Alara: Homostin’s Passage

Well, I’m done with the Wastes. So I figured I’d do something of a slightly different feel today. I’m going to expand a bit more on the world of Alara. This time, I’m going to do it in the form of a passage of a great scholar of Alara: Homostin of Wyrmspire, Formerly of Asernaiar. Today’s entry will also be a little shorter than normal, but that’s okay because there’s going to be a lot of information in it.

After this, I think I’m going to flush out Wyrmspire a bit more. It’s the most important city of the setting, after all. Maybe I’ll make a map of it. I already have several ideas for some interesting characters.

Well, let’s get going, eh?

This is to be the introductory passage of the Second Edition of the Chronicles of Alara. I write that this is the second edition because the first was recently lost. My home city, Asernaiar, was set upon by the Amen-Kathar, vicious beasts from the unmapped marshes beyond our city. In the attack, the great Library at Asernaiar was taken. My apprentices and I barely escaped with our lives, much less any volumes of the great Chronicles I had thus far penned.

So I begin anew. I start this second edition with a far greater knowledge of Alara than that I possessed four centuries ago, when I began my first edition. I hope that this knowledge will improve this second edition greatly. I also hope that somebody recovers the first edition soon, because not even elves are immortal and I was only halfway through that one. Also, my apprentices are all nincompoops.

Alara is a massive world. Our knowledge of it is incomplete, at best. The best known continent, the one upon which the Civilized Lands rest, is known as Aulind. Other known continents include Norgenar, Luinthras, Gúlind, Azshana, and Aul. Very little is known about many of these, so it is entirely possible that some of them could be the same continent, or not exist at all.

Aulind is quite large. Civilization on Aulind is concentrated in the Civilized Lands, a small portion in the southeast. Uncivilized areas of Aulind are far larger, and everpresent. To the west of the Civilized Lands lies the forest of Requiem. To the north of the Civilized Lands lies the Wastes, dark and barren homeland of undead horrors. Beyond the Wastes lie the Ebenian Plains and the Omarra Desert. Of the lands beyond that, very little is known. A place called Swelterholm lies somewhere, far to the north, but has only been visited by several explorers.

Norgenar is the continent, other than Aulind, about which most is known. It is the only one of the other continents that I have seen with my own eyes. It lies south of Aulind, and is taken up almost entirely by ice and snow. Wandering this tundra are savage men, ice dwarves, and tusked, hairy beastmen with odd elongated noses. The Alliance has one outpost on Norgenar, known as Arrath. From there, we trade with the ice dwarves, who are at least semi-friendly. The men of the tundra, however, are entirely bestial. Any attempt at communication with them is entirely useless.

Luinthras is a continent of which very little is known. Eight-hundred and twenty-three years ago, ships came from across the cloudsea. They claimed they came from Luinthras, a continent of advanced civilization and high standards. The influence of these foreigners is the reason the Civilized Lands are so far ahead of the rest of Aulind in terms of society. Even our language was entirely changed; modern-day common is made up of far more Luinthran than it is Old Common. Then, one day, roughly a century after the first ships arrived, they ceased coming. We lost contact with Luinthras, and it has not been reestablished since. No one knows if it even still exists.

Gúlind is a mysterious continent. The only records we have of it are those taken by the famous explorer, Hendrick Alantra, over a century ago. From what he said, Gúlind was a sweltering land, full of great, dragon-like beasts. There were no humans or elves in this land, but men resembling lizards, who rode the great beasts previously mentioned. The landscape was dotted with mountains of fire and steaming springs. Unfortunately, when Hendrick attempted to return to Gúlind, his entire exploratory fleet was lost, and all that was recovered was a spar from his flagship, the Discovery. No one has found Gúlind since.

Azshana is even more mysterious than the rest of the unknown continents. It is regularly found by ships sailing to or from the outer islands of Aulind, but never stays in the same place. Its inhabitants are said to be giant tortoises, who for some reason possess both the ability to speak and considerable magical prowess. It is possible that it is entirely mythical, and the sailors that corroborate the story (which was originally, in all likelihood, created by some drunk) are merely searching for attention. I know that I have never seen it myself. Of course, this would give need to some other explanation for the various magical artifacts brought back by said sailors. It is a mystery.

Aul is a purely theoretical continent, created by the Astrological Society to serve as a hypothetical center point for the rotations of the sun and moon. I have my doubts about both its existence and the mental stability of most of the members of the Astrological Society.

~Homostin, Chronicler of Wyrmspire, Fourth Day of the Waxing Hunter’s Moon, 823 A.F.

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2 Comments

  1. pieboy said,

    September 17, 2007 at 9:23 pm

    Please, please, don’t tell me you have the obsessive devotion to detail ALL of those continents.

  2. tuskedchimp said,

    September 17, 2007 at 9:31 pm

    …hehe. Maybe I don’t have them in obsessive detail YET, but I know exactly what I’m going to do with every one.


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