Introduction to Varia
Varia is a major landmass in the world of Zentrem. A sprawling continent, its denizens seem constantly embroiled in political squabbles and warring. With magic present nearly everywhere on the continent, native Varians contend with more than just mortal issues. However, such occurrences hardly break the mold of Varia's ancient, conflict-ridden history.
GeographyNear continuous tracts of land comprise the bulk of Varia’s wide expanse. The Kor Mountain Ranges make up the frigid and hostile north of the continent as an amalgamation of several mountain chains. Most of Central Varia is covered in woodlands and rolling hills, altered only by the march of war and civilization. In Southern Varia, the tropical deserts of Grandia span across the central areas of the coastline. Then, they give way to more temperate climates of the Hanalian and Javalina coasts, to the west and east respectively.
Politics & WarIn the year 3498 of the Third Era (3E), House Rysmarck of the kingdom of Avon has maintained their attempt at conquest and empire for over twenty years. Their attempts mark only a continuation of a belligerent trend present among the great powers of the Era. The Rysmarcks' exploits have bent swathes of Central Varia and beyond under their control. However, the major noble houses of the surrounding areas (most notably the Houses of Buillon, Daramond, Gaventon, Leitritter, and Vicezzo) provide resistance, or assistance, to the Rysmarckian Conquests. These powerful factions' efforts serve to perpetuate the conflict, engrossing the lands that surround Avon in a state of constant war. Yet, even the fight to control Varia does not stop other ambitious smaller factions and would-be rulers from expanding heir territories while the great powers face off.
The ScourgeThe ancient threat of the Corruption originated well over five thousand years ago and spawned the hordes of vile creatures collectively known as the Scourge. This phenomenon brought about the fall of Varia’s great civilizations during the First Era. Meanwhile, the continent’s surviving denizens were pushed to near extinction as they struggled during the War of the Scourge. By the powers of the god king Avalon and other legendary heroes, the Varian Coalition banished the Corruption, sparing the continent from the gruesome fate of consumption by the Scourge.
This reprieve from the Scourge ushered in the age of reconstruction during the Second Era. However, by the dawn of the Third Era, mortals once again grew ambitious and began turning against one another. Times of war and strife proved ample feeding grounds for the Corruption’s resurgence. Scourge began to occasionally reappear, exacerbating the already present threats to humanoid kind. Yet, the efforts of the holy warriors of the Order of Avalon—and others who opposed the return of the Scourge—stymied their escalation before they could reach their most devastating levels.
By the year 3598 3E, the Scourge once again stirred. Cults and shadowy figures reinvigorated the consuming force's presence on Varia. In the great city of Curieux, the death of the Grand Magister of the Arcane Society and an attack of terrorism by the hands of such individuals proved the threat's very tangible return.
Religion & GodsDuring the First Era, gods in their full forms purportedly tread upon the continent. Their imprints on the world continued well into the War of the Scourge where they aided the mortal civilizations of Varia to overcome the consuming threat. They bestowed their powers to holy men and champions, who would come to represent their will upon the world. Among the great miracles of the War of the Scourge was the ascension of King Avalon of Avon to godhood, turning the tides utterly into humanity's triumph. In the following Eras, the explicit appearance of deities has essentially been non-existent; though, the denizens of Varia know they still exist and watch through the mortal conduits who wield their powers.
Varia is a High Fantasy setting at heart, as with most of Zentrem. Magic and monsters are a common sight within the continent. Varia's denizens are powerful, some with the ability to warp reality itself, though their enemies may hold as much capability, if not more. Times of conflict provide a ripe opportunity for heroes and otherwise great individuals to rise and make their marks on history. Societies and cultures within the continent have even been based on the exploits of such legendary figures. However, the image of a grittier and more unforgiving reality for those who number the common folk remain.
Hope and Heroism In tumultuous times, individuals with desires to do good and the conviction to act on them shine the brightest. These people may be endowed with extraordinary talents and gifts, beyond any in the possession of their peers. Or, perhaps, even the seemingly ordinary may step up to the need. It is these acts of goodness, kindness, and courage that can assure and inspire others to work towards a better future.
The Rainbow and the Grey A wide world means a wide array of experiences. An individual in Varia is liable to commit any number of acts on the spectrum of morality, as well as bear witness to them. The lines of good and evil are subjective, dependent on the perspective of the arbitrator. Sometimes justice is not justice for all. Perhaps heinous acts had more benign intents. At times, the right answer is simply the right one in that moment.
History Varia is built upon the records of legends. Organizations and beliefs revolve around the surmised intents and doctrines taken from surviving relics of bygone times. History is the telling of events, not always the exact record of what was. And, more often than not, there is a narrator.
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