Welcome, noble reader, to The Tale of Ages, a testament to a place that never was. My name is Jerilyn Haligar, formerly of Colcester, and you hold in your hands my life’s work, the annals of ancient and well-storied world of Sangrar.
The world created by the Primals, the world of my youth, is no more. That world ended with the Long Night and the fulfillment of the Prophecies, an ending so utterly final that its very existence was erased. Now, that Sangrar lives only in my rapidly fading memories and in its stead lies a new world, one with a different past. A world in which the Primals never were and there is only one Sun.
Many survived the Long Night, but only I remember the Sangrar that was. Before the end, Bayonell the Herald, he who came from the Void, named me Sangrar’s chronicler, and when the Prophecies were fulfilled, I stood at his side. By his grace, I have witnessed the turning of the ages, I have felt the raging tumult of the world breaking and have seen that which lies beyond the Girdle. I have beheld the Balance and remember, but not even the Herald’s boon can safeguard my memories forever. Now I race against time, frantically recording the ancient legends before they fade entirely into the mists of time.
This story takes place sixty five hundred years after Kandol, Aeris and Valdarag rescued Ilnaya. No longer does the ground murmur with earth song. No longer do Nammovalle’s obsidian spires glisten. No longer do Caradar’s halls echo with the pounding hammers of the Forge Folk. In Esel, Edda, Imma and Olla shine overhead, guarded by Aeriel the Dawn Mistress, who shepherds in each morn. Erlik One-Eye, the Dark Lord, battles her at dawn and dusk from his refuge in the Darkstar, and his Dark Ones dwell on Sangrar, hiding mostly by day and hunting by night. Sangrar is dominated by Mankind and the kingdoms of Man have spread across the land, surpassing those of the Elder Days in size, yet falling short in majesty. The greatest is Sangrithar, the City of the Golden Star, an empire ruled by the God-Emperors, beings with powers far greater than mortal man.
Most of the Elder Races have forsaken Sangrar; those that have not are few in number. The greatest of them, Kandol Elf Lord, rules the Fair Folk from his tower atop the Mountain of Clouds. You who are reading this will not remember Kandol, the most ancient and grand of the Fair Folk. The last of the lords of the Elder Days, Kandol was born in fair Nammovalle under the Full Radiance of the Three Suns. Silver haired, with sorrow-born wisdom in his eyes, his aura blazed with yesterday’s glory. For several years, I was privileged to sit at Kandol’s feet in his home on the Mountain of Clouds, while he regaled me with stories of Sangrar’s past. Perhaps he knew what would come from his sharing; those of his house have always had strong ties to fate.
Like the great stories of the Elder Days, this tale concerns the Warrior, Prince and Priestess. In every age, the Balance selects champions to do its will and in this tale, that champion is Hali, Lord Warden and commander of Sangrithar’s legions, an embittered patriot weary from the wanton excesses of his master, Torval Waverider, the God-Emperor of Sangrithar.
Enjoy, noble reader and salute the glory of yesteryear. Through you, may the Sangrar of my youth live once more. May the Maiden’s kiss bless you and may the Explorer guard your path.
Dean Emeritus of History,
University of Colcester,
Sangritharian Fellow of the Ages