|Full Name||Teled Methen|
Teled Methen is an ancient place filled with ruins of the past, befitting the homeland of a now collapsed Empire. The Altalar are from this land, and for a time the Allorn Empire ruled much of known Aloria, or at the very least, dominated it. However, their fall from grace was slow and painful, with many hundreds of thousands ultimately dying within mere hours due to the Wildering, which happened at the same time the Cataclysm shook the world. This event annihilated the urban centers of the Altalar homeland, and returned much to the way that it was over two millennia ago when the Altalar were a young people. Recent warfare has scarred the landscape and corrupted wildlife, but the land is resilient, and much like the Altalar who somehow recovered from near annihilation, many believe that Teled Methen will too.
Teled Methen was settled by several ancient peoples in the millenia before the Cataclysm, with the jungles and rugged terrain decaying many of the remains of their civilization. But then came the Altalar, and the world changed. The origin of the Altalar is a subject of heavy speculation, wrapped up in the teachings of the Faith of Estel, ancient stories, and actual scholastical investigation. In general though, it can be said that the Altalar existed before the Fourth Void Invasion, but in a crude state that caused the powerful Meraic to regard them as little more than animals. But the Altalar did emerge after that people’s destruction as a major power, and rapidly expanded across the region. The Altalar formed a number of principalities, ruled over by princes and princesses, and worshiping the mysterious Moon-Well Goddess. They also fought each other and worked independently. This period would come to an end thanks to the actions of Talea Sunvidal, a Mage of enormous power and faithful to the new and growing Faith of Estel, who waged the World-Crown Wars to unite the Altalar under her rule. She was successful and began the Allorn Empire, which she ruled for over three centuries. Under her leadership, the Altalar expanded out from their point of origin, pushing into Daendroc found to their north, and then soon before her death, into western Teled Methen and the Hyarroc Headlands located there. Teled Methen itself expanded, and became heavily urbanized as massive cities rose and peeled back the jungles, keeping great swathes alive around temples and shrines to Estel. For a thousand years, Teled Methen was the thriving heart of the Altalar people, and the Consolidation saw their Empire secure its power and explore the world. But eventually that millenia of expansion came at a cost.
Despite the large numbers of colonists and settlers who went north as far as Ithania and east into the Headlands and the Far West, Teled Methen was wracked with overpopulation. Blessed with long life, and now having mastered many arts, Altalar lived whole centuries longer than they had in those ancient days of the first expansion. The Floundering began, first at the fringes of Teled Methen, but finally even the capital city of Alar Talea was forced to fight its nearest sisters for resources. Additionally, the Faith of Estel began to weaken at this time. Next came the Grandening, and for a time, there was “peace” as the upper classes engaged in elaborate political intrigue. There was still murder and death, but a level of “class” had been added to the whole affair, and armies outright doing battle was a great rarity during this period. It was also when most Altalar Cults were born, mostly focused on high-end political intrigue, but the Cult of Ciellonia was a rejection of everything the Altalar stood for. Seeking to return to an older time, these Ciellonists were often rural, and slowly over time, coaxed followers fully out of the urban cities and into the jungles or to the Ularen Wastes to farm and live simpler lives. But finally, the Allorn Empire reached its twilight.
First came the Mage Wars, conflicts between the principalities largely fueled by Mages (which at this point, made up a majority of the population given the commonality of Magic in this age). The Void got its claws into the power struggle and ultimately, all of this helped lead to the Fracture of Allorn. The Empire did not die, but slowly, principalities that formed the nation went dark, and refused the calls of obedience that came from the Cult of Talea that desperately tried to maintain the power of the Empress. But she was sadly just a figurehead, and in the final few centuries before the Cataclysm, saw chaos and misery reign. The Night of the Fallen Star added to this, with the slaughtering of the Nenya, and culling the Faith of Estel from the urban centers barely going unpunished by a people deeply unconcerned with such matters. But one thing did rouse them finally, and that was the Fifth Void Invasion. For once, the Empress was able to do something, and she called out to all Mages and nobles in her realm to raise their armies, for a great evil was coming to destroy everything that they owned. She then left Teled Methen with this force, and things were quiet for a time. But then there came the Wildering, a magical event seen by the Altalar today as their great punishment from Estel. In mere minutes, vegetation took back the urban centers of the heartland, and works that had taken centuries to complete, and made into pure, white, and tall perfection collapsed as roots overwhelmed the streets. Some people were even turned into plants themselves, and overall the event spelled a permanent end to the Allorn Empire, but also a new beginning for Teled Methen.
