(Collab with Publius, whose hard work I shamelessly butchered.)
The spectre of night had long plunged the dawn far beneath the horizon, and the tumbling seas were shrouded in thick mists. The blinded Justinian captain came onto the deck of his ship, named The Watchman. His was accompanied by another ship and a smaller boat, tasked with navigating the eastern seas ahead for any sign of hostile elements, before the Justinian fleet of the Domain would enter the Gulf of Ouroborasia in full force. The sky and sea turned from the calm sunlit cerulean to sombre grey, sailing for the shores of night. Torch-lit, the vessel glided gently on the haunted waters; a vanguard of a small candle through the vast dark.
Clad in the ocean’s mists, hostile shadows are closing in on the crew. Dark motions. A boy-sailor alerts the Captain, Therus Faldrow -- a wizened grey man a couple scores of seasons past his day. Unknown vessels are upon them, their masts and heathen Red Pantheonist banners, though barely visible, wave in the eastern wind as omens for death. Therus gives the signal to retreat. And so his ship, named the Guardian, abruptly manouvres about to set course for the opposite direction again, and warn the main force. The Scout ship follows. What remains is a single vessel of Magna Excelsiorum, the smallest of the three, the Watchman, to buy the others time to get away and stand against the impending attack. Its captain understands he is tasked with a heavy burden. The unknown Red Pantheon fleet come ever nearer, and the Watchman manoeuvres sideways and prepares its sole cannon; all the while the captain prays that the Guardian will make it to safety, and their own sacrifice not be in vain. Though the captain also knows he needn’t worry, for the Guardian is a battle hardened ship and the agent of many a good ship's doom. Meanwhile the Second Mate of the Watchman, a human woman, pointed a blunderbuss at the rows of silhouettes from the strange people awaiting her on the opposite deck, now only meters away from the bow of their ship. But ominously still silent as the grave, and the mist between them is so thick that it cannot even be said whether she is facing Humans. She fires with her blunderbuss, and the intense bright spark therefrom lifts the fog, if only for a second. A scream is heard, and it sounded human. At the very least, she now understands that what they’re up against are not the alien creatures the southern oceans are notorious for. Yet all the same, her effort to stave the enemy off is vain – their lone vessel is hopelessly outmatched. And having opened fire at them already, the Justinians can expect no quarter.
Then came their response.
A hellish blaring of castanets and the beating of drums rings through the dark fog and through the eardrums of each man and woman in vicinity. The Red Pantheonists came on steadily with a vicious clamouring of masculine roars and jeers towards the three Northern ships, rowing fast. The sound of beating drums and the braying of zornas spread across the nearby water as the first corsair ship cast hooks attached to rope at the scouting vessel, while untold numbers of other corsairs closed in. It was impossible to make out just how many of them there were, but as they were all chanting and screaming it sounded like a great many hundred bloodthirsty men, making noises as feral beasts to invoke the demon of war. Perhaps they were thousands. As the clamouring and encroachment went on, they were blasting holes through the hull of the Watchman with their cannons, and water from the salty brine poured in through the holes. ‘’Don’t waste your powder. Go and warn the others before they take the ship!’’ The captain cried at her frantically. The Second mate looks to him and she soon agrees. The signal is lit, though it is far away enough that the bulk of the Northern Justinian fleet might not even perceive it in the ocean’s dark and misty veil. There is only the hope that the other two scouting ships will make it back safely.
Then a voice is heard in a language the northern Justinians did not understand. A cloaked man of swarthy complexion with a strange symbol on his garments, and armed with a curved blade, a pistol and clad in black lamellar mail, had boarded the ship. He looked at the Second Mate with a fickle glare, blood visible between the bleeding gums of his bare and grinding teeth. He was, without a doubt, one of the Axohar from Uudhin. ‘’Yield. Or. Kill you.’’ The Axohar man spoke to the northern Justinian crew in Sancthiyin, with a very thick accent. The boat was already sinking as more Uudhinites entered the deck to seize the northern sailors and any possible loot stashed away. Meanwhile the other corsair vessels were hot on pursuit of the two ships that had evaded capture, where they are led to an uncertain fate. Artros the boy sailor, an elven migrant and ship's cleric, stashed and hid his Canonica in his satchel. With bowed heads, he and his comrades were dragged onto the Uudhinite flagship.
The following morning
The mist had partially cleared away, and the sun’s dimmed light graces the Edukeshan waters through the grey and sombre clouds. The Northerners from the scouting boat captured in yesterday’s skirmish, were tied up and gagged – sealed below deck with no clue as to where the Axohar will be taking them. Above deck, captain Yaldbaw of Daveithai stands atop the bow of the Uudhinite flagship as he narrows his eyes firmly at the western horizon. An island had appeared, and his lips curve once more into a vicious grin. ‘’The Island of Arban. These infidels have no right to the Islands of Edukesh.’’
The Uudhinite fleet navigates its course to remain out of sight of the watchtower flanked on Arban’s eastern coast, lest the fog is completely gone, for making use of it was essential to their strategy. At the south of Arban, the Uudhinites were well aware the area is barely populated, if at all, and an organized assault would cause any of the remaining Ouroborasian garrisons to succumb. Or so they thought. Four lone carracks split off from the massive corsair fleet, heading south to take roughly 300 Uudhinites to the southcoast, while the other roughly eighty ships circumnavigates around the island towards the western coast armoured in fog, from whence the Ouroborasians would expect the relieving force from Magna Excelsiorum.
After several hours, a flare was seen coming from the island. The corsairs from the four carracks had seized one of the towers from overland, and lit the beacon. Through intel they gleaned from Axohar locals that had lived on that island since the time of Axohaan’s Second Rebellion, the Uudhinites learned how to communicate the arrival of allied ships to the Ouroborasian garrison. They would believe, falsely, that the fleet of Uudhin is the one from Magna Excelsiorum. Now Yaldbaw knew the time had come to move in the remainder of the fleet. The corsairs lowered the sigils of the Salt Prince and hoisted up those they had captured in raids against the Justinians, now with the Watchman in addition. The banner of Magna Excelsiorum was depicted on the Flagship. So far, everything is going according to plan.
The fleet rowed towards the north-eastern beaches towards a castle positioned there. The fog had mostly dispersed by then, and the ship’s Justinian banners flew proudly in the wind for the castle garrison and Arban’s other inhabitants to see.
Meanwhile on the Ouroborasian mainland’s coast, the fishing village of Bajarë
‘’The Northerners... are far away foreigners in a strange and distant land. Our peoples might both be Justinians now, but they know nothing of us, our customs or our history. They have no knowledge of just what they are up against.. They have never seen them. The Demons of the Deep – the Ghouls of the Salt Prince.’’ An old fisherman spoke, smoking a pipe as he cast a gaze outside through his bushy eyebrows, and through the window of his old shack out over the sea. Pitch black clouds were drawing towards the land from the horizon, and the wildlife has migrated deeper inland. As the wind was setting up, dogs were barking anxiously at the cloud and the waters. Beyond that, it was eerily quiet. It is as though the seagulls had sensed the impending catastrophe and completely dispersed. ‘’Delin, tell the other children to get to the lighthouse on the hill...’’ ‘’But, grandfather. How do you... Alright, grandfather’’ Delin, the young grandson, rushes through the ramshackle door to reach his friends frolicking at the beach, where they gaze with wonderment towards the distant skies, and what is already happening there. One of them speaks with enthusiasm, oblivious to the supposed dread that is about to befall their home. ‘’Da says that an evil phantom known as the Prince of Salt lives over the horizon there! The dark clouds appear because he is belching the seawater. And that he has an army of horned octopuses that eat sailors and drag kids into the waters... Prolly why every fisher here’s forbidden from drifting further from shore than about a mile, huh?‘’ ‘’Horned octopuses? I want to see one!’’ A young village girl speaks up with a cheer. ‘’My uncle once reeled in a HUGE fish! But it wasn’t really a fish.. More like some.. monster-creature? It was covered in spikes and had at least 5 eyeballs and fins growing on places there shouldn’t be any... It was pretty freaky. But also pretty awesome.’’ ‘’Bah. T’is all stupid lies I tell ya! Just tales to keep us kids away from the beaches.’’ A boy says.
‘’Guys! Guys!’’ Delin catches up to the quarrelling children. ‘’My grandpa says we need to get off the beaches! It’s not safe out here!’’ A boy replies. ‘’What are you talking about? -- the seas are mostly cleared of vessels! No corsairs or other of them pirates will raid us when the weather’s THIS bad! They’d be insane! Just look at the thunderstorm that’s brewing over there!’’ ‘’Yea, this happens at least once a month remember? We’ll definitely survive some rain, that ain’t never bothered us!’’
The black clouds drew closer. The scent and vapour of the wild salty brine entering their nostrils.
‘’That’s not what my grandfather .. I mean.. it’s not the weather or pirates we should be afraid off. This isn’t natural weather.. this is.. I think he meant to say the Salt Prince is angry that our families haven’t been bringing him sacrifices anymore. And now he’s going to flood the land, and the only place we’re safe is the Lighthouse!’’ ‘’Come on, there aren’t any windows in that damp old lighthouse. I don’t want to miss out on the action… ... Alright, alright. I’ll come.’’ Sighs the boy, ultimately caving in to what is sensible.
