The Second Age: "Age of Horrors"

Rebuilding the World

After the Great Rebellion, the universe was left without the direct guidance of the Elder Races, save for a few dragons and benevolent fey. The Younger Races struggled to rebuild their lives after the great destruction caused by the war. On one particular world, events would occur that would shape the universe itself.

That world was Celesia, one of the first worlds created by the gods and to develop life. It was the perfect world, brimming with magic. It was considered as the prized jewel of creation by the Creator Gods.

At that time, the world was still completely wild and untamed. It was dominated by great reptilian beasts, but many of the Younger Races managed to thrive at the same time. Two races eventually rose to dominance: the reptilian Sserassin, and the insectile Tharaxin.

The Sserassin were extremly intelligent serpentfolk. They were quick to master magic, and created powerful empires on one side of the continent. They believed themselves to be the true masters of the world, and subjugated the other races. They used their magic to create great wonders, and created new races to serve them.

The Tharaxin were large beings that resembled a mix of beetle and spider. They were also extremely intelligent, and had vast psionic powers. They too created empires of their own on the other side of the continent. Extremely xenophobic, they saw other races as nothing more than food. They too created great works of wonder, and establish a massive network of cities deep in the earth.

At that time, Celesia had only one massive landmass. For over ten thousand years these two races were masters of the world. They advanced knowledge by leaps and bounds, but they were cruel and selfish. And when the two met one another, they immediately warred against each another in a bid to exterminate the other.

They warred for over a thousand years. They called upon great magicks and untold psychic powers, and ripped the landmass into pieces. However, they gradually wore each other down, and the other races saw their opportunity to revolt and fight back against their cruel overlords.

Facing their destruction, both the Sserassin and the Tharaxin delved deeper into forbidden metaphysical territory for more power. They reached out beyond this reality into the Entropic Void to draw upon its power, and caught the attention of the Elder Horrors.

The Elder Horrors were ancient beings without identity. They came from the Entropic Void, an ancient plane of existence that is and is not, that exists in between the cracks of the multiverse, whose entire concept and structure is so alien that to be simply in contact with it or its inhabitants is enough to drive one completely insane.

The Elder Horrors thought that this young, but potent, universe would far more easy to consume than any other they had before, but the Creator Gods had learned much from the destruction of their former home. They had fashioned the universe in such a way that it was incredibly difficult for the Elder Horrors to manifest themselves fully. Even when they manage to emerge, the Veil of the Universe prevented them from using their full power, allowing them only a minute connection to the Entropic Void to draw strength. Still, they remained mighty and powerful, and their numbers made them out to be a major threat to the continued existence of the reality the gods had come to consider home. Another war, the War of Horrors, would consume the universe once more.

In order to effectively combat the gods on the Outer Planes, most of the contingent of Elder Horrors that came through were tasked to be concerned with only the gods. The weaker ones, who were few, would concern themselves with the mortal plane itself. However, the Younger Races would prove to be more resilient and dangerous than the Great Enemy expected, due to the limitations on their power.

Although they were weaker, the Elder Horror Broodlings still possessed their vast knowledge. They created a host of unnatural beings to act as their servants and army. These aberrations of the natural order were called the Horror Spawn, and set out to conquer the world in the name of their malevolent masters.

The War of Horrors

Throughout the universe, war raged. The Divine Pantheon fought with desperation against the Elder Horrors. The Younger Races fought the Spawn. They fought valiantly for over twenty thousand years, either in all-out battle, or behind the scenes through subterfuge, yet it was all in vain. The Elder Horrors and their servants prove to be too much. Many of the gods were killed, or scattered into the vastness of the multiverse, and their children were enslaved by the Spawn, doomed to serve the base designs of their wicked masters, or just exist as cattle for their hunger and pleasure.

This would last for another ten millenia, and the Spawn enjoyed themselves by taking their turn to be masters over the enslaved peoples of the universe. On Celesia, where the Horrors were first summoned, the Tharaxin and Sserassin empires were destroyed, and their people willing gave themselves over to the service of the Horrors in exchange for their lives. Together, the Horrors and their servants used the conquered races to fulfill their depraved desires, conducted twisted experiments on them, used them for vile rituals, or simply consume them as food. The light was dim, and life withered. Yet there was still a glimmer of hope.

The Creator Gods, exiled into the vast multiverse, were not idle. On their own, they explored the boundless unexplored regions for anything that could help them fight the Elder Horrors.

Zhao-Kahn, already tainted by his battles with the Horrors, struck foul deals with the Devils, and turned to the fires of darkness to fuel his power and strength beyond imagination. The Devils initially thought that they had gained another servant, but Zhao-Kahn proved to be too smart and too powerful for them. Instead of being the servant, he became the master of many Fallen Ones, creating a vast army for himself.

Illia researched all that she could, expanding her knowledge and capacity of magic, and gaining much wisdom. She became so powerful that she became magic itself, filled with raw power.

Kaï-den took another approach. Instead of traveling, he went into a deep meditative state, and explored his own soul, attaining a higher level of enlightenment that would shed light into the darkness of the Horrors.

Little by little, the Creator Gods sent messages of hope to their children, through dreams and visions. At this point, the Spawn Overlords had grown arrogant and lax in their vigilance. When their masters grew bored with Celesia and turned their attention elsewhere, the Younger Races staged a rebellion against them.

Three races led all others of Celesia against the Horror Spawn: the versatile Hynar, the stout Agharendarr, and the fair Fey’Anthyr. This union would be known as the Great Alliance. The Fey’Anthyr provided lore and knowledge and the might of their magical arts, while the Agharendarr used their forging skills to arm the rebels. However, it was the Hynar that rallied the other races into a unified alliance, and led them into battle by supplying the greatest number of soldiers. Great leaders rose up, guided by the visions of the gods.

The uprising lasted an entire millenia, and was fought all over the world. Despite the Horrors' lax vigilance, they were still powerful, and the Celesians fought with great difficulty.

A break in favor of the rebels came when the Alliance managed to pierce the veil that the Elder Horrors had placed over Celesia, and recalled their gods. The Celesian Pantheon did just so, with retributive fury thrown with full force against the Great Enemy. The gods, during their exile, had learned how to empower themselves and their children to a higher degree, but it would come with a price. In order to do so, they would bind their existence to the faith of their children. As long as their children would believe and worship them, they would exist. The more who worship, the more powerful that god would become. However, should their all their worshippers die, and no one would be left to remember them, the gods would fade away into nothingness.

With this new binding, the Celesians and their gods broke the back of the Horrors' rule of their reality. Once the Spawn were cast down, the Great Alliance set out to destroy them all and their works in order to remove the taint they had infected their world. Meanwhile, the gods set out to destroy or seal away those Elder Horror Broodlings that remained. Once done, they crafted a great dweomer, the Veil, to prevent anymore incursions from the Entropic Void, and to shield the existence of the Celesian universe from their eyes. In doing so, they sacrificed much of their power, reducing their sphere of power from once encompassing the entire universe, to only the world of their first children, Celesia. Their existence and power were now link the faith of their children.

After several dozens of millenia with the ridding of the Elder Horrors, the Second Age, the Age of Horrors, came to a close.

Preceeded by:
Age of Titans

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Succeeded by:
Age of Starlight

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