|THE DISCIPLES SERIES
|ART BY ME
The Elven Lore I
Part I : The Birth of History
The Highfather was so proud of his first angel, Bethrezen, that he bestowed to him the power of creation. Eager to prove the gift was not wasted, Bethrezen set out to construct the perfect world. He named this world Nevendaar, a sacred word in angelic tongue. When Nevendaar was young and its surface was but a blank canvas for the will of the Gods, Bethrezen urged the others to help him populate it. First, he chose the Lovers, Solonielle and Gallean.
Gallean reached deep into the soil and vast trees began to stretch towards the sky. A reminder, he said, that his love for her overshadowed everything in the world. Solonielle wept, her shining tears falling towards Nevendaar in a rain that would last years; for mortals centuries are but a minute to a God. Oceans soon painted the surface of the world, but they were incomplete. Together the Lovers seeded the world with their people. The trees cracked open and from their hollows emerged the Elves, keepers of the forests. Merfolk were born in the depths of the sea and an elaborate underwater paradise was constructed to pay tribute to their Goddess.
Mighty Wotan then struck the world with his hammer, causing the ground itself to ripple into enormous mountain ranges. He introduced his honorable Dwarves to the surface of Nevendaar, but to his surprise, they began tunneling into the ground.
Bethrezen, eager for children of his own, brought mankind to Nevendaar, as well as the animals to serve them. Men were fascinating to the Gods; their independence was unprecedented, their actions unpredictable. Anything they desired was given to them by their father, and the world became a true paradise. However, worried that mankind needed his guidance, Bethrezen asked his fellow Angels to watch over their progress while he set out to share his creation with the Highfather.
Part II : The Birth of War
The Angels were jealous. While Bethrezen was away, they visited the world of man, and put his existence into perspective. Soon greed gripped the hearts of Bethrezen's children and man began to horde his possessions. waging war on those in the way - including the Elves. The beauty of Nevendaar was insignificant next to the horrors committed by mankind.
The Highfather gazed upon Bethrezen's world with disgust. Was this some sort of mockery? Such an atrocity could not go unpunished, and then he banished Bethrezen to the filthy core of his own world. Unable to avenge his own betrayal, the fallen god created a twisted race of demons to scour the surface of the world, bringing justice to the humans who had ruined it.
Bethrezen's hated fueled his minions, but they waited for mankind to weaken itself. Instead, they focused their attention on the peaceful Elves. The great forests were set ablaze and Gallean's children were forced to flee them. Their path led them into the vast mountain ranges of the Dwarves. Sensing invasion, the mighty Dwarves charged forward with weapons drawn and slaughtered hundreds.
Solonielle and Gallean challenged Wotan. How could he let his Dwarves commit such senseless killing? Gallean demanded that Wotan punished his murderous "half-men" for their treachery. Offended, Wotan plunged his fist deep into the forest god's chest, tore out his heart, and hurled it into the sun. Horrified, Solonielle braved the intense heat to retrieve her husband's heart. Solonielle was severely burned, but she had succeeded. However, it was not enough. Gallean twisted and screamed in pain, but would not wake.
Part III : The Age of Retribution
Solonielle's exposure to her suffering lover drove her mad. No longer was she a keeper of the Elves, she had become Mortis - the fleshless goddess. She began to slaughter whole cities and resurrect them for her undead army. Her first act was to haunt and slay the Dwarven king, for Wotan surely deserved to suffer.
But this was not enough, she needed Gallean by her side. Together, they would make all of Nevendaar answer for their pain. A chance to heal him soon came in the form of a human child tainted by demonic corruption - Uther. With the retrieval of Uther's blood, Gallean was reborn. The blood had given him back his handsome form as well as his noble spirit. He looked upon poor Mortis, his lost lover, and felt pity. She had become a beast; little remained of the soul he once loved. Gallean left Mortis.
Part IV : The Return of Gallean
The godless Elves rejoiced at the return of their father. Overjoyed to see his children still survived, he sent them a gift - his own avatar Lachla'an. Lachla'an would spread a message of peace to unite those races in Nevendaar deemed worthy.
Mortis would not allow it. She arranged Lachla'an's death and brought him back as her own child, a twisted reflection, a Dark Elf. She used Lachla'an to taunt her husband into interfering directly with the ways of mortals, an act forbidden to the gods. His wrath manifested as a corruption of nature itself and it destroyed many people of all races. For but a moment, Gallean had felt the hatred that had corrupted his wife. Appalled by his own actions, he retreated in isolation, as did the Elves.