Inside the lighthouse, it appears the grandfather for his part had busied himself gathering and evacuating his fellow fishermen, together with all their wives and families, and most other folks that lived in their coastal community. It was cold, damp and dark inside, and certainly not meant for this number of people. Many of them huddled in corners or climbed to the small balcony on the second floor from whence they could look out over the forested hills and the ocean. The dark clouds were now directly upon them, and from above was heard the distant murmuring of slithery and baneful words. Strange new birds were flying overhead, high and far enough that none of the Ouroborasian villagers could recognise what they actually were, but strange sounds were coming from them -- some of them resembling words of actual speech that, to some of them, might’ve been faintly familiar. The lighthouse was outwardly a square-shaped stone building, sturdy built to withstand many a storm or hurricane. Above the entrance hangs a wooden ornament, depicting a sigil of sorts. At the centre of the domed roof a small tower, narrow enough that stairs wouldn’t fit in its interior and so it can only be scaled by a rusty iron ladder from the outside, from the balcony earlier mentioned. Since only one person can fit on the tower (and because the lighthouse is incredibly crowded), the children weren’t allowed upstairs lest they be seen by the birds. The grandfather watched in the tower, with a look of concern on his face. Yet not one of fear or surprise. He looked at the waves of the Edukeshan sea, who have gotten greyer. ‘’Hey! There are still some people at the beaches! Someone needs to warn them to get out of there, and fast!’’ Cried a village senior watching from the balcony. ‘’No. Don’t!’’ Responded the grandfather to the man below him. ‘’Those aren’t people.’’ ‘’Come on Gencian, you know better than to say that of others.’’ ‘’No you fool.’’ The grandfather sighed with a hoarse and monotone voice. ‘’Take a better look at their proportions.’’ ‘’By Justinian… They’re coming out of the water.’’
On the beaches were indeed crowds appearing, seemingly washed ashore and grasping onto the white sands, as they pulled more and more of their fellows onto land. And they weren’t gathering in one place, either. Looking from the top of the lighthouse Gencian saw new people appearing on the Ouroborasian shores for as far they stretched, and as far his failing eyes could still see.
The further they moved onto dry land, the more they resembled an endless array of angry and swollen, bloated people. And each new one to rise from the water is less human than the next. And just when one thinks a creature couldn’t appear more horrifying, the following one is worse. From closeby one can tell there is not a shred of conventionality to them -- creatures completely alienated from Materia’s mortal races, all resembling grotesque animals. Horrible. Ugly. Angry. And each was different; no two looked alike… When they came out of the water, they were raging and smashing and stomping around, including at each other, and hissing and gnashing and screeching. Yet strangely, they completely bypassed the homes of the local villagers and touching close to nothing of their property. Their soggy feet only sauntering through the narrow streets and alleys. At the sight of them, words as ‘’unbelievable’’, ‘’horrifying’’ and ‘’ungodly’’ were oft repeated by those humans in the lighthouse.
‘’Hey Delin, how come they aren’t coming this direction? What does your grandfather know? Who IS your grandfather, anyway?’’ ‘’I... I’m not sure I know.’’
The Ghoul Invasion of Ouroborasia
The villagers of Bajarë dared not leave the lighthouse; all they could do was wait out until the Ghouls had left. It took hours, soon a whole day. The sun went and came. The grandfather stood watch from the tower and saw it all. Even deep into the night; their unholy clamouring was heard, resounding in the cool night air. There was no end to them. Yet they came not to destroy or ransack their homes, nor did they even notice the buildings comprising their village. They did not ravage the crops, or nibble the fish hung outside to dry. They cared for none of it but rather moved straight forward, bypassing the lighthouse, further inland where they disappeared into the hills. Screams were heard in the distance. The Ouroborasian villagers were confused, and only few, such as Gencian, dared guess what is happening, or going to happen in coming days. The warriors of the Salt Prince returned to renew their ancient war in Ouroborasia. And this time; they are there to stay. In the days that follow, they would spread out quickly and suddenly across the countryside, rallying outside every city’s outter walls across the southern vicinity, where they raise the Salt Prince’s sigil on their tattered banners as a direct challenge to the Ouroborasians, and their right to inhabit these lands. It was the same sigil that hung above the entrance of the lighthouse. The creatures form ranks to something resembling armies; that now there could be no mistake as to their intent.
Capital of the Uudhinite Humans Sciroccon - 300 AWH
Kasabi Island, just off the coast of mainland Uudhin. Though similarly bleak as the Uudhinite mainland, the Island is considerably habitable and compared to wartorn Ouroborasia a safe haven for life. The place’s sharp rise to power in the past few centuries has been a cause for concern in the southern ocean, with piracy and vicious oceanic monstrosities having beset the ocean as an unholy plague. But the city itself looks unassuming – there are few impossibly high buildings, and certainly none of the splendour and décor that graces the Exaltarchy or Lamash. The most significant of the large buildings with some grandeur to them would be the Daveithai Manor, which is the family home of the Metropolitan. But the majority of the city consists of slums and new-built suburbs to house the steady growth of refugees from dispossessed Red Pantheonists of the mainland, particularly at the hands of the Justinians. And the skies above are perpetually grey and windy, locked in an overcast tempest -- the city couldn’t look any more sombre. Yet for all its soberness, this day the city is aflame with festivity and celebration, the domes of the towers are lit with brilliant fires and flowers imported from Gushawar dress the window, the lanterns and the roofs. The cause for the celebration is this; the leader of Kasabi Island, the Despot from the Daveithai family, has successfully arranged a marriage to link his bloodkin to the Ouroborasian imperial caste.
‘’Principe Synogchouta Daveithai! Congratulations on your wedding. Ouroborasian women are quite beautiful. But one from the Imperial lineage? Many patricians will envy you for sure!’’ Synogchouta replies surly to his visitor with a short: ‘’Thank you.’’ Already looking to the next guest to have gathered, in rows, to meet him. Each come from wealthy Patrician families in Uudhin’s largest (and some would say ‘sole’) great City, and Synogchouta is the host of his family Manor to receive each on behalf of his uncle... His uncle that did not have the decency to make an appearance himself. And each of the visitors come with gifts for Synogchouta to present to his bride-to-be. Chouta sits behind a long refectory table on a high upholstered and elaborate seat, with only his retainers as company. The young heir of Kasabi is slender built, dark haired and olive hued as descendants of Edukesh generally are. Their menfolk come generally with beards, long goatees and moustaches, though Chouta and his uncle are an exception to the norm as they seems to have established a lasting grudge against facial hair and thus always shave. As such Chouta normally has a youthful boyish look to his face, despite being well in his twenties. He wears a richly embellished wine-red cloak and a black tunic, and a silver bejewelled ring on each of his fingers as though he himself were royal, for Synogchouta certainly has the prim imposing attitude, and grace, of one.
Another young man about Chouta’s age came before him, a Patrician and sailor from the Miamai family, and he presented the Principe with expensive Gushawari spices. ‘’It’s sad your noble uncle couldn’t attend. The Despot Metropolitan is the one that set up this diplomatic escapade! And it bore fruit in the end, full and ripe. Just how I like my women. I’ve travelled to Ouroborasia a lot on behalf of my father, and by the Salten God, the women there have some buxom teats. The Kasabioi floozies we have? Or anywhere in Uudhin that isn’t a Ghoul-infested hellscape? Eh. They lack substance. Anyway, you lucky devil. -- this is a cause of celebration!’’ Synogchouta feigns a polite smile. ‘’Thank you for attending. … You goatfondling primate.’’ He angrily mutters as follow-up, inwardly enough that none would overhear. The Miamai man had just left, and is already replaced by a series of three women from the Ormaoth family. It is a name associated with depravity and hedonism, and their distinguished ties to Gushawar are not entirely unrelated as to why. The Principe is already bracing for yet another debauched conversation. ‘’Oh my Salt! I am so, so, so happy for you, Chouta-boy! I just love Ouroborasian lady's fashion. It’s the best in the world I say! No disrespect to Kasabi, but honestly us being linked to Azagôde only causes people to regard us as freaks and cultists or whatever.’’ The second woman speaks up. ‘’So what is the lucky lady’s name, Chouty-booty?’’ ‘’Princess Cassiopeia, and please don’t call me Chouty-booty.’’ The Principe retorts with a solemn grunt.
This would go on for the better part of the day, and the Principe grows weary and frustrated by it all. Not only because he despises these people, but because for no reason is he being married off voluntarily. Synogchouta was already engaged to another woman, someone he loved dearly, but with the death of his cousin – the Metropolitan’s son – Chouta was a year ago anointed by his uncle as Principe of Göl Kasabi. The heir. Synogchouta was never an ambitious person, and his elevation in status has only been a source for ire. Now to be married off with some Ouroborasian slut, the very people who were so recently the enemies of Göl Kasabi. Who had killed his father, and his father’s father. And now his uncle gets to call the shots and decrees he is to marry one. As if that wasn’t enough, the Ouroborasians also expect the Principe to come to Ouroborasia and pick her up too, as they themselves don’t have ships to spare for transportation across the strait of Uudhin.
Soon another guest enters the receiving hall of the Daveithai manor. A man in windswept and frayed garments laced with white fur. The Principe did not recognise him at first, but it’s Yaldbaw Daveithai, another of Synogchouta’s adventuring cousins, and from the looks of it he just arrived in Göl Kasabi from overseas to meet with his cousin. Unlike the other generally clean-shaved Daveithai, Yaldbaw dons a full and elaborate beard and stache, though understandably so to keep his face warm in the cold climates he is exposed to, down in the icy deep-south of Materia. ‘’Chouta! My own cousin the Principe! You look stronger since last time we met. Why so dour, my friend?’’ He exclaims with a voice loud and stentorian with arms outstretched. ‘’Ah, Yaldbaw. A welcome sight to see a family member. A sign of civilization, despite you being dressed up like a swashbuckling barbarian.’’ ‘’Ha-ha! Well, I have become sort of a swashbuckling barbarian in recent years, to be frank. In my station it is an inevitable change. Erimachaf holds no place for the weak... The things I’ve lived through, well, princely greenhorns as yourself couldn’t imagine. But my own heroics aside, I am not here to patronize you this time. I have a gift for you, and I think you’ll appreciate it!’’ ‘’Hrmpf. Judging by what I’ve been presented so far, I am skeptical of that.’’ ‘’Trust me -- It’s from Hypernotei.’’ And Yaldbaw presents the Principe with what appears to be a curved sword of a shotel format, nothing out of the ordinary. Chouta accepts the thing reluctantly and observes it for a moment, unamused. ‘’Remove the scabbard.’’ Yaldbaw adds. And Chouta does as instructed, and the sword reveals its metal. He now understood why his cousin spoke of the sword so reverently. Its blade is pure white and gleaming with mystifying sparkles. In matter of fact; it’s not even made of metal. Chouta places his finger on it, and immediately retracts. It’s bitingly cold to the touch. It’s ICE. ‘’Unbelievable… how is this… Is this – is this from the Kasabioi outpost our family helped finance 2 years ago? Erimachaf? I had heard rumours of progress, but were always skeptical. For what is there to find in Hypernotei beyond cursed ice, frostbite and certain death... But it seems I was proven wrong once more.’’ ‘’You are correct though. Hypernotei indeed offers those things, but there are untapped riches there that only the bold – such as myself – dare lay claim to. We call it Eternal Ice, harvested from the abominals at the edge of the world. Immeasurably rare, only few in Materia have had a blade forged of the material. You are now a proud owner of one of the few Ice Swords.’’ ‘’So what am I to do with it? Present it to the Ouroborasian dynasty? It’ll be bound to impress them I suppose. No way they’ve ever seen anything like it, even with all their newfound witchcraft.’’ ‘’You misunderstand. This isn’t a gift for the Ouroborasian royals. May the Salt Prince damn them to His deepest abyss. This is a gift I am giving to you, YOU and none other.’’ For a moment Chouta’s spirit is lifted. He looks his cousin in the eye with gratitude. ‘’Thank you, Brother Yaldbaw.’’ ‘’The pleasure is all mine. I was certain you’d like it. Now, if I may take that seat to your left.. I see it is unoccupied, and my legs have gotten stiff from the journey.’’ ‘’Don’t let me stop you.’’
