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Age of Sigmar - The Lore

33191 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Vaz
Hello all,

Having picked up the first volume of Age of Sigmar today, I felt I should post as much information as I can so that my fellow Heretics can understand the new lore and history of the Mortal Realms and the War Against Chaos. I will be dividing the information into Chapters so that it is organized and not overwhelming on new info.

So let us begin with The Lost Ages, the time between The World That Was and The Worlds That Are;

Into darkness he fell, a glimmering streak in the endless black void.

It was Dracothion, the Great Drake, that first beheld Sigmar. He was clinging to a lustrous sphere of shimmering sigmarite that hurtled unchecked through the dark ether.

Entranced by the gleam of its core, Dracothion chased the careening orb, seeking to capture it and set it in the Heavens to better admire its beauty. Only then did the Great Drake notice the battered form of Sigmar gripping the pitted metal. Sensing a kindred spirit, Dracothion revived the god with a warming breath and permitted him to ride upon his back.

Sigmar was grateful and thanked Dracothion, bestowing gifts upon the Great Drake. In turn, Dracothion showed Sigmar hidden paths - star bridges and crystalline pathways - that led to each of the Eight Realms.

Thus began the Age of Myth.

The Ages of the Mortal Realms are divided into three distinct epochs that have shaped the Realms. The Age of Myth, the Age of Chaos and the Age of Sigmar. After being found by Dracothion both he and Sigmar discovered that the God-King was not the only survivor of The World That Was, which Dracothion had hung in the cosmos and named Mallus. Its core was an anchor against the storm, a lodestone for the echoing souls of those who sought to deny Chaos its ultimate victory. Memories have great power, especially those of vengeful souls. Those of embittered gods are the most potent of all. Like seeds that weather winter to sprout anew in spring, Sigmar and the other lost divinities of that world began to grow stronger once more. All bar the God-King himself slumbered in an unknowable limbo, but the fallen were nourished nonetheless by the ever-shifting magics that saturated Mallus. Their memories and dreams slowly shaped the grand sphere’s eldritch aura, coalescing into forms that had a presence in the material universe. When the suns and moons of the heavens glowed bright, the surface of Mallus surged and flickered with the light of a billion lost souls, hosts of the vengeful that were one moment corporeal, the next as diaphanous and incorporeal as ghosts. These shadows of a bygone age were not alone. There remained those warriors and seers who had escaped the unbridled destruction of Chaos, who had sheltered in otherworldy havens, passed into mirror dimensions, or been swallowed by the Realm of Chaos only to fight their way back out. But for every soul that somehow clung on to existence, there were thousands who were gone forever. In many ways, it was this grand outrage that gave the survivors a sense of purpose, a bitter need for vengeance, and a material form.

After discovering the Realms, still covered in the dew of creation, Sigmar and Dracothion went on a great voyage across each of them, both of them journeyed far and wide, finding enclaves of primitive humans and monstrous beasts. Sigmar taught mankind many things and in turn he was worshipped as a God-King again. There are many tales of Sigmar's encounters in this time; such as how he slew the Hydragors that guarded the gates to the Realm of Shyish, and how there he found the fallen god Nagash buried under a mountain-cairn and freed him; or how he freed the Realm of Aqshy from the tyrannical rule of the Volc-Giants. Everywhere Sigmar went he found more humans, trapped under the oppressive yoke of beasts and monsters, and everywhere he went Sigmar dispatched them and brought freedom and pride to his new subjects.

Meanwhile in the Realm of Hysh, Tyrion of Cothique awoke from his long slumber to find that he had been elevated to godhood. The Lord of Lumination had finally risen. Discovering his brother Teclis, also raised to godhood, next to him and that the now-blind God of Light could see through his brother's gaze, Tyrion set about shaping the Realm of Hysh, but they were alone in this new and strange world. When the Twin Gods found Sigmar they were pleased, but despaired to learn that outside the still-growing city of Azyrheim, there were no signs of Aelfkind. Both swore allegience to Sigmar and joined his growing pantheon.

