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Rathaus Denmora and Sandalphon timeline question

Discussion in 'Fall from Heaven Lore' started by lumpthing, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. lumpthing

    lumpthing generic lump

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    This is my understanding of the chain of events involving the books of Laroth:

    1) The Once-Elves escape Laroth's dungeon and, stealing artifacts including the Books of Laroth, found a kingdom in the Shadow Rift
    2) Auric Ulvin, accidentally brings sunlight into the Shadow Rift for the first time.
    3) Taking advantage of this distraction, Rathaus Denmora, a shade, enters the Shadow Rift's portal to the Netherworld and claims the Netherblade.
    4) The Once-Elf prince Varn Gossam is blinded by the sunlight and has a vision of Lugus. He leaves the Shadow Rift with the Books of Laroth.
    5) Somehow, the Books of Laroth fall into the hands of Sandalphon, who uses them to teach people how to become immortal shades.

    I'm getting this from two sources:

    1) The FFH wiki entry for Rathaus which is identical to the civilopedia entry:
    Spoiler :
    The once-elves startled at the alarm. Even the obsidian-clad Perditioners broke their stoic watch to look toward the vortex. The ever-night was gone, light tore through the curtain that contained the veil and blinded the warriors who had never seen sunlight before.

    Rathus moved through the once-elves massed at the city's edge. He moved among them unnoticed, an easy feat for a shade who often found it more challenging to be recognized or remembered by those he knew. After decades spent like this, you become something other than mortal, the world is as much a ghost to you as you are a ghost to the world. And you pay close attention to anything that stands out from that haze.

    2) This old thread:
    Spoiler :
    Auric reached for the only mana source he could find, which he only barely felt through the mist. He didn't really know what he was doing nor did he know how to control the power he channeled, but he had natural talent enough to pull the sunlight though the barrier, and to destroy the mist in the process. This merged the Shadow Rift with Creation, blinded Haerlond and his army, and gave Varn his first vision of Lugus. They went their seperate ways after this, Auric eventually finding Letum Frigus and trying to become the God of Ice and Varn going on to found the Empyrean and become the first priest of Lugus in over 600 years, but they kept a deep respect for one another.

    Varn and Talia took the Books of Laroth with them when they left the Shadowed Vale. Eventually, somehow, I don't know when or how, these tomes fell into the hands of Sandalphon. In them, he found the secrets to immortality. He and his followers used the rituals within to become the first shades, men who gained immortality

    Something wrong here: How did Rathaus become a shade before Sandalphon learnt the secrets of becoming a shade? Am I misunderstanding something or is there an inconsistency? I assumed from the sources above that Rathaus entered the Shadow Rift at the same time as light broke through for the first time. But maybe Auric brought the light in, then the Once-Elves somehow restored the darkness, then Rathaus somehow broke it again a long time later.
     
  2. Diamondeye

    Diamondeye So Happy I Could Die

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    I am not well-wandered in the Sidar lore, I just wanted to make a really snide remark.

    Rathaus is a Holy Roman Unique Building in Civ IV BtS.
    Rathus Denmora is the Sidar hero in the Fall From Heaven II mod for the same game.

    On topic, I wouldn't find the restoration of the darkness realistic. The first text you quoted (Rathus) specifies that it is the first time the onceelves see sunlight. So Rathus must've known how to become a shade before Sandalphon taught the rest of the Sidar it.
     
  3. lumpthing

    lumpthing generic lump

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    haha, well that's worth pointing out too

    I agree that the restoration of the darkness is unrealistic. Although it may be that the once-elves mentioned in the pedia generation were all born AFTER the darkness was restored. I think it's more likely that whoever wrote the Rathus pedia entry didn't think through the order of events.

    Though to flesh out your explanation, it's also possible that it Rathus was himself a once-elf who learnt the secrets of waning from the books of Laroth when they were still with the once-elves. Then he accompanied Varn Gossam in fleeing the Shadowed Rift and ended up encountering pre-shade Sandalphon and teaching him the secrets.
     
  4. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    Your time line is as good as could be expected based on publicly available info, but is not quite right. Kael cleared it up for me in a PM back in August in response to questions I asked after proofreading a draft of Ashes of Brigdarrow for him.


    Spoiler My time line, which is likely reveling too much :

    Laroth sensed a change in Kylorin's heart before the Emperor himself knew he was soon to repent.

    Laroth fled the empire in anticipation of the Kylorin's rebellion.

    Laroth hired a mercenary band led by Arak the Erkling and took them to the Isle of Nemora, presumably to fortify themselves there to resist Kylorin's eventual attack.

