that, despite all, I can’t just commit our warriors in searching for this place all across Erebus. When time will be ripe, we should act to destroy this monument of evil. For the moment… just try to calm down the people and promise them we’ll do what deserves to be done with this, once we’ll be able to do it. Tell them they can bet my life on this.”


    Not even two weeks after the visit of the Ljosalfar scouts, another delegation was contacted and invited in Innsmouth.


    Despite all the fears, this time the meeting went better. The Bannor were still cautious in their relations, but they said that they had received an excellent first impression of the Lanun people. “Our relations can only improve over time, Lord Eidolon, and I’m sure the news of the contact with your civilization will be really appreciated in Torrolerial. Lady Capria will be interested in tightening our bonds – and should you ever need her help against any sort of evil, you can count on her. Give us friendship and loyalty, milord, and you’ll get back exactly the same.”



    “Unhappiness? What does this mean?”, Eidolon asked from the safeness of his studio, worryingly watching his soldiers down in the plaza trying to scatter an angry mob that had put a few stores on fire.
    “It means, milord, that the people aren’t satisfied with your rule. They demand better life conditions and luxuries. They feels cramped inside the city walls. I guess that is understandable. And they fear the horde of this Orc King, Orthus, who’s currently ravaging the western lands.”
    Lord Eidolon listened carefully to the list of demands that Casin was exposing. However, he didn’t found an immediate solution for any of those.
    “It’s not my fault if the ice hasn’t meted yet in the fields over the Spine river, nor if the Bannor Empire is claiming the Tomb of Sucellus near his borders! What am I supposed to do?”
    “Terenthia suggests you to focus on mass cultivation of the silk fields. Plus, she’s quite sure that with a proper loom she could help in making cotton a widespread tissue… surely better than the poor clothes our people can afford right now. And why not, open the pearl market even to common people. They’re all good suggestions, in my opinion, milord. And…”
    “And?”
    “Probably you should publicly recognize the church founded by Esahin of the Deeps. His interpretation of the Overlords messages is spreading quite fast through the people of Innsmouth. Sustaining him would make many happy.”


     
  6. BuckyRea

    BuckyRea Boldly Going

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    I wanna know if those "voices of the Overlords" they keep hearing has anything to do with that field of magic mushrooms you can see right across the river



    ;) on to part two. This is good writing, Eid, and a fun read. You give me the fractal sense of the game, how inside each little mouse click and AI move, there's the room for thousands of lives and decades of struggle. Keep 'er up.

    PS, are all the tribes in this game matriarchies?
     
  7. Eidolon

    Eidolon Chieftain

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    Actually, it is cotton, not mushrooms :). The Overlords are half-deities, not true gods, worshipped by the religion I founded, the Octopus Overlords. This is what the wiki says about them:

    Spoiler :
    The power beneath the Aegean waves is said to be more powerful than any other, but the Overlords are unfocused and follow a thousand different obscure agendas. The Disciples of the Overlords dare not expose themselves directly to the conflicting commands of their masters and instead use the poor as intermediaries. They are quickly driven insane by the process, which the disciples prefer as it keeps them from manipulating the message. They also share the process of turning a Warrior into The Drown (undead thralls), a process with few volunteers.

    Each word of the name can well describe one aspect of the religion. Octopus is a creature more alien to man (and elves, etc.) than certainly any mammal, and even the lizardmen and others. They are incomprehensible, and thus maddening. Completely alien, and so uncaring of human's fate. Overlords show the view of this religion has of itself. Its leaders serve the Deep Monsters, and their goal is subjugation of the world.

    Their domain is stolen from its rightful steward, or at least subverted. So the overlords are both reckless and insecure in their powers, and thus rarely subtle; they never use a breeze when a typhoon would do.

    The Octopus Overlords themselves are thought to have been created by the most powerful effective dreams of Hemah. Hemah, in turn, is nothing but an effective dream of Danalin, the God of Water who has chosen to sleep rather than wake to farce a world without his beloved Aifons. Hastur, the Lord of Nightmares and Archangel under Mammon, God of Mind, snuck into Danalin's Vault and now whispers in his ear, corrupting his dreams (the life of Hemah and, through him, the Ovelords and all of Erebus) into a horrible nightmare.


    Just to add a little confusion, I'll probably change every now and then a little bit of the official lore, to better adapt it to my story. Feel free to ask questions, though - I'm terribly good in leaving too many things unexplained.

    Unfortunately most of them are. When I chose Casin as the leader for the Lanun I looked forward to make use of that nice "+2: You are charming" bonus she gets in diplomacy with male leaders. Obliviously I ended up in a world ruled by women - I'm near turn 150 in game, and I have met so far only a male-led civilization. Oh, well.
     
