The History of Undine
Compiled by Cliona in Dark Ages
Before Deoch: 100
The monk scrubbed a hand over his face, realizing not for the first time that lines of age were beginning to soften his once-severe features. He sighed softly and gazed out the window of his Rucesion home, the final destination of the forty-year journey of his life. Dawn crept up over the ocean waters of the East, a foul mist lifting from the distant Castle Dubhaim. His wife slept still behind him, unaware in sleep of her husband lighting a candle to rival the red sun. The monk sighed and lifted a quill, dipping it in the expensive inks of Loures, a monk's only indulgence.
It has taken me many moons to piece together the scraps of Undine's past into a coherent picture. I was born there to young, idealistic monk parents, and by discovering the history of this town, I have also come to know my own history.
Danaan 2986: Third Emperor: Loures conquers Undine
Danaan 2991: The first Monk appears in Undine. Silent Rebellion of Undine
This was during the battles of the Shadow's War, in the Tenth Aeon of Temuair. Undine had just been claimed by the third Emperor of Loures and, with this new plague, remained a thorn in the side of the Royal Court. Imperial spies within the town said that the mundanes and shopkeepers there were beginning to voice their discontent with this new system of government. Already, the Lord who signed the pact agreeing to remain under the King's power had been overthrown, cast out to the mountains surrounding Undine, the easternmost reaches of the Mountains Kasmanium.
As a precautionary measure, every weapon in every home was captured and melted down. All the warriors were stripped of their weapons and armor; every rogue lost their secrets and traps to the metal shortage. The priests lost their warriors; the wizards lost their priests. A great exodus began from Undine as all those with the knowledge of Hy-Brasyl moved on to other towns, with great regret, for they could no longer live in their town and practice their craft.
The shopkeepers grew angry over this development, their business gone, and their stone shops falling into disrepair. The faithful followers with the knowledge of Hy-Brasyl returned upon learning of the fate of their town, angry with the treatment they had received at the hands of those who were supposed to be protecting them. The warriors no longer mourned the loss of their weapons. The rogues gave up their trickery for they had seen the value in working for one other than themselves. The wizards learned new skills, their undervalued strengths growing with use. The priests shared their love and trained their young bodies, swimming and growing nimble in Undine's lakes of stone.
All the followers of Hy-Brasyl shared their gifts, growing strong and wise, sly and enchanting. What little metal the citizens could gather was melted into bracers of iron, protecting strong, slim wrists from the blows of enemies and demons as they sparred. They prayed piously with their priestly hearts, giving up their wealth for strength, seeking Cail, for he, too, was denied his weapons and given his strength. That became the story of Undine. A village so small yet so powerful, so feared by such a strong power as the court of Loures that they, like Cail, had their weapons taken away.
Monks were born. Swift of body and mind, honest and pious, humble and meek. Wielding a little bit of every calling, they were able to own a little bit of every calling, weak, but with the pure knowledge of Hy-Brasyl concentrated within them, giving them the edge over all other paths for they, unlike them, were unable to pool their knowledge for a single goal.
Their quiet rebellion began with the knowledge that together, at numbers of nearly seven score, they could lead a fair-sized rebellion against the throne. Word of Undine's might spread quickly and the Court of Loures was at a loss. What could be done to tamp down on this rebelliousness? Their weapons had been taken away, their wills broken as they sought new homes elsewhere. What could be done to stop them? The fists and feet, which were their greatest strength, could not be taken from them. Their magic was not grand enough to permit a call to halt, for their magic was not even as grand as that practiced by the members of the Court themselves.
Danaan 3031: Fourth Emperor: Ealagad
Danaan 3058: Shadows War
"Those united under Ealagad suffered defeat in the form of plagues of madness..."
Before the empress could come to a decision regarding the small group of rebels, the Steel Swan, Ealagad, came to power. The rebellion of Undine came to its highest point, tension swirling around every fireside chat, every evening in the tavern grew to an explosion as the young and eager challenged their elders, calling for battle while the elders claimed the time had not yet come, that their numbers must grow further.
Word came in a rush as an exhausted rider from Suomi ventured to Undine, the first such visitor since the strain on the citizens reached its boiling point. As the young man's horse fell dead upon the ground, he cried out that the gods of Aosda were fighting the dubhaimid, and that all townspeople united under the Steel Swan were falling to hideous plagues of madness. Piet was wiped out and next to come would be the magicians of Rucesion. Children of Suomi lay in convulsive throes the likes of which no one had seen since the times of Madness.
The monks of Undine steeled themselves for revolution, unwilling to be subjected to these illnesses simply because they had been captured against their will so very long ago. Even the elders agreed that they could no longer sit and wait for more monks to be born and trained, but that they must act now upon the moment, seizing this opportunity. It was then, as they stood poised on the verge of realizing their long ago dreams, that the first monks began to fall ill. With no warning, the monks lay bedridden, their heads pounding with pain and their bodies twisting, aching, and a desperate effort to relieve the pressure on their fragile spines. The monk-priests tired desperately to remember their craft, but the art was long forgotten, and their poultices and weak magic were no match for this true force of Darkness. Monks began to die. They sailed away from Undine to the untouched lands of Mileth and Abel.
I was born during this great plague of Undine, this time of horrible suffering throughout the villages, with children dying daily in squalor long after their parents succumbed. My parents, thinking only for my own safety, bundled us off to the shipyards where we boarded a great sailing vessel for Abel.
One of the victims of this plague was aboard this ship, their silent malignancy growing to eventually claim the life of every man, woman, and child on that vessel. Except me.
As was the custom in those days, these "ghost ships", filled with the dead and their toxic black blood were, by order of the King, to be removed from the seas, cleaned, and returned to service by mundanes under the Imperial Navy. One of the men chosen by the King to do this was the man I later came to know as my father, a shepherd living on the outskirts of Mileth. As he was a strong young man with a wife and family to sustain him, it was believed the gods had enough favor with him to spare him the suffering of the plague, which had begun claiming the lives of the shipbuilders and crew members on their way back to Undine. It was thought that the water itself was carrying a poison no priestess could purge.
Danaan 3148: Discovery of the sixth element: Light
Danaan 3171: End of the Shadows War
Danaan 3177: Lamps appear in towns
This was the case of my parents. As I grew into a strong young man, the first monk to be trained outside of my land of Undine, I watched in Rucesion as Light was discovered, I watched the Shadows War end and lamps spring up throughout Temuair. I watched this, pleased by the turn of history had taken.