Return of Evil
This article will examine the demographic and racial nature of the world of Myria.
By far the most common race seen in Myria, the humans have spread throughout the surface world. Their cities are marvels of the victory of engineering and technology over nature. Human ships cross the oceans, and engines of human invention float through the skies. Adaptable and brave, human settlements can be found almost anywhere in the world, even in regions other races abandoned for being too inhospitable.
Beautiful and ancient, elves are believed to be the oldest race still existing on Myria. Their cities are less architecture and more art, and their skill with music and fine art can steal the breath of even the most uncultured barbarian. However, elves are not truly of this world. Their home is on a separate place of existance, and their cities are built on every portal to their home plane they could find. These portals are well protected, and behind each there lives millions of elves, uncounted years old, ready to defend their homeland. None have ever passed through an elfgate and returned to tell the tale.
At start of the Mages’ War, the elves retreated to their cities and sealed them shut with their magic. Since there were many more elves than those cities could have accomodated, doubtless many retreated from this plane to their own. Even now, two decades later, the elven cities remain sealed, and it is death for any to approach them uninvited. Only the druidic city Felde remains open to outsiders, but even then caution is reccommended.
Because of the divison of the elven race, druid is treated as an alternative favoured class for elves.
It is claimed that some elves, eons ago, chose to shun the surface world and the worship of the elven gods, and descended beneath the earth to worship Lolth, Queen of Spiders. The elves refute this, claiming that these ‘drow’ are in fact not elves at all, but a fiendish creation meant to cause distruption and contention.
The great dwarven delves were sealed when the Mages’ War broke out. The largest of these, Lannettcrag, capital of the dwarves, was under the Landspine mountain range, and remains sealed to outsiders. Many other delves, especially those close to big cities such as Raven and Tomsim, are permitting very limited trade, but already the availablity of magical weapons, armour and items in those cities has tripled.
The roaming, ill-defended caravans of the halfling were decimated by the War, and even now they are a rare sight. It is believed that some entire clans were wiped out, and there were very few survivors from any actual engagement with the Arcane Army.
Rare in Myria even before the Mages’ War, the gnomish race is widely accepted as extinct. The majority of the race sided with their long-time allies, the mages, and revenge attacks destroyed what few failed to join the army.
However, planar travellers confirm that large numbers of gnomes remain on their ancestral plane of Bytopia, and that these gnomes were not only mostly uninterested in the Mages’ War, but have no real interest in recolonising the Material Plane.
There have been half-elves ever since the first human walked up to the first elf and said, “Come here often?” Now there are so many that the community is self-sustaining, and they form practically their own racial group. Indeed, some more militant members refuse the name “half-elf” and instead demand they be called “humelves”. The practice has not been popular.
Half-elves are widely found in larger cities, and make up a surprisingly large proportion of the standing army of the Free City of Raven.
Similarly to half-elves, the largest cities have enough half-orcs to create a sustainable community. Unlike half-elves, most half-orcs drift into crime and gang warfare. The average life expectancy for a half-orc born within ten miles of the Docks of Raven is eighteen.
However, some rise above this sad existance. The most famous half-orc is doubtless General Thrusk, the feared commander-in-chief of the standing army of the Free City of Raven. His intelligence and native wit have earned him the fear of other city-states, and his compassion and ferocious loyalty to his men has earned him their respect and honour. He is regarded as the greatest general the city has ever known, and his example has helped undermine the prejudices against half-orcs not only in Raven but around the world.
There are a number of other intelligent races that inhabit the world of Myria. Chief among them are the orcs and the goblinoids, two races classed as ‘savage humanoids’ that are kept from world domination only due to their intense distrust of each other. Low-level warfare between orcs and hobgoblins is almost constant, and other goblinoids often get involved. This tension has reached such heights that some clerics of Grummush have taught that the extermination of the elves is of a lower priority that the genocide of the goblin races.