For the remainder of the day, the still-melancholy heir sits quietly at the head of the table of the merry feast, passing most of his time inspecting the mystifying Ice Sword while he obliges to receive further guests. Some came all the way from Eudaz and even Yuwanist nations. Synogchouta, his retainers, family and guests are served plates of exquisite dishes imported from as far away as Lamash, and spices from Gushawar, yet none of it can lift him of his own deep shadow -- more than Yaldbaw's gift did, anyway. And when the doors to the manor finally have shut, and the Principe was certain there’d be no more guests – he was proven wrong once more.
The door flung open and an eerie chill enters the large hall. A gaunt old man in rags and a very long grey beard going down all the way to his waist, steps in. A sentry cries at him: ‘’Hold it. No beggars are welcome into these premises. Who let you through the courtyard?’’ But the guardsman soon recognizes the idol and elaborate insignia of the Salt Prince that emblazons his robe, and did not speak or act further. A group of Axohar clergy with horned masks and pitch-black robes followed him into the Manor, not uttering a single word and more-or-less doing nothing beyond look intimidating. Which is something Axohar are very good at, actually.
‘’…With unholy impatience. To vanquish the anti-cosmos and drive them anew into the crypt of creation. The shadowmoths move us about as pieces of chatrang for their own leisure -- and stratagem. To mar them one can only set course for the God of the Northern Wind.’’
Synogchouta rises up from his high seat, intrigued as he looks at the ancient man. He was about to speak up, but his crude cousin Yaldbaw spoke first. ‘’God of the Northern Wind? This is not how an Antimagi would typically refer to Axohaan. This is unbecoming of a Hierophant, even one as inane as Soghba. Finally left your ramshackle cottage, old fool?’’ Synogchouta speaks up. ‘’Quiet Yaldbaw. A Daveithai is obliged to receive his guests with hospitality, whether he likes it or not.’’ The air of festivity was smothered in a layer of darkness invoked by the mere presence of this ancient Prophet and his followers. And now everyone in the building, the hundreds of them, looked at Principe Synogchouta and Hierophant Soghba both as they converse. A deathly silence fell. The prophet spoke, his voice ringing through the stone foundations of the manor. ‘’Blood of Baltaogliac. I bestow to you my boon.’’ The man approached the table where Chouta sits, and stretches out his arm to him. In reaction the Principe reaches out to receive that which the old man clutches in his hand. ‘’What gift do you wish me to present to the Ouroborasians, Hierophant?’’ ‘’..Trail the rivers under the frozen sky. Swallow the ghost of the lucid dream… and Silent will be the mournful beast.’’ And he opens his hand. An amulet, a charm in the shape of a bell with a white gleaming crystal at the top. ‘’Harness it to resist the weary eye.’’ ‘’Wait, do I give it to the Ouroborasian princess? Pray tell me. Soghba!’’ But the old man turned around as abruptly he had entered, and so did those men who slavishly tread in his footsteps. Leaving Synogchouta and his fellows in bewilderment. Yaldbaw mutters under his breath.‘’Is it such a part of their dogma to be as cryptic as possible? ...Religious nutjobs tend to be like that -- worthless. Just accept his little trinket as another gift for your bride.’’ The celebration continued, though the spirit of merriness had left the manor for the rest of the day. Many of the guests that had come to the Daveithai manor were Axohar themselves, and Soghba’s appearance and ‘gift’ could only be an omen...
Population: 6 million humans, about 100,000 non-human Eirenari barbarians – and an untold (albeit vast) number of Ghoul-spawn that comprise the vast majority of Uudhin. Faction: Red Pantheonism Capital: The Salten Citadel of Azagôde Government Type: Diabolical Theocracy Government Description: A Hierophant and Four Warlords known as the Four Horsemen operate from Azagôde, the capital on Uudhin Peninsula. Göl Kasabi is a human autonomous region, and essentially vassals to Azagôde.
Head of State:Xaphagorma, a Witchprophetess with ‘the Azagôdean Hierophant’ as formal title. Currency: Kasabioi Ducat (for the Uudhinite humans, but also in use by Azagôde)
Language: The original language used by Axohaan and his lieutenants was a corrupted dialect of Edukeshan. This corrupted Edukeshan tongue is still used by the Courtiers of Azagôde and the Kasabioi on Kasabi Island. The Eudazeans of the north speak a separate dialect of the same language. It is the language mostly reserved for the higher-ups amongst Axohaan’s following, akin to a liturgical language for the Axohar religion. After Axohaan’s defeat and disappearance, the Ghouls on their part distorted the language over the centuries into something harsh and hideous, with slithery words that other races find difficult to compass, and few are willing to make the attempt. The language spoken by the Ghouls today is a far cry from the original refined Edukeshan lingua it was modelled after, and has evolved into the first ever homunculi language. The Ghoul tongue is spoken rampantly by the inhabitants of Uudhin, even by some of the frontier barbarians and Antimagi. So in summary; the two languages used in Uudhin are Uudhinite Edukar(also known as Azagôdean Edukeshan) and Ghoul Speech, whom are more-or-less related. Anything resembling a ‘Common Tongue’ isn’t spoken. And if the Axohar Spawn were to hear anyone speak in a language unfamiliar, that person would be immediately attacked with prejudice and hate. The Ghouls tell friend from foe by their language. And whether they display an idol or emblem signifying Axohaan thralldom.
It was five centuries ago that Axohaan was maimed by the foul and dreaded Pantokrator Pike – weapon of the Yuwanists. After the Battle and Fall of Xur that followed, and with the destruction of the Salt Prince’s magnificent vessel, the Axohar made a desperate retreat. Some fled to the mountains of Ouroborasia and hid in caves, swamps and abandoned catacombs. Yet the bulk of the faithful were given directive to make for the secondary base of operations of the Axohar Empire: Azagôde. In the land of Exiles, the god-forgotten southern wastes known as Uudhin. A land that had thus far been scarcely populated, always on the far outskirts of imperial ambitions; for it is bare and cold and infertile.
It was here that the Human Edukar of the north fled from the advancing Yuwanist armies and Gushawar to settle on Kasabi Island, nestled near the Tooth of Uudhin. Being so close in proximity to the Witch-Citadel of Azagôde, Kasabi Island was an ideal safe haven against enemy Gods and the slave hordes that do their bidding. And over time the island attracted more refugees from Ouroborasia and beyond, to grow into a respectable hub of international trade known as Göl Kasabi, and ultimately a merchant empire in its own right. The mainland on Uudhin also housed several human communes and fisheries around the shorelines, though none exercising the power and prestige of Göl Kasabi. Far more ominously, the desolation that is mainland Uudhin houses the scattered forces and remnants of the Second Rebellion, and Uudhin has become known the world over as a land of Demons and vagabonds. Fortunately for most part dormant. Yet in recent decades there are signs that Uudhin is stirring from its dark slumber.
-Uudhin hardly functions as a normal nation, but more as a loose confederacy of various communities, all centralized in Azagôde – a tremendous Citadel that serves as capital.
-The Ghouls of mainland-Uudhin can be produced en masse – as more and more leave the dark smithies of the Salten Citadel by the day. They comprise the greatest horde of artificial slave soldiers known in Materia. However, the Ghoul armies use outdated and crude weaponry, and are incapable of adapting to modern circumstances, unknown magics and advanced technology.
-Uudhin is inhospitable to almost all life.
-Uudhin in general lacks cities and settlements to draw manpower from, and their military and Azagôde’s continued survival hinges on external support and the mass-production of Ghouls.
- Fortunately Uudhin houses an autonomous human region with access to markets, exotic equipment and technology from the world over. This would be Göl Kasabi with which Azagôde has a symbiotic relation. Kasabi harvests resources and allies and oversees the reconstruction of Eosphoros – the legendary holy city of Eudeye - while Azagôde ensures the waterways surrounding Uudhin and Kasabi Island are dominated by terrible sea-creatures to keep potential interlopers and military threats at bay. The only way to deter the Axohar sea-creatures is by a ritual incense the Uudhinites have developed to finalize their domination of the region and the southern seas.
Undetailed map of Uudhin.
Why is it called the ‘Salts of Uudhin’? By the relentless ebb and flow of the straits of Uudhin and the wizardry of Azagôde, the Earth has been completely salted. The effect is a curse laid on the land against re-inhabitation. Uudhin is a land in which only the tainted spawn of the Red God Axohaan can now survive. The soil being layered with salt figuratively also denotes this land has firmly become dominion of the Salt Prince.