While exploring the Realm of Chamon Sigmar found the Duardin Gods Grungni and Grimnir imprisoned at the top of the Iron Mountains. How they came to be there, they would not say, but each readily swore the oath of allegience and set about repaying their debt to Sigmar. Grungni, now crippled in form and unable to raise his hammer and fight alongside his brother-god, promised to fabricate whatever Sigmar desired as his smithing skills were unharmed. Grungni gathered the remaining Duardin and established the Iron Karak, a bastion of the Steamhead Duardin that would always answer Sigmars call. However Grimnir was a warrior and asked Sigmar to name an enemy worthy of his axes and that it would die, Sigmar named Vulcatrix the Mother of Salamanders that terrorized the Realm of Aqshy. Though the battle was titanic and created the Plains of Aqshy by it's very occurence, the end result was that both the Slayer God and the Ur-Salamander destroyed each other. Where the hoat coal remnants of Vulcatrix landed a new volcano was born, but where Grimnir's fragments ended up is a mystery that the Duardian share with no one.

In the Realm of Ulgu, a new being awoke. This being with little memory of himself could not control his own solidarity, a fact that enraged him. As his anger grew, so did his physicality, and thus Malerion, once Malekith the Witch King, now a twisted being born of the Chaos-fuelled merging of Malekith and his dragon Seraphon, explored the Thirteen Domains of Ulgu. He found many strange beings but no signs of Aelfkind, apart from one. In a glade of Shadow Daemons he found a bacchanal staged by a enrapturing she-aelf, one that Malerion recognized. His own mother Morathi, changed in ways not recorded. Mother and son, remembering their final actions towards each other in the World That Was, were not happy to be reunited, but made an uneasy truce and united under Sigmar, joining the Great Alliance.

In the Realm of Ghur Sigmar discovered the twin-headed God of Orruks and Grots known as Gorkamorka, trapped withijn the Drakatoa, a living avalance that ruled Ghyrria. Destroying the amber-massed monster, Sigmar and Dracothion freed Gorkamorka, believing that the Orruks that infested each of the Eight Realms would make fearsome allies in the fight against Chaos. Gorkamorka was pleased to be freed, yet infuriated that he had required help at all. Attacking his benefactor, Gorkamorka knocked Dracothion senseless with a single blow of his club, and in response Sigmar began what turned into a twelve-day battle. During this epic confrontation the Eight Realms themselves shuddered, when Sigmar flung Gorkamorka down from the sky the resulting blast created the Mountains of Maraz, while errant strikes from Gorkamorka's club created the Gouge Canyons. After twelve days both gods were weary and upon seeing the wreckage they had created, and the audience of beasts that had paused to watch this once-in-an-eternity confrontation, both Sigmar and Gorkamorka began to laugh. They grasped each other's hands and agreed to fight alongside each other, Gorkamorka seeing an equal in strength that would lead him to many great battles.

In the Realm of Ghyran Sigmar found Alarielle, now the God of Life, and recruited her to join his pantheon. How he did this is not recorded as of yet. In Ghyran Alarielle found a realm that abounded with life in all it's forms; living mountains strode aross eternal forests, geysers birthed spumes of colourful birds, and glittering streams graced floating gardens. Though Alarielle was grateful to the man-god for awakeningher, she found solace in nature alone and after centuries of wandering through her new garden world, she revealed her own secret. The Everqueen bore magical seeds harvested from Athel Loren in The World That Was, and as she sowed these seeds in various conditions across all of Ghyran, a race was reborn. The Sylvaneth, once called Treeman and Dryads and a myriad of other names, flourished in this magical forest world. Aelven spirit beings found a home there as well, and Ghyran was truly at peace.

Finally Sigmar alighted into the Heavens and discovered the Celestial Realm, the Realm that would be his. In gratitude towards Dracothion for all his help, Sigmar forged a necklace of pure sigmarite and gifted it to the being that helped make this second chance possible. The great city of Azyrheim was built around Mallus, and from this incredible place the Grand Alliance of Gods was forged with the God-King Sigmar at it's head and peace was spread across the Mortal Realms.