    After deposing of most of his disciples, Kylorin followed Laroth trail to Nemora. He found the island uninhabited. Its most notable feature was a seemingly bottomless well, easily wide enough for his largest galleons to fall, with perfectly vertical flawless walls of a stone that looked like granite but was far stronger. The island was a pristine paradise, the most beautiful place Kylorin had ever seen. It seemed more like heaven than Erebus. Kylorin declared it sacred ground and ordered that his troops leave and never let anyone come back to disturb it.

    Laroth had in fact descended into the well with his mercenary band. Haerlond Gossam and his younger brother Varn, who were but young children (by elven standards, which could mean 80 years old) at the time, descended with their father Arak.

    Arak began treating his mercenaries as slaves. (Perhaps during this time or perhaps during their initial employ, they forget the Elven language and adopt the Patrian language and customs instead.) After spending centuries in the Otherworld without aging, Arak started a revolt.

    Arak stayed behind to fight Laroth, providing a distraction and holding the portal back to Erebus open for his sons to lead his followers out of Laroth domain. They bring several artifacts with them, including the Heartstone and the Books of Laroth. (Laroth probably let them go so that these would find their way back to Erebus.)

    Haerlond becomes a king and presides over the building of a great city within the Shadow Rift. The Once Elves build a grand bonfire in front of the portal back to the Underworld, which is atop the Malachite Palace. The rest of the city it lit only by a faintly luminescent fungus.

    They build a grand library, which housed The Books of Laroth as well as other numerous masterpieces by Erebus's greatest authors who could not complete them during their lifetimes. The library is small compared to that of most elven cities, but all its works are invaluable. It is lit with lots of fungus and mirrors, making it almost blinding bright by Once-Elven standards but still lower than average light by the standards of surface dwellers.

    They establish a code of laws which prevents anyone who has seen the Otherworld from ever returning alive to the world of the living. The Obsidian Guard is formed to enforce this.

    A powerful curse is placed on the the area surrounding the Well of Shadows (the Erebus-side entrance to the Shadow Rift) that confuses and disorients anyone else trying to find the well. Actually, this might have been naturally occurring. What is important to note is that lThe Once Elves create a few special charms to counteract the curse and give them to some friends in the outside world. It is not clear if some few Ljosalfar wandered into the rift first, or if they waited a generation and sent Once Elves born in the rift to the surface to make contact.

    Guests who never venture into the Otherworld are free to study in the library, make copied of books, and leave undisturbed, so long as they. Most bring good to trade for this privilege, but those with nothing are allowed to. Those who have seen the land 0f the dead may never leave alive.

    Sandalphon was one of the Once Elves guests, perhaps the first human allowed in. He was the first to discover the tome containing the Waning ritual. He made a copy of it and brought it back with him to share with his people. His copy was not perfect, but was good enough for use in that one ritual. The original remained in the Archives in the rift, perhaps for centuries before Auric brought the vale down.


    A certain Necromancer whose loyalties secretly lie with Laroth becomes Haerlond's most trusted adviser, and tries to turn the decent but often harsh and overly pragmatic king against his brother.

    Talia and Rathus Denmora were guests in the library at the same time. Rathus was already a shade, but wanted to study the original text rather than a copy. This may have let him perform the ritual more perfectly, gaining the ability to become completely invisible.

    Gossea the Dwindling was there at the same time, and used the opportunity to steal the Heartstone. As someone saw a woman steal it and Talia was the only female guest supposed to be there, Haerlond (at the necromancer's insistence) accused and imprisoned her.

    Gossea passed though Brigdarrow during her escape. Their Theign had her belongings searched, and some saw the Heartstone before she left. She hired 3 goblin tribes to destroy the village and kill all inhabitants to keep it a secret. Only three children (including Auric) survived.

    The children made it into the Rift, as Auric's magical affinity made his hear the curse as voices trying to confuse himself instead of being disoriented.

    They were briefly imprisoned with Talia, but Haerlond let them go. During this brief time Talia begins training Auric to be a mage, and is astounded with his rate of progress.

    They spent some time in the library, where Auric studied an anachronistic tome by a high priest of Mulcarn who had witnessed his god's death. (Note that the Once elves had left the Otherworld before Mulcarn's death and never went back, so there is no way they could have had this book. This part has probably been rewritten.)

