A decade or two ago, war broke out between the Arcane and Druidic sects within the Empire. The Druids were an archaic group, deep-seated in tradition and held conservative ideals. Druids, which were more like Shamans in their day, worshiped individual groves or other natural objects, and were incredibly powerful as compared to the current day druids. However, their power only was consolidated within their grove, or other natural site. When fighting broke out, the Empire decided to back the Arcane: they had helped raise the levels of Elgia and aided the Capital become incredibly wealthy. Likewise, they could instantly drop the upper levels upon the City and destroy the center of power within the Empire.
The Druids were driven out of the cities and out of their sacred groves, as fighting broke out across the continent. Retreat orders were sent out, with the destination set as the only place Druids could be safe: the Wild. Thus, the surviving Druids entered the Wild in droves, safe for the Empire for some time. There these Druids remained, with a hatred for the Empire that knew few bounds.
A group of adventurers, loyal followers to Aerlyn the Long-Bearded met within his study for a secret meeting. The contents of this meeting contained talk of treason, as defined by some. Aerlyn is a relatively youthful elf within the Proudrock Senate, who’s word carries much power within the city, and even within the Empire itself. About a week ago, the Senate renewed that the Druids gathered within the Wild were not an issue and would not be further dealt with until absolutely necessary. The costs of funding a full-fledged war against the Druids within the Wild was much to high to be considered a rational possibility until an immediate threat is proven.
Odd encounters and rumors had begun on the borders of the Wild, rumors of strange Druidic gatherings began spreading throughout Aurnia. These rumors had yet been proven. Thus, Aerlyn brought a band of adventurers together to gather substantive evidence about the Druids, hoping to prove their immediate threat to the Empire, though unsanctioned. A drought had begun throughout the land, and Aerlyn was suspicious about its timing, though aligned with the natural cycle of rainy and dry years.
The adventurers set out with Steve the Companion, who was Aerlyn’s most trustworthy friend, a powerful wizard. The group made their way into the Wilds, first encountering a large band of trolls enjoying their midday meal. This meal consisted of human meat, which proved somewhat odd to the group. No bodies were found, however.
Moving on from the troll graveyard, the adventurers came up to a large opening within the forest, a grove of some sort. Within the grove was an arrangement of a dozen large boulders, ornately decorated with wooden carvings in some sort of henge. Bodies were strung between each boulder, held together by wooden links, finely carved within the limbs of the corpses. Steve, in a rage against this atrocity, began cutting down the bodies vigorously. Likewise, Admiral Bjorg and his riding tiger began destroying the boulders, tearing them from the earth. A storm began forming above the grove, which soon assumed the shape of a storm elemental, striking the tiger with a bolt of lightning. Several minutes later, the storm elemental had been defeated, and the clouds above the grove dispersed along with some of the strong magical aura of the location.
After the battle, Mr. Sandyhat and Steve disappeared. Steve was never seen again, but Mr. Sandyhat seemed rather pleased with himself upon reappearing, talking about strange happenings with a Xill and Steve’s body being used as a nest for some ~65 Xill eggs. Odd.
The party continued deeper within the Wild, finally coming up to a large waterfall. At the base of this waterfall was one man, deep in prayers and thought. He appeared to be worshiping the awesome power of the falls. This place, too, had an incredibly strong magical aura about it. The man presented himself as a Druidic Lord, one of the leaders organizing the strange encounters with the outskirts of the Wild. Angered by their destroying of his henge, the Lord turned into a gargantuan fifty-foot omnimental intent upon slaying the party. Only the nameless Rogue and Chet the Mystic Theurge escaped with their lives, to spread the incredible power of the Druids and the threat they posed the Empire. Thus, war was renewed among the Druids and the Empire.