As grand as the Alliance was, cracks soon began to form in it. Gorkamorka, though filled with respect for Sigmar, felt outright hate or contempt of his fellow gods and caused unrest wherever he went. Tired of this, Sigmar dispatched Gorkamorka to clear the wild countries, a task that suited the Sometimes Two Gods perfectly. Meanwhile Alarielle, now tired of both mortal and immortal company and pining for The World That Was, desired only to nurture her crops, spending more and more time in the Realm of Ghyran and rueing having to return to the Vault Celestial for councils and endless bickering among brother and sister gods. The greatest fracture came when Malerion and Tyrion, both still eager to find signs of Aelfkind beyond their own realms and Azyrheim's golden walls. They could find nothing in the land of waking, but in their dreams both the gods of light and shadow heard endless screams and cries, the sounds of the damned undergoing eternal torment. It was at the ending of The World That Was that Slaanesh, youngest of the Dark Gods, feasted mightily upon the endless stream of Aelven souls that came to him, so great that by the final end of what was, the Dark Prince was bloated and helpless. Seeing an opportunity to at last remove a fellow God and rival from the Black Pantheon, Tzeentch manipulated Khorne and the newly born Aelven Gods into a quest that saw the Dark Prince's realm invaded by the hordes of the Blood God and the Prince himself stolen from his throne by the Lords of Lumination and Shadow. But in pursuing their own goals, Malerion and Tyrion weakened the Great Alliance by being derelict in their duties to Sigmar.

Next came the first betrayal. Tired of the tedious orders and constricting laws of his fellow Gods, Gorkamorka could take no more. With no warning the twin-headed god snapped and gave a deepthroated roar of 'WAAAAGH!' that sent the Orruks to new heights of rage. The invasion that followed swept across the Eight Realms, devastating them; cities were crushed, armies were trampled, and allies were destroyed in an avalance of green skin and crude choppas. Upon reaching the edge of nothingness - the abyssal World's End - Gorkamorka turned his forces around and set off to do it all again. The Great Waaagh! ended only when the greenskin tribes became mired in endless infighting, and Gorkamorka himself fractured into the twin gods Gork and Mork and succumbed to same arguments and infighting that plagued their children. Since that day Gorkamorka has reformed several times, each time heralding a new Great Waaagh! that unites the Orruk tribes into a wave of death and destruction, but no Great Waaagh! has ever been as devastating as the very first.

But this age was not to last forever, for the Dark Gods had their gaze fixed upon the Mortal Realms. Khorne, Nurgle, Tzeentch, and soul-bloated Slaanesh before his capture, coveted what they saw and began making plans to invade the newly born Realms and corrupt everything within. However the Realms proved their greatest challenge yet as they naturally resisted the incursion of Chaos. Only the mightiest of the Greater Daemons or the Gods themselves could open the veil between realms, and even then the fissures they tore were temporary things that closed quickly. This did not stop them and Daemons like Ghorghax, commander of the Rage Legion, and Kairos Fateweaver, Oracle of Tzeentch, led horrific incursions into the Eight Realms. At first these invasions were paltry things led by slaughter-mad Daemons that quickly dwindled in numbers as the valiant defenders of the Mortal Realms sent the Daemons screaming back to the Forge of Souls, but this did not last as the Dark Gods began combining their powers to open greater and greater rifts, allowing larger armies to enter the Eight Realms. As more and more rifts were opened the Age of Myth entered it's final era, made possible only by the capture of Slaanesh. The Dark Gods, ever greedy for more power, began fighting among themselves to seize the captured Dark Prince's territory for themselves. After centuries of war between the Fell Powers, they finally turned their gaze to the ultimate prize, the Eight Realms.

And with that, the Age of Myth was over and the Age of Chaos began.

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Teclis lives! This makes me so happy, and confirmation that both he and Tyrion have elevated to Godhood too. I can't wait for new Aelf models. Only bit I was unclear of from the wording, one of them is blind now? I'm guessing it was Teclis.

Thanks for doing this. I enjoyed your run-downs during the End Times, they were much better then my aborted attempt at Khaine.
Not at all, I quite enjoy making these transcripts. And actually it is Tyrion that is blind, I think. The actual passage is this;

Age of Sigmar said:
Although he could no longer see, Tyrion felt the glowing presence of his brother Teclis beside him.


Tyrion awakened his brother and discovered that he could see through Teclis' eyes.
So Tyrion can no longer see through his own eyes, but it does not say why.

Next Chapter - The Age of Chaos;

The Black Years, the Reaving Time, the Great Slaughter. It was called many things, an era of long defeat, an epoch of brutality - it was the Age of Chaos.