For the next century, Altalar either fled the ruins of their great cities for the coastline or clung to them, gradually becoming more “savage” in the eyes of most other Altalar. They also fought each other for control of what little was left, but the revealing of the Kathar, and the arrival of the Orcs ended these efforts as most Altalar retreated. This era also saw the beginning of Altalar diversity, while previously other Nelfin Races had emerged from Altalar leaving the homeland and the Altalar way of life. These aspects of diversity were mainly a result of where or how they lived in this new post-Cataclysm age. Eventually, new principalities arose or old ones asserted themselves, most operating out of coastal cities minimally impacted by the Wildering. Following 100 AC, the discovery of the Cielothar and the Avanthar sparked the Altalar spirit once again, and the principalities began to grow active in the wider world. Emerging as the Successor Principalities, they began to compete with each other and wider Aloria, sending out new slaving vessels and exploration ships, updating their charts and knowledge of the world. Teled Methen remained generally of low interest to the outside world for over a century following this first emergence. Trade and slaving was conducted, but never at the levels it once was, and in a way the Altalar had reverted to a pre-Awakening time. In recent years though, their great inactivity in the wider world came to an end in several big ways.
In the wake of the Elven War of 302 AC, the Altalar in the south were extremely disquieted. Their alliance with the Ailor was considered properly dead with this act, and most of the Principalities cut ties to the Regalian Empire was a result. But then came 303 AC, and with it the emergence of Estel in distant Essalonia. The Altalar were in shock, and a crisis of religion gripped their lands. Some thought that Estel was still angry with them (especially given how she had attacked even the Altalar who had bowed to her), and they needed to return even further to their old way of life, while others turned even more to the Void, and considered themselves a rejected people who deserved a better and more powerful god. The prevailing view that emerged though was that Estel was challenging the Altalar to be better, and to that end, emissaries of the Successor Principalities met in secret to knit the nations together. The result of this was the Magic Covenant, which the Altalar formed with the Songaskians and the distant Sihai, a union united in their heavy use of Magic. As a result, in 305 AC, the Regalian Empire moved on the united Altalar nations, and they responded in kind. Warfare lasted for over a year, but as it took place, the Altalar turned away from their other borders to focus on the Regalians coming in from their northern and eastern sides. As a result, they were taken off guard when the Kathar of the Dread Empire landed in full force, and the Wolond Kathar emerged from the Walds that they made their home.
The Altalar princes immediately retreated, and turned inward to fight these forces. When it became obvious that they were losing, with many of their most intelligent gone from the southern cities now under the control of the Kathar, the Altalar came to the Regalians. Thus, despite being enemies mere months earlier, the Regalians and the Altalar ended up on the same side. Near the end of 307 AC, the Kathar finally retreated (though mostly due to their own politics) and the Regalians parted ways with the Altalar, leaving them to fix a Void-scarred, war-ruined land. However, if Teled Methen’s history indicates anything, it is a resilient place, and thanks to its many ruins of the past, it remains a mysterious one.
