by Delos

Arcane Fallout: The Dwarves

Let’s talk about the most stubborn and toughest group of people in Arcalypse World, the Dwarves. I know it seems like the dwarves are these bad guys that are just going to go after anything they can, but let’s hear their point of view.

A Short History of the Dwarves by Gimhad Ironquill, Sage of the Mountain

Ours is a proud race. We’ve built wonders no other race could have hoped for. We made a mountain a kingdom. We stopped the tides of war, and yet these other races decide that they know better than us. We, who have been around since the other races came to our shores. We, who had helped the humans survive their first few years on these unforgiving lands. We are evil, unforgiving, and cold or so says the other races.

Rune magic came to the dwarves like breathing and digging. We used the gifts of the gods to make our world a better place. We helped our human friends. Taught them to work stone and metal. Our runes kept castles secure and blades sharp, but even the best runes in the world weren’t ready for the crash.

Our ancestors felt it hit. Though we literally had a mountain between us and it, we still felt it. Soon reports started coming in that a ship from the sky fell to the world. Our good King Khalin Steeleyes sent his best to go investigate. Reports say that they had to fight through the thousands of barbarians that lived in the area surrounding the crash. Human armies followed in their wake for an easy path to the ship. That path is now known as the Road of Bones. The road is as white as a snow topped mountain, but there is no white stone in that area. That is the bones of those savage humans that refused a peaceful passage. Our people got to the ship. There they encountered the wrath of an angry god. Any that got too close where turned to ash and bone instantly. Once it was determined that no one could get in and we couldn’t dig our way in, King Khalin ordered our people back and asked the human leaders to leave this ship alone. The humans didn’t listen. They never do anymore.

We later found out that the ship had dropped all sorts of artifacts to our world. We couldn’t get them to work despite our best efforts so the King ordered them to be locked up. We couldn’t destroy them back then.

Reports started coming in that something was happening by the ship. The savages were changing, becoming bigger, stronger, and more of a threat. Soon we heard that the human kingdoms were losing the western borders. They let out a call for help. The elves were hiding in their woods so it came to the dwarves to fix this mess. The King sent some of his guard to deal with this problem. They were not ready for what they found. The savages had become the greenskins we now know. A request for the whole army to march came in. The humans would never be able to defend against this threat. The King sent the army, but told them that they were to secure the land for future incursions. Once the greenskin leader was put down the hoard broke. The humans thanked us and politely asked us to leave. The army was under orders to stay and keep the border secure with whatever it took. The human leaders took offense. They claimed that they could take care of their own borders. Obviously not, but their wounded pride wouldn’t allow them to accept our presence. So the general of the dwarven army told them quite calmly that if they want to fight they are welcome to it, but his orders were to keep the threat of the greenskins  away from our mountains. That meant the dwarves would be staying. The humans were outnumbered by us 5 to 1. Finally the human leader ordered an attack on us. It wasn’t the whole human army that obeyed. Most of them just stood by and did nothing, but a few did attack and we put them down quickly. It was decided that whatever had changed the savages has started to change our former allies. For the safety of our people the King ordered the humans to leave their lands. Being utterly defeated the humans left.

We wouldn’t come into conflict with the humans again for years. The humans set up a small kingdom to the south and we kept a close eye on them. They didn’t change any more and were keeping to themselves which was fine by us. Then we got word the the humans were working with artifacts from the ship. We demanded that they turn them over for everyone’s safety. Of course the humans refused yet somehow we’re the stubborn race. After we tried diplomacy we had to result to force. The humans put up a fight. The King kept pleading with the humans to stop threatening the safety of our lands with these strange devices. We all heard stories how some of these artifacts from the sky ship would suddenly spring to life and cause untold destruction. How they could bring the dead back to life in a mockery of their former selves. How no one could control them. The humans refused. The King made the hardest decision he ever faced. If the humans refused to stop this madness then they would be put down like a wild dog. That’s when she appeared.

Ingrid Starfire. The Dwarvesbane. Master of Arcana. The first wizard. She appeared like an avalanche. Suddenly and with the thunder of a mountain. She cut through our ranks with arcane fire like a hot knife through lard. Our runes would fizzle out around arcane magic. Our best armor became only as good as a humans. We had to retreat. Now we had a mad dog who commanded a power greater than ours. The humans wield a power that will get everyone killed. The dwarves were at a loss as to how to deal with this so we did what we could, and gave the humans plenty of room to blow themselves up.

Next thing you know the elves show up, but they no longer look like the creatures that they were. No now they look like some sort of monsters from the darkness of their woods. The King feared that everyone is changing into something terrible and only the dwarves can stop this madness. So now we keep to the mountain. Keep our people safe. King Khalin eventually died of old age, and his son King Rhalin took the throne. King Rhalin has been trying to open up talks again with the humans and elves, trying to understand what had happened, and working towards a new peace, but there is a lot of bad blood between us and them. We’ll have to wait and see what happens. Hopefully us dwarves will still be sane and unchanged by the time a new peace has formed, or maybe we will have to join this insanity to finally gain peace. Gods help us.

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