For many hundreds of years the forces of the Dark Gods ruled triumphant, their armies mercilessly grinding all beneath iron-shod heels. Seven of the Eight Realms were overrun, and spike-ridden fortresses erected to stand guard over ruined wastelands. These strongholds were malfeasance made manifest, and each drained the land's essence and spilled forth the baleful energies of CHaos.

All who opposed the conquerers were hewn down, their short-lived empires torn asunder, their histories consumed. All were drowned in blood. Still the Dark Gods remained unsatisifed, for boundless was thirst for destruction and decay, change and corruption.

Minions of the Dark Gods scoured the ruins, hunting down the remnants of once great civilisations. The slain were the lucky ones, for worse was in store for those enslaved...

So grew the power of Chaos, spreading across the Mortal Realms. It seemed the onslaught would not cease until the stars themselves were torn down into oblivion. With no opposition to deny them, the Dark Gods gloated. They revelled in the corruption, sure that final victory could soon be theirs.​

Thus far Sigmar's alliance had kept the Dark Gods and their armies at bay. It was Tzeentch that continually pushed for a combined invasion into the Eight Realms, but Khorne and Nurgle were wary of their manipulative brother and each wanted their own Champion to lead the way. These disagreements threatened to reignite the Daemon Wars that allowed the Age of Myth to survive for centuries more than it would have, only the suggestion that a particular mortal champion command the invasion kept the Fell Powers allied. And so it was decided that Archaon, The Ender of Worlds, would lead the armies of Chaos once again, and soon the Great Invasion began.

Each Chaos God demanded Archaon's sole patronage, for this time the Gods each wanted their own Champion to lead the final victory, not an Everchosen loyal to all and devoted to none. Archaon refused, and was forced to overcome each of the Dark Gods wrath, for each God feared that Archaon would eventually serve one of their rivals. Archaon overcame each trial, emerging stronger than before, and proving to the Dark Gods that Archaon could not be made into a devotee. Archaon gathered a great army to him as he had done in ages past, and in his wake he planted the banners of all the Chaos Gods, bar the Horned Rat whom the Ender of Worlds decried as unworthy. Having failed to destroy reality, Archaon had a new goal; to subsume the Eight Realms into the Realm of Chaos and rule them as Overlord. It was his destiny, and his right, and none would stand in his way. The Gods ceased in their efforts to slay Archaon; Khorne saw a warrior unbowed, a killer that would never be moved by politics or plotting; Nurgle saw a corrupter of the highest calibre, a force of nature who would leave nothing but death in his wake; and Tzeentch - more suspicious than any of his brothers - conceded that there may be more to Archaon than even he had seen. Gifts were bestowed, and once again Archaon, once Diederick Kastner of the Empire in The World That Was, was crowned The Everchosen of Chaos.

Archaon's first goal was to capture the Allpoints Bridge, a nexus point of reality that connected all Eight of the Realms and could be used to reach each realm easily. Great cities had sprung up around these Nexus Points, for these were the most stable method of travel between the Realms. The Nexus Wars had begun. Archaon, using the tactical acumen that saw The World That Was destroyed, simultaenously masterminded attacks that saw all Eight Nexus Points threatened. The Nexus Wars were a time of incredible history when the very Gods themselves walked among their children and fought to defend their realms, both sides boasted of legendary deeds and horrific defeats. But it was defeat and betrayal that saw the Nexus Wars end, when the Shyish Arcpoint was taken and fighting spilled onto the Allpoints - The Bridge To Everywhere. Sigmar's alliance had been battered by Gorkamorka, treated as peripheral by Tyrion, actively undermined by Malerion and ignored by Alarielle. But when the Forces of Death suddenly turned on Sigmar's forces at The Battle for the Shyish Arcway it was the true end of the Great Alliance. Sigmar, overcome by the betrayal of Nagash, left the battle, abandoning the defence to the dead.