Teled Methen is found south of Daendroc, west of Hadaria, and southwest of the Regalian Archipelago. The Western Calms border the western coastline, while the Snake Bend Strait borders the southern coast. The Hadar Sea touches its southeastern coastline, and the Daendroc Sea to its northeast. The continent’s geography is as diverse as Daendroc’s, and perhaps even more so. Proceeding from east to west, there are first the thick and vast jungles that are the Altalar heartland. Running for miles inland from the coast, these jungles were regrown by the Wildering and swallowed many cities into the ruins they are today. Mountain ranges dot the coastline and this vast expanse of vegetation, from which rush wide rivers flow that help form inroads around and through the jungle terrain. Along the coastline are the Elven Moors, an Ailor term for an area of terrain generally more open and hilly without much jungle. Marked by a dense cluster of mountain chains along the southern coast of the continent. Additionally, the region’s earth is generally more swampy and some of the least cultivated in all of Teled Methen, especially along the coastline which produces a windswept and strange devoid-of-life look. The region’s settlements stand as urban bastions and are often heavily reliant on outside trade. Along the southwestern coastline of the continent are the Hyarroc Headlands, which are a stretch of rugged cliffs that exist on several small peninsulas, thrusting the cities built on them out into the ocean, while inland a number of great cliffs dominate the landscape. A number of channels run between the different peninsulas, and a number of islands also dot this region. These are known as the Fin’ul Straits, and are the heartland of the Maritime Altalar. Further up the western coastline are thick jungles that exist on the eastern coastline.
Deeper into Teled Methen are three unique land formations. The first is the Vendrallis Ventifacts, or as most Common speakers know it as, the Stone Forest. Likely carved from a series of long-absent mountains, the Stone Forest is a vast maze of stone pillars and tunnels made of dark grey stone. Existing for centuries, or perhaps millennia, their origin is mysterious. Today, they are a mist-shrouded region known to hold many dangers. The Stone Forest is located above the Elven Moors deeper inland, and rests east of the next major formation in Teled Methen, the Wolond Walds. While the jungles of Daen might be deep, the Walds represent some of the oldest forestry in all of Aloria. Even at the height of the Allorn Empire, these centrally located jungles were left largely untouched, and so only grew in size and majesty with the Wildering. Unfortunately however, rather than the Faith of Estel thriving here, the Night of the Fallen Star culled what worshipers lived in the region, and Void Worshipers moved in as the newly christened Wolond Kathar. Since that time, the Walds have grown more menacing with each passing year, and the region is the only true bastion of darkness on mainland Daen away from the Dread Empire, who claims the region as its own. Finally, there are the open plains of the Ularen Wastes, which span across a good section of the northern reaches of Teled Methen, and serve almost as a buffer between this continent and Daendroc. The Ularen Pass is found here, and represents the narrowest point of the open plains that are the Wastes.
As for the climate and weather patterns of each region, they are similarly varied and different based on area and terrain. In general, warm and wet rains are pushed into the area over from Sendras with further rains, and often the tail-end of typhoons from the Hadar Sea also making landfall in southern or eastern Teled Methen. In comparison to both of these regions, the western coastline receives few storm patterns thanks to resting on the Western Calms. A major new feature of Teled Methen, however, are the new internal storms that plague the central regions of the continent. Thanks to the Dread Empire, who took and corrupted a number of ancient ruins within the jungles and mountains of Teled Methen, violent Void-based storms now frequently plague the inner lands of Teled Methen. Additionally, these towers are anchor points for Void Essence, and serve as corruption points that have extensively warped the plants and animals around them. Most are in the process of being taken down by the Altalar, but it is likely that their task will not be done for quite some time thanks to the insidious nature of the Kathar.
Teled Methen is filled with many plants, as its dense jungles and coastlines remain rich with the bounty of the natural world. The Allú'tornë, the great and key trees, make up a vast portion of the Teled Methen jungles, while the Areú’llei-oná is a far rarer tree, and appears to be dead. However it is not, but the reasons for this “disguise” are unknown as it bears no known fruit or leaves at any point. Bloodroot also finds its home in Teled Methen, but has been transplanted to the Far West and Daendroc, where it is used to create bright red-infused colors for artwork and tattoos. Two other plants of great importance are Dúllci Cane and Ceá’llë's Herb, one being used to make sugar and grows on plantations across Aloria, while the other is key to healing and has been exported worldwide as a result. The region is also well known for a variety of flowers, and other unique plants said to have been blessed, or influenced by Estel due to their great beauty.
