History of Ralkea
“The Guiding Light of Civilization”
- The nation of Ralkea calls itself “The Guiding Light of Civilization”
- Their culture centers on commerce and the furtherance of magical studies.
- The three great cities of Ralkea: Koroco, Lamerin, and one in the north that has been lost to the wilds.
The foundation of Ralkea was a result of the War of the West, where four great families fought on behalf of their city-states over control of the great lighthouse at Koroco. The victory was secured on behalf of the Tael family by Martial Tyron, a militiaman who was able to unite the merchants of Ralkea into an impenetrable defense surrounding Lamerin.
In Lamerin, the early guild of mages forged a magical artifact: a jewel crown called the Emperor’s Crucible. Upon donning the crown it either judges an Emperor worthy, or destroys them. Martial declined to claim the crown, insisting that the Emperor must be a common person from Ralkea: one of the merchants of the realm. Many tried to don the crown and were found wanting, and the people began to think it was a trap by the mages intended to destroy merchant families, until Linus Tael succeeded and became the first Emperor of Ralkea. The crown continued to choose an emperor from one of the prominent merchant families for generations, resulting in them being dubbed the Noble Merchant Families.
The Ralkean empire flourished under the rule of each successive emperor and became a haven for merchants, craftsmen, and seekers of knowledge from all over the world. The country enjoyed an era of peace lasting for over 500 years.
However, upon the death of the last emperor, the crown did not declare any members of the merchant families worthy. This led to a splitting of the power as the noble merchants raised armies in attempt to declare themselves emperor.
The country had been weakened by many years of continued war, and just as it seemed one of the families was becoming victorious a scourge of orcs flooded in from the north and tore through the ranks of the Ralkean armies. The orcs were eventually defeated, but the crown was lost during the war, leaving the people without a clear emperor.
None of the noble merchant families were left to claim the empire; what people remained were mostly simple farmers and craftsman, as well as the fractured remnants of the college of magic. Representatives from some of the more influential families of Ralkea came together to form a new government, but many still continue to search for the lost crown in an attempt to assert themselves as the emperor.