    The necromancer encourages Dain (one of the Illian children, not the Casawallen) to go see his father in the Otherworld. Before reaching what appears to be the home where he grew up a dead man warns him that he does not belong, that he will get caught up in an eternal dream if he continues, and that without his help the necromancer will murder Talia and steal her soul in a ritual meant to force her to confess to stealing the Heartstone, as punishing her is easier than finding the real guilty party.

    Rathus Denmora uses the Dain's passage into the Otherworld as cover for his own.

    Dain returns and tells this to Varn. They break Talia out and try to escape.

    When about to be overtaken by Obsidian Guard Chariots, Talia damands that Auric do something.

    Auric begins to channel the Sun itself. He would not have had the time to do so had not the guards been briefly distracted by the reopening of the portal to the Otherworld as an invisible Rathus steps out of the Netherworld with the Netherblade.

    Auric succeeds to do far more than he intended. The Sun breaks the vale, unites the Shadow rift with Erebus, and crashes the Obsidian Guard Chariots as they are driven by summoned creatures incompatible with the physic of Erebus.

    Varn sees Lugus in the Light.

    Some of them make it out alive.

    Varn wanders into the Desert of Myrh, is taken in my the Malakim, unifies the Lightbringers in worship of Lugus, finds the Mirror of Heaven, and codifies the doctrine of the Empyrean.

    Auric Ulvin finds the site of Mulcarn's death, take command of the Illians, and comes very close to becoming a god.

    Rathus uses the netherblade in a vain attempt to kill Ethne before she can make use of secrets which the Elohim monarchs have held since the Age of Dragons and summons Basium.

    Decius kills Rathus, takes the Netherblade, forces Sandalphon to reveal its secret, and takes it to the final battle against Auric rather than freeing Ethne's soul or giving it to Os-Gabella.

    Rhoanna and Falamar together wield the Netherblade to slay a mostly-ascended Auric.

    Auric's soul meets Ethne's in the Netherworls, where they are recruited by Laroth.

    Laroth defeats Arawn, ascends to godhood, and ends all life in Erebus???
     
  5. lumpthing

    lumpthing generic lump

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    Thanks verymuch for sharing that secret, highly informative information. No wonder I got the timeline wrong, both my sources were incorrect:
    1) The Rathus pedia entry falsely claims that Rathus steals the Netherblade before Auric destroys the Rift
    2) In the old forum thread it was said that Sandalphon acquired the secrets of the Books of Laroth after Varn had left the Rift.

    Am I right in understanding that the Erebus-side entrance to the Shadowed Rift was the island of Nemora? So when the Rift collapsed the survivors found themselves on Nemora?

    Interesting politics link in your signature by the way. Always encouraging to hear from people who hate political echo chambers.
     
  6. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    Rathus does get the Netherblade before Auric destroys the veil separating the Shadow Rift from Creation; almost immediately before. They were in the Rift at the same time, but never met.


    The mistake in the old thread was my fault. That was how I put things together before I got access to any privileged information.



    No, they did not exit on Nemora. The Well at Nemora is not the same as the Well of Shadows where the Once Elves dwelt, in fact it is nowhere nearby. Auric emerged into the Whispering Woods (I think that's what the place is called; I'm now typing on my brand new laptop I got as an early Christmas present! I haven't transferred my files from the old one yet, and am too lazy to go upstairs.), which is located on the mainland somewhere near the border between the Illian and Ljosalfar lands.

    There are several Wells of Creation that lead from Erebus to the Netherworld. If I had to guess, I'd say that here 21, each meant to draw in the souls of those closer to each of the 21 precepts of creation. (Hmm...I'm pretty sure that Kael refered to the Wells in general as Wells of Creation, but it could be that the well on Nemora was THE Well of Creation, the pathway to the netherworld created by Amathaon.)


    The Isle of Nemora used to be a paradise, but in the Age of rebirth times have changed. This is where Ceridwen took Tebryn Arbandi when she rescued him from hell. Tebyrn closed its Well, making it impossible for things to truly either live or die in the area. Souls not meant for this world corrupted the land, turning the paradise into the second most hellish place on Erebus. I am speaking, or course, of what is commonly known as The Dead Lands.

    I surmised from Ashes of Brigdarrow that Gossea the Dwindling (one of Tebyrn's lieutenants from The Black Tower scenario) stole the Heartstone becuase it was an essential part either of the ritual that closed the Well of Creation, or the ritual that created the barrier that protected Tebryn's lands. Kael said I was wrong on both counts, and would not give a reason for the theft.
     
  7. lumpthing

    lumpthing generic lump

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    Sorry I should have that the pedia entry indicates that Rathus takes the Netherblade just after Auric destroys the veil.
     

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