Age of Ascension
Timeline of the Empire
The following timeline represents common knowledge for all inhabitants of Western Egias, or what could be learned by spending a day in study Valcora’s Grand Library. The validity of the information is difficult to ascertain, and scholars of the Empire are constantly making discoveries and proposing changes to these accepted historical facts. It is the dream of most adventurers to precipitate their own entries into world history; either by their deeds in the present or discoveries of the past.
The Avencian calendar is based on the Genovan calendar, which was considered to be the world’s most advanced and astronomically accurate. Thusly, the first recorded historical event, by Valcoran reckoning, took place in 1366. Avencian historians have separated the timeline into distinct ages since then. The time before the Age of Mortals is referred to as the Lost Age. Existing only in theory, all time before year 0 is referred to as the Age of Dreams.
The Age of Mortals (1366-2139)
1366: From the ashes of the ruined kingdom of Irindas, a great leader called Ethas unites the land and claims much around modern-day Valcora. The Free City of Cardea is established.
1380: Plague sweeps the population of the young kingdom. It’s victims return from death to stalk the living.
1390: The plague has subsided. Cardea swells with refugees and makes alliances, expanding its borders.
1410: The First King withdrew at the age of 84, sealing himself away with his most trusted advisors to spend his final years in piety.
1450: The Harrowing devastates Cardea, and all lands East of the mountain plunge deep into the sea. Tens of thousands are killed. The High Elves of Malledesselar, render aid, making contact with humans for the first time.
1490 : Gifted by the Elves with magical knowledge and technology, Cardea has fully recovered from what is dubbed the Harrowing. Cardea forms a strong alliance with the Elves.
1650: For reasons unknown, war breaks out between Malledesselar and Cardea. Seemingly unprepared for the humans’ resolve, the Elves are forced to return to their defensible homeland, and remain there in seclusion.
2325: Civil war erupts in Cardea upon the accidental death of the rightful hereditary King. The conflict between several opposing factions spreads throughout the kingdom.
The Age of Ruin (2340-2532)
2340: A being of pure horror enters the world of the living through manipulation of powerful Avencian wizards. He is later given the name Arioch, and his arrival is considered the catalyst of the Age of Ruin. The destruction he orchestrates is the reason for a lack of specific records over the next two and a half centuries. He eventually vanishes into the underworld.
2401: Survivors begin pouring from the entrances of Dwarven halls in the Worldshatter mountains. They bring word of war in the tunnels, with beings that came from the blackest depths. They settle in the foothills, forming the first settlements of the Bronze Dwarves.
2415: The Cardean Civil War has left the kingdom a shell of its former glory. A victorious faction at last wrests a hollow victory from the hands of its rivals, and exiles them beyond the influence of Cardea… which, in the aftermath, barely extends beyond its walls. The great kingdom becomes an assortment of territories and small, independent governments. King Ivar Nesthelion is crowned in the city.
2456: The Elves of Malledesselar emerge from their ancestral homelands and disperse into the deep woods of the Emerwald. The migration’s cause remains a mystery, but accounts maintain that the forest became more and more inhospitable in the decades following,
2487: The Kingdom of Lockholte erects a mammoth wall across the peaks that frame Malledesselar, It it’s known evermore as the Black Forest.
2502: King Nesthelion is assassinated by elven radicals for the suffering of the elves at the hands of humans generations before.
2503: The brief rule of Raius Nesthelion, Ivar’s heir, ends with his death at the hands of an angry mob. His exact offenses are stricken from city record.
2529: A great famine sweeps the land due to an exceptionally poor growing season combined with a plague of vermin.
The Age of Heroes (2533-2859)
2533: The Tower of Ordulhan is founded. This center for study of the arcane is the first of its kind, and gathers the scattered descendents of mages gifted with Elven magical knowledge, saving it from becoming lost in the passage of time.
2556: The Valcor expedition is formed, a task force of adventurers from all lands, elven warriors from Emerwald, and mages from Ordulhan. Led by Mathaius Valcor of the crumbling city of Cardea, the expedition ventures into the Underworld to confront Arioch, the being released by magic in the Age of Ruin.
2559: The Valcor Expedition, thought dead, resurfaces at half strength. Bringing word of advanced and dangerous civilizations within the underworld, they separate, and spread word of their victory over Arioch. The flagging city of Cardea, after 60 years of rule by a line of stewards, welcomes Mathaius Valcor home. He is crowned the first of a new line of kings, and the city is renamed Valcora in his honor.
2581: Infighting between the temples occurred, increasing in intensity until the destruction of a Temple of Mara in the city of Valcora. The deed was carried out by disrupting the stability of a cistern in the sewers beneath the temple, and no one was ever convicted.
2716: The first Deep Dwarves emerge from the blackness of the underworld, so named for the startling transformations they have undergone in the last three centuries.
2721: After several years’ preparation, the Deep Dwarves begin their campaign to retake the largest of their stolen holds from humanoid hordes. Within two years, they recapture the ancient city of Krein.
2802: The High Elves spread into human settlements in Emerwald, bringing teachings of their culture and freely choosing human mates. It becomes known that the elven population cannot sustain itself, and is dying out. In this way, they preserve their legacy.
2810: The great red wyrm Baelestrix lays settlements to waste along the Worldshatter mountains. A final alliance between the remaining Elves and Bronze Dwarves marches against her. The dragon is defeated.
2828: A great many halflings gathered and migrated West, across the Worldshatter mountains. News in the coming years of the founding of a halfling nation was met with laughter.