Consumed by rage, Sigmar cast aside the aspect of the diplomatic God-King that he had become again and reverted to the barbarian warlord he had been in his mortal life. Even as Archaon and his forces captured the Allpoints, corrupting the realmbridge and assuring that no realm was safe from them now, Sigmar stormed the Amethyst Realm in what would come to be known as The War of Heaven and the Underworlds. All across Shyish Sigmar sought the traitor Nagash, bellowing insults of cowardice and treachery at the Lord of the Amethyst Realm. Nagash's emmissaries were ground to bone dust and his armies scattered into wreckage, for none could stand against the God-King's wrath, while the realms he had sworn to protect were ravaged and raped by the hordes of Chaos. Eventually with his berserker fury spent, Sigmar led his armies to the realms he had neglected to salvage what they could, leaving Nagash to deal with the encroaching Chaos armies. Perhaps Nagash could have stood against Sigmar alone, but as soon as the God-King marched out for revenge, another threat rose up. The Skaven, with suspiciously perfect timing, rose from their gnawed tunnels and assaulted Nagash's armies in their chittering hordes of millions. This was known as the War of Bones, and though it was fought to a standstill, it weakened Nagash so greatly that when Archaon and his armies came, their victory was assured. Only the darkest underworlds survived under the Lord of Death's reign, and as Archaon himself smashed Nagash to bone-dust the Amethyst King recoalesced on his throne, forced to watch as his realm fell to the enemy he had believed he could defeat alone.

In Ghyran the rotting hordes of Nurgle laid siege to the Realm of Life, for the Grandfather had always coveted these bountiful lands from the moment he saw them, and perhaps even their beautiful ruler as a replacement for his Poxfulcrum, lost in the sundering of The World That Was. The War of Life raged for centuries, the Dryads and Treekin fightering bitterly and brutally for every inch of verdant soil, but the plagues and soldiers of Nurgle were endless and eventually the war was lost. The Plaguefather held sway, only mystically hidden vales and groves were safe for Alarielle and her surviving children as the rest of her once-breathtaking realm began to rot.

Though not everything spelled doom for the defenders of the Mortal Realms. An ancient foe of Chaos, sensing the destruction of the new realities, arrived to lend their aid. Little was known about the enigmatic creatures which went by the name of the Seraphon, for they struck without warning, appearing to smite the forces of Chaos with implacable savagery, before melting away without leaving a single trace bar the broken and ravaged bodies of those they killed. Among the other warriors who fight for Order within the Mortal Realms, there are none who fully comprehend the Seraphon, either from whence they come or why they fight - however the Gods perhaps could see them for what they truly were; creatures of celestial magic whose hatred of the scions of Chaos burned as hot as their own. (Note: These are the Lizardmen, likely changed by their sojourn into space.)

By the time Sigmar returned, the Allpoints had fallen and become corrupted by Chaos, becoming the Eightpoints, a road directly into the very heart of Chaos that allowed uncounted legions of Daemons to enter the Eight Realms as easily as their own territories in the Outer Darkness. Centuries of slaughter followed as Chaos took victory after victory; a spearhead of Bloodthirsters cracked the walled cityof Ulgarod and flooded the streets with gore, the Pandaemoniad of Tzeentch took the city of Chamontarg and transmuted the doomed populace to stone. Rotplague destroyed the greatest civilisations of Ghyran. Eventually all fell, with the final empire of mankind known as the Lantic Empire being personally crushed into dust by Archaon. With the fall of the Lantics, seven of the Eight Realms were lost to ruin, and only one thing could be done.

Sigmar retired to the heavens, to the great city of Azyrheim in orbit above Mallus (http://1d4chan.org/images/d/d0/Age_Of_Sigmar_Map.png) and shut the Gates of Azyr, condemning the other realms to the fickle whims of the Dark Gods, but preserving his own realm and the millions of souls who had taken succour there when the invasion began. In Azyrheim Aelf, Human, Duardin and many others lived in peaceful co-existence; all dreaming of the day when they could return to the lands they had forsaken and exact revenge upon the Dark Gods. Sigmar sat upon his throne and planned to overthrow the vile rule of Chaos, his mood tied to Mallus, the remains of the Broken World, and as it waxes so does he, becoming full of life and energy. As it wanes, Sigmar’s outlook likewise blackens. As the centuries passed a ring was built around the Broken World as Sigmar watched it and brooded over his failure to protect both it and these new realms from Chaos, but soon the God-King decided on a new course of action, one that would either see Chaos defeated once and for all, or would be the final failure that would see Chaos ascendant for eternity.