Contrary to popular belief, the sun does occasionally shine over Uudhin, but most of the time the skies are deeply overcast and stormy. Deeper in-land the lack of sunlight fosters a tundra-like climate where only the hardiest plants can grow, if any, rendering crop yields or any chance of cultivating the land impossible. And that is not even to mention that most of the land is inhabited by Ghouls, who have no need or desire to consume vegetation.
The ominous citadel of Azagôde, hugging the mountainside of Uudhin’s forlorn peaks. Even in its decaying state; the fort is a formidable structure. In the past five centuries this otherwise magnificent fort has been neglected. While today Azagôde is but a fragment of its former glory; this fragment alone is colossal and strong enough to hold out against any slave of Yuwan, or the false messengers of Justinian. The citadel was built eight centuries ago on the orders of Redgod Axohaan to serve as his secondary base of operations – the first one being Xur in Ouroborasia. At the Battle and Fall of Xur, many of the Axohar survivors of this immense and epic battle retreated to Azagôde, and with Axohaan himself vanquished, few Yuwanists bothered trying to hunt down the exiled survivors. In the centuries following Axohaan’s defeat, the Azagôde was still inhabited by some of the Red God’s more defiant followers and offspring. Today; the Citadel is home to the witch Xaphagorma, known infamously as the Salten Sorceress, and similarly to old times it is her base of operations; from where she intends to revive her fallen master.
The Gates of Azagôde.
Göl Kasabi is an Uudhinite autonomous city-state that functions as a more-or-less independent republic, and is led by powerful merchant families known as the Patricians. While the city is led by an elected leader known as the Metropolitan, the ruler of the whole of Göl Kasabi’s Mercantile Empire is known as the Despot. Both of these positions are currently held by the same man; Baltaogliac Daveithai, making him (informally) the leader of Uudhin’s human minority.
Göl Kasabi is a prosperous hub of growing industrious endeavor, and the capital of Uudhin’s human population, and likewise serving as economic and regional capital. Much like Gushawar, Göl Kasabi is strictly human-only as they have long since become alienated from Axohaan’s non-human minions. The then-town was built on the western edge of Kasabi Island by exiles from Eudaz, following Axohaan’s defeat centuries past, and has since grown to a significant regional power. Not through force and violence, but through cunning and commerce. Arguably the non-warlike nature of the Kasabioi is rather unorthodox for followers of the Salt Prince. The island is likewise the headquarters of Uudhin’s navy, operated entirely by humans from Göl Kasabi and other smaller human settlements dotted across Uudhin’s coastlines. Though founded only four centuries ago, the now-City of Göl Kasabi grew rapidly, outperforming many of the older human communes of the area including Solnisata. Their rapid growth and influx of populace was hugely owed to the lands of Ouroborasia and Eudaz being so consumed with war that it displaced many of their locals to seek refuge in Uudhin. And for the past centuries, Kasabi island has been a fairly peaceful haven for their refugees and other dispossessed fugitives. Excelling where the people of the mainland despaired. Especially since gaining access to the markets of Gushawar and beyond. For a capital of one of this world’s major powers, the place is considerably small yet nonetheless not to be underestimated. Göl Kasabi currently houses the strongest human navy in the world’s southern ocean – on par with even the Exaltarchy’s fleet - with many skilled craftsmen, artisans and engineers in their employ. A legacy of having worshipped a wrathful Sea-god also helps with their image of maritime prowess. With the City’s gained riches, the masons and architects recently completed the ambitious construction of a sea wall to fend off attacks from Ghoul pirates. Indeed, ever since the fall of Axohaan; the Salt Prince’s human and non-human followers haven’t been on good terms. They certainly saw no reason to continue the alliance they once shared under Axohaan. However; now that their God is gradually returning to prominence, the Kasabioi humans will gradually have to renew their pact with the Four Horsemen of Uudhin. This pact is no reason for the Kasabioi to dismantle their sea wall, however, as historic grudges, mistrust and rivalry is ever rife. Especially with Axohaan returning; his followers will soon be called to band together once more and face many enemies in years yet to come…
Göl Kasabi largely resembles this lay-out, however the city spans much further into the horizon due to endless sub-urbs having been built in recent decades for Ouroborasian refugees and others. Currently the city’s population is approx. a million.
Oldest City in Uudhin, and the only Edukeshan City that is to this day still inhabited by humans. The greatest mercantile rival to Göl Kasabi and similarly a semi-autonomous State. Solnisata is the most religiously diverse city of Uudhin, with worship of Red Goddess Ishnanneh and even Goddess Yuwan taking prevalence to worship to Axohaan. Over the past few centuries following Axohaan’s defeat, Solnisata had frequently fallen into Gushawari hands, before being recaptured by Axohar; and so back and forth switching sides. There was even a time that Kobolds had taken hold of the city, which soon triggered riots inside the city, and angered both Gushawari and Uudhinites to the extent they actually joined forces and drove them out. The Gushawari presence in the city still shows in the architecture and a minority from Gushawar owning their own quarter of the city. From the riches they acquired from the Eastern markets, the Solnisatans have since expanded and strengthened their land walls to keep their various hostile neighbors at bay -- including the envious Kasabioi republic in the West. As it is partially a Gushawari-themed city, it is the closest thing to a pleasure capital in dark Uudhin, with a great deal of ritual dance, performance, song, prostitution as well as an active slave-market.
Located on the cold and mountainous island of Marolungo, from where the Axohar (re)conquest of Eosphoros was staged. Pontemarolungo is a great fortress which was originally built by the Ouroborasian Justinians as a buffer against pirates -- who have always been a pest in the Southern oceans. Their fortress was built on the ruinous foundations of an Eudeyean temple on the outskirts of Eosphoros. The human Uudhinites of Kasabi island had captured it from Ouroborasia in AWH283, with the very man responsible for its capture still living there. The Axohar have made no attempt to restore the place into the temple it once was, but rather be used as a shelter for sailors, a storage for supplies and a military frontier.
Once the holy city of the Edukeshan Empire of Materia’s antiquity. It had fallen into ruin 13 centuries ago at the rise of the Old Pantheon and the betrayal of Yuwan. The city was in part submerged into the ocean, and without magic to sustain it, the deathly winds from Hypernotei rendered the place uninhabitable for human life. Yuwan had tried to remodel a new Holy City after Eosphoros in the East where she named it Oracheos. And indeed, the lay-out of Oracheos is similar to the now mostly sunken ruins of Eosphoros. Today, the wealthy Axohar Republic of Göl Kasabi is rebuilding the Lost City of the south once more – this time to be committed solely to Axohaan and Red Pantheon worship.
A Kasabioi colony built on the outskirts of Hypernotei, a dangerous and half-made glacial waste at the edge of Materia. Erimachaf supplies Uudhin’s markets with rare resources such as ivory from the local wildlife, but more impressively the rare and magical Eternal Ice harvested from the Hypernotean Abominals . These tremendously magical creatures are not to be underestimated, however, and to obtain even a single shard requires sacrifice. The acquisition of Eternal Ice has hitherto always cost a blood price.
Ecrapot is a town at the very Tooth of Uudhin. It was built as a resting place and anchorage for sailors traveling from the East to the West, mostly with Kasabi Island as destination. The only important landmark of Ecrapot is the Monastery-Fort at the edge of the town, where the infamous Ecrapotic Apostates are trained as the most elite human archers the Axohar have to offer. There are also a fair number of other communes such as Jeziorze, however these are mostly simple fisheries or colonies of Göl Kasabi.
The three main segregated communes of Uudhin:
-The Human minority of Uudhin Known as Uudhinites or Edukar or generalized as Kasabioi in reference to the renowned Merchant Republic on Kasabi Island. They are but a minority compared to the swelling hordes of the Yitizite Ghouls, yet for their naval prowess, wealth and resources immeasurably significant in the plan of Azagôde. Their relation with the Ghouls is generally very poor, and they wish rather to be accepted by other humans rather than to be dehumanized as inherently evil. Their appearance is a mix of Mediterranean and Oriental.
-Ghouls/Yitizites Uudhin’s majority. The Ghouls, formally known as the Yitizites, represent not a singular race but is rather a designation for all Spawn whose origins lie in Axohar Magic. They come in many shapes and forms; some are lumbering giants, while the majority are about half the length of an adult man. In general they appear like malformed humans mixed with animals; usually amphibian, serpent, fish, water bird and insect. Being the spawn of a Redgod associated with sea and waters, most Ghouls are adept swimmers. Technically speaking the Yitizites are Homunculi; forged and bred by Axohaan and his human Sorcerers, however there is very little to distinguish them from genuine Demons. As such to the general populace they came to be known simply as demons or more popularly; Ghouls. Despite having many variations of sinister appearances and manifestations, Ghouls do not have distinct personalities. Rather, each is an aspect of Axohaan himself, and thereby share a watered-down parody of his personality and ambitions for domination of both Material and Celestial Planes, and war against the Gods. It is also why the Ghouls are inherently devoted to Axohaan while by all rights being slaves to him. What makes them so frightening is not how violent or unsettling they appear; but rather how cunning they are. Ghouls are very proficient schemers; creative in their cruelties, infinite in their perversities and infliction of pain unto Axohaan’s sworn enemies. They are collectively very competent soldiers and tacticians for traditional (medieval) battlefields, infamous and overwhelmingly victorious during Axohaan’s Second Rebellion. However their greatest flaw is their inability to adapt to new ages and to them unknown sciences. Ghouls are designed to think only in certain thought patterns, and to think outside of them is beyond them. For instance; they would be witless against flying vehicles, and at best try to shoot them down with bow or classical artillery. They cannot operate mortars or muskets.