The Age of Ascension (2860-Present)
2860: The first Chapel of Aeon is constructed in Valcora, amidst social turmoil. The New Faith quickly gains in power within the stagnant city.
2918: Valcora’s Aeonic Chapel is reconstructed and greatly expanded into a grand Cathedral, with capital donated over a short period by Valcora’s wealthiest citizens.
2939: A rebellion of the lower class took place, leading to rioting and injuries. A number of new guilds and unions form in the aftermath, strengthening the position of the Valcoran worker.
2944: Genova, City of Wonders across the sea, is razed by a disastrous fire. Caused by battle between city guardsmen and the notoriously ruthless Dread Cross pirate fleet, the fire reaches an alchemical laboratory, and eventually destroys everything. A cultural center of the world’s ingenuity, the loss is devastating. The fractured population of Valcora reunites in shock and mourning, as well as an influx of former Genovans.
2954: The sails of the Dread Cross break Valcora’s horizon, but are forced to turn about to meet their pursuers; the bulk of the Atheronian navy. A fierce battle ensues, sending countless wrecks to the deeply submerged Mortal Age ruins around Valcora.
2960: Many Genovan survivors have relocated to Valcora, including several noted artists and inventors. Huge numbers of Atheronian soldiers settle temporarily in Valcora, the fleet having lost so many ships that they are unable to get everyone home. The revitalization of Valcora through the influx of artisans and soldiers spurs cultural revolution, and Valcora begins to expand westward.
2988: The fortified town of Ironoak is founded at a key point along the Firewine river, facilitating further expansion and annexation.
2999: The Battle of Fourswords is fought, in which four heroes of the empire stood against the ogre king and his army in the foothills of Fourswords, to the defeat of the ogres. Declaring itself the Avencian Empire, Valcora lays undisputed claim to the Heartlands.
3013: Increasingly common demonic insurgence within Valcora leads to the formation of the Enclave, a group tasked with rooting out and destroying all demonic taint.
3025: The Enclave, The Magisters, and the Church of Aeon mutually condemn the practice of arcane magic within the city for its close association with planar events. Many institutions are disbanded.
3040: The Tower of Ordulahn is the last to fall, besieged by an unforgiving mob after a particularly nasty incident involving the arrest of a demonologist wizard. the Tower is deserted, and accordances are signed into law condemning arcane magic throughout the Empire. The church and government elevate the importance of engineering and technology in the eyes of the people, stimulating growth on these fronts to compensate for the loss of magical aid in performing difficult tasks.
3047: The Emperor is reported gravely ill, and a Magister is appointed as regent for the year. Assassinations and conspiracy theories abound as armies remain rooted in their nearest settlements, placing great strain on food supplies in the Heartlands.
3058: The young empire brings the last settlements of the Lowlands under its control.
3062: The Empire Clocktower is constructed in Valcora’s trade district. Considered one of the wonders of the modern world, the tower covers a quarter of a city block and looms high above the surrounding buildings. It is a joint effort between Valcoran financial support, engineers throughout Avencia, and the Dwarves of Eastiron.
3063: A powerful undead being rose from the catacombs beneath the town of Emberhill and began a solitary journey toward Ironoak, the bones of dead things rising to follow in his wake. The creature was met just outside the walls by the Knights of the Griffon, local adventurers, and five inquisitors of the Enclave, and put down.
3065: Seven Magisters and two members of the Merchant’s Accord are assassinated along with members of their households. The investigation that followed lead to the discovery of a cabal of shapeshifters formerly employed by the Valcoran government as infiltrators, who are dubbed the Unseen. The group fades away and hasn’t been heard from since.
3069: There was a treacherous sabotage of the Exultant, a ship carrying a number of ambassadors departing for and returning to the East. Diplomatic relations soured for several years.
3072: A gold rush revitalizes the town of Limecrag, reinforcing ailing Avencian presence in County Cromwell.
3073: The Blacksky Disaster occurs when the Watch accidentally discovers a hidden arcane sanctum in the course of an attempted arrest. Fires devastate the Cliff Ward, and a powerful explosion kills over 100 people, leaving the crater now known as the Silk Street Ruins.
3075: The first official treaty between the hill people of the Gotsmarch, the Empire, and the Dwarves of Krein is signed.
3077: The first Valcoran warships are fitted with cannon and naval falconets imported from Ospria at incredible expense.
3078: A mind-altering plague befalls the city, carried from Crux by passengers on a ship from the East. The Docks are quarantined for several weeks, but to no avail. The plague runs its course two months later.
3084: Banditry on Heartlands roads rose sharply, but then suddenly ceased entirely.
3086: A dispute in the Old Market ends gruesomely when a living statue of iron charges from an alley and wreaks havoc on those involved and all nearby, slaying 11.
3091: A healer in Ironoak discovers a cure for Blackblood, a rare but well-known birth defect manifesting in Valcoran children for several decades. The disease twists bodies and minds.
3095: The first and only visit from a lizardman High Oracle occurs without warning, and the venerable leader is accompanied by over a hundred armed Keshite lizardmen warriors. Stunned and fearful onlookers cleared the streets as the procession moved steadily into Carre Dova to meet with the Emperor himself.
3102: The skeleton of a great aquatic beast is discovered in a recently unsealed sea cave in the Coins. the creature remains unidentified.
3107: Wildfires ravage Notchwood for weeks. At the same time, an Aeonic extremist storms the keep of Broadwood with a retinue of faithful followers, claiming that the Count is a demon in disguise. The attempt fails.
3115: The current year.