Avalon, the Ancient Isle
History of Avalon

conquered the entire continent, taking control from savage hoards of creatures and demons that ran wild over the land.  When
conquered the entire continent, taking control from savage hoards of creatures and demons that ran wild over the land.  When
the wars ended, the land was divided into three equal kingdoms; Northwind the kingdom of man, Dai-Rynn the kingdom of
elves, and Dormack the kingdom of dwarves.  Northwind was the northernmost kingdom and the most exposed to attack from
civilized nations across the ocean.  Its terrain is a mix of deserts, grasslands, and small foothills.  Dai-Rynn laid west, protected
civilized nations across the ocean.  Its terrain is a mix of deserts, grasslands, and small foothills.  Dai-Rynn laid west, protected
from all other enemy invaders by the lands of Northwind to the north and Dormack to the east.  Its terrain is very conducive to
elven living and defense, with nearly impenetrable forests, many natural streams, and temperate weather.  Dormack, the
dwarven kingdom, is the wildest of the three lands being comprised of mountains, forests , and a volcano chain running along
the ocean border to the south.
the ocean border to the south.

The three kings, Dormack, Dai-Rynn, and Edward, convened and chose Edward to rule as the high king.  He was a valiant
soldier whose honor was beyond reproach and was much beloved by his human subjects and respected by both dwarves
and elves.  He ruled for twenty years of prosperity until his death.  He was so involved with the protection and development of
his new kingdom that he only recently wed and had no valid heir to the throne.  His son was only five years old, so Dai-Rynn
and Dormack met to decide the future of the high kingdom. With much different life spans, it was thought that a longer tenured
High King would benefit the three kingdoms.  Since elves are prone to wanderlust and have no real desire to rule, Dai-Rynn
and Dormack decided that the dwarf would ascend to the high throne.  King Dormack concentrated on conquest and wealth.  
He conscripted massive armies and armed them with the weapons forged in Dormack mines.  He stripped his mines of gold in
order to pay for his wars, digging and digging until he upset the balance between the mountain and the earth, where ancient
things awoke.  Dragons, demons, and much worse spilled out of the mountain ranges into Avalon from the south.  The initial
onslaught killed thousands of dwarven warriors and crippled their armies.  Unable to quell the invasion from within, the
dwarves reached out to the other kingdoms for aid. Elven armies massed in the west and the human war machine assembled
in the north.  Together, they were able to retake Dormack and fend off the monstrous invaders.  The High Kingdom of Avalon
won the day, but a hundred thousand innocents were killed and King Dormack was challenged.

A challenge is an integral piece of the Avalon court system.  To determine matters of disagreement between titled land owners,
any landed individual that is wronged can issue a challenge against another.   The challenge must be accepted either by the
challenged, or by a group of his peers. Because Dormack was High King, the only other living member of the Trifecta,
Dai-Rynn Goldleaf, could make a challenge against him.  Under the law, the challengers meet on the field of battle in a
one-to-one contest of skill and strength.  The battle does not require that one of the combatants die, but most of the time one
of them does.  The two contestants can fight the battle themselves (any personal items may be used, buy you must prove that
they have been with you for more than 12 moons...no "gearing up") or designate a champion who has sworn an oath of fealty
to the landed noble.  Dormack was a fierce warrior and knew he could best Dai-Rynn in combat.  The elf knew this as well and
instead chose a wizard named Anarthus to champion him.  The battle was quick and Dormack never laid an axe on the wizard.
 The High King was defeated.

Under the laws of challenge, the winner is given all rights to the lands of the defeated.  Now Dai-Rynn ruled both kingdoms.  
Again, it was thought that the wise and long life of an elf king would benefit the young kingdom and give it the stability it had
lacked under Edward and Dormack.  Dai-Rynn's fist action was to restore Jode Dormack's heir, Drunath, to the throne of the
dwarf kingdom.  The son of Edward Northwind, Edward II, was now thirty and was coroneted as king of Northwind on the
same day.  Dai-Rynn moved his capital to the wooded kingdom of his cousin, King Sareth Silverbow.  The land was situated
far to the south and away from most of the goings on of the other two kingdoms.  After a year on the throne, Dai-Rynn decided
to eliminate the boundaries of Northwind, Dormack, and Dai-Rynn, Ruling Avalon as a single kingdom.  The writ ended the
royal lines of Drunath and Edward II, making them kings without kingdoms and politically unable to disagree with the Elf
King's decrees.

After the dissolution of the three kingdoms, the cooperation between humans, dwarves, and elves began to fall apart.  The
dwarves believed that Dormack was defeated through treachery and refused many of the Elf King's orders for smithing and
construction.  The failure of Jode Dormack's reign was eventually forgotten and the nation began to spread that dwarves, not
elves, should be the favored race of Avalon.  The humans also turned against their elf king, believing that Edward Northwind's
birthright had been stolen by the pointy ears.  Without aid form men or dwarves, the race of elves was forced to become a
police force, quelling rebellions and unrest throughout the land.  This structured way of life ran contrary to everything that an
elf believes, and support for Dai-Rynn began to suffer even from within his own people.

