Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Lands of Light: Across the River

The fall of the Holy Empire in the Lands of Night had been astonishingly quick--a matter of Imperial governors and soldiers either fleeing to the other side of the  or being killed by their former subjects if they dared to stay.  A handful set up petty kingdoms that managed to persist for little while--the longest was one Argilius who ruled a section of the Fangs for an astonishing twenty years--but these did not last.  (Even Argilius was finally killed by his own men after managing to unite the Kings of the Stone and Ironfangs against him.)  Within a handful years, it was if the Lightland rule over the Lands of Night had never been.

Except of course, not really.  Speakers of the Dark Tongue had grown rare, few and sundered, the one thing that had truly united the Lands of Night now all but dead, with a dozen strange dialects in its place.  It was the Imperial tongue that the Nightfolk would speak now, and the Imperial names for their lands they would adopt. And their language was not the only thing dead.  In the north of the Plains and the whole of the Marsh what nobility that had existed was now dead.  For the Plains, that gave the Cthoniques a base of power that they would spread over unhindered, and use to gradually dominate the magnates of the south, the Kizeks, and in time, the remnant of the Southern Kingdoms in the Blasted Heath--for the Marsh, it left them entirely dependent on the Badb.  The rest of the Lands of Night had also been changed, often in subtle ways--though sometimes blatantly.

Further, just like their Milesian counterparts, the Nightfolk fell to fighting amongst themselves, the alliance that had formed to defeat the Emperor swiftly collapsing.  The Maganzas swiftly pursued a feud with the Cthoniques that would last on and off for centuries--the Ashuranas began to war on the Nibelung--and the Regnis and Utgardis had hated each other for a long time before the Empire invaded.  The world became smaller and more local for most who lived in it.

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