A Year & A Day
So swung the pendulum…
In the time of the terrible tyrant lich, Emperor Malzegar, the world knew despair unlike ever before. Undead sprang in multitudes, demons marched by the thousands, all manner of darkness and death ravaged the living. Until the inquisitors of the New Day gathered their forces and vanquished the great evil. The inquisition continued in the wake of his defeat, lead by the Grand Inquisitor Pellaxtria Valhurst, whose reign was long, prosperous, and equally tyrannical. She swept the globe of arcane magic, casters and spells alike, in fear another necromancer would arise, more terrible than Malzegar; any association with non-divine magic wrought swift condemnation, and soon, all association with any other god was considered heresy. This lasted some centuries, leadership passing from mother to child to grandchild.
The Order of the First Law built the resistance against the complacent and corrupted Inquisition, an Anti-Crusade to protect the anti-theist society which rose under the blinding radiance of zealotry. Decades of arcane erasure left the world impudent and dependent on divine magic, but the single deity whose power was drained by false piety weakened divine magic across the globe. At the end of a drawn-out war, the sky filled with the whole of all pantheons – evil and good, lawful and chaotic – each fled to the southern pole with an earthshaking tumult and a rescinding shoreline. Coastal cities were all but decimated, and several miles inland flooded as a great chunk of ocean floor rose from the Antarkos, settling in low-orbit.
Babylon, the Garden Hanging off the End of the World, remains a mystery 400 years since that fateful day. Waterfalls cascade from its continental rim to a yawning abyss miles below, immense cables of adamantium keep it tethered to the planet, and the gods hold fast to their silence.
Arcane magic, far from the powerful force it once was, returns under the strict regulation of the Order of the First Law. Divine magic is tantamount to heresy, if it is believed to exist at all, with only the ancient whispers of druids and shamans, long since disappeared into the wilds primeval centuries ago. Rumors spread of secret cabals practicing higher arcane magic, beyond the First Law set down to protect mortals from intervening outsiders, and darker still are the hushed horrors of unspeakable churches lingering on the edge of sanity.
The Guild as a job for you, adventurer. Succeed for glory and riches, fail… well… there’s always the next candidate…