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The island of Etosil is the largest of a collective group of islands named the Etos Isles. While a large number of these islands are nothing more than barren rocks that jut out from the sea, some islands, Etosil in particular, are lush and fertile with plant life. Some may consider the Isles a paradise in the sea, however that is only partially true. The Isles are frequented by harsh storms, strong winds, lightning strikes and are known for insect borne illnesses to spring up on occasions. Despite such dangers however, the islanders have flourished within the Isles. The natural difficulty of navigating around the Isles keeping them safe from many of the dangers at sea, allowing them to develop separately from much of the world, and as they developed, so did their culture. While the Isles were protective of the people within, they also acted as a cage, keeping the developing Humans within and it wouldn’t be until the fall of the Elven Empire and rise of Human dominion that the Isles would be exposed to large scale trade and foreign relations.

Etosil: Then and Now

It is unknown when Humans first came to the Etos Isles, some historians even believing that the Isles were one of the birthplaces where Humans developed separately from their Seraph ancestors. This claim is commonly accepted due to the remnant Seraph ruins that remain from a time long forgotten. The ruins themselves are mostly gone or integrated into Etosa building architecture. Many researchers believe that Etosa culture has developed in such a way that it attempted to emulate Seraph design based on the ruins the islanders have lived amongst all their lives, however as time passed, the culture deviated to be more artistic, individualistic and expressive. In more recent years, the culture of Etosil has been evolving rapidly to incorporate bits of pieces of foreign cultures as trade and foreign relations increase, furthering the more individualistic and unconventional ideals of the culture.

Lapis Lazuli in Etosil

Etosil has always been a financial entity within the history of current Aloria. The Isles being immensely rich with lapis lazuli, along with exotic trade goods, have given Etosil a high standing within the trade world of Aloria. Currently a large trading hub for much of Aloria, second in riches only to Regalia itself, Etosil is adorn with all manner of trade goods from across Aloria. In the past many kingdoms have sought to usurp Etosil of its riches, but have always failed; stopped by large mercenary factions or the treacherous waters around Etosil and the Isles. The Isles have not seen hostility since the rise of the Regalian Empire, save for the occasional pirate raid, because of this, the islanders were unprepared for the growing threat that looms over the Etos Isles.

Undead on Etosil

Due to its vast wealth, Etosil lacks any sort of large military or militia, instead relying on the natural defense of the island and mercenaries. Because of this, Etosil was caught unprepared for an attack from within the Isles themselves by the undead. It began as mysterious disappearances at first, a person never returned home at night. A merchant got lost and hasn’t been seen since. A child went missing. Soon however, it became outright attacks by undead. Any person they didn’t kill, they would drag off to somewhere else on the island. Before adequate mercenaries could be hired to combat the growing undead threat, many had been lost to the undead. The undead had always been an issue within the Isles, an alarming amount seemed to rise compared to most of Aloria, however never had they been so organized in their attacks, nor in such large numbers.

Researchers believe that the plague of undeath in Etosil is most likely due to the effect lapis lazuli has with the connection to the Veil. The stone while beautiful and useful in dyes, serves a purpose within the world of mages. The stone seems to interfere with the connection that a person’s aura has with the Veil, distorting magic and disrupting a mages concentration. Many unruly or imprisoned mages have a lapis lazuli collar placed around their necks, making it impossible for all but the greatest mages to perform magics. The researchers believe the sheer amount of the stone that is used in Etosa culture, and the amount found beneath the ground disrupts an auras ability to return to the Veil, causing undeath.

The cause aside, the undead threat within the Etos Isles is a growing one. While the mercenary armies have been successful in repelling the undead attacks, any person who dies within the Isles becomes a potential threat. The islanders, reluctant to leave their homes, have resorted to burning their dead and curfews to keep their citizens safe while they await aid from the Regalian Empire.