  8. Eidolon

    Eidolon Chieftain

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    “Order, my children! Order!”
    The excited classroom immediately silenced as the teacher strode in the room.
    “Today we are going to talk about the period we now know as the Blessing of Oghma. Milato, would you please begin reading at page 45?”

    ###



    It was a time of development and discoveries. Even if far away travellers reported that the Ljosalfar and the Bannor were much more advanced than the tiny Lanun nation, Terenthia and her sages – now equipped with a dedicated place from where to work on their researches– continued tirelessly to recover what knowledge could be recovered from the pages of the Ancient Papers. Lord Eidolon decided to make the priests of the Overlords an active part of the government, thus gaining the support of a large number of the population, as well as actively funding the construction of the first temple. Moreover, he encouraged the enlargement of the fishing fleet (which nearly tripled in less than a year) and finally gained the admiration of the other nations by completing the Heron Throne, a massive harbour based on Patrian sketches, which greatly enhanced the flux of raw materials directed towards the city, boosting Innsmouth’s production capability. This period of peace and prosperity made the Summer Court reconsider their diplomatic relations with the Lanun, which turned from being decidedly annoyed to a more cautious position.

    Following this silver age, the Lanun made their first steps outside their native island, embarking a great number of colonists to claim a fraction of the continent. More precisely, the province of Arilia: the sacred land of Sucellus.



    The year ended in grandeur, with the establishment of the city of Dunwich by the Lanun and the founding of the Fellowship of the Leaves by the Ljosalfar. Rumors also claimed that another religion had been founded deep in the continent, the cult of the underneath goddess Kilmorph. Then, just as the people of Innsmouth begun to domesticate the local cattle that still prospered near the Spine, strange visitors appeared at the gates of the new Lanun settlement.



    Despite their threatening appearance, they turned out to be peaceful. The Amurite Queen, Valledia, personally visited Innsmouth, receiving the honour of being the first leader to enter in Lanun lands. She spoke for a long time with Lord Eidolon in his tower, creating the bases of a strong friendship. Strong enough to allow Amurite wizards travel in the newly-created Province of Arilia, so that they could safely conduct their studies in the Tomb of Sucellus.

    Yet not all the neighbours were so pleasant as the Amurites. Not even a moon later, the Lanun made contact with someone they would have much preferred to ignore.



    Legends about the Calabim had largely spread during the Age of Magic, and even more during the Age of Ice. Many, Lord Eidolon included, had hoped that Mulcarn had exterminated their kind – but it looked like it was a futile hope. Somewhat they had survived, and they were now more powerful than ever.

    The scouting party that met a group of fishermen during a commercial exchange in the Timber Coast was led by a tall, pale figure, almost entirely covered by a black mantle. He said to be Venar, herald of Alexis, the Immortal Queen, and ordered them to bring him to their leader. Frightened to death, the fishermen did as he wanted.

    ###

    “The visit that Venar paid to Innsmouth, my children, is said to be one of the quickest in the diplomatic history of the Lanun nation. Lord Eidolon wasn’t in a particularly friendly mood, as he had just exiled two Zealots of the Overlords that had been caught red-handed while experimenting the arcane rite of the Drown on a poor homeless beggar. He had barely resisted the temptation to experiment the spell over the two by himself. When the guards announced that a Vampire was walking in his palace he would have really liked to add new candidates for the Drowning.”

    ###

    “How you dare, you lord of the Vampires, bring your unwanted presence in my halls?”
    The whole court silenced. They had all heard stories about vampires and their bloodpets.
    “You should weight more your words, Lord Eidolon. You show no friendship for the Immortal Queen, but neither she does for you. Hear me well, mortal! You have chosen to defy the mighty Calabim rather to seek our alliance. You will suffer the consequences of your stupid actions! You’ll regret this day when you’ll see your people enslaved to feed our race! Then you’ll remember of me, Venar of Prespur!”
    And he left the Palace. The past friendship between Hannah the Irin and Alexis, when humans still ignored the dreadful nature of the Calabim, was forgotten.


    Lord Eidolon took his revenge upon the poor fishermen.
    “What did you thought when you brought that abominion in our lands? How could you let that monstrosity walk on the very heart of our nation!”
    His burst of rage was quickly controlled, however, and the Council assured that the seamen suffered no harm from their leader. They were instead rewarded for their courage, having transported a vampire aboard their small fishing boat. The well-known Ballad of the blood-drinker is only onw of the numerous proofs left today of that encounter.

    Then, word came that the Calabim had built a settlement on the Aegean. Acaia’s harbour would ensure that Alexis’ whims in the region were respected.

     

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