It has been centuries, millennia, since the Empire of Nezar once existed in this world – one of manyb great human nations that vied for control with the fall of the elves and the rise of man. That race of men has fallen into myth – and the truth of their loss has fallen even further into obscurity. The elves, and even the dragons, have forgotten the people who once existed in that land of blistering sands and verdant oases. Some historians find scraps – ancient texts speaking of ‘pale demons’ of ‘shrieking souls’. They put this down to the wild flights of imagination the ancient peoples had of magic and their limited understanding of the world.
Raving madmen who emerge from the Plane of Shadows shriek of a black pyramid with darting forms around it. They whimper about creatures, things that wear the shape of men but are made of the stuff of shadows. These are put down to the nature of the Plane of Shadows, the twisting and corrupting nature of that terrible place.
The world held these truths until a hole ripped open the sky above Magnimar and darkness poured forth. An inverted pyramid of utter darkness, absorbing all light and draining joy from all who looked upon it emerged above the vast city. Crouched in its battlements were great drakes – massive beasts formed out of the void and frost. Other things lurked – lumbering things, like giants but skeletal and grey – haggard and drawn.
But these were not the masters of the city.
On shadowy contrails the Lords of Nezar-Thon descended on Magnimar. They wore robes and armour of utter darkness, and their eyes burned with intensities of pure white, sickly yellow, pale blue, and piercing grey. The arrival of the Thaumaturgic Lords of the Shado’var spoke with the Lord-Mayor and told Haldmeer Grobaras that he had nothing to fear, that Emperor Calidorn chose to emerge with the great temple in the heart of the once vast Nezareen Empire.
They made the Lord-Mayor swear the fealty of Magnimar to Nezar-Thon and Emperor Calidorn, promising that the city would be protected from the evils of the world. At large the Thaumaturge Lords swept across the land, treating with kings and heroes and letting them know that the reemergence of Nezar-Thon was nothing terrible, that they only wished to finally escape the clutches of the Plane of Shadows.
Meanwhile, armies gather. Slaves whipped into formations. Ancient allies hearing the call leave long time homes to once more join with the armies of the Shade. Thoguh the Shado’var move with smiles and peacefulness in the daylight, their hidden hands gather to them forces within the darkness.