Teled Methen’s varied topography and climate has birthed a great number of creatures, both in the air and on the earth, while the seas around the landmass also teem with life. In the jungles, Elven Longears bound through the foliage alongside Great Jungle Cats, Black Pathors, and other apex predators in search of prey. Out in the Ularen Wastes, the Ularen Lion is a feline that lives in prides with others of its kind, hunting animals like the foolish-looking Mooan. Along the coastline and in the waves, great predators like Saltwater Snappers hunt fish such as Barnacle Trout while inland in the rivers, the Daen-wide Red Fairfin Fish swims alongside many others, coloring streams, rivers and lakes many beautiful shades with their color palette. Creatures unique to the region alone are many, such as the dreadful Grashobaig, a creature hunted by the Orcs dotting the western coastline, or the Wódbehaeri, animals mutated and tamed by the Wolond Kathar into powerful battlemounts that they use when riding out against their foes. Finally, there is the most infamous beast of them all, the Basilisk, which hides at the heart of the Vendrallis Ventifacts and hunts those who enter its domain with the help of the Stone Forest Snakes, creatures seemingly enslaved to the larger snake’s will.
Politics and Demographics
Teled Methen holds the remains of the ancient Allorn Empire in the form of the Successor Principalities, a collection of nations who owe fealty to no one but themselves. They are numerous, and range from cosmopolitan trading states to militaristic and zealous warrior nations. However, they are united by a number of features. For one, all are ruled by Altalar, and therefore their upper society often subscribes to the ideals of the Altalar. Additionally, they are united by their shared hatred of the Avanthar, Cielothar, Kathar, and essentially all other Nelfin subraces as traitors and offshoots of an already perfect people. Finally, the nations of Teled Methen are all slave states, without exception. While there were once pockets and minor principalities who did embrace equality for all, the other Altalar states crushed them. The Successor Principalities are also notable for having fully united for a full two years in the face of the rising Regalian Empire. Ultimately as it stands today, the unity of these different nations is likely to continue, especially as over half of them have lost their leadership to the war with Regalia and the conflict with the Kathar.
Below is a list of the different Successor Principalities:
- Ríëlla Rivaëlla
- Ës’l Sälarna
- Fennä Tess
- Fennä Salhana
- Fennä Fu’tain
- Click here for more information on Graelle Talea
The ruins of Alar Talea, while absolutely in ruin, still survive into the modern-day. Unlike the rest of Teled Methen, an added effect of the Wildering was a massive earthquake that consumed the royal capital, destroying much more of its architecture even as roots and tree trunks did their damage. The result of this was a giant crater, a warp in the landscape that confused Altalar who sought to find the site after their people had regrouped. It didn’t help that there were no survivors from the city, and the only mentions of it were from refugees who fled the fringes of the capital. Today, Alar Talea is known to the wider world, though its ruins are still deep and complicated. Graelle Talea, originally a rural offshoot settlement of the royal capital, has since grown into one of the largest settlements in Aloria, and the closest point to the site of the former capital. Overgrown with dense brush and sitting in its crater, the Altalar of the modern world have slowly made progress in cutting through the vegetation, gradually unveiling more of the ruined city though many believe there are still miles of rooms and buried chambers to uncover yet.