In Sigmaron,
Great Stronghold of Sigmar,
The Palace of the Heavensl
There Shines Sigendil,
The High Star,
And Dark Dharroth Glooms There Also.
Loud Ring The Forges of the Six Smithsl
Great Armies Are Built,
Awaiting Only The Call To Battle.

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Next Chapter - The Age of Sigmar;

After the Realmgates were closed a great crusade was launched to rid the Lands of Azyr of monsters, Orruks and Skaven. None remained in the heavens save those whom Sigmar deemed worthy of sanctuary. Although his own kingdom and many millions of his subjects were safe, Sigmar looked down from his throne in the heavens to see the torment of the other seven Realms, watching as the edges o their realities blurred and began to sink into the roiling tides of Chaos. Sigmar would not allow the Mortal Realms to suffer the same fate as Mallus. The God-King called upon those still loyal to him and told them that a great work was to be undertaken, a work that they all would support or be named as Sigmar's enemies. None dared refuse, not even spiteful Malerion. Each of the Incarnate Gods gave a piece of their own power to the God-King, but even they did not know the reason why. Soon it would become apparant.

None gave more than the Smith God Grungni however. Although Grungni had given Sigmar the service of his people and the Six Smiths, he felt that his debt to Sigmar was far from paid. Seeing his lord's intent to free the Mortal Realms and knowing that the God-King had need of a weapon, for mighty Ghal Maraz had been lost along with The World That Was, Grungni set to work. Sigmar intended to recover Ghal Maraz, convinced that even the sundering of the world could not destroy the legendary hammer, so rather than a new war-weapon Grungni captured the Winds Celestial and forged them into a series of comet-headed thunderbolts, each one brighter than the most powerful flame. Now Sigmar could cast his wrath from the heavens, and soon the bolts would be put to the test.

Despite weathing blows that would level mountain ranges, the Gates of Azyr remained closed. Centuries of firepower had done little than weather the mighty threshold into the Realm of Azyr, yet the Chaos Gods were content to take their time. Nothing could leave the Celestial Realm, and they had all the time in creation to take their victory and savour it all the more. But Sigmar had not been idle these centuries, he had been working on a secret weapon, with new forges, armouries, barracks and secret laboratories being created all across Azyrheim. Calling upon Tyrion the Blind, his brother Teclis, and Malerion the Dark, the God-King wove a mighty web of sorcery and deception with the sole purpose of ensuring the the conniving Tzeentch, the only Chaos God for whom foresight and knowledge mattered more than corruption, could not see what was to come and warn his brother Gods. None could be allowed to know what Sigmar planned, for he knew that his plan to free the Mortal Realms from the subjugation of Chaos could only be achieved if his forces struck fast and did not falter with surprise on their side. But fortunately for Sigmar, the Gods of Chaos are fickle in their allegience, and the War of Wrath that was soon to begin would buy him the time he needed.

Khorne, Blood God, Rage Lord, War Incarnate was never a creature of loyalty or pacts. During the last centuries of the Age of Chaos when victory seemed all but assured, Khorne allowed his red gaze to be drawn to more worthy battlefields, and as usual it was his brother Gods that drew his wrath. A bloodtide was unleashed in the Realm of Chaos as the Daemonic Legions of Blood were unleashed in numbers never seen before. With fury they penetrated the Garden of Nurgle and the Crystal Labyrinth, slaughtering the servants of Nurgle and Tzeentch in their home-soil, while in the Mortal Realms the Blood Times began as the servants of Khorne turned upon all those that did not bear the Brazen Lord's mark and slaughtered them. Even Archaon could no longer control the slavering hordes of berserkers. None could stop the red ravagers of Khorne, not the remnants of Sigmar's alliance, not the Orruk rampage, not the arcane manipulation and trickery of Tzeentch or even the counter-attacks launched by the alliance of Nurgle and the Great Horned Rat. The skulls only slowed when the dogs of Khorne turned upon each other in their bloodlust, and for centuries only the rule of blood reigned supreme in the all the Realms of Mortals and Chaos.

