|Artwork by Luis Filipe de Almeida|
The Empire of Zartar
The Zartarians expanded their domains fairly quickly and in a brutal and sinister way. The people they viewed as useful were offered to become allies and servants of the sorceress masters, and those who they deemed unworthy were simply enslaved. This last group was the most numerous one however.
Every year the Empire of Zartar expanded and reached new uncharted territory, taking whatever riches they could find and enslaving whatever people they stumbled upon. Few could withstand the hellish legions of Zartar, powered by the chaotic sorcery from the Abyss. Each people subjugated fueled more sacrifices to the Zartarian’s sinister gods, making them stronger and stronger.
This age saw the development and advancement of many fields, including dramatic arts, sculpture, architecture, alchemy, literature, astrology and many other fields. It is rumored, however, that many of these advancements were not achieved by Zartarians, but by the people they dominated and forced to work for them.
Sorcery was, however, the main focus of research by the First Sorcerer-King, and after thousands of years, he built a powerful vessel to brave the cosmos outside Anttelius. This powerful Zartarian left Anttelius bent on becoming a god amongst the stars and left his daughter to lead the Empire on further conquests, but that would not last.
The Height of the Empire of Zartar
The First Sorcerer built eight great crystal ziggurats before journeying to the stars. No one really know what he put inside each of them or what were their purpose. Chroniclers assume he divided his powerful artifacts amongst the eight locations in an attempt to prevent anyone from acquiring them all. The location of these ziggurats is unknown but sought after many treasure hunters and power hungry sorcerers.
A sorcerer poet of Zartar was known as the Death Pen. His poems were charged with chaotic energies and those that read it could die instantly. Until today, evil spirited sorcerers seek these poems to use in their machinations against one another.
It is believed that the Zartarian were influenced or even controlled by alien entities, as some of their most prominent ruins present weird angles of almost impossible geometry, making those that enter it dizzy. Some claim to see into distant lands and weird place in there, and there are rumors that a few of those that visit those places became completely mad.
The First Sorcerer-King ruled their subjects with the help of a powerful gauntlet made of star metal. This artifact was capable of turning anyone into a puppet in his hands and could weave powerful sorcery. The wielder had to sacrifice his own hand to use such a powerful object and subject himself to the will of it, or tame it.
The First Sorcerer-King ruled the Empire of Zartar for thousand of years. He kept his vitality draining the life of thousands of men, women and children through sinister rituals. Their corpses were all entombed in endless catacombs below the throne. Their souls, cursed and tormented, serve as guards to the formidable treasure hoard of the legendary Sorcerer-King.
The position of the many palaces of the First Sorcerer-King forms the shape of a constellation that will appear in the sky when the time of his return finally arrives. The stars are almost aligned.
The First Sorcerer-King had thirteen love companions, one for each month of the Zartarian calendar. However, he had one additional lover, a man who him truly loved and in which tomb he hid his their most treasured possessions. The location of this tomb has never been found until today.
Rumors say that there were not one but many First-Sorcerers. Powerful weavers of chaos magic took the mantle of their predecessors as X’Zagoth dictated, each warlock taking the life of their former lord. Now X’Zagoth has chosen another emperor.
The Empire of Zartar grew so much, it reached another universe altogether. Now, with the gates to this universe lost, the Zartarians from this other dimension continue their conquests. Someday they will return seeking their emperor.
A group of dissidents from the Empire lead by the Arch-Sorcerer Ambah’Rar sought shelter and a new place to live outside of the influences of the First Sorcerer. There they live until this day, and have reached unimaginable advancements we can only dream of.
During the height of the Empire, great orgies were organized by the cult of X’Zagoth, and amidst the participants, dozens of demons and alien entities took part in the activities. Thus, the blood of the Zartarian was forever tainted by chaos, but made them powerful users of sorcery. Some of the living Zartarians, because of that, may be influenced by the lords of the Abyss.
In their journeys across Anttelius, Zartarians left many offerings to their alien patrons in the form of statues, monuments and strange structures. Each of them can be used to learn ancient arcane secrets if one can decipher their meaning.