History Legend and Rumors
Solace was founded by Gordleon Lew as a small waystation into the mountain pass a little more than 300 years ago. With the aid of five other hardy souls and their families, Gordleon and his friends carved out a bustling trading post. In the tradition of the baronies, minor kingdoms and city-states on the western side of the Blue Cascades, Lew claimed most of the land that is now Solace and put his son in charge as king. The five other founding families were each ennobled and granted smaller amounts of land.
Gordleon’s son, King Venjamin, saw the economic potential of the town’s location and effectively reinvested the incoming coin into the city, its military and its people. The city flourished under his rule which lasted 50 years. Shortly after he died, the Blood War spilled out from the realms beyond this world and devastated much of Solace. The ensuing chaos and diabolical schemes were finally subdued by the hero Fidelis Calibrun. Things settled down for a while and the city and its trade began to slowly rebuild.
Unfortunately, the rift that allowed fiends to harass Solace and its environs was only a precursor of the chaos to come. Slowly, darkness began spreading. Neighboring city-states and baronies fell to attacks from all manner of monstrous beasts. The ancient kingdom of the desert, rotting from within for many years, suffered numerous natural catastrophes and splintered into bickering tribes. Magical connections to Por’theer and the large northern port city of Fairhaven were lost. Then, about 100 years ago, the Schism split the elves of Solace. The violence was minimal, but the damage to businesses, partnerships and unions was devastating. The most recent phenomenon of these cataclysmic changes was the appearance of the Dragonborn. About 50 years ago, a small tribe crawled out of the desert to the oasis on the eastern edge of the pass. They made their way to Solace where King Solovin, Madeline the Benevolent’s father, gave them sanctuary.
The past five decades have been difficult. The fey have evolved into two races, each bitterly opposed to the other. Teleportation magic has become extremely unreliable and scrying communications have broken down completely. Word from the nomadic tribes of the desert is scarce. More and more of the coastal baronies lose touch with Solace every day. And most striking, fiends, demons, and devils threaten Solace from all directions once again.
- The Blood War is understood to be conflicts between primal, elemental forces of chaos and unbending fundamental forces of malevolence. Some say these forces can have no form or guidance intrinsically and it is the humanoid races that supply the touch of evil needed to bring the manifestations of demons and devils into the world. Whatever the truth, Solace was ravaged by the Blood War 250 years ago. The fiends killed many people and destroyed much of the growing town. History shows that Fidelis Calibrun, a man from the lands of Regaonia, was rewarded handsomely by the city for his part in putting an end to the atrocities. Legends say he was a living embodiment of Time and Love.
- Hundreds of years ago as the small baronies, valley city-states and minor kingdoms were flourishing in the western lands, a great being of Fire and Air from the eastern deserts blasted a pass through the Blue Cascades. Or so the stories say. From time to time, new stories pop up about this Djinn Skylord. Some say he was responsible for the storm that whisked the Dragonborn of Solace from their original homeland.
- Various sources hint that the Schism may not be the first time the fey races evolved so drastically. Most ancient Elven works often refer to Gnomes as “younger siblings” although the works of the past 500 years tend to call them out as a separate race. The Dragonborn, recently arrived to Solace, have explained that the elves of their cities resemble the so-called Eladrin of Solace and the wild elves of their desert home are more like the other Elves; both are considered “cousins” by all races of that faraway land. Daelf Risenil, a renowned scholar who has spent most of his life at the edges of the Fey Wild on the island kingdom to the north, writes of an entire empire of Elves who, nearly a thousand years past, fell to darkness and were swallowed by Earth, Fire and Death yet survive still today in the deep places of the world.
- During the rule of Lathan the Younger, an ambassador from Fairhaven hosted a foreigner thought to have come from across the Cerulean Ocean. The foreigner was quite forbidding with small black horns, dark red skin and eyes like golden orbs. Some descriptions also include a thick tail and sharp, pointed teeth. Several reliable historical records make reference to him as a guest of the Fairhaven ambassador, but many whispered at the time that he was a son of one of the Noble Houses whose bloodline had been tainted by fiends of the Blood War.
- The Trade Guild is the only guild in Solace. It encompasses all aspects of the business of moving goods through the pass. Within the guild, a group of laborers have begun grumbling and gathering together to discuss ways to better themselves. Since entertainment of all sorts is a popular pastime in Solace, a growing group of performers meet regularly to coordinate their efforts and watch out for one another. Neither group is an official guild or union, but solidarity is in the air.
- Theodric, the Queen’s son and heir to the throne, has not yet married. Theodric still seems more interested in falconry, archery and hunting with a small groups of friends, all sons of the Noble Houses. Throughout its history, the royal family has allowed their children a certain degree of freedom to wed whom they please, however there are whispers that the King’s Steward is making inquiries in regards to possible brides for the Prince. There are other whispers that Theodric enjoys more than just hunting and archery with his male companions.
- Not yet officially acknowledged by the Crown or the King’s Council, the Blood War has returned to Solace. Several outlying operations, such as the lumber mill of Caleb Cynwrig, have reported all manner of difficulties ranging from unexplained fires to livestock mutilations. Within the city, word on the street has it that disturbing demonic figures scrabble through the Northern Rise on the outskirts of the Black Diamond Winery. There are some reports as well of fiendish creatures skulking around the edges of the Dragonborn blocks of Embassy East.
- A recent caravan of Halfling pottery has arrived from the desert accompanied by harrowing tales of manticores sighted once again at The Summit.