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Oblivion Hour

It was a visage of the past. Of beautiful cities and realms as vast as oceans. Then came the scream. A million voices as one. A weight crushing my soul...and all I could see then was fire and death.
— Master Gerion
  It was the moment that ended the ancient world. A disaster that changed everything. The event that would become synonymous with death and destruction. But also the moment the modern world was born in. No matter where or what you are, the life you know exists only because of the Oblivion Hour.  

The Age of Wrath

  In ages past, the world was a far different place. No ocean to divide the world, no walls of stone to pierce the skies, no Hegemony to crush the world under its iron feet and no Ferans to fill it with blood and faith. This was the time of five grand realms, more prosperous and powerful than anything seen in the past 5000 years. It was a veritable golden age. Then came the Age of Wrath. The war to end all wars. A time of bloodshet that lasted nearly five centuries and saw mankind tear itself apart with weapons of nightmarish power.  


  But they all paled in comparison to what would occur at the height of carnage. For a second, it seemed that the entire world had frozen, silence reigning across land and sea. Then a soul-shattering thunder. The earth was torn asunder as a mighty torrent of flame rushed into the sky, a shrieking maelstrom of red and black. Day became night, the air turned putrid and poisonous and ash descended from the heavens, covering all things living and dead in a shroud of grey.   How long exactly the cataclysm lasted is not known. Any thought some could have had about such matters drowned out by the howling, screaming earth, as it was reshapen. Darkness fell upon the land, from west to east, north to south, the only sight the roaring pillar of light and flame, in all its awe-inspiring, soul tearing, terrifying glory. Eventually, it vanished as quickly as it had appeared and left the world in silent darkness.  

A World Reborn

Tyanis the Broken

Oblivion had left the earth as a burned husk. In the centre, a titanic scar thousands of kilometres long and as deep as the tallest mountains are high. Where once there were fertile plains stretching endlessly under the sky, there now rose two gargantuan walls of blackened stone, their peaks beyond even the furthest clouds. In time, the surviving humans would name them. Great Divide, Walls of Dusk and Dawn, Scetia the west, Tyanis Wound, Vardania the north and Anidara the south. All modern Man knows was born in the death throes of the primordial age.
Aenis the Hidden

Few would have been able to care about such things back then, however. Far above the ruined world, dark clouds were covering the skies blocking out most of the sun's light. The Time of Twilight had begun. Seven centuries of darkness followed, where the sun rose covered in blood and the moon tainted the earth with its corpse-green light. Slowly but surely, man-made due with the shadows and began to reclaim the cooling world. Nature recovered as well. Ashen wastes grew with life again and calming winds started to thin the dark clouds in the skies.
  By the time that the last clouds dispersed, humanity hadn't seen a true dawn in generations. And when the people first woke to golden rays descending from a clear ocean of blue, they were awestruck. Feeling that a new era was at hand, they named it Dawn Age.   With the terror of the Oblivion Hour fast becoming but a barely whispered memory, the people on the Divide were ready to start anew. History as we know it began to unfold and while none of the great civilizations of modern times have quite managed to reach past glories, there can be no doubt that mankind did not only survive but thrive.  
Perhaps it is something we truly need. A reminder that we are but ants under the sky. That we aren't invincible. And that maybe...we shouldn't try to kill one another when all it takes is a whim of nature for us to vanish completely.
— Baran Aravastra
Above: The Odium Eye. Last work of Gerion the Raving Dreamer who is said to have painted parts of it with his very own blood.   Remnants of a Past Age   Of the old world, only a few things survived. Ruins and artefacts, words spoken and written, the ancestors of many of the great tribes of the modern world. By far the most notable survivor is without a doubt the Eternal Empire.   Also known as Rhomeia, it was one of the great empires that tore the world apart during the Age of Wrath. Its ancient heartland is now a chain of islands of the coast of Scetia.   While greatly diminished, the spark of primordial power is still alive within the Empire. Its people are as proud as ever and, its armies wield weapons of awesome power. Almost ten thousand years after its founding, the Rhomeian Empire endures.   Gerion the Raving Dreamer (1125-1157 DA)   Often cited as the greatest painter to ever live, Gerion Alaris is perhaps best described as brilliantly mad. Plagued by visceral dreams, he would craft worlds of incredible beauty, removed from both the bounds of time and nature.   In his final years, he seemed more and more affected by the visions he was receiving. His health, both of mind and body, declined sharply and, he could often be found wandering the halls of his manor by night, muttering about the strangest things.   One cold night in late 1157 DA, his house was shaken by his screams. Gerion, mad with terror and pain, had locked himself in his studio and none of his friends or relatives could reach him. When they finally broke the door nearly a week later, all they found was his corpse lying below his last masterpiece.  

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Cover image: by Chris Cold


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2 Feb, 2019 14:59

I have really enjoyed this read. The mysterious veil surrounding the event, how unthinkably powerful was the is all very well portrayed, I enjoyed reading it and it made me curious. Congratulations for the article

Elias Redclaw
2 Feb, 2019 16:38

Beautiful article! I was just simply struck with how you managed to evoke my emotions with this article and how you managed to portray the events of the Oblivion hour. The description and sidebar content was extremely surreal, More so than most of the worlds i have seen on world anvil. The beginning quote immediately hooks the reader in with tis surrealness and makes the reader interested to read more about the article. Your skills in describing an apocalyptic situation is unprecedented as seen in this article and this allows for an incredibly detailed , interested and memorable article to read. The sidebar content is also very useful and clears up a lot of questions that otherwise would have been left unanswered. I am definitely keen to see more of this world and what comes next. Congratulations and keep up the great work!

12 Jun, 2021 20:22

I'm trying to imagine seven centuries of darkness. The idea of living my whole life in the dark is awful. Those poor people that lived through that.

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
Sage Timepool
Garrett Grace Lewis
17 Aug, 2021 21:39

Absolutely delivered! Fantastic!