Bellows in the deep
Races of The Vale
The races of The Vale
Elves were the first born of all the races, they are immortal and are said to take after their god Lavos in image. The elves were once numerous and dominant over The Vale but much has changed. Over time the elves have dwindled in number and cohesion. The invasion of the orcs and the elves failed campaign of genocide against men, has destroyed any civilisation they elves once had. Now they find themselves either wandering the wilds or integrating into the lands of men, a far cry from their noble origins.
Humans are one of the last sentient creatures that Terra created. They were born for two purposes the first and the most pressing, was to defeat the Orcish invasion, where the elves had failed. The second purpose was to die. Terra pitied her uncle Morthos who waned in power every day. For all life that existed was immortal and so the god of death had nothing to sustain him. Terra famously tricked Lavos into giving life to man. Humans live to around a hundred years, which compared to the immortal races, is a blip. It’s this quick turnaround that gave man its strength, so little time to achieve, so little time to accomplish. This drove man to be better, to be stronger and as a result they now rule most of the Vale.
Dwarves were created by Terra to help her construct The Vale. They carved the mountains, planted the forests and sowed the grasslands. The Dwarves are immortal, like the elves and gnomes but they were never meant to have stayed on The Vale. After their work was complete they were to join Terra in other newer projects but this was not meant to be. Terra was murdered and the Dwarves and the Gnomes were left behind. Now the Dwarves wonder The Vale seeking a purpose, seeking a meaning to their life’s. Over the eons the Dwarves have suffered a great attrition, now there are very few left. Dwarves are hard folk and they continue to endure, but for how much longer? It is not known.
Orcs are technically considered as demons, for they are foreign to The Vale and were not born from its pantheon of gods. The orcs arrived on The Vale through a cataclysmic event, the war in the heavens. They followed a single god and this god was a one of domination and subjugation. It is said that this deity stormed the heavens and tried to slay our creators but it was undone by Heado, our god of war. Heado plunged his molten sword deep into the chest of the invader and it was cast down from the heavens and struck the continent of Valeth, shattering it into the shape we know today. It was from this Devine corpse that the orcs were born. Like their god the orcs were war like in nature and soon attempted to consume all of The Vale but thanks to the intervention of man they were beaten back and trapped in their land of ash and dust that we now call Hellion Fall. This incarceration has tempered the orcs somewhat and whilst they are still quick to temper and stubborn to the bone, they have managed to begin to inter grate with the world they now find themselves in. Being big brutish beasts of greens and greys, they have struggled to be accepted by the other races but now godless and stranded they must seek to become part of this world.
Gnomes were agents of Chnaan, sent to The Vale to gather and document the knowledge they found. They would report their findings to Terra, who in turn would pass them on to Chnaan. The Gnomes are once again immortal, designed to serve their patron for all time but like the Dwarves their purpose would be lost. With the death of Terra, the Gnomes lost their ability to commune with Chnaan and so too became disillusioned like the Dwarves and too had to find a knew purpose. The Gnomes being small in stature found themselves at a disadvantage at first surviving in an often harsh and unforgiving world but they would quickly learn. That is where the Gnomes excelled, knowledge, they may not be able to kill a troll, but they could trick it, they may not be able to lift a log to build a house but they could tell a man how to do so. The Gnomes have since found themselves in jobs and professions that utilise their knowledge such as librarians, architects and museum curators. However some still wander in search of new sources of information, being unable to shake their true purpose.
Dragon-born are a race of draconic humanoids, who are like the giants and halfings in that they are not created by a god but still native to The Vale. The dragon-born came into being through the union of the two most powerful races on the Vale , the elves and the dragons. This union was made possible by Friedith whom after witnessing the love between the prince of dragons and princess of elves, employed Myir to help give them mutual forms so that they may be together. Since then the dragon-born grew into a race, respected by both elf and dragon alike. The dragon-born often acting as ambassadors between the dragon and elves. However after the downfall of the elves and their dragon allies, the dragon-born have found themselves in a more mercurial life. Their natural affinity to magic and their all-round toughness has made them prized soldiers and bodyguards. Whilst it would appear that these dragon-born have fallen from their noble roots into savagery, it is clear that unlike many races of antiquity the dragon-born may have a significant future in the ages to come.
Tieflings are not considered a race, they have no home, they have no common deity and they have no common form. Tieflings are those whom serve the demons who try to invade the Vale, for ever changed and tainted by the alien powers of their patrons. Some tieflings are victims of past transgressions in their blood, children of these demon worshippers can often inherit their parents afflictions. As a rule these creatures are shunned by society, executed or exiled. However in the lands of Myirdom they may find a haven, as the society there are more excepting of the strange and magical.
Giants are a race born from men, but after the great exodus, have diverged from the normal human. Giants stand between 10ft and 12ft tall and have an incredible amount of muscle to support their size. Giants became so large and different from their human cousins because of the lands they chose to inhabit. During the exodus they moved west, through the inhospitable mordalwood and settled on the harsh west coast, a place that only the most terrible things survive. Over years of scraping out a living on the coast the men became men no more. The giants became nomadic over time following the seasons up and down the west coast, in their ‘land ships’. Many ask why they do not sail up the coast and the answer is simple, they can’t swim. The giants body is simply to large and dense to be able to stay afloat. Many giants have left their nomadic tribe and wondered out into the great wide world selling their obvious muscle to armies and merchants alike. Giants by nature are fairly dim witted and rather aloof, due to their size they tend not to worry about anything or anyone. Imagine being sat in a room of puppies, you wouldn’t have a care in the world, even the most ill-tempered and violent of puppies would not warrant attention.
Halflings are a close cousin to man, who after the great exodus, left to the southeastern coast. The weather in the south east is perfect, never to hot never too cold, the vegetation is a perfect balance between field and woodland, the largest animal in these parts is the domesticated cow this place is a paradise. Once the men found themselves here they did not want to leave and after years past they became plumper and they became shorter until they became the halfling. The halflings love nothing more than good food and good drink and they are more than content to live out their lives consuming both. However if a halfling becomes mad with wanderlust and leaves to explore the world, he can become the most brilliant of adventures. What a halfling lacks in physicality they make up for in spirit, they are never one to be defeated, always singing in the face of danger. The halflings deranged optimism is a thing to behold.