In the midst of battle across the Mortal Realms, the mightest of Human, Orruk, Aelf and Duardin kind were transported away in a flash of lightning, for a greater cause than defiant suicide against the Chaotic hordes awaited them. Each of these mighty warriors, be they veteran or youngling, found themselves standing in Sigmaron, the Palace Among The Stars,where their trials were about to begin. In Heldenhall, the Hall of Heroes, each man and woman feasted for three days and three nights to build their strength for the hardship to come. In the Chamber of the Broken World barbarian and technocratic nomad were blasted apart by lightning over and over, that they made be reforged in a process that could last anywhere from a few heartbeats to centuries of agony for even time itself turned molten in the Forge Eternal. Not all would survive this process. Seven times seven are the Cairns of Tempering, where the body and soul of each warrior were blended with the Gifts of the Gods that would make them something never before seen in either The World That Was or the Mortal Realms, and to ready them for the final trial. Upon the Anvil of the Apotheosis were these warriors wrought into a new form, enduring the shockwaves from the last blessings of the World Hammer, each soldier awoke with a portion of the God-King's won power, the energies of the celestial heavens crackling through their very souls. And with this final step, the time had come for humanity to strike back. Vengeance had come.

Thunder rolled and twin-tailed lightning split the skies of all the Mortal Realms, each strike searing the air and scorching the ground. For an instant - less than a fraction of a mortal heartbeat, each bolt lit its surroundings with stark brilliance, but following each flash came a thunderclap and the battlecry of the heavens that shook the very ground. From the glare strode hulking shapes, the celestial lightning still crackling about their golden armour. Thus did the Stormcast Eternals enter the war, riding the very lightning bolts of their God-King, and with their first steps into the Mortal Realms a new age began, an age of vengeance and hope. The Age of Sigmar.

The disparate and oppressed folk felt something new.

In the Jade Realms of Ghyran, Alarielle felt the lands around her stirring. For the first time in an age, there was a wholesome feel to the breeze. In Aqshy, the tribes felt something rekindled, as if embers long buried had once again sprung to flame. In the savage lands of Gur, those with the keenest senses were the first to scent it - the winds were shifting. Everu living being in Shyish felt a chill, the unmistakable sign that Nagash once more strode the waking world. In the Ulgulands, the shadows parrted so that Sigendil, the High Star, could be seen beaming down. In Hysh, the symbolism of new beginnings and the return of reason sprouted everywhere. Even in the hard and unyielding lands of Chamon, where ephemeral whim was despised, the promising feelings solidified. In Azyr, where it all began, the heavens rumbled and lightning fashed as mighty Sigmar sent more hosts down into the Mortal Realms.

Rumours of the gleaming knights that rode upon thunderbolts sent from the heavens swept the Realms. Open rebellion against the Dark Gods was beginning for the first time in centuries. For the first time since the Age of Myth the desperate free folk felt something that they had not known before. They felt hope.​

With the arrival of the Stormcast Eternals, the Realmgate Wars had begun. Though the Champions of Order had been hurled into battle by Sigmar, the God-King could not do this indefinitely. To unleash the whole might of the Stormhost Legions, the Gates of Azyr would have to be opened, a tactic that relied on those first brave knights being able to open the gates from both sides. The shock of their assault sent tremors that reverbated all the way into the Realm of Chaos itself. So unexpected was the initial attack that hundreds of the Warriors of Chaos were slain as they stood slack-jawed in amazement as the shining knights that strode from the lightning hacked them down like chaff. But the followers of Chaos were warriors all, and it was not long before they realized that a new enemy had at last come to challenge them. Bellowing battlecries feared since reality itself was young, they ran headlong at the enemy, eager to spill heavenly blood. All across the Mortal Realms did the Stormcast join battle, and everywhere deeds of legend were performed.

At the living portal in Ghyran, the Lord-Celestant of the Knights of the Aurora hacked down the ravager-lord and slammed open the Gates of Life; in the Igneous Delta Vandus Hammerhand, leader of the Hammers of Sigmar, slew Korghos Khul of the Goretide, the Destroyer of the Scorched Keep. Khorg'tan, Bloodthirster and The Living Rage, halted the first two strikes of the Stormcast Eternals at the Scintillating Portal, but fell to the relentless blows of the Celestial Vindicators and was sent back to the Realm of Khorne, bloodied and broken. When it became clear that the Gates of Azyr were the goals of these attacks, entire Daemonic Legions were dispatched to end this rebellion before it could begin, but Chaos was too late. When the Gates of Azyr opened thunder and lightning split the skies in every Realm, even the skies of Chaos were filled with the flash of heavenly energy, and the Stormcast Eternals in tens of thousands marched from Sigmaron and advanced to meet the oncoming hordes. The Stormcast had struck their first blow, but they were not alone.

