In the beginning, there was nothing but the boundless expanse of the Astral Plane.
Barren, cold and empty, there was no life to speak of many eons. Then came the first of the Gods, Ikanna the Weaver, Goddess of Fate and Destiny. From the first threads that she spun came Celestain, Goddess of the Astral Plane. Celestian travelled the depths of the Astral Plane and her energy gave birth to fantastic and horrific creatures that to this day are said to exist in the boundaries between worlds. Where Celestian stopped to rest in her travels, it is said that worlds were birthed; vast landscapes that defied the imagination, infused with her power.
When she at last came to the end of her journey, Celestian slept. And from her sleep came Ranbeltor, God of Sleep and Dreams. Alone in the Astral Plane, other than the creatures birthed from Celestians body, Ranbeltor and Celestian gave birth to Iambulus, God of Magic and Knowledge; Laul, God of Secrets and Darkness; Ariante, Goddess of Peace and Gulthia, Goddess of Freedom.
For a while, all was peaceful. Celestian taught her children the secrets of the Astral Plane and they filled the worlds she had created with creatures and wonders. As time passed however, Celestian bleed ever more of her power into the Astral Plane and became a distant guardian, preferring to spend her time exploring the void that had birthed her. And with their father Ranbeltor spending his time in the Realm of Dreams, her children found themselves left to their own devices.
Wishing to create worlds of their own, Iambulus, Laul, Ariante and Gulthia combined their powers to give birth to more gods. Iambulus and Gulthia brought Collanus, God of Valour and Battle into the world. Also joining him was his cruel, twin sister Calleyus, Godess of Tyranny and War. Collanus and Calleyus did what was expected of them and used their power to create and fill more of the worlds in the Astral Plane. What was not expected of them however was to give birth to two more Gods; Handur, God of Strength and Azguraal, God of Blood and Slaughter.
The Astral Plane soon became a more crowded place when Laul and Ariante brought Shallorn, God of Nature into the world. Shallorn soon followed in the steps of the other gods and created his own wife, Sarnea, Goddess of the Woodlands and Farming. They in turn brought forth Antalia, Goddess of Luck and Revelry.
Understandably disappointed in his eldest child’s peaceful ways; Laul took it upon himself to create a child purely of his flesh. The result was Salamthur, God of Disasters and Disease.
After this, strife began to develop among the Gods. In an effort to curb the destruction wrought by Salamthur, Iambulus and Ariante gave birth to Sularion, God of Healing and the Sun. Already in a position of informal authority, Iambulus decreed that Sularion was to be the last of the Gods; much to the chagrin of Laul. However, seeing the destruction wrought by his child, Laul agreed. The Astral Plane and its worlds, while filled with power, magic and wondrous creatures; were delicate. They, much like their mother Celestian, had spent eons pouring power into the various 1000’s of worlds within the Astral Plane and any great amount of conflict would risk tearing it all apart.
Iambulus however, betrayed his brothers, sisters and children. Frustrated at his inability to expand his own knowledge of the universe, Iambulus followed in the path of Laul and created Korthar, God of the Forge to assist him. And the Gods may be many things, but they are not blind.
The conflict that followed between the Gods over this betrayal eclipsed anything that had ever been, or indeed ever will be. Countless worlds were destroyed, creatures slain where they stood as the Gods waged war carelessly through the Astral Plane. The conflict may well have consumed all that their mother had wrought, had she not returned.
Dismayed and enraged at what her children had done, Celestian created what was to be her greatest and final work. Binding her children’s power together and pouring herself into it, Celestian created our world, Ianis, a land larger and more magnificent than any other. The full extent of her great and terrible powers brought to bear, she chained her children to our world and commanded them to care for it. When her children tried to rebel against such an act, they found their powers greatly reduced. For their mother had tied her children’s powers to Ianis, meaning that any more destruction in the Astral Plane would surely result in their own.
Wroth at being restricted in such a way, the Gods fled across the Astral Plane to their respective worlds to lick their wounds. For hundreds of years the universe was relatively silent, the Gods content to exist separately from each other. Soon however they found that their powers were waning. Unable to control their worlds with the ease they once could, the Gods convened on Ianis. It was there that they realized it would be necessary to follow in their mother’s footsteps and once more fill a world with life.
Wanting to protect the sweeping, natural places he had created, Shallorn crafted the Elves and set them to care for the natural places on Ianis.
Understandably bored with what her father had created, Antallia created the Halflings and set them to roam the land, bringing cheer where they travelled.
Her mother Sarnea meanwhile created the Gnomes and her people taught other races how to extract their gifts from the land.
Desiring only to continue to pursue ever finer creations and materials, Korthar took to the great mountains of the north and created the Dwarves, that they might assist him.
And Sularion created Humans, that they might craft mighty cities and be a beacon of his healing power.
The Gods of course found their new children quite unlike that which they had created in the Astral Plane. While the Gods were worshipped as a whole, many found themselves losing and gaining worshippers unlike they had expected. But, on the whole, while the world of Ianis had its dangers, life was peaceful. Until the Younger Gods and Jurdar.
For you see what the Gods had not counted on was that Ianis was a mortal realm. And so when their followers and other creatures began to die, as is the way with mortals, Vichma, Goddess of Death was born. When their followers banded together for safety and comfort, Kurzal, God of Tribes and Unity was born. And when the first cities began to form from humble villages, Iptar, Goddess of Cities and Empires came to be. Small forces on Ianis at first, by the time the Gods realized what had occurred, there was nothing to be done. The world had 3 new Gods.
Distrust between the Gods grew rife as none could believe that the other had not created another God. The final match was lit when Kurzal, desiring a people to call his own, created the orcs, a vicious but loyal race. Ignoring the lessons from the past, war erupted yet again. Ianis was covered in conflict and fire as God once more fought God, using what they had created to war as well. The Second War was to come to a quick conclusion however as from the strife, Jurdar, God of Chaos was born. Jurdar split the land asunder in a frightening crack and laid waste to all around him. Fearing for not only their lives, but the lives of their followers and indeed Ianis itself, the Gods turned from each other, to Jurdar.
Realizing what their in-fighting had done, they combined their powers to seal Jurdar away from Ianis and the rest of the Astral Plane. Jurdar was and is a hungry god however who desires only to consume. Knowing that their presence would only draw him like a moth to flame, the Gods sadly departed Ianis for their homes in the Astral Plane where to this day they reside, watching over us all and shaping the land.