The Dragonslayers' Tavern
The Chronicle of Nerath
(Modified from “The Roll of Years” in the Forgotten Realms Player’s Guide for Dungeons and Dragons, 4th Edition)
Several kingdoms, regions, and cities throughout Pirol have their own forms of annual reckoning. One of the most widely recognized (and the one used herein) is the Swordfall (SF) calendar. This calendar dates to the time, nearly 600 years ago, when King Eothyr I was gifted with the mythical Sword of the White Well by a mysterious but powerful eladrin lady—the event that led to the formation of the Kingdom of Nerath. Despite the various forms of annual reckoning used around the continent, most folk refer to births, deaths, weddings, and other events by the name of the year. For example, 599 SC is the Year of the Shadowed Bloom. Children learn the order of the years from bards, artistic designs in temples, and their elders. Although the meanings of year names are often obscure, most years (until they arrive) are seen as mysterious portents of the time ahead. The Chronicle familiar to most folk was penned by Xandor the Mad and expanded by the great sage Strom Wakeman in the Kantakaran Monastery. A second Chronicle, known as the Twilight Skein, is said to exist as well, penned in darkness by Xandor and held in secret by the Church of Lolth. Below is a brief accounting of the recent years of the Chronicle and the years to come that would be known by most adventurers.
Recent and Future Year Names
|Year Number||Year Name|
|597 SF||Year of the Rising Wreck|
|598 SF||Year of the Unearthed Sin|
|599 SF||Year of the Shadowed Bloom (current year)|
|600 SF||Year of Distant Winds Blowing|
|601 SF||Year of the Brilliant Memory|
|602 SF||Year of the Golden Heresies|
Known History of Nerath and Recent Developments
1 SF: Rise of Nerath
The power vacuum left behind by Bael Turath and Arkhosia allowed Nerath to rise as a new human empire, uniting many different peoples. When elven forests or dwarven mines were overrun by monsters, the survivors often fled to the nearest human town.
ca. 100 SF: Karavakos, a tiefling wizard, made an infernal pact for a legion to secure his petty kingdom from wild monsters and civil rebellion. His kingdom expanded to rival Nerath. But when he tried to invade the Feywild, he was defeated and imprisoned in the Pyramid of Shadows along with his eladrin consort Princess Vyrellis. Their life-forces became splintered, preventing them from escaping. Karavakos decapitated Vyrellis in anger, and the resulting artifact was seized and used to further secure his prison.
ca. 190 SF: The minotaur city of Saruun Khel was abandoned after a civil war. The surviving minotaurs were cursed by Baphomet with mindless fury.
ca. 200 SF: The hero Vendar slayed the dragon Ayunken-Vanzen is his lair beneath the falls of the Nentir River. Vendar stole from the dragon’s hoard the fabled Flame Imperishable, which became the beacon in Nerath’s capitol.
ca. 250 SF: Yazadoun, a tiefling warlock, erected a fortress overlooking the ruins of Vor Rukoth, a cursed city of fallen Bael Turath. A meteorite destroyed his fortress and the site was named Yazadoun’s Folly.
ca. 290 SF: Human settlers from Nerath move north into the Nentir Vale, establishing Fastormel, Harkenwold, and Winterhaven. Aranda Markelhay built the Moonstone Keep, around which Fallcrest began to grow. Valthrun’s Tower was also built around this time.
ca. 295 SF: King Eothyr III commissioned the Society of Imperial Artificers to create an adaptive artificial being. His son, King Elidyr, redirected the project for war, resulting in the warforged. King Elidyr led his armies against gnolls marching beneath the Ruler of Ruin’s banner. More than half of Nerath’s strongholds were razed in the war.
ca. 400 SF: Kalton Manor was raised by Lord Arrol Kalton, but the tenants were driven off by monsters from the Witchlight Fens. Cultists of Orcus created a gate to the Shadowfell, flooding the world with undead. Legionnaires from Nerath sealed the gate and built the Shadowfell Keep.
ca 410 SF: King Elidyr, along with all of his heirs and trusted nobles, died in the final desperate battle against the Ruler of Ruin. Although the demonic gnoll was slain and his armies were routed, the Sword of the White Well shattered in Elidyr’s hand and a great chasm opened to swallow most of the survivors.
ca 450 SF: Gardmore Abbey was destroyed by evil forces after the paladins reputedly brought back a dark artifact for safekeeping.
ca 480 SF: A fortified town called Fort Dolor housing remants of Elidyr’s army was built in the hinterlands. Its growth provoked repeated attacks by the white dragon Frystiomagythant.
ca 490 SF: Troglodytes occupied Hrak Azuul, the Fungal Fortress, located in the Underdark deep beneath the Nentir Vale.
ca 495 SF: Nerathi commander Sir Malagant challenged an alienist cult leader to single combat in the Warwood. Both leaders died, resulting in the scattering of both armies.
500 SF: After a few decades without a king, Nerath finally disintegrated into independent states. Talon Pass was sacked by barbarians shortly before the collapse.
510 SF: The Bloodspear War began as orcs from the Stonemarch swept across the Nentir Vale. Fallcrest, Kobold Hall, and Fastormel were razed. Hammerfast was briefly but effectively occupied thanks to the intercession of an exarch of Gruumsh. The orcs were only repelled after Moradin struck an unlikely truce with Gruumsh.
520 SF: Shadowfell Keep was abandoned. Sir Keegan slaughtered the keep’s residents.
525 SF: An earthquake collapsed the upper towers of Shadowfell Keep.
560 SF: The hobgoblin Azarr Kul discovered the Fane of Tiamat in the Wyrmsmoke Mountains. After uniting the tribes and gaining draconic allies, he made plans to conquer the Elsir Vale, a civilized area across the sea from the Nentir Vale.
570 SF: An earthquake caused a large portion of Vor Rukoth to rise out of the ashes, and other portions to slide into the rising sea. The tent city Kalinohr arose in support of efforts to loot and explore the newly exposed ruins. Kalinohr’s defacto ruler, the mysterious halfling Coyote, permits open slavery and any other activities that profit him.
575 SF: The wizards Hasifir, Niame, and Samazar came to Saruun Khel and established the Seven-Pillared Hall.
590 SF: The Red Hand of Doom, led by Azarr Kul, razed several villages in the Elsir Vale, but was finally defeated at the gates of Brindol.
595 SF: The Hand of Naarash, a cult of Bane, began to influence the borderlands.
598 SF: Adventurers slew the white dragon Frystiomagythant, freeing Fort Dolor from impending destruction. Soon after, a hell gate in the dragon’s lair was opened by Trilleste the howling hag.
598 SF: Kalarel arrived in Winterhaven, then moved on to Shadowfell Keep.
598 SF: The Light of the Sun, a martial order, sent a team to strike at the Hand of Naarash’s temple known as the Pillars of Night.