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Dark Age
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In the Third Age, known by many as the Age of Tears, the world of Tyroth was chaos. Plagues spread like wildfire, bandits roamed the land unchecked, and the world was immersed in a bloody war.

The Council of 49 Kings had broken apart in the great schism, and began warring with each other over petty boundary disputes that escalated into the Hundred Years War. Many heros and champions of the age fought and died in those days, and the commoners' lives were full of toil and strife. Slowly, kingdoms were conquered and consolidated into massive empires. These empires rose and fell like the tides.

For many generations, there seemed to be no end to the war in sight, But slowly, two great empires arose from the ashes of the other kingdoms that had once controlled Tyroth. One was ruled by the tyrant, Argile Blackhand. Argile employed the use of sorcerers from the Tower of the Sightless Eye to cast the plagues that were so rampant across Tyroth. After weakening his opponents with his vile sorcery, Argile would send in his horde of barbaric savages, known as The Immortals. The Immortals were undefeated in battle, and would slaughter the populous of entire cities, men, women, and children, in their blood lust. Commanding such a ruthless army, it was a small wonder that so many kingdoms surrendered to Argile without a fight.

The other empire was led by Aginyon Droganon, a famous Paladin of the Church of Light. Aginyon used diplomacy and reason to unite his empire, and only resorted to open warfare when no other choice was left to him. Although he preferred diplomacy to war, Aginyon was a brilliant tactician. He was trained by the Knights of Valor, an ancient group of warriors that swore to protect the weak and uphold the codes of justice in Tyroth. Aginyon tried time and time again to bargain with Argile to end the war, but Argile would not stop until the whole of the world was his. After seeing his opponent would not surrender, Argile commanded the archmage Faringat to summon a Prince of the Nine Hells, a Daemon called Aldurast, to kill Aginyon and his family.

After arriving home from yet another fruitless meeting with Argile, Aginyon found his palace in ruin. His guards and servants lay broken and lifeless, their remains scattered across the grounds. Aginyon drew his kingsword, Justice, and ran into the palace screaming for his wife and children. Upon reaching the great hall he saw his only son, Kain, valiantly attacking the great demon with a longsword taken from a dead guard, furious over not being able to protect his sisters and mother, who were lying broken on the floor. But as fate would have it, when Aginyon burst into the chamber, Kain was distracted, and the demon took advantage of the moment to disembowel him with the swipe of a claw. Aginyon watched in horror as the demon crushed the life out of his only heir.

Glancing at the broken bodies of his daughters and wife lying on the floor next to his dead son, Aginyon let out a wail of torment, screaming as a man who has nothing left to live for. Watching the demon begin its slow advance on him, a calm came over Aginyon as he felt the presence of God and called upon his power to aid him.

Thinking to end the battle quickly, Aldurast summoned his own power, and enveloped Aginyon in a pillar of flame. The flame was extinguished as quickly as it was summoned and Aginyon was hardly singed. Muttering a spell of knowing, Aldurast recognized Aginyon for the paladin that he was, and knew his magic held no power over him. The demon drew his own sword, a firebrand forged in deepest recesses of hell, and met Aginyon blade to blade. As Aginyon advanced, Justice shone with an argent white light. Lightning arced between the two blades as they met and ground shook with the ensuing battle. Aginyon's rage was a righteous one, and he refused to bend to the fury of the demon. Blow after blow, hour after hour, the opponents fought a battle the likes of which had not been seen since the beginning of time. Both Aginyon and the demon were a multitude of wounds and they both knew the end was nearing for one of them. However, the demon was not used to such fierce fighting, and as his power diminished he stumbled to a knee. Realizing his own strength was not endless, and another opening would most likely not appear in this lifetime, Aginyon parried the demon's last desperate strike and drove Justice home. ble to maintain the energies that kept him on the material plane, and shocked that he was defeated by a mere mortal, Aldurast was banished back to the hell from which he came.

Aginyon fell to the floor next to his family. Wounds crisscrossed his arms and chest, and every breath was a struggle. Crawling to his wife, he was amazed to find her still alive. Looking at her wounds he knew she was too far gone to heal. Holding her in his arms, he watched the last dying embers of life fade from her eyes and with her last breath, she made him vow his undying loyalty and she promised to wait for him at the Gates of Heaven. A holy light enveloped Aginyon as he wept over his slaughtered family. He watched in amazement as his wounds closed leaving only small scars. Later that night he stood over the graves of his family and the whole empire mourned his loss. Drawing Justice across his arm he raised his eyes to the heavens. As a ray of light from the one of the twin moons mingled with his blood, he swore an oath which no man could break, to have no mercy on Argile.

In the morning, he and his army departed the capital and advanced on Argile's horde in the burning plains. Argile, always the coward, sent Faringat and his sorcerers to cast a meteor storm to kill Aginyon and his army. Upon completion of the spell, Faringat felt a wall surrounding Aginyon and his army, as if God himself had stayed his hand to protect them. Suddenly, Faringat screamed in agony and he and his brethren were surrounded in a blinding flash.

As others watched in terror the light faded, showing nothing but piles of ash upon the dust-covered ground where the sorcerers once stood.

Heartened by the defeat of the opposing sorcerers, Aginyon's host charged the Immortals. The armies clashed, and men were killed on both sides. Aginyon was consumed with his vow of vengeance, and Justice cut a path through the enemy host like a scythe through a field. Men charged him and were slaughtered as they came. One vision burned in his mind - a black tent on a hill facing the countryside, the tent of Argile. Men fled from the man that had become death as he charged up the hill to meet his arch enemy. Suddenly he was Beset on all sides by Argile's personal bodyguard, and Aginyon called a Holy Word to smite them to the earth. Argile saw his Immortals cut to pieces by the host of Aginyon and realized his end was near. When Argile beheld Aginyon, covered head to toe in blood, and saw the promise of death in his eyes, he threw down his sword and begged for mercy. Aginyon saw the pitiful wretch, groveling on the ground before him, and was filled with pity. Suddenly Argile become a blur of motion as he drew a dagger to throw. With one swift stroke, Aginyon buried Justice to the hilt in Argile's chest. As his soul was pulled to the underworld, Argile cursed Aginyon with his last breath. "You will rule for a time, but you shall bear no sons, and shall never marry again. When you pass from this world, all that you have made shall pass with you". Argile died, and Tyroth rejoiced.

And so Aginyon was named High King, and he united Tyroth into one glorious nation. The world prospered and flourished under his rule and it was known as a time of peace and prosperity. But Argile's prophesy haunted Aginyon, and as the time of his passing drew near, he realized the truth of it.

The Church of Light sought to place one of its bishops in power to continue to spread God's glory. Aginyon's generals believed that only military strength could keep Tyroth United. Aginyon's brothers, and their sons and daughters argued that only the blood of royalty should rule, and all the while the Tower of the Sightless Eye placed its own people in high places in preparation for the coming of the new age, or maybe it was an age past. An age steeped in the blood of men...



And so you find yourself amidst this age...this, Dark Age.





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