Seraphim Oxylypha has long been known to Altalar scholars, though it has also been inaccessible to their kind. Centuries ago during the Consolidation, Altalar stumbled on an extensive Seraph complex located in the deep jungle. They raided the site and recovered much, but their Mages were finally forced to retreat when they unleashed something described as unstoppable. Over the following years, visits to the site grew rarer and rarer, as the Altalar turned to their own politics and issues rather than the knowledge of the past. Unfortunately, this allowed for others interested in the site to gain access to it with less than honest intentions. By the Night of the Fallen Star, the site was under the control of Kathar, who turned it into a sort of “training ground” for their Mages. Defeating the Seraph-born constructs of Petralyths, Ytatrons, Petratrons and more was the ultimate test of a Mage’s skill, and so the “Oxy Challenge” grew in prominence among these Void worshipers. However, the Wildering came and the Wolond Kathar turned more to the wilds that were now their home. Today, the Seraphim Oxylypha rests somewhere within the southern Wolond Walds, and had only been rediscovered once since the Cataclysm, by an Altalar scholar named Iri’is Penthaï. He reported that the Wolond Kathar still guard the site, which is overgrown with jungle and harbors fearsome Magus creatures that lurk within the dark corridors.
Üntannall-Pröpole is the most significant Maritime Altalar city in Aloria. Positioned at the tip of one of the Hyarroc Headland’s peninsulas that make up the Fin’ul Straits, the city is also one of the most natural in Aloria. It has several harbors, ranging in scale, and meant for different types of sailors, from simple fisherfolk in the simple but always busy Hab-lavin Harbor to the decadent, slaver-focused harbor of Gollagelle’s Warf. The city’s design around these harbors is also rather unique, as it sits on a cliff, but rather than force long walks up high vertical steps, the designers of the city sought to instead carve into the rock. This has resulted in at least a solid third of the city existing in the sheltered protection of the great white rock cliffs that surround Üntannall-Pröpole with an underground “Great Ramp” allowing for a slow incline up to the “rear” of the city, which then allows people access either out onto the land routes down the peninsula or to turn around and proceed into the large, aboveground city. Another major feature of the region is “Estel Enlightening”, a huge statue carved into a white cliff face that looks out at all harbors, and much of the eastern side of the city. Presenting the goddess in a very traditional Elven way, with the eight members of the Altalar Pantheon bordering her (four on each side), it is over a thousand years old, and while water has worn away the lower third of the statue, it remains as one of the most intact examples of Consolidation architecture. The statue was damaged by the Kathar in their war with the Altalar, but Magic has helped repair the damage.
Existing off of Teled Methen’s eastern coastline, the island of Tenna’dëolon was well known for centuries as the personal kingdom of Prince Orollondra Läefel, despite technically belonging to the Princedom of Precaëlle. He came into control of the island half a century before the Cataclysm, but went dark for over a century in the wake of the Wildering. When Altalar made contact with the island again, they found a thriving population of Teledden Altalar ruled over by their sly and cunning prince. He then spent the next half a century manipulating the forces on the mainland into fighting each other for control of his land. Ultimately though, Precaëlle prevailed, and his harbors opened to the vessels of them and their allies. In more recent times, when the Regalian Empire began their war with the Altalar, Tenna’dëolon was deemed unsafe. Saddened but seeing logic, the 400-year-old prince made an example of the Regalians, slaughtering an entire army before the eyes of its leadership, and a cheering crowd of Altalar citizens within his great Hippodrome before evacuating the island for the mainland. Today, the thin strip of land is under the control of the Regalian Empire. Once known as a major stop-over between Daen and Hadaria, it was also known as a place of great pleasures and enjoyment, as Prince Läefel always worked hard to make all happy. The island’s Hippodrome, now known to the Altalar as “The Hippodrome of Hubris” due to the boldness of the Regalians marching an army half the size of the force defending the island, was destroyed by the Regalian Empire with help from the Orcs. Today, it looks more and more likely that the island will be reborn as a military base, but only time will tell.
- The Hyarroc Headlands are often named as a separate continent in Altalar texts and maps, though much of the wider world recognizes the fact that the Headlands are not big enough to be their own continent, and lack the geographic differences to count as a new landmass.
- Despite the Yanar being from Teled Methen, a vast majority have fled to other areas of Aloria, sickened from the knowledge that the continent was where the greatest of the Nenya were killed, but also as many believe that the Altalar are unable to return to the proper ways of the Faith of Estel.