The message was maddeningly cryptic, even for a prophecy. That Druzzil Ro should even come to Solusek in the first place was cause for suspicion, but try as he might the burning prince could not devise any ulterior motive for her visit. The goddess of magic had come to warn him of a threat to the very sun itself. Solusek Ro listened intently to her prognostication, the exact wording of which is now lost to the sands of time. Druzzil Ro refused to help Solusek decipher the exact meaning, leaving him instead to reach his own conclusions and decide his own course of action.
What Solusek had decided, in the end, was to not take any chances. The Prophecy of Ro, as vague as it was in many parts, was quite clear in the fact that one who would one day rise to threaten the sun god now walked beneath the canopy of the Elddar Forest. The Elddar Forest, therefore, must be destroyed.
Over the coming years, scholars and academics would attribute this action to mere jealousy on the part of Solusek Ro, and while he was certainly capable of such pettiness, it was in fact the prediction of his ultimate demise that spurred him to action. A direct attack would likely draw the attention of Tunare, and as much as the sun god despised the nature goddess he did not relish the idea of an all out war with her, either. He would have to move subtly and over time, and the method he used for this would later become known as the Desert of Ro and the Serpent’s Spine Mountains.
As the years wore on and the forest gave way to the burning sands, Solusek’s plan encountered resistance from an unexpected quarter: the elves of Takish’Hiz. The elves, it seemed, were not take the destruction of their home and beloved forest lying down. Ever resourceful, the crafty elves had devised a new school of magic to combat Solusek’s assault- geomancy. The thought that mortals should act against the wish of a god enraged Solusek, and he took immediate and personal action to remedy the situation. This action set a great machine into motion that would take eons to culminate in not only the death of a false god during his attempt to destroy the sun but the sun god himself…
Mayong Mistmoore was not so different from the other elven children of the Takish Hiz, slight of stature and swift of hand. Mayong, however, was the only son of Takish Hiz’s greatest warrior and most powerful spell caster, which afforded him the very best of training in both arts. His aptitude in either discipline was obvious from the start. Mayong’s mother was a gifted geomancer, one of the pioneers of the new school of magic. By far the strongest among her people, she was viewed as many to be their last hope. Mayong was in the temple on the morning Solusek arrived and slaughtered his mother and the other geomancers in attendance, but against all odds the youth somehow survived. Driven mad with pain and grief, the now hideously mangled and emotionally unhinged elf roamed aimlessly over the following years, finding himself eventually on the shores of an as yet undiscovered Kunark, where fate allowed him to cross paths with another prominent figure in Norrath’s history: Venril Sathir.
At the time of their meeting, Venril was of no more import to the world than the outcast Mayong. The two met on the shores of what would later be called The Overthere, near Venril’s birthplace, the iksar city of Charassis. The ambitious Venril was growing restless under his father’s ineffective rule of the Kunzar tribe, and was even now planning the patriarch’s untimely demise. One evening while out hunting, the iksar had stumbled onto the horribly mutilated remains of a sabretooth tiger. Intrigued, Venril followed the grisly trail until he spied Mayong, couching by the shore of the Timorous Deep, gnawing a raw sabretooth leg. The feral, disfigured elf was unlike anything Venril had seen, but even in this state the astute iksar knew this to be a being of great power.
Details of the first meeting are unclear, but by all accounts the upstart iksar befriended the elvish outcast and began visiting the nearby cave Mayong was using as a home frequently to spar with him and teach him the guttural hissing that is the iksar language. Venril’s investment eventually paid off as the radically different fighting styles and elven magics Mayong taught him allowed him to overthrow his father’s regime and ascend to the throne of the Kunzar tribe.