-Eirenari Frontier Barbarians Located in the border region of northern Uudhin and southern Eudaz, which is considerably more habitable and sustaining to life compared to deeper south. The Frontier Barbarians are comprised of various exiled native races of what is today Aberys. Some of them Red Pantheonist humans, while others are Pigguts, (humanoid pigs) Drimor, (humanoid boars -- generally sturdier than the Pigguts) and Minotaurs. Over the past centuries Uudhin has increasingly taken on the role as a haven for Red Pantheonists from all over Materia, yet to house all these newcomers; Uudhin must adapt and expand outwards. And with the arrival and military support of the Eirenari, the Horsemen of Uudhin have done just that – at the expense of Eudaz. They are stationed in occupied regions of southern Eudaz, bunkered in remnants of ancient Edukeshan fortresses, and the Ghoul mountain-holdouts located in the Forlorn Peaks that separate Eudaz from Ouroborasia. The foremost leader of the Eirenari, a Drimor warlord by the name Rhunex, has become the Fourth and newest Horseman of Uudhin to complete the Salt Prince’s army. Soon the Third Rebellion against the Gods will begin…
Military Doctrine:‘’Grip! Crash! Whip! Slash!’’ Kasabi Island Military: 60.000 Mainland Uudhin Military: 90.000
In traditional Edukeshan warrior garments as seen in human communities not just on Kasabi island, but all over Uudhin. They are poorly armoured but competent in the use of the spear. They are mostly civilian volunteers and community guards rather than the professionally trained warriors seen below.
Kasabioi warriors excelled in traditional Edukeshan martial swordplay. The members of the Brotherhood are drawn exclusively from wealthy merchant families, particularly younger sons of Kasabioi Patricians, for their mandatory gear and equipment surely aren’t cheap. They are prestigious, agile and well-trained units of Kasabi Island akin to Knights.
Similarly to the Blade Brothers, the archery of the Kasabioi are amongst their finest warriors and drawn from rich and middling families, capable as both marksmen as well as melee fighters. They are often employed to man ships or take part in dangerous expeditions into hostile territory. These days that could be anywhere from mainland Uudhin to Ouroborasia or even Hypernotei in the distant south.
The Uudhinite humans and especially the Kasabioi were never quite a cavalry people, and horses were only used for navigation of land and sending messengers. Per occasion shock cavalry are employed to harass and flank enemy positions. These men do not see much battle, however, and were thus far used to chase away feral Ghouls. The actual and competent human cavalry of Uudhin are actually Eudazean mercenaries. (See Military of Eudaz.)
The units manning the navy; the most experienced human seafarers of the southern seas. Armed with either arquebuses or crossbows and swords for melee combat. Many Marines have shady backgrounds as privateers and slavers… which is arguably where their skill and expertise comes from.
Also called the Spice Guard or Wardens of the Red Gold, though Salt is more appropriate for Axohar warriors. They are the household guard of the Patricians, and the most trained and proper Career Soldiers Göl Kasabi has to offer. As the Kasabioi established lucrative trade routes to whom they owe perhaps their very existence, all manner of things were adopted and adapted from Red Pantheon and Yuwanist cultures the Kasabioi interacted with. This is reflected by those men who guard the sections of the routes, specifically the human-harbours dotted around Uudhin’s shores. These are the Salten Guard; armed with scythes and gear in Yuwanist and Eudazean fashion, and wearing helmets resembling those of lions – much like the description of Axohaan’s vessel during the Second Rebellion. In recent years the Salten Guard are likewise the warriors overseeing the reconstruction of Eosphoros. Rather than a straight-up Warrior unit, their role is more akin to that of a Military Police -- a unit meant for holding defensive positions and serving as retainers, bodyguards and enforcers of Patricians and the Metropolitan. They are not normally seen on a battlefield.
These are not officially part of the military but rather the priesthood; yet their magical support makes them an essential part of Uudhin’s human army. Regular Priests of Axohaan are easily recognized by their expressive horned masks and dark sober robes. They accompany warriors to the battlefield chiefly to sacrifice enemy hostages to the Salt Prince, that their God may muster the theurgia to free himself from Ashmedairus -- so the story goes. An Axohar high priest is known as a Cantor, and Cantors are what many would call Red-Wizards, and often operate the Ghoul Smithies of Azagôde. Superiour to the Cantors is the title of Archcantor, and after Archcantor you have the Hierophant, which only few in Uudhin hold.
Also known as Klepts. They are common in the human communities of mainland Uudhin. These men are alleged to Azagôde and in proxy to Axohaan directly. They are what comes to mind when Axohar humans are brought up, and many corsairs in the southern oceans dress similarly. They are marked by their skull-shaped and horned helmets, their agility and wilful swordplay. While they are quick on their feet and trained in evading blows, standard Axohar are often only lightly armoured. They tend to scavenge and plunder the armour used by their enemies, and so many of these Uudhinite warriors may be seen wearing Justinian or Gushawari mail.
Ascetic warrior-monks trained in the Eschaton Monastery of Ecrapot, located at the very Tooth of Uudhin. They combine marksmanship with magic for unnatural speed, armour penetration and rapid fire. However, their dependency on magic will render these archers slaves to it overtime. The long-serving veterans of the Apostates retain little of their initial personality and become essentially thralls to the Salt Prince -- much like the Ghouls…
Magically imbued cavalry, the elite units and thereby least human of the human forces. These men are more fanatically devoted to Axohaan than even the priesthood, for they voluntarily cursed their very souls to selfless servitude. They garrison the colossal walls and stables of Azagôde, long since having resigned the humanity they once had, and are now entirely committed to Xaphagorma. Their horses are bred in Azagôde to make them unnaturally strong, carnivorous and malevolent. ...Who would have thought that horses could be bred and altered to inherently evil creatures? And they complement the nefarious men riding them perfectly. On occasions they ride out to scour the lands for intruders, slaying anything not wearing the mark or spell of the Salt Prince.
Once human, now hulking abominations utterly corrupted by Axohar magic and dressed in enchanted plate mail. They are permanently stationed in the Salten Citadel of Azagôde where they patrol the halls ceaselessly through both day and night -- never tiring. They speak only the corrupted dialect of Edukeshan known as Grey Edukar, and operate the gates and guard the vaults and the smithies.
Northern Border Military: 30.000
Eirenari Warrior Exile
Red Pantheonist humans known as the Eirenari, the true natives of present-day Aberys. They are fierce and hardy fighters, durable against the elements and survivors first and foremost. While they are physically fit and battle-hardened from their skirmishes against the Justinians, they are often only primitively equipped and armoured. To make up for it; these men and women have expertise in archery, melee combat, horsemanship and anything a proper medieval warrior would be capable of.
Considerably less berserking and frenzied as their Drimor cousins tend to be, the Pigguts are crafty highwaymen that are employed to patrol and sabotage mountain passes and roads leading towards Ouroborasia and Uudhin. They are also sturdy, with greater stamina and a stronger physique than ordinary humans have. Though there are only several thousand of them, the Pigguts are ideal and professional soldiers & border-guards for the main-land Uudhinites.
The berserking hordes of the Drimor are filled with a vengeance and the seething promise of their mad Red God – Utarr. The insane bloodthirst of their god has rendered them almost primal savages, beyond reasoning or saving. Azagôde has seen to it that these Drimor berserkers may use their fury for a worthy and noble cause, and accordingly they are now pledged to the Salt Prince. Though typically primitive fighters relying on brute strength; in the past decade the Uudhinites had them supplied with better equipment as to better carry their fury and anarchy unto the battlefield, particularly employed in skirmishes against the Eudazean apostates.
The clergy of Utarr among the Eirenari barbarians are typically the Drimor Shamans. Aside from being capable magic users and warriors themselves, their main purpose in the army is to invoke the Eirenari with the blessing of Utarr; to whip them in an insane and inhuman frenzy. These Shamans are essentially arcane demagogues and the mouthpieces of Utarr that keep the Drimor in a perpetual rage, which is particularly handy when it comes to the art of war.
Elite Infantry: Minotaur Smasher
The Minotaurs originally came to Aberys when they migrated south from their distant homeland. And a decade ago they were forced to migrate even further south – to the edge of the world where land turns to ocean, to the home of the Axohar. Though there are not many left of them; the Minotaurs are the most competent fighters available among the Frontier guards of Uudhin. They combine the brute strength and rage of the Drimor with the wit and cunning of the Pigguts, while being stronger than both. They’re outfitted with the finest plate mail and large maces to crush skulls and/or hew a man to a puddle of blood. The Minotaur battalions are a mighty addition to the Uudhinite armies, to be sure.
In theory most Kasabioi ships aren’t designed as fighter ships. But in the dangerous, pirate, ghoul and kobold threatened waters of the straits of Uudhin and the southern ocean in general, the distinction between a merchant ship and a fighting ship is a fine one.
Kasabioi Carrack A typical Kasabioi military carrack. Stoutly built with high sides, and a turret containing many cannons at the bow. Complemented by sails there is always a crew of rowers to propel it onward, often comprised of lower-class working men in Göl Kasabi or indebted slaves. Extensive use of cannon fire has won Kasabioi carracks maritime supremacy and fame with their rivals in the rise of the Kasabioi mercantile empire.
Hypernotean Navigator Designed for traveling longer distances, and also commonly used by the corsairs of Uudhin and whale-hunters. They are less stout, but capable of great and nigh unnatural racing-speed.
Uudhinite Galleon The strongest and most magically laden-ships, often pledged more to Xaphagorma than to the Metropolitan of Göl Kasabi. These are reserved for high profile escorts, transportation to the Holy City of Eosphoros, containing slaves and to rival and subdue the ships of the Kobolds and whoever else gets in the way of Uudhin’s interests.
Numbers: As many as there is salt in the ocean.
Ghouls of varying kinds wearing plate-armour.
Ghoulish spear infantry.
Ghoulish sword infantry.
Ghoulish cavalry riding on large rats, frogs, cats or other strange unnaturally large-creatures.
Elite Infantry: Diablo Dervish
Larger Ghouls covered from top to toe in thick plate armor. They are strong, durable, capable of rending through rocks and smiting cracks into the earth. But they are slow and witless.
Elite Cavalry: Salt-Apes
Do not be alarmed to see Ghouls riding on these monstrous white-chimps charging at you from the mountain side. …Actually be very alarmed.
