In the Shadow of the Sea
THE ORIGIN OF THE RACES
The Divine Kulthas tell of the origin of the world, born from the flesh of the deceiver Anatsun, and the gods that forged the good in the world as well as the gods that were born of it.
The Elder Gods, the oldest of the divine beings, were the first to find the wretch of a world Anatsun had created, and used their divinity to form it into something less wicked and corrupt than what they had found. They destroyed the Old Powers, the first beings to inhabit the world, and breathed divine life into the earth and the seas. Thus the first generation of the Earthgods were born, beings made purely of the world’s flesh and the breath of divinity. The Elder Gods then made the first races of the world—creatures born of magic and the aethyr of existence fused. The first races ruled for tens of thousands of years before they began to decline. As the Elder Gods grew more distant, the first races became more corrupted in both blood and mentality, and their once pure bloodlines became tainted with the influence of demons, devils, otherworldly beings and worse.
Eventually the Earthgods, tired and spiteful of ruling a world of such disdainful and vile beings as the first races’ nefarious descendents, began the process to forge a new era and dynasty upon the earth. They chose Aul and Thea, the last pure blooded members of an ancient and now-forgotten race, to bear the earth’s children, ushering a new era upon the world that would bring peace and balance to all existence.
The gods of the Earth approached Aul and Thea, and told them of the purpose the gods had devised for them. Thea and her husband were told that the gods would flood the earth, and they were to build a boat for themselves and their children, and that within four years the flood would subside, and they and their offspring would find a new land in the west were they could thrive. On this land, they were told, the greatest kingdoms and empires the world would ever know would be forged, and their children would serve as the first kings and emperors whose lines and rule would last until the end of existence. But the gods warned of one thing that must occur; during the flood Thea would become pregnant with seven children, and the first two of the seven must be thrown to the sea as sacrifice, lest the prophecy would never come to pass, and the world would fall into chaos worse that it had ever known. Also, the Gods warned, the children of Aul must never fight amongst themselves, or all the world would be undone.
Thea and her husband built their boat and sailed west, as the Gods commanded. And indeed, the world did flood, as the gods had predicted. But when Thea grew swollen and pregnant with children as the gods had told her, she could not stand to have her children thrown into the ocean, and though the first was sacrificed, the second was spared, and the gods’ warning were not heeded.
Despite their breaking the orders of the gods, Aul, Thea and their children landed safely in the new western lands, and found a dense and untamed wilderness of ancient secrets, ruins and the scattered remains of the old races. The children of Aul and Thea spread across the landscape and founded their empires, though the shadow of prophecy has forever remained.