The Tales Of Humen
Long and long ago men were little more than beasts of the jungle and forest. Great lizards and dragon-kind ruled with great magics and elder gods and men were food and sport.
Then did the She who is the world rise up against them and say "Lo! Thy magic shall be thy death!" Then did the coldblooded ones learn to fear magic, for the simplest incantation could bring the purging fire. This was the end of the First Age, The Age of Lizards. Even now, the cold-bloods shun magic and gods and are a scattered barbarian race.
When their great cities of stone and odd carvings of strange beast fell into ruin, then did the first men emerge from the jungles and forests and wise did they grow from the knowledge left by dragon-kind. These men are the beautiful people, the elven-kind and have grown away from us, for we too emerged from the darkness of beasts and began to build, though we avoided magic as plague.
The beautiful people waxed great and suffered their lesser brothers less and less until there came great war. The elven-kind still remember that war in their histories and they say another came then, the Star-lords from the abyss. there is some legends that say the Star-lords came later and that the war was ended by wild magics of the elves in the pride of their mastery. However it was ended, the end of that war was Moonfall. For before that there were seventeen moons, great and small, where now there are only two. The moons fell upon the great cities and their glass towers and soaring arches and only the strong stone houses and deep delvings of men survived. This was the end of the Second Age, the First Age of Elves.
Next came the Wild Age, a wild, dangerous time when all races fought to live. Seas boiled and mountains fell, old gods died and new ones came into being, raw and powerful. When the smothering clouds cleared and the glaciers melted, the world had been reshaped. the land became a realm of circles great and small, the rims high and jagged. Where the greatest circles met was standing the awesome height of Needlespire that some sages place over five kilometers in height, a raw bone of the world thrust into the air. Some sages say that Needlespire is the center of the world and we all revolve in endless circles around it. Of all the races to pass living through the Wild Age, one race of men, those who delved deep and escaped the winter and the rains of fire, emerged strong and stern. These are the people of stone, dwarven-kind who, like the elven-kind, have grown away from us.
The dwarves of the Fourth Age demanded little from other races, save that they gave tribute of material and labor and did not mix with the people of stone. The dwarves grew great and learned as they delved not only stone, but the lore of elves and dragon. But, as all had before, they delved too deep and were destroyed from within. Little is known how or why, save that they withdrew to their delvings and holts and have little trust in active magic since, preferring the more stable magics of Rune and Gem.
The First Age of Men followed as we finally became free enough to pursue our own path, with no masters or predators to hound us. We know many things of that time. We built great towers akin to the glass towers of the beautiful people, but strong in stone like the dwarves. We mastered active magics as well as the Runic forms. We pursued the secrets of life itself. That much we know. But even the elves have no record of how that age ended, save that the air grew poisonous and the earth shook to great balls of fire, and Demons entered the world.
After a time the elven came out of their lost city of Elfheart and began the Working, the great project to restore the power of life to the world, and drive out the demons. It took an age to do, and exhausted even the elven. Ten thousand years it took, but forests again covered the hills and green grass the plains. The beautiful people put Guardians in the world then, to prevent the Death of Tek Nolgi from happening again. And after letting slip their Guardians they retreated again to Elfheart and are a shy retiring people to this day.
For a time, the dwarves again ruled, then a new race, halfings, the younger people, defeated them, not by warfare but with their merchants, and Halflings ruled a wide world with an empire of gold and gems. But men learn as always, and we can compete with the best of each race. We can equal an elven mage. We can fight like a dwarven warrior. And we can haggle like a halfling merchant.
We share the Continent of Man with many races, dwarves, elves, halflings, centaurs, drakken, orcs, goblins. But men rule the continent and have for two millennium. We have learned from the past and will soon rule the world, in peace, yet with might if needed. With magic, though excess will be avoided. With trade, though we will not grow dependent.
Now is the time of Humen.
The Tales Of Humen