Goliath Ghoul Mount
Some Ghouls are so large that they could serve as the mount rather than the rider. Fortunately these are very few and always kept as a reserve. But woe to those who march through Uudhin not under Axohaan’s banner.
Azagôde does not have a very effective flying unit to counter the Wyverns of the east. Leviathan Locust are winged Ghouls, but not strong and depend – as the name implies – on numbers to overwhelm enemy flyers.
They are weak and unarmoured creatures, but extremely versatile -- being capable of both swimming and flying, and harassing foes wherever they can find them.
Ghouls spawned from the depths and reefs of Uudhin. They are not often seen crawling unto beaches, though sometimes they might. Their job is mostly to sabotage, damage and beat holes into the hull of (especially) enemy ships.
A versatile amphibious Ghoul that is equally effective underwater as on land. They can never wear heavy armour and sometimes don’t even have any weapons other than their own claws and teeth.
The coastal reefs around the Tooth of Uudhin host the Axeel.. Titanic Eels bred by the Salt Prince to serve as chiefest of nemeses to the deep-sea dragons that were once prevalent to Drakma’s shores. ...Until the merciless hunt of the Axeel rendered the deep-sea dragons nigh extinct. Having served their purpose and with no dragons left to find, the Axeel turned and devoured each other instead. After Axohaan’s defeat the monsters became a lot less aggressive – retreating to the reefs of Uudhin where they slumber. To keep monsters such as the Axeel at bay from the maritime traderoutes, the Kasabioi sailors long since developed a mystical incense hanging from their masts as repellent -- and keep the Axeel slumbering in the reefs.
-State Religion: Axohar -Patron Deity: The Salt Prince
What various idols of Axohaan look like. Often depicted with two giant (Ax)eels as seen in the middle one.
-Religion Demographics: 98% Red Pantheonist 1% Yuwanist (in Solnisata) 1%Justinian (northern Eosphoros) With Red God worship in respective order of prevalence: Axohaan, Utarr, Ishnanneh, Ephemem, the Turquoise Lord, Vex’xalar and Ishigahnun)
Vex’xalar? Indeed, some humans in Uudhin revere Vex’xalar the Lurker Below, as a deity worthy of worship and make regular sacrifices to him alongside Axohaan and other Red Gods, perhaps naïvely.
-Holy Relics in Possession: Fragment of the Silent Ankh (Masterless) A broken part of a much greater Celestial Artifact that was once wielded by Eudeye. It served as a teleporter-of-sorts, though its true innate powers and origins is shrouded in ancient mystery. The thing is overflowing with magic and much of Xaphagorma’s wizardry is owed to it. Azagôde holding this fragment is what legitimizes Axohaan as Eudeye’s successor.
Rod of Tempest (Bound) Uudhin is a land constantly overcast by dark and ominous clouds. A perpetual and malevolent storm. The Rod of Tempest has the power of taking the Storm of Uudhin and the vengeance of Axohaan to the rest of Materia. Alternatively, the Rod is also capable of lifting said storm.
-Holy Sites under Control: Eosphoros; Southern Holy City of Eudeye, an ancient god that was Axohaan’s progenitor.
-The Cathedral of Tempest in northern-mainland Uudhin, one of the few landmarks that attracts Red Pantheonist pilgrims to Uudhin. To avoid being molested by Ghouls on the way, the pilgrims must wear the emblem of the Salt Prince on their garments.
-Notable Magical Institutions: The Salten Citadel of Azagôde, religious seat of the Azagôdean Hierophant and Witches and current mortal capital of Axohaan.
The Monastery of Eschaton on the Tooth of Uudhin, where the Ecrapotic Apostates are trained, is a minor magical institution head-quartered in Ecrapot. The men trained there are ascetic warrior-monks that combine archery with magic.
-Religious Interpretations/Culture: Göl Kasabi is more or less secular and not a very religiously motivated faction, which has earned them the scorn of Azagôde. Beyond that, Axohaan is near-universally revered and worshipped in Uudhin. The laws of the land are fairly tolerant towards worship of other gods, and shrines to other Red Pantheonist deities are commonly found. Though in Axohar scripture; the Salt Prince is the Universal Leader of the Red Pantheon, and the other Red Gods are regarded as his associates and underlings, whom Axohaan permits their independence, yet ultimately do His bidding.
Xaphagorma, Witch Prophetess of Axohaan and Azagôdean Hierophant
Baptismal name:Voice of War and Worship The oldest, strongest and most vicious of all Axohar witches. She is the one true driving force of Uudhin -- for no one else holds as much collective sway over the Ghouls, in water or land, or over the humans of the coastal communes, Göl Kasabi and Pontemarolungo. All of Uudhin ultimately answers to her or suffer the consequences. With her telepathic mind she serves as the connecting focal point between Ashmedairus and the Salt Prince’s mortal minions. In origin she was a servant of Witch Goddess Ephemem that, as part of her pact with Axohaan, was sent to Azagôde as her ambassador. Though by the sheer exposure to the heart of Uudhin, her mind and powers were subverted into being another of Axohaan’s thralls. Xaphagorma became so utterly corrupted by the Axohar magic she began to harness that her initially graceful form malformed into a crude, stout old crone, and she now covers up her face at all times that none may see her true and malformed form… What’s left to be seen beyond the Red Veil are the eyes that reflect with Axohaan’s malice and anger. She became the mouthpiece and very mortal manifestation of the Salt Prince, and long-since relinquished her allegiance to Ephemem.
Rhunex, Warlord of the Ashen Devils
Baptismal name:The Red Horseman of Uudhin Rhunex, son of Rhunox is a champion and chosen of the Red God Utarr, and part of a long line of famed chieftains before and after the conquest of Eirenar/Aberys. His tribe had been at the forefront of resistance against the Justinians, and his grudge and hatred for them and their false-god is immense. Even now he is bitter about the loss of his homeland and would wish nothing but to sack Lorimir – the capital of Aberys. However, he is no longer in the position to do so. The Ashen Devils have now retreated southeastwards towards Uudhin and the Forlorn Peaks, one of the last holdouts for Red Pantheonism in the south of Materia. It is said he received a vision from the Salt Prince beckoning him to Uudhin. And he blessed Rhunex with the promise of revenge, smothered in a dream of chronic and sustained cruelty. Now baptized into one of Axohaan’s greatest generals – the Red Horseman of Uudhin, the embodiment of War and Violence itself.
Uribataar, Carrier of Tempests
Baptismal name:The Pale Horseman of Uudhin He carries the storm and power of Uudhin back to Ouroborasia. Uribataar is an airborne general, second only to Xaphagorma, and actively involved in the Ouroborasian civil war where he flies legions of Ghouls through the stormy skies. Wherever the Tempest Carrier appears, dark clouds and whirlwinds always come about him, and has earned him a dreaded and despised name as harbinger of doom and foul weather. Little is known of his origins save for an Ouroborasian legend stating Uribataar once was an Ouroborasian captain, damned and punished by the Salt Prince when he sailed too close to Uudhin.
The legend goes as follows: The Ouroborasian Emperor had tasked him with an overseas invasion of Uudhin to lay siege to Azagôde, and the captain had pledged the Emperor to transport an army several thousand men strong. But as the fleet set off, the wind opposed them, and went against him more and more until the Ouroborasian captain walked the deck, cursing at the wind in the Edukar language. "Is this it? Do you call this a storm? Ha hah, you must be joking! The wind be damned!" The storm rose and this time the captain cursed Xaphagorma: "I will make it to Uudhin and deliver these men to the Witches’ doorstep. Queen of Witches be damned! Mark my words, fiend.’’ Upon saying these words, the storm continued to rise even more savagely and the captain proceeded to curse the Salt Prince directly: "Is this it? Do you call this a storm? Ha hah, you must be joking! Axohaan be damned, I will definitely make it through even if my soul be enslaved in so doing. And I should beat about here till the day of your return." The captain’s words caused the storm to subside as if by sorcery, and it allowed the fleet to indeed reach portage at the jagged cliffs of Uudhin. But before anchorage Axohaan rose from the sea, and he resembled a ten-horned beast with a crown on each horn. "If you curse me," He spoke "then I'll curse you in turn. Indeed, you shall take these men to the Witches’ doorstep, and you shall uphold your end of the bargain and be mine slave, to beat about in Uudhin till the day of my return.’’
Baptismal name:The Black Horseman of Uudhin In his prime, Iadalbaoth was known as ‘the Axonarch’. He is centuries old and in origin not a native of Uudhin, but rather of Eudaz. Three centuries ago, he and his cohorts of Eudazean Axohar used the War in Heaven to stage their own coup, to overthrow the Eudazean Yuwanists and restore Eudaz to Axohaan worship. What followed was fierce civil strife, yet ultimately his plans were thwarted and he was compelled to retreat to Uudhin, where he has since remained. For the past centuries little was heard of him, for the shame of his defeat drove him to reclusion. The Eudazeans assumed he died a long time ago. But woe to the unbeliever, Axonarch Iadalbaoth is very much alive and awaiting the time of his master’s return… When he shall march back to his Old Battlefield. As of 300AWH, Iadalbaoth has been deployed by Xaphagorma to recently annexed Eosphoros to oversee the reconstruction of the holy city and the foundations for the Grand Temple of the Salt Prince.
Iadalbaoth had fathered many offspring with a harem of concubines he owned back in the day. Dozens of his sons were killed in his (and Axohaan’s) wars, and Iadalbaoth has outlived each of them. He is in fact old enough that there are many human Uudhinites alive that can distantly trace their ancestry to him. This can, depending on who you ask, be either a source of pride or a source of shame.
Baptismal name:The Vindictation of Salt The Pinnacle of Dread. Rhokaur cannot speak -- for his ire is too great to be expressed in words. To stand near him is to feel the revulsion he feels for himself. Though supposedly only a Ghoul, the Witches of Azagôde have wrought him into a monstrous juggernaut of violence and rage. Topping it off by gearing him up with the stoutest armor and weaponry available in the entirety of Uudhin, specially forged in the arcane fires of Azagôde for his use. By Rhokaur’s sheer presence alone you can sense his overwhelming hatred. Hatred for the violence of his foes, hatred for his own futility, and hatred for Xaphagorma; who created him to be the monster he is. Frustration only fuels Rhokaur’s strength however and thus be Axohaan’s mightiest champion.
