The 1247 GUE is the year that the Great Diffusion occurred through the Great Underground Empire. It have been an attempt to put an end to evil magic in the land. All most notable wizards, holy men, and clerics of the time gathered to design a plan for the extinction of evil once and for all. All doers had to be eliminated; powerful magic items had to be dismantled or destroyed; and existing magic had to be diluted and made useless, even the Underground Empire also had to be sealed off.
But evil magic didn't just
wait to see it's own distruction. Deep in the ground, the tiny specks of evil dust began
to shift and move. Slowly, the particles pushed and etched their way through the soil and
formed veins--much like gold veins.
And the particles had a special quality, too. When they pushed their way into certain rock formations, they produced light! The impact of this new geological formation was not felt above ground in the valley, but underground. Throughout the hallways and mazes of the old, forgotten Empire, the effect was monumental.
At the same time, another
miracle was happening; a particularly dense cluster of particles had developed some
unusual characteristics and started to behave like a magnet, drawing more particles and
absorbing the energy from them. The cluster grew... pulsated. It began to emit strange
sounds and energies.
This strange cluster was discovered first by the Dwarves. The Dwarves were the best (and only) miners in the land. Their tunnels and tracks catacombed the mountains in the Northeast. From these mines, they extracted minerals needed for metals, as well as silver and gold. There seemed to be no geological sense to the wealth found in the mountains, but the Dwarves did not care to question it. They mined the luminous substance, too, naming the material Illumynite. The usefulness of the Illumynite was not immediately known, but quantities of it were still mined and stored for research.
With this material a new Underground Empire begun to be raised. And parts of the older cities begun to be relocated, transported magically to the new underworld. Illumynite lighted this new world and the transported people did not seem to mind. Eventually, all but a few buildings in West Shanbar were drawn into the new environment.
One of the many changes in
the Empire involved the Valley
of the Vultures, once called
the Valley of the Sparrows. Needless to say, the sparrows have been replaced
by vultures and people begun to disappear misteriously.
These vultures were also the eyes and ears for the evil force. Able to zero in on subjects who spoke or acted against the force, they would swoop down and carry the offender away, never to be seen again.
When the Wizard and Rooper
caught on to enough of the evil process, they set out to destroy it before it reached an
unstoppable point. It didn't take long for the Force to respond to the presence of the two
snooping humans. The Wizard was the first to be turned to stone, having
stumbled upon far too much information.
This disappearance of Trembyle caused Rooper great concern, and reacting in typical adventurer spirit, he donned his battle gear and prepared to find and defeat whoever or whatever was responsible.Prior to the earnest beginning of the investigations and the disappearances, Rooper had prepared a help message disguised as a public-relations package to be sent to everyone in the Westlands on his mailing list. This package contained a notification that the bearer had just won the grand prize of the Dizzy World Resort sweepstakes, a map to Shanbar in the Eastlands, and a gift Tele-Orb as a bonus. All the bearer needed to do to claim the prize was to journey--at his own expense--to West Shanbar and hear a presentation by Rooper and Trembyle.
One of those winners is you...