Dai-Rynn's chaotic rule lasted 170 years.  During this time, generations of humans were born that did not know any limits or
boundaries.  Edward II had move to the center of Northwind and ruled as the unofficial king, but when he was in his fiftieth
year, he was poisoned with such a deadly substance that even the most powerful healers could not save him.  After his death,
the lands formerly known as Northwind were constantly at war with each other and the fighting was so far from the King that it
was allowed to rage unchecked.  Dwarves had forgotten why they agreed to this cooperation in the first place and began an
arms race with the elves that would lead to a climactic military face-off for control of the continent.  It was only Jode Dormack,
the former high king still in hiding but also still very politically active, who staved off open war against the elves.  In his late
years, he regained faith in what he, Edward, and Dai-Rynn had built 200 years before.  He'd realized that he'd been wrong to
use that cooperation to accumulate personal power.  He also knew that his friend was now lost in his own world, too isolated
to rule the continent.  With an elite contingent of dwarves led by Drunath, Dormack left hiding to seek out an unexpected ally.  
He searched for twenty years until they him...the wizard Anarthus.

The mage appeared at the court of his one time liege and invoked a challenge.  The Elf King told him that such laws were
barbaric and he had outlawed them two centuries ago.  The wizard told him that he must honor the challenge out of a debt to
his sponsor, at which time the elderly Dormack appeared.  In a moment of clarity, Dai-Rynn realized all that was wrong with his
leadership.  He acquiesced to the challenge and decided to fight the battle himself.  In front of a crowd of nobles and citizens,
the King threw down his bow and offered his exposed neck to the wizard.  Anarthus placed a hand on the king's head and
refused to kill him, as he had done 200 years prior when he defeated Dormack.  Without a single spell or blow, Avalon was
without a ruler and the land quickly descended into chaos.  Dormack died of extreme old age shortly after th challenge.  After
his disgrace, King Dai-Rynn sailed alone to the undying lands of the elves.  In the annals of Avalon, both names are still held in
high honor and when the three kingdoms were restored, the original names were upheld as they were when they were first
established by the famous Trifecta.  Their reigns were remembered for their success and the details of failures have been
omitted from scrolls, with only vague writings of conflict in their place.

It took many years to quell the unrest that the elf-king had created with his chaotic view of law.  250 years after the first one, an
army of humans, dwarves, and elves united to the cause and after many years of war, restored the three kingdoms under the
names of their founders.  One king controlling such a varied and expansive land was too much expectation for just one being.  
Drunath took his place as king of Dormack and Dai-Rynn's cousin, Sareth, took control of the elf lands of Dai-Rynn.  The
human armies were led by a valiant knight named William McLeod.  During Dai-Rynn's rule, he'd organized a large army of
peasants to defend their homes versus creatures in the night and raiders from across the sea.  He even sailed to the massive
island lying to the east of Avalon, conquering it and moving his people to its fertile shores away from the chaos that ruled the
mainland.  They were impressed with the wisdom, independence, and the willingness to move mountains for the safety and
prosperity of his people that McLeod had shown and although he was not of noble birth, he was their choice to rule
Northwind.  The other rulers demanded an open election among all the kings and not just the dwarf and elf.  McLeod was
summoned to a council of the human rulers to determine a king where he was betrayed and killed.  His betrayer was never
discovered.  A king named Bruce who claimed to be of the Northwind bloodline was chosen to be king and ascended to the
throne.  His aide de camp, a loyal barbarian named Amish, was given the newly recognized kingdom of Sterling, the island that
William McLeod had settled.

One benefit of the elf's rule was that a time system was put into place that began time at the birth of Avalon.  All events prior
were known as B.A. (in basic, Before Avalon).   Bruce Northwind died without an heir, and King Amish had only taken the
throne in memory of William.  The next man in line was a barbarian king named Stephen who renamed the kingdom after
himself.  The high throne was still empty.  Many of the bloodthirsty rulers that had challenged McLeod's rule had been
overthrown during Bruce's reign, so another council of kings was assembled.  The various kings of Northwind decided that
the McLeod bloodline deserved to rule Northwind.  Although it was known that the bloodline continued, the McLeod heir
stayed in hiding, refusing to trust the council of kings.  The remaining nobles put together an electorate to choose the high
king.  It was hoped that with an electorate, cooler heads would prevail even in times of chaos.  The kings of Dormack and
Dai-Rynn saw the wisdom of this and adopted the same format for choosing a ruler for their lands.  In time, all three of the high
kings were human and the names of the lesser kingdoms changed through war and politics.  The high kingdoms remain
unchanged, even 2,000 years afterwards.
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