Metropolitan Baltaogliac Daveithai
Baptismal name:Awaiter of Apostates Borne of a line of rich Kasabioi merchants and sailors known as the Daveithai, Baltaogliac is the most powerful Patrician of Kasabi’s Mercantile Empire. The Metropolitan is the highest ranking title of Uudhin’s human communes, and equivalent to a mayor or even a Duke. As Metropolitan, Baltaogliac is essentially the ruler and top-admiral of Göl Kasabi. Baltaogliac is unusually powerful however, as he has likewise been elected the life-long position of Despot to the whole of Kasabi Island and its Mercantile Empire. The reason for this election was to counter the influence of Azagôde; as it rendered Baltagoliac the sole entity of Uudhin -- outside of Azagôde -- with the sway to defy Azagôdean Hierophant Xaphagorma herself. Xaphagorma and Baltaogliac have been long at odds with one another as the interests of their factions only seldom overlap. Were it not for the Metropolitan’s steadfast leadership, Göl Kasabi would have been rendered a puppet government or even absorbed to a direct extension of Azagôde. For this reason the Witches would actually prefer to see him dead were it not for him being a chosen Champion and – according to legend – a mortal descendent of the Salt Prince himself. He is described by Synogchouta as aloof, introverted and a cold pragmatic thinker with little sign of affection for his own wife and family. Beyond two daughters, Baltaogliac has no male offspring and therefore none of his direct blood to succeed the Daveithai Family. Upon the death of his only son (for which either Xaphagorma or the Kobolds, or both, are blamed), the position of heir-presumptive of Daveithai has gone to his unwilling nephew; Synogchouta.
Admiral Larabtanos Miamai
Baptismal name:Messenger of Man’s Mortal Sin Despot of Marolungo, an island serving as military frontier and relying on Kasabioi rations and reinforcements. Larabtanos is a powerful Patrician and head of the Miamai family which is nowadays seated on Marolungo. Adorned with a helmet of golden skulls in the fashion of Uudhinite Klepts, he is a considerably more pious Axohar that has vowed to hold the fortress of Pontemarolungo unto the time of Axohaan’s return, and to the bitter end. Larabtanos is considered the right-hand man of Baltaogliac.
Baptismal name:Paragon of the Pentagram Informally known as just Chouta, as Synogchouta is too tongue-bending to most foreigners.
A nephew of the Metropolitan and a Blade Brother of Göl Kasabi from the prestigious Daveithai family. After the death of his cousin, Synogchouta has recently been selected to be Baltaogliac’s successor as head of the Daveithai family, and all it implies. He is to be married off to a niece of the Ouroborasian Emperor much to his own dismay. In contrast to other Patricians, Chouta never particularly cared for local intrigue or the threat of Xaphagorma. While the Axohar have always been a stigmatized people-group -- dehumanized as inherently evil by the global community -- Synogchouta is definitely one of the ‘less evil’ ones despite his grim and often aggressive demeanor. In the days leading up to the beginning of this grim tale; Synogchouta had assembled a small fleet and company of battle-hardened mercenaries and fellow Blade Brothers for an expedition to trail the northern rivers.
Baptismal name:Templar of Infidel Infamy Another nephew of the Metropolitan and cousin of Synogchouta. An esteemed and even feared corsair and amongst the leading navigators of Hypernotei; Yaldbaw is a battle hardened veteran that survived various arduous campaigns and expeditions on his uncle’s behalf. As his Daveithai blood comes from the maternal line (he is the son of the Metropolitan’s younger sister) he should not ordinarily be carrying the Daveithai family name. However his father -- who is a great-great grandson of Axonarch Iadalbaoth -- carries no family name whatsoever, and as such Yaldbaw is still accounted for as a Daveithai. However his paternal connections to Azagôde and the Axonarch means Yaldbaw will never be a claimant or heir to Daveithai or Kasabioi property. Rather than something to be proud of; his ancestry is rather a stigmatized source of shame on Kasabi Island. Yaldbaw has always been regarded as more-or-less an illegitimate family member, scorned enough so that his current status as an esteemed captain for Göl Kasabi was less earned by nepotism as it was through his own merit, dedication to the Mercantile Empire and brutal efficiency in dealing with rivals.
Baptismal name:Keys of Chaos and Conversion A hermit and prophet living in Göl Kasabi. His title of Hierophant is owed to the fact he originally came from Ouroborasia, but compelled to escape from the civil-war raging there as another refugee. Soghba was the Xurite Hierophant, a title which during the Second Rebellion meant he’d have been second only to the Salt Prince himself, but today a title that carries almost no weight. While he is the most spiritual and top-ranking theocrat in Göl Kasabi, his whereabouts are so obscure that none save for his most devoted acolytes can trace him. Somewhere in the remote suburbs of Göl Kasabi, Soghba is disguised amidst thousands of other refugees in sober ordinary clothes in a make-shift shrine dedicated to Axohaan, from where he operates.
To some he is a diviner and oracle, while to others a traumatized, gibbering madman that can speak only in vague terminology.
List of Historical Grievances: -The Goddess Yuwan for having betrayed Eudeye – the god to whom Axohaan claims loyalty to this very day. And he vowed to avenge his old master.
-The Justinians for their cleansings against the native Edukeshan people of Ouroborasia, the people that for millennia had worshipped Eudeye and later the Salt Prince.
-Ephemem for not having come to Axohaan’s aid during the Second Rebellion.
Relations: Ouroborasia Ouroborasia was once the seat of power of Axohaan-worship, with the fallen Citadel of Xur being located there. After Axohaan’s defeat however, the Axohar hold on Ouroborasia was shattered and ultimately ousted entirely when the Justinians invaded and religiously cleansed the lands -- roughly 150 years ago. After which, the Uudhinites and Ouroborasians became the bitterest enemies, though did not engage in battle as much as the Ouroborasians did against the Yuwanists and Eudazeans. East Ouroborasia having become Red pantheonist once again was an undertaking largely staged from Uudhin, and Azagôde has played no small part in the war-effort against the Justinians.
Eudaz Together with Uudhin, Eudaz is the last remaining successor-state of Ancient Edukesh. However, Azagôde treats the Eudazeans as apostates, and the Ghoul hordes have for the past centuries been relentlessly hostile and encroaching ever northward against them. On the bright side; between the Human Uudhinites and Eudazeans is a strong sense of ethnic affinity as the children of Edukesh. But beyond that their difference in religion has become a deep rift.
Gushawar A strong love-hate relationship exists with Gushawar. Though Gushawar is formally at war with Azagôde, they are important partners to Göl Kasabi, to whom they owe much of their riches. The relations with Gushawar plays a great part in the rift within Uudhin between Azagôde and Göl Kasabi. Gushawar’s hatred and mistrust for the Axohar however is the greatest source of tension, and the merchants of Kasabi therefore never bring it up.
Drakma The closest thing to a competitor in the generally Axospawn-infested oceans. Not even a century ago, Drakma was Uudhin’s most reviled and actively fought enemy. In recent decades relations have cooled down and a compromise was made; granting the Kobolds access to the waterways around Uudhin peninsula. There are still tensions, yet war against the other is not in their mutual interest. Militarily, both Kasabi, Azagôde and the Kobolds are poised to land a blow against the same enemy…
Cultural Notes: Among the Axohar there are plenty similarities with Yuwanist factions ideologically, culturally and religiously. Axohar and Yuwanists both generally putting emphasis on independence and liberty, excessive use of slavery and magic, not to mention the oriental cultural themes, and both Axohaan and Yuwan hailing from the same pantheon of the Seat of Prophecy – that of Eudeye. What sets Axohar apart the most is their skill as (and dependency on) Homunculi-crafting. Arguably they are the most capable of Materia in that regard. One could consider Axohar as ‘Dark Yuwanists’.
Yitizer was framed by Yuwan and punished by Eudeye for a crime he did not commit, and was exiled from his court to a remote Dungeon Realm at the edge of the Celestial Plane, Ashmedairus, where his spirit has remained. From then on Yitizer sought to prove his loyalty to Eudeye by whatever means he could. So when Eudeye was overthrown by Yuwan, Yitizer immediately sought to avenge his Overlord by killing the Usurper Goddess. Yitizer’s history is marked by two divine rebellions he helped instigate.
Shortly after the millennial cycle, Yitizer together with other, older Red God prisoners were freed from Ashmedairus by Ephemem; another loyalist of Eudeye. This began the First Rebellion, a war which occurred in both the Celestial Plane and the Material Plane. Yitizer was in on the plot to assassinate Yuwan, and triggered infighting within Eudeye’s former pantheon. Yitizer and Ephemem called on the Eudeyean empires of Materia to resist the renegade gods as false idols. Yitizer, Ephemem , Eidolona and Ishigahnun formed the ‘Shadow Pantheon’. They divided their spheres of influence of the Material Plane between the Moon, Earth, Sky and Sea. Ephemem was to be Master of Moon, Ishigahnun Master of Earth, Eidolona Master of Sky and Yitizer Master of Sea. Between 12 and 11 centuries ago, the First Rebellion consumed much of the world, but was ultimately subdued by the combined forces of Yuwan and Ashenlur. When Ashenlur slew Eidolona with his sword, Agur, the other gods lost their momentum. As soon the odds were against them, Ephemem abandoned the war entirely and went into seclusion, for which Yitizer has never forgiven her. Meanwhile He and Ishigahnun were driven back into Ashmedairus. Yuwan sealed them away and the two gods have remained there since. And there, the imprisoned Red Gods of Earth and Sea fought one another in frustration for a long time. Yuwan could not find Ephemem however, but the First Rebellion was at an end.
