The Udirkith, or Dwarves as they are most commonly known, were once the greatest sophontic species on all of Solith. The Dwarves originated long before the arrival of Humanity ad\s the third and final of Solith's sophontic children. The Udirkith believed that as the last and greatest of her children, it was their divine right to claim dominion over the land and dominate its peoples. Under the iron rule of Gaul, the Udirkith's prideful arrogance pushed them to conquer the continent as the Udrithi Empire and wage brutal wars in the name of Dwarven supremacy. Today, their once-grand empire has collapsed and has left behind a fractured people battered by generations of war and reviled by sophonts across Solith.
The Udirkith were born centuries after the Jotunkith and Garkith arose on the continent, in an age where nature consumed the once barren lands of Solith. The Udirkith rose to become the greatest of Solith's children, becoming the first sophonts to forge metal on the continent and truly master the arcane arts. In their fortress cities, they churned the earth and bent nature to the whims and wills of the Dwarven people. Their belief in their people's divine right to the land and all it had to offer is what first pushed them to wage war against one another. Within the centuries-long Dwarven Supremacy Wars, the Udirkith of the Moorwald battled upon their most sacred mountain for the right to be crowned as the Lord of all Dwarves. This arena of unprecedented bloodshed gave birth not only to their king but also to the first Udirkith god: Gaul, the Lord of War. With his mighty power and indomitable will, he claimed dominion over all Dwarves and unified them under the banner of the burgeoning Udrithi Empire. Those who would not bend the knee before Gaul's might were slaughtered by his faithful until only 28 loyal clans remained. Gaul forged his people like steel upon an anvil and created a people bound by his principle ideals of unyielding strength and Dwarven pride that persists even to this day. All modern Dwarves descend from at least one of these 28 loyal clans of Gaul, making all Dwarves distantly related to one another.
As the reborn Udirkith conquered the Moorwald, they slaughtered not just the Jotunkith but any creature that dared stand against the greatness of the Dwarves. All were forced to bend in supplication to the Dwarven Warmachine. Together, the unified Udirkith brought the Udrithi Empire up from the frozen wastes to claim dominion over half the continent. They ruled from the frozen fields of the Highwald Expanse to the Garkith's mountain cities in the Throat of the World. Under Gaul's rule, the Udirkith learned to become masters of the natural world, from art to artifice they became unrivaled in their mastery. Their prowess and knowledge over the arcane were so grand that even the very souls and flesh of their enemies became tools for the Udrithi Empire.
Only the War of Smoke & Steel shook the Dwarves' faith in their God-King and his divine children as Humanity proved more than a match for the indomitable Lord of War. As the Dwarven Warmachine came to a screeching halt, so too did their absolute faith in Gaul's divine mission to conquer the continent. For the first time in their recorded history, the Udirkith saw weakness in their God-King's tyrannical rule. Sensing weakness, the prideful Udirkith turned against their gods and sought to turn them into tools as they had so many others. Yet, with Gaul's fall, the divisions between the Udirkith only grew as vast power vacuums opened up in their empire. Thus the Udrithi Empire was doomed to fall with Gaul, and by the end of the next century, the once unified races became forever divided. The loyal citizens of the empire broke away to become the purist Highland Dwarves. In contrast, those that had settled Haven became the enslaved Blackhill Dwarves, while the Salt Dwarves rose to prominence in the seas surrounding the Parched Expanse.
Between 200 and 250 years old.
Between 4 and 5 feet tall.
Around 150 pounds.
Masters of Art & Artifice
All Udirkith are born artisans, with a natural gift for masonry and metalworking. They are inarguably among the greatest craftsmen on the continent and are the minds behind countless technological and magical breakthrough developments. The only trait more common among the Dwarves than their propensity for craftsmanship is their ancestral combat training. Nearly all Udirkith learn to use at least one of their ancestral tools: the ax, the pick, or the hammer as a deadly weapon of war.
The Udirkith Gods
The Udirkith have few remaining gods, having discarded blind faith centuries ago with the fall of Gaul. For millennia the Dwarves have had a clinical view on divinity and believe anyone can attain its diefic powers. Their gods rarely arise out of true faith, often resulting from carefully constructed machinations such as with Shardkith or Gaul and his many children.