Erasmus - Land of Strife
Erasmus, a civilization in decline past its glory days. The races of humans and demi-humans are now struggling to survive while the races of evil humanoids slowly advance on their dwindling borders. The decline started approximately 1000 years ago. King Romis, was determined to cross Hell’s Pass to the west and end the Dark Elf threat once and for all. He gathered an army, mostly of Humans, but Dwarves, Halflings, Elves and Gnomes contributed as well. He crossed Hell’s Pass into the mountainous region and waged war with the Dark Elves, penetrating their lairs and rooting them out. Many lives were lost on both sides, but the Army under King Romis was victorious. The Dark Elf Kingdom was looted and burned. Survivors were generally killed if male and many of the females were raped. King Romis called a retreat upon what he believed was complete victory and set guard upon Hell’s Pass, the only known entry point from the lands of the Dark Elves. It was believed that Humans and Dark Elves could not breed, but in time, the Dark Elf women gave birth to half-Dark Elven bastards. Normally, these abominations would have been destroyed by the Dark Elves, but with their population decimated from years of war, they accepted them into the Clans as they needed them to rebuild the Kingdom. As years past and the Dark Elves grew in their power and the Gray One’s, for this is what they came to be known, began to breed amongst themselves, a subtle power struggle occurred and the Gray Ones and the Dark Elves split their ways. The Gray Ones had no aversion to light and they left to build cities in the forested lands west of Hell’s Pass. And they grew in power and hatred. They hated their Human ancestors for what they had done in their battle lust. They hated their own existence. But they had a coping mechanism and that was to destroy everything that was not as discontent as they were. When they rose in power, enough to form a military, they too began to throw themselves upon the Guards of Hell’s Pass. They maintained a weak truce with the Dark Elves as they respected their evil ways and owed them a small debt for not destroying their kind at birth.
The brave warriors have guarded Hell’s Pass ever since, shedding blood and sweat and lives for the last 1000 years defending what remains of the civilized lands. With much of the resources of the Humans and Demi-Humans going to the defense of Hell’s Pass, their other borders began to weaken. As they were less able to wage war on the evil humanoids already east of Hell’s Pass, they too gained in power. Borders were overrun, towns destroyed, populations dwindled down. Fortunately, the evil humanoids war amongst themselves, but their boundaries creep ever further into formally Human, Elf, Halfling and Dwarven Lands.