For centuries the twelve Kaldanic tribes of the northern desert lands of the Ninth World have been under the oppressive rule of the Lattimor being known as Grantulusk, the self-proclaimed emperor of Adramnajar.
As time has passed, Grantulusk’s stranglehold on the lives of the tribes has gradually loosened, but has been ever present.
Each tribe must still pay homage to the Adramnajar ruler by way of discoveries made in the desert which nearly depletes the tribes’ economic independence since its artifact trade with other kingdoms is the groups’ way of life.
Suffice to say, factions of the tribes have unsuccessfully attempted small rebellions and declarations of independence, all thwarted thanks in part to Grantulusk’s grotesque armies and collection of destructive artifacts and cyphers.
A union of all twelve tribes against their common foe has never materialized since the groups have often quarreled with themselves in land disputes and debts owed.
The closest the tribes ever came to victory was 70 years ago when the then-queen of Iscobal, Whenith Sarromere, was approached by a delegation of four of the tribes and offered aid in the form of an army led by her younger brother Prince Aldarik Sarromere.
Those who knew the queen well at the time knew it was not altogether an altruistic gesture, but that of curiosity and selfish needs that would further the queen’s growing and troubling fascination with artifacts that dealt with dreams to which Adramnajar was rumored to possess.
The queen’s distaste with Aldarik’s constant meddling in her new found vices, however well intentioned, was also on her mind when she sent the prince to the northern deserts.
The prince and his army aligned with four of the tribes and lasted more than anyone could have thought possible. Prince Aldarik and his army had to contend with the unaccustomed and unrelenting heat of Adramnajar as well as with Grantulusk’s army of inhuman monstrosities for two long years.
Before his retreat with less than a third of his army remaining, Aldarik made a promise to the Kaldanic tribes that the Sarromere family would return and they would not be forgotten.
Grantulusk and his army eventually annihilated all the four tribes that united with Aldarik’s army. It was a lesson that the remaining tribes did not forget.
Prince Aldarik pleaded with the queen for many years for an invasion force to free the lands of Adramnajar. The queen and her counsel argued that the remaining tribes voiced no concern whatsoever of Grantulusk’s rule and were content with their current situation.
Aldarik spoke no more of the matter after his daughter, Falorian, found him murdered along with his wife in a country home outside of Isocbal’s capital city of Mulen.
The culprits behind the murder have never been found although there are rumors abound that it was an agent working for Grantulusk to extract revenge for Iscobal’s meddling in his empire. Some even say the queen ordered her brother’s eternal silence.
Decades after the queen was disgracefully deposed, Falorian Sarromere has brought an army loyal to her family to the northern deserts to keep the vow her father took to all the tribes of Adramnajar.
The Duchess has since relinquished the title of princess due to her beliefs on her father’s death, and has been at war with Grantulusk for several months now.
Although Falorian only has the support of two of the tribes, the remaining groups have offered full compliance once she has removed Grantulusk from the kingdom.
As if both sides, who have lost significant numbers, could contend with more, another mysterious faction has been brought to the stage; a group composed of mercenaries and thieves led by a rogue seeking one of the most sought after treasures of the Ninth World.
The three groups have all converged for different purposes upon Qourzazat, an enormous city built upon the remnants of a vast underground ancient metropolis.
Falorian Sarromere, the optimistic but naive would-be-savior, is in search of a powerful automaton artifact that could mean victory not only in Adramnajar, but also in Iscobal as well where King Noren tiKalloban now rules.
Grantulusk, the wise but selfish ruler of the northern deserts, sees Qourzazat as a strategic city that if won would not only divide the Iscobal forces, but would be a major moral blow to the invaders who have lost the last several battles.
Razmodus Kavialas, the scheming but stubborn captain of the Rogues of Kaladryen, seeks to take advantage of the confusion and chaos that comes with war in order for his group to slip into Qourzazat and steal one of the most desirable jewels in all of the land.
Unbeknownst to all however, are a myriad of obstacles within and below the city of Qourzazat that includes beings made of glass and a dimensional child oblivious to his own destructive power.