Treaty of Helen

We stand here together with the goal of fostering a peace between our peoples which will last many centuries, and the goal of seeing justice done for the dead. Let those who stand witness to this meeting, and those who read the proclamation yet to come, be bound by Our agreements. In the name of Helen, the Peacemaker, we swear this...
— Excerpt from the Preamble of the 'Treaty of Helen'
  The Treaty of Helen was instrumental in causing the "Wizards' War" to end, and is part of why the Rhyliss Empire today has not expanded beyond the Sanguine River to the east. However, the same treaty forbade the mystics of Myrisic and Zurithan from expanding further west than the final battlefront had stood. Thus the neutral ground in the middle fell to become its own nation under its own authority: 'Helenic'.

Document Structure

Caveats

The central portion of the treaty lie in two particular agreements which represent each side's willingness to compromise. While there are a great deal smaller portions which spell out specific arrangements, these two deserve special mention:

  • The Emperor shall not order any portion of the Imperial Legion across a designated border established largely by the Sanguine River's course. Should any portion of the Imperial Legion cross the border, their lives are forfeit. When the Emperor agreed to this readily, and easily, the mystics refined this clause to add something else. Any authorities answering to the Emperor likewise are included in this, unless they are granted a token which is enchanted to reveal any malicious motives.
  • The eastern mystics are not to cross a line defined by the final battlefront, on the same penalty of execution. There is only one clause which allows this, and it is "to pursue enemies to the peace and safety of both sides agreeing to this Treaty". Scholars note only the Myrisic side is thus given any leeway to cross their border, but as the defenders in the war it was expected they would not push the momentum for fear of a war of annihilation.
  • Many centuries after the Treaty, representatives returned to the same temple grounds to negotiate new terms and conditions, relaxing many of the limitations and recognizing there had been a significant change in the relations between the two powers. In this revision to the Treaty, citizens of the Empire and of the east were specifically listed as being allowed to travel freely through Helenic. These citizens are prevented from exercising any authority from their homelands, though Helenic has since become ruled loosely by various representatives of religious groups.

    Historical Details

    History

    As the Rhyliss Empire expanded eastward, they inevitably ran across a number of arcanists who had been fleeing persecution during the Dark Era. They had founded their own nation, Myrisic, which spread over a vast area with a great many casual practitioners of arcane magic nervous about these men from the west. Initially, there was a meeting between Emperor Rowan Rhyliss and some of the Elders who were the only authority who could negotiate. The Emperor, flush with arrogance from subduing a rebellion in Sanguine, demanded the arcanists swear fealty and cease practice of magic. The Elders were taken aback, and refused to cease practice of magic, though they would discuss fealty with their people. Under this pretense, the Emperor declared war by sending the corpses of the Elders and their retainers back with his demands on a scroll of parchment.

    Over the next decade. the Imperial Legion marched through the fields and forests towards the eastern shore. Any temple or shrine which could not be determined to belong to any "aspects of the Twelve", and was not sufficiently defended, was torn down. Any village found to harbor even one arcanist was put to the torch and the ground salted. The Elders began to lose control of their people as anger mounted, and some arcanists turned to branches of magic which could strike back against the invaders. Records tell of fiery conflagrations which consumed entire squads of Legionnaires, or sudden storms of fierce hail turning battles to a standstill. But the masterstroke came when an arcanist named Zuri unleashed a combination of spells which changed everything.

    Zuri first scouted out the war camp of one of the Legions pressing the advance on the northern front. Utilizing divination magic to pinpoint the exact location of the Legion commander, her next spell caused a column of fire to erupt downwards from the night sky and scour the land to ash. The people, the objects, even the grass was replaced by a smoking circle of ash a hundred feet across. To prove this was not a fluke, and could be repeated, students of hers performed the same task three times to other Legions along the same front.

    Such a show of power could not be denied, and the Emperor was forced to acknowledge the eastern expansion might have been a mistake. Zuri herself attended the meeting, with some Elders who shared her ideals, and made it clear there would be a treaty agreement before she left. Or there would be a crater where the camp now stood. The two met at the site where a temple had once been, the Temple of Helen, an old Goddess who was called "the Peacemaker" by those who followed Her. A two-fold message was left for the Empire: their destruction of older Gods in the pursuit of their own religion was not to be forgotten, and there was indeed a genuine desire for peace.

    Type
    Treaty, Diplomatic

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