Curse of the Black Wyrm
History of Five Waters
The known history of Five Waters is marked by two great, highly destructive conflicts. Together, they have left a once vibrant realm a place of ruin, uncertainty, and for some – death.
The first major conflict was the War of Anauroch, nearly 2,000 years ago – a violent civil war among the elves that is shrouded in mystery (largely by way of the efforts of elven historians). Before the war, Anauroch was a splendorous elven kingdom in the center of a large and verdant realm. Whatever drove them to war, the results were devastating. All that remained of the once beautiful land was the great Anauroch desert. It is said that there are some places in the world where the sound of Anauroch’s destruction still echoes today.
After the war, the elves rebuilt in Semberwood, the enormous forest at the center of Five Waters, and they built the great city and kingdom of Myth Drannor. They watched as humans rose up from savages to civilized people, and formed relationships with the other demi-human races (with varying degrees of success). Orcs and goblins thrived in the wild and dark places of the world, and the different races occasionally fought together in fending them off. Small wars and other events shaped Five Waters over the course of nearly a thousand years. The human civilization was prospering. Then, it happened…
The second major conflict came suddenly, in the form of Dragons. Some say they came from across the Anauroch, others claim they were born directly out of the sky. Nobody really knows where they came from or why, but they changed life in Five Waters forever. What has become known as the Dragoncoup was the arrival of a flight of Great Wyrms, the Dragonlords, spreading death and destruction everywhere that they went. The cities and nations of humankind set aside all differences, trying to fight back, but it no use. Human civilization was swiftly crushed, the dwarves and gnomes hid underground, while halflings and orc-kind avoided most of the attention by having only small, unassuming settlements.
With there magical prowess and advanced technologies, elves were quickly identified as the greatest threat to the Dragons. The Dragonlords rallied an army of lesser dragons and laid siege upon Kingdom of Myth Drannor. The death toll on both sides was staggering, and the elves fought hard. The dragons ruthlessly destroyed ever city, town, and village they could find, until the might of the elves was finally broken. They were forced to abandon Myth Drannor, scattering. Many of the civilians retreated into the area of the forest now known as the Elven Court. The Dragons had won. Five Waters belonged to them.
In the 750 years since the Dragoncoup, the Dragonlords set themselves up as overlords, taking what they wanted, when they wanted. Hindered by the greed and hunger of dragons, the rebuilding of Five Waters has been a slow process. Many places still carry the scars of the Dragoncoup.
Elves have been dwindling n number ever since. They breed slowly, and all attempts to rebuild a significant elven civilization have been met with destructive intervention by the Dragonlords. They are a scattered, dieing race.
Humans, dwarves, gnomes,a nd Halflings have managed to get along with significantly less harassment, to varying degree. The dragons have allowed them to build cities and small countries, crown kings, and so on, but they are watched closely, and usually forced to pay some kind of tribute to the Dragonlords. Any time the Dragonlords perceive any person, city, or kingdom as a threat, they are swiftly dealt with.
Orcs, on the other hand, have been permitted nearly unfettered freedom. They keep their own numbers in check with their in-fighting and frequent tribal wars, but cause plenty of trouble for the other races of Five Waters as well. Half-Orcs have become pretty common, a reflection of the wide reach of the Orcs.
As of now, Cormyr stands as the largest, most successful human kingdom in the known world. Many wonder, in whispered tones, how long the Dragonlords will allow Cormyr to stand unchallenged.