Ethereal winds swept across Shyish as crypts burst open, grave mounds were toppled and the Legions of Death rose anew. When Nagash emerged from the Starless Gate his intent was clear, to purge Shyish of the Chaos infection once and for all. From the depths of the Seven Abyssal Pits to the Skull Islands, from the Helstone Monments to the Desert of Bones, no lands of the dead were beyond the Amethyst Lord's rule. Casting an invocation of such titanic proportion that a tomb-chill was felt across all the Mortal Realms, all the unquiet spirits and restless dead of the Amethyst Realm were called upon. And they answered. Entire armies of the dead, each millions strong, rose up and assaulted the Chaos hordes from all sides. The dead marched to war once again. Though Chaos held sway over the land, the monuments of the dead felled and the cities of the living burnt and broken, they had underestimated the necromantic might of Nagash. Though the Dark Gods had blessed many of those that dwelt now in Shyish, they were simply outnumbered by an uncountable margin; a single Chaos Champion might butcher a hundred foes before being dragged down into a flurry of rusted knives. Yet even these dark heroics were wasted for the hundred slain would simply rise again, with the now fallen champion marching alongside them. Nagash and his Mortarchs led the way, winning the Slaughter at the Starless Gates and, with the unexpected aid of the Stormcast Eternals, retaking the Arch of Bones and casting the Bloodthirster Khar'zak'ghul back to the Brass Citadel.

In the Shadowlands of Ulgu the mists rose up around the armies of Khorne that had taken the realm for their own. When they disappated all that remained of some of the Blood God's most fierce warriors was shredded carrion. Yet this did not discourage those that came next, for the followers of Khorne scorned anything that would skulk int he fogs, and nor were they alone. Slaanesh, the Missing God, had been lost for centuries since before the Age of Chaos began, yet now there were signs of his presence in the Realm of Shadows. His followers, ever-loyal, marched in force upon the Shadowlands, intent on finding the being known as Malerion and rescuing their lost lord.

In Aqshy the Stormcast Eternals were not alone when they struck against the forces of Khorne. The flame-bearded Fyreslayers emerged from the mountains and joined the battle, for these dour followers of dead Grimnir were quite happy to lend their aid to the forces of Order, for a price. These Duardin prized the legendary Ur-Gold the centuries having robbed the descendents of the ancient Slayer Cult of their honour and love of tradition and oaths, and would fight alongside anyone who could offer them even the smallest bit of Ur-Gold. Even the Forces of Chaos...

In Ghyran after long years of suffering under the corruption of Nurgle, a new wind began to blow in the Realm of Life. As the Stormcast Eternals launched their offensive across the Realms, something began to stir in the hidden vales and glades across the Jade Kingdom. Ancient Treekin and their Dryad children rose up, massacring those followers of the Grandfather that were too slow to react to the monsters in their midst. The Realm of Life had not been bested yet, and once more the War of Life was renewed.

Yet it was these vicious and merciless attacks that ended the War of Wrath. As hundreds of his Daemonic champions came, crawling in shame, before the Gates of the Vanquished in the Brass Citadel, speaking the name of the Stormcast Eternals that had struck them down, Khorne turned his gaze from the Realm of Chaos and back to the Mortal Realms. Hesitant to join forces once more, for the War of Wrath had cut deep into the bonds of evil that kept the Chaos forces together, entire armies were being isolated and destroyed by Sigmar's champions. Never before had such a challenge to the sovereignty of Chaos been issued, and Khorne would meet it. Rising from his throne and gave a bellow so great that every realm shook and it echoed into eternity. A coppery wind blew across the Mortal Realms, and everywhere the the Mark of Khorne was to be found, it burned bright. If it was war that these bold upstarts wanted, then Khorne would show them the true meaning of the word.

And so the Realmgate Wars began, a conflict that would either be the salvation of humanity and it's allies, or the final victory of the Dark Gods over reality itself.

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