The universe began like many do. The birth of something from nothing, a paradox followed by the delineation and coalescence of matter and energy. You’ll see great rocks and gas clouds revolving around each other and sometimes, if you look very closely, tiny collections of spirited forms bustling about. Our story takes place upon a small wet rock with a particularly distressing past. Let’s give it a name, Paralogos.
Like many others, this rock formed around a giant ball of fusing gas and was showered with anti-entopic bodies during its youth. These bodies propagated and lived their little lives on the surface of the planet. One fateful day, a huge explosion rocked the world, and occurring in an ocean, sent a mist around the globe. A portal had opened from another dimension. A dimension where the laws of physics flowed like tears from their ducts, or rushed like blood through a racing heart. Magic had entered the world.
Sometime later, an extra-solar visitor came crashing through the system. Smashing into the new magic field surrounding Paralogos, a gravity shock-wave quaked the fabric of space itself, rending our poor little planet into chunky bits. Curiously, the now shattered planet maintained its course around its parent star, though its parts had some space between them. It might have something to do with the great winged beast that settled to rest on a prominent shard of the magical wanderer.
Let’s have a closer look at one such bit, a land known by its inhabitants as Avalon.
The inhabitants of Avalon have lived in a magical and tumultuous land for eons. There have always been enough resources provided no one takes more than what they need. Every now and again some warlord will carve a path of destruction through the land and the commoners wonder what inspired such manic behavior. Life on Avalon is a rollercoaster of peace and war, famine and plenty, calm and tempest. It seems that no matter how much technology advances or defenses shored, one event or another eventually levels the playing field and erases previous history.
Each race defends a city as its cultural center point. They tend to have a population from 8-12k inhabitants. Towns might spring up at common crossroads or particularly fertile areas and hold 1-8k people. Finally, a network of villages and hamlets generally dot the surrounding land and might range from 20-1k individuals. These smaller settlements are especially vulnerable to marauding wildlings and corrupted beasts, and bounties are offered by each race to adventurers to help defend their food supply and citizens. There are two large cities on the continent of Avalon. In the west lies Fairsage City (pop: 40k), where one will find the red-blooded races living in harmony. The east holds Chrysopotis (pop: 50k), a sprawling metropolis home to various blue-bloods.
In general, there is very little organized religious practice besides the intermittent popularity of the Chaos Cult. Most are content to live their lives, subject to the will of the land and find what happiness they can. Those that look to a supernatural source for inspiration will often cite the essential element that might lend aid. For example, a woodcutter might pray to the spirit of the forest or gravity itself upon striking the final blow to fell a tree; a potter would pray to fire or the local spirit of the kiln. Each race might have different names and practices, but there is no proof that these beings exist or have agency in the world. Maybe the right portal hasn’t opened yet? It does seem however, that one is able to earn favor with the chaos with the strength of their faith. For example, a cleric that believes in good fortune and performs good acts, might feel empowered enough to cast good spells.
Each race has a strong sense of cultural identity and are generally satisfied with their lot in life. Those who find themselves filled with the thirst for progress and adventure are free to do so, but anyone would tell you it’s a fool’s errand to try to save the world. Some folk merely want a change of pace and you’ll find scattered minorities in any city or town.