The Second Age of New Areth

Having recovered enough strength to defend themselves from the onslaught of orcs, trolls, and ogres, civilization began to sprout anew on the face of Areth. The Foundations met again, forming a city named Shuma from which to recover the magical arts almost lost in the cataclysm. And in the Second Age of New Areth, the recovering civilizations nearly destroyed themselves.

Under the shared study of the Foundations, great progress was made towards reclaiming the lost lore of Old Areth. Shuma first began to serve as a trading post and diplomatic meeting place, and then it began to transition into a training ground for the military cadres which began to crop up in one city or another. As the populations grew back from the cataclysm over the next century, each city began to field their own military, usually called Townguards in order to avoid the perception of taking arms at their neighbors. In reality, the cities were beginning to adopt a mindset as feudal as that of medieval England, always watching one another for weakness even though none of them had yet dared to attack anything but the barbaric creatures which posed a continual threat to commerce. It was during this time that the first of Shuma's General Magician Practicioners, better known as Mages, ventured forth from Shuma. Mages were the answer to the problem of overly specialized magicians who were unsuited to life in New Areth. The training of a mage combined the most easily learned teachings of all the magical Foundations - Warlock, Conjurer, and Elementalist, gradually progressing into the still-remembered arts of the Travellers. Traveller magic had been the hardest to recover in the new world; the entire trancendental model their spells depended on had to be rediscovered in terms relative to New Areth, and the most gifted Travellers had given their lives to push back the moons from collision with the planet. Still, a few of these mages managed to return alive, with field research which furthered the Foundations' knowledge and increased the overall power of the magi.

Fifty-eight years after the cataclysm, the first war broke out among two neighboring fiefdoms. Fuhrer Sieger of Goethe and General Marduk of Babylon clashed over a deposit of gold just inside of the Babylonian border, extending underground into Goethian territory. The fighting was bloody and long, both sides having been hardened in the wars against orcs dwelling in the jungles nearby. Sieger's forces prevailed against Marduk's in a matter of three months, but sealed their own doom in the process. As they razed Babylon, the orcs and ogres in the surrounding forest massed and stormed Goethe. By the time Sieger's troops had finished their atrocities upon the citizenry of Babylon, they found themselves returning to burnt-out husks where they had once lived, and streets running red with blood. As for Fuhrer Sieger, all that was found of him was his head in the center of the town - orcs believed that by eating the body of their enemy's leader, they could crush the enemy's people forever under their heel. The sight of their homeplace burnt and their citizens dead drove home the horror of their own actions towards the Babylonians. General Schumer, the highest ranking Goethian left alive, lead the Goethians on one last mission, completing the circle of violence with a suicidal attack on the orcen tribe which had razed Goethe. To this day, the ruins of both Goethe and Babylon still stand as mute testimonies against feudal warfare.

The tragedy of Babylon and Goethe sparked unrest among the surrounding fiefs; border skirmishes began to develop between the fiefs trying to claim parts of the now desolate kingdoms. When another war broke out between the neighboring kingdoms of Lagrange and McNamara, the aged half-elven general serving as liason between the Foundations and the fighting academies in Shuma was sickened to the point of decisive action. He railroaded his plan through the council, some say not entirely without the threat of force. In the first application of Traveller magic since the cataclysm, the general sent teams of Shuma's finest swordsmasters through simultaneous portals into the centers of the palaces of both warring kingdoms. Other than a few foolish guards who dared to match swords against the best in the land, there were no casualties as the crack strike groups held the rulers at swordpoint, then vanished seconds later as the Travellers summoned them back. The point was made - Shuma had become a military power capable of precision strikes to destroy the rulers of any kingdom it saw fit. The first order from the new capital was that all warfare was to cease immediately. Above all else, the elder council desired peace - as it was the most conducive atmosphere to the restoration of the power of Old Areth. They were also wise, knowing that their corruptible natures prohibited such pure motives from remaining in perpetuity. Therefore, a joint project was undertaken between the Conjurers' Foundation and the Psionicists' Foundation, weaving a persistent and permanent aura into the meeting room of the Elder Council. This aura was designed to literally leach emotion from its occupants, and infuse a desire to carry out whatever steps were necessary for the good of the world as a whole. Any individual, no matter how evil or tyrannical, sitting in the council chambers would make their decisions in consideration of the world overall, and not their own selfish motivations. With this in place, as well as the law that no edict of the Council not proclaimed from the conference room itself could be held valid, the former kings submitted one by one to new positions as feudal lords.

And so began the dawn of the Third Age of Areth, a time characterized by furtherment of the Foundations' studies and the benevolent rule of the Elder Council.