From here on, Yitizer knew he was not in a position to reconquer the Celestial Plane by force, and began to concentrate his efforts purely on the Material Plane through deceiving a Yuwanist wizard of Ouroborasia named Ithemarun Ys, with Yitizer presenting himself as Axohaan, an angel sent by Yuwan. Ouroborasia had recently lost their Emperor, and Yitizer told Ys that, as Yuwan’s champion, he was meant to take the opportunity to install a Yuwanist dynasty lest a false one takes the throne. But to do this, he’d need the support of an avatar of Yuwan manifested on earth; Axohaan. Ithemarun Ys was persuaded to craft a homunculi vessel for Yitizer to possess as his personal vessel. And Yitizer gave Ithemarun Ys a description of what the vessel was to be: a golem white as salt – strong exceedingly, a man with two faces on both sides of the same head, both with great iron teeth within mouths resembling those of lions, but without eyes - the top of the head adorned with a purple jagged crown consisting of ten great horns. At the centre of the crown is a smaller eleventh horn, and this horn had two eyes of a man. This vessel was called the Prince of Salt, and Yitizer possessed it. And all who beheld him were struck with awe. And Yitizer cast his spell on all Ouroborasia, and sent visions to the people, to whom it was already common knowledge Yuwan was the one that betrayed Eudeye. And Axohaan said unto them: ‘’I am Heir of Eudeye; Yitizer!’’ And warned them of Ys’ plot to usurp Ouroborasia by planting a new Dynasty. Some were convinced, and that night a crowd of armed men stormed Ithermarun Ys’ palace and put him in chains. Ys himself declaring that it was not his, but the plan of Axohaan, who he consigned ‘Prophet’ and ‘Thing of Evil’. Ithemarun Ys in his final hour of clarity sent a message to his colleagues in Gushawar and beyond; warning them for the approach of the Deceiver Angel of Yuwan, whose name is Axohaan. And all on the Material Plane knew him thenceforth as Axohaan, the Salt Prince.
Axohaan transformed Ithermarun’s palace to his base of operations, and it became the Citadel of Xur. After declaring to be Eudeye’s successor, Axohaan had expected all still devoted to dead-god Eudeye would rally to Xur and worship him. However not all obeyed his call, for which Axohaan decided to chastise them. His first war in Materia was to attack the Eudeyean worshippers that refused to acknowledge him as their god's successor. And so Axohaan personally at the head of an army subdued them, till all would either flee from the devastation, or acknowledge their new overlord. However all the war did was bring further damage to an already dying religion, and Axohaan himself underestimated this. The dreaded Yuwanists, upon Ythemarun Ys’ warning, began already encroaching westward to grab territory that were formerly Eudeyean.
Meanwhile to compensate for the loss of his human followers during the first war, Axohaan used the arts and magic he had gleaned from Ythermarun Ys, who was still his prisoner, to breed a slave-race of Homunculi, which was to be an angelic species surpassing humanity in terms of cunning, technological ingenuity and prowess. However Axohaan once more overestimated his own power, for he did not possess the power of a genuine god, and could therefore not match the grandeur of a genuine divinely inspired race as humanity or elvenfolk. Each spawn that began to take form was distributed a fragment of Ythemarun’s own tortured and tarnished soul, which Axohaan reproduced and copied over. And each creation thereby experiences Ythermarun’s anguish, misery but above all: the submission to Axohaan. What came about were malformed abominations, a collection of Demonic Spawn dubbed the Yitizites, but known the world-over as Ghouls. Their induction into the bulk of the Axohar forces disillusioned his human followers even further, and more began to reject him. Axohaan knew thenceforth that he had to segregate his human followers from his non-human ones, and began to put more stock into Demonic homunculi warriors than he did of the other races that followed him. From the moment Axohaan began to be a god associated with monstrosities, the Axohar war machine was truly awakened, and there was no more stopping it. The second war began, one which was much more devastating. Through brute force and being shamelessly cruel and tyrannical, the Salt Prince conquered much of the southern world in seven battles, annexing even a large portion of Gushawar in a terrifying swarm of demonic hordes, the likes of which the Gushawar people had never seen in their long history. And their people had since been filled with a nigh primal disdain and hatred for the Ghouls and their evils.
With the crushed souls of war he had harvested so far in Materia, Axohaan sought to create a vessel for Ishigahnun to possess. But to create an avatar to match the power of a Red God, Axohaan desired the Dragon Eggs of the lands east of Uudhin. First he sent a horde of Ghouls to invade Drakma and take the eggs by force, but Axohaan once more overestimated his strength, and the Dragons united to defiantly annihilate the invaders. Then Axohaan turned to using subtler means by which to impose his will; by sending visions to Karkarth, the leader of the Dragons. Since dragons cannot tolerate to be ruled over even Karkarth had only minimal power. Seeing this, Axohaan communed with him and proposed a deal; he would offer him magic strong enough to curse all the eggs and bind them to Him. They could only hatch in Karkarth’s lair, and thus give the Dragon-King the power to control the breeding of his kind, and in so doing legitimize his Kingship over all Dragons. In exchange Axohaan desired thirty of the eggs. Karkarth agreed and the curse was cast. But the Dragon-King double crossed the Salt Prince by not delivering him any of the thirty Promised Eggs. The Dragons, meanwhile, were furious that their leader had betrayed them. And rather than go along with his scheme they rise up in revolt, giving Axohaan the opportunity for vengeance as well. As the curse consisted in large of His magic, Axohaan subverts the curse on the eggs into a new curse. For if he could not have Dragons; no one may. When next season the Dragons would see their eggs hatch, they were repulsed to see the hatchlings emerging from the eggs are wretched Kobolds. This was the Salt Prince’s ultimate insult and punishment to the Dragons – to turn their young into the opposite of them; parasitic creatures that procreate like pests, and are stripped of their majesty. It was one of Axohaan’s most heinous and cruellest mischiefs he had wrought on Materia and led to the gradual downfall and extinction of Dragonkind.
Despite having exacted retribution, Axohaan overall failed to obtain even a single Egg. He then turned to his own magics and machinations to attempt and imitate a Dragon. What he ultimately turned up with was a great horned serpent homunculi with a set of ten metallic legs webbed as a black frog’s, who was to be Axohaan’s steed, signifying his domination over both Earth and Sea. Because Axohaan actually fought and defeated Redgod Ishigahnun in battle in Ashmedairus, where both of them were held against their will. And as a consequence Ishigahnun was forced to cede being a mere angel to Axohaan’s Godhood, and assume the form of this Homunculi-Dragon-machination. In his mortal beastform, he was named Kiefra. With Axohaan riding Kiefra into battle in Materia, the two gods were invincible. And the nations of Yuwan and Ashenlur fell before them, until Axohaan was strong enough to break free from his Celestial Prison and take the throne of Yuwan. However it never got so far.
At this point his enemies had learned to exploit Axohaan’s reckless and violent nature, and as such they concocted a means to lure him into a trap. The Yuwanist wizards of Lamash created an extremely potent weapon of Yuwan-based magic -- a weapon that would particularly enrage and challenge Axohaan due to his hateful grudge against Yuwan. This legendary weapon was dubbed the Pantokrator Pike, and it was strong enough to not only destroy an Avatar possession, but also maim the god residing within the material body. A Champion of Ashenlur known only as Deustithiyll took the weapon, and destroyed first Kiefra, undoing him forever after which Axohaan fell down and was enraged. The Prince of Salt almost suffered the same fate, but managed to disarm his opponent and subdue Deustithiyll, but not without having been permanently maimed. Axohaan then sought to claim the Pantokrator Pike for himself, but the weapon shattered in his hands so violently that Axohaan lost his right hand. Knowing that it would take a very long time for Axohaan to recover from this blow, he took Deustithiyll captive to devour his soul.
Meanwhile Axohaan’s enemies learned about his current maimed state and the death of Kiefra, and saw now was the only chance they had to banish Axohaan from the world once and for all. This was the Fifth and final war of the Second Rebellion. A grand army of many races from all the world over marched to Axohaan’s citadel of Xur in Ouroborasia and laid siege to it. After years of battles, back-and-forth sallies from Axohar troops, Xur was ultimately razed to the ground and Axohaan’s forces scattered. His body broken and his spirit narrowly escaping back to Ashmedairus from whence he came. In the century that followed, the Axohar dominion was gradually disintegrated and absorbed by Yuwanist armies while the forces of Axohaan made a desperate retreat, some into the mountains of Ouroborasia and Eudaz, and others to the cold southern wastes of Uudhin, where they have since remained. Thus ended the Second Rebellion against the Gods.
However this was not the end of the Axohar, and many humans and creatures in Uudhin and Eudaz continue to revere him as an idol, and the only God capable of reviving Edukeshan power. The southern citadel of Azagôde became the Axohar seat of power in the era that followed Axohaan’s downfall, operated by the ancient Witch Xaphagorma.
@DracoLunaris Oh excellent. The player of the Teal nation in the north dropped out. Do you want to take over that territory? It was meant as the Justinian frontier nation. Gateway for Justinian expansion further eastwards.
@Klomster That's not possible. You cannot usurp red gods since Redgods don't actually have a 'seat' to usurp -- they are categorized as seatless deities. And Red Gods don't have celestial servants of their own, only mortal ones. But mortal ones can't interact directly with Redgods seeing those are in the Celestial Plane, and mortals in the Material Plane. At best your mortal could have lured the Redgod to enter Materia in an avatar form, and then kill the Avatar. But that doesn't guarantee a god's death. Perhaps the Avatar was lured to the world to BE the Sacrifice? Because if that's the case, there'd be some possibility for your mortal to being a Redgod himself.
Also I do insist you do take a spot on the map as to where your army is currently settled. It doesn't have to be a nation but merely a geographic region, only home to nomads.
@Klomster There is a leeway. If your character were to acquire an artifact that belonged to a dead god (probably one slain by Justinian) and that artifact contains the dead god's magic, your mortal could inherit that magic. After this, he would have to perform a ritual of self-sacrifice. (To become a god, he will have to die by default.) And once dead, if his soul is bound to the artifact he could become a Red God. Not a powerful one, though. He'd have to play it safe all the way, because Justinian is a tremendous and very active foe.