Lore: Mathosian Civil War
From the War Journal of Aedraxis Mathos
On this day we, Aedraxis Mathos I of unbroken lineage, undertook the siege of Port Scion, jewel of our empire and home of our royal brother Zareph. His city is rich beyond measure, yet Zareph has refused to fund imperial plans for expansion, plotting instead to supplant our rightful rule. Though arrogant, he is nonetheless our brother. Mathosians! When you read this to your children, and they to theirs, know that your king watched with heavy heart the arc of catapult stones and Mage-fire that tore down the walls of his brother’s house.
Port Scion is ours, and yet we have no joy of her. Zareph has fled, taking most of his nobles, his army, every able-bodied citizen, and somehow, all the riches of the city! He left only the citizens too weak to travel (and not even all of those!) and the city in the care of his honor guard, two hundred men who managed, through trickery and spite, to hold Port Scion for three weeks under heavy assault.
Inquiring by the most insistent means, I learned that Zareph had anticipated my wrath. Over some months, he daily sent scores of people out of the city, disguised as travelers. This proves Zareph’s planned betrayal.
I had every nobleman’s wife remaining in Port Scion beheaded. Let no crooked lineage bear issue!
At last, the gold! One of my dragon knights caught a soldier stooping to an icon of Thedeor and noticed a trick panel on the idol’s base. The panel opened to a secret room containing enormous riches, though only a quarter of Port Scion’s treasure. We emptied the room and left the worshipful soldier in exchange, there to contemplate the gods.
Having taken most of the funds, Zareph has robbed his king of much-needed resources. With peasants and merchants alike withholding our due and reasonable taxes, coffers remain low. Still, this is a much-needed boost. We have hired southern mercenaries to harry Zareph’s outlaws and commissioned our old tutor Orphiel to build Ethian war machines. These shall lay him low, and then Orphiel will open the planes themselves to be conquered by a united Mathosia. Zareph could have marched into these other worlds behind me. Now he will go before me, his skull atop my banner.
Accursed, blasted, filthy Kalmar! My mercenaries and machines had finally cornered Zareph in the castle of my dear murdered friend, Ulfrid of Gloamwood. As my men scaled the battlements, who should charge my bodyguards but Greatsword-bloody-Cyril himself! He tossed my knight’s head onto the battlements to show Zareph’s forces the nature of my minions and then tried to assassinate his king! I gave ground- strategically, of course! At last, to expedite my victory, I focused my power on my men, and they set down the burdens of flesh and life, becoming a wave of rattling bones that assaulted Zareph and distracted Cyril. Satisfied with impending victory, I departed to join my lovely Alsbeth and her councilors.
How can this be? Zareph and Cyril defeated my undead and marched to Silverwood, where they met a contingent of High Elves led by the harlot Shyla. Borrin of the Dwarves has also joined them, offering the smithcraft his people have denied my forces. Even my dotard father’s black-clad by-blow Corwin has managed to stop weeping over the granitewoods I harvested for my war effort to join the rebels. As I write, they march on my position at Ardenburgh.
Oh, but they will find more than they bargained for. For centuries the eldest son of the Mathosian king has ruled Telara, and for eternity I shall rule all creation. Beyond my legions upon legions of walking dead, beyond my own sorcerous prowess, I have had that narcissistic fool Orphiel build a machine to open the planes. One in particular, where the rest of me resides.
For I am not yet whole, have never been whole all my life. I shall tear apart the sky, and my other half shall join with me. Think of it! I am the promised half of Him who is the most vast and ultimate of beings. Already, I am His equal.
I think I shall finally return to the proper, Royal We…