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The First Empire
Capital Tarsis (Imperial City)
Religion Indigenous beliefs
Languages Tarsin dialects
Government Feudal monarchy
Leader Unknown


The First Empire is a name retroactively given to the Tarsin Empire and its constituent kingdoms before the Salvation of the World. This era was markedly different from the modern one, both culturally and technologically, though not politically. 

History[]

The Old Coalition was destroyed by the Beacon Cataclysm, this is a known fact. However, the Beacon Cataclysm only effected the surfaces of planets and the ability to travel interstellar distances. Many fleets were left clustered at Lagrange points, many troves of treasures were left with them. While the knowledge base to reproduce these things had been lost in the two thousand years of strife across the World, the Old Coalition left plenty behind. That power would be harnessed by the First Empire to fuel the reconquest.

The Age of Resurrection (~10,000 - ~8000 BC)[]

These early days are almost as misty as the pre-Cataclysm World. Very little survives beyond what later Chroniclers wrote, and thousands of legends. These were the years of the mighty founders, of Karslan and Iril, and many more heroes and villains long since ascended to mythical status. The zaian and vasîv were present from this era as well, though it is not known what they were up to. Atheran had become the High Chronicler of the Archive, and was guiding the Tarsins in their quest to gather and preserve all knowledge. Niren-Sûl had become something of a prophet, preaching of a second fall, when mankind would need a savior to defeat the greatest evil that yet faced the World. The New Faith was spawned from his teachings and writings that would soon outlive him. During the reconquest, the outer kingdoms were created, Sǎrthîon among them. These were sub-realms too distant from Tarsis for the Emperor to oversee directly, so kings were given scepters and left to rule as best they saw fit. They would become powerful in their own right, waging private wars against outsiders and other kingdoms alike.

This era is considered by later historians to have come to an end with the fate of Atheran and Niren-Sûl]. The demons of Ûnalîar had grown too powerful to ignore, and some in the Emperor's counsel believed they were on the verge of gaining interstellar capabilities. Something had united them with purpose, and it had to be taken down. The two greatest of the zaian agreed, and offered to lead the expedition themselves. But even the wisest cannot see all, and what they found on Ûnalîar was beyond any of them. Their deaths caused the zaian to retreat inwards and withdraw from the World. They passed out of living memory, and then out of common memory, until they became merely half-forgotten legends from when the World was younger. They would not appear again until the final days of the Savior.

The Age of Stillness (~6000 BC – ~3000 BC)[]

With the retreat of the zaian, the quest for knowledge faltered, and became focused solely on preservation. Their efforts did yield results, and previously overlooked information was made use of. The two thousand years of slow reconquest were over. The etherspace beacon network had been restored, worlds had been re-industrialized, and stability maintained. It had not been easy work; only by the foresight and hard work of now-distant ancestors were the people of this time able to enjoy the fruits of victory.

It was in this time that the Empire's boundaries began to pass out of the heart of the Old Coalition. They left behind the ruins of elder days, and entered into new reaches. The Tarsins were no strangers to aliens, the zaian were still recalled and the vasîv were elusive but present, but for the first time they encountered civilizations that were their inferiors. The first of these was the petty realm of Umalis, inhabited by creatures later known as digondarians. Their home planet was lost to them, but a band of Tarsin clans of high blood helped them find it, only to reduce them to thralldom afterwards. They called it the Kingdom of Digondar, where the noble clans ruled over the primitive alien masses, becoming another one of the outer kingdoms.

The outer kingdoms were becoming troublesome. Sǎrthîon grew ever more apart from the rest of the Tarsin realms, while kings fought each other more often than barbarians. Their wars were minor compared to the efforts of the reconquest, but they were disruptive all the same. The seeds of discord were planted and were growing, seeds that would bear bitter fruit in time.

The Plague also made its first visit to the World, tearing through every civilization, Tarsin or not. Sǎrthîon was not as badly affected, perhaps because of their use of dark technologies to ward it off. Grievances and grudges built up, and finally, the King of Sǎrthîon renounced allegiance to the Emperor, and went his own way. It was a sign of the times. The Tarsins were losing their way. Lust for wealth and power had displaced loyalty and faith in the high bloodlines. The living grew obsessed with death, and ways to ward it off, as their gods waned in influence. Once, it might have been possible for mortals to become functionally immortal, but that was lost with the Cataclysm. Distrust and fear were everywhere, and this was what Hâlǔmǎr found when he came to the court of Sîn-Ǔshurôs in the twilight of the First Empire.

The Age of the Shadow Emperor[]

See also: Salvation of the World

:^)
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