Mayong and Venril grew to be friends over the following years, or at least as close to friends as such corrupt, power-hungry beings can ever hope to achieve. As Venril began his campaign to conquer and unite the remaining tribes of the divided iksar nation, Mayong was researching long-forgotten tomes unearthed during his explorations of Kunark. He sought a means to join Venril’s side yet the distrustful iksars would never allow an outlander to walk amongst their kind. Eventually, after months of experimentation, Mayong’s efforts came to fruition and he was able to craft a shroud that would allow him to pass among the iksar as one of his their own. The creation of such a powerful artifact was not without cost, however, as the final cantrip of the spell sent a shockwave of magical energy through the elf’s body, leaving his flame-scarred skin a sickly pale color, which he soon found out was very painful when exposed to sunlight. Primarily a nocturnal creature anyway, the burden of having his activities limited to the darkness of night troubled him little. The magical effects of the blast also rendered Mayong unable to receive nourishment from the consumption of food; he was now burdened with the need to drink the blood of his victims for sustenance. That very evening Mayong strode into Venril’s throne room and introduced himself as Dometrius.
Venril and ‘Dometrius’ spent much of their time exploring Kunark and unearthing Shissar artifacts from the Before Green era. It was on one such expedition in 313 A.G.that they made a discovery that would alter not only their lives but the very fate of all Norrath: the hidden library of the long dead necromancer Kotiz. Within Kotiz’s hidden cache the two found many wondrous and powerful relics, but none more so than The Unholy Writ of War. The knowledge contained therein allowed the two already obscenely powerful beings to achieve unheard of might. Venril used the tactics and dark magics he learned to lead the Kunzar tribe across the far reaches of Kunark and achieve his vision of uniting the iksar nation. Mayong used the book to master the forbidden arts of necromancy and mind control. Both would use that accursed tome to transcend the bounds of mortality and achieve the promise of endless life found only among the undying. Mayong’s interpretation of the spell allowed his magic-ravaged frame to evolve into a much more powerful undead form: that of Norrath’s first vampire.
Venril and, indirectly, Mayong ruled Kunark with an iron fist for many years, and the newly founded Sebilisian Empire thrived. Venril took a mate, Druesilla, and had a son, Rile, before moving his capitol to the city of Sebilis. Mayong grew more and more restless, spending the majority of his time testing the limits of his new found powers by creating vampire thralls among his mind-controlled slaves, the majority of which would later infiltrate the Combine Empire and follow them through their portals to the moon of Luclin before Valdanov Zevfeer, eventually lead them to settle in the permanent night of the Tenebrous Mountains.
In A.G. 370 Venril, longing to seize power similar to that Mayong had achieved, began preparations to complete his own ritual of undeath. Seeing an opportunity to follow in his father’s footsteps, Rile tampered with the ceremony and disrupted Venril’s attempt at becoming a lich, thereby allowing him to claim the Sebilisian crown for himself. Mayong maintained close relations with the throne and Rile tolerated the vampire’s comings and goings, primarily out of fear and the hope to one day use the powerful ally to his advantage. During this time Mayong created the drachnids that still plague the badlands of Kunark but it was not until Trakanon and eventually the entire Ring of Scale waged war on the iksars that the true depths of Mayong’s skills were known.
Rile and his vast armada were destroyed in Trakanon’s initial attack in late 406 A.G., leaving his son Atrebe Sathir to wear the crown. Overwhelmed, the new king came to his grandfather’s old friend, now haunting the depths of Kurn’s tower and conducting his unspeakable experiments with the help of the tower’s namesake. Together, Mayong and Kurn were able to create the Sarnaks and the now extinct Sokokar flying mounts to help the Sebilisian army fend off the Ring of Scale. As the war raged on Atrebe fell and was succeeded by Ganak. Also at this time the great iksar artificer Dag of the Forbidden Circle (or ‘the Blasphemere of the Brood’ as he would later be called) began his magnum opus- the dagger known as Throatslitter. Shortly after ‘acquiring’ the dagger, Mayong came to the conclusion that the war-ravaged Kunark was far too distracting a setting to conduct his research and decided to find a more secluded base of operations.
So it came to pass that the vampire found himself once again beneath the canopy of a mighty forest- the Lesser Faydark. He wasted no time in choosing a remote corner of the forest and promptly destroyed the nearby druid ring to keep some distance between himself and his no doubt intolerant neighbors. Mayong used his mastery in the arts of mind control to enslave the dark elven spies that had secluded themselves in Lesser Faydark with the intent of rousing the Crushbone orcs to war with the nearby elven cities. He then used his expertise of geomancy and dwarven craftsmen abducted from the nearby Butcherblock Mountains to build his new home: Castle Mistmoore.
The castle and his minions had finally afforded Mayong the isolation he needed to continue his research. He spent the next few centuries sequestered away from the endless distractions Norrath offered and focused on his studies. Eventually, however, the vampire began to spend less and less time in his castle and more and more time visiting his vampiric lover, Tserinna Syl’Tor in the magical spire he used his geomantic magics to create for her in the Iceclad Ocean of Velious. The Tower of Frozen Shadow was Mayong’s first attempt at creating an entirely magical structure, and would serve as a crude blueprint for his later creation, Dreadspire Keep. Mayong abandoned Tserrina and her tower as Velious came to the attention of the adventurers of Norrath, however, as it was too soon for him to be discovered and he could not risk undoing all he had planned.
The time Mayong had spent away from his home had left the castle in disarray; the vampires that inhabited the catacombs below his castle had split into factions in an attempt to fill the vacuum his absence created. The numerous gargoyles Mayong had crafted using his inherent geomantic skills and the werewolves he had brought with him from Kunark were being used as pawns in the endless power struggles waged between The Trueborn and The Progeny. Once again Mayong found his surroundings too chaotic to accomplish anything productive, so he decided to seek a new home away from Norrath’s meddlesome adventurers.
Dreadspire Keep would serve as a temporary fortress while the Master gathered the power required to create his own demi-plane. He filled the keep with the elite vampires, strongest gargoyles, mightiest drachnids and fiercest werewolves from Castle Mistmoore. Eventually Mayong had amassed the power and expertise to tear a whole in the very fabric of existence and recreate the Dreadspire Keep in a plane of his own creation: The Demi-Plane of Blood. All of the pieces were now in place for Mayong to complete the final act of his master plan.
Following the lead of his now ancient ally Venril Sathir, Mayong would use the greed of Norrath’s adventurers and explorers against them to trick them into doing his will. Once Venril had finished manipulating Diligence into exacting his revenge against dragonkind by invading and destroying the sacred nesting grounds of the dragons, the vampire lured them down into the depths below Norrath to Dreadspire Keep and eventually into The Demi-Plane of Blood itself. Once there, Mayong had lead them through an intricate plot culminating in a form of worship that had, in conjunction with centuries of spells and rituals, allowed him to transcend undeath much as he had previously transcended mortality and become a god.
In the months that followed, Mayong wasted little time in executing the next phase of his master plan. By extinguishing Norrath’s sun, the vampire god could simultaneously exact revenge for Solusek’s destruction of his home and family while clearing the way for his undead armies to sweep across Norrath without fear of the light. Mayong channeled his new found power through Irissa, the first and most powerful of his drachnid creations, to form a portal from the Demi-Plane of Blood to Solteris, the Plane of Sun. Protecting his armies from the heat and light of the sun was a greater drain on his resources than he had anticipated, but Mayong pushed on nonetheless, driven on by eons of unquenched hatred and an unbridled lust for power.
The screams of Mayong’s remaining minions echoed through the hall as he fell; deprived of his protective magics the stragglers combusted intensely and violently. There were no cheers, no celebratory woots or shouts of joy. As Echus had promised Mayong long months ago, Rommuluss finally knelt before the fallen god, but to check for valuables rather than to genuflect. The clerics set to the task of resurrecting the fallen as the druids and shamen cured assorted lingering magical ailments left over from the brawl. The warriors compared wounds (already scars, really, given the proficiency of the healers) and the paladins gave thanks to their gods for the victory. Those without a specific job in the post-battle routine took time to reflect on the magnitude of their accomplishment or time to question why Solusek Ro would refuse their assistance and instead chose to assist Mayong against them. They all had one thing in common, though: they all wondered if the relics the 2 gods possessed would be enough to help them in the coming battles with Meldrath and then, ultimately, the